Condition: Stationary

Penelope wakes up in a hospital gown to her living nightmare. While she is still standing, the fault of an accident is put heavily on her shoulders. But then she meets Breanna and the pressure seems to become impossibly lighter as they uncover a whole new world together.


2. Then

On the third day of junior year I stumbled upon Nolan Sinclair. He was pretty significant. Not because he said that much to me, but he said a lot of things to others and I could sense his intelligence by listening to the levels of his voice when he spoke in class. Whenever he did speak to me, I would try not to overact it and play cool. I would also smile a lot; that’s what the magazines told me to do.

   Becca agreed with me: He was cute. (Put in her words, ‘genuinely handsome’. She was strangely surprised when I hit her with my chemistry book telling her to go a certain place with her mama’s 19th century vocabulary.)

   I didn’t allow myself to trust her advice completely; Becca had dated just one more guy than I had, which was basically the clean number of zero. I liked to think of us as being licorice and gummy bears; so different that most people would never dare of mixing us together, but when it finally happened … oh dang, the combination was good.

   Boys were a strange phenomenon to us. We were trying to figure it out, as most other girls these days were.

   “I don’t know if you’ve noticed,” Becca told me one day in lunch, “but this Nolan guy is like, hot and popular at the same time.”
   “I have a feeling that he’s popular for the right reasons,” I said.

   She bounced a hot Cheeto at my cheek. “No one is popular and a good guy at the same time, dipshit.”

   “How do you know?”

   “Because I know those people. I’ve dealt with their drama. And I wouldn’t like seeing you bringing it into your house.”

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