My life


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1. The whole story

I close my eyes and cover it with my arm, trying to block out the sunlight.  My windows are wide open, and all the afternoon light is pouring through, but I don’t feel like closing them. Plus, it warms my body as I lie on the floor. I’m so tired- I stayed up until 12:34 watching t.v last night, and had to get up at 6:30 for school. My bed is just inches away, but I’m so comfortable. I could fall asleep.

    Just as I begin to drift off, I feel a light pat of a small animal on my stomach. I open my eyes, and my cat, Desdemona, is staring back at me. I smile and pet her, mildly annoyed. I almost got a wink of sleep. I sit up, my comfortable position gone. Desdemona jumps off of my chest as I get up, then curls up behind me, right where I had been resting.

    “ You’re a thief, Desdemona! You know, I’ll never find that spot again!” I pretend to scold her but pet her head.

I won’t be able to get any sleep in the middle of the day, so I lay on my bed and begin my homework. I didn’t get much today; a math worksheet and a reading assignment. They aren’t even that long either. I do the math worksheet in 15 minutes, and the reading in 20. I still have 4 hours until I need to get to bed.

I look around my messy room. I have clothes on the dresser, books and toys on the floor, and my stack of paper fell off my desk and is now spread all over the floor. My bedroom isn’t normally such a mess, but my little brother got in and decided it would be fun to go through my clothes and bring half his toys in. I hope he had fun.

He’s completely spoiled. His name is David, which means ‘beloved’. Beloved. It’s like my parents planned on spoiling him. My name -Ashley- means ‘Lives in the ash tree grove’. What does that mean? I live in the middle of Missouri, not an ash tree grove. I want to change my name, but my parents won't let me.

But David always gets what he wants. I’m still wearing my jeans from 2 years ago, but David just got a new wardrobe- and he’s 5. I understand that he’s younger and he needs the support, but neglecting me won’t make it easier for either of us. If anything, it’s hurting us. It’s caused me to be anti-social and hide in my room watching t.v and reading. I only have 1 real friend, and she moved last year. So now we have a phone-call-relationship. It’s nice to keep in touch with her, but it’s not the same as going to school and seeing her.

I begin to pick up the papers off the floor. Half of them are seriously crumpled, so I have to throw those away. 7 of the remaining are scribbled on with marker. I put those to the side to give to David later; he’ll cry if he finds them in the trash. I place what’s left of it on my table, the amount noticeably depleted. I then pick up all of his toys off the floor and put them in the pile next to the ‘drawings’ David drew. I pick up the markers and put them in the box, placing them on top of the small pile of toys. Finally I fold up all of my clothes and put it in their drawers.

I pick up all the toys in my arms and put the papers and markers on top. I open the door with my elbows, and carefully walk down the stairs to the kitchen. My mom is making dinner and stifles a laugh when she sees me carrying a wobbly pile of toys. I frown.

“ Mom, please keep David out of my bedroom. I’d like to keep it clean.” I say stiffly, using this time to re-position the pile.

“ Yes, I’m sorry, Ashley.” She says teasingly. I grunt and walk away, annoyed.

I walk out of the kitchen to David’s room. Just as I’m about to open the door, he comes out of the room and sees my holding his toys. He begins to cry.

“ Moooommy!! Ashley took all of my toys!!” He screams, stomping his feet. He makes the whole house shake, and I hear my mom set down her spatula and know that she’s coming. I drop all of the toys on the floor and run.  I run passed my mom and run up the stairs.

She probably wasn’t going to scold me; she knew I was bringing them back. But I couldn’t take that chance. For the past 5 years, whenever David cried I was the one to blame. There have been times where I wasn’t punished, but I’ve been accused almost every time. After 3 years, I began to count how many times I’ve been accused, and how many times I’ve been grounded. 37 times punished, 65 times accused. In 2 years, I’ve been hurt for my brother 102 times…

No wonder I ran.

I’m done. I go back downstairs to see my mom and brother picking up the toys. I stand in the corner and watch them for a moment. When they’re done, Mom looks behind her and sees me. She tells me to come, and I do.

“ Ashley, what did you do to your brother? He was screaming, and then you ran away. When I asked him what you did, he said you hurt him.”

Hurt him?! Oh, how I wish I could.

“ I didn’t hurt him, I brought the toys back and he freaked out! I did nothing wrong!” I yell. I don’t mean to, but I’m not gonna be a push-over anymore… even to my mother.

“ Are you sure? He didn’t stop crying until I started helping him pick up the toys.”

“ THAT’S BECAUSE HE WANTED THE F***ING TOYS!”

… Crap. I didn’t mean to say that.

“ Ashley! You- you! Room. Now!”

    I go back to my room, but I’m not upset. She deserved that. I usually don’t swear, but I got so mad. I don’t want to become the kid who curses, but I won’t apologize. I refuse to be punished for my brother again. I go back to bed and turn on YouTube. I put on my Nightcore playlist and sit down on my bed, trying not to think about what my punishment will be.

    I don’t hear the knock on my bedroom door, so my mom walks in. I don’t look at her and stay sitting on the bed, watching the lyrics to the song scroll across the screen. She sits next to me and motions to turn off the music. I do, but don’t look into her eyes. I’m tired of her right now.

“ Ashley?” She says to me, trying to get my attention.

“ What?” I reply, still not looking into her eyes.

“ I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to sound rude when I asked you what happened.”

“ That’s not it,” I say, looking at my lap.

“ Then what is it?” My mom gives me a look that only a mother can give you. The one that makes you want to pour your heart out to her.

I don’t.

“ Nothing. It’s nothing that you need to know.”

“ I’m your mother. I need to know everything about you.”

“ Why? So you can use it against me?!” I yell. Oops.

“ What?” She says, shocked.

“ Nothing. Get out of my room… please. I need some time alone right now.”

    She puts her hand on my shoulder and gives it a slight squeeze, gets up, and leaves. I get off the bed and close the door behind her. I turn the music back on and lay on the floor next to Desdemona. The playlist lasts for 2 hours, so I sit there until the end of it.

    Once the playlist stops, I’m left in silence. I keep stroking Desdemona’s head as she purrs softly. I stay in this position for about 15 minutes, my mind wandering. I finally get uncomfortable and get up. I plug my charger into the laptop and turn on Attack on Titan. I’m only 4 episodes in, but I’ve fallen in love with it. I get halfway through it when my mom comes in and tells me to come eat dinner.

I awkwardly walk into the dining room, where my brother and mom are sitting together. She’s feeding David some broccoli, and David is trying to keep it from going into his mouth. I sit down and look at the dinner- Chicken, Rice, and broccoli. I begin to eat the broccoli, and as I’m starting the rice, my mom speaks up.

“ Ashley, you do realize you will be punished for cursing, right?”

Well, duh.

“ Yes. But I don’t believe I should be.” She frowns. I’m really pushing it with this, but I don’t feel like sulking in my room for two days or more.

“ Why do you believe that?”

Here we go…

“ Well, the word I said is a part of the English language, therefore it should be okay for me to say. I understand that I can’t say it in some places, but at home it should be allowed.”

She smiles and retaliates.

“ Yes, but that is only your opinion. Society doesn't want children your age cursing. You need to be taught how to be a civilized human being.”

This time I’m the one who smiles.

“ First off, is my opinion so insignificant that it doesn’t deserve to be thought about? Second, society has nothing to do with my argument. I was stating that it should be acceptable for different reasons. You told me about society, which I have no interest in knowing about. Third, plenty of amazing and inspirational people curse, so cursing doesn’t make you uncivilized.”

My mom used to debate with people like this a lot, and I sort of started doing it too. I usually give a better argument and give more convincing facts, but she always plays the ‘mother’ card.

“ Well, we’ll see how your father reacts, then!”

I finish the plate, say my thanks, put the plate in the dishwasher, and go back to my room. I lay back down and get my cell-phone. I dial Jemma’s number as I pull my blanket over me.

“ Hey, Ashley!” She answers the phone.
    “ Hi, Gem!”

“ What’s up?”

“ Umm. I accidentally cursed at my mom.” I laugh.

“ Oh, no!” She laughs “ How did she react!?”

“ We had another debate, so it’s up to my dad what my punishment will be.”

“ Well, what do you expect if you do something like that? You should really be more careful.”

“ Yeah, yeah. So, what’s with you?” I ask, changing the subject.

“ I made a couple friends, and I’ve been spending most of my time on YouTube.” She  laughs. “ I re-watched all of Dan and Phil’s videos last night.”

“ Yeah, I actually did the same. I was up until 12: 35 last night.”

“ I was up until 11: 56. This isn’t healthy, ya know.” She laughs again, and I can practically hear her roll her eyes.

“ I know, I know.”

“ Well, I have to go take a shower. I’ll talk to you later, yeah?”

“ Yeah, bye!” I hang up and look out the window.

The sun was setting, and I’m tired. I set my alarm, lay down on my back,  pull the blanket over my head, and fall asleep.

                        ***

Beep Beep Beep Beep Beep Beep!!

I open my eyes and look at the alarm clock. I hit snooze and try to go back to sleep, but I can’t. I sigh and slowly get out of bed, yawning.

I look through my drawers and put on some black skinny jeans and a black shirt with a dying rose on the front. I then brush my teeth and hair and pick my backpack up. I’m ready within 15 minutes and still have about 35 minutes left, so I turn on some music and read.

With ‘The Intervention’ by Nine Lashes playing in the background, I read through 50 pages of Binge until I need to start walking to school. I swing my backpack back around my arm and go down the stairs. When I get to the bottom, my dad is waiting for me at the bottom. I try to walk past him, but he places his hand on my shoulder and says “I’ll drive you to school today.”

I nod and mumble thanks, and make my way to the front door. My dad follows behind me, keys in hand, and gives me a smile. I don’t know what’s up, but I’m sure it’s about my argument with my mom yesterday. I might have overreacted, but I’m done being grounded for nothing. As I ponder on what will happen, I get into my dad’s car. He gets in on the other side and starts the car.

He pulls out of our driveway and begins to drive down the road towards my school. I awkwardly watch the car in front of me, and he coughs. This is his way of telling me that he needs to talk to me.

“ Ashley, I heard about what you said to your mother yesterday.” He says, keeping his eyes on the road.

“ Yeah..” I reply, fiddling my thumbs.

“ I understand that you’re upset.. and that not everything is fair, but your mom means the best for you. You know that, right?”

“Yeah.. uh, so how long am I grounded for?” I say, getting to the point.

“ You're not. Just don’t do it again, okay? Deal with your brother until he’s older and doesn’t need so much attention. I’ll talk to your mom as well.”

We sit in silence for a moment, and we pull up to my school. I thank him for the ride, sling my backpack over my shoulder, and step out onto the curb. My dad drives away, and I look over all of the kids walking up the stairs to the double doors.

I go to 7th grade at Newtown Middle School. It’s an okay school, but I don’t enjoy my time here. The teachers are pretty nice, but most of the students aren’t. There are 3 groups- jocks, bullies, and nerds.. and then there’s me. The three groups are separated by gender, so there is 5 groups. The girl bullies, boy bullies, the girl nerds, the boy nerds, and the jocks are all boys. I know it’s stereotypical, but it’s the case here.

I had a couple friends before, but one of them started hanging out with the bullies, and the other left. Gem and Sierra. Sierra was nice, but she was pushed away by the other groups, and eventually forgot about me. Gem, or Jemma, left to live in Maine. So now my best friends are YouTubers and anime characters and the such. I sit alone at lunch reading, but I honestly don’t care that much. It’s upsetting, but I don’t need to get mixed up in all the drama.

I begin walking up the small flight of stairs to the front doors. As I walk in I hear someone running through the halls, and smell hot fries. This is where most of the kids sit around sharing snacks before and after school.

    I continue to walk to my class, and watch as a whole load of people gathers around a kid on the floor. I walk up a single flight of stairs, go to the right, and walk into my classroom. When I walk inside I am greeted by my teacher, Mrs. Vanessa, who is standing at the door greeting students.

    Mrs. Vanessa is the best teacher in the whole school, hands down. She’s kind considerate and tries to keep all of her students entertained while working. She does things like roleplay as characters from the book she’s reading aloud, and props her feet up on students desks from time to time, causing the whole class to giggle.

    She also lost her husband in a car crash. It was really upsetting for her, and she had to take a couple weeks from school to grieve. In the time that she was away, I had collected a large bag of things that I thought she would like. Books, flowers, and little toys for her son. He’s about 5 months old, and she brought him to school one day. I was the only one who she let hold him, and the rest of the class was really jealous.

    I’m pretty sure I’m her favorite, although she tries not to show it.

    “Glad to see you’re here, Ashley.” She says to me, leaning against a table. I nod and walk towards my seat, pushing through the crowd of kids surrounding the person next to me’s seat. Her name is Sylvia, and she’s one of the most popular kids in the school. Unlike most of them, though, she talks to me occasionally. But only in class, not after school or during lunch.

    I sit down and she looks at me, sees that I’m having trouble, and tells everyone to back up a bit. I nod my head in thanks and pull out Binge while sitting down. In about 10 minutes the whole class is settled down and Mrs. Vanessa is in front of the class.

    “Alright, I have to grade yesterday’s tests, so this advisory you all get to play around and socialize. You have 30 minutes, so keep your voices down, yeah?”

    I sigh as the rest of the class yell “Yeah!” in unison. The whole room scrambles to their friends, and soon I am surrounded by people. There are about 20 kids in my class, so about 7 students are leaning over my desk and chair. I get up and grab my book, hugging it as I push through the small crowd of people.

I walk up to Mrs. Vanessa, who seems to have expected me, as she smiled up at me before I say anything.

“ What do you need, Ashley?” She asks me, placing her pencil down next to the large pile of papers she needs to grade. I look at it wide-eyed for a moment before snapping back to attention.

“ Umm. I’d like to read outside of the room, in the hallway, please?” I reply, holding my book out slightly to show her the book I plan on reading. She smiles up at me and says,

“Of course, but come back inside by 8:45; I have a special announcement for the class. But shhh shh!”

She puts one finger to her lips to signal to be quiet and waves her hand towards the door. I smile and nod, then turns around and leave the room. I sit against the lockers and lose myself in the book Binge until I finish it. I then check the time on my wristwatch.

8:40.

I walk back into the classroom and see my classmates running around throwing pieces of paper at each other. I sigh again and sit down, waiting for the ‘special announcement’. Judging by the fact that Mrs. Vanessa is just beginning to clean up, I’m guessing it’ll come any second now. I put my book back in my bag, contemplating what book to read, when I hear Mrs. Vanessa begin to speak to the class.

“ Everyone, please sit down! I have an announcement to make!” She says, putting her hand on one of the students backs to direct them out of the middle of the room. There going to be new student he not going come today but He will need a buddy. “I said I will do it” Everyone look at me in nods like i was the savior “Mrs. Vanessa said Oh Ashley you are so kind”. “Austin said what his name” “Mrs.Vanessa said his name Zach Davis” My heart skip a beat when a boy came in wearing a tank top in shorts in his low haircut.”Mrs.Vanessa said oh Zach you here” “Zach said Yea I just want to get a head start” “I said Welcome I'm going to be showing you around” “He look at me in said Ok” His voice is sweet in claim I almost fell down in my chair “Mrs. Vanessa said your seat is by Ashley” Zach start to walk toward the desk next to me in sat down “He said so what do we do now” I said after She done talking I'm gonna take you to your next class.

8:59.

“OK class Miss Vanessa says I see you last period” I got up put my hair in a ponytail and walk to Zach I said “Your next class is gym and I'm going to be in your every class” “He said Ok thanks for everything” I look at for so long I start to to walk out then turn around to see if he was coming. He start walking to locker to put his stuff up then he walk towards me and said let's go When we got there everyone stop and stare at us like we did something bad “Mr.Harbaugh said you're late” “I said I'm  his buddy so I have to take him to his classes” “Zach said I’m Zach nice to meet you sir”Everyone stare Mr.Hardball like he was about to yell he start walking to Zach and shake his hand “and said I’m Mr. Hardball” Zack start to speak when the firelight came on. We all start walk down the stair to outside

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