The tall, dark-haired girl approached the two-story building with trepidation and excitement. Her whole world had changed or seemed to change in just a few short summer months. Now here she was, a freshman in high school.
The building that had seemed so ordinary in the summer when she registered was now filled with mystery, sophomores, juniors, and seniors. The seniors scared her the most. Would her brother tease her in front of his friends or would she be able to pass through the senior hall unnoticed and unscathed.
She straightened the carefully chosen skirt and shirt, checked her hair and walked to the front door. Clutching her violin in one hand and her backpack slung over her shoulder she opened the door and stepped inside. The sounds of students filled the air with laughter, screaming, talking and groaning. She paused at the entrance to the senior hall, and then taking a deep breath she quickly made her way through the jostling bodies. “Past the first steps and up the second.” She thought to herself.
Trying hard to ignore the few catcalls sent her way she made it to the second set of stairs and began the climb. All she had to do was make it to the top of the first flight and then around the corner and she was home free. “Made it.” She thought with relief as she reached the top step, but then something in the universe went horribly wrong.
As she took the last step her other foot slipped and down she fell. She only slid four or five steps but her backpack fell all the way to the bottom and she cringed with each twang as her violin bounced down the fated steps to the feet of four senior boys.
Silence. All eyes turned to where she lay sprawled on the steps. She quickly got up, ran down the steps to collect her backpack and violin. Then the snickers started. Her face turned red. She wanted to sink into the ground.
“Hey there, Grace.” She heard someone call. A few others laughed. She was completely humiliated on the first day of school. When she retrieved her things she ran up the stairs and around the corner with tears brimming in her eyes. She hadn’t even noticed the pain in her arm and side until now.
When she reached her locker she opened it, shoved her backpack inside and sat on the ground tears falling down her cheeks. She brushed them aside and opened her violin case to survey the damage. All of the strings had popped out of tune, but luckily nothing had broken. She sighed. Then she felt a hand on her shoulder
“Are you okay, Melanie?” It was her friend Jenny.
“Yes, I’m okay. Thanks” Melanie replied with a pathetic smile. “Just embarrassed.” The bell rang. “Well, I gotta get to class.” Melanie said and picked up the violin and her books and made her way back down the stairs.
Several seniors shouted “Hey Grace” or “Hey, there’s Grace” as she walked through the halls. When she reached the orchestra classroom she tried to sneak inside to a back chair, but as soon as she appeared through the door the room erupted in applause. Several seniors shouted “Go Grace” while others laughed and called “have a nice trip, see you next fall.”
“News spreads fast.” She thought.Looking around at her classmates and the laughter in their eyes she finally cracked a smile and laughed. It was pretty funny to think about. She had made quite an entrance for her first day of high school. It was a day she would laugh about, but never forget.