I headed toward my car as a group of boys ran by, hollering and shoving each other. Where they were eager to start off the year, I wasn't exactly ready to mix with the crowd. I could use a cigarette first.
The crunch of my boots on the gravel seemed hauntingly loud in the now-empty lot. The warning bell had just rang - even our residential stoners had dragged themselves to class on time, albeit give or take a few minutes.
I spotted my blue car, unlocked it, and swung open the passenger-side door. In the glove compartment, folded in a stack of papers and napkins, was my borrowed pack of Marlboros. "Bingo."
I crouched by my car, lit up, and exhaled after a deep drag. In the meantime, I checked my phone. As expected, my inbox was a pileup of back-to-school plans and texts from half of my first period class. I picked one at random, and lazily replied, "Just a second." Soon enough, Mara would spread the word - Whitney Dermont was on her way.
After crushing the cigarette butt with my heel - boots I'd purchased in Paris, mind you - I headed toward the front doors, and waved at our elderly security guard. "Morning, Sheldon!"
The halls were entirely empty, besides an occasional trampled flyer for the Wickhem High annual homecoming dance. I kicked one aside - the back-to-school bonfire was where the real party would be. Last year's had been a blowout, and undoubtedly, its successor would be no less. After all, I was throwing it.
I climbed a flight of stairs, turned twice, and stopped outside my classroom. I read the plaque above the door - Freeman, a teacher notorious for reducing a tardy student to tears. God knows I'd had my share of his attitude last year.
I leisurely shoved the door open, and strode on in. Head high, Whitney, I coached myself, as I'd done every day since middle school.
And as they'd done since middle school, heads turned.
"Sorry I'm late."
My first day back was a blur of dreary teachers, flirty smiles, and half-assed answers. A huge upside to my morning was Cal Darrin - our star running back who made for some excellent eyecandy. For once, alphabetically assigned seats were on my side.
At lunch, I sat with my usual crowd. There was Mara, the school gossip, and Paige, the head cheerleader, neither of which I was a big fan of. Directly to my right sat Jake Frazier, your stereotypical athlete, and beside him two cocky, sophomore jocks who prided themselves on their ability to gulp chocolate milk in five seconds flat. I chatted with Jake for a little while.
Sometime while listening to him rattle out football stats, a tray glided down the table into my arm. I started.
"Move down, Whit."
Jenna was my mirror image. Our white-blonde hair and hazel eyes were perfectly identical, so that my distinctive pixie cut was the only way to tell us apart. Our personalities, on the other hand…
"Hey, beautiful!" I grinned, snagging a fry from her. And just like that, school was officially back in session.
Note: It's been awhile since I've written first-person, so let me know my mistakes! This is a short chapter, a brief glimpse into our main character Whitney, who I have huge plans for. I'm excited to branch away from the paranormal genre, and into romance. Let's see how it goes. Thanks, as always, for reading!
Here's my self-designed cover (with Whitney), and my vision for our bad-boy-to-come.