To Be Delaware

To Be Delaware

Status: In Progress

Genre: Young Adult



Status: In Progress

Genre: Young Adult



Always the new girl, Theresa Beatrice Delaware can never seem to find her groove before having to move to a new place. But all of that changes when she meets long-haired, heavy metal fan, Dominick. They may appear to be complete opposites - she, the quiet, perfectionist straight-A student, and he, the outspoken, always-does-what-he-wants musician - but underneath all of that, they find they have more in common than their stereotypes suggest.
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Always the new girl, Theresa Beatrice Delaware can never seem to find her groove before having to move to a new place. But all of that changes when she meets long-haired, heavy metal fan, Dominick. They may appear to be complete opposites - she, the quiet, perfectionist straight-A student, and he, the outspoken, always-does-what-he-wants musician - but underneath all of that, they find they have more in common than their stereotypes suggest.

Chapter1 (v.1) - New Girl

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: May 13, 2017

Reads: 23

A A A | A A A

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: May 13, 2017



New girl, Theresa Beatrice Delaware thinks to herself gloomily, again.


Theresa, known to her family as Tess, carefully studies the exterior of her new school, rising up gray and formidable from her view in the passenger seat. It’s raining heavily, which provides the perfect setting for this particular event.


The first day at a new school.


“Tess?” her dad, Thomas Delaware, prods from the driver’s seat of his 5-series BMW, “Come on, Sweetie, I’m going to be late.” And then recognizing his insensitivity toward his only child, he adds, “You’ll do great. You always do. Take it one step at a time, and before you know it, the day will be over.”


Tess, still looking outside and seeing students trickling into the building - less now, since school is about to start - absently picks at imaginary hang nails on her fingers. She doesn’t respond to her dad.


Mr. Delaware sighs, and puts his hand on Tess’ shoulder. “Just one more year, Hun. Then you’re off to college.”


Tess looks up at her dad at that. That’s supposed to make me feel better? she wonders, understanding once again that her parents really don’t understand her at all.


But all she says in response is a quick, “Okay,” and leans over to give her dad a dutiful kiss on the cheek.


“Atta girl,” Mr. Delaware verbally applauds in his head coach tone. “Give ‘em hell.”


Tess slams the door behind her, slinging her backpack up high on her shoulder. Her dad won’t drive away until she’s safely in the building, so she turns to wave, and swiftly carries herself through the glass doors.


The lobby of the school is long and reminds Tess of an airport. It almost needs those moving walkways, she considers, thinking about all of the plane trips she’s taken with her family over the years. It’s mostly carpeted and appears relatively new, considering the amount of foot traffic that must travel through this area of the building. It was also mentioned to her that in the past couple of years, the school went through a series of renovations, so she wouldn’t be surprised if the lobby was one of those.


Feeling a sense of deja vu, Tess makes the trek to the front office, where she was told by her mom she had to check in. She passes by a few kids on her way, but for the most part, they’ve all scurried off to their first period classes. Before she gets a chance to put her hand to the door, a body slams it open, almost nailing her in the face.


A guy with longish, dark hair, a black fitted t-shirt and ripped jeans comes stomping out of the front office in his black combat boots. Tess expects to see a stereotypical scowl on this kid’s face, but instead, he appears good-natured. Care-free, even.


“Hey, sorry,” he says, quickly, apologizing for what might have been an unfortunate breaking-the-nose moment that would have identified Tess as “that new girl who broke her nose on her first day” for the rest of the school year. Instead, just a few papers flew out of her hands, and this guy is already on the ground, collecting them for her. “Here,” he declares, standing back up and trying to pass the neatly stacked papers back into her arms. “Are you okay?”


She realizes she’s been staring, frozen to her spot with her arms crossed tightly over her chest. “Oh-oh yeah,” she cringes at her forever awkwardness. “Thanks,” she expresses, even though he’s the one that essentially knocked the papers out of her hands in the first place.


Reading her mind, he laughs, “Hey, the least I can do after plowing into you like that.”


Nodding, she lets her long dark waves fall forward as a kind of protective curtain around her face. She’s reserved, and even though she always wishes she could be more outgoing, she can never seem to make herself that comfortable.


The guy smiles down at her, just a handful of inches higher than Tess, and he yanks the door open. “See ya around,” he says, and she slips past him, muttering a ‘thanks.’


“No problem!” he nearly shouts, making all the office ladies turn his way. To Tess’ amazement, they giggle - as in, girlish giggling. Combat boots grins rakishly at the group of women, offers an exaggerated salute, and then as he’s shutting the door behind him, says as a sign-off, “Ladies.”


Turning back around, incredulous at the scene that just happened, she makes her way to the counter with her papers, noticing that the office ladies are still chuckling. Ridiculous, she thinks, already done with this day. Regardless, she readies herself and delivers for the fifth time in as many years, the same line, different school:


“Hi, I’m Theresa Delaware, and I’m new here,” she recites robotically.




“So, you’re new, right?”


Tess sighs, trying not to be obviously annoyed by the question. This poor girl doesn’t know that this same question, delivered in the same inflection, has been presented to her countless times before.


“Yeah,” Tess says, afraid her tone may come across overly nice in a way that’s borderline sarcastic. “I’m new!”


This other girl, apparently named Erin, doesn’t seem phased. “Cool. Where are you from?”


Oh God, Tess thinks, again internally face-palming the simple-yet-complicated-for-her question that every other person and their brother asks her. “Um, well… that’s sort of a complicated answer.”


“Really?” Erin responds politely. Tess can already write the script for this conversation. “Dad in the military?”


“Nope.” Tess smiles, trying very hard not to come across as rude on her very first day. “He’s been working management for awhile and he’s good at what he does, so companies are constantly offering him bigger and better jobs.”


“Oh,” Erin says, seeming at a loss for words. Tess doesn’t blame her; sharing that her father is forever chasing more power and money over creating a stable home for his family doesn’t exactly create warm fuzzies.


“Yeah, just the way it goes,” Tess tries to end the topic. “So is this teacher nice?”


“Mr. O?” Erin asks, rhetorically. “Oh yeah, he’s the best. Everyone wants to take his class. I’m surprised you got in this late in the semester.”


“Just lucky I guess,” Tess mumbles.




“Here he comes, I guess?” officially deflecting the conversation elsewhere.


A tall, solidly built middle-aged man with long blonde hair comes strolling into the room in - yes, Tess is seeing this correctly - cowboy boots and dark jeans. He has a huge smile plastered on his face and a binder cradled in his arms.


“Hey, folks!” and Tess can already tell she kinda likes this guy.


Mr. O., short for Oblinski, goes over the homework assignment from the previous night and reviews the agenda for the day. Tess relaxes, mistakenly thinking that she’s dodged the bullet in this class - no introduction of the new girl for once.


Which is when, the boy from the office waltzes in, sees Tess and - of course - exclaims, “Hey, New Girl!”


Mr. O., instead of appearing irritated by Combat Boots and his late entrance, is actually thankful, “Oh, thanks Dom. I totally forgot!”


And then, Tess is in the spotlight. She glares at Combat Boots - Dom, apparently - and he simply grins back, offering a geeky thumbs up. Only somehow, he gets away with it. Just like everything, it seems.


“Theresa! I’m so sorry,” Mr. O. puts down his binder and actually comes over to shake my hand. “A pleasure to have you in class. Would you like to say anything? Introduce yourself? Sorry again if I’m putting you on the spot.”


To Tess’ horror, Dom plops down in the desk behind her. “She doesn’t mind, Mr. O. Right, Tess?”


What is with this guy? Tess furiously thinks, and once again, turns around to glare at him.


Dom, in his stupid grinning way, holds up his hands in an innocent-me routine, “What? Just tell us who you are and where you’re from, Miss Theresa.”


It takes all of Tess’ energy not to do one of several things: one, stomp out of the room; two, punch this guy right in the nose, and three, scream and cry and quit life altogether.


But, instead, she swivels back to Mr. O. and digs back into her New Girl script, “I’m Theresa Beatrice Delaware, but people call me Tess. I moved from Ohio, was born in Minnesota, and lived in a bunch of places in between.” And because Tess has learned over the years that humor goes a long way, she adds in a kind of dreamy tone, “I’m a Taurus. I love movies, long walks on the beach, and slow dancing to Phil Collins.”


As predicted, surprised giggles pop up around the room.


“Good to know, TBD!” Dom chimes in, which only adds to the laughter. Tess realizes that his comment is actually an act of kindness; he’s clearly someone people look to for approval, and he just provided affirmation that it’s okay to laugh at the new girl’s stupid joke. Tess is momentarily grateful.


Mr. O. smirks, taps her desk lightly and says for only her to hear while the other students converse loudly amongst themselves, “Welcome. And nice intro, To Be Determined.”


“Thanks,” Tess acknowledges, ignoring the nickname she’s heard before. At least nobody asked if she’s lived in Delaware - yet. “Doesn’t happen often,” referring to her stand-up comedian status, and not the fact that she has to introduce herself often.


“We’ll see,” Mr. O. says conspiratorially, clearly understanding her comment. He heads back to his place in front of the room. “Alright, guys. Where were we?”

© Copyright 2017 Joss Brighton. All rights reserved.


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