“Hey Heather,” I shouted out loud. “Up here,”
Heather Drysdale had been entering the gymnasium scanning the bleachers with her eyes searching for a place to sit. When she heard my voice and saw me waving to her, she grinned and crossed the gym to climb up the heavily crowded bleachers to sit next to me.
It was our first day of school at Sigmund Freud High school. I was looking forward to my Sophomore Year since Freshmen Year had been full of nothing, but great memories. On the first day, our school required for each of the students attending to meet in the gymnasium, as they did each year, to receive a boring lecture about goals and other information about the beginning of the new school year.
To avoid having the meeting interfering with the class time all students had to arrive half an hour early to hear it. Most of the seniors ditched the meeting and then somehow snuck onto school grounds after words, but if caught they could be in serious trouble.
I watched Heather climb the bleachers passed the new freshmen. They separated us by our grade levels. On our side of the gym the Freshmen and Sophomore sat and on the other were the upper classmen, Juniors and Seniors. The freshmen harbored in the lower or middle level of the bleachers on our side, while the Sophomores dominated the top. I stared across the gym at the Seniors whose physical appearance resembled those of adults. When I was a freshmen, I recall thinking about how lucky they were to gradate this year and no longer have to endure the drama of high school.
Heather reached the top and I moved my books from the spot I had been saving for her. We were sitting at the very top, with our backs against a wall.
“Thanks for saving mea seat,” she grinned. “I want to sit as far away from the front as possible.”
“Well, this meeting is going to be boring. I’ve never been to one of them before at this school, but at my old school the ones they had usually sucked.”
I allowed myself to laugh because Heather was telling the truth. This was her first year at our high school and I had told her that I would help her out and show her around the place.
Heather moved in next door to me at the beginning of the summer. I had never had a friend and she was searching for one so this need we both required brought us together. It was that and also because we shared similar family backgrounds.
We both were the only child in our family and living with a single parent. Heather’s mother ran out on her and her father when she was a baby. Mr. Drysdale has been raising Heather on his own and doing the best that he can. Heather told me that he was a good father, but he was always working to pay the bills and put money away for her to go to college. The reason they moved to our town was in fact because he had found another job that paid more money than the one he use to work at.
He was rarely ever home, which left Heather alone a majority of the time. She was new and didn’t know anyone in our neighborhood and this was where I came in.
My mother never told me what happened to my father and every time I asked her about him she got really offended, so when I was younger I learned that it was one of those things that I couldn’t talk to her about. I was always curious and wondering about him, but never spoke of him because I knew it would hurt my mother.
Like Heather’s father, my mother was always working, but she spent more time with me than Heather’s father did with her. I usually saw my mother every day, unlike Heather whose father would show up at random hours then be too tired to even get to talk to his daughter.
A week after Heather first moved in, my mother and I went next door to welcome the new family to the neighborhood, but only Heather was there since her father had run off to work. My mother suggested that we hang out and it was awkward at first.
I was the shy girl who too bashful to make any friends on my own. I had a few acquaintances at school, but I wouldn’t consider those people friends since the only time we ever did anything together was when our teachers put us into groups.
Heather and I slowly began to talk to one another and open up to one each other and before I knew it we had become friends. Over the summer, Heather and I had spent a majority of our time together, riding our bikes, exploring the neighborhood, surfing the web, watching movies, and simply doing the things friends do. I was so happy because I had never had a friend before and valued Heather. When her father wasn’t home at night, she usually slept over at my house, since my mother didn’t mind.
I couldn’t wait to start tenth grade with a brand new friend to share a high school experience with.
“Bored…bored…bored,” muttered Heather. “Why can’t we just go to class? Sometimes school’s do too much,”
“Yeah,” I agreed. “School can be crummy that way.”
Heather took her cell phone out, risking the possibility of having the phone taken.
“Careful Heather,” I advised her. “It’s against the school rules to have your phone out. If a teacher sees you they might take it.”
“I wish they would try to take my phone,” she dared and then laugh. “Keep a look out for me, will you Amanda?”
I nodded and scanned the gymnasium. Usually the principal began these meetings by welcoming everyone back and asking a few students how their summer went. He then would go on to talk about all the great things we had to look forward to this school year and how we should work hard. It was honestly very boring and unnecessary, since most of the things they spoke to us about were common sense.
I glanced over at Heather, who was searching the web on her phone, and seized the opportunity to admire her beauty. Heather had long silky blonde hair that stretched down her back to her waist. Today she had her hair hanging down and her bangs were fluffed out to conceal her forehead.
She had crystal blue eyes that illuminated her gorgeous face. I wasn’t sure what Heather did, but her face was perfectly clear of acne and she had a natural complexion that wasn’t too pale. She wasn’t too skinny, like some girls who barely ate anything, but she couldn’t be classified as fat either. If anyone were to take one look at her they would consider her to be quite healthy.
I felt slightly jealous of her gorgeous, model appearance, but it wasn’t a big aspect of me that interfered with our friendship. She was just someone that all girls would admire and boys would pursue.
The remarkable thing about Heather was that she knew how to use her looks to get whatever it was she wanted. A few times when we went shopping and our bill was slightly higher than what we could afford, she would sweet talk the clerk to let it off and it usually almost always worked.
I had been so focused on Heather’s appearance that I hadn’t even noticed that she had looked up from her phone and was staring across the gymnasium.
“Who is that?” Heather asked in a seductive manner.
I followed her gaze across the gym to see who she had been looking at. There was a large group of teachers entering the gym and taking their seat in the middle of the chairs that were lined up in the center of the gymnasium for them. They usually had to attend this lecture too.
“Who?” I asked unsure of which of the teachers she was indicating. There were about thirty of them occupying the many seats.
“That guy,” she said pointing. “With the blue shirt and the jeans. Do you see him? He has black hair. You can’t miss him, he’s like really attractive.”
I scanned the teachers and my eyes landed on the one she was talking about and at the sight of him my heart beat became abnormally fast.
“You mean Mr. Richwood?” I asked nervously.
“Is that his name?” she marveled. “Wow, he is hot. Is he a teacher here?”
“Yes, that’s where all the teachers sit.”
My eyes darted from Mr. Richwood to Heather, who had abandoned her phone and was now watching my favorite teacher with acute curiosity. She didn’t say anything, but from the look on her face I could tell she was checking him out.
After about five minutes of ogling him she turned to me and asked me a question.
“What subject does he teach?”
“Art,” I said confidentially.
“Art,” she grinned. “I’m so glad that I took an Art class.”
“You didn’t want to,” I said in a low voice.
“Huh?” Heather asked, not looking at me and beginning to twirl her hair with her finger.
“I was the one who persuaded you take Art,” I reminded her. “Remember, you said drawing is a waste of time. Then I said you should try it and you said you would do it, but only so we could be in the same class. Remember?”
“Oh yeah,” Heather said, suddenly remembering. She came right out and said what was on her mind. “He’s too hot to be a teacher.” She was silent for a moment and then said, more to herself than to me. “He’s mine,”
My heart jumped at her statement. I couldn’t believe what I had heard her say.
"Wait, what did you say?” I asked nervously.
“I said,” Heather repeated as she turned to face me. “That he’s mine. I’m going to make him fall for me.”
“But Heather, he’s a teacher. He’s not like the boys in this school,”
“I don’t care. Listen Amanda, I’ve never been rejected by a man. If I want a guy, they either come to me or I go to him. I’ll bet you by the end of the school year, he’ll be mine. I believe I can tame his heart. Trust me, I know what I’m doing.”
I wasn’t sure how anyone else would react if one of their friends said this to them, but I wasn’t sure what to say. I felt my heart sinking because there was a reason why I felt the way that I did.
I didn’t like the idea of Heather claiming she could “tame” the heart of Mr. Richwood because the thing was…that I liked him. He had been my favorite teacher since I had him last year and I had sort of developed a slight crush for him. The idea of promiscuous, flirtatious Heather making him fall for her was unsettling. I wasn’t sure what to say.
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