One in a Million

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic
Cate, a loner at her school, never thougt she could be pretty, or have any friends at all... until the day she met Patrick, who turned her thoughts all around.

Submitted: January 05, 2008

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Submitted: January 05, 2008

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Cate stared straight down the narrow hallway, trying not to make eye contact with any of the monotonous teenagers going o opposite direction. She spent her days avoiding them, not allowing to see her inner self, merely letting them see a loner girl, lost in the shadow of her older Sister Claire. She kept to her daydreaming of Cinderella and Prince Charming and all other fairytale lives she wished were hers. She knew fairy tales weren’t real, or at least, could never be in her life.

She stopped at her locker, and took a quick look around her. There were the popular girls, with their gorgeous boyfriends, the band kids, all together in their large unity of friendship, The music lovers, where she belonged, if she wasn’t oh so afraid of letting out, the nerds, where she could also fit in, and then there was her. The outcast, basically banned from all aspects of life in the high school world.

Suddenly a tap on her shoulder interrupted her deep, depressing thoughts. Her sister Claire stood their. Her beautiful, expensive, pink wardrobe and gorgeous made up face was enough to make any girl envy her. She looked out of place, talking to a girl dressed in last years clothes, with not a bit of beauty in her face.

“Hey! What’cha been up to today, girly?” She said in her high pitched, happy voice. It as enough to make Cate gag, but she admired the kindness in her sister and smiled.

“I’ve almost found a way to end world hunger, I’ve written half of the Great American Novel, made pies for homeless children and knitted you a scarf.” She may have admired her sister’s kindness, but she never passed up the chance to make a sarcastic remark.

“Well that’s just peachy!” Sarcasm was the only love her and her sister really shared. “While your baking pies for the homeless kids, I’ll need you to make one for Jeffy and me. But listen, I think I‘ve found a boy who‘s perfect for you! I mean really, perfect. He‘s Jeffy‘s little cousin and he‘s moving here from a small county in Ohio and it would mean a lot to us if you would just see him once, maybe be his first new friend.”

Cate seriously did want to gag now. The thought of dating anyone related to ‘Jeffy’ was out of the question. She could barely watch him eat at their dinner table, image someone less mature eating around her.

“I think I’ll pass on that. I would love to help, but anything, I mean anything, but that.”

“Well listen if you change your mind, you know where to find us. Just consider it will ya. It really would mean a lot.”

I won’t she thought as she shouted “I will.” Her sister strutted off into her kingdom. She basically was the princess of the school; Cate being the ugly step-sister.

 

“Hurry up!” Claire yelled at Cate as she was headed out the door, “They’re here!”

“I’m coming! Give me a second! Geez!” Cate had no idea what she was doing. After three days of nothing but begging she finally gave into her Sister and agreed to go out with Jeff’s cousin.

Claire burst through her sister’s door. “What’s taking you so long? Do you even no how to use make up?”

“No! I’ve never had to use it before! Maybe if you would have listened to me when I told you that, they wouldn’t be out there waiting on us!”

“Well you’re a girl, I figured it was, like, encoded in your DNA. No one ever taught me.” Claire took the lipstick out of her sister’s hand and showed her how to apply it. It was as if doing this was encoded into her DNA. Her hands moved gracefully across the make up pallet. If only she could be as artistically pretty as her sister.

As her sister finished putting on the finishing touches of her make up she began to imagine the evening. They were going to a small pizza parlor at the end of town, then to a movie. She wanted her date to be a sweet charismatic boy, who would like her for who she was, though she figured the chances of that happening were a million to one. She wished more than imagined he would be dressed in normal, but dressy attire. He would play a song on the contemporary juke box at the parlor and they would dance the night away, forgetting about the pizza Cate knew would be the doom of her first date. She was a little terrified of eating in front of people.

“Smile.” her sister said, interrupting her thoughts of happiness. “You’re all done, now let’s go, we’ve kept them waiting long enough.”

Cate grabbed her purse and headed out the doorway, too afraid to see what she looked like in the mirror. She knew she didn’t look date worthy, and was just anxious for the night to end.

 

“Do you like the pizza?” Patrick, Cate’s date, asked. “You’ve barely eaten any.”

“It’s fine, I’m just not that hungry, that’s all.” She answered in a timid voice. She knew he could tell she was extremely nervous. He, on the other hand, ate away.

Dating probably isn’t new to him, she thought. After all, he was an extremely handsome boy. His Red-blonde hair fell just below his deep blue eyes. Cate saw them as pools that once you fell in to, there was no getting out. He wasn’t very muscular, but she could tell by his face that he was strong, and he was tall. Yet only a few inches taller than Cate, who was around 5’5”.

“So,” he said, with a long silence following, “What’s school like? Am I to be anxious about starting next week, or completely terrified?”

“Nothing to be really terrified of,” Unless you’re afraid of people, she thought. “If you hang around the right crowd, you’ll get through it pretty easy, I guess.”

“What about you? Are you in the right crowd I should be with?” She sensed a little flirting in his tone, which was a first for her. It was actually a bit scary.

“Not really, I sort of go my own way, you know, against the crowds.”

“So you’re spontaneous?”

“No exactly.”

“Come on, you have to tell me what you’re like. Maybe it will make you less nervous.”

Telling you would only make me more nervous, she said in her mind. “I guess you could say I’m a bit of everything, but what about you, where will you fit in at?” she was glad she finally came up with a way to turn the subject off of her.

“Well, um-”

“Hey you two love birds,” Jeff said as he came over to check on us, “Having a good time?”

Patrick smiled at him and nodded. That must be code for I hate this girl get me out of here! She felt there may have actually been a connection between them, but her mind overruled her heart and said otherwise.

“Well if we’re going to make the movie we’ll have to be going, so grab your things and come out to the car.” She saw Jeff smile at Patrick and felt like the dorkiest girl in the world.

 

 

At the movies they sat with Claire and Jeff. Cate felt so embarrassed she could barely comprehend what was going on in the movie. She felt something on her shoulder and saw Patrick trying to put his arm around her. She was open to his idea. He made her feel happy, which was a feeling she rarely let show. She knew he would be good for her. But what happens when he starts school and sees me as the loner girl? She couldn’t let him get too attached to her. She knew once he saw her at school, without popularity or even friends he would ditch her for something better. She had to end this right now.

“Excuse me.” She said as she narrowed her way out of the isle. Clair was too busy with ‘Jeffy’ to even notice her sister get up and leave. She stayed in the lobby for half the movie until Patrick came out looking for her.

“What’s wrong? Why’d you leave?” he asked, he actually looked concerned for her.

“I felt sick, it was too crowded. I’m somewhat claustrophobic.”

“Oh.”

“You can go back in and watch the rest of the movie, I don’t want to spoil your night.”

“It’s fine, I came out with you tonight anyway.”

Dang it! Why does he have to be sweet. He must thing I’m popular, or something. “Look, I don’t really think we should see any more of each other after this. Um,” she thought for a moment, “It’s not you, it’s me.”

“Wow, the most famous break up line on just the first date. I must be as big of a loser as I thought I was.” He turned and walked back into the room they were showing the movie in.

Ha, you the loser? I don’t think so.

 

“So” Claire looked excited and happy the next day as she danced into her sister’s room, “what happened last night with Patrick? Was it la-la-la-la-love at first sight?”

“Ha, yeah. We can play pretend if you really want to.”

“What happened?”

“Well he hated me, so I left and stayed in the lobby.”

“He hated you?!”

“Yep.”

“Hold on.” Claire took her cell phone out of her pocket and dialed a number. Cate knew she was in trouble now. “Hey Jeffy Weffy” The feeling of nausea came back over Cate. “I hear that your cousin hated my sister last night. Yep, that’s what she said. Oh really? I knew that couldn’t be true. Sure I’ll text it to you. Of course she’ll text him back, if he’s not too hurt that is.” She shot an evil glance at Cate. “Bye”

“Oh yeah he hated you a lot! So much that he practically begged Jeff’s mom into sending him back to Ohio because none of the people here would give him a chance!”

“I couldn’t let him start liking me, It would have hurt both of us when he started school off on the wrong foot with the outcast!”

Claire’s fingers were going fast across the keypad of her cell phone. “I’m giving Patrick your number and you’re going to apologize to him!”

“Don’t you think that will make him feel worse?!”

“No! You really like this boy, I can tell! Do you really think he would want to leave because you don’t like him if he wanted to date some other girl?”

“He think I’m something that I’m not and he can do way better than me! Now if you‘ll excuse me I feel I need to listen to some music alone!”

Her sister left her room as she stuck an alternative rock CD in the CD player and turned it up as loud as she could. The lyrics took to her and she started singing loudly, until her phone started to make her text messaging ringer.

“Hey its Patrick. What are you up to?” she read on her phone as she pondered what to say back. She was amazed that he didn’t use that annoying text message lingo all the other kids their age used.

“I think it’s better if we don’t talk.

“ Why?”

“Once you start school you’ll find better girls than me, You’re not losing much.”

“How so? Why can‘t you just talk to me?”

“If you really must know why I can’t talk to you I’ll tell you.”

“Tell me!”

“I’m an outcast at my school. I’m sure you were popular at your old school, and want to be popular here too. Don’t start off on the wrong foot with me.”

“Haha! Me? Popular? That’s a good one!”

“What?”

“I live here with my aunt now, I had to leave my old school because everyone made fun of me! Listen meet me down town later so we can talk. I have to go now.”

That text message surprised Cate. Could he really not have had any friends? How does a boy like that go on without any friends? He could have easily been one of the most popular guys anywhere.

 

“I don’t see why I have to drive you down town to see a boy who despises you.” Claire said sarcastically at her sister. Cate just rolled her eyes. She had been thinking a lot about Patrick not having an friends. Her imagination had been running wild with an explanation for it. Maybe there was something wrong with him, or maybe he was like her. Maybe he was afraid of people and drowned al his sorrows in music. Maybe they were the perfect couple.

“You know, you are the perfect couple.” Claire butted between her and her thought. There must have been some look on her face that showed what she was thinking.

“How can you be so sure?”

“He’s the only person you’ve ever really talked to without being extremely shy.” She had a point. She was never really shy with Patrick. Opening up came naturally with him. He just seemed easy to talk to.

“Well, we’re here. Now get out of my car before I kick you out.” Claire said with a smile on her face. Even though her and Cate were different she still cared about her.

Cate walked through the door of the pizza parlor she had been to the night before on their double date. She saw Patrick sitting alone in a booth. She stopped for a moment to really just look at him. He had the same look on his face she wore everyday. Scared, trying to avoid eye contact with others. It was the look of fear. He had an iPod in his ear, looking solely at the lit up screen in front of him. His hair covered his eyes so that, if he did look around, he still wouldn’t be able to make any eye contact.

She slowly approached the booth, thoughts and visions running through her mind. What if something was wrong with him and he didn’t tell her about it. What if he had anger issues or something else that could lead to someone getting hurt. As she was in front of him he looked up from the iPod and acknowledged her presence.

 

“Hey,” she started the conversation off “You wanted to talk. I’m here. Talk.”

“It’s not that easy,” He said. “I’m hurt that you would think I wouldn’t like you because you’re not some popular girl. Did I really come off as that sort of guy?” There was true hurt in his eyes. Hurt she never thought she could cause a guy like him.

“Well no, not really, but-”

“Just because my cousin dates popular girls like your sister, doesn’t mean I have to too. I really like you. You’re pretty and down to earth.”

Oh my gosh, did he just say pretty? Yes, Oh my he did! Either this guy needs glasses or I should buy a mirror!

“I really liked you too, but you just don’t look like the type of guy to go for just any girl.”

“You’re not just any girl.”

“Tell that to the people at my school. They’ve never given me a chance. When do you start again?”

“Monday, but I have an idea. On Monday we can both try to make friends. The same friends. If we open up to others like we opened up to each other who knows. We can be the next generation of popular people.”

“I think that’s an amazing idea.” Cate said, and she didn’t only say that because he was so close to kissing her, but because he gave her the confidence she needed to try new things like make new friends and eat in front of people. She knew in her heart they would make new friends on Monday, and that maybe he was her one in a million.


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