THE ARCHIVES: Chapter 349

Safe

Chaos
filled the halls
as teachers tried to round up
their students.
I stood in an emptying hall,
debating whether
this fire alarm
signaled a drill or whether
a real fire burned
somewhere in the school.
I decided to be safe
and walk outside,
although I stayed far away
from my class.
I eluded those who called my name.
I turned aside from my classmates,
pretended I was invisible,
and blended in with the scuffed walls
and kicked-in lockers.
Being alone was safe.
It always had been.
I did not need to hear
any more gossip today.

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THE ARCHIVES: Chapter 348

Planning

Once I had some time to myself
during the ten-minute break,
I started making a plan.
What can I do about Lindsey?
Can I help her before she hurts herself?
Before she shoots up the school?

A nagging thought in the back of my mind
whispered that this was all a lie—
some kind of prank—
and that I shouldn’t even bother
trying to solve anything.
I ignored it.
This is my purpose.
The ten minutes of planning
went by quickly,
but just before the last minute
was up,
the fire alarm began its piercing shriek.

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THE ARCHIVES: Chapter 347

Another Lie

Gary approached me at school,
and I suddenly hated
his limping, loping walk,
his messy hair,
the just-woke-up lines on his face.
“I heard what you did this past weekend,”
he said.
Is he jealous?
“I was told you did things with him. Did you?”
Seriously?
Someone is still telling lies…

Gary pushed my chin up,
closing my astonished mouth.
“Don’t pretend you don’t know
what I’m talking about.”
He walked away, shaking his head
in disgust or amusement.
I knew I ought to find my ex-crush
and confront him,
but I couldn’t muster the energy
or anger.

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