The sound of someone cursing woke me up, I checked my clock and saw it was nine in the morning. I didn't glance at the mirror, aware my blond hair would be sticking out at odd angles. I wiped sleep from my eye and stood up to open the door. Another girl was behind it and jumped back a little in surprise.
“Oh wow. Sorry for waking you up,” she said with a smile, seeing my tired expression.
“It's okay,” I replied sleepily.
“I thought this was my room. Sorry,” she explained sheepishly. She had black dyed hair with streaks of green through them. Her clothing certainly screamed goth as well.
“Guess we're neighbours then, my name's Michelle,” I said with my own laugh. I left the room to help her with her bags. She mumbled thanks.
“I'm Poppy by the way,” she said as she opened the next door. The name was definitely at odds with her appearance.
“Nice to meet you,” I said with a wave.
I went back into my room and grabbed my stuff for a shower. This time there were a lot of others in the bathroom so I made a point of getting sorted fast. When I was finished drying and getting dressed I headed for the door. I might be able to convince Poppy to explore the college grounds with me.
“Just as a recommendation, I wouldn't wear that skirt. It just screams rich spoilt girl,” someone called behind me as I grabbed the doorknob. I glanced over my shoulder, completely shocked someone would say that. The girl was the kind that looked fresh and polished, out of a magazine. So why did she care what some other girl wore? And it's not like Cambridge was exactly a stranger to rich kids.
“My point being,” she started to explain when she saw my confused expression.
“That it's something you're clearly not. I'm guessing somewhere in the country. Maybe even grew up on a farm,” she said, her friends laughing at her sides. I felt my cheeks flush and left without replying. So what if I had grown up in the countryside? The city didn't seem all that scary or hard to navigate. And as far as clothes were concerned, I was just trying to look presentable. I clenched my fists as I walked back to me room. I wished I'd been able to come up with some smart retort. I put my stuff back in my room and knocked on Poppy's door. Already I could hear loud rock music emanating from inside.
“Come in!” she yelled over the music. The once neat room had been completely changed. Posters of various bands plastered the walls. Her wardrobe was bursting with stuff. I saw she had a sewing machine as well as a laptop on her desk.
“I'm guessing you're doing art then?” I asked and she laughed.
“Yeah, I want to set up my own line one day,” she said with a grin. She rummaged in her bags before handing me a heavy sketch pad that weighed a ton. Inside were sketches upon sketches of designs and stuck to the pages were different fabrics and pattern designs.
“These are good,” I murmured. I'd never been that into the scene but I'd always had a secret admiration for some of the clothing. Of course in my middle of nowhere town, it was a bit too out there to wear that sort of stuff. So I never bought it.
“Thanks, Page twenty-one,” she said. I blinked at her before turning to the page. The dress was a mostly black design made with a corset, lace and a long dress underneath that slanted to one side as it fell.
“It's nice but simplistic,” I commented, not trying to be insulting with the words. She laughed.
“Glad you like it. I thought it'd suit you the moment you walked in,” she said with a grin. I blinked at her and looked at the design again. It would be nice to wear it, but also a little too adventurous on my part.
“Maybe, but I think I'll stick to my jeans and simple tops for now,” I said. I pointed at my pale green top that proclaimed in scrawl that I was a Geek, making her laugh.
“Did you see this thing? 'Cause it'd be nice not to go alone,” Poppy said, showing me a flyer. I hadn't seen it, but it looked like a good way to start meeting people.
“Deal. But you have to make this dress by the end of the year so I can prove it won't suit me,” I joked. She considered, her head moving from side to side with a frown.
“I was kidd-” I began
“No, I'll do it. And when it does suit you, you are being my model!” she yelled, jumping up and down with excitement. I felt my face pale, what had I gotten myself into it? And it was only day one.