Again I had packed lunch for myself. PB&J, and also a bag of crushed chips and a half rotten banana. I went into the lunch line, following a girl who had glared at me earlier that day in gym class. Looks as if it still hadn't worn off. Her eyes were scathing as she took a tray from the aid, never taking her eyes off of me.I looked down at my paper bag as we continued to walk through the lunch line, only pausing to look up and grab a chocolate milk from the refrigerator.
When I finally got to the cashier, I was looking foward to seeing Martha again, to talk to someone who would listen. But as I reached the end of the line, a woman said,
"Just type your code in already, kid." Well, I obviously knew this black-haired brown-eyed person was not Martha before I even looked at her. But when I did look up, it was a glare.
"I don't have a code still. Where is the other lunch woman?" My voice was not friendly, and it matched the tone of hers.
"How should I know? I think she took a leave of absence. A week or somethin'. But anyway," she said in her Brooklyn accent, shaking her black hair," youse said youse don't have a code?" I shook my head. I didn't like this person, and I wasn't going to pretend that I did. "Geez, kid. Well, do ya have any monay?" I stuck my hand in my pocket and pulled out my emergency money. She reached out and grabbed a dollar from the wad and put it in the register. I just gaped. Then she looked back at me and said, "Alright, go now." I walked away slowly with my paper bag and milk carton. I heard her mutter something about, "Kids, these days, sheesh!"
So where was Martha? Something must have happened, maybe family? It was none of my business, I dropped it, at least until after lunch. Right then I had something else I needed to do. I scanned the huge room. My eyes rested on the table I had been sitting at for the past week, in the corner, the surrounding tables also empty. Total seclusion. But today my table was not empty. Today a blond hair green-eyed boy sat there, hardly touching the mess of food on his plate.