The dull drone of the Ford's engine was the one thing that kept me awake and aware of the fact that with every second, I was getting closer to that godforsaken school I would soon be attending.
"It's one of the best high schools in the city. A lot of my colleagues have told me that it is well acknowledged within Philadelphia. You'll love it May!"
The fact that I was late on my first day, and additionally with my dad sounding so hyper as he drove us in the small, cramped red Ford, was really quite the irritation. Over breakfast, I had brainstormed all the worst case scenarios that could possibly happen as I make my first entrance into this high school and all of them begun with me being late.
I had pictured that the moment I walked in, everyone would turn to look at me - judgmental eyes fixed on the 'new girl', scrutinizing me from head to toe. What I wore, my posture, the color of my eyes, whether or not "me school bag was 'rad' enough"*. Everything mattered. I'd seen it in the movies, and I'd done it myself. Except I had never been the victim.
"Of course I will dad. I don't really have a choice do I?" I answered him, my tone bitter as I kept my eyes stuck outside the window, refusing to meet my father's gaze. We passed neighborhood upon neighborhood, my dad driving dreadfully slow, probably just to get me into the hyperactive mood he was in before I set step into school. I knew he wanted the best for me but if he'd only considered my wishes from the start, maybe things would have been easier.
"Don't be like that. This is all going to turn out for the best!" he said, turning to look at me briefly.
"How are you even sure of that?" I retorted, crossing my arms tightly in front of my chest.
"Because this is a brand new day. It's another chapter in our life and if we start off on a good foot, it might lead us somewhere great as well. All you need to do is be a little optimistic about this change."
I bit down on my lower lip, hard enough for it to start bleeding as I suppressed a snotty comeback. Luckily for me, I noticed that we had arrived at the school car park. My eyes skimmed over the area through the window. Several cars lined the park, filling it with color, some a lot more expensive than the others. Rich kids' cars no doubt. A sidewalk pathway had been paved to the left of where dad parked, leading down to the main office that was built into a small, square building which was only just a few feet away.
Sighing, I rubbed my palms against my jeans and stepped out, a sudden gust of wind whipping my hair into my face. Placing the strands behind my ears, I turned back to face the car and bent down to meet my father's anxious eyes through the open window.
"Thanks dad. I'll do my best to see things positively." For your sake.
That was as courteous as I could get before I turned my back on him and headed towards the office. I could hear the engine of the car whir to life, as he drove away eventually.
My dad wanted things to go well because this concerned him - but this also involved me. I didn't like being rebellious but things had changed too fast and I feel like I won't be able to cope with all of it.
Yet as my hands curled around the cool metal of the doorknob, goosebumps rose up on my skin. Bracing myself, I whispered, "Here I go."
* The 'me school bag' was intentional and not a mistake I made while writing. Makayla likes the Scots (as do I).