There's Something About HimMature

Beth moves to America when her father gets himself a new job, after moving, things don't always turn out the way she thinks they will

Chapter 1-A New Everthing

“What do you mean, your new job means we have to move?”

“I meant,” my Dad said to me, “that we’re moving, I got offered a job as head master of a new school.”

“Yes, I know, you said,” I replied slightly stonily, “where’re we moving too anyway, Manchester, Middlesbrough, Morpeth?” I put the last one in hopefully then I could still go to the school that I was going to at the moment.

“No darling,” my Mam cut in, “it’s in America, it’s a town called Harlow’s Vale, it’s about ten miles from the Pacific Ocean, it’ll be a great start for us all honey.”

“We don’t need a new start, or at least I don’t,” I glared, tears running down my face, I didn’t want to leave my home, I’d lived here for all my life, I didn’t want to leave my friends, I knew it was selfish because it was my dad’s dream job to run a school, but still, America! Please, I know I’m very, very prejudice about most Southerners never mind Americans, then a thought came to me.

“What about Darcy,” Darcy is my horse, and I very special horse at that, she’s very old, older than me, 22, a thorough bread horse, 18 hands 2, big I know but she’s my baby, I love her too bits, I’ve had her since I was about 11 so 5 years, cause I am now 16, 17 in October. “Darcy can come with us, honey.” my Mam reasoned.

“Okay then, what about my A-levels, I’ve already started my coursework,” I said, a tad smugly I might add.

“That won’t matter, the education system is different in America, it’ll be fine, and uh, Beth…we‘re moving in two weeks” my dad said. I didn’t have a come back for that one, I considered shouting, “So’s your face!” but I decided against it, it wouldn’t particularly help the situation. Instead I just ran out of the house and up across to another estate in the area where my best friend, Katie Smith, lived.

“Your moving to America!” she practically screamed when I told her the news, I was sitting in her bedroom, it was a very small bedroom so we were both sitting on the bed. “Yeah, suck’s doesn’t it,” I replied gloomily. “God no,” she said, I gave a sceptical look but she continued, “come on Beth, it’s America, it’ll be so cool, as long as I can come and visit.” she hinted

“Of course you can come and visit, it’s just that I’ll miss everything over here, the air, the shopping, even school in some ways I suppose, all our friends.”

“I know Beth, but you’ll have to go, just think of the weather and the boys and the shopping.”

“But Katie, the weather’s just the same as it is across here accept the winters are colder, not that I mind or anything, you know I like the cold but I prefer the normal English fashion compared to the American stuff were every things made for like people who are a size 4 and the sizes are different, how the hell am I gonna know what a size 12 is and the boys will all have stupid American accents, you know I can’t stand some of the accents you get over there.”

“You never know Beth, someone may catch your eye, they may not be as anal or as arrogant as the guys over here are you know.”

“I suppose,” I stared at the blank TV screen in thought, Katie had a point, I might just as well look at some of the bright sides, there should be a few cute boys over there at least, I mean our school is classed as a really big school in England, 673 people, that’s classed a tiny school in America, so there were gonna be a lot more guys. “Cachou bitch, I new I could get you to see the bright side of things.”

I burst out laughing, I new Katie was right, and she also new that when ever she says, “Cachou bitch!” I crack up. Katie new me better then anyone and she new that I didn’t want to go but I would go to make my dad happy. “When are moving?” Katie asked in a more subdued tone.

“Two weeks.” I said, almost on the verge of tears again, Katie came over and gave me a hug. I checked her clock, 6:30, “I need to go and get Darcy in,” I said, the stables were a few miles away, I decided to walk, “you want to come?” I asked.

“Sure,” Katie replied, she’d known Darcy the same as me since we’d been friends for like ever.

“Mint, come on then, we’re walking.”

“Cool,” Katie said. So we set of to the stables at a steady pace, I put some music on my phone, Guns n Roses (they kick ass), and we had a bit of a sing-song, it was fun, it was normal and normal was gonna take a bit of a rocking in two weeks time, I new that much. My only worry was that Darcy wouldn’t survive the trip because she‘s so old. I didn’t want her to die under the sleeping drugs, that was the thing that scared me the most, losing Darcy.

We got the stables and Darcy was waiting by the gate of her field, most of the other horses were already in there stable, well they all were, I was a tad late, I usually get her in at like 5:30, I’m gonna guess that she’ll be a tad narked. She is, oh well, I’ll just get annoyed looks from her over the next few days. I led her into her stable while Katie made up her diner. We groomed her, I picked her feet and then finally we gave her her diner and we threw a few carrots in after it for good measure, it should soften her up a bit.

I walked into the house at 8:30 and went straight to the kitchen, I was hungry so I started to make myself some quick cook pasta and I put some mascarpone sauce in the microwave to heat up. My Mam came in as I jumped up to sit on the kitchen bench with my diner and began to eat it. “I know you don’t want to move, but it’s a really good opportunity for your dad honey,” she said.

“I know,” I said, “I don’t mind moving, it’s just I won’t know anyone, and I won’t know where I am and I’ll sound so different to everybody else, it’ll be worse than going to a private school in London, and, to be honest I’m gonna miss everyone over here.”

“It’ll be fun, a fresh start, you can meet loads of new people, even if they’re American, they might surprise you, and, hey, there might be a few cute boys.”

“Mam, you sound like Katie, and that’s degusting, they’ll all be like half your age.”

“I have a point though honey, you could find a nice boy, bring him to meet us…”


“Alright, alright. I’ll let you eat, but I have a point though.” My Mam walked out the room and left me chewing my food while contemplating what she had just said.

The next two weeks past really quickly, packing, final flight checks, getting Darcy sorted out, you know, like finding her a local stable, we got lucky on that one, there are some stables just outside of the town, they sound good and we got her vet and the sleeping drug thing sorted out. Also my dad got me enrolled in the local high school, he was going to be headmaster at the local junior high, what ever that is. There’s like 256 Junior’s at Harlow’s Vale High School, well 257 now, that’s like quadruple the amount of 6th former‘s on my year.

It was horrible saying goodbye to all my friends, I got a load of hugs though, which made me feel slightly better, my last day was a Wednesday cause we needed to unpack before me and my dad started school on the Monday morning, I hate new schools, I mean you don’t know anybody, and the American time tables are so different. They have lessons like Calculus and Gym, I know that Gym is proberly PE, but I’m not sure about Calculus, I think it’s Maths or something. I wonder if I can take Music or something, I hope I can, I love singing, I think I’m quite good, people say I am.

The flight’s horrible, I’ve been allowed to stay with Darcy in the cargo bay, the air attendants don’t mind, I think, well it’s tuff to them if they don’t anyway because if they think that they’re going to take me away from my baby when she’s all drugged up then they have another thing coming to them (plus I don‘t think they want anything the size of Darcy getting freaked if she comes up early). I wonder if I’ll get teased about my accent, I mean there’s nothing wrong with it, even though most of the north don’t like the southerners, they seem to like it but the Americans won’t be used to the Northumbrian accent cause they proberly all think we talk like the upper class in the early 20th century. I suppose I’ll just have to put up with it. If they have a good music department then that’ll be okay, I can usually get along with musically clued up people, even if they are American.

Darcy’s in her new stable now, she seems settled in but I can feel the nerves rolling of her in waves, I’ve been allowed to stay with her for the night, not on the floor obviously cause that would have been dangerous, there’s this ledge in each of the stables that’s six foot long and 3 foot across. It was a really good idea that the owner’s of the stables came up with because, if your horse is injured or in my case has moved stables then they tend to settle quicker in are less stressed if there owner stops with them, they keep sleeping bags there and everything. There are loads of fields too, really big ones full of grass and each stable had it’s own little tack cupboard next to it, I’ve already unpacked all of Darcy’s stuff and the lady that was here tonight, I think she’s one of the owners and she told me which patch to put her in in the morning and where the hay and straw is and stuff like that. So far everyone seems to be quite nice, but I haven’t met any of the actual other horse owners yet, I’m dreading that, not as much as I’m dreading Monday though, it’s Thursday night now, 3 days till Monday.

The house is absolutely massive, my room is the size of the living room and kitchen in my old house, and I thought they were big, well they were big rooms, our house back in England was in a terrace and we were in the larger of the different sized terrace houses. It feels very big, too big, when I get all the boxes empty it should be better. It’s so strange having a walk in wardrobe, well I suppose the Americans would call it a closet, all my clothes fit in it so that’s okay it just seems strange not having a wardrobe in the corner of my room, I do have my old chest of drawers though. We left my bed back in England and my new one is a double, it looks so big, it’s got a gorgeous wooden frame, my Dad must be making a load of money cause if he wasn’t we’d never be able to afford every thing that we’ve bought over here.

Everything in my room is practically new, new bed, new TV, new dressing table, new sofa, new book shelves, I’ve got the same laptop but I’ve got I new faster connection to the internet, new carpet for my room, it’s blue and my Dad even bought me a new electro acoustic guitar to practise my singing with, the boxes were just my boxes of crap. The same goes for my Mam and Dad’s room, they’ve basically got new everything in there, they also have there own bathroom and there’s one downstairs. My Mam also ordered a new kitchen which is coming tomorrow because there was no kitchen in the house when we got here. We have the same dining room table and chairs, there this oak affair and we kept the living room sofas but we bought a new TV, a 42 inch plasma, it’s well cool, and also my dad got us a new DVD cabinet so that’s full of stuff already. The best part though, is that I’m gonna start learning to drive, even though I’m only sixteen the laws are different here, I can get my learners permit and then take my test when I turn seventeen, which is like at the end of October, which gives me around six weeks, hopefully I’ll be ready to take it, everyone says I’m a fast learner.

Anyway, my Dads bought me a 1986 Range Rover that he got really cheap at the second hand car dealers in town, I love it, it’s a really dark gray and I know I would survive a crash in it. School’s like a few miles away so Mam’s going to give me a lift until I can actually drive. I can’t wait to learn, I guess I’ll probably be like the only junior that can’t drive though, oh well, I’ll learn soon enough.

My new school is massive, since there’s like double the pupils the school is double the size of my old one. My Mam dropped me off at the main reception, it had one desk in and some chairs, the lady behind the desk gave me may new time table, well, schedule as they say over here in America. I suppose I had a rather good day, it was better than I hoped, I didn’t really talk to anyone because a completely withdrew inside myself, not that anybody even tried to talk to me. The weird little English girl. I had English first lesson, it wasn’t that boring, I had to make notes which was strange and I had to listen to a lecture on A Midsummer’s Nights Dream by Shakespeare. The teacher was alright, he didn’t make me stand in front of the class like I thought he would, I think he’s called Mr. Kane, and his voice doesn’t drone on like my English teacher’s voice did back in England.

The rest of the day didn’t pass in a blur but it didn’t move that fast either, I had Maths, or as they say over here “Calculus”, for an hour with a teacher called Ms. Parry, who I don’t really like now because of the fact that she made me stand in front of the class and introduce myself. I then had Economics (no idea what it is really, I think it‘s like Law or something) followed by my “Elective course”, which was Band. It was really quite good, it’s like a class of different bands really so the class is really small, there’s 4 bands in my year, two indie bands a rock band and a metal band, lucky for me the rock band needed a new singer because there last one moved away at the beginning of last summer. They do the basic stuff, Guns n Roses, Aerosmith, Paramore and there the typical band as well. The drummers the most horrible guy I’ve ever met, the guitarists have ego’s bigger with the school, always trying to out do each other even though there best friends and all three of them walk all over there bassist, it must be a guy thing. I new the lyrics to most of there songs, we performed Sweet Child O’ Mine at the end of the lesson, I think I pulled it off and the drummer from the metal band looked impressed, I think she was called Karen, or something.

I found my way to library at lunch, I couldn’t be bothered to eat, I never had lunch at home, the library was quite well stocked but I couldn’t be bothered to do a proper recky, I decided to do it tomorrow. I had science after, lunch and we were doing a biology topic, Mr. Farrell, my bio teacher, was another teacher to get me introduce myself in the front of the class, I did, stuttering a few times again, this time I noticed a few people cringing at me, I guessed that it was my accent, it was not a very nice feeling. After I was done I went to my place at the back of the class, I was partnered with the drummer from the metal band, Karen Jackal, I didn’t bother talking to her, I didn’t have the courage yet, so I concentrated on the lecture, it was on the DNA structure and base codes and stuff.

I had PE last, I had it every day last lesson, my teacher didn’t make me join in because I didn’t have anything to change into but I still enjoyed watching my classmates play hockey, I enjoy hockey, I played attack at home in England, I was looking forward to it tomorrow. The only thing about my time table was that it was so repetitive, I had the same lesson every day with no change where as in England I had different lessons nearly everyday, even in sixth form. I missed England now I realised, I’d only been away a few days and I already missed the English simplicity that could only be found in Northumbria, I was home sick. This was home now though.

My Mam picked me up outside the main reception of the school and we drove home together in silence, she new me well enough to that I would need a think before I could answer any question about my first day of high school. We got home and I started to make a sandwich, The new kitchen was finally in properly and it was all shiny and new, I didn’t want to touch anything in case I broke it. I was sitting on the bench halfway through my sandwich with a glass of orange juice next to me before my Mam asked me, “So how was your first day of school?”

“It was alright I suppose. I think it’s gonna get a bit repetitive though,” I replied

“And is that good or bad?”

“Good and bad, good because I have music and PE everyday, bad because I also have maths everyday too.”

“That’s only a small downside though, so, did you make any new friends.”

“No, I didn’t really talk to anybody at all, the libraries quite good though.”

“You better not hide out in the library, you should at least try to make some friends honey.”

“I know, I might talk to my lab partner tomorrow.”

“That’s my girl, you got any homework.”

“Yeah, some math, and I need to learn the lyrics to I Believe In A Thing Called Love, but I’ll do that tonight after I’ve took Darcy in.”

“Okay honey, do you want me to give you a lift down.”

“No, it’s okay, I’ll walk down after I’ve eaten my sandwich, It shouldn’t take me two long to get there.”

“Okay,” and my Mam walked out of the kitchen into the living room and started reading the paper.

I finished my sandwich and drink and walked to the stables, it wasn’t a long walk but it gave me time to think about how I was going to approach Karen tomorrow, I didn’t know whether to do it in band or science, by the time I decided I was at the stables, I decided science. I walked through the main gate shutting it behind me and I walked around a corner to check Darcy’s stable and get her head collar and lead from her tack room when Karen Jackal walked out of the stable next to Darcy’s. I stopped in my tracks and stared dumbfounded, I recovered before she noticed and thought me to be a complete imbecile, she turned as I was walking towards the tack cupboard and smiled, I smiled back. “Your that new kid aren’t you, I sat next to in bio today.” she said.

“Yeah, I’m Beth Johnson, um, hi,” I stuck out my hand and Karen shook it.

“Karen Jackal, nice to meet you”

“You too, which one is your horse?” I asked, feeling a tad stupid as I said it.

“You see the horse in the field closest to us?” I nodded, “That’s my mustang, Olympia and the horse grazing next to it is my brothers horse Steve.”

“They look beautiful.”

“I take it your horse is the massive thorough in the patch.”

“Yeah, she’s called Darcy.”

“Nice name.”


“Your welcome, your English right.”

“Yeah, Northern.”

“That’s why you don’t sound like a snob,” I gave her a confused look, I new what she meant but, how did she really know that all southerners tended to be snobs.

“There’s a girl in the senior class, moved here three years ago, she lived in London and she is a complete arrogant bitch.”

“Most southerners are,” I laughed at myself.

“Do you want to meet my brother?” Karen asked.


“Chris!” she shouted

“What?” a male voice drifted from a stable across the other side of the yard.

“Come out here and meet Beth.” Karen shouted back.

“Coming, give me a minute to put out Steve’s dinner,” Chris said, still shouting.

“Well hurry up.”

We stood in silence, it wasn’t awkward though thankfully, for a few minutes then Chris stepped out of his horses stable and walked over too us in about 4 strides. He was tall, he was very tall. I guessed he was about 6 foot 8 or something, I decided to ask him later. He had black hair like his sister and the resemblance was startling, both with black hair, high cheek bones, dark blue eyes and the same light coloured skin. Karen’s features were soft and gentle and very feminine but Chris’ face completely masculine and angular and strong. “Hi,” I said to Chris

“S’up, I’m Chris Jackal, Karen’s big brother.” he replied.

“By about 10 minutes,” she fumed, “we’re twins.” she added even though she proberly new I would realise.

“Beth Johnson, just moved here from England.”

“Cool, I’m gonna get Steve in, you coming.” he asked his sister.”

“Yeah, I’m coming,” she said as her brother walked to his tack cupboard, “you gonna get Darcy in.”

“Yeah, I’m gonna do her dinner first though.”

“Okay.” Karen turned around and grabbed Olympia’s head collar from inside her tack room. I walked into my own little tack shed put Darcy’s dinner together, got out her grooming kit and put it just outside the door of her stable then grabbed her head collar and headed in the direction of the patch with a carrot. Darcy was in a better mood than I had expected and she took the carrot and let me put her head collar on without any fuss. I led her back towards her stable and got into the yard just as Karen was leading Olympia into her stable.

Once inside my own stable I tied Darcy to the single ring on there, grabbed her brush out of her grooming kit and groomed her. Once I was done I untied her lead, took off her head and shut the lower half of the dividing door behind me. I then put the grooming kit away, grabbed her dinner and threw over the door into the stable and threw the bowl in after it, I got a look of thanks before Darcy dipped her head and the hover noises started. “I’ve never seen anyone give there horse it’s food like that before.” Chris said, I hadn’t heard come up behind me and I jumped so high in the air I could have touched his head. He chuckled at my must have been startled expression.

“Sorry, I have this thing about moving to quietly, seriously though why do you proper throw the food into the stable?” he asked.

“Because Darcy will just try to play with her bowl with the food in it and just end up knocking her food everywhere anyway.” I replied.

“Fare enough, you look really small up against your horse you know.”

“I don’t know actually,” I said a little snippily, “and anyway, no offence or anything, but it’s proberly your height. I’m only 5 foot 5 but your like what 6 foot 7, aren’t you?”

“I’m 6 foot 8 actually, so you proberly are right. Hurry up Karen, I’m sock of waiting for you, the guys are coming round to watch the game and it starts in like half an hour or something!”

“Okay, okay, give me five minutes, I just need to pick her feet and give her her dinner.” Karen’s voice came out of the stable next to me, that reminded me of something.

“Damn!” I exclaimed.

“What is it?” Chris shocked by out burst.

“I for got to pick Darcy’s feet.” I explained.

“Are you even strong enough to pick her feet,” I glared.


“Chris stop picking on Beth please or I may have to punch you.” Karen shouted out from her stable.

“Alright, just a bit of fun though, ay Beth,” even his teasing didn’t really sound nice it was like being teased by an older brother.

“Hmm, I suppose,” and then Karen walked out of the stable shut the door then out the lead and her hoof pick in the tack shed and picked up the bowl of food that was just inside the door. She reopened the stable door and placed the food on the floor of the stable then shut the door, the expected hovering sound followed. We all headed towards the exit of the stable, the twins to there car, a very old BMW M5, it was a light gray colour, very pretty to look at, not as nice as my Jeep though. Chris was already sitting in the car when Karen noticed I was walking.

“You don’t know how to drive yet do you?” she said, understanding of the English driving laws in her eyes.

“Yeah, I own a car, my Dad bought me a massive Jeep when we moved here as a kind of softening up present I suppose,” I said.

“Cool, do you want a lift?” she asked.

“It’s okay, I walked here and I know your brother wants to get home to watch the game.”

“Sod my brother, he can be late, and I want to see where you live for future reference.”

“Um, Okay then.” I walked back to there car and got into the back, I slid into the leather seats and put my seat belt on. Karen was explaining to Chris that they were giving me a lift home whether he liked it or not, I had to stifle a laugh. Even though Chris was the oldest, Karen was clearly the most dominant sibling. “Where do you live Beth?” Chris asked while starting the car.

“65 Jefferson Street in Harlow’s Vale.” I told him.

“Wow, a very big house then,” he pulled out of his parking space and headed for the main road into Harlow’s Vale.

“It’s to big.” I mumbled, trying to make it sound like I wasn’t complaining.

“How so?” Karen asked turning around in the passenger seat to look at me.

“You’ll laugh,” I said a bit embarrassed.

“No we won’t, well I won’t, I can’t guarantee Chris complying with that.”

“You got that right sis.” Chris said with out looking away from the road.

“It’s just that,” I sighed before continuing, “it’s stupid really, it’s just that where I came from only really posh people had houses the size of the one I live in now, and I really like it and everything but it just feels weird being in a house so big when my house was half the size of it back in England, so it feels like it’s too big to my house at the moment”

“Weird,” Chris said, I wasn’t sure whether he was referring to me or thing about the size of the houses back in England.

“That’s a shame,” Karen said, “I think you would like the houses in our town. We live in another little town a few miles away, we don’t have a high school so we go to the one in Harlow’s Vale, not that there’s many of us though, there’s only eight of us and I’m the only girl.”

“Here we are,” Chris said, stopping outside my house, “who’s is the Range Rover?”

“That’s mine, I don’t how to drive it yet though,” I explained.

“Looks like a mint car, `86 isn’t it?”

“Yeah,” I answered.

“I’ll have to get one of the guys to teach you,” Karen said.

“Really?” I said back, not sure if she was being serious or not.

“Yeah,” she assured me. I started getting out the car when Chris said, “Beth,” I turned around to look at him, “Come sit with us at lunch tomorrow.”


“Do you want a lift to school tomorrow?” Karen asked.

“No, it’s okay,” I said, I turned to get out the car again.

“Don’t worry about it,” Chris said, “We’ll pick you up like half an hour before school starts.”

“Thanks, and thanks for the lift home,” I opened the door and got out.

“See you tomorrow!” Karen called after me. I shut the door and waved as Chris pulled away, they turned off at the bottom of the street and I turned and walked down the drive to the house to tell my Mam about how I wouldn’t need a lift in the morning and about my new friends.

Gray Ledger

There was a new girl in school today, Beth something-or-other, English according to Karen and Chris just wouldn’t stop going on about her when we were watching the game, it got a bit annoying in the end. Seriously though, what’s so special about her, she’s only English. She was in my Calculus class and she didn’t look very special, brown hair that hung to about her collar bone, green eye’s, her accent wasn’t what I expected but Chris said that was because she was a northerner. I think he might fancy Beth. He kept on going on about how she has a this beautiful shire horse called Darcy and that her cars is a `87 Range Rover. I was impressed at that, you can hardly ever get those cars now, I still prefer my truck though, a 1971 Ford F100 Ranger, nothing could beat Darren’s Mustang though, it’s a 1970 Mustang Fast Back, its this gorgeous red colour. I remember the day he got it, even Karen had a drool over it, that was a good day.

Speaking of cars and Karen, she kept on going on about how one of us had to teach Beth how to drive, I think we’ll just let Chris do that since he’s so in love with her, and he’s making us meet her tomorrow at lunch, you would think they were getting married or something and we were his family or something. At least this means that Karen will have a friend at school because all of the Harlow’s Vale kids think we’re weird just because we come form a different town, this Beth person wouldn’t have even known this place existed being English. I hope she’s not a snob, the English girl in the senior class is a snob, a bitch too.

I can’t wait for the battle of the bands coming up, it’s an school one this time, apparently, there’s about four schools entering so there’ll proberly be about fifteen or sixteen bands. Once again according too Chris who got the information from Karen, Beth is in the schools rock band, Subject to Hardship, singing apparently, should be interesting to watch. I can’t wait to see Karen’s metal band, Lucifer’s Children, perform there new song, I think it’s by Slipknot, I swear there doing Psychosocial. Should be good.

Looks like I’m going to have to meet this Beth girl tomorrow, should be interesting.

The End

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