The Queen Bee
She stood in the middle of the basketball court, ball in her hands and trembling. The skies were turning gray, the crows were cawing, mocking at her; or that was what she thought. The concrete floor of the court was wet with several small puddles. The school was quiet, having ended three hours earlier. Leaves rustled coldly in the slight breeze, whispers from the girls at the sidelines pricked her like the ends of sharp sickles, gouging her heart out. The boys were laughing, like vultures feeding on her exposed flesh, enjoying every bit of it, all of them, with the exception of one.
“Stop it guys,” Jeffery said, taking the ball from her.
“Say it, Angel,” one of the guys jeered. She refused to return his gaze. “Say it, or I’ll read it out!” he waved a little pink Hello Kitty notebook in his hands.
Angel stared, her eyes flying to meet Joan’s, who was standing haughtily at the sidelines, her girlfriends flanking her sides. She had been wrong right from the start, wrong to believe that the queen bee would be her very best friend in this new school where she had no friends. But her regret and realization came too late as the boy turned the pages of the little notebook and started reading aloud. A new feeling rose up in her chest: hatred.
Angel sat on the grass, watching Jeffery shoot from the distance. Ten years had passed since that day and they were still playing together alone on the very same basketball court. Every year, without fail, Teachers’ Day was when they would come back to play. The court had changed. The old, run-down nets and stands had transformed into new hoops. Paint no longer peeled from the stands, and the old gray concrete had been painted over with deep mossy green and dark red. The biggest change, however, was the giant concrete building that towered over the basketball court. But no matter how things changed, Angel could still taste the humiliation in the air. No amount of dust or rubble, nor even sands of time, could take that memory away from her. Who cares if they were only eleven? Who cares if children that age forgot the feelings of their peers when excitedly exploring the mysteries of secret admiration and infatuation? Jeffery did not have to know how humiliated she had felt back then, standing in the court and facing the menacing crowd. Much less did he need to know, as he went over to give her a peck on the lips, that she was the one who had planted the cigarettes in Joan’s schoolbag back then, twice, just to get her expelled.
The Queen Bee© 2011 by AubyStories. All rights reserved.