So, this week's Red Writing Hood fiction challenge was to craft a villain.The story went in a different direction than I had anticipated, but I enjoyed this voice nevertheless.
I need some feedback. Believable character? Suggestions for where to go next? I don't want her to be a stereotype, and I appreciate your thoughtful feedback, as always.
I slump in the padded, orange chair, folding and refolding the hall slip. The empty desk in front of me is spotless, with the exception of a box of Kleenex, presumably for "releasing my feelings." There's also a manila folder with my name neatly written along the label.
Is this my fabled permanent record? I consider taking a peek--although aside from a few tardies to sixth period Geometry, it couldn't tell much of a tale. I cover my bases.
Besides, it's all a bunch of crap anyway. The "permanent record" doesn't mean shit unless you're convicted---and even that can get sealed once you're eighteen.
I glance once again at the hall slip,which summoned me to the office of Frankie Paris, school counselor. It figures I would be pulled out of ceramics---the one hour a day where I don't want to crawl into my eardrum.
God, I hate school. Moving from one room to the next, like worms crawling out of a carcass, only to fester and decay in another classroom. Geometry. Slither. Decay. American Literature. Ooze. Decompose.
And now, here I am, surrounded by rah-rah posters touting scholarships and camps for "exceptional students." Yeah. Not me. A solid "C" student, I sit quietly, do my work, and hate everybody.
I glance at the clock. I've been sitting here in Overachiever Hell for fifteen minutes. Where the fuck is she? Why can't I just gargle a chainsaw and get this over with?
The clock ticks. I imagine my body breaking down her chair, like these mushrooms I saw eating away at this old stump in my backyard. I wish that I could break it all down, grind this entire place to dust.
The bell rings--ceramics is over, and my normal self would be slithering to gym. I've been sitting that class out, lounging on the bleachers with the Muslim girl presently fasting for Ramadan and kid who runs stick-pins through his fingertips the entire hour. Bunch of fucking losers---but stick-pin kid has some good ideas.
Finally, the door bursts open, and Ms. Paris bounds in. "Kayla! I'm so sorry I'm late!" She smiles, in what is supposed to be a "aren't-I-adorable?" expression. Maybe it worked about ten years ago.
She's wearing a KHS Knights polo shirt and pleated khaki pants. Her blond hair is in a messy bun, held together by two pencils. Black traces of eyeliner nest in her crows feet.
This is my authority figure.
"So," Mrs. Paris says, "How are you, Kayla? I realize that we're halfway through your junior year, and we've never had a chance to chat. I try to talk to all my students."
I say nothing, returning to my hall-pass origami Silence is one of the most efficient ways to fuck with adults.I know how to play it just right, tuning it like a passive-aggressive violin. If you hold onto it too long, the adults start blabbing on about "Respect" and "Looking them in the eye." Then you get a note in the permanent record. But if you hold it just a bit too long, it's a lot of fun.And very effective.
She coughs, awkwardly, and says, "So, how do you like your classes?"
"They're okay," I reply.
"Anything you want to talk about?" she asks, "Have you thought about your plans for the future?"
"Not really," I say. "Maybe college, I don't know."
She starts babbling about the PSAT and the SAT, about financial aid and early acceptance, all of which is stupid and pointless, because I'm not going to do any of it.
I've got other ideas. Not Columbine-crazy ideas.
My ideas are delicate and deadly. My ideas will soon take root. My ideas will slowly, with white-topped fury, break this place down until it is nothing but dust.