Chapter 1 – Suz
I hurried to scribble in the answers, my hands practically flying over the papers as I wrote.
It was five minutes to the bell and I was, once again, sitting in the library, furiously attacking my math homework that was due in T-minus 300 seconds and counting. Needless to say, this wasn’t a rare scene. Every day from 10:00 to 11:00 I could be found in that same little corner, hunkered behind a mound of papers and textbooks, struggling through derivatives and integers and stoichiometry and whatever else I put off till the last minute.
Four minutes now.
Why do I always do this to myself? I wondered angrily.
It wasn’t like I was stupid. I was actually pretty stinking good at school, and math was one of my better subjects. It was just, well, it was Dylan. Him and Jojo and Riley and basically everyone I knew. Between them and work, there just never seemed to be enough time for homework after school. Which left me with a grand total of one and a quarter hours in which to complete four AP classes worth of homework – a rather impossible feat for anyone, much less an easily distracted 17 year old who started suffering from the dreaded senior-itis since sophomore year.
Two minutes left.
It was only the second month of school, but already I was pretty sick of this setup. It was senior year, and my procrastination had come back to bite me in the butt in the form of a 7th period Fine Art which, unfortunately, landed me with two (two!) open periods right smack dab in the middle of the day. The break was just long enough to drive me crazy and just short enough to be completely useless. I still remembered Dylan’s face when I told him that I was going to be stuck here everyday till three. It was pretty priceless. What do you mean? he had asked. Can’t you talk to your counselor? Oh, I had talked to him alright. I had charged into his office on the day of registration, armed with a thwarted teenager’s fury, but it had done no good. Everyone, and I mean everyone, had signed up for AP Art History, but there was only one teacher and he taught two other subjects and – basically, I had two options, take the 7th and deal with it or take Music Appreciation with Mr. Sanders the crazy, and rather creepy, band teacher who was overly attached to his megaphone and had a nasty habit of playing Super Mario Bros with his students. It was the lesser of two evils, but the potential of a raised GPA, and general lack of a video game obsessed teacher, had caused Art History to win out.
Raised GPA, yeah right. With the way my homework was going so far this year, I’d be lucky to get what I got last year, much less anything better.
Thirty seconds left.
Fan-stinking-tastic, I thought as I stared at the remaining five problems on my worksheet, knowing they would take me at least five minutes apiece.
Whatever. No use worrying about it now. I quickly gathered up my ruffled papers, shoving them in my bag and listening to the general flurry of movement as the library’s other occupants did the same.
Maybe I can do them in class, I mused as I unceremoniously swept homework into my binder. Mr. Williams didn’t always collect homework first thing and he was pretty chill, so there was a good chance that I could get away with it.
Anyway, my mind was pretty preoccupied as I headed for the door so I didn’t notice I was tripping until it was too late and I landed with a rather impressive THUNK on the library floor, my binder exploding on impact to send English and Chemistry notes flying every which way in front of me.