Summary: After the death of her mother, Louise Gold goes off the rails, establishes her reputation as a rebellious bad girl and indulges in the world of alcohol, drugs and partying. But as their friendship slips away, can her best friend, Jake, help her?
Louise Phoebe Gold sighed softly as she sat at the back of the science lab, listening to her boring teacher, Dr Faust, drone on about atom structure and the periodic table of elements. It was third period and the lesson was dragging on forever; Louise glanced quickly at the clock above the blackboard, which was full of complicated diagrams of the atoms of elements such as Lithium and Sodium. It was just after twelve pm, so there was roughly just under twenty five minutes until the bell sounded throughout the school and Louise was released from the torturous Chemistry lesson.
Across the room, Louise could see two of the 'popular' girls whispering to each other, completely disregarding the teacher's lecture. They were Heather Johnson and Roxanne Le Saux. They were the typical 'bad girls'. It was common knowledge that they had been smoking for three years, since the age of twelve; that they went to wild all night parties; did drugs and got drunk; and hung out with much older boys. It was a well know fact that Heather had lost her virginity to a seventeen-year-old boy that she'd known merely a few days, when she was only thirteen and Roxanne had followed Heather's lead, sleeping with her then boyfriend who was three years older.
Heather's curtain of soft blonde hair fell over her face as she giggled at something Roxanne had just said. Her blue eyes, rimmed heavily with dark black eyeliner, roamed around the classroom and settled on Louise. Louise looked down at the messily scribbled diagrams in her notebook, feeling uncomfortable. She knew that Heather and Roxanne were probably talking about her. That was all she needed.
In the recent months since her mother's death, Louise felt as though her life was spiralling out of control. Things had slowly been going down hill and now with going back to school for Year Eleven, her exam year when she would sit GCSEs, the stress was beginning to get to her. Her Dad was never home; he now practically lived at the office where he worked, coming home only for an hour at the most every couple of days, to change clothes before returning to his job in the city.
Louise chance a look at Heather and Roxanne and saw, to her relief, that they were no longer staring at her. They had, instead, returned to gossiping quite loudly, about the party which was to take place at the weekend. Consequently, Dr Faust extraordinarily stopped lecturing and paused, sending a glare in Heather and Roxanne's direction.
"Roxanne," he said in the sternest voice he could muster, "Do you have something you'd like to share with the class?"
"Yeah," Roxanne answered with a smirk, "My name is Roxie, not Roxanne."
This, of course, sent Heather into another round of giggles, much to Dr Faust's annoyance. Louise caught her friend, Jake's, eye and they shared a silent laugh at how juvenile and immature Heather and Roxanne were.
Jake Harris was Louise's best friend; they had met when they were nine years old at their fathers' annual summer work picnic. At first they hadn't been able to stand each other, but when Jake's family had moved in across the road from Louise's, they had gradually become friends and were now inseparable. When Louise's Mum had died, Jake and his family had been there for her. They had made her feel welcome in their home when her Dad became withdrawn and unintentionally began to push her away.
Many people automatically, and incorrectly, assumed that Jake and Louise were a couple. They weren't. They were just good friends. That was all.
Jake was sitting two seats along from Louise and those two seats happened to be empty. Louise scribbled a quick note on a page of her notebook, tore it out and passed it quickly to Jake.
Boring lesson, huh? What you doing after school? Wanna meet up?
PS, Do you think that Dr Faust is always mind-numbingly dull? Lol"
During this time, Dr Faust had begun to stride about the classroom to give his lecture. And, by an unfortunate coincidence, he was just walking behind the back row when Jake opened the scrunched up note to read it. Dr Faust took great enjoyment in making a big show of confiscating it.
"Well," he said in a loud, smug voice, "What do we have here?" He opened up the note and read out some of what it said in a flat voice. "Boring lesson, huh? Do you think that Dr Faust is always this mind-numbingly dull?"
A few kids snickered; Heather and Roxanne were in fits of laughter. Dr Faust, however, looked far from impressed.
"Ms Gold, do you think this is funny?" he asked calmly.
Louise slowly turned around in her seat to face Dr Faust. She felt her cheeks burning and turning bright red.
"Um, I-I," she stammered.
But Dr Faust interrupted, cutting her off, "Detention. After school. This afternoon." His voice echoed loudly because of the high ceiling of the classroom.
Louise turned back around and rolled her eyes. That was all she needed. An after school detention.
Dr Faust shuffled back to the front of the classroom and continued with his lecture. Then, annoying him further, the bell, which signified lunchtime, rang into the classroom and the students slammed shut their notebooks and gathered their things. Heather and Roxanne waltzed out of the room after throwing Louise a stray look, as if they were planning something. Jake came and stood next to Louise as she was trying to stuff her notebook into her bag.
"Bad luck, Lou," he said with a sympathetic smile.
"It's fine," Louise replied as she tossed her long dark brown hair over her shoulders and out of her face. She finally succeeded in fitting her book inside her bag. She and Jake walked slowly toward the door of the classroom where Dr Faust was waiting; they were the last students to leave.
Dr Faust handed Louise her detention slip with a smug look on his face as he said, "Room 16, 2:45pm. You are expected not to be late."
"Yes, sir," she grumbled. She and Jake walked out the door and made their way together through the crowded corridors. Then, at the same time as they stepped into the sun drenched courtyard, the heavens opened and rain began to pour down.
"Great," Louise moaned as Jake zipped up his jacket, "That's all I need!"
to be continued