3 CHAPTER 2

Smiles and Pain. Peace and Chaos.

I wonder how a person can smile despite the pain he or she is feeling. I wonder how can there be peace at the center of chaos.

How can they do that? Why can’t I do that?

“Faster, Fely. We’ll be late!”

I snapped out from my thoughts when I heard Ghale’s voice.

I run towards her and smiled.

“Let’s go. I’m excited.” I said, but she just sadly smiles at me.

“I hope you still remember Mom’s words? Don’t mess up okay? This is your only chance.” she sadly told me.

My smile vanished and replied, “Of course I do, sis. I won’t forget that. And I won’t waste this opportunity. Don’t worry.” I walked towards the entrance leaving, Ghale behind.

Of course. How could I not remember what they told me?

“Never have friends, Felicity. If you follow me, you’ll be free from the chains.”

I wonder, until when should I follow her?

“Friends, huh,” I murmured.

“Here is your room, Fely. I gotta go now. Bye!” she, then, run back to reach the building just beside ours. I looked at the room filled with students, chatting.

So, this is how it feels like when you go to school? Wow.

I stepped inside and look for an available chair.

“Uh, is this seat available?” I asked the guy at the side since this is the only seat I’ve seen not taken. But still, I need to ask.

“Yeah, sure. Take it.” He said without looking at me.

I carefully take the seat and put my bag on the chair. I looked around and realized that they were all close. They feel so comfortable towards each other.

Damn, I feel so lost now. Felicity, what's new?

“Uh do you mind?” said the guy next to me. He was referring to the bracelet he couldn’t put on his wrist.

“Yeah sure,” I said and helped him.

“Thanks—“he stopped midway what he was saying when he looked at my face.

“Fely?” he asked.

“How’d—shit.” I halted when I realized who the guy was.

“Wow, is this a coincidence or this is destiny?” he smirked, earning a glare from me.

“Hmm, what was your name again?” I asked.

“What? You don’t remember me?” Of course, I do. I just wanted to step on his ego. Too much confidence eh. “Drake.” He looked at me with stares like it's waiting for a miracle to happen.

“What?” I said and breath heavily to stop my myself from laughing. “I said my name is Drake. Does it ring a bell now?”

“Hmm, no. I’m sorry? Where did we meet?” I looked up to convince him that I’m thinking about why I couldn’t remember him.

He looked at me flatly feeling so insulted making me burst into laughter.

“My God! Your reaction is priceless. You should’ve seen your face.” I laughed again while holding my stomach. I realized I laughed too much when I felt the stares coming from our classmates.

“Uh, sorry.” I apologized and immediately sat in my chair beside Drake. I looked at him and realized that he was grinning. “What?” I whispered to him. He leaned into me and whispered back. “You look so happy and your laugh seems so genuine. Keep your smiles and laughs. It suits you.” I was dumbstruck when he told me what I just told him last night.

He laughed at me while I was just there, sitting, not able to make a move after what he just told me. “You left me dumbfounded too. Now, it's a tie.” he was still grinning and I should say thank you when our professor went inside the room making us sit straight and stop from talking.

“Good morning everyone. Before we should start I would like to introduce myself. I will be your teacher for your Entrepreneurship subject and I will be handling you, as well, for this semester. My name is Kevin Navares. Nice to meet you all.” He talked so fast but at least we could still keep up. Hardly.

I looked at Drake and realized that he was just using his air pods like he has his own world. Not minding everyone, even our professor. I looked around and realized that almost all of them are doing the same thing.

“Hey.” Drake look at me when he heard my voice. “Yeah?” he asked.

“Is it fine to listen to some music while our teacher is saying something in front?” he laughed at my remark. “What?” I hissed. “Nah, they wouldn’t care unless you’re making noise.” He said and looked at his phone again while still listening to whatever music he listens to.

“But—“before I could continue what I was supposed to say, our teacher called my name out. “Ms. Genson, you’re talking too loud!” he shouted making my classmates’ heads turn to me.

And he knew me already!

‘What? I didn’t even raise my voice and just whispered to Drake and then I’m talking too loud? Great!’

“I’m sorry, Sir,” I said shyly. I looked down when I heard them laughing. This is so embarrassing. Why does he need to shout? I bet he didn’t hear my voice yet he just saw me talking. “Sit down. Don’t ever let me hear your voice again. Understood?” he said it strictly like it was not my first offense in his class.

“I told you.” I heard Drake whispered over my ears. I was so embarrassed the whole time that’s why I ducked my head on the table. So much for my first day.

“I hate you,” I whispered back making him chuckle. I looked up and turned my head around watching everyone attentively listening to our teacher but with their headphones on.

We were having an oral for what he discussed earlier and when he was about to call me, the bell rang. Thank God.

He is so strict, an oral for the first day of school. too early for a discussion.

“Class dismissed.” He said and we stood up to get out of the room. I texted Ghale to come over so that we can eat lunch after her class.

‘We’re done for the first subject. You're done?’ after sending the message, I put all my things back in my bag and waited awhile for Ghale’s reply. And when she did, I immediately went outside.

“Hey! How was it?” she asked. I was about to answer her when I noticed that she’s with her friends. “Uh, it’s fine.” I smiled awkwardly. “Oh, by the way, this is my sister, Felicity. Sis, these are my friends, Jane, Nicole, and Sharon.” She smiled and turned her head towards me again.

“Let’s go, I’m hungry.” Said the girl which Ghale told me named Sharon. I’m kind of uncomfortable with them but never mind. If they’re friends with my sister, I should befriend them too. I thought positively.

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But no friends for me. I sighed.

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