She woke up in a cold sweat for the third time this week. What was going on? Why did this keep happening to her? She couldn't understand it, but as usual, she turned on the light and pulled a small notebook out of the drawer of her dresser. She turned to a clean page and wrote down exactly what had happened in her dream.

I was walking alone down an empty street. Jackie was calling my name, but I couldn't find her anywhere. I called back to her, and she continued to scream. She was crying. She was crying in agony. Finally, I found her behind a dumpster in fetal position. I picked up her small, fragile body and rocked her in my arms. She sobbed into my shoulder and told me I had to find Daddy.

That was all she could remember. For the past two nights she'd had the same dream. Each night she saw a little further into what happened. Tonight Jackie had finally spoken to her.

She rubbed her eyes and sighed. Looking over at her clock she saw 4:17 am. Great. She had to be up for school in less than two hours. But she had to check on her sister, or she'd never get back to sleep. She tiptoed down the hall to her little sister's room and poked her head inside. Jackie was sprawled across the bed snoring loudly. Leslie stepped in quietly and pulled the covers back over her sister. She took one last look at her, satisfied that she was fine, and walked back to her own room. Tomorrow was the first day of high school for her, and she prayed she'd be awake for it in the morning.

And she was awake indeed. She hadn't been able to fall asleep again at all that night. At six, she went downstairs and prepared breakfast for Jackie and her Dad. Later, she ate with them and got ready for school. Her best friend Martina came by and they walked to the high school together.

"Oh my god. I can't believe we're really high schoolers now," Martina exclaimed. "Soon we're gonna be able to drive and vote and buy cigarettes and alcohol!" she squealed. Sensing that Leslie wasn't as consumed with the conversation as she was, Martina tapped her friend on the shoulder. "Hello. Earth to Leslie."

"Sorry," Leslie replied. "I'm really tired. I had trouble sleeping last night."

"Me too," Martina said. "I didn't know what to wear. Does this skirt look ok?" she asked, taking a step back so Leslie could look her over.

It looked like she was trying way to hard to look older. She was even wearing make-up. Martina NEVER wore make-up. Leslie knew that she didn't want to hear that, so she just nodded at her friend.

The truth was that Martina was always trying to exceed Leslie's natural beauty. Now Martina wasn't ugly, but she hadn't quite "bloomed" yet. She still had some baby fat, and wasn't as tall as most other girls. Leslie on the other hand was already five foot six, and almost super-model thin. But her hair is what made her stand out more than anything else. Long, golden waves of shiny hair hung down to her waist. This made Martina fade into the background with her own almost-black brown hair that hung only to her shoulders and was obviously artificially straightened.

"I'm so nervous," Martina added with a skip and a smile. "We're gonna meet so many cute guys!" she said smiling as they arrived at the gate. "Here we go!"

They walked onto the school ground and saw the sophomores, juniors and seniors around campus. Most were talking about the summer, some were smoking cigarettes, some were playing hacky sack. The Freshmen were instructed to go inside for orientation, so Leslie and Martina followed.

The auditorium was bustling with 14 year olds and Leslie and Martina quickly found their other two best friends Kerri and Felicia. They clumped together and sat down for orientation, and waited for it to begin. The principal talked briefly and then divided the class into groups for the tour. Luckily, Martina and Leslie were put into the same group because of alphabetical order. The only problem was that their student tour guide wasn't there. The group of 8 waited for a few minutes before a senior came running in.

He was tall and attractive. He had black spiked hair and wore a faded Pear Jam t-shirt with jeans and black boots. He approached the group and Martina immediately nudged Leslie. She pulled her close and whispered into her ear. "See? I told you we were going to meet cute guys!"

Leslie eyed the boy and turned to Martina. "I think he's a senior, Martina. That's way too old for you. Maybe you should check out the Freshmen in our group," she answered.

"SHHH!" Martina hushed her when the guy came closer.

"I'm Ethan," he told the group. "I'm a senior here," he said pulling off his dark sunglasses to reveal green eyes. "I want you all to introduce yourselves, ok?" He immediately pointed at Martina.

"Uh, I'm Martina," she stammered. Leslie rolled her eyes hoping Martina hadn't seen her. The poor girl had a serious problem with guys.

Ethan repeated her name and pointed to Leslie next, continuing with each student repeating their names. "Ok, let's get started on the tour," he said after getting through all 8 students.

The tour went as planned, but Leslie couldn't help but wonder how Martina was going to find anything in this school when she was staring at Ethan the entire time, clearly daydreaming. It was a short tour, though, and soon it was time to go to classes.

Leslie and Martina didn't have any morning classes, but they did have lunch together. They met outside in the quad and sat on the grass. Martina chattered nonstop about how much she liked Ethan and Leslie just listened while she ate her yogurt.

Suddenly, Martina stopped talking and just stared across the quad. Great. She had seen Ethan. He was eating lunch by himself at one of the picnic tables.

"Come on. We have to go say hi," Martina said, getting up and brushing herself off.

"Why?" Leslie asked not moving from her spot. "We don't even know him."

Martina just stared at her and finally made up her mind. "Fine. I'll go by myself," she stated. It would probably be better this way, she thought to herself. The guys always chose Leslie over Martina anyway.

Martina marched across the quad toward Ethan and Leslie watched from afar.