Graduation is one of the most monumental moments in a teenagers life, no matter what clique or social status the teenager happens to belong to. It's a day of freedom, for that person is ready to enter the real world, for pride, and for slight depression, for the safety blanket of being a child was gone, the popularity that had been gained throughout the years would vanish, forcing one to start all over, and familiar faces would vanish.
For Deanne Weatin, graduation was more then that. It was the last day in the life she so formally knew and hated. However, as she stood firmly, gazing the crowd of the midnight graduation party full of happy diplomatic faces, she had no knowledge of what the day could bring, only that it was her last day in America before going off to a college in France, an honor presented to her for being the top French student in her graduating class.
Deanne was top of her class in almost all school subjects. The thing that made her laugh with utmost anger in herself, was that she would give it all away for one day of being someone else.
She was tall for her age, she always had been, and sickenly skinny. She came across lanky, and the fact that she was as white as baby powder made her look even more diseased. Her dull brown hair was always frizzy and knotty, no matter how long she spent before her bedroom mirror brushing it out. She had braces, pimples, and the cheapest pair of glasses her parents could find in the optical office. To add insult to injury, she never picked up any fashion sense from anyone, and her clothes ended up being the very colors and patterns one would put on their three year old daughter.
Because of all these character flaws, Deanne had never had any friends, let alone a boyfriend, or even a boy who liked her. She never had anyone hit on her, or say sorry when they bumped her in the halls. Besides laughing at her, she couldn't remember a time when anyone paid her any recognition.
Deanne scanned the crowd again. There was, of course, one thing that made high school bearable. That thing, or person rather, was Brad Minfler. He was the quarter back, the hero of the school, and the boy who had held possession of Deanne's heart since she was in the seventh grade.
Her heart pounded in her chest. Tonight had to be the night she confessed her feelings to him. If he didn't feel the same, it wouldn't mater, she told herself. She was going to be in France the very next day, but if he did, then high school would have been worth something.
There he was. In his football letterman's jacket, Brad finally appeared within a few feet from Deanne. She took in a deep breath and slowly walked up to him. She said his name quietly, and when he didn't hear it, she worked up the strength to tap his shoulder.
"Will, I mean…do you want to dance?" she asked in a hushed voice when she finally gained his attention. He laughed, but a sweet laugh, and Deanne's heart thumped franticly.
"Sure. I gotta go tell someone something though, wait here, I'll be right back." He said as he walked away. Deanne's heart nearly stopped. She tried to stop the ear to ear smile that had found it's way on her face, so she wouldn't seem to excited and therefore uncool, but there was no helping it.
Songs began to pass, couples had broken up, and gotten back together, and three streakers had been escorted off the premises. Brad, however, had not returned to the waiting girl. It didn't matter to Deanne though, he hadn't lied, he couldn't have, he had promised her a dance, and he would return and give it to her. Deanne was confident of this.
"Last song of the night, and it's a slow one, so hurry up and get your partner." The DJ's voice announced through the microphone. Deanne played with the frilly flowers on her white dress. Brad hadn't returned. Deanne had saved up for months to get the dress she wore now, being positive that the short white dress would get his attention, but it had failed. He stood her up all the same.
"Deanne!" she heard from the roof of the school. Deanne looked up, but before she could see who called her a mixture of egg yolks and red paint fell over her eyes and layered over her body.
Deanne wiped the mess from her face and looked around her. Her eyes were met with the laughing faces of all her peers. She gazed up at the roof with tear stained eyes to find Brad and two other boys cheering and holding up there victorious hands to the laughing crowd.
Deanne took one more glare into Brad's dark blue eyes, shook her head, and took off running. She was going to make him regret it. She was going to make him wish he had danced not just one, but every song with her. She'd make him wish he never made her cry.
Deanne awoke from the horrid nightmare with her heart beating. She asked herself, once more, why she was returning to the hell hole that was her high school for the ten year reunion. Why should she see the very people who made her life hell, for no reason at all, as a teenager? Why not put it to rest and move on?
Because Sebastian and Aurelie won't let you. Deanne said to herself with a pleasant smile. Things were different. Deanne had been discovered. She wasn't the lanky bland teenager anymore. She had gotten a beautiful tan, her long legs were found as envious and gorgeous, through straightening her hair, Deanne found it was rather soft and sleek. The braces were off, the pimples were nonexistent, the glasses had been replaced with contacts, and Deanne had gained boobs and fashion sense. Deanne had been turned into a model.
Not just a model, however. In a matter of weeks, Deanne had went from frumpy eighteen year old to one of France's top models. She was international. She'd been in European films. Nobody from her old high school could have accomplished anything better then that. She'd impress everyone to hell, as Sebastian told her, and in Aurelie's words, Brad would shit himself.
"You'll be fine, Mademoiselle." Aurelie assured with a smile upon seeing Deanne's worrisome face. Aurelie had been Deanne's first friend in France. She was the one who discovered her, and insisted she see her agent.
Aurelie never had to worry about awkward teenage years like Deanne. She had a natural, classy red head of hair and dark green eyes. Her parents bought her whatever magazines or clothes the girl could ask for, therefore she never had to worry about fashion sense. It was apparent even from her young years that Aurelie was destined to be a model, even before she left her small town in Kansas to go to France.
"I really hope you're right. Where do you suppose Sebastian is?" Deanne asked. Sebastian was the second person Deanne had met in France. Though she had many friends of famous status, Sebastian and Aurelie would always be her closest, because they were the ones that were there before she herself was famous.
"Where he is every time we take the jet, in the back sleeping." Aurelie said as she rolled her eyes. One would think the two hated each other if they didn't know any better. Sebastian's English, though improving greatly, was nothing impressive, and Aurelie often had English conversations with Deanne with words she knew he would never know, just to tease him. Aurelie, though beautiful and seemingly graceful, was wild and nothing like the opinion one would get from her angelic persona, and Sebastian often mocked her for this.
"Has it really been ten years since graduation? I feel old." Deanne asked after a moments worth of silence. She gazed out the window, those hellish times she had used to motivate her new life seemed like they had happened no more then a year before. They were so vivid in her memory.
"You bet, Grandma." Aurelie said with a smile, even though the question seemed less directed to any particular person.
"Why am I going back? It's been ten years, it's time to just let the memories rest." Deanne asked, still gazing out the window, "We could go to New York again instead, Sebastian liked it there a lot anyways."
"When have I ever given a damn about what Sebastian likes? It will be a happy day in hell before I let you miss this chance to go look at some green lady for the millionth time." Aurelie informed her as she crossed her arms to signal that she meant what she said.
"Then we'll go somewhere we haven't gone. Maybe the country. I don't see the point in going into a room full of the people who made my life miserable." Deanne said, finally looking back to her friend.
"Because you're different now. You are a hot mama. I've seen high school pictures of you, you're a whole new woman, it's insane how much you've changed for the better." Aurelie pointed out.
"I already know that, that's all that matters." Deanne said quietly, hoping Aurelie wouldn't catch what she said as an excuse for her nerves.
"The hell it is! It's not like they're going to recognize you in any of your pictures, and European models aren't typically American household names, how the hell are they going to know that you're better then them if you don't tell them?" Aurelie asked, outraged.
"I can't argue with that." Deanne said through giggles. Aurelie's crude language that never matched with her angelic looks never ceased to amuse Deanne, no matter what kind of mood she was in.
"No, you really can't." Aurelie said with a smile before she returned to the comforting mother like part of her, "Stop worrying, you're insanely sexy and you have outfits that cost more then most of their houses. The only thing you have to worry about is them becoming too impressed ending up being yet some more of your stalking obsessive friends."
"I hope." Deanne said, her gaze returning back out the window.
"I know." Aurelie replied.
The plane softly landed on the ground. They were in America. As Deanne checked into the hotel that she and her friends would be staying at, she silently said to herself, "class of 1996, here I come."