The Queen of Dares

I had to go and say it. I just had to insist I was The Queen of Dares, never denying a challenge, fright was not in my vocabulary. Damn my eleven-year-old egotism. Now I'm in one heck of a sticky situation, And I don't pull this off, my reputation will be stained for the rest of middle school.

"What are you going to do Maora?" My best friend, Ashley, whispers to me as we stand outside my school's cafeteria, bracing ourselves before we enter.

I tighten my grip around thermos I'm holding. Then again, if I get through this dare unscathed, I'll be seen as queen from here on out....

It all started at school, the day before Halloween. The usual conversation starters popped up, with the usual answers: "What are you doing?" "I think I'm going trick or treating." "Are you going to a Haunted House or watching horror movies?" "Eeek, I don't like scary things!" Of course, I ended up interjecting. Not to boast or anything, but unlike a vast majority of the girls in my school, I wasn't afraid of anything. Bugs? I think they're cute. Mice? Same goes for them. Gory horror movies? The bloodier, the better. I was a complete dispassionate, a sixth grade Catherine Barkley with brown hair and no chest.

But where there's a brave girl, there's a stupid boy who has to butt in. You know, that one boy who has to ruin everything, who has to put his nose in everyone's business and say something that drags you down in your moment of glory? That boy is Jake Thompson, the class clown, constantly picking on me, and number #1 on my hate list. Kids in my class say that he teases me because he likes me. As if.

"So, you're not afraid of anything?" Jake said, coming over to me.

"You heard me."

"That can't be; You got to be afraid of something."

"And why's that?"

"Because you're a girl."

Ok, now that pissed me off. Now he was toast. "That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard. I'm not afraid of anything, or turn down any dare," I said, my voice still strong.

"Oh really?," He sneered.

"You heard me Thompson. I'm the Queen of Dares." At this point I sat back, very confident. There was nothing he could say to that. He wasn't that stupid; he didn't have the guts. Or so I thought.

"I dare you to eat a worm." It was definitely something Jake would say, a total boy dare. It came out so fast, I was taken aback. Jake saw my shock-He smirked again, the tables were turned. "If you're not afraid, that is....."

Oh, that's it. That was the last straw. I was so annoyed at him and mad I wasn't thinking, and the next thing I knew I blurted out "Fine. I'll do it." Everyone gasped. Shock, shock. Surprise, surprise.

Jake's eyes widened. "You're kidding."

"I said I'll do it."

"Fine, Monday during lunch. Bring a worm."

This sounded so anti-climactic. Still, I smirked, maintaining my cool-girl status. I had to look like I found a loop hole. "Any kind of worm?"

"Whatever you want, just bring it and eat it, oh wonderful 'Queen of Dares'."

Now, I just want to confirm that I was still what I claimed to be-It wasn't that bugs or worms or creepy-crawlies scared me, but touching something and eating something are two totally different things.

That night I sat at my desk, thinking, while Ashley sat on my bed, eating a 'cup of dirt'. It was this wicked awesome dessert my mother and I made around Halloween. It was basically chocolate pudding, gummi worms, and crumbled Oreos mixed together in a cup so it looked like you were eating a cup of a dirt. Big fan among kids like me and Ash.

"So what are you gonna do?," Ashley asked, licking chocolate pudding and crumbled Oreo from her spoon. "It's not like you can actually eat it a worm. It's so disgusting, even for you Maora. Plus, they're covered in germs."

"Yeah, I know...but I couldn't help it!" I put my head down on my desk. "That stupid Jake just mad me so mad......I had to say 'yes'." I sighed. "But still, there's has to be a loop-hole......" I looked back at Ash, who was finishing off her cup of dirt and pondering at the same time. Most of the pudding and practically all of the Oreo was gone now, leaving only 2 chocolate pudding covered gummi worms. They almost looked like they were real, covered in actual dirt.......

That's when it hit it me."Any kind of worm?" I remembered asking Jake.

"Oh my god, I got it!"

We make it over the table where Jack and the rest of my class is sitting. As soon as I sit down, Jake opens his big mouth. "So, do you have it?" I nod, opening the thermos and dumping the worm into the little cup-cover.

It seems to happen in slow motion. I pick it up. Tick Tick Tick Tick Tick. Plop it in my mouth .Tick Tick Tick Tick Tick. Chew, swallow, down my throat it goes.

I love the look on Jack's face- He's shocked, and almost looks like he's gonna throw up. Priceless. "Ugh, you're disgusting!," He screams before running away. As soon as he does, everyone cheers for me, mostly the boys.

"Oh Mor, I can't believe you did that!" Ashley covers her mouth. "What did it taste like?"

I lick my lips. "Not that bad."

"Ew, you gotta be kidding me."

I smile. "Ash....." I show her what's remaining in the thermos: Chocolate pudding, crumbled up Oreos, and a few gummi worms. I earned my title: Maora Maison, the Queen of Dares.