Beep! Beep! Beep! As always, the alarm clock went off at 6:00 to tell me that it was time to get ready for school. My name is Jane Marks, and I am sixteen. I hated school, and always had. I wasn't incredibly smart, or athletic, or social. In fact, I had only one friend. His name was Luke, and he had the exact same problems. As you can probably already tell, we were the rejects. And as you should know, high school isn't exactly kind to rejects. In fact it's easiest when we can just get everyone to forget we're there. However, that isn't easy when you attract the attention of every clique in the school, and not in a good way. Luckily, most of them gave up on ruining my life a couple of years ago, but there's still one that loves to torture me. It all goes back to third grade.

Miranda Jacobs was always stuck up, even as a little kid. I think it was because her parents spoiled her, or it may be because she just hated people who weren't as pretty as her. Whatever the reason was, she always saw me as a looming target on which to focus all of her anger. Anyway, we were in third grade, and as usual I was sitting at my desk, trying to blend in as well as I could. Miranda was already angry because the teacher had made her stop talking, which Miranda didn't like doing. It was time for arts-and-crafts, and that day we were finger painting. Being the un-original person that I was, I decided to paint a tree. Of course, Miranda was painting a princess. After about ten minutes, Miranda started complaining because she was out of pink paint. The teacher immediately looked at me, since I didn't need pink to make a tree. However, there was no way Miranda would walk all the way over to my desk for the paint, so I got up to bring it to her. I admit, it was kind of my fault for not tying my shoes, and as you can imagine, I tripped. The paint flew out of my hands and all over Miranda. So my relationship with her was all downhill from there.

Back in reality, I slapped the snooze button on my alarm clock and went back to sleep. I had barely closed my eyes before I realized that the clock had read 7:30. I had overslept! My alarm must have been set for the wrong time. School started in thirty minutes. I jumped out of bed, threw some clothes on, and gathered my books. My mom and dad were already at work, and the bus had already left. It was a ten minute drive to school in a car, but I didn't have my license yet. I would have to run. I bolted out the door in a panic and was ready to sprint down the street, when I saw a silver car parked in my driveway. Leaning on it was Luke.

"Luke!" I shouted, relieved. "How did you know I was late?"

"I didn't," he replied, "but I though you would want to see my new car."

In all of the panic, I hadn't even realized that Luke didn't have a car, until now. He had had his license for about a month, but had been saving his work money for this car. Noticing how rushed I looked, he smiled smugly, his brown hair blowing in the breeze. "So I'm guessing you need a ride?"

I gave him a glare, and he opened the passenger door, gesturing for me to get in, and I did.

"So what happened to you this morning?" he asked.

"I overslept. My alarm didn't go off at the right time," I replied.

"Well it's good you came out quickly, because I was about to give up and leave," he said with a laugh.

We were now about halfway to the school, and since we lived in the country, hills of clean, unfarmed land rolled by outside the windows. I loved watching the grass move in the wind, and I often wondered what it must be like to be as free as the wild deer grazing on the crests. Luke could tell that I was preoccupied, and it was quiet the rest of the drive.

With Luke's naturally fast driving, we got to school twenty minutes early. There were still a lot of cars parked in the lot, but it wasn't hard for Luke to find a space close to the building. Since we had a while until the first bell, once we got out of the car we headed straight for the commons. As usual we picked out an empty table away from the crowd and sat down.

"So what do you think of the car?" Luke asked, obviously still excited about his new ride.

"Well, without it I would have been late to class, so I guess it's pretty cool," I said with a smile. That response was good enough for him, so he didn't press the matter.

Looking around, most people here at this time were frantically trying to finish their homework before the bell, but since neither Luke nor I liked to procrastinate, we had already finished ours the night before. That left us with now fifteen minutes of free time.

"So how are things going with the Miranda Clique?" Luke asked.

"The same as always," I replied with a sigh. "At least I didn't have to see her on the weekend. Plus, she would never care enough to come in and finish homework."

"True," he said. "So how long do you think you have before running into her again?"

"Considering I don't have any classes with her, I should be safe until the end of the day."

At that, we both got up and headed to our lockers. Luke had already had most of his books with him, so he came over to my locker and waited for me. Today was one of the days when we had every class together, so once I had my books, we set off for our first class: English. Our teacher was a man named Mr. Carson. He was a little unusual and didn't really care about teaching us proper uses for verbs, or adjectives, etc. Instead, he mainly focused on Shakespeare and other classic poets. The class wasn't that bad unless he suddenly decided to call someone to the front to recite, which he did often. I have a huge fear of public speaking, so whenever I am called, I always have trouble stammering through the iambic pentameter, and everyone but Luke seems to think my recitations are hilarious. Therefore, I dread English now.

When we walked into the room, it was empty. This was natural, since most people didn't even begin to head to class until the first bell, and Mr. Carson loved talking to the other teachers in the lounge while getting coffee. We sat down in our spots which were, thankfully, in the back. A few seconds later the bell rang, and people began filing into the room. Soon after, Mr. Carson walked in with his coffee, and shortly after his entrance the second bell rang, signaling the start of school.

"Good morning class," said Mr. Carson as usual.

"Good morning Mr. Carson," murmured the class in unison.

Then the day began. Class proceeded as usual. There was some poetry, some unfortunate people reciting, nothing new. In an hour and a half the bell rang, and we walked routinely to our next class. I won't bore you with the details of the day, since nothing unusual happened. The day went by just like any other, and just like any other day I dreaded the end. This wasn't because I enjoyed school, but rather because I knew it would end with a visit from Miranda and her gang of followers.

The final bell rang, and as soon as I had packed my books, I headed to the commons with Luke. He never could get used to the fact that Miranda would bug me every day after school, but I assured him that there was nothing he could do to stop it. She would always be there every day, and not to mention the principal was friends with her father. Even if there was anyone we could tell, she would just cry her way out and blubber some fake apologies anyway. After that my life would be even worse. So now Luke said nothing, just went to his car and waited with a disapproving look.

After he was gone, I moved near the wall, trying to slink through the commons without being noticed by the 'Miranda Clique' as everyone called them. However, as expected, I wasn't so lucky.