Anything To Say

"Anything to say for yourself?" I ask.

The girl just stares at me.

Of all my students, she's the one I least expected to find in a situation like this, what with her perfect record in all her other classes, because honestly, I expected better. Some kids think it's cool to treat the rules as something to be broken, but never her.

Still the more I look at her, the less I'm surprised. She's always been the one wheezing like Darth Vader when she runs, catching dodgeballs with everything except her hands, and always on the opposite end of the soccer field from everyone else. There's lack of talent, and then there's just being lazy. If I weren't the one assigning teams, she'd probably be picked last.

One look at that chubby poker face behind those purple glasses is enough to piss me off. If she's going to cut class, the least she can do is pretend to be sorry. Didn't hear the bell? Yeah, right. As if I've never heard that one before.

Then, wouldn't you know it, she turns her back on me and walks away.

Okay, that does it – first chance I get, I'm calling that girl's mother.


"Anything to say for yourself?" he asks.

Oh God, I never realized how big Coach is. I'm a big girl myself, but he's looming over me like a polar bear in a track suit – which you wouldn't think is an intimidating picture, but it totally is. How can I not be nervous in front of someone whose career practically amounts to legalized torture?

I didn't even mean to miss the class. I was in the library, way down in the beanbag chair behind the back shelves, and I didn't hear the bell. He doesn't even believe me – okay, it is a ridiculous excuse. But why doesn't he believe me? It's such a tiny school, he knows me. He knows I wouldn't lie.

What happens when you skip a class, or appear to have skipped one? Will I get detention? Is he going to tell Mom? Will I fail Gym? And, holy crap, how long have I been standing here staring at him without answering his question?

No, sir. No, I don't have anything to say for myself. Because if I don't get out of here right this second, I'm going to cry.