It's foggy outside, which probably isn't such a good omen. The first day of school was supposed to be exciting, adventurous… All of that stuff adults promise to be the four best years of your life. I highly doubt it, but we'll see. Matt swears it isn't all that bad, but he went in differently than I did. I was going to be a ninth grader, my fourteenth birthday just a couple months after the start of the year. I would probably be the nerd again. There was no escaping the fact that I'm smart. There was a reason I started school in second grade, rather than first.

"You about ready?" Matt is at the door, but I hardly notice. It's like my senses are turned off. "Cal?"

I look over to him and shrug. "As ready as I'll ever be."

He sighs before shrugging. He does this a lot. He wants to be personal and helpful, but he just lost the ability to do so. He is empty like that. We're both pretty empty like that. For him, it's mainly with me. I can't really feel things anymore, with the exception of physical pain. Thankfully that was only a rare basis.

I get up, all my things ready to go, but not feeling ready myself. "Let's just go," I say as I pull my backpack up over my shoulder. I squeeze past him and head to the kitchen to grab my lunch to stuff it in my backpack. Matt follows me, a puzzled and saddened look on his face. I knew he cared and wanted to help, but he just couldn't.

The drive is slow because of the fog and Matt doesn't turn on the music. I just stare out of the window, watching as the fogged images of the town go by. When we're actually at school, I am out and gone before my brother turns his truck off. I head for the courtyard where I promised Danielle I'd meet her. Naturally, she is already there, bright and perky as always.

Today, she has on a bright yellow top that brings out the yellow accents in her floral skirt. For the pink accents in the skirt, she has on pink flats and a pink flower is pinned in her thick brown hair. She looked almost normal, minus the huge pair of glasses that she sported. She claimed they made her look smarter, like she needed the extra help. Danielle has that smartness to her. People look at her and know she is a brainiac.

I could easily pass as mediocre, even though I am still one of the smartest in my grade, even with the grade advance. The only difference is I try to blend in, go unnoticed. I stick with neutral colors and jeans for my first day, my hair up in a ponytail. The only thing I do is add a white, lacey ribbon, since it matches my shirt so well.

"Cal! How are you!" She is brighter and perkier today as she gives me a hug. My insides squirm with discomfort, but I return one back. I was lucky enough to have her as a friend. I didn't send her off by doing my usual things. Danielle is a great girl like that, with so much tolerance and all. She's a bit much for me at times, but she isn't so bad. She's a good enough friend, as far as friends go on my spectrum.

I give Danielle a shrug before sighing. "Want to go to class?"

She smiles widely and nods. "This is going to be the best year ever!"

I nod, but I'm not fully convinced. It feels like it will be anything but the best…