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Summer Break

The schoolyard was nearly empty apart from the children who had to wait around for their parents’ late arrival.
Another school year had passed, and Eva flipped through her yearbook to see who had signed it. It wasn’t like last year, when nearly everyone in her class wrote her well wishes and gave her their number, telling her to make sure she called them over summer.
She fast became aware that they never actually meant it. They merely wrote it because they had nothing else to say, but the whole prospect of meeting and socializing had never actually crossed their minds.

Eva felt the heat beat down upon her. The last school day of the year was always the same; class parties, yearbook signings, and when the last bell rung, everyone gathered their stuff and cheered to greet the arrival of three months of revelry, the beach, and the absence of responsibility.
Eva craved an invite. It was all she could even think of, long for, or ask god for at the moment. But she knew there was something wrong with her for people to be so indifferent as to whether or not she would join them.

In an instant of indomitable resolve, right then and there she swore to herself that next year… next year would be different.
She would get an invite.

People would care about her existence, and when she would walk in a room everyone would turn and stare. She would be beautiful.
Her personality would permeate the rooms and fill it with an undefeatable presence. Gone were the days of being too shy to speak out, saying the wrong thing or having nothing to say at all, and eating by herself in the cafeteria, listening to scattered conversations that she longed to be a part of.
Determination devoured her. This was what the summer was for. She didn’t have to have friends to go to the beach with and shop with because she was going to be working on herself, and that needed her full attention.

She flipped through the pages of her yearbook to see how she was going to style her hair, what she was going to wear, and how she was going to go about being the enviable one.
She reached the end of the book, and in a corner of a white page that was disappointingly vacant of signatures, her class president penned the words “don’t change.”
It was simply another lie from someone who had nothing better to say.
She closed the book and lifted her head up.

All she wanted to do was change.

words: Seema Duggal


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