Finally! School is
starting again! I can’t wait to see all of my friends after two whole months! I
spent the whole summer in California with my Aunt Simone. She’s only, like,
five years older than me so we’re practically sisters. After staying in Cali
for so long it’s gonna be hard to come back to Texas, one of the only states
that have shorts-and-flip flop weather in the middle of winter, haha.
definitely gonna be glad to see my BFF Megan again. She went to Paris this
summer to hang with her second cousin or something. She promised that I could
come with her to either London or France next summer, if I keep my grades up,
lol. That’s so Megan. She can get pretty silly at times, I would know.
Speaking of which, Megan said that
Hannah Baker, one of the richest girls in school, is going to have a
back-to-school party for whoever makes the volleyball team this year. She’s
supposedly having it the Thursday after next, two days before volleyball
results usually come in. No doubt I’m going to make the team again. Last school
year Coach Martin said she’s reserving a spot for me on the team, so I might
not even have to try out again. My friends are always telling me how I’m one of
the best athletes at school, even better than Hannah! I gotta go now. I need to
do my devotion before mom tells me to get ready to leave for school. Oh, I’m so
I closed my book gently
and slid my diary pen into its holder. Sighing, I set it onto my neat
nightstand and picked up my bible. “Okay, where am I today.” I muttered as I
flipped through the thin delicate pages. Finally, I stopped at 2 Samuel chapters
16 verses 5.
“And when king David
came to Bahurim,” I read out loud, “behold, there came out a man of the family
of the house of Saul, whose name was Shemei, the son of Ge`ra: he came forth,
and cursed still as he came.”
Fifteen minutes later I
shut my bible and placed it on the nightstand next to my diary. After making
sure it wouldn’t slide off like last time, I jumped up and began making my bed.
Someone pounded on the door just as I pulled my lilac flower comforter over my
full size bed.
Moms muffled voice came
through the door. “Dakota hurry and come downstairs. Mike said he needs to drop
you off early so that he can get to his office sooner.”
“Okay mom!” I yelled
back as I tossed my purple throw pillows onto the bed. Mike is my older brother, and I mean way older brother. The two of us are ten
years apart. He worked as a lawyer down town.
I quickly pulled on my
khaki capris, the new ones that I got in California. They had a bazillion
pockets everywhere and a small string bow at the end of both sides. I slipped
on a lime green camisole that accentuated my athletic body shape and threw on a
white sweater that folded up at the elbows, a big contrast to my chocolaty
“Dakota!” Mike yelled
from the bottom of the stairs. “Let’s go! I gotta be at the office by ten!”
I glanced at my digital
clock. It was 8:37. “Coming Mike!” I answered back as I struggled to pull on my
white flats while tugging my gray sequin beret over my shoulder length locks.
Grabbing my house key, I looped it around my neck and tucked it inside my
shirt. Then, I stuck my cell phone, wallet, and lip gloss-three things I never
leave the house without-into a small white hand bag and flung my pink and blue
backpack over one shoulder. Before anyone else could call my name I swung open
the door and headed downstairs.
“Mom, do we have
anymore yogurt?” I called running into the kitchen. I flung open our large
refrigerator door and searched through the dairy drawer, snagging a Capri sun
and bagel along the way.
“No your sister ate the
last one this morning before she left.” mom said as she walked into the kitchen
after me. “Here take a banana.” Grabbing the banana out of her hand, I zipped
past her and headed towards the doorway, taking a huge bite out of the bagel.
“Dakota,” mom said
before I took two steps out of the kitchen, “Are you forgetting something?” she
tapped her foot on the polished tile floor and place an elbow on the marble
counter. I ran over to her and gave her a quick hug. “Thanks for the banana; I
love you, and bye!” I said around the bagel.
She laughed and
straightened my hat. “Goodbye. Do you have your card for lunch?”
I rolled my eyed. “Yes
mom, it’s in my wallet. Can I go now?” She nodded and pushed me forward. “Hurry
up or you’ll be late for your first day.” I grinned at her and ran to the front
entrance. Opening the door, I stepped outside into the hot sun, and closed and
locked the door with my house key. Mikes
sleek black mustang shone in the morning sun. I could see my brother’s dark
figure inside the car with his head leaning against the steering wheel.
I walked quickly to the
car and opened the front door. Mikes head popped up and he squinted at me, the
sun’s reflection shining directly into his eyes.
“Come on.” he said,
starting the car. It purred like a cat as I ducked my head and slid into the
front seat closing the door behind me. He eased out of the driveway and drove
down the long stretch of road.
I looked out at all of the mansion-like houses
that we passed, all of them looking the same as the one before. I sighed and
leaned back. It was weird to know that your house looked like all of those too.
Like one of the many clones that dominated the Honey Clove gated community.
“So what took you so
long?” He asked as he pulled onto the main road. “It took you, like, thirty
minutes to get downstairs.”
I pulled out my lip
gloss and began applying it to my lips while I answered. “Girls need 1-2 hours
max of preparation before they leave the house for anything. You barely gave me
five minutes.” I rubbed my lips together to smooth out the gloss before I took
a sip of my Capri sun. Mike stopped at a stop sign, then pulled out of the
neighborhood onto the busy road.
Mike cringed up his
nose and smirked. “You obviously didn’t prep yourself enough.” he said as he
stopped at a red light.
“What do you mean?” I
asked, looking at him with a lifted eyebrow.
“You didn’t brush your
I clamped my hand over
my mouth as my eyes got big. “Oh, shoot. I totally forgot!” I mumbled through
my fingers. Mike just laughed and started driving again as the light turned
“Here,” he said, digging through the glove
department while steering with one hand, “I have some of that spray toothpaste
stuff that dad gave me. You can have it.” I quickly took the spray and spritzed
some into my mouth.
“Thanks Mike. If you
hadn’t caught that I don’t know what I would do.” I said as I tested my breath. It wasn’t fresh
but at least it didn’t smell like animal dung.
Mike turned onto the
highway. “I still don’t understand why a fourteen year old girl like you would
need so much ‘preparation’. I mean, what do you need to prepare for anyway?
I sighed dramatically
and leaned against the door. Men just don’t understand these things. “It’s so
that we can look presentable, Mike. You wouldn’t want me to walk around looking like a loony head all the time,
right?” Mike just shrugged. “Besides,” I continued, “I wasn’t just getting
ready for school. I was doing my devotion. And writing in my diary of course.
That took up most of the time.”
Mike looked over at me.
“You were doing your devotional? What did you do, look at that calendar I gave
you and read the scripture for this month again?” Mike was a youth pastor
part-time at a church down the street so he was always giving our family
gifts-calendars, books, coffee mugs, et cetera-that always had something
biblical in or on it. I didn’t mind at all, since I was a Christian. My whole
family is. We always appreciate what he gives us.
I shoved him playfully
and grinned. “No, I don’t do that anymore. I read from an actual bible now.”
He smiled. “That’s
good. That’s really good. So, what did you read today?”
I peeled my banana
while I answered “Well, it was that story that you told me about when that guy Shimei was cursing King David, but the king
wasn’t offended or anything. He basically said that it was all happening for a
reason. That kinda helped me to realize that even if someone is rude or
annoying or mean to me, I shouldn’t be offended and I should just pray for
Mike nodded as he turned on to the highway.
“You’re right,” he said seriously, “Remember that bible verse that dad taught
us when you were younger?”
I shook my head. “Probably
not.” I bit into my banana.
“It was ‘love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who
hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your
Father in heaven.*”
“Oh, yeah, I remember
that. It was somewhere in Matthew, right?” He nodded his head again.
“Loving my enemies.” I
said as I rested my head against the window. “That may be kind of hard, huh?”
“Yeah,” Mike agreed
solemnly, “More than you know.”