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The Secrets We Keep: Chapter 3 Filth Beneath the Clean Surface

by Briyahna Rice, staff reporter

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For as long as she could remember, Lena didn’t have a problem with any of her teachers.  From Middle school, and even now, she couldn’t name a single teacher that she didn’t like.  Save for one. Even the Principal was generally friendly to her, despite the general opinion of the other students believing that she was a cold hearted harridan,who preyed on innocent kids for no logical reason. But perhaps that was part of the hierarchy, to keep her head down and conform to the ways of her fellow school mates in order to survive and  possibly ascend to popularity. But Lena was not her fellow students and neither was Lizabeth, but they knew that already. Neither Lena nor Lizabeth wanted the so called god complex that came with being popular in high school. The shinier the surface, the filthier the grime that hid underneath.

Lena was always a nonconformist throughout her academic life and was an outcast in her Middle School life. Looking back now, things are much better than they were in the previous years, and they only got better when Lizabeth became part of her life. But that didn’t mean the internal comments that she made were any less intrusive. To be perfectly honest, it was like wielding a double edged sword. Due to the rapid metabolic transformations that were made as a result of the separation, Lena’s senses were heightened to brand new heights, and  therefore her she could see, hear, and smell things that were well outside a normal person’s five senses. Even the senses and body language of others was open to her interpretation, and to Lizabeth’s comments. This in turn only causes more headaches, more nausea, and more complications with controlling her own personal outbursts. All of  the negative and disparaging things that Lena would never say in a lifetime, Lizabeth would say in one sentence.

Case in point: the lunch bell had just rang throughout the halls, which caused the students to move towards the cafeteria in waves. Lena followed shortly with them after putting away her books into her locker. To the left of her, another girl was putting her books away and simultaneously putting on lipstick. Much more than what was necessary. Lena barely paid any mind to it, because she personally didn’t like makeup. Her real problem was in the form of a voice coming over the loudspeaker. It was authoritative, but hid an underlying notice of fatigue. As if the owner of the voice wanted to be anywhere but at school.

The voice belonged to the Assistant principal of the high school, Mr. Levine. Everyone said how he was a nice enough man with an easy going personality. But to Lizabeth, he was nothing but a disgusting pervert who silently preyed on the junior and senior girls, specifically those in the AP classes. For every time that she saw him in the hallways, the first thing that captured her eyes was the unbridled lust that he somehow managed to conceal behind a mask of professionalism, as he spoke to the senior girls about important exams.  Nothing but a two faced charade that gauled both Lizabeth and Lena to no end at all. And today would be no different. Just hearing his voiced stirred up a storm inside Lena’s body as Lizabeth began another verbal assault.

You lustful old coon. What could you possibly need this time, aside from a hatchet to the head?”  Lizabeth said internally. At this, Lena allowed herself a small smirk and a chuckle at what she heard in her head,  but stopped to listen to the announcement.

“Good afternoon, all. Would the following students please gather in room 319 during this period?”  He then began to read off a list of the students that were needed in said room. One of them stood out to Lena as the most depressing: Sophia Catleen. She knew the girl well enough to know that she’s been in the AP classes since the 9th grade, and was seen as a true beauty among many of the high school guys. Luckily for her she turned them down, but was in no position to turn down Levine’s constant praise for her position as the top student of her English class.

“A position that was formerly held by us in sophomore and freshman year, remember?  Lizabeth interjected.

After reminiscing about her own short lived accomplishments, Lena though back to how much pity she felt for the poor girl. Unaware of the lustful leers that are sent her way when she crossed paths with Levine, oblivious to the cupping motions that he makes with his hands when he walked behind the girls and stares at their rear ends. The implicit actions alone send Lizabeth into a frenzy of swear words and death threats. The latest one was quite good. Good enough to be written down and recited to prisoners that have been sentenced to death in the sight of the court. Lena had finally put her books away just as Levine finished his announcement for the gathering of students, and began her walk to the cafeteria. Just as she turned one of the corners, she was introduced to the sight of Mr. Levine, being approached by at least two junior girls who seemed a tad too happy about something. A pity that they were unaware of what await them in his presence.

He seemed to answer whatever questions they had, and continued on his own way down the hall, right in Lena’s direction. They made eye contact for the briefest of seconds, but within them he sent a wink right at Lena, and in that moment, her stomach, moving up to her diaphragm was boiling hot, as Lizabeth swore out her anger at him.

“You disgusting, vile, lustful beast. Do not attempt to beguile me with your perverted actions, no matter how implicit they may be. There will come a day not so far from this one, where I will see you dragged off to Hell for all the wrongs that you’ve done and the penance you pay for these crimes will be unimaginable.”  Each word that Lizabeth said was dripping with venom  and left a  metallic taste in Lena’s mouth. Putting two fingers in her mouth and quickly retracting them, she was greeted with the sight of  blood.

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