It all started when Galen cheated on his math test. I was walking down
the hall on the way to my locker when I saw a group crowded around it.
Wait! It wasn’t my locker they were huddled around; it was Galen’s. As I
grabbed my sports bag for P.E., I heard the words, “Sure… Math test…
Help… Cheat… Next week...” I was horrified. Who was going to cheat? And
who would want to help someone cheat? I had a mystery on my hands, and I
was determined to solve it. I knew about how long I had to solve it, but
I had no clue how. And then there was the fact that I didn’t have any
clues. I could go to Mr. Rye, our math teacher, but if I did, someone
would tell the bullies and they would jump at a chance to tease someone.
I was in this alone, until I bumped into him.
“Why is everyone crowded around my locker?” Brittney asked herself.
“Wait,” she thought, “that’s not my locker. Is that, really, it is,
that’s Galen’s locker!” She was curious, but decided to mind her own
business. “Besides, I don’t really care what they are talking about,”
But then, something caught her attention: she heard “Sure… Math test…
Help… Cheat… Next week...” “WHAT!?!” she almost shouted. “I have got to
do something!” she thought as she rushed down the hall. She wasn’t
paying attention as she rounded the corner, and bumped into someone;
expecting to be made fun of, she waited for a hideous laugh, but one
never came. She had to get up sometime, so she pried her eyes open, and
“ Are you ok?” the handsome boy hovering over her asked.
“ I-um-I-I’m ok,” she stuttered.
“Oh good,” the boy said with relief. “Mom is going to ask how my day
went and I don’t want to say that I sent someone to the nurse.
Especially a girl!”
“That would be embarrassing!” she laughed. “ What class are you headed
“P.E. What about you?”
“I guess we’re going to the same place, because that’s where I’m bumping
my way to.”
The boy laughed, but he wasn’t laughing at her; he was laughing
good-naturedly and it wasn’t mean. It made Brittney want to tell more
jokes, just to hear that laugh again.
“What’s your name?”
“I'm Branden. And you are?”
“Brittney. How old are you?
“13. And you are around… 12-13?
“12, good guess!”
When they came to the P.E. room, they heard a loud “OOOHHH” from one
side of the gym. Brittney immediately recognized them as her friends,
She walked over to them, “It’s not like you think it is,” she began.
“Mmhhm!” her friend Daisy smiled testily.
“Daisy!!! Wipe that smile off your face!”
“I think it’s romantic!” vouched Taylor.
“You think everything’s romantic!” argued Olivia.
“TAY! LIVVY! Quit it!”
“I haven’t shared my opinion yet!” Crystal whined.
“Ugh! All right, go ahead and shout it to the world!”
“ Knock it OFF, you guys. She doesn't want to talk about it! OK?”
“Oh, all right.” they all said.
“Thank you, Crystal. What would I do without you?” she exclaimed.
“Attention girls and boys!” the cheery P.E. teacher, Mrs. May, smiled.
“Today’s sport is volleyball.”
“Well, you’re real good at volleyball!” Brittney laughed as she and
Branden strolled down the hall to lunch.
“Yeah, well, I really enjoyed your amazing passes! I couldn't even hit
“You weren't much better!”
“At least I could make a decent pass!”
“Arguing already?” asked Taylor as she walked past.
“We are not arguing!” They both said in unison.
“Ok… See ya at our table.”
“Hey, I don’t have anyone to sit with, and-” Branden began.
“I’m sure you could find some boys who will take you in, and, if not,
you can just sit at a random boy’s table and jump into a conversation.”
“Sounds simple enough, but I was wondering if I could sit with you?”
“Maybe, but I have to ask the others. Besides, you might not want to sit
with a bunch of girls.”
“Ok. Maybe you’re right, I guess I should sit with some boys,” and he
“Hey, wait” she called to him.
“Yeah?” he asked.
“Earlier this morning I overheard a conversation, and the impression I
got was that someone is going to cheat on a math test next week.”
“Did I hear you right? Someone is going to cheat on a math test?”
“Ok, why not just tell your math teacher?”
“There are bullies at this school.”
“Oh, then I’m about as clueless as you are.”
“Literally,” she said laughing.
When she sat down, she asked, “Hey, would you be okay with Brandon
sitting with us?”
“You mean your new boyfriend?” asked Daisy.
“NO! The new guy. I’ve never had a boyfriend before and-”
“Now would be a good time to start,” Tay said in a singsong voice.
“GAH!” she exclaimed and did a faceplant.
“Have you made your decision yet?” he asked as he walked over.
“We’re fine with it, so long as you’re OK with being the laughing stock
of the whole school,” grinned Livvy.
“Ugh,” Brittany groaned.
Branden frowned and walked away. “I’m only doing this because I don’t
want to be laughed at,” he yelled back.
“That’s understandable,” she said.
“Why did you do that? Now he’s gonna hate me forever. He’ll think that I
told you to say that, and he probably won’t speak to me for three
months. I can’t live that long without talking to him and-”
“And you really are crazy about him,” smiled Taylor, giving a romantic
“Crystal! Tell them that I do NOT have a crush on him. They only listen
“Well, the way that you were talking about him seemed like-”
“OK, she does NOT have a crush on him, understand?”
“Thank you, Crystal.”
“Yea, that’s OK. Come over to my house tomorrow?”
“OK, see ya.”
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