• Vol. 07
  • Chapter 07

Frida Kahlo’s got nothing on me

I just can’t go back to school like this. I just can’t. I’ll be crucified by everyone. This hair experiment just did not go as planned. Short feminine pixie look was the plan. Victim of a terrible head trauma was the result. I want to die. Skipping school is not an option. I have no option. Only despair at the situation and my lack of foresight.

I’ll be the laughing stock for weeks. Maryam and Co. will seize the opportunity to despise me even more. Maryam loathes my lack of conformity. I don’t toe the line and she doesn’t know a world beyond the line. Luke and his two numb-nut sidekicks will find as many new insults that their monosyllabic vocabulary can muster. Miss Jarvis and Mr Reed will undoubtedly enjoy the fodder I present to them. They are the worst of all the bullies. Using me as the butt when the day in class is slow.

I think long and hard about my predicament. I conclude they are far more fragile me. I am the one that feeds their egos. I give them the opportunity to believe they are smarter, wittier, and prettier. I elevate their pecking order. I have withstood them and return for more on a daily. I suffer these bullies for their sake not mine. They are weak. They are fragile and cheap.

My fortitude grows as I look in the mirror. I feel power and defiance as I take off the t-shirt. I put on the retro tea-dress, the hobnail boots and add a ribbon festooned with flowers to my head.

Flowers and colours and abstract prints. And a badly shaved head.

I stare at myself in the mirror. My eyes igniting the fire in my belly.

You’ve got this.