It was now all over.
Mara Llewellyn, Stuart Greer, and Irene Haughton were now officially graduates from Harrison Creek High School, the school that they were all forced to attend due to the “unforgivable sin” of befriending the hated Tanya Shinnok many years ago. To be honest, the kids don’t have much of a choice in that matter.
“I can’t believe that this is all over,” said Mara.
“I’m not,” said Stuart with a strange look on his face. “It’s just like that story is repeating itself.”
“Like when we got that letter from the Stranger?” said Pearl Tanner, who at age 14 was the youngest high school graduate. They all stared at her. “At least Mrs. Schindler won’t be cyber-stalking us from behind bars.”
“Still can’t believe that Tara’s mom was the Stranger,” said Irene.
“Yeah, who knew?” said Mara. “Anyway, I’m feeling kind of depressed.”
“Why?” said Irene.
“It’s our last day here,” said Mara with a look of concern on her face. “After this, there is no more. Our time as high schoolers is over, as is our lives as teenagers. Soon, it’s off to college with us. Irene, you’re doing fashion design in San Diego, Stuart, you’re heading to D.C., and I’m going into game design at Texas A&M. This is it; it’s time for us to end our youth and prepare to enter the harsh and complicated, for better or worse.”
“I know,” said Stuart, with tears on his face. “It’s so hard to say goodbye to everything that we knew. We’re all going our separate ways and I don’t know if we’re ever going to see each other again.”
“We still have Facebook,” said Pearl.
“But for how long,” said Irene. “We could be making new friends within a month and forget the friends that we had in high school. It’s a thing that I fear the most.”
Shara Shinnok, overhearing the conversation, came to them, saying, “Don’t think of this as the end; instead, think of this as a new beginning, a time for new discoveries and new experiences. We have the future before us, but we can’t have that future if we keep holding onto the past. Like, remember when you had to let go of Tanya in order to move on with your lives and enjoy your high years. Now that those years are coming to a close, we need to let go of our youth and go on with our lives. Besides, you’ll never know when you’re going to see each other again. I most certainly am wondering if I’ll see you guys again; after all, my other friends and I are jetting off to Fresno next week.”
She said to them, “Well I had fun hanging out with you guys, but it’s time for me to head back to California and my other friends. I’ll see you on the flip side.”
With that, she bounded out the room.
Mara, Stuart, Irene, and Pearl stood together for the final time, knowing that even though all things (such as their high school years) came to an end, they knew that for better or worse, they would see a brand-new beginning.
- Arnold Jameson Prisner (StoryADay 2014) (kdorholt.wordpress.com)
- School (thatguy27.wordpress.com)
- You Made It to Graduation! Now What? (forwardthinking.ashford.edu)
- How to Make the Case for Graduate Education (chronicle.com)