"Why would you like to attend the academy?" The representative asked me in her thick British accent before taking a sip of her tea that my mother made for us. Contemplating the question for a second I finally come to an answer.
"As you see, I live in a middle-of-no-where town. Almost half of our graduates actually go onto college, while a handful will go out-of-state to do it. From there, only two or three will actually make something of themselves. Going to your academy would get me a foot in the door, from there I can see Oxford on the horizon. I guess my answer is that I want to do something with my education. I want to change the world and I think your school would teach me the necessities during my senior year of high school."
She gives me a long look before standing and holding out her hand.
"Well Miss Harris, it was a pleasure interviewing you."
"Thank you," I take her hand lightly shaking it and lead her to the door.
"If you receive the scholarship, you will get a letter in the mail in two weeks time." She informs me before wishing me good luck and leaving my country house in a black car. When the car is out of sight, behind the trees, I went back inside;
"You did well," My mother told me with a smile spreading across her face, "I'm so proud of you."
-Two Weeks Later-
The bus rumbled down the long gravel road to my house. I anxiously tapped my foot, awaiting the abrupt stop. When it came, I nearly flew out of the bus, running to the mailbox. In the distance I heard the bus leaving our property. Flipping through the bills and other letters I finally hit an envelope that had the academy's name on it.
Tucking the other pieces of mail under my arm, I rip open the envelope and quickly read the paper. If I didn't get the scholarship, I just wanted to know, like ripping off a band-aid.
"Miss Harris," I murmured under my breath, "We are happy to inform you that you have received the Young Writers Scholarship..." I repeated it over and over again practically yelling it. I sprinted down the gravel driveway, yelling my brother Jason's name.
"What is it Tay?" He calls back from the shed. Going to him, finding him covered in grease and sweat while he fixed the 1967 Chevy.
"I DID IT! I GOT THE SCHOLARSHIP! I'M GOING TO LONDON!" I squealed.
"That's great Tay!" He hugged me.
When mother got home that night from working at the diner, she held the letter in her hands and began to cry.
"Taylor, I can't even tell you how proud I am of you." She beamed at me. We made a cake to celebrate and played a couple of hands of cards. Mother went to bed early, after a long day of work, but Jason and I stayed up, surfing the website of my new school.
"Taylor," he said in all seriousness, "I'm so happy for you. Do you think you're going to miss it here?"
"Well obviously I'll miss you and mom." I reassure him.
"I mean Louisiana, our little farmhouse, the diner, school," He mumbles.
"Of course I'll miss Louisiana, our farmhouse and the diner. This is my home. As for school, no. It's not like I had any, really close friends anyway. I just feel like I'm making a new beginning for myself, you know?" I was telling the truth. My best friend was Jason and there was nothing I was going to miss about my school. I bet most people don't even know who I am. I'm ready to make a name for myself.
"Yeah, I get it." He nodded before cracking a smile, "Just don't get a stick up your ass when you're in that 'prestigious British school.'" He fakes a British accent.
-Two Months Later-
I took my time waking up this morning. Shifting in my creaky bed, listening to the birds twittering outside my window. I glanced around my now bare room. Soon, Jason was practically pulling me out of bed. Brushing back my blonde hair in a ponytail I stared at my reflection in the bathroom mirror that helped me get ready so many mornings before. Skipping down the stairs, I see all my suitcases by the door.
"Finally hitting you?" Jason sees from the breakfast table.
"I just didn't think I would feel this much remorse. I thought I would leave here without a doubt, but realizing I'm going to be half way across the world in just a matter of a few hours, it scares me... is that bad?"
"Of course not, Tay." He hugs me.
Realizing we were going to miss my flight if we left any later, we headed out the door. Stopping by the diner, I said goodbye to my mother.
"I wish I could come with you two to the airport," Mother said with tears in her eyes.
"I'll call you as soon as I'm there and we can Skype tomorrow night. Remember I taught you and Jason how to do that?" I comfort her. She nodded, kissing my forehead one more time before I left. An hour later, we were at my gate, waiting for them to call my flight. When they finally did, Jason and my eyes locked. We hugged.
"I'm going to miss you," I tell him.
"I'll miss you too. But just remember, you're going to change the world. Like you said in your interview, this is only a foot in the door." He reminds me. I nod, quickly wiping the tears from my cheek. I make myself let go of him before reluctantly getting on the plane.
Eight hours later I was breathing British air. It was a hard thing to believe that this was happening. Someone accidentally bumped into me, causing me to snap back to reality. I spotted a bald man holding a sign that read my last name. He assisted me to the car and knew exactly where to take me.
Gazing out of my window there, I watched as the vibrant, historic city passed me by. The driver stopped in front of a beautiful brick building with a small black metal fence approximately waist-high, ran across the front.
"Housing, Ma'am." He explained. I removed my things from the trunk, entering the gate and opening the door to my new home.
I guess I expected everyone to be strict and prestigious and ladylike. But, of course my expectations were wrong. These were a bunch of teenage girls anyway. Girls were running up and down halls talking to one another, some playing cards on the ground, a few playing soccer in the entryway. I checked my sheet that read "213" as my room number.
"Excuse me," I asked a tall girl with brown hair who was playing soccer.
"Yeah," she smiled.
"Do you know where room 213 is?"
"Oh," she looked grinned. "LIBBY!" She shouted.
"WHAT DO YOU WANT!" A girl from the second floor leaned over the railing with her hair half curled and a nail file in hand.
"Meet your new roommate," The girl told Libby. Libby scanned me before looking back at the other girl.
"She looks American."
"That's cause I am," I tell her.
"Come," she nods her head. I carry my bags up the stairs and followed Libby down the hallway. Squeezing through crowded groups of girls. Libby finally stopped and kicked open the door to what had to be our room.
Two beds were pressed against opposing walls with small nightstands next to them. There were also two desks. It was pretty obvious which side was hers. She had messy red sheets on her bed and a red framed mirror on her desk with a red curling iron on her desk.
Taking a seat at her desk, she continues to curl her hair while I admire her walls. Posters were hung up of different bands and celebrities. I recognized a few but I never really kept up with those things.
"What's the band that you have up so much?" I ask. She glances up and realizes what I'm talking about.
"Do you live in a cave?" She laughed, but when I stay serious she coughs it off and answers, "They're a British boy band called CHET. The number one band in Britain and number two in the world. Right next to Justin Bieber. Yeah their name is really dumb but it's all their initials. Charlie, Henry, Elliot, and Timothy."
"Oh," It hit me that I probably have been living in a cave.
"So," she twirls her hair around the iron, looking at me through her mirror, "What's your name."
"Taylor," I tell her.
"Where are you from again?" Libby asks.
"Well, welcome Taylor from Louisiana." She grins. "Aren't you the one that got the Young Writers Scholarship?" When I nod, she tells me, "Congrats!"
"Are you here for anything particular?" I begin to unpack.
"Ballet, mainly. However, I'm not very good at academics. My mom is the instructor for the dance classes, so she pulled strings to get me in." She shrugs.
"Still, you're here," I smile, trying to be positive.
"You have no bloody idea. You think this place is great now... but just wait, sweetheart," she smiles apologetically. "Not everything is what it seems."
Yes, I understand the first chapter is just a tad boring. But just wait, it's about to get really interesting. I feel like first chapters are boring... are they? Seriously.
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