It was a normal day; a day like any other. I awoke at 5 AM to the sounds of birdsongs and Harry Styles’s voice angelically singing the chorus to “What Makes You Beautiful,” which was radiating from my iPod Touch. My breath tasted awful, I probably shouldn’t have snuck to the kitchen and ate that cookie dough while my parents were asleep. As I rose out of bed, I felt another twinge of regret from my late night binge and rushed to the bathroom. Like I said, a normal day like any other.
After the color returned to my face, and I brushed my teeth I started heading to the kitchen. The day didn’t feel like a breakfast day, so I sipped on some orange juice. While savoring the taste of citrus mixing with toothpaste in my mouth, I glanced at the clock on the microwave. It was 5:50AM, did I spend that long in the bathroom? I shot a glance at the freezer, and a shiver ran down my spine as I visualized the half eaten tub of cookie dough. Shamefully, I opened the drawer next to the fridge and grabbed a spoon. But as I started to open the freezer, my mouth salivating at the sugar waiting for me in its cold plastic packaging, I heard shuffling from upstairs.
I quickly shut the door and returned to my glass of orange juice as my father entered.
“Good morning, Tracy.” He said, paternally. He examined my face for a moment before adding, “Got into the cookie dough again?”
I put my hand, still holding the conspicuous spoon, behind my back instinctively, trying to get out a very convincing “What makes you think that?” but only succeeding in snorting on my half-swallowed OJ. My father smiled in amusement, handing me a roll of paper towels while simultaneously texting something on his Blackberry. “Careful there!” he said with a chuckle, “You’ll need all of that orange juice to get the energy you need for today!”
I might’ve asked what he meant by that if I hadn’t been so annoyed and embarrassed. Wiping my face off, and wishing for nothing more than for my father to just get out and get to work already, I said, “Thanks, Dad,” while barely suppressing an eye roll. I probably didn’t have to hide my teenage disgruntlement though, because he was still fixated on that tiny plastic keyboard, clicking away as he walked through the kitchen. “Where are you going?” I asked before he could reach the door.
“What?” he said, not even looking up. His phone buzzed, and he said, “I’m off to work–you’d better get ready for school, honey. You never know when it’s going to be a big day!”
Whatever he meant by that I couldn’t tell, as he did not elaborate before heading into the hallway and out the front door. And while, as I said, this was a normal day like any other, my father was correct about one thing: that I needed to get ready for school. With the clock now reading 5:55 and my mousy brown hair looking positively feral, I was in no position to be headed to school.
I rushed upstairs and blasted the sweet sweet sounds of pop rock as I groggily got myself together. When I was ready, I switched over to my portable earbuds (after spending about 15 minutes untangling them, of course) and, shoving an untoasted piece of toast in my mouth (because who doesn’t have time for bread?), ventured out the front door and into the unforgivingly harsh light of morning.
The rumble of the school bus gave me the perfect ambiance for a mid-morning nap. A nap which, if I’d had it my way, could’ve been longer, but the wheels of the bus had unfortunately ceased to go round and round. I followed the line of tired students into the highschool and prepared for a long boring day of doing anything I could to avoid learning anything in my classes.
At the strike of the 8:00 AM bell, Ms. Rogers, the most dreaded Calc 1 substitute teacher, jauntily walked into class. I opened my text-book and pulled out some sheets. And with a sigh, I started folding an origami crane.
“Tracy ‘cookie dough’ Evans, there is a message for you!” I snapped out of my origami frog reverie (the latest in a dreamy, artistic 2-hour sequence) to see the teacher waiting with a piece of paper. I cringed. ‘Cookie dough’ Evans, from the freaking substitute teacher?
I felt the eyes of the rest of the class burying their gaze into me as I walked to the front and accepted the slip.
“Please come outside; I’m waiting in the parking lot. It’s urgent.
Still confused, I left the classroom and made my way out to where my Mom was waiting for me in her Dodge Charger.
“Hey Mom, is everything okay?” I asked nervously. She didn’t seem stressed, but the energy in the car was weird.
“Yeah sweetie, everything is fine. We do have some news for you, but I think it’s best if we go home first.” Her calm tone was slightly reassuring, but did not answer any of my questions. I studied her face as she started to drive, and found no hints of stress.
“Maybe we are going on a surprise vacation,” I thought to myself. I allowed myself to feel some excitement, as we passed the suburban houses dotting the street. It was still during the day, so there wasn’t much going on. It was weird to see the street so quiet, there’s usually some liveliness when the bus passes through at the end of the school day.
After a few more minutes, we pulled into our driveway, and my mom released a slight sigh. My nerves returned as she looked at me solemnly and said, “Tracy, please know that no matter what, your father and I still love you.”
My mind was racing, what on Earth could be going on? As my mother led me inside, I felt the urge to run but then my dad opened the door and invited me in.
As I stepped through the threshold of the door I heard a beautiful voice count down from three, and then an angelic “You’re insecure, don’t know what for, you’re turning heads when you walk through the door” crawls out from the living room. My heart skipped a beat, and I ran over to see Zayn, Harry, Louis, Niall, and Liam standing in front of my couch singing “What Makes You Beautiful.” My jaw dropped.
Before I could say anything, I felt my mother’s hand on my shoulder. She knelt down and gave me a hug. “You’re going to live with One Direction now.”