“Madeline!!!!!! Let’s MOO-ve it!”
Madeline sleepily rolled over and dampened the shrieking with her pillow. She took a deep breath while stretching her arms to hold on to the iron head board. She rolled over again, throwing the pillow on the floor, and reached for her stereo remote. Just like the night before, track number eight picked up where it left off in it’s obscure repeat.
In the distance Madeline could hear her mother’s feet pounding up the stairs. The stomping grew louder until her mom threw open the door and flipped the light switch.
“You’re going to miss the bus and I am NOT driving you to school today,” her Mom protested.
“Jesus, Ma. I’m getting up; now, get out of my room,” Madeline mumbled.
As her mother left the room, Madeline sat up and swung her legs off the side of her bed. They dangled for a few moments before she reached her toes to the cool floor. The dazed teenager danced on her toes across the hardwood floor to the even colder tiled bathroom floor. Attempting to blast herself into reality, Madeline jumped into the cold shower and shivered as the water ran off her goose bumped body. She closed her eyes. After what seemed like ten minutes, she quickly lathered her body and washed her hair.
“MAD-e-LINNNNN! Are you coming downstairs for breakfast?”
Ignoring her mother’s cry Madeline rustled her long locks with the towel and dropped it on the bathroom floor. She quickly outlined her eyes with a smoky pencil, brushed her lashes in black and ran back to the bedroom where she threw on a Co-Naked Lacrosse shirt paired with a green and brown flannel. The outfit was made complete with shredded jeans and black army boots.
“Madelinnnnneeeee! The bus is coming!!!!!”
“Jesus, Mom, I’m coming,” Madeline whispered as she ran down the stairs two at a time. She barreled through the foyer and towards the kitchen. Madeline saw the cheese wagon, through the family room window, screaming down the hill towards her home. She grabbed her lunch money, held a dry piece of toast between her teeth and ran out the door with school bag in hand.
April, Madeline’s bus driver for years, was already waiting at the edge of the driveway with the door opened. April was one of the ‘cool drivers’; Marty was cool, too. They both rocked a permed fem-mullet, smelled of cigarette smoke and freely yelled at the kids. Definitely cool.
Madeline was the first stop for bus number 56. She hopped the steps and headed to the back while her younger brother sat towards the front. The book bag slammed against the window as she plopped herself on the edge of the seat waiting for her girlfriend to get picked up at the next stop.
During the forty-five minute trip, Madeline spent the time gossiping with Sam and yelling at the younger kids. By the time they got to school, Madeline was wide awake thanks to the Vivarin Sam brought with her. The two pals, with near-matching flannel shirts, shuffled down the hallway to their home room: The Auditorium.
As they passed the threshold they both glanced up about four feet to see a two week old salami sandwich slowly rotting away. They glanced at each other, giggled, and returned down the ramp to the front of the room.