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“Look at how his hair curls down on his forehead! Isn’t that so cute?” I whispered to my best friend Jenny who was seated next to me. Jenny and I have known each other since we were in diapers with teething rings. I could predict what she would do or say; it was even found that I could tell what she would be wearing that day, without her even telling me. We were both exactly alike also; in love with Mathew Jackson, in love with NSYNC, in love with the color pink, and the list went on. I still have memories of the pink hats we had that matched our pink dresses that we wore on Easter. And the Barbies we played with in Jenny’s pink dollhouse. Even the coloring books we colored completely pink. I also still have trillions of best friend necklaces Jenny and I bought and trillions of letters that spell out JENNY AND VALERIE ARE BEST FRIENDS FOREVER. So this is why I could tell you that Jenny would agree with my comment about Mathew’s hair.
“Yes it is!” she whispered.
We were still astounded to be in the same room as Mathew Jackson, the most handsome 8th grade boy; I take that back, the most handsome middle-school boy we both had ever seen. He was an accomplished student and athlete. He had everything and anything a guy would ever want, definitely a perfect 10. He was the president of Green Valley Middle School. Which explains what we were doing in the same room with him. He was going over some of the fundraisers we could do to raise money for our trip to Washington D.C. in April. When Jenny and I found out that Mathew was going to be present on the trip, we knew we had to be there.
The calendar on the wall told the month to be February, and if we skipped a few pages to April, “D.C. TRIP!” was marked in red and yellow, our school colors. We were going to be riding on a train all the way from Tennessee to Washington D.C. I wanted to raise a lot of money to help my parents out as much as possible, not to mention get noticed by Mathew, who was at the top of the fundraising committee, for raising the most money.
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"Mathew and his Amazing Journey to Break my Heart." 123HelpMe.com. 28 Feb 2020
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Jenny was once again seated next to me, this time in our train cabin. We were almost ready to leave the train station in Tennessee for Washington D.C when I decided to share my thoughts with Jenny: “I wonder what Mathew is doing right now.” I knew she would be wondering also.
“Me too,” she said. “Wouldn’t that be totally bodacious if he got seated in our cabin?” “That would be awesome, but totally unrealistic!” We knew that we most likely had no chance with Mathew, but we both found it fun to pretend we did. We looked back down at the magazine we were reading. Later, giggling about the outrageous clothing we saw in the magazine, Jenny and I looked up to find ourselves staring at Mathew and his friend Joe climbing into OUR CABIN! We couldn’t believe our eyes! Joe burped, pretty loudly, then both jumped up and landed at the same time, which made an enormous thud that echoed throughout the train. Jenny and I exchanged puzzled glances as the two exited the cabin.
The train was just starting to move when Mathew and Joe ran back in. He squinted at us. “Hi, girls,” he said with a smile. “Are you two sixth graders?” Was he talking to us? I kept asking myself. Finally I came to my senses and answered, as Jenny was still in her own state of shock.
“Yeah, we’re sixth graders.” I said. He nodded. Pressure was on us, what to say, what to say? “I’m Jenny, and this is,” EEEEK! I had just totally messed up, I was so nervous! “I’m sorry, I am Valerie, this is Jenny,” I said and pointed to my best friend. Our conversation was developed further into the train ride.
The next day was spent in a small colonial town. Walking on the streets, we saw a group of eighth graders that contained Mathew. We smiled at him as he was walking by and he shouted, “Hey Val.”
“I have to go to the bathroom, come with me Valerie,” Jenny said, there was a weird tone in her voice but I was still overly excited that Mathew hadn’t forgotten my name. She pulled me into an old wig shop bathroom, checked under all the stalls to find that the restroom was uninhabited. “What in the world happened last night with him, Val?” she screamed at me. The loopy grin on my face suddenly transformed into a frown, I had no idea what Jenny was asking me. I thought for a second but still couldn’t figure it out.
“What?” is all I could think to say. My eyes were burning as I looked into her saddened face. Something had hurt her so bad and I couldn’t stand to see her so depressed. Behind the sorrow I had for her was confusion. This sort of thing had never happened before; never has Jenny been so unpredictable to me.
“What did you and him do last night and why wasn’t I included? All these years, I thought you were a better friend then that but I guess I was wrong.” She ran out of the bathroom and into the street. I stood in the bathroom, completely bemused. Then it hit me, how could I have been so blind! On the street when we saw Mathew, he had only said hi to me, I don’t remember him even looking at Jenny, she must have been so jealous. But this wasn’t my fault, why would she be so angry with me? I had to talk to her, make things right with her. I ran out of the shop to find Jenny nowhere.
Later that day, Jenny was spotted standing with one of our friends and Mathew. Oh no, I thought. My other friends told me that Jenny was telling people that her and I got to see Mathew again in the Wig Shop.
“She said he told her that he thought you were obnoxious and ugly and she was smart and pretty,” my friend Rachel declared. This was humiliating, and I was furious. I let my anger take over me. I am not weak; I can beat anyone, especially Jenny, at anything. I won’t let people think stupid things about me, I thought.
“Oh yeah,” I said to Mathew the next day, “She’s telling everyone that you and her are going to the turn around dance together at the end of spring.” His mouth first formed into a frown, and then he smiled and burst with laughter. He made fun of Jenny, saying she was ugly and flat chested. I couldn’t believe the words that were coming out of his, and my, mouth. But my evil remarks concerning Jenny slurred together as tears filled my eyes. At that point, I didn’t care what Mathew, Rachel, or anyone else thought about me, only Jenny.
That night I realized how stupid letting Mathew come between me and Jenny. No guy could ever take her place because I have more fun with her than I have with anyone else. We tell each other everything, which includes things I couldn’t tell Mathew. Things had to be made exact with Jenny, I thought I would die if they weren’t. Meanwhile, Jenny was suffering from the humiliation of Mathew’s comments about the rumor that I had started.
“I talked to her about you, Valerie,” Rachel was always involved in situations such as these. “She said she wanted to get even with you and she tried to think of something to do. Then she just broke down crying.” The thought of Jenny crying upset me, but comprehending that she didn’t really want to get revenge on me enlightened me. I wasn’t sure if she was going to be ready to apologize to me though. Hence, I made the first move.
“I’m really sorry Jenny,” I apologized sincerely. She was still unsure and stared ahead with her mouth slightly parted, but I could tell she was willing to forgive me. I knew I was going to have to make this good. “I don’t know what I was thinking when all this was happening…I didn’t mean to hurt you one bit. And I realized that nothing is more important to me than you and I don’t know where I would be without you Jenny!” And now it was her turn. “I’m sorry too Val.” She looked straight at me, and her sympathetic gaze made me melt. “Everything I’ve ever done has been with you expect for these past few days. I can’t say how much I missed you! You matter so much to me and I think we should remain friends forever.”
“Wonder what Yuri is doing right now,” Jenny said slowly. And in unison, we both screamed, “WHO CARES!”