A girl waits in line for her food, the McDonalds
staff rushing around like racehorses. She stares at nothing, the blurs of the workers
not registering in her mind as she ponders. What she ponders is unknown to her, for her
mind lazily sloshes around in her head and refuses to do otherwise. She hears muffled and murmured voices that
make no linguistic sense, the beeping of grills and fryers and more mindless chatter. Her mind focuses momentarily on the lady ordering
a few feet away. The lady wears a violet coat that charms her
wide curves and speaks with no problem as she orders. A few punches in the debit machine later she
bustles herself next to the girl with a quaint smile. “Lovely day,” she comments to the girl. “I think Spring’s finally hit us!” Was it a lovely day? The girl gazes outside and sees a world of
darkness hidden behind birdsong and blossoming green trees. “It’s wonderful,” the girl says. “Do you like Spring?” “Certainly, it’s my favourite season. Are you one for the flowers as well?” Her robust features gleam. “Allergies,” the girl utters. “I like Winter.” The lady chortles. “That’ll do it.” She pauses for several moments before speaking
up again. “I must thank you for lending your ear to
me, miss. Most just give me a nasty look.” She was kind. “You’re welcome,” the girl says at last, not
sure what else to say. “Most don’t think I’m such a nice person.” She hadn’t meant for that to slip out. Her hands clam up and her chest is constricted
by thick vines. “Oh, dear. I can’t possibly imagine why someone would
think you’re a bad person.” The lady seemed confused as she adjusted her
purple jacket. “A bad person? Well, I’m not like everyone else. I like to read, I like to play video games,
I like to think and theorize but people tell me I can’t think too much. They don’t like me for laughing too loud,
for losing myself in a book’s universe, for not being small enough to fit into that dress. No one wants a girl that can’t assert herself
but are quick to bark down on me for being “bossy;” I can’t look in the mirror without
noticing my stomach, without judging myself, hating that reflection. They want girls who are more sporty, so I
join the team and feel so out of place because I hear the whispers, I see them giggle and
laugh and point and smirk and sneer until I leave them. I can’t walk into the classroom because I
hear and see and feel and am crushed by what they think, their eyes like boulders on my
bones. I can’t read, I can’t play, I can’t think
because their words are always filling up my thoughts like a water balloon until it
all finally bursts and I’m left as a scrap, a shred of garbage that’s stepped on and finally
thrown into the dumpster where she belongs. I’m a bad person because I let everything
get to me; I can’t even order a hamburger without my heart rushing like I’m in a marathon,
my words stumbling over themselves like drunken men tumbling out of the bar. I’m a bad person because I have nowhere else
to be.” A girl wants nothing more than to say this. A girl needs to breathe. A girl wants someone to finally listen, someone
to prove her wrong. A girl desperately wants to feel like she’s
someone. But she chokes. The words are caught in her throat like a
lump of food and she chokes. “Are you alright?” The lady leans in, her purple coat jostling. A girl blinks and clears her throat. She nods and motions to her throat. “Just caught something, sorry.” A girl unwillingly lies. “Order 73!” The worker calls, his words blurring in her
head. A girl takes her baggie of food slowly and
hesitantly walks away. “Thank you,” A girl smiles to the purple lady
before returning to her broken thoughts. What more is a girl than worthless? A girl is only worthless when she has nothing
else to call herself. A girl is on her last life, a boundless cliff
before her. A worthless girl wipes her eyes on a stained
sleeve and leaves.