I was standing in the middle of the cafeteria, it felt as though there was water reaching over my head. It ran through me and rushed over my skin making me feel lifeless and invisible. I was gasping for air and being pushed down to the bottom with the pressure of the water, choking. “Jackie don’t be such a girl, it’s just a little prank” said Junior “are you tough or not”. I was snapped back into reality, the water drained and I realized that I was in need of a snap decision. We had run into the cafeteria and grabbed a peach fruit cup, Junior had gotten his group to play a prank on Mrs. Chutney and some how I was pushed into it too. I looked at the stained yellow walls and blue tables with small benches attached to them. I felt the walls slowly closing in on me, I don’t think I should do this,  I thought. A few minutes later I found myself standing around Mrs. Chutney’s chair pouring Missouri’s finest peach slices all over it. The room was silent other than the faint pouring of peach juice and the occasional plop of a peach. What are you doing, I thought, you let five no good kids pressure you into doing a horrible thing, what have I done. When the job was done I placed my hand on the chair and felt the seat, it was soaking wet and when I picked my hand up it was sticky and smelled like peach.  The room was overcome with the smell of peaches, the chair was wet and covered in mushy fruit, I was a trouble maker. All I could think about was the fate that I would sucome to if Mrs. Chutney found out what I had done. I stood up from my crouched position at the teachers desk and saw the giggling children, some of them were jumping out of their chairs and running around the classroom just thinking about Mrs. Chutney having peaches all over her bum.

Everyone sat down when Mrs. Chutney walked in, she stopped as she walked in and sniffed the air and she let herself smile at the lingering smell of the peaches. She wrote something on the board however before we could read it, she sat down. The kids began laughing when she turned white, as she stood up I immediately regretted what I had done. She turned around to look at her chair and we saw her soaking wet skirt covered in gross looking peach sauce, then she turned around we saw her face had turned from white to completely red. The oldest trick in the book had hit her the hardest. As she ran out of the room I buried my face in my hands. Then when the class turned silent I looked up, they were all looking at the board. I looked over at the large words in white chalk and immediately became largely puzzled. Mrs. Chutney was new, she had questioned the work we had done and the way we were taught, the boys who put me up to this dirty work were upset and ruthless towards anyone who questioned the ways they were used to, Mrs. Chutney was innocent… She was ready to apologize for her fault. I walked up to the board and ran my hands across the smooth black surface to see if it could be true. I ran back to my seat, my feet thumping against the floor with every step. I felt so diminutive… I tried to quell them but the hot tears that were building up came through and the lump in my throat made it hard to breath, I couldn’t live with myself. The fact that I had made someone feel so utterly terrible made me feel like a piece of rotten garbage.

I had never gotten in trouble before, I knew what Momma would do to me and how bad Papa would think of me. The second I heard Mrs. Chutney say my name of the people she wanted to see after class the next day I made a run for it. I jumped out of my chair and tried to squeeze myself through the crack in the window. I looked directly at the scratchy bush that awaited me when I fell, still I didn’t care. I was clawing at the rough bricks that left crathes all over my hands, just then a gust of wind flew my dress up and everyone in the class began to laugh at my underpants. Then I felt a tug at my ankles and someone’s sweaty hands pulled me in.

“Miss. Wilson thats not the way out. Please see me after class, same as the rest of you I called” she said. She had gotten everyone who was in the conspiracy. I groaned and sat back down not acknowledging the laughter and staring of all the kids who had just witnessed my attempt of escape.

After class Mrs. Chutney explained to us that she was not upset about our little stunt. She just merely wanted our help instead of calling our parents. In a nutshell we were sentenced to community service. She said that the next  day we would help load some scrap paper to a company that will use it for other goods. We all agreed thinking that it would be easy and that we got off easy. Boy were we wrong.

The next day we were pulled out of class to begin loading the paper. We walked down the hall thinking that we got to miss class and all we had to do was be outside and load paper, like a second recess time. When we got outside we were smacked in the face by our own dreams, we gaped at the giant stacks of paper that were standing in front of a small wagon labeled Waldoorf Paper. We lifted many stacks, five minutes in our hands were clammy and our muscles were sore. For the next few hours we both regretted our prank and forgot about it by having contests with who could hold the most paper and racing to get the next stack. The wagon workers laughed at us and our juvenile behavior. The boys yelled things at me like “come on Jackie carry more paper, don’t be such a girl”. And at that point I had had it. I put the stack I was holding on the truck and turned to face the five boys. I was infuriated at the trouble these boys had gotten me in.

“I AM A GIRL! I WON’T TAKE THIS ANYMORE! YOU ARE THE REASON I’M IN THIS MESS! You’d better be glad I’m not smacking you upside the head. Now be quiet and don’t wrap me up in your dumb acts for attention ever again” I yelled. Once we had finished we walked back the the halls the boys jumping around and joking with each other about their strength, I however walked on the other side of the hallway with a giddy feeling in my stomach that came with the new found confidence that I got from standing up for myself. I walked down the hallway with confidence, I had stop the water from flowing and floated to the top breathing the fresh air and feeling like I had conquered the world.

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