Amazing Kids! Magazine

Curriculum Day

By Jordyn Bryant, age 16, Maine

 

Beep, beep, beep. There went the alarm clock. An arm swung over and hit the button to turn the clock off before returning to the bed. “Stupid alarm clock, why did I buy you again?” a tired voice asked. In the bed was a girl named Nicole. She nestled into the soft blankets before shutting her eyes. Until someone ran into the room. She shrieked. After calming down and getting a clear vision of the intruder, it was none other than her older brother, Shay.

“What are you doing here, big bro?” she asked, rubbing her eyes.

“You’re gonna be late for school, that’s what! Now get up, Nicole!”

“Hmm? Can’t I sleep for five more minutes?” she mumbled as she rested her head on the pillow until Shay pulled her out of the bed. Nicole’s body hit the floor with a thump. She sat up straight and rubbed her head.

“What the he—?!”

“Watch your language,” Shay interrupted.

“That’s unfair. You get to swear, but I don’t?”

“Because I’m older than you. Now get up, and get dressed.”

Without another word, Shay left the room. Nicole stood up and stuck her tongue out. She sighed and threw on a T-shirt and jeans. She then walked downstairs to the living room, only to see her brother already at the front door.

“Took you long enough.” Shay crossed his arms.

“Shut up.”

Nicole walked past Shay and sat in the backseat of the car. Shay followed, and they drove off to Heartland Academy. The drive was short since they didn’t live that far from the academy. They drove past a playground. Nicole plugged her headphones into her phone and looked out the car window, watching the little kids swinging on the swings sets and kids sliding down the slide. Nicole got out of the car, not bothering to wave bye to Shay. He looked sad, but hey, that’s how she always acted towards him.

Nicole walked through the halls of the academy, trying to get to her class. It was hard to navigate this school since it was so big with so many rooms. You could literally play a game of hide-and-seek in this place. She walked into the classroom and sat down next to one of her friends, Tori.

“Hey, Nicole.” Tori smiled.

“Hey, Tori. What’s up?”

“Nothing much. But did you hear that Curriculum Day is tomorrow?”

Nicole looked confused. “Tomorrow is Saturday.”

“I know, I was confused myself when they announced that it was on Saturday.”

“What’s Curriculum Day?” Nicole was overwhelmed by the number of activities freshmen were expected to do.

“Oh, it’s a day where your parents come in and see well how you’re doing in school. Who are you going to bring—” Tori cut herself off, just now realizing something. “Oh, right…Your parents aren’t around anymore…”

“No, that’s all right! I can see if Shay can come instead!” Nicole faked a laugh. Hopefully, she thought.

The rest of the day was just boring classes. Nicole was sitting on the stairs, waiting for her brother to pick her up. She looked at her watch; it had been an hour. Where are you? she thought, letting out a sigh. Nicole started drifting into some random thoughts until she heard tires screech. She looked up and saw Shay’s old navy blue Toyota pull into the parking lot.

“About time, Shay.” Nicole stood up and walked towards the car. “What took you so long?”

“Sorry, sorry! I took a nap and lost track of time.”

Nicole rolled her eyes and got in the car. They drove off back to the house. It was just now that she thought of Curriculum Day when they walked through the front door into the kitchen.

“Hey, Shay?”

“What’s up?”

“Are you busy tomorrow?”

“Sadly, yes. I promised that I’d help Chris build a new bookshelf.”

“Oh…I see. Okay, then.” Nicole sighed, then walked up to her room, not saying another word.

Shay wanted to go after her but didn’t have the energy to do it. Instead, he stayed put. He wondered why his sister acted differently than earlier this morning.

Nicole entered her room, throwing her bag onto the floor, then threw herself into the bed. She buried her face in the pillow. “Why can’t I just ignore school spirit day tomorrow?” she choked out, on the brink of sobbing. She looked over, seeing a picture of her parents on the nightstand. Their parents died from a car crash. And that was about three weeks ago. She reached out to grab it and started to cry, but she wiped her eyes. “Mom…Dad…Goodnight.” That was the last thing she said before she drifted into sleep.

The next morning, Nicole knew it was Curriculum Day, but she didn’t bother to get up and get ready, knowing that her parents weren’t around and her brother had plans. She opened her eyes, noticing a note on her nightstand. She picked it up.

“I’ve headed over to Chris’s place to help him build the bookshelf. I won’t be long. —Shay.”

Nicole set the note back down on the nightstand before turning onto her back. She sighed before shutting her eyes again, quickly going back to sleep.

Meanwhile, with Shay and Chris, they were putting the finishing touches on the bookshelf. After they were done, they both sunk to the floor, already feeling tired. Building a bookshelf does take some work.

“There. Finally done.” Chris wiped sweat from his forehead. “Thanks for helping.”

“No problem,” Shay chuckled. “I’m just helping out a friend. And besides, your sister will love her new bookshelf.”

“Speaking of Rio, did you hear that there’s a Curriculum Day going on? Rio brought Mother.”

Shay’s eyes widened. Is that why Nicole was asking him if he was busy tomorrow? How was he gonna make it up to her? He jumped to his feet and dashed out the house without saying a word. Chris just blinked, wondering what just happened.

“Oh, man, I really screwed up this time! Please forgive me, Nicole!”

Nicole was back at the house, sitting on the couch. She had the TV remote, flipping through random channels. She turned the TV off and threw the remote at the chair across from her. She rested her head on the back of the couch. “Today is boring…” She closed her eyes and planned on taking a small nap.

“Nicole!” Shay’s voice broke the silence.

“You’re back? That was fas—”

Shay cut her off. “Why didn’t you tell me that Curriculum Day was today?!”

“Oh. You know about that, huh? Well, it’s just that you had plans, and I didn’t want to interfere, so…”

“Nicole.” Shay sat next to Nicole on the couch and hugged her. “You could’ve told me…I could’ve waited until later to build that bookshelf with Chris. I’m your older brother, Nicole. If something happens, I’m here if you need someone to talk to.”

Nicole was taken aback by this. It had been a while since the two siblings hugged like this. It felt weird, to be honest. She hesitated but hugged her brother back. It was really nice that she had a brother like Shay.

“I’m sorry, Shay.”

“No, I should be the one that’s sorry. And I promise that I will make it up to you.” Shay stood up.

“And how are you going to do that?”

“School spirit day, duh.” Shay hit the back of Nicole’s head lightly. “Now, let’s get a move on, sis.”

“All right.” Nicole nodded and stood up.

“Oh, Nicole?”

“Yeah?”

“I love you.”

“I love you, too.”

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