Over the dull hum of murmurs I heard my name called, “April.”
Frowning, I turned in my seat. “What?”
Sitting in the back row Jack, with his barely contained grin, snickered. He looked to his neighbour and exclaimed, “No, no I meant its July.”
I rolled my eyes. Even though this was advanced English, no one could mistake the students as smart; the class cackled.
I turned back around and focused once again on the set work.
There was silence.
I ignored him.
It was getting on my nerves. Why couldn’t my parents have given me a simple name like the rest of my peers had? Emily, Sam, something boring?
“April,” Jack tried again.
“April,” others added their voices. Soon they were chanting my name. “April, April, April.”
I gritted my teeth.
In a couple of months time we would be finished with high school for forever, some in that very room would go onto university and all would have some serious responsibilities in life; mortgages, raising kids, voting for a Prime Minister. So how could they be that stupid?
I could feel my ears burning along with my face. Calm down, I thought. When you take over the world you can make them all suffer.
That voice shocked me. I glanced at my neighbour Lee. Shyly he smiled, enjoying being part of the group activity for once.
“Really?” I asked in disbelief.
He shrugged, ducked his head and thankfully shut up.
So even the geek I sat next to wanted to be like everyone else.
They’re not going to shut up, are they? Sigh. Just give them their laugh. Small things entertain small minds. Anyway, they’re giving me a headache, I thought.
“April, April, April.”
I turned around in my seat, carefully schooling my face so I looked bored instead of irritated.
The same as last time, Jack looked to his neighbour and completed the joke. I turned away. They all laughed, Lee included.
A dull hum of murmurs returned.
Five minutes later our teacher re-entered the room and sat at his desk at the front of the class. Everyone fell silent.
I looked up at the teacher. There was a giggle behind me.
The teacher held out a piece of paper. “Well done on your short story. It was good. I hope to see you use it in the exam, you could get full marks for it.”
As I walked to his desk, I felt the uncontrollable tug on the corners of my lips. I grinned in front of everyone and they stared at me puzzled.