Her expression ranged from bewildered to content with confusion.
His hair was a low frequency wave till it got cut, maybe permed.
The punk was always throwing her chin my way, before apologizing, “Okay, okay!”
She always came in, sat at the desk nearest me which wasn’t assigned but she claimed it by being the first one in, and after unpacking for class, her pencil case and notebooks, she folded her hands, waiting, smiling my way and answering how she was with a proper and rote, “I’m fine, thank you, and you?” before she looked around in the silence and noticed the clock tick by slowly.
The sweaty mess came in late but too drenched from his failed sprint here to really be upset.
When I asked the new student how he was, he put in a lot of thought trying to answer it honestly. “Seven.” He was six.
Daily, his hair was styled for a yearbook photo in the 50s and his mom dressed him in polo shirts with the top button undone, folded over to the side with an ironed-in crease, and he was just the cutest little guy. Till he smiled. His front two teeth were missing. The ones on either side were rotting. He was used to people wincing so he didn’t smile much.
Her friend came in first to pump me up about the majesty I was about to see. Her mouth in an accepting smile of mature embarrassment pointed down, giving me a clear look at the scalp at the part of her new straw-colored hair, and I remember being horrified with my sister’s reaction the first time her strawberry tint went bad and she ended up looking like a squirt of food coloring. “He-Won! Are you going to be a K-pop star?” I asked, holding out a sign pen and notebook.
Naturally, she had a country look but it lightened up after she got to middle school and gave up sports and her friend taught her about makeup. She just didn’t know how to blend it into the neck.
His head had gone through a growth spurt, but his body was still waiting to shoot up.
He came up to me, excitedly showing off something new, but his new glasses were identical so I gave him a piece of candy, lest he leave disappointed.