Speaking Without Words - Ch. 1
Speaking Without Words - Ch. 1 stories
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mreadings
mreadingsCommunity member
Autoplay OFF  •  a year ago
Artemis is not like normal kids. She'll share her story, if you're willing to listen.

Speaking Without Words - Ch. 1

After being subjected to the boring nonsense that could’ve been accomplished by kindergarteners, I was revving to leave class.

I heaved an internal sigh of my frustration when I saw a few strands of my jet black hair dangling in front of my face, just begging to be ripped out.

I took my hair out of the ponytail and shook my head, sneezing as my feathery chin-length hair tickled my nose.

I fidgeted in my seat, waiting for what seemed like an eternity for study hall to begin.

Normally the bell just meant another thirty minutes of useless work but today I was able to escape to the band room.

My teacher wanted me to try out some of the new instruments that she recently purchased and I happily obliged.

As my math teacher handed me my hall pass, I picked up my sketchbook and practically ran out of the classroom.

As I walked to the band room, I became surrounded by ne- I mean my people.

The trombonist was complaining about her homework, the flutist was gushing about his boyfriend, and the saxophonist was complaining about their pitch.

Not to be rude but it was their choice to choose alto.

I smiled as I entered the band room with my discombobulated family. The band teacher, Ms. Hall, called me over.

“Good morning again!” she sang, her cheerful character matching her bright blonde hair.

Good morning. I signed back.

“Now, the instruments that just came in haven’t even been opened yet but I need your keen eye and brain, as well as your skills, to test them out.”

I smiled giddily as she gave me the key to the practice room.

I went in and shut the door. I looked around the room and was instantly in heaven.

Two cellos, one soprano, a contrabassoon!?!?! There were also a few French horns, clarinets, and flutes. I started from smallest to biggest.

I inspected and went over every inch meticulously. Every pad was checked, every spring tightened or loosened, every bar put in place.

But when I got to the cellos. Oh man, did I pray for time to stop. I opened the case and it was if the cello was singing the song it wanted me to play. And what can I say? I obliged.

My fingers fell on the board in quick succession. My right hand, loosely gripping the bow, was already moving across the strings.

The bell rang way too soon. Ms. Hall had to leave for a meeting so I went to go eat lunch at the media center. It was probably for the better. My fingers were raw and red.

As I headed out, I plugged in my earbuds, hit play on my phone, and let myself be swallowed by the lyrics that cascaded from my playlists.

I passed all the booths from the local colleges and headed towards the library. I sniffed at the ASL booth and a few girls wearing ridiculous looking and ridiculously expensive designer clothes.

They giggled as they tried to spell out their names. ASL for a language is a joke. I learned it in two months.

I don’t like lunch or school. First of all, it’s boring and second, it means that there are people that try to make conversations. It also means that I have to mingle.

After people found out that I didn't speak, they treated me as if I was dumb and unintelligent.

It's really offending to be treated as something less than human when in reality, listening has made me smarter. I scowled at a group of kids who were complaining about their lives.

They knew nothing.

I entered the library I signed hello to our awesome librarian, Mrs. Levi. She signed back, scolding me for not being quiet. Mrs.

Levi is always kind and always knows when I need to be called out of a class. She calls it her "Artemis sense".

Have a good day?

Yup. I signed, I got to test the new instruments.

And were they acceptable?

Mediocre. The flutes needed a few adjustments and so did the others. Except for the cellos. God, were they beautiful!

That’s good. Don't forget to return the books you have checked out.

Yes, mistress. What about you? How was your day?

Busy, busy, busy!

I signed goodbye and left to go sit in my usual nook in the corner. As I headed that way, I bumped into an annoying pest called Austin.

I put my fingers under my chin and quickly thrust them out, the sign for bitch. Mrs. Levi started cackling.

I walked past him and, to my extreme (not) luck, into Collin, who just so happened to be entering the library.

And as such, caused me to drop my sketchbook that oh so lovingly landed with a page of boys face up.

Great. Just...great.

Before I could react he bent down and picked up the sketchbook I had dropped and handed it back to me.

"What's your favorite medium?" he asked, giving me a friendly smile and my book.

I glanced at Mrs. Levi, back at him and signed to Mrs. Levi "oil paint." She told him and I nodded.

"That's pretty chill," he said. "I'm not very good, could you teach me?"

I quickly signed 'no' to Mrs. Levi, and she grinned. "She said she'll think about it." I threw her a glare and stomped my foot. She gave me a wink.

"You choose the place and time and I'll meet you there." He caught my arm and I flinched. He looked up at me but didn't say anything. I sighed in relief. He wrote his number on my forearm.

"Text me sometime?"

I nodded again as he walked out. I turned to Mrs.

Levi and started frantically signing to her about communicating, proper translation, nervousness, boys, food, supplies, and all the reasons I couldn't and shouldn't do it.

"Well, sweetie, that's your problem now," I swear, god as my witness, that she smiles and started humming.

I stormed over to my corner, looking at Collin's number on my arm. How the hell was I supposed to teach someone when I won't talk?

Austin started to walk over. I was so not going to deal with him today.

Austin was a rude jerk with an inflated ego and overused balls. In other words, a jock.

The annoying prat was either wanting to tease me or get me to do his work for him. And deciding I'd take my chances outside, I turned around, held up the finger to him, and walked out.

I spent the rest of my lunch under a tree.

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