Skip to main content

Starr Fall Teaser by Kim Briggs


 

Genre: Young Adult
Word Count: 71,000

 

 

Starr Fall

CHAPTER 1

For me, it’s about control. I control how many laps I swim, but I can’t control the speed of the swimmers on either side of me. I control how often I practice, but I can’t control if my competitors swim twenty or thirty more laps than I do each practice, and therefore have the power to beat me. That’s why I swam an extra twenty laps this morning, and that’s why I’m five minutes behind schedule and need to hurry to first period.

On my way up the stairs to Roger G. Webster High, I update my Friday To Do list.  
FRIDAY TO DO:       **LEADERSHIP EXAM SATURDAY @ 10:00**

  • 6:00 am to 7:30 am                Swim Practice ~Added 5 minutes
  • 7:30 am to 7:40 am                Shower and get ready for school~lost 5 minutes

  • 7:45 am to 9:15 am                Chemistry
  • 9:20 am to 10:50 am              AP American Lit
  • 10:55 am to 12:25 pm            AP Contemporary Issues
    • Debate Topic: Gay Marriage
  • 12:30 pm to 1:00 pm              Lunch
  • 1:05 to 2:35 pm          American History
  • 2:35-3:05 pm              SGA Meeting
    • Straighten out Sami/Laura Issue
  • 3:10-5:15 pm              Swim Practice: 200 laps and maybe some sprints ~If time, sneak in a quick run
  • 6:00 pm                       Meet Jody and Sami at Sami’s House
  • 6:30 pm                       Dinner with girls
  • 7-9:30 pm                   Mall: pick up #2 pencils
    • 10:00 pm                     Sleepover at Jody’s house
  • Saturday, 10:00 am    Leadership Exam
     

     Just as I reach for the door, the hair on the back of my neck stands up. I stop and look around. My eyes slide over to Christian Evergood, dark, moody, and dead sexy. He leans against one of the pillars with his black combat boot pushed up against it.

     My heart races at the thought that he was staring at me, but I dismiss the notion immediately. Christian Evergood doesn’t stare. Not at me anyway.

     Laughter explodes around me as dozens of students hang out in the halls before class. A pang of jealously runs through me. None of them had swim practice at 6:00 am. None of them have a locker all the way over in D-Wing. None of them have to hurry to first period Chemistry with Mr. Miller. I elbow and nudge my way through the crowded hallways.

Frank’s head towers over the sea of the students. I catch a glimpse of tight red ringlets standing in front of him, and I understand why he didn’t wait for me after practice. He set his sights on the new girl.

     He wraps a stray red curl around his finger and tugs on it gently. “I love hearing about your friends at your old school. You paint such a vivid picture. I wish I could visit.” 

Like a marionette doll, Red’s hand lands on his chest. Her strings pulled by Frank’s irresistible charm. “If only it wasn’t so far away,” she replies. Her hand lingers, as she leans in closer to him, their faces inches apart. “Maybe you could come over to my house after practice today? I’ll show you pictures.”

A blink. A nod. An easy kill for him.

“We can…,” his eyes jerk up to mine. He smiles when he sees me. “Hey Starr! Sorry, I missed you this morning. I got distracted.” He hooks my arm and starts walking down the hall.

     I tilt my head towards poor little Red staring after us. “Aren’t you going to say ‘goodbye?”

     “Oh yeah,” he says under his breath. He flashes his lady killer smile. “Later beautiful!”

Like a child on Christmas morning, her face lights up. She waves at him as if her life depended on it. “Bye Frankie!”

 I furrow my brow at him. “Frankie? Seriously?” 

He leans against a locker and shrugs. “It’s her pet name for me.”

I spin my combination into my lock again and again, but the stubborn thing refuses to accept it. A kick and a hammer fist delivered just above the locking mechanism opens it instead. “Pet name? Wasn’t yesterday her first day of school?”  

“What can I say? When you got it, you got it,” he says. “I’m considered quite a prince to every girl in this school but…” He zeroes in a finger on my nose.

I swat it away. “I know how charming you can be,” I reply, as I put a couple books in my bag, “but what happens if Taylor breaks up with Hurley or the new girl talks to Nicky in Biology?”

His lean 6’3” frame stiffens. “Do you think Nicky would say anything?”

I slam my locker shut and turn to face him. “I doubt it, but one of these days, you’re going to get caught.”

Relief washes over him. He steps closer to me. “Girls can’t resist me. I’ll just talk my way out of it or on second thought, if you went out with me, my dating days would come to an end,” he teases, closing the distance between us.

Most girls would love the attention Frank gives me. Most girls would grow red faced and faint if they heard half the come-ons he practices on me. Most girls haven’t been best friends with him since he was an obnoxious, hormone-ridden, scrawny eighth grader who wore ratty Sponge Bob t-shirts and couldn’t get a date to save his life.  

I shove him into class. “Get a grip.”

Just as I slide into my seat, the bell rings. I let out a sigh of relief. My day is back on schedule, and my discipline record remains blemish free.

TELL ME, WHAT DO YOU THINK?
Write on,
Kim

Popular posts from this blog

INTERVIEW with Juliana Spink Mills, Author of The Blade Hunt Chronicles

Dear Alison and friends,
Today, I am excited. I mean REALLY excited, because well, I got to hangout with my writer buddy Juliana Spink Mills via the modern way: email/twitter/IG/FB. Juliana and I met at the NYSCBWI conference a few years back and have been friends every since. Juliana has been a much better friend to me than I've been to her this past year, but my resolution for 2018 is to rid myself of some of the extra responsibilities (stay tuned for details) and focus on what's really important supporting my community and that includes my writing community and the most important components of my writing community other than my readers are my writer friends.


So Juliana, when did you start writing?
Although I’ve always liked messing around with words, I didn’t start writing ‘for real’ until I turned 40 and told myself to stop procrastinating.
Sounds like 40 was the kick in the ass you needed. I just gave myself a strict deadline to finish my current WIP by January 1st. Deadline…

THE GIRL WITH THE RED BALLOON: Review, Interview, and GIVEAWAY!

Dear Kim (and friends),


Today's post is a package within a package within a package.
I bring you a
book review,
interview,
and giveaway,
all wrapped into one post.


On the blog today we welcome Katherine Locke, author, cat wrangler, and YA book advocate. Recently Katherine and I connected on stage at the annual Fall Philly SCBWI Conference. We talked activism, writing, and I fanned all over her new book, The Girl with the Red Balloon.

Prior to Philly, I followed Katherine’s blog, reading her posts about character and writing, and her journey to publication. I also participated in monthly GAY YA (now YA PRIDE) book talks on Twitter where she sometimes moderated, and often participated, I also followed her on Twitter for her insights into this crazy *** world.  Then, just prior to her book's release YA Reads connected us via their 2017 Debut Author Bash so that we could host a giveaway of The Girl With the Red Balloon here. 

I mean, even for me, that's a lot of background, jus…

INTERVIEW WITH K.M. WALTON, YA FEST & HARRY POTTER

Dear Alison and readers, Have I got a surprise for you...Guess who stopped by to chat? Any guesses? No peeking at the title. Wait, I guess it's too late. Okay, I'll tell you anyway, KM Walton, the YA Author of all of these books...




Hi K.M.,

Thanks so much for stopping by to talk to me. Care for a chai latte or a glass of wine? It’s Friday. Let’s go for the wine.
Excellent choice. I’ll have one as well. So tell me, when did you become a writer? Despite my debut novel releasing when I was 44, my stacks of journals from childhood onward prove that I’ve always been a writer.
Yeah, it took me a while to figure out what I really wanted to be when I grew up. The bulging folder filled with scraps of paper and napkins of all my “book” ideas and “story” ideas didn’t make me realize my true calling until six or seven years ago. So tell me, what do you love about writing? Possibility. I’m a wildly anticipatory person, always have been. A dreamer for sure. Writing, with all of its glorious poss…