Maggie and Lucy knew it was an act, right from the start, the bravado. No matter how many comments Alex threw out about how ‘this isn’t necessary’ and 'I don’t even know why you’re bringing me here’.
An act they would see through even if they didn’t know that Alex took sponge baths, and couldn’t be in the bathroom alone when she took them. Even if they didn’t know how Alex froze if the sound of running water caught her by surprise. Even if they didn’t know about the nightmares.
An act they saw through because her voice was just too high, because her grip on their hands was turning her knuckles white. Because she had asked them to do this with her, for her, and seemed to be fighting every step.
At home, they sat in the bathroom whenever she asked, they warned her before turning on a faucet, they cuddled her between them, doing their best to wipe the tears away as soon as they formed.
Walking from the parking lot to the beach, they squeezed her hands as hard as she was theirs, they kept the conversation going, urging her forward, but making sure she knew she didn’t have to.
Making sure she knew that this was entirely her choice.
The sound of the ocean grew louder. Alex’s steps grew slower.
“This is stupid,” she mumbled, coming to a full stop, pulling her hands free and wrapping her arms around herself.
“No,” Lucy quickly said, stepping in front of Alex. "No. Nothing about this is stupid.“
"I’m a grown woman afraid of water.”
“And for a good reason,” Maggie said. "We can go, if you want.“
Alex looked to where the ocean was, still hidden behind a row of resorts and a raised board walk. She shook her head, then looked to the ground.
"I grew up on the ocean, I know it’s different than…”
Than tubs and showers and tanks designed to drown her.
She took a deep breath, then grabbed their hands again and started to walk. Her knuckles still turned white, but her steps were more sure than before.
They turned around one of the hotels, and the ocean spread out before them.
Alex stopped. Her muscles tense. She closed her eyes for a moment, the nodded.
Her steps were slow as they walked towards the sand, then stopped completely once they stepped into it.
“How do you feel?” Maggie softly asked.
Alex nodded, then shrugged.
“Do you want to go to the water?” Lucy asked.
Alex shook her head. "No. Can we just sit on the sand for a while?“
Okay, what if Charlotte is the evil mastermind and is the one blackmailing Iris, but neither Li nor Amber knows it? At the end of the episode Charlotte is discovered and her friends confront her asking why she didn’t tell them and let them help, and Charlotte rage out and snap at them saying they were too dumb and would probably ruin everything. Lowkey Candy inputs stating she ruined everything by herself and Amber and Li are like “wtf are you defending us?” Then their little group falls apart, and although Amber and Li will still be bitches, they’re now scared of going too far on bullying whoever they’d like bc of what happened to Charlotte…
Sometimes I think I should just change myself to fit in better at school and more people like me. Change my music taste, dumb myself down, even wear less black. But then I remember, there’s a reason certain colleges only accept an extreme minority of people.
I’m unique. I have my own music taste, clothes style, life goals and aspirations, and not to brag but I’m hella smart. I’m completely different from everybody else, when you look at the big picture. No other person of 7 billion will have the same clothes, music taste, life goals, interests, youtube subscriptions, talents, desires, IQ, and beliefs as me all at once. And that’s something special.
I’m enrolled in high school and college at the same time, I’m a near straight A student, and I’ve got plans to almost desperately apply to MIT. I’m a total nerd, I love computers and technology and math and science and I also love heavy metal and French pop and Disney music all the same, and I love wearing black clothes unless it’s hot in which case I’ll wear white, no matter how much my mom pushes me to wear the frilly girly shirts she got me at the start of the school year, and I love conspiracy theories and I love psychology and I love the color blue and green and pink and purple and I love vsauce videos and the whole entire science side of youtube and I love the stupid video games like muddy heights and I love seeing people’s reactions to them and I love the triple A games and indie games alike and I love perfume and I love baking. And there’s nobody else in the world exactly like me.
But if I change myself, throw that all away just to be able to talk to more people at parties, I might as well give up any dream of reaching MIT or even any smaller dream I’ve ever had. Because changing to suit other people’s needs and to fit in is just stupid. I’m smarter than that. And if anybody has cared enough about whatever rant this turned into to reach this point, you’re smarter than that too. What’s the point in changing who you are, giving up your uniqueness, to follow a crowd? Turn yourself into someone completely different just to have 30 friends as opposed to 3? I’ll take 3 friends over 30 any day as long as I’m happy and I’m true to myself. I’ll naturally attract others that are similar to me, and if I don’t, then so be it. I can work alone, I can work in a small pack, but I can’t work if I’m too busy worrying about what other people think of me.
I feel like I just gave a ted talk. Sorry if you got this far.