Wren doesn't think of herself as an extraordinary girl, but she soon finds that she can have some extraordinary dreams, and with a very special person. Set during Revenge-era.
Chapter 1: Hell
I am going to die. There's no doubt about it. I will hyperventilate, faint, and crack my head off the squeaky clean linoleum floors of Mr. Hughes' classroom. My books will go to my family, my artwork will probably stay in the attic until some distant relative in the future gets curious and decides to look at them.
Those were the thoughts my mind threw at me as I prepared to do my presentation.
Literal tufts of confetti were shooting out of my ears at the prospect of speaking in front of a class. Not.
My hands were clammy and clutching the sides of my desk truthfully. The person before me was ending his presentation. Josh was his name and his voice projected itself confidently from the front of the room to the back. Why couldn't I be like that?
Josh finished and earned the applause of the class and an approving nod from Mr. Hughes. My heart dropped.
Mr. Hughes looked over at me. "Wren, are you ready to give your presentation?"
Not trusting myself to be able to speak without stuttering, I gave a quick nod and stood up. 'Put your right foot in front, then the left.' My brain told my legs to walk as I made my way to the front of the room. I got up to the podium and turned around, ready to be looked at by twenty-three of my peers. One of them was my best friend, Beth, who was looking at me with worried eyes. Apparently my nerves were showing on my face.
I took a deep breath before beginning. I had done my paper on the Opium Wars between Great Britain and China, staying up late last night to finish it. And now the words were reforming themselves look like foreign scriptures as I tried to read them.
"The First Opium War began in 1839 when. . ." I trailed off. My heart beat was beginning to pound in my chest and my hands, along with the rest of my body were shaking. With wide eyes, I looked over at Mr. Hughes, who was gesturing to me encouragingly. He was a fairly young teacher, probably used to be an athlete for our high school when he went here. He didn't understand how much the attention of my classmates unnerved me. Their stares were like having a thousand guns aimed at me, the hunters poised to shoot.
After a few moments of silence and trying to calm myself down, I gave up.
"I-I really can't do this." I finally got out, my voice small and trembling. Mr. Hughes got a pitying look on his face, "Are you sure? Just take a deep breath and start over if you need to."
I stared at him with wide eyes and shook my head, "No, I mean, I really can't do this!"
He sighed in a disappointed way, "You know this means a zero for class participation?" I nodded, anything to get me out of the current situation I was in. He nodded and motioned for me to go back to my seat, which I gladly did. From over to my left Beth was still looking worried.
'Are you okay', she mouthed. I gave the best smile I could produce at the moment and nodded weakly. She knew about my anxieties and knew I was having some problems. She gave a look of sympathy and returned the smile before looking back to the front of the class as the next person began speaking.
In a torrent of embarrassment and self pity, I put my head down on my desk for the rest of the period. So much for dying.