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Morgan sat with two of her friends in the sun on the steps, watching all the students pass by. It was the first day of school, a day she’d always hated. Everything was different: new teachers, new students, new schedules to get used to, and new people to get to know. It was so much work. She liked to be comfortable in her schedule, know everyone, and not have to worry about anything unexpected happening.

A girl walked by her; she was clearly new and didn’t know where she was going. She stood awkwardly by the main entrance, fiddling with her curly brown hair. It was obvious she had tried to look good for her first day, but her statement necklace and floral headband didn’t do enough to draw attention away from the worry on her face.

You should go talk to her.

Morgan shifted uncomfortably. She hated talking to new people. It was always so forced and awkward. She couldn’t handle the fake smiles and those questions that everyone asks to be polite. She stared at her worn black Vans and messed with the shoelaces. The girl would figure it out. Everyone always did.

Morgan remembered when she’d first gotten to high school. She’d always kind of been to herself and had a hard time making friends, so her first few weeks had been rough. She had been that girl who dreaded lunch, because it meant facing the humiliation of sitting alone or intruding on a group that she didn’t belong to.

But one day, a few weeks into classes, when Morgan was wandering through the lunch room, looking for an inconspicuous seat, someone waved at her. It was an older girl, sitting with a few others who chatted carelessly while they ate their pizza slices. Morgan looked around, making sure that the girl hadn’t been waving at anyone else. The girl smiled and asked her if she wanted to sit with them. Morgan sat down timidly and was soon drawn into the conversation. The girl, Taylor, was friendly, but not over the top, and she and Morgan had become fast friends.

Taylor had graduated since then, but she was still one of Morgan’s closest friends. Taylor had introduced her to the friends she had now and remained a big part of her life.

Morgan looked back up at the girl standing alone on the steps. She needed a Taylor. She needed someone to help her out.

She stood. “I’ll be back,” she told her friends and walked over to the girl.


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