Sunday, May 13, 2012

A Friend in Need is a Friend Indeed

Jessica clutched her money in her hand. It seemed awfully easy to lose that way. I didn't say anything though. We headed into the lobby to buy our snacks. I didn't mention how my storage system was much better. Jess didn't even have boots.

At the vending machine of the pool facility, I reached into my boot. And... the ten dollars wasn't there. A feeling of dread washed over me.

"No no no no no no no no no no no," I gasped under my breath, "This isn't possible!"

Jessica just looked at me with a "What?" look on her face. Whatever else she said that moment, was lost from my memory in the urgency of the situation, everything but my immediate problem flying out of my thoughts and memories.

The next twenty-or-so minutes was a flurry of activity. Jessica and I retraced our steps. The money was nowhere to be found.

"It was the team in the blue!" she deduced, "They had to be the ones who stole your money." Jumping to conclusions was something that Jessica liked to do. (OK, maybe I do that sometimes too...)

"What am I going to do?" I wailed, "My parents are going to kill me!" By then, I was in complete panic. Ten whole dollars! My parents got angry when I lost a hair pin that cost less than a dollar ("You need to be more careful! These things don't grow on trees, you know!). They would flip if they found out about this.

I grabbed Jess by the shoulders. "You have to help me!" She obviously understood how suspicious and annoyed my parents would get if I told them I had spent ten whole dollars on bagels and fruit in only one day of the swim meet.

Jessie was just about the smallest sixth grader ever. She looked like she was about eight years old. It was actually kind of funny, that wise look on her face at the time. So... wise. Have you ever seen a teeny tiny little girl with that face? I would be laughing if I wasn't almost in tears at that moment. Silently, I cursed myself for being so careless.

Still bearing that "look", Jess produced a five dollar bill from her plastic baggie. "Pay me back," she grumbled. Was that annoyance in her face?

I literally snatched the money. Then I snatched up Jessica and probably crushed her in my hug. "Thankyouthankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou!!!" I quiet-screamed, "Ohmigawshiloveyoujessieyouaremybestfriendthankyouthankyouthankyou!"

When I got home that night, my parents did ask. And I lied, and I gave them Jess's money. I breathed a sigh of relief when they didn't give me any trouble. They were satisfied. I felt awful about it, I still do, being a frugal person myself.

Jessica had always been my most reliable friend. In terms of body mass, she's incredibly small. Maybe that's why I underestimate her sometimes. Which just goes to show, you never know who's going to save you from being grounded for a year.

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