The Girl Looking Back In The Mirror
This Is The Story of Amani (Hari) Deen.She's now left the comfort of her old school,with it she leaves behind her old friends and old life.Adapting to her new life she changes,thinking she's left it all behind.But the past is sure to catch up with her,especially if the girl she can't face in the mirror has anything to do with it.
Theme Song: No Regrets by Dappy
It was one of those small everyone-knows-everyone sorts of schools. You knew every student. The entire girls side section consisted of about one hundred girls. Whereas here, my entire year group probably tops it. So to me, that's HUGE compared to my class of sixteen students. Back there, the teachers all knew you on a personal level. Which was cool. It was way different here. I would be lucky if any of the teachers remembered my name, instead of 'the Girl in the Headscarf'.
I sighed. Sure, this school could offer me a whole lot more, but I couldn't help missing my old crappy small run-down school. With all its crazy insane retarded students. I know my last few weeks of year 11 weren't great (yes I'm referring to the betrayal of my so-called 'friends'), but it was familiar. In a way it was like my home.
I looked around me. I was in a mixed-gender class. Yep, this would come as a shocker to most of the girls in my deprived all-girls faith school, but for some reason it didn t faze me. There was a good racial mix, but I still felt a little out of my comfort zone, being one of the few hijabys in the class. Most of the other headscarf-wearing Muslim girls all liked to clump together and alienate themselves from the rest of the class. Something I never and still can't understand. It was just as hard for me as it is for them, suddenly being part of a minority. Hell it was a lot harder for me! I've never been to a state school before! Never been one of the few covering Muslims. Never been away from grotty old Risalah School. This was more new to me then it was to them. Unlike them, i tried to embrace my new surroundings.
My thoughts were disturbed by a piece of paper bouncing off my head and landing on my desk. I looked around trying to figure out which idiot threw it. No one showed any signs of guilt. I unscrunched the crumpled paper;
That's all it said. One little thing! I looked around again, annoyed at this point. Still couldn't spot the culprit. I studied the note, if it can even be called that. Whoever it was just used a ruler to write it. Yesh they must have been bored!
"Amani!" the girl to my left hissed.
I turned to face Leah, one of my good friends at Harris Sixth Form. She looked from me to the tiny piece of paper in my hand, raised her eyebrows and gave me a quizzical look. I passed her the paper. After taking a look she gave me a confused questioning stare, responded by an annoyed shrug and roll of the eyes from me. Leah just smiled.
From the first time I met Leah we hit it off. Most of the students were new to the Sixth Form, just as I was. Some had been there for secondary; others had attended other federation sites. I was just standing there, looking for a familiar or friendly face. Well you can imagine how people avoided me. First day and I already felt out of place. All the Muslim girls had grouped together. Me, being the plonker I am, just stood there. Yep, the Asian Muslim girl in her headscarf and uniform, just standing there.
"Pretty daunting ain't it? I feel SO short!" This came from a voice near me. I turned to face the girl who had spoken.
"Yeah! Regretting not wearing any heels!" I responded to a pretty brunette girl. She flashed me a smile that I'm sure made all the boys go crazy.
"I'm Leah." She introduced herself.
"Amani." I smiled following suit.
"Hey, um if you don't mind me asking...why ain't you hanging with the other scarfys?" she seemed pretty embarrassed by just asking.
"I rather not be one of the crowd you know?" I replied. Remembering how badly that went the last time I tried fitting in with my fellow 'scarfys'.
"Well then Amani, I think you and I would make perfect friends." She gave me a knowing mischievous grin.
So that's what we became. Good friends.
Soon other people joined us. We had made our own group. They got to know me for me, not just a stereotype for my religion. So I guess both Leah and I benefitted from each others company.
The bell rang, interrupting my memories of that first few months. My thoughts seemed to be getting disrupted a lot don't they?
I collected my things and made my way out of the class, Leah at me side in seconds.
"What was that note all about?" she asked.
"God knows. Probably just some bored idiot." I shrugged.
"In THAT class are you surprised?" she sniggered. She began mimicking Mr Andrews, our Critical Thinking teacher. This obviously set us both off into laughter as we joined the table where the rest of our friends were sitting. Chatting away as expected.
"Mrs Stuart is such a bore..."
"Ah man I can't believe you're on lock AGAIN!"
"Low me your Dunks..."
Leah and I slumped down on the hard wooden benches joining the rest.
"Ah look at our girls with their little critical thinking faces!" Cooed Diana, a stunning black girl. One of our close friends who we regularly hung out with.
"Don't even start Di!" groaned Leah, resting her head on the table.
"I so wouldn't do that babes. Your gonna get wood markings all over your pretty little face." Advised Melody, another good friend.
Melody was checking her make-up in her compact mirror. Once she had checked every inch of her made-up face and made sure every strand of her auburn hair was in place, she snapped it shut.
"Lemme have a look Mel." I requested, hand outstretched as she placed the compact mirror in my palm.
"Urgh! I swear I feel like my scarf is slipping off!" I complained.
"It looks fine darling! You look as amazing as you always do. " Melody reassured me, whilst casually brushing back her long hair.
"Donâ€™t worry Amani. Not a hair showing, and your scarf is neat and in place." Diana smiled.
"I swear you're so lucky that no one can see your bad hair days!" Leah complained.
"Le your hairs always perfect! I don't have bad hair days, I have bad scarf days!" I grinned.
We all burst out laughing.
"Oi! What hair Amani? I swear you wear that thing on your head coz your bald?" Asked Caleb, faking innocence. This got all the guys on the table laughing.
"Caleb, ignorance is SO not bliss. You really need a R.E Lesson." Snapped Leah.
"Leah, that's a bit too advanced for them. They need brain cells first." Added Diana, mimicking Caleb's innocent face.
"But don't they need a brain to have brain cells?" asked Melody, really playing the bimbo.
The four of us burst into laughter. Times like these really made me have much love for my girls. They always made sure they had my back, even if it was a stupid little joke like Caleb's.
"Seriously?" I finally laughed, shaking my head.
"We do apologise ladies. It was a lame ignorant joke. Sincerely." Jake apologised, hand on his heart. This had us all laughing, whilst he stood there solemnly, acting oblivious.
The awkwardness evaporated and the normal banter continued.
"Amani, you do realise that Ayyub's been staring at you all this time?" Diana asked.
"He's coming this way!" Melody pointed out.
I turned around to look in the direction she was pointing. True to their word, he was walking our way looking right at me.
The thing is, I never payed attention to guys. Especially the Muslim Asian boys that came to this place. They were all either neeks or wannabe gangsters. Ayyub was defiantly the wannabe gangster type. Thinking he had swagger, bopping his way other.
"Yo Kutti." He gave his signature smirk. I just rolled my eyes.
"I have no idea what makes you think girls respond to that, but I defiantly don't." I responded sharply. "Is there a reason your here? Or are you just here to see how much you can annoy me?" I continued, looking him straight in the eyes.
"Well..." A mischievous smile spread across his face. "I was just wondering if you liked my note."
"That was you?" I asked, trying to hide my surprise.
"The one and only." He grinned. His face was in an uncomfortable distance to mine.
"Should have guessed that such a stupid note would come from such a stupid person." I forced a smile, gathered my things, stood up and pushed my way past him. Leaving him to stare in shock.
Just on cue my friends followed suit. Wow! That's what it must be like in one of them American Movies. I felt a satisfied smile spread across my face. Which was soon wiped off my face by the conversation Leah started;
"Oooh! Looks like someone has a crush on you!" she sung whilst the other two giggled.
"No. I don't think so." I calmly responded. Pulling a 'I'm-going-to-be-sick' face.
"Why not?!" asked Melody, her eyes wide.
"He's just...him." I scrunched my nose up.
"Oh My GOD! Amani! Come ON!" Diana exclaimed, nudging me as we sat in the quad.
"Okay Amani, you're being a little out of order! Your making out he's some disgusting thing! Half the girls we know drool over him! Both of you kinda suit you know..." Leah trailed off.
At this point I just burst out laughing.
"So how do we 'suit' then Le?" I laughed.
She had on that face of hers. The one that showed she was really thinking long and hard about something.
"Well. You're both Asian. You're pretty...well gorgeous actually. He's not that bad; if he was my type I think I'd have a try at him." Leah broke into a huge grin and winked, whilst we all laughed and ooh'd. She continued.
"You both got some chemistry. Your banter shows you can work." She winked.
"And your both Muslim so what's the problem?" Inquired Melody.
I just shrugged, trying to show disinterest so they'd drop the subject.
"He's baitly into you! Why not give it a go?" suggested Diana.
"Yeah!""Why not?!" the other two chimed in.
"Just." I shrugged.
What I really meant was: NO!
I know guys like him. The typical Asian Muslim boy stereotype; smooth, good-looking and a player. Guys like that never gave me a second glance before...before I changed. Before I dropped the weight and geekiness. When I began to shine. When I stopped recognizing the girl in the mirror. Now I had way to many guys like that lining up and trying it on. Don't get me wrong, I was flattered and still am. It's just after how people treated me before turned into this 'stunning' girl, I got a lot of hassle. Okay, I know your thinking how this could be fair on guys like Ayyub if they didn't even know me back then, but I'm just careful. Very.
Sure, Ayyub was defiantly on my list of potential boyfriends, if I ever wanted one. Just...there was always HIM. The guy whose name I write over and over again in the back of my notebook. Then I blush, get mad and tear the page to shreds. My messy handwriting could never write his name right...
Ha! I guess I can't be THAT pretty if the guys I like never notice me. Every guy that I've liked has never really liked me back. But they were little crushes compared to him. They were distraction to try and get me to stop liking HIM. But it still hurt every time.
God, all this unwanted attention always seemed to land me in trouble. Jealous girls back at secondary. Fights with my then best mates. The works. My looks changed, my personality changed. I changed. But was it for him? Was it for Ay-
"Hello! Earth to Amani!" Melody called, snapping her fingers in front of my face.
Blinking, I snapped back into the conversation.
"Sorry!" I apologised feebly.
"Honestly girl! You just zoned out on us!" exclaimed Diana.
"So what was that all about?" asked Leah, eyebrow raised.
"Nothing! Nothing." I replied. Trying not to let anything show.
It was bad enough that probably most of Al-Risalah(my old school) knew about my major crush and other crushs. Especially after my fight with my then best mate Arshiya in the local library...
I shuddered. All of my life back then just kept spiralling in and out of control. I looked at Leah who was eyeing me suspiciously. I smiled. Her eyes narrowed like she was going to push the topic further...but she just shrugged and smiled. Phew.
All of this was just in a matter of moments, too quick for the other two to catch on. At that point I knew she knew. She knew that there was more to me then I let on.
The past was the past. The Risalah girl and her story didn't exist. It was a new place for the new real Amani to show. The old had to keep her distance...keep away from my new world. But she kept staring back at me in the mirror.
"My GOD Zayn Malik is so FINE!" I sighed.
The others cracked up laughing. Normality resumed.