Esmeralda stepped onto the campus of her new school. She had moved across the country from New York to Los Angeles. But even there, she had a hard time making friends. Guys were always attracted to her, but she loved to turn them down. She was very close to her parents, but over the summer they died in a car crash. So she was sent to live with her uncle in California, who was an alcoholic and couldn't care less about her. Esmeralda was 16 and starting her junior year. She was full-figured, with jet-black hair, fiery eyes, and tan skin, wearing bright colored skirts and other bohemian styles.

When she slammed her locker, there was a guy with folded arms leaning against the lockers, staring at her. Esmeralda stared back. "Who are you?" she asked somewhat intimidately, "What do you want?"

"The name's Colin," the boy said. "And you are?"

"Esmeralda. That's a beautiful name for a beautiful lady." He grabbed her hand and bent down about to kiss it, but Esmeralda pulled it away.

"I'm sorry. I have no interest in you," she said coldly.

"Who ever said I had any interest in you? I was just trying to be polite. Damn, woman." Esmeralda walked away. "You're new here, aren't you?" Esmeralda stopped and turned around.

"What's it to you?" she asked.

"I know practically everybody at this school. With the exception of all the freshmen, they being new and all. But we've never met. You don't know anybody here yet, do you?"


"Well now you do."

"What is it you want?"

"I'm just trying to be a friend. What? You've never had any friends before or anything?"

Esmeralda stopped. "No," she said quietly, "I haven't."

"Well now you do." He put his arm around her. For the first time since she's left New York, Esmeralda smiled. She got a good look at Colin. He was tall and skinny with long dark hair and eyes. They started walking together. "So what's your schedule like?"

She took out her schedule. "Let me seeā€¦ for my first class I have Frollo for physics in room 208 of the Hugo building."

"Me too. Come with me, it's right up these stairs here."

"So do you anything about this Frollo person?"

"No, he's new. I asked a bunch of the seniors who took physics last year."

Colin and Esmeralda stepped into their classroom. Standing there in the front of the room was a man. He was tall, pale, and old looking, with graying and balding dark hair and piercing eyes. Once the bell rang and everyone had taken their seats, he put on a fake smile. "Good morning class." His voice was deep and cold. "I hope you all had a great summer," he said with no interest whatsoever. He started his role call. "Esmeralda Anameris?"

"Here," she said. When Mr. Frollo looked up from his list, there was a long, awkward pause. It was only a few seconds, but felt like longer. He stared into Esmeralda's eyes. It was a painful stare though, as if he had seen a ghost.

"Well," he said looking back at his list, pretending nothing happened, even though it was completely obvious there was something on his mind. He continued the role call and lectured the rest of class. But Esmeralda didn't listen to a word he said. She was busy staring at the guy sitting next to her. He was so hot and muscular, with short brown hair and an aftershave. And she noticed that he was staring back at her. For the first time in her life, she was attracted to someone. When class ended they approached each other. But before either one could say a word, Collin called her name out. "Esmeralda," the guy said smiling, "I'll remember that." And he walked away.