This is my first Speak fic at all - I apologize for not giving an explination of the setting in-story, but I wrote this for a short story in class. Anyways, Melinda's 17, Hairwoman is...32, let's say, and they have forged a kind of secretive relationship. Anyway, enjoy.


I'm in MISS again.

I hate it. It's not that it has anything wrong with it, quite the opposite actually; there was nothing wrong with it. And nothing good about it. There was nothing. White walls, white desks, white everything.

I'm mad at Hairwoman. She isn't supposed to put me in MISS. She's supposed to be an ally. But I had skipped class, and we needed to keep appearances up. I groan, leaning my face onto the palms of my hand. I hate it here so much. I want Hairwoman to spring me free, like my knight in shining armor.

But no, she insists we sit here, doing nothing. I suggest we do something, but she mutters she has work to do. I suggest sex, but she says someone could come in at any moment. I even suggest I help her, but she scoffs and says, "No thanks. No one can read your handwriting."

That cuts deep. She sees the pout I put on and gives an apologetic grin. "Except for me…Sometimes. But the board will know someone was helping me when they see two different types of writing. I think it'd be best if you just sat here and-"

"Did nothing? Yeah, that's great. Thanks for the suggestion, Iris." She frowns, but nods to me. "It's your fault. You shouldn't have skipped." I can't argue with logic like that. But I can pout. She catches on and says, "Threaten to do whatever you want; you always cave." I blink and try not to remember my last little 'hold' on sex. Hairwoman's neighbors still look at me funny when they see me.

"There has to be some way out of here," I groan. "Hmm…Lemme think," she mumbles. Iris is silent for a moment. I can practically see the gears turning. She then shoots me a toothy grin, looking very pleased with herself. "We could put it to a vote," she suggests. I'm astonished. "No catches?" She shakes her head. "You are an American woman. You have a voice. So use it."

She stands up, suddenly serious. "This vote is to determine the fate of Melinda Sordino, and whether or not she should be kept in this Suspension. All in favor of releasing her say, 'aye.'" I grin. I will get out of here. "Aye!" I shout, raising my arm. "And all opposed say 'nay'," she continued. Raising her arm slowly, she said, "Nay."

The smugness on her face confuses me. "Oh look, a stalemate. Suspension continues."

I'm stunned for a moment. I mull over this 'vote' for a moment, and then shout bluntly, "So the choice was no or no?" She thinks for a moment, and then gives me a sultry nod. I sink into my seat disappointedly. "You know, the American voting system is really flawed," I comment.

Hairwoman grins. "It's only corrupt until you win a case," she tittered. I don't say anything, but I know she's right. Blowing a strand of hair from my face, I began to wonder if I could blow up a hole in the wall huge enough to escape from.