PSYCHOLOGICAL WARFARE BY ANJA STAFFORD; SHORT STORY Tales from the Midlands and I'm Seen in Ages Wanted My in Their Stupid Attitudes from Her

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MY friend looked over at the group of girls who started laughing like hyenas on drugs. The girls sent her glances and sniggered. We could hear them mentioning our names and adding "like SOME people" in their sentences.

"Ignore them!" I hissed. But my friend shook her head, looking green. Her eyes glazed over and she blinked, taking deep breaths.

"Sir! May I go to the toilet for a sec?" my friend suddenly asked.

"Yes, be quick," our tutor said briskly, handing out papers to everyone, and my friend walked (more like wobbled) out the classroom.

I got up, too, and followed her.

Out in the corridor, I put my arm around my friend's shoulders, getting ready to support her increasingly unsteady movements.

Her hands were cold and clammy.

It's a good thing we made it to the toilets on time, because if not, then the cleaner would throw her uniform away rather than deal with what my friend is heaving in the toilet. I stood outside in the quiet corridor. I wanted to rush in there and make sure she was alright, but the scent of vomit made me reel back.

She walked out a few minutes later, looking as pale as death. She took a deep breath and said, "I know they're talking about us. I shouldn't act like this..."

"Just ignore them," I said soothingly, "and calm down, otherwise you'll get sick again."

"Yes, you're right, there's no point in telling anyone. We'd only make things worse and the tutors will probably ignore us... No, they're supposed to help us... What should we do?" my friend wailed, shaking, "I HATE those idiots in our class! But why us? What the hell have we DONE to get all the stupid comments off them?!" "They're just being stupid," I said, frowning.

My friend was on the brink of hysterics, all because of those girls in my class. They're first-years as well, so they shouldn't be bringing in their stupid attitudes from school into college.

"That's it then," my friend uttered, eyes staring at nothing. "It's all because I called that girl an airhead.

And now half the group is against me."

I rolled my eyes and sighed. The girl my friend called an airhead is this girl who just gossips about people behind their backs. The girl started this stupid habit of talking about us to her mates even if we're right there. I seriously wanted to kill her. My friend even apologised to the girl for calling her an airhead, and we thought it was all done and dusted.

We were wrong, wrong, wrong. I reached out to hold her hand, squeezing it lightly.

"Let's go back, they'll be wondering where we went," I mumbled softly. …