Thursday, January 6, 2011

Sneaking Out

Shawna had been lying motionless on her bunk waiting for her chatty, giggling, teenaged roommates to fall asleep. She slipped into the clothes she had hidden under her mattress, knowing the leaders of the Christian youth camp would freak out if they saw her in this outfit: a tight-fitting turtleneck sweater and microskirt. Nor was it an outfit Shawna felt very comfortable wearing—at least not yet. Her mother had often said that a fully developed fourteen-year-old like Shawna was still too young to dress and act like an eighteen-year-old trying to attract boys. But Shawna's friend Destiny had told her what to bring to camp for this special night.

Destiny, another fourteen-year-old who could pass for almost twenty, was streetwise and experienced in things Shawna had little courage to try. Her weird resale-store clothes, flesh-piercing jewelry, hairstyle, and makeup had provoked not-too-subtle criticism in the youth group at church and at camp this week, but it didn't faze her, and Shawna loved the attention she received just from being around Destiny.

“Over here," Shawna whispered. Smiling, Destiny replied, "You're a wicked chick to sneak out of camp." Shawna appreciated the compliment. Destiny's opinion of her mattered a lot. Charged with courage, Shawna asked, "Do you have some weed?" Shawna had never smoked marijuana and hadn't planned on trying it tonight. But it seemed cool to ask Destiny about it anyway.

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