Common Ground


Chelsea Gibson and Rochelle Morgan never met until October 21st, 2012. Their meeting was all by chance because their lives, to this point, ran counter to one another. One had first period history while the other had algebra. One was fitted for braces at ten-thirty the other had the eleven-fifteen appointment. Their lives had been laid out as if fate kept them apart. And likely it would have gone on that way until something happened the night of October 20th, 2012.

Neither could sleep.

The next day they went to school with one eye closed and no eye shadow. They drug themselves through every class. Shortly after lunch neither were able to stay awake. Chelsea was sent to office for sleeping in study hall and Rochelle for falling asleep in Spanish.

There they sat together for the first time in their lives in spite of the fact they lived two blocks from each other and attended the same school since kindergarten.

“Who are you?” Chelsea said.

“Who are you?” Rochelle said.

“I asked first,” Chelsea said.

“It’s Rochelle,” Rochelle said. “Now what’s yours?”

“Well it’s not Rochelle,” Chelsea said. “But if you must know, it’s Chelsea.”

“Everybody has that name,” Rochelle said. “I’m the only Rochelle in school.”

“I hate Rochelle,” Chelsea said.

“I hate Chelsea,” Rochelle said.

“I hate your hair,” Chelsea said.

“Your hair was popular…” Rochelle said. “Come to think of it, it was never popular.”

“Where’d you buy your cloths, at K-Mart?” Chelsea said.

“You’re wearing the cloths I wore last year,” Rochelle said. “You find them on the curb in front of my house?”

“Is that your perfume or is your dad an auto mechanic?” Chelsea said.

“I think somebody left the door to the boys bathroom open,” Rochelle said.

Both girls eyes started to drift shut.

The school principal appeared in the doorway of his office. “Let’s see,” he said. “It seems like we have two young ladies who can’t go to sleep at night, a couple of night owls.”

“I’ve never been a morning person,” Rochelle offered as an excuse.

“Me neither,” Chelsea said.

Chelsea and Rochelle looked at each other and said, “Wow!”

“BFF,” Rochelle said.


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