Acceptance

By Brooke Houghton

It was the best month of the year, Pride Month or June, and my friends and I wanted to show the school our pride. We brought our rainbow flags, painted our faces with our different pride colors in a slash, and headed off to our school, Eastwood Middle School. One of my best friends, Scarlet, was walking with me into the gate while talking. Scarlet was tall, had brown hair, tan skin, and pretty brown eyes. I opened my backpack and showed her the hundreds of pride flags I had in it.

 “Omg Brooke, I can’t believe you bought all of those flags! Where did you even get them?” Scarlet yelled excitedly.
“I got them where I got all my pride clothes and flags, from my mom!” I said.

We laughed as we entered the gates. Then we heard, “Hey guys! You are early today!”
We turned around to see our friend Kameron with a pride flag wrapped around their neck. 

Kameron has green hair, dark brown skin, dark brown eyes, is Non-binary, and is very small. 

Kameron attacked us with a hug as we walked onto the patio.

 “Omg, you guys look so cute said, finally letting us go.

Before we could say anything else we heard someone yell, “Ew! You guys are gay? That is disgusting!” Kameron and Scarlet both turned to look at who had said that. I grabbed their arms to hold them back and said, “Guys it is okay. Just breathe. Ok?”

But what I didn’t know was that one of our friends named Alexa was behind us and said, “Shut up! Just because we have different genders and love different people doesn’t mean we are any different from you!”

Alexa was small, had light brown hair with purple tips, pretty light brown eyes, white skin, and was Non-binary. Although Alexa was small, Alexa was very strong and wasn’t afraid to fight. As soon as I saw Alexa, I let go of both Kameron and Scarlet and rushed over to stop Alexa before she could do anything bad. 

As I turned and grabbed Alexa I saw the boy who had just spoken. It was Kylo, a big bully at our school who always talked about how LGBTQ+ was stupid. Kylo was husky, small, had light brown skin, dark brown eyes, a mole on the right side of his face, and a bowl cut.

“No, come on, let her go, she won’t do anything!” Kylo said with a smirk on his face. “Look at her, so small and weak!”
Alexa kept trying to push past me but I grabbed them by their waist and pulled them toward me.

Hugging Alexa as tight as I could I tried to calm them down by saying things like, “Hey, hey, calm down. It is going to be alright. Ok? Just hug it out, it is going to be ok.”

“What is wrong with gays? Scarlet asked. “Gays are amazing! Just because we love differently doesn’t mean we’re bad!”
“Oh shut up!” Kameron said to Kylo in defense of Alexa and Scarlet. “You are just mad because we can get more dates than you,” them said.
Kylo then joined in and yelled back. “Are you serious? Gays are the worst things to ever happen! Being gay is disgusting!”

Even though I was angry, I kept my calm and kept hugging Alexa; trying to get them to calm down. But after a while, some bystanders started to get involved in our argument and it got harder and harder to stay calm with all the people yelling. It was suddenly too hard to stop the argument so I gave up trying to be nice and started screaming also. 

Bystanders started to push each other and that is when the security officers came and started to pull people apart. The security officers calmed mostly everybody down except Scarlet, Kameron, Alexa, Kylo, and I. After being pulled away from each other the security officers took us to the principal’s office for starting the argument. 

The Principal, Mrs. Johnson, was a very strict woman. She had straight black hair, light brown skin, dark brown eyes, and was wearing a tan suit with tan high heels. Although I was still angry, I looked at my friends with pleading eyes to make them understand that this was serious and we needed to talk this out or we wouldn’t win. 

“Do you guys want to explain to me why you were fighting?” Mrs. Johnson asked. 

All of us began talking at once giving the reason why we started arguing. “One at a time, please,” she said.

After she said that all my friends looked at me to explain what happened, but Kylo beat me to it. “They were wearing their stupid flags and I didn’t like it! I mean who wants to see that you’re gay? That is a sin! So I told them to take it off, but they didn’t, so I got angry and they pushed me, so I pushed them back and it got out of hand,” he said as I looked at him in shock. 

He had lied to the principal and she looked like she agreed that what he did was right. “If I may,” I began in the calmest voice I could manage, “I’m sorry, but that isn’t how I remember it.”

My friends looked like they wanted to beat Kylo up so bad. I just put a hand on Scarlet and Alexa’s knee because they were right next to me and I wanted them to calm down. I also looked at all three of them to tell them that I was going to get this straightened out. 

“Yes, please I want to hear from both sides,” said Mrs. Johnson. She was trying her best to be patient with all of us.
“Ok well, Scarlet, Alexa, and I were walking into school with our pride flags, and Kylo yelled ‘Ew! You guys are gay? That is disgusting!’ Then I…-” 

Kylo rudely interrupted me, “You’re lying. I never said that! You’re a liar!” He stood up while yelling, pointed at me, looking like he was about to start crying. 

Alexa then stood up and yelled at Kylo. “That is exactly what you said you little-,” the security officers came in to calm us down after hearing the yelling. I grabbed on to Alexa again and pulled them to one of the far counters in the room to calm them down. 

“That is it. Mrs. Johnson said as she stood up. “I’m going to have to call your parents Alexa.” 

Alexa froze when they heard Mrs. Johnson say she would call their parents.They knew their parents wouldn’t be happy that they were getting in trouble. 

“No! Miss, please don’t call their parents, call mine, please!” I begged knowing I would get in trouble with my parents too, but I just didn’t care. 

“Hmph, fine your parents it is,” Mrs. Johnson said as she turned to get her phone. 

All of us were then taken out of the room and put outside to sit and wait. I sat there with my head down waiting for my parents to come and yell at me for what I had done. 

“Hey, it is ok,’” said Scarlet, rubbing my back to try to make me feel better, I turned and put a small smile on my face even though I felt like crying. 

I knew what I did was right, but I also knew what my parents were going to say, so I just laughed a little and said, “I know.” I love my friends and would never want them to get in trouble even if it meant I would get the blame. 

I soon felt someone laying their head on my shoulder. I turned to see Alexa hugging and putting their head on my shoulder. Then they said, “Thank you,” in a voice almost like a whisper. 

Kameron got out some rainbow cookies that they had in their hoodie pocket and said, ”Here,” passing me a cookie with a smile on their face. 

I smiled back, not caring what my parents were going to say anymore because my friends would be there to help me through it. But just at that moment, my mom and dad came bursting through the door. My mom has black curly hair, is a tall Africain American with dark brown eyes and she was wearing a pride shirt just like me. My dad, who is a little taller than my mom was there with a rainbow hat over his grayish-brown hair. He has white skin and brown and blueish eyes.

They looked at me in anger then my mom asked, “What did you do?” in a scary voice. 

I responded. “Some guy was calling gays disgusting, so we started arguing and it got out of hand. I was trying to be as brave as I could as I explained the situation to my parents. 

Saying that made them both much angrier. They both looked at each other and nodded. Then my mom turned and slammed her hand on the counter. She asked in a stern voice, “Where is the principal?”

This made me terrified and confused at the same time. I thought they were going to yell at me. Why would they want the principal? 

My dad walked over to me and hugged me while saying, “Don’t worry. Mom and I will take care of this. Then we will take you and your friends to a pride parade.”

I smiled and hugged him back. I was very happy that I wasn’t in trouble. As they walked into the principal’s office, I looked at my friends. I said, “I guess I’m not in trouble.” We all laughed. 

Happily, my friends took out their phones and texted their parents asking if they could go to the pride parade. Then we flinched as we heard my mom screaming at Blake and the Principal. We then slightly giggled at the thought of what my parents were doing. 

After about 6 minutes my mom was no longer screaming about bullying and her voice was calm as she continued to discuss the matter with the principal. My friends and I began talking about how excited we were to be going to a pride parade. They texted their parents to ask if they could go to the parade.

Soon all of the parents had replied and said that we could take them to the pride parade. My parents walked out of the office with proud looks on their faces. y dad spoke first saying, “That Principal won’t be bothering you about having pride, anymore. I think that your Mom scared her half to death.” We all laughed.

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