She sits in the four-seat group with her friends, all of them self-conscious... newly emerged from their chrysalis. It is the first week of uni. The grey backs of buildings flash past the window as they rummage in their stiff new portfolios or cool messenger bags. She is dressed with a carefully considered whimsy; leggings, a couple of oversize singlet tops, layered in different colours. An enormous fabric rose pinned to her shoulder. She has great hair, funky and distressed. Her eye liner is dark and smudgy, making her worried young eyes look huge and luminous.
“Like...I don’t understand why they have to make it so ridiculously hard...” she is saying in a peculiarly toneless voice – a steady monotone. “We, like, all got good OP’s...” she drifts off, looking out the window. Her face is oddly still, although the eyes are restless and expressive. The face matches the voice – it is as though she is trapped in the flesh of her teenage shell.
The conversation around her putters along, but she launches back in, still on topic. “I mean, what is with the assignment? It’s, like so hard to get 750 words down. I’ve got no idea why they want to make it so hard.” The protest is undermined somewhat by the utterly level tone, the bland face.
She is worried, though... clearly worried. It seems that great hair is not enough.