The Teenage Monologues.

After-School Ritual: A Milo Monologue.

“Can you pass the red pepper?” Mollie asked. I passed her the red pepper shaker and watched her cover her entire slice of pizza with it. She looks up at me staring. “May I help you?”

I couldn’t help but laugh. Even though my day was absolute shit, Mollie always knew what to do to make it not that shitty. I pointed at her slice of pizza covered in red pepper flakes.

“You might as well just buy a jar of red pepper flakes,” I teased. Mollie wasn’t even phased by my joke.

“How long have we’ve ate pizza after-school, Milo?” Mollie said as she took a bite of her slice of pizza. “For years,” she answered herself with a mouthful of pizza. I handed her a napkin to clean her mouth.

“I guess old habits die hard,” I answered Mollie.

“You gotta stop hanging out with your dad and Jennifer. Your jokes are so 1990’s,” Mollie stated. I rolled my eyes, sipping my soda. Mollie puts her slice back down on her plate and wipes her hands with her napkin.

“So, our vocal class is… interesting,” Mollie started.

“Our vocal class is just Beverly Junior High all over again,” I said, annoyed at the subject. “Like, how the hell am I suppose to go through that class with everyone knowing that the vocal teacher is also my dad?”

“People will get over it,” Mollie responded. “We have four years to get over it.”

“I barely could get through it today, Mol!” I complained. Mollie started to laugh and continue eating her pizza. I was annoyed that she found my pain funny. “How would you feel if one of your sisters or your parents were your teacher and everyone found out?”

“Milo,” Mollie began. “This is high school. You don’t have to be the middle school Milo version anymore. Fight them! Beat them up! Establish yourself as a tough guy in Waverly! That’s what I would’ve done.”

“I’m not you, Mollie,” I said, feeling defeated. Sometimes Mollie forgot that not everyone handles problems the way she does. It’s times like this that make our friendship not the easiest to handle.

I felt my phone vibrate in my pocket. I took it out and read the notification on my screen.

leesophie: After-school ritual?

I smiled at my phone, and I guess Mollie noticed.

“Is that your girlfriend-that’s-not-really-your-girlfriend?” Mollie said. I looked up at her and rolled my eyes.

“She’s not my girlfriend,” I stated, which was probably the 100th time since Mollie found out that Sophie and are still friends even after middle school. Mollie wasn’t happy when she first found out. For a while, Mollie and I argued about it since she kept saying I was replacing her with Sophie. First of all, I can’t not be Mollie’s best friend; we are practically family… well we are family since my dad married her older sister, Jennifer. I try not to think about the fact that Mollie is technically my aunt… “best friend” is the better title.

Secondly, Sophie’s friendship is so different than Mollie’s. With Sophie, we can talk about different things for hours, go around the neighborhood and always find something fascinating about it. I like hanging out with Mollie, but I enjoy hanging out with Sophie every time we do.

I began to get money out of my bookbag and place it on the table. Mollie rolls her eyes. I sighed, knowing I needed to make sure Mollie was okay.

“Mol, you know we’re best friends for life, right?” I said. Mollie doesn’t answer. I tried again. “And even if you wanted to escape me, you can’t. We’re bonded for life.”

I guess what I said makes Mollie smile and laugh. She sighs before she said anything.

“Just remember that I’m your best man at your wedding with Sophie,” Mollie teased. I threw my paper ball from my plastic straw at Mollie, who then laughs. I put out my fist, in which Mollie gave me a fist pound back.

“I’ll text you later,” I said before leaving the pizzeria.

I finally arrive on the block that my grandparents live on. I saw my grandma water the flowers in her front yard. She stops when she sees me walking closer to her house.

“Milo,” my grandma happily said, kissing me on the forehead. I tried to quickly step back, just in case anyone would see me. “It’s not Thursday; what are you doing here?”

“My friend and I are going to hang out in the treehouse,” I answered. My grandma didn’t say anything back; she just raised an eyebrow. “My friend Sophie.”

“I know which friend,” she said. She started to water the flowers again. “Does your dad know you’re here?” I don’t say anything back. Technically, I’m still with Mollie. My grandma sighs.

“Please tell your father you’re here,” she demanded. I nodded my head as I began to climb the treehouse.

I don’t tell my dad.

The Teenage Monologues.

The Teacher’s Son: A Milo Monologue.

The eighth period of the day finally came; it felt like it took eight years for us to get here. Band class was really cool; our teacher had us sit in our places where our sections are. Being out in the back of the classroom sucks, but at least I can see Sophie play throughout the entire class time. I sit next to some guy named Aaron. He’s this really tall kid that apparently kills on the drums. I’ll definitely see if that’s true someday.

I entered a basement-like classroom next to the back exit of the school. I was initially confused; was this where the vocal room was located? I can’t lie; I was nervous going to vocal. Yeah, I was a Dual major, but something felt weird for me being in the vocal program. In a sense, I felt the need to prove myself even more.

When I entered the classroom, there were a good amount of people already in class. They all seem to be in my grade; in a sense, they all look as confused and nervous as I am. I look at the vocal teacher, trying to not stare at him too hard as I walk towards the seats. Mollie enters a couple of minutes later, waving her hand as she walks toward my direction. She also looks at the teacher quickly, then turns her head back toward me.

“So,” Mollie bagn to say. I roll my eyes and sighed, knowing where this conversation was heading.

“Mol, I know,” I stated. Mollie starts to laugh harder than I expected her to laugh.

“Did you know this was going to happen when you auditioned for the vocal program?” Mollie asked.

“Of course I did!” I answered a little louder than I thought. I looked back up at the teacher, who stands in front of the piano in the middle of the room. More students– both new faces and old– come into the vocal room. My eyes widen to see Laurie Warren walk into the vocal room.

“Is that–“

Mollie turns around and makes a gagging noise. We watched her walk to a seat in the vocal room, in which there were a couple of girls already surrounding her. How the fuck do you even get popular on the first day of a new school?

“I hate her so much,” Mollie stated.

“I know, Mol,” I responded back, trying to end the conversation. The teacher quiets dow the class and I could feel the sweat drip down my face. Please don’t introduce yourself, just pleeeaseee just–

“Hello, newcomers! Welcome to your first day at Waverly High,” the teacher began. He walks toward the chalkboard and picks up a piece of chalk. I feel myself sink further down my seat. Mollie looks down at me and shakes her head. The teacher writes in big letters his name: “Mr. Kamalani”.

“I’m your vocal teacher, Mr. Kamalani,” he introduced himself. I squeezed my eyes shut; I didn’t want to see anyone look at me.

“So, excited for your first day, bud?” my dad asked at the dinner table. Jennifer was feeding my baby twin sisters while my younger brother, Micah, sat at the table playing with his food. My father scolded him quickly before waiting for me to answer.

“I guess,” I answered, not excited. I dropped my fork on my plate and looked up at my dad. “You’re not gonna do those stupid introductions in class?”

“What do you mean?” my dad asked.

“Like can you just teach the class without them ever knowing who you are or something?” I pleaded. My dad started to laugh as he wiped Micah’s messy face.

“Bud, my students need to know who I am,” my dad answered. “I will be their vocal teacher for the next four years.” I placed my hands on my face and sighed loudly.

“My high school experience is already going to be horrible,” I stated. My dad sighed loudly.

“You’ll be fine, bud,” he reassured. “If it makes you feel any better, I will not give you any special treatment. You’ll be another one of my students.”

“Milo, he’s looking over here,” Mollie whispered in my ear. I opened up one eye and saw him quickly glance at me before moving towards the opposite side of the vocal room. I let out the breath I was holding in for what felt like hours.

“So, I will be your vocal teacher for the course of your high school career,” my dad spoke to the class. “We will learn music in different languages, we will sing different genres of music, perform in different venues, and make you guys prepared for your futures beyond the four walls of this classroom.” One thing my dad is passionate about is his music. He was a student in this very school back then, probably sitting in this very classroom too. He was known for having some of his students go to the top colleges for music in the country. My dad cared about his students, and from the sound of it; it seems like his students liked him. It just sucks I have to be related to my goddamn vocal teacher.

“Since these are your peers and choirmates for the next four years, let’s introduce each other,” he said. My eyes widen. No, no, no, no; please! I could feel my face get hot.

“You need a bag to puke or something?” Mollie asked. I didn’t answer her. I just wanted to hide in a cave for the rest of my high school life.

After the first couple of students introduced themselves, my dad looks at Mollie, nodding in her direction to give her the floor to introduce herself.

“Hi. I’m Mollie,” she said. “I think I’m a soprano? Uhm… yeah,” she awkwardly sat down. Laurie chuckled across the room, which made Mollie look over there and stand back up. “I don’t know what’s so funny, but that’s my intro.”

“Class, please be respectful to each other’s introductions. All the drama and bad tension any of you have with each other stays out of this classroom. We are a team,” my dad sternly said. I don’t know if that was fair for him to do. He knows Laurie and Mollie would kill each other if they were left alone in a room with each other. Once he finished, he looks in my direction and nods to proceed with my introduction. This is when my high school life ends; right now on the very first fucking day.

I stand up from my seat slowly and look around the classroom. It makes me a moment to actually say something. Fuck, just get this over with.

“Hi, uhm… I’m Milo,” I started to say. “I’m a band and vocal dual major… tenor, I–“

“–am also related to Mr. Kamalani!” someone shouted from across the room. The class starts to laugh as I quickly scanned the room to see who said what they said. It wasn’t Laurie. It was a guy towards the back of the room.

It was Aaron from my band class.

The Teenage Monologues.

The Epitome of Band Geek: A Sophie Monologue.

Finally.

I walked towards Milo; it would be the first time today that I got to see him. The night before, we spoke on the phone and shared our excitement for high school. It was a new chapter of our lives in a new school, and the bad memories from the past can stay in the past.

“So, all honors class, huh?” Milo asked me. I sat on my bed with my legs crossed and headphones plugged into my phone. Milo and I would always call each other over the phone on the days we didn’t hang out. The past summer was one to truly remember! We spent most of our days riding our bikes in the park, or going to the movies to watch anything and everything. There were even times I hung out with Milo and his best friend, Mollie; she’s definitely a cool person once she gets to know you. Yes, she needs to get to know you first. I sometimes think she only tolerates me because of Milo, but–I mean– things could be worse.

“Yeah, I’m really nervous though,” I responded. “I heard that there are upperclassmen in those honors classes. What if I’m the only freshman in my classes?”

“You got this, Scout,” Milo reassured, calling me by the nickname he gave me the summer we first met. He says I remind him of Scout Finch from To Kill A Mockingbird. To my surprise, he actually read the book for his English class and not just see the movie.

“Yout think so?” I honestly asked. I was nervous to enter a school where the other people were older and more experienced. High school is the place where we spend most of our teenage lives and discover ourselves as people. I couldn’t imagine how I would ever get to be where most of those teenagers are. I will like a tiny guppie in a sea full of big and tough fish.

“Yeah! You never know if you’ll be the only freshman in those honors classes. And even if you are, that makes you cool as shit! Sophie Kim: the coolest freshman in Waverly because she takes classes with the older cool kids!” Milo excitedly said over the phone. I couldn’t help but laugh. Milo always knows the right things to say to cheer a friend up.

“Thanks, Milo. I needed that,” I replied. “It’s just a bummer that we don’t have many classes with each other.”

“We have band, which let’s be honest, it’s the most important class,” Milo stated. Milo and I are both band majors; he’s going to be in the percussion section of the band while I sit in the strings section.

“Really! I’m excited to play with everyone else and be a real ensemble!” I said with a smile on my face. I can hear Milo smile through the phone.

“It’s gonna be so much fun,” Milo finally said.

I was taken aback when Milo greeted me with a hug in the band room. After he let me go, he looked down at the guy that was sitting in the seat next to him. He quickly got up and walked away. I felt bad that Milo would make that guy leave his seat, but when he did, he insisted that I sit down next to him.

“How has your first day been so far?” Milo asked. I sighed loudly and then laughed to shake it off.

“Definitely not what I expected it to be,” I began. “I realized that ‘honors’ was just a fancy word for upperclassmen doing whatever they want to do.”

“Really? So they aren’t, like, super smart?”

“Oh no, they are, but I feel like they do their work but don’t like to participate? I was answering almost all of the questions in my Chemistry class, and one of the older classmates called like ‘the epitome of a band geek. I was so embarrassed.”

“Epitome?” Milo asked.

“It means a person or thing being the perfect example of something,” I answered. “Basically, I am a perfect example of a band geek. The violin case didn’t make things easier.” Milo scrunched his eyebrows; he was upset that someone would say that about me. I put a smile on my face and shook my head. “It’s okay though. It’s only the first day. How has your first day been so far?” Milo rolled his eyes before he answered.

“Okay for the most part, but every damn class they want us to do an introduction of ourselves. One guy was like ‘oh, are you related to Mr. Kamalani?!'” Milo recalled. Mr. Kamalani, Milo’s dad, works at Waverly High. I’m not sure what he does exactly, but I can only imagine how annoying it must be to get asked the same question over and over again.

“I’m sorry you had to go through that. That could be annoying after a while,” I said.

“Not only is it annoying, but I don’t want people thinking I got into Waverly because of my dad,” Milo said, a little annoyed at the conversation. I looked away, not wanting to upset Milo even more. “Scout?” I turned my head around to face Milo again. His face didn’t look as angry as it did just before. “Things will get better for us.”

I smiled and then faced forward when the teacher closed the front door and began class. I took out my notebook from my bookbag, as well as a pencil. Here goes the first date of band class for the next four years.

The Teenage Monologues.

First Day in the War Zone: A Milo Monologue.

High school is a lot different than how it is in movies.

It seems like half of us who graduated from Beverly in June were so excited to leave middle school behind, not realizing that high school is just an extension of all the drama, especially if half of your middle school comes to the same high school as you.

I look at the clock above the blackboard in my classroom. Time has been moving slower than usual, and it’s only the first day of school. High-school math is a different language; how was I passing Math back in middle school?! I look around and see some freshmen that look just as scared as I am, and then there are the classmates that seem to be relieved to not be the “fresh meat” anymore, and then there are juniors and seniors that are doing nothing but talking at the back of the classroom. Man, I miss being a senior in a school.

“So before the bell rings, let’s quickly go around the room and introduce each other!” the teacher said. She pointed toward the first student who sat closest to the door. Poor guy; he looks like he’s about to throw up today’s lunch. The juniors and seniors at the back of the room had something to say about every new face in this goddamn class. I rolled my eyes, dreading when it’ll be my turn to introduce myself.

The teacher finally looks at me with a massive smile on her face. She waits for me to introduce myself. I take in a deep breath and let it out before standing up from my desk.

“I’m Milo Kamalani. Dual major. Freshman.” I quickly said so I could sit back down and the teacher could move on from me. Of course, as I’m making my way to sit back down, someone from the back has something to say.

“Kamalani? Yo, you related to Mr. Kamalani?!” one of the older classmates from the back yells out. The teacher quiets down the class to continue the introductions.

“Yo, Global is going to suck,” Mollie said as she struggles to open up her locker during passing. “Like the teacher thinks he’s teaching a college class for starters, and–” Mollie bangs the locker door with her fist. “Oh my god, can this fucking door just open already?!” A group of older students walk by and laugh in our direction. Mollie turns around and watches them walk by. “I don’t know what the fuck is so funny.”

“Mol, please,” I pleaded with her. The last thing I needed was for my best friend to get into her first fight in high school, let alone with upperclassmen. I walked closer to Mollie’s locker and unlocked it for her. She looked at me like I had just done a magic trick.

“Well, look at you, hotshot,” Mollie teased. I laughed and rolled my eyes at her. We both grabbed what we needed from our lockers and looked at our schedules.

“So, what’s your next class?” I asked.

“English,” Mollie answered in a monotone voice. “Like for fuck’s sake, how are you going to put me into “hard-as-fuck Global” and then into “make-me-snooze English” right after each other? The Waverly god is trying to test me.” If there was one thing Mollie will always be is dramatic, no matter where or what. “How about you?”

“Band,” I said, smiling. Mollie sucked her teeth at my answer. “Man, finally! I feel like I’ve been waiting for a class like this all day!”

“Lucky,” Mollie began. “Vocal isn’t until–“

“8th period,” I answered. Mollie’s face immediately changes; she has on a Joker-like smile.

“Holy shit, we’re in the same vocal class?!” Mollie said, excited. We both hi-fived each other before the warning bell rang. “See you in vocal then!”

“See you,” I responded back. We both went our separate ways, and I realized I had no fucking clue where the band room was.

I walked into the band room and saw a couple of people from my old middle school sitting together. At first, I noticed Davy, who noticed me as soon as I walked in. Davy was introduced to me through one of Mollie’s friends, Ronnie. He actually went to Beverly with the rest of us, but I swear I did not even notice he did until after Ronnie had introduced him to us. He walked towards the seat I was putting my stuff on and sat next to me.

“Yo, look at us being in band class together and shit,” Davy said, nudging my arm. I grabbed my arm; he nudged me a little too hard than he thought.

“I know, it’s crazy,” I said, not as excited as Davy. “How have your classes been? You’ve bumped into anyone we know from Beverly?”

“Besides Ronnie, I saw Laurie in Biology. Kinda funny to see her not being able to bully around anyone since she’s not running the school,” Davy said. Davy was a cool guy but completely plays for both teams. He was friends with Simon, Laurie’s… ex-boyfriend, I believe? They’ve been all over social media this past summer breaking up and making up; I don’t even know what the fuck they are anymore.

“I tried to say hi to her,” Davy continued. I raised an eyebrow at him.

“Really? How did that go?” I asked.

“… She looked at me and said, ‘do I know you?'” I choked in my laugh. Davy sucked his teeth and brushed the embarrassment off. “It’s whatever, we’re in high school and there are waaay more girls prettier than her.” I shook my head about his response.

I looked up towards the front of the classroom where the door was. I instantly smiled; it felt like I waited the whole day for this. She looks so pretty today. She finally sees me, which makes me even smile more. She smiles back and starts walking in my direction.

“Hey, Sophie,” I greeted her as I got up from my seat.