Beth squinted in the sudden bright sunlight as she walked out of the school doors. Sure William McKinley High School was a great school, the greatest in the district, but sometimes it could feel like a prison. Today was the first real day of spring with all the birds chirping, the fresh clean smell of air after a rainstorm, and the buds of flowers just starting to open.
Thankfully, it was the end of the day and she could go home and enjoy the springtime in relaxation with her mother. She was a huge fan of the spring, and each year they would venture out to the park and celebrate the new season with a picnic.
Sliding her cell phone out of her pocket of her jacket, she quickly dialed her mother's number, knowing that she would be ready to pick her up very shortly. Glee Club had run a little bit over due to the fact that Hannah, the biggest diva she had ever met, wanted to make sure everyone knew their dance routines for the upcoming Regionals competition.
Shelby Corcoran picked up her phone after the third ring, "Hey sweetie. How was Glee? Are you finished now?"
Beth smiled into the phone, "Yeah, we're finished. Hannah tried to kill all of us as usual for not picking up on the dance moves right away, but it was just a regular day. Could you pick me up now?"
"Sure honey, I'll be there in about ten minutes."
"Alright, love you."
"Love you too."
Beth slipped her phone back into her pocket and sat down on the nearby metal bench to wait for her mother. She smoothed out the pleated red skirt of her Cheerio's uniform, making sure that there were no wrinkles that messed it up. It wasn't good for the head cheerleader of three years to have a crumpled uniform. Sloppy leaders equal sloppy leadership.
Wait, head cheerleader? Yeah, you read right. The head cheerleader is in Glee Club. That's actually not very uncommon anymore. According to her older sister Rachel, no one wanted to be in Glee Club when she attended McKinley, shipping everyone in it straight down to the bottom of the food chain. None of the popular kids would have ever been caught dead in Glee club, but now it's one of the best things for kids to do at McKinley. Mr. Schuester, the director of the club, even has to cut people because of overcrowding.
Freshman year, it seemed like she was only there for five minutes before Sue Sylvester, the infamous cheerleading coach, stopped her in the hall. "You: Blondie!"
Turning slowly towards the frightening woman, Beth saw that the cheerleading coach was staring at her with her signature scowl. However, once she saw Beth's face, her face softened incredibly fast.
Scrutinizing her carefully, she came closer to Beth, "How would you like to be on the cheerleading squad? We need your body build on the top of the pyramid to make all the fatties in the world wish that they could be a Cheerio."
Stunned, Beth stared back at Coach Sylvester with wide eyes. She had heard stories of girls who worked themselves to the bone all year just so they could have a chance to be on the Cheerios, and here she was being offered a position on the squad without any form of tryout.
"I will take your silence as a yes and will now go to my appointment with the President of the United States via web-chat." Without another word, Coach Sylvester turned and walked away.
Not long afterwards, the position of head cheerleader was vacated after the former head cheerleader fell and broke her ankle. Coach Sylvester wasted no time in replacing her with Beth, the youngest head cheerleader since 2009 when Quinn Fabray was named head cheerleader as a freshman.
Beth smiled at the memory, happy that she was picked out of many girls in the school to be on the cheerleading squad, but also confused at the same time. No one ever told her why she was chosen; Coach Sylvester would always ignore her and her pleas when the subject came up.
Rachel's husband, Finn, did let it slip one night during a family dinner that it was because of her mother. This tidbit of information confused her even more; she never knew that her mom went to William McKinley. But then again, Shelby Corcoran could have climbed Mt. Everest and Beth wouldn't know anything about it; nothing was ever discussed between them about her past.
She was pulled out of her thoughts by the sound of the school doors opening from behind her. Hearing a familiar soft laugh, Beth turned around and saw that Mr. and Mrs. Evans were leaving the school, their arms around each other. It was well known that the two of them previously attended McKinley and were high school sweethearts.
Mrs. Evans was the best math teacher anyone could ever ask for. Many of the male students in McKinley would fail math just in the hopes to get her again. She was young and beautiful, and such a change from the other math teachers who were all very old. Her long, wavy blonde hair and warm amber eyes drew people in and could persuade you to tell her anything with just a smile. It was so easy to talk to her and sometimes you'd find yourself talking with her for a whole period, enjoying every minute of it.
She was very understanding; unlike the other teachers that also worked there. She would actually worry about someone's grades and make time to tutor them to improve their mark. Also, if someone had a problem, math related or not, she would drop everything and help them. She easily was the best person and teacher that ever walked through the halls.
Her husband, Mr. Evans, was the gym teacher and football coach. He used to play for the high school's football team back when the famous Coach Beiste was here and then went on to play for a NFL team. However, one bad tackle later and he was out of a job. That's when Coach Beiste, just before her retirement, took him on as her assistant coach. Soon enough he took the job as full coach, and thanks to him the William McKinley Titans haven't lost a state championship in five years.
He was also the hottest man at the school. All of the girls drooled over him whenever he passed by. Some even started to creepily write poems for him and even call his house at 3 am. If his wife wasn't such a beloved teacher, she would have had her eyes gouged out daily by his fan club. His muscular body along with huge smile and baby blue eyes made him irresistible. He was also the sweetest man ever, and the sweetest husband, leaving huge bouquets of flowers on his wife's desk or other little gifts that would make her smile. It was clear that they were both very much in love.
Mrs. Evans noticed her sitting alone on the bench. "Beth? Are you okay? Do you have a ride?" Her tone always sounded maternal, one of the reasons she was so well liked; she was always so gentle and kind to everyone.
Beth smiled and nodded her head, "Yeah Mrs. Evans. My mom should be here soon."
As usual, she didn't miss the shadow of pain that crossed Mrs. Evans' face when she mentioned her mother. Beth asked her about it once when she was helping her study for a test, but she just brushed it off as nothing. Yet another adult that's hiding something, she thinks.
Mr. Evans spoke up, "You know, we have no problem waiting here with you until your mom shows up. David's not going anywhere," he added to his wife.
Beth just smiled at him; the care that he felt for the students was just like his wife. If someone needed his help, he would stop everything and help them, even if it meant leaving his son at daycare a little longer. "No, no, it's okay. You should get David; my mom shouldn't be much longer."
Another shadow of pain flashed across Mrs. Evan's face. She was honestly a puzzle wrapped up in a mystery. She seemed so open and friendly with all of Beth's friends, but she acted like she guarded herself around her, as if Beth did something to personally hurt her. However, even though she seemed guarded around her, she was still friendly and relatively normal. It was very complicated to explain.
Mrs. Evans looked down at the floor for a moment then looked up at her husband. "Beth's right, we should get David. Then we have so much to do before we visit my mom in California."
Mr. Evans nodded slowly, not taking his eyes off of Beth. "You're right," He reluctantly sighed, "He needs to sleep as much as he can before our trip; he's not good in airplanes."
Mrs. Evans nodded and quickly said goodbye to Beth before turning back towards the parking lot. Mr. Evans, when his wife wasn't watching, slipped a card to Beth, "If you need us for anything don't hesitate to ask. I'm sure Mrs. Evans wouldn't mind."
"Sam, are you coming?"
He sighed and gave Beth one last smile before turning towards the parking lot. "I'm coming right now, Quinn."
Beth watched as the two of them got into their car and drove off. They were really the sweetest people ever. She slipped the card that Mr. Evans gave her into her pocket and took her phone out again to check the time.
Her mother was thirty minutes late. It didn't take that long to travel from their house to school. Beth started to get worried; it shouldn't take this long for her mother to get her.
She began to take deep, calming breaths. Trying to think of something else, she thought of her Spanish teacher and Glee coach. Mr. Schuester was probably the third best teacher in the school, of course behind the Evans'. Even though Beth hated Spanish, he made it almost enjoyable for the whole class.
Mr. Schue was married to the guidance counselor, Mrs. Pillsbury-Schuester and together they had an eight year old daughter named Ava. He absolutely adored her and was wrapped around her little pinkie. In fact, he wasn't even at Glee practice for the last ten minutes because he had to take her to the doctors' for her cough. He couldn't bear to see his little princess sick.
Beth felt jealous of Ava. She had a father who really cared about her whereas Beth had no idea who her father was. Like all the other things in her past, Shelby Corcoran never mentioned anything about him.
There were things that she was able to pick up for herself though. Since she and her mother had different features entirely, she suspected that she got all of his traits. Her blonde hair, softer features, creamy white skin were all from him while her brown eyes, love for theatre and dance, and singing voice came from her mother. When she was younger, she would try to look in the mirror and picture a man with her hair and small facial features, but it was never the same as having the real thing.
They lived in New York City before when Beth was ten. Her mom told her that they moved because she always preferred the fast city life to the slow suburban existence, but Beth always suspected that they moved so they could be away from her father. When she learned that they were moving back to Lima, she was ecstatic; she would be able to possibly meet her father. That was not the case, however. No blonde man with her facial features and slim figure came to her. Soon enough, she began to realize that he was probably just a dead beat that left when he found out her mother was pregnant. Eventually she stopped imagining what he looked like. He didn't deserve her time.
That never stopped her from wondering who it was, though. She hated to admit it, but she sometimes daydreamed about what it would be like to have both her parents still together. Would she have siblings? Would her father drive her to cheerleading practice and ward off all the guys that clamored for her attention? Would he embarrass her like all of her friends dads did? So many questions that went unanswered, and always would …
Sighing, Beth brought herself out of her depressing thoughts. She shouldn't be thinking about him; she should be getting excited for Regionals, she should be going over a cheer routine in her head, and most importantly she should be getting picked up by her mother.
Casting yet another glance to the road, she saw no signs of any car coming or going from the school. Where could her mother be? For a ten minute commute, she was now close to an hour late!
Just as she was about to go inside and see if any teachers were still there to give her a ride home, the sound of tires on gravel made her perk her head up. However, instead of the old 2017 Prius her mother owned, it was a police squad car.
Freezing where she stood, Beth watched in fear as a single police man in a navy blue uniform got out of the car and walked towards her. Please just ask the way to a classroom, please just ask the way to a classroom, Beth thought furiously.
"Excuse me, are you Elizabeth Corcoran?"
Reluctantly nodding, Beth held her breath.
"I'm so sorry, but there's been a terrible accident."
Beth closed her eyes, not able to properly pay attention to what he had to say after that. The words that did penetrate her mind, though, were ones she'd prefer to not have to think about; mother, hospital, drunk driver, coma, so sorry.
Please leave a review! I'd really appreciate feedback on this story, or at least some reviews! Thanks to Gemma945 for being the only one who put this as a story alert! I really appreciate it and you forever have my love!