Amid the usual cafeteria hubbub of chattering teens and raucous laughter, she sat isolated in the corner. Always with her back against the wall, she watched the others play out their appointed roles.
She loathed them, yet deep within her core, she yearned to be one of them. They advertised their brands with gusto and played the stars in their Hollywood soap operas. The popular one. The funny one. The slutty one. The athletic one. The fat one. The anorexic one. She was the no one.
It was a brand she hated. To them, she was nonexistent. She drifted through long days of silence and indifference, from peers and teachers.
As the cliques gathered and shut out the rest of the world, she smirked at the thought of what she concealed in her backpack. She would show them that mediocrity was not her destiny.
She unzipped the pack and carefully removed what she called her payback. The journal gave her a feeling of power. Her pen became her weapon. While the others overlooked her, she effortlessly eavesdropped on their lives. She documented their secrets, recorded their exploits. She was a fly on the wall. Soon they would know that no one was listening.
I wrote this short story based on the Trifecta Week 91 word prompt (the noun not the verb):
3a (1) : a mark made by burning with a hot iron to attest manufacture or quality or to designate ownership
(2) : a printed mark made for similar purposes : trademark
b (1) : a mark put on criminals with a hot iron
(2) : a mark of disgrace : stigma <the brand of poverty>
To join the challenge or read some of the other stories or poems, click here.