If Dracula is in his most powerful form during Halloween, Jasmine Dean, as well known as the vampire, has Valentine’s Day to be completely herself.
Midterms start today, and the cafeteria is strangely silent. Notebooks occupy the tables and worried looks occupy the students faces. But the cloudy sky, appropriate for a day like today, has not silenced one voice. “You are going to die, I sweaaar!” a girl yells, hitting the table with hands full of fingernails painted with tiny hearts. Jasmine’s story will have even more emotion than usual, because today is Valentine’s Day, “The most beautiful day of the year, of course!” If you do not know Jasmine, and you probably do, you have heard her yelling a story in the cafeteria, laughing too loudly in the library, or dancing. Always dancing
Her class started two minutes ago, but her story also just began, and nobody in the group crowded around her is going to remind her. Jasmine is the sun this day needs, and her planets are trapped in her gravitational pull, keeping them from their own classes, and from the blanket of papers on the tables, angry with their new rival. Her force extends outward as more people fill the crowded cafeteria, every other person seeming to be one of her best friends. A boy passes in front of her view, through the tables on the other side of the room. “Hey! Come over here, where have you been cutie?” Another pause in the story for a hug of a lot of time spent apart; two days to be specific. This scene repeats two more times before she can finish the story. Famous, no, but she wants to be. Her stage today could be more “Super cool girl!”, but her costume lacks nothing. Sunglasses in the shape of hearts reflect the smiles she has created around her, and her shirt demands “More love” from everyone, a lifetime’s complaint from someone who always gives more.
She woke up early this morning, at ten, for this important day with love in her heart and ten gift bags in her backpack, ready for the fortunate ones. Everyone else will be blessed with her presence and a lollipop. Soon, even the workers in the cafeteria have red tongues.
–“Jasmine, you have to go to class,” her friend says, tapping her watch.
–“Ughhh, chill out girl, I’ll leave really soon.”
A look, one half accusing and the other pleading, is met by an eye roll from Jasmine.
–“Okaaay, I’m going. I love you all!” Jasmine says as she throws a bright yellow backpack over her shoulder and turns around with a hair flip.
“I should go too…” others mutter, collecting their things. “…Yeah, me too, I have tons of homework.” The group disperses slowly, and the cafeteria falls back into silence. The papers breathe a sigh of relief and the worried faces return to their notebooks, more relaxed now without the one-woman-show as the opening act to their exams. All that is left are a few lollipop wrappers as Cupid’s spell leaves with a head of magenta curls, bouncing in the distance.