By Simone Elkeles

Not anything has been an identical because Caleb Becker left a celebration under the influence of alcohol, bought at the back of the wheel, and hit Maggie Armstrong. Even after months of painful actual remedy, Maggie walks with a limp. Her social existence is nil and a scholarship to check abroad—her likelihood to flee everybody and their pitying stares—has been canceled.After a 12 months in juvenile penitentiary, Caleb’s loose . . . if freedom potential never-ending nagging from a transition trainer and the prying eyes of the complete city. Coming domestic may still suppose reliable, yet his family members and ex-girlfriend look like strangers. Caleb and Maggie are outsiders, pigeon-holed as "criminal" and "freak." Then the reality emerges approximately what rather occurred the evening of the twist of fate and, once more, every little thing alterations. It’s a bleak and tortuous trip for Caleb and Maggie, but they turn out discovering convenience and energy from a shocking resource: one another.

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Kendra hung out at his house every day after school; they were inseparable from the start. Every time I happened to glance out my window and spot them in an intimate embrace, my hopeful heart crumbled little by little. That was also about the time my dad left. So here I was, desperately waiting for my dad and Caleb to love me as much as I loved them. What could I do to make the ones I loved love me back? The only thing I was good at was tennis. So I practiced and played and challenged myself every day during 91 the summer between our freshman and sophomore year.

Before. After class I have lunch. I pay for an apple and Coke from money my parents gave me this morning. As I walk through the lunchroom, I hold my head high. Let them talk about the ex-con all they want. Facing these kids is nothing compared to the guys at the DOC. When I turn the corner, I bump into Kendra. It's the first time we've been this close since my arrest. 84 "Hi, Caleb," she says with a teasing lilt to her voice. " I nod. " Boy, do I. We used to take bathroom breaks at the same time and meet in some deserted hallway to make out and feel each other up.

Kendra used to cheer me on during matches. I remember the last wrestling tournament I competed in. I jumped two weight classes to wrestle the big guy. It was a 1-1 tie before I made my move. His legs were as dense as a python, but I was quicker. I'll never forget his name ... Vic Medonia. I wasn't intimidated, although I probably should've been. Vic was last year's state champion. But I won the match. The guy had one word to say to me after the match. Later. 63 I was arrested a week later. " Coach Wenner is standing at the door to the gym, eyeing me.

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