Unexpected - Amy Marie

Dedication

This book is dedicated to my two best friends.

To my husband Josh...You are my rock and there is not a day that goes by that I don’t know how blessed I am to have you in my life. I love you with all my heart.

To my best friend Valerie...This book would not be in existence if it weren’t for your love, support, and pushiness. Thank you. I adore you...HARD. Real hard.

“Miss Decker, I’m in the Pen 15 club now!” I hear over the chatter of my 6th grade students walking into my classroom. “See? All I had to do was let Aaron write it on my arm,” Jeffrey, one of the more naïve kids, says sticking out his left forearm to show me. Shaking my head, I am horrified to see the word “penis” prominently displayed there in permanent marker.

“Ha! I can’t believe you fell for it, Jeff!” Aaron yells from the back of the classroom. “Pen 15 looks like penis! Jeff has penis on his arm!”

I glare at him and point towards the door signaling him to go to the principal’s office. Aaron hangs his head as he makes his way out of the classroom. He has spent one too many afternoons in detention lately, and it seems he’s just earned himself another. As he exits, giggling erupts, and I turn my attention back to Jeffrey.

“Alright, mister, let’s get this cleaned off your arm as best we can,” I say ruffling his sandy hair.

Being a math teacher at Hudson Middle School has its good days and bad. I don’t really know why I chose that subject except I did well in my high school and college courses and figured it would be easy enough to teach. Little did I know that I would be shaping the young minds of prepubescent, hormone driven tweens. When they aren’t fighting, laughing, or talking, they are sleeping, in class no less. I wouldn’t change it for the world though. I really love my job. Well, I love it minus the parents, like Jeffrey’s, who will most likely blame me for this most recent incident even though I wasn’t present when it occurred.

I love my life too. It’s taken me a long time to get where I am. At twenty seven, I have an established career, three months off during the summer, a great starter home that I share with my completely crazy best friend, Noelle, no credit card debt or student loans, a nice car, and Robert, the sweetest boyfriend who anyone could ask for. I’m not bragging. I fought hard to get here and I’m very proud to have done it by myself. My parents had three kids to worry about. After studying like crazy in high school, I earned a fifty percent scholarship to Northern Illinois University. The other half came from what little my parents could give me and from working my ass off at a restaurant on campus. I walked away with my degree and without a cent owed.

The final bell brings me back to the present. Glancing at the clock I realize I’ve let most of the class pass while I daydreamed and allowed the kids to chit-chat the whole time. Out in the hallway chaos ensues. Papers are flying everywhere. Kids and teachers are high fiving each other. Yearbooks are quickly being signed, and I’m almost on my way to celebrate the end of another successful year of teaching, once I speak with Jeffery’s parents in the pickup line.

I am NOT looking forward to this conversation. His mom and dad are the type of parents who never hold