TITLE: Dear Indiana: Letters to my Future Child from Chance Best, Age Sixteen
GENRE: YA - Contemporary
“I can tell there’s something wrong,” Lucy Jo said, taking my hand in hers. I wondered then why my mother wasn’t more like her and that made me start to cry.
“Oh, no,” Lucy Jo said. “That won’t do. Now, come here.” She pulled me into a hug, and we sat like that while I sobbed, letting it all pour out of me in an uncontrollable wave of sorrow.
After I was done, Dottie brought me some tissues. I wiped my eyes though my face must have been red enough to give away what had just happened.
Lucy Jo started talking again once I’d stopped sniffling. “You can’t give up, Chance. You’ve got to fight back.”
“I tried,” I explained. “It didn’t work.”
“Oh, that,” Lucy Jo said, and when I looked in her eyes, I understood she knew I was the one who’d framed Guillermo.
“You didn’t tell, did you?” I asked her.
“Of course not, but if you try something like that again I won’t have much choice. You don’t have to lower yourself to their level. You have to fight for yourself, not against them.”
I looked into Lucy Jo’s eyes just then. There were tiny red lines sprouting from her hazel-colored irises. I wondered if she, too, got tired of all the bullshit. “I don’t know how to do that.”
“That’s what you’ve got to figure out,” she said. “How do you make you work here?”
“Can’t you just tell me?”
“It's not a magic bullet, Chance. I can’t just go down to the Wal-Mart and buy the answer on the shelf. You’re the only one who knows what’s right for you.”
“Oh my God,” I said. “Why are you so smart?”
“I just am, Chance,” she said. “And for people like us, that’s a curse.”