It seems like ages ago that I first saw her, that girl, standing by the fence away from everyone else in the school yard. It was fall like now, the oak leaves on the ground matched her tailored little Prada coat and the Missoni scarf, tied loosely around her neck.
She always stood there, alone, even in the rain. Every now and then I saw her in the hallways, silently passing by like a high fashion shadow. She intrigued me so I talked to her, her name was Stephanie but she wanted me to call her S. Everyone said she was strange but to me she was the most normal person in the Silver Lake area.
I followed her home from school. "Under that tree" she said, "that magnolia, I buried a dead bird last summer. Then in October I felt guilty for leaving it all alone in the cold ground so I went out one night and dug it up. I've kept the little skeleton in one of my father's cigar boxes ever since." The idea gave me goose bumps.
"We have to become friends" she said, "because now we share a secret".