Marylou’s Baccalaureate by Matt DeVirgiliis

Marylou Fisk sat in the back of her Senior English class at Saint Thomas High School. She passed notes — Marylou to Betsy, Betsy to Beth, Beth to Jenn.

Two weeks until graduation and the gang was still together. Just yesterday, they were sharing zit remedies, then tampons, and then kissing advice. From Baptism to First Communion, to Confirmation, and then Baccalaureate Mass, they’d done and seen it all. Never judged and never torn apart. They were as close as friends could be.

In between ketchup-covered fries, a Quarter Pounder, and a vanilla shake, catty comments, and lots of laughs, Marylou slipped in her announcement, a grenade in a rose garden. “I’m pregnant,” she said.

Marylou stood at her Baccalaureate Mass, crammed in the back of Saint Thomas’s Church with the parents who had arrived late. You can attend mass, Father Cuthbert — the principal — told her. But you can’t sit with your class. Betsy, Beth, and Jenn each had planned graduation parties. Marylou still hadn’t received her invitations. The three girls sat in their pew that day, chatting with each other as if they were whole, missing no pieces. Even Marylou’s parents stayed home, ashamed to be seen in church with their sinner.

“At least we have each other,” she said as she patted her barely visible bump.


Return to This Week’s Flash


Filed under Matt DeVirgiliis

9 responses to “Marylou’s Baccalaureate by Matt DeVirgiliis

  1. Beautifully told story–though I wonder in this day and age where such friendships give way instead to planned group pregnancies rather than ostracism if this isn’t a nod to a different time in society. I love what you’ve done here.

    • Matt DeVirgiliis


      Thank you for the comment. You know, I imagined this taking place in a rural, middle America, where religion is still part of daily life. Amazingly, I did borrow some of this from my own life – a friend in high school got pregnant and was not allowed to walk with us at graduation.

  2. Al McDermid

    Wow, that is brutal. So well done.

  3. Ganymeder

    this rings so true. I could just imagine them acting like that!

  4. Pingback: Week #22 – The brutality of friends « 52|250 A Year of Flash

  5. Pingback: Marylou’s Baccalaureate | Matt DeVirgiliis

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s