Kathy's heart stopped beating for a second. Her eyes got wide and her mouth opened slightly, but no words came out.
Jenny bit her lip and gave Kathy a pitiful look.
"I'm so sorry, Kathy." Jenny said, "If your grades are too low, then you can't do any extracurriculars. That includes cheerleading."
Kathy didn't say anything. She stared at Jenny with a hurt, indecisive expression on her face.
Jenny looked concerned and said gently, "Kath..."
Kathy turned and ran away.
"Kathy!" Jenny said, reaching outward.
"So, you told her?" Stephanie said as she and her minions came up behind Jenny.
Jenny whirled around and Stephanie said, "Wow, I'm surprised you could actually do it. You're so weak most of the time that I didn't think your heart could take it."
"I'm not weak, Stephanie." Jenny said softly, "I'm kind, unlike you."
A few of the cheerleaders oohed and laughed. Lydia stood meekly behind them, not saying a word.
"Oh, you're kind." Stephanie said, pursing her lips.
"How sweet!" Melonie mocked.
"S-stop it, guys." Lydia said.
The cheerleaders all looked at her and Stephanie walked over to Lydia. Stephanie was a lot taller than Lydia, so she was good at standing in front of Lydia and looking very intimidating.
"What did you say, Lydia?" Stephanie said sharply.
"I-I said s-stop, Steph-hanie." Lydia said, trying to sound confident, "L-leave Jenny a-alone."
Stephanie pursed her lips and said, "What are you gonna do about it if we don't?"
Lydia scowled at her, but her knees were knocking together.
Stephanie smirked and said, "I thought so."
"To answer your question," Jenny said, "Yes, I'm kind. So is Lydia. We have empathy and we understand other peoples' feelings, which is more than anyone could ever say for you girls."
The cheerleaders oohed again.
"What," Melonie said, "So, you're going to defeat us with the power of love?"
The cheerleaders laughed and Jenny shook her head.
"No." She said, "I don't want to defeat anyone, but I do want you to know that being nice to people doesn't make you weak or stupid or retarded. People are more fragile than you think... Be careful."
The cheerleaders continued laughing still. Jenny's speech had gone in one ear, out the other.
Jenny sighed and left the girls laughing at her logic.
They weren't worth it anyway.