Pretty Little Liars

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Jacob Clifton: A+ | Grade It Now!
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Destroy Everything You Touch Today

("Try to run me over with a car? Huh, blind lady?")

The shades go spinning across the tile, and the Liars stare slackjawed, and just when you think we're never going to see the eyes of Jenna Cavanaugh -- just when you're picturing them, tentacular or silvered over, Teiresian; the sexual predator, the mad sabotreuse, the warped monster that locked her brother up in a tower, collecting music boxes and snowglobes and killer dolls from an age of death -- the camera flips a trick on you and there she is: Crying. Just a girl.

Just a girl who had problems, big ones, before Alison ever took her down. A girl who was so afflicted by something, whatever it was, that she pulled her brother into it. A girl who was lonely, and then became something more than lonely. A girl who is so grateful for the attention of the strangers all around her that she'll ally herself with anybody -- Ian, Caleb, Ezra -- that shows her the slightest kindness. A girl who walks through those halls every day, hearing the whispers, knowing she's one more thing for Rosewood to point at and fear and swallow awkwardly, averting their eyes. A girl who needs, more than ever, to do things for herself.

The girl that loves her baby brother so much, underneath all the confusion and the sickness, that she couldn't wait to remove the chains she'd put on him. To make it up to him, for the things she did and made him do. The girl that everybody leaves. A girl who plays the flute, and writes beautiful stories; a girl with no friends in the entire world. A girl who wears on her outside what everybody else is feeling on the inside, and scares them to death: Just like every other girl in the world.

"This is Hanna," says Hanna, putting Jenna's glasses roughly back in her hands, "In case you couldn't guess." Hefty stuff. The glasses were a mask, just like the attitude; now she's been seen. The girls leave her there, but she can't move yet.

If you didn't know better, you'd think Jenna's heart was breaking. How ugly she must find herself.

Mike comes after Aria back home, yelling at her about this latest parental fight: "Dump him! Or just say you'll dump him." Ha! I'm so sure Aria would do that. "Lie to them, okay? You used to do it all the time. Tell them what they want to know, even if you have to make it up." But no, because Emily already talked her out of it. Spencer and Jenna are the only ones who really know what's going on, but that's only because we live in their world: The truth is, the only things that matter are the things only Emily knows. Aria promises him this dinner is going to fix everything, and she wills it to be true, hard enough that he relents for a second and heads downstairs...

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Pretty Little Liars

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