Fire Alarm

September 1, 2007
She was sitting in her chemistry class, reading about lithium or something like that. Her curly black hair was thrown up in a ponytail. She had bright acrylic paint on her hands and jeans from art. Her light blue eyes were unfocused. She cared about art, history, and English. She did not care about chemistry. What expression was there in conversions? The fire alarm rang, punctuating her thoughts. Girls scrambled to grab their purses, cell phones, and sweaters. She just headed for the door. They walked across the street to what was deemed a "safe" distance. She stood at the fringe of the class; none of her friends were stuck in chemistry. A guy in gray pinstripe pants and a white button down shirt walked up nonchalantly and stood a few feet away from her. He had shaggy light brown hair and he was a bit scruffy around the chin. His brown eyes were unreadable but somehow vulnerable. As he saw her studying him he flashed a charismatic smile. "Its so annoying to be interrupted in the middle of the learning process by these alarms, isn't it?" "Tragic." She replied. "I must apologize then." He said gallantly "Apologize?" "Students, report back to class that was a false alarm." Interrupted the intercom. "I hope I can make it up to you" He flashed another magnetic smile and walked away. That night he was all she could think about. She sketched him to try and get him out of her head and onto paper but the smile just wasn't right. Everything he said and did repeated in her mind, the way he talked, how his eyes lit up when he talked, and especially his smile. Over the next two days she searched the halls. Her friends noticed the change. Her eyes were usually unfocused, thinking about a new sketch. Now her eyes were focused, darting everywhere, looking for a glimpse of that hair and that smile. "What is up with you lately? You're fidgety and alert, not like you." More than one of her friends had asked her, they were worried about her. Finally after three days of searching, there he was. He was walking alone through the main building. He was wearing jeans and a long sleeve orange waffle pattern shirt but he stood out just as much as he had in his starched button down shirt. She caught up with him and touched his arm lightly to catch his attention. He turned his head toward her and one corner of his mouth rose. "Hey, I've been looking for you. I owe you." "You do?" She said. "For the false alarm fire drill." "Oh, yeah." "I'm sorry but I really have to go, but I will make it up to you." "How? The school is huge." She replied skeptically. "I'll find you." He said, smiled mischievously, and walked away. The next day she was sitting in chemistry again, waiting for class to be over. Then the fire alarm rang. She smiled to herself as she hurried through the chaos of the classroom, out of the door, and across the street.

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