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“You’re growing up nick, you got to let it go,” Said max, my best friend. Tonight we were going to a school dance, lasting all night. Meaning it was a lock-in as well. Unfortunately there is one problem with that, I still sleep with a stuffed animal that I’ve had since I was three. My father gave it to me for a gift on my birthday. But, four years later, he was killed in a terrible car crash. It reminds me of him so much and comforts me like a blanket of warmth and joy wrapped around my body. So, even though I’m already sixteen I sleep with it every night and can’t go without it.
“I know max,” I replied, “I’m just going to slip it into my pillow case. No one will notice.” Max gave me a look of disbelief and shook his head.
“Dude, you do know Brian will try to humiliate you in front of Tess any way he can,” he paused, “I wouldn’t bring it, I mean its just one night I think you’ll live”
I just rolled my eyes and stuffed my stuffed cat, Amy into my pillow case. Nothing was going to happen.
“Hurry up max,” I shouted, “were going to be late for the lock-in” he groaned and began to jog so he was walking next to me. As we neared the school, with our duffel bags in hand, I could see Tess and her friends walking into the building. A shiver went up my neck.
“Go talk to her dude,” said max, “honestly, I think she might like you too.”
I gave a small laugh, “no, she’s way too pretty for a goth boy like me and besides, she’s got to like someone else.”
“Whatever,” he said “but what good is it to sit around doing nothing? I mean why wouldn’t she like you? I mean, your cute, funny sensitive and,” I cut him off. I was annoyed
“MAX! SHUT UP! She doesn’t like me ok? No one in this stupid school would like a goth boy.” We continued walking in awkward silence and got to the school. Sound was pouring out of it from the loud music and people screaming and laughing. Once we had walked in set our stuff on the sides of the room like everyone else’s, we walked over to the nearest and least crowed wall and stood. Within five minutes, Brian saw us and trotted over with his friends.
“Hey goth boy!” he sneered “why aren’t you at home painting your nails black or crying yourself to sleep? Isn’t that what you usually do?”
I frowned. I hated Brian ever since fourth grade when he pushed me in the mud. I tried to think of a quick comeback. Failing, I said nothing. After him and his friends got tired of me not reacting to the harsh and dirty things they said they left. So, max and I began looking at all the beautiful girls and pondered if we would ever get a date. I looked to the left corner where Tess and her friends were dancing and goofing off. She was beautiful the way she twirled and laughed. I then tried to get the courage to talk to her. So, I pushed myself off the wall I was leaning on and walked over to her and her friends. After I got within seven feet of her, her friends giggled and pointed at me. She turned around and smiled her beautiful smile.
“Hey,” she said. My stomach flipped. “Your nick right? Nick Sheppard?”
For a second, I couldn’t remember who I was. Oh yeah, she was right I was nick Shepard.
“Uh huh. That’s me!” I said, stuttering on almost every word. There was an awkward silence between us and suddenly a brunette girl who was standing next to Tess shouted “PILLOW FIGHT!” Tess laughed and reached for the nearest pillow, unfortunately, that was my pillow. The one with Amy in it. Oh crap. She hit the brunette girl with my pillow and suddenly, my stuffed animal fell out. I franticly tried to kick it out of the way, but it was too late. Tess saw it and picked it up.
“Whose is this?” she said holding it up for all to see. I blushed, and Brian came over to the scene.
“Oh,” Brian said with a chuckle, “I’m guessing that’s goth boy’s. Hey, aren’t you a little old to be sleeping with that?” people began to laugh. I didn’t know what to do, so with tears escaping my eyes, I picked up my stuffed animal and ran into the bathroom. I locked myself into a stall and let the tears of humiliation fall from my hazel eyes to the floor. I began to feel stupid and wimpy. My one chance to maybe make an impression on Tess was gone all over a stupid habit I should have gotten rid of a while ago. Now, if she didn’t already, Tess must have thought I was a wimp who still acted like he was five. Suddenly, I heard the bathroom door open then max’s deep voice, “hey man, Tess wants to talk to you. Will you come out?’
“No,” I said sniffling “tell her to go away” max’s voice got stronger and angrier
“if you don’t come out, ill bust down that door and drag your little butt out there to talk to her” he paused “I swear nick, I will” I knew he wasn’t joking.
“Fine max, ill go out and talk to her.”
When I was outside the bathroom, I saw Tess standing against the wall with her hands behind her back.
“Nick I’m very sorry I should have asked whose that pillow was before I picked it up, I’m sorry”
I blushed. “No its fine,” I said wiping a stray tear from my right eye. “I just wish that now you didn’t think I was a wimp. But, stuff happens I guess so, we should move on.
She looked at me uneasily, “well, I wont lie I do think you’re a little sensitive.” I frowned looking down at my feet. Now there was no point to even dreaming for a chance to be with her. “But,” she continued, “I like sensitive guys.” I looked up.
“Really?” I said my voice more hopeful than before “but, do you like me?” after the words escaped my mouth I realized how stupid that sounded.
She smiled at me. “Maybe…….” She said trailing off, “but I’m sure Mary does”
I was confused. “Who’s Mary?” I said. Then Tess pulled out a small stuffed dog from behind her back. I smiled. “This is Mary.” She said, looking into my eyes for a reaction.
“Oh,” I began, “well, ah…” then Tess shushed me and put a small fragile finger to my lips and in a whisper said, “hey, this is the part where you kiss me” I smiled. Looking deep into her beautiful brown eyes. “c’mon,” she continued, “just kiss me cute little goth boy”