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Social Requirements

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He was ugly. His face was too pale and his body too wiry to be considered. He smiled at her and she had to remember these facts. If she forgot, even for a second, something dangerous could happen.

By the time they were both in high school, he had exchanged his glasses for contacts and cut his long, bushy hair short. He was still younger and shorter. He didn’t have the angular, firm build the other boys did. He was thin, but there was awkwardness about his movements, and the sleeves on his shirts always hit just above his wrists.

She had once considered him to be a younger brother figure; a boy she could talk to and confide in and not have to worry about romantic potential. There was no way anything would happen with this boy. So she got to be herself.

People often commented that they looked alike. They could be siblings. That was just because they both had blonde hair and blue eyes, and were now about the same height, but she clung to the assumption with all her might in those last days.

Once, in a moment of weakness, she leaned her hand up to his face and pinched his cheek. It was too impulsive, but she didn’t regret it. His skin was soft and fleshy, and it felt good beneath her fingertips. He smiled and returned the gesture. And they smiled at each other for another lingering instant, feeling the electricity, before she quickly turned away. That was when she knew.

It was strange, feeling the other faces melt away as they gravitated towards one another. They couldn’t help it anymore. He was ugly, and yet, what was this force drawing them closer together? It made the bottom of her stomach pinch and twirl in excitement. It got to be so he was always there, that was just the way it was. And they talked and laughed and narrowed the distance between their arms, legs, faces. It intensified the energy building up inside them. But they never touched. Their shoulders were millimeters apart, suspended like magnets. Because what would people say if a pretty girl kissed an ugly boy?





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Phoenix611 said...
Jun. 12, 2011 at 8:20 pm
Oh. My. Gosh. I have been through like this exact scenario and when i realized the 'social requirements' i basically was so mean to him that i knew he'd never come back just so i wouldnt have to see my mistake in front of me, but now it's summer and i see him almost every day...part of me misses him and the rest shoots him nasty glares to make sure he stays away. its a mess.
 
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