Clementines

By , Morrisville, VT
With my test resting in front of me, pencil on top, I'm just sitting here, waiting. All around me, pencils are scratching as everyone shades in the little circles. Oh, the wonders of standardized testing. I don't mind it though. Right now, I wouldn't mind anything.

Leaning back to glance at the clock, my foot bumps his. “Sorry,” I whisper, keeping my voice low because we're not allowed to talk.

“It's okay,” he whispers back, his eyes meeting mine for the briefest of seconds.

I hide my smile. It took courage to make my way to this seat, after he'd already taken his. But it's worth it. Just having him so close makes me feel light-headed. It's hard to describe the exact feeling. Somewhere in the middle of dizzy, happy and relaxed, is the perfect word. I always wish I could find that word. But nothing is right. It makes sense though. There's nobody like him, so there can't be a word for the feeling.

I will never understand it. He's just a person. Another living, breathing mass of cells. Sitting next to him, taking this silly test, I shouldn't have all these butterflies swirling around and around. I shouldn't feel like the sky has opened up and is shining a beam of pure sunlight on me. But I do.

I prop my head on my palm, pretending to stare at nothing. Really, I'm glancing at him out of the corner of my eye; seeing his eyes staring down at his test, pencil filling in those last few circles. With my hand shoved up against my face, I can smell the clementine I ate during our break. The fruity scent glides through the blissful haze that comes from being around him and holds me in one piece. Otherwise I just might go floating off into the sky.

Crossing my legs, I make extra sure not to brush his foot again. Then, I fold my arms and set my head down on my desk. It's a good thing I've finished each section a few minutes early. My mind needs to soak this in. My right thigh is inches away from the leg of the table. There isn't much space between that leg and him, so I was forced to move a few inches closer. Not that I had any reason not to. Sitting this close is dangerous though. A few times, he's shifted in his seat, or I've moved a little in mine, and our elbows collide.

“Five minutes remaining.” Our guidance counselor's voice cuts into my reverie.

Just to have something to do, I reach down to adjust my tights. Annoying things; I don't know why I'm wearing them today. We have to walk back up to the school in this frigid weather. Whatever. I'll just walk quickly, or walk with him.

He shades the last bubble with a flourish. As he reaches out to push the packet of questions away, our elbows bump again. This time, he's the one to turn to me and mouth, “sorry.”

I just shrug, not really knowing if I'm capable of speech. I'm sure that intelligent conversation is beyond my limits at the moment. Surprisingly, I'm thankful for the temporary ban on talking. I drop my head back down, smelling the clementines on my hands again. Through a thin curtain of hair, I can see him as his eyes dart around the room, looking for something to capture his attention for the time left of the test.

Finding nothing much to look at in the dull room, he settles his deep brown eyes on me. It's only for a second, and he doesn't know I saw it from behind my hair. But I squeeze my eyes shut and burn the moment in. My soft blue sweater, the smooth brown hair between us, his coffee-colored eyes turned to me, the slight smile on his face and, surrounding it all, the smell of clementines.





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Livvyluv203 said...
Dec. 28, 2010 at 8:45 pm
I really like this a lot :D good job :)
 
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