I hope that teenagers, like myself, read this entrancing novel and find themselves falling in...
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Flickers of sadness etched periodically as the final minutes between second and third hour rapidly came to a close; was it becoming natural to feel distant and unimportant whenever it was time for Alex and I to separate? Maybe, but the solid look of similar feelings glinted ever so faintly in her eyes, too. I had my hands shoved deeply in the pockets of my loose blue jeans, staring transfixed at the shorter girl in front of me with an index finger tracing the outline of locker number 214. Her mind
was blocked like titanium steel walls pillared around it, abstrusely closed and irrevocably impossible to read. A pained yearning latched the pit of my stomach—I wondered seriously if I’d eventually die under the curiosity of what Alexandria was thinking. Of course it always kept me on edge, still…it entertained me. On some days, I’d get closer than ever to deciphering her mysterious enthrallment, eager for the glimpsing opportunity, and then the walls would suddenly shoot back up in defense, repelling me entirely and the truth slipped away. Finally, with a defeated sigh, I decided to ask her directly.
“What are you thinking right now?” I looked down at her solemnly, previous humor left behind at the gymnasium. Alex’s wandering eyes locked to mine quickly at the sound of my voice, like she was lost and thought and I had pulled her back to reality.
“What?” She blinked; hand paused on the vents of the locker. “Sorry, I wasn’t paying attention.”
I smiled, tamely reaching for both our school books and closing the locker. “What are you thinking about?” I repeated.
“Oh.” Alex scrunched her eyebrows together in concentration, holding eye contact, once again looking at me with a different expression than any before. “I was just wondering how next hour would be, and if it’d go as easy as first hour.” She shrugged plainly.
I nodded once, and then beckoned for her to follow me. “Come on, I’ll walk you there. Don’t be afraid,” I reminded shortly, glancing at her briefly to reflect my sincerity.
She paced soundlessly along, walking near enough to my back in order to guide effortlessly through the crowd I divided. For a second, I felt her hand brush softly against the loose fabrics of my shirt, losing contact instantly, and whoosh of air escaped her lips. I clenched my fist together, careful not to let her see the pure frustration that was utterly childish; what was she thinking now?
I passed by my third hour Biology room on the way to Computer Engineering towards the opposite side of the school in a small corner at the end of a long hallway. I paused by the door, like first hour, and handed Alex her books.
“Computer Engineering,” I muttered acidly under my breath. “I hope you don’t get your brain blown apart during this class.”
“Why?” she gasped in a rasped hiss, nerves immediately tensing up. She grasped the binding of her thick book like it was going to save her life, digging fingernails in the rippled pages.
I held up a hand woefully, widening my eyes and holding back amusement. “Hey, calm down!” I said hastily. “I meant it as a joke, Alex!”
Her eyes popped open as wide as they could go, and she smacked my arm angrily. “I’m going to kill you!” she exclaimed through gritted teeth.
“Relax.” My voice cracked as I said the word, wrestling back a sinister grin. “Did you honestly believe I meant that as a literal statement?”
“No,” she argued; face stinging red in her cheeks. “Metaphorically, but I thought you were saying I was gonna hate this class or something…like people were awful here, or the teacher!”
I smoothed out my face, but my eyes beamed with obvious indifference despite Alex’s bitterness. “No, nothing like that. I meant it’s a very difficult subject to learn.”
She deflated the suspense of air from her lungs and the red dematerialized from her cheeks. “Thank God,” she sighed. “Blake, you should know better than to freak me out like that.”
“If it wasn’t your first day of school, I would’ve laughed at you for being so melodramatic about something so foolish and idiotic,” I chuckled. “Don’t be so stressed out, Alex. Everything is fine.” I returned back to my friendly smile.
“Okay,” she replied, and she also went back to her kindest, unsmiling expression—only her eyes seemed to smile. It amazed me how clearly she could express emotions just by the light in her gaze, or the liquid of the bright lavender…
“See you,” I dismissed in farewell. “I’ll be waiting here.”
“I know, see you.” She didn’t move for the quickest second, catching my eye swiftly, and stepped in the classroom. I imminently turned around and almost jogged to Biology, the bell ringing just as I swept through the doorway.
Peter saved my seat and greeted me brightly as I sat beside him. The teacher hardly noticed my entrance and was already speaking.
“Hey,” Peter said, a notebook in front of him and a microscope. “I finished your Language homework for you—I figured you’d be pretty distracted all day with Alexandria being new around here and all that.”
I gave him a gratified look, opening the Biology book to the page directed on the board. “Man, thanks. You’re right, but only for today. I won’t let you sneak around all week and complete my homework.” I grinned. “Besides, knowing your grades, I’d probably flunk every class by then.”
He jabbed me roughly with his elbow, and I winced back. “Shut up,” he whispered. I was still grinning at his look of fake anger, and we both laughed. I didn’t listen to a word the teacher spoke the rest of the hour, but managed to write down the assignment and finish it before the hour ended. Otherwise, I allowed my mind to trickle freely in its own stream, unsurprised by which the thoughts landed at.
Each little facial expression, every word or question that pieced together from purple lips, even the style of clothing envisioned distinctively in my head. I imagined easily the blank look upon her face as she fumbled to the back of the room, interred her nose in a random book and did not move an inch the rest of the hour—although I knew little about her personality within, Alexandria was extremely predictable in at least some measures. How she acted around strangers, the way she tapped her foot when anxious or kept her eyes focused on the ground when she was either embarrassed, resentful or simply did not wish to see or speak to anybody. The vein that bulged lightly from the base of her neck whenever she was getting frustrated or annoyed, the solidity in her eyes when she wanted to hide something from me or desired to show no emotion—or very little of it—at certain times. The way she bit down tenderly on her lip when she wanted to say something but thought better of it, which was usually a confession or the truth, and sometimes when she actually did say something that burdened her in some way. The way she played with her hair when her mind was drifting off or how she curled into a ball on the couch when she was tired…
The more I thought about it, the more I realized how much I did know about Alexandria without particularly knowing inner favors or preferences.
And then the eternal boredom of the class period wormed its way in my brain…something else that caught my attention. Could it be that whenever I was around her that I felt excited and happy, but the time I spent away from her was dreadfully ordinary and outstandingly…boring?
I think that it was gradually starting to be very, very true.
Peter nudged me, and my thought process was cosmetically destroyed. I remembered that I was still sitting in Biology and not some random, foggy classroom. He looked at me with questionable eyes.
“You all right, bro?” he asked, resting his head on his arm.
“I’m fine,” I said distantly, looking at him but not actually looking at him. “Just lost in thought.”
“Ah.” He understood, and laid his head back on the desk, falling asleep on the cold texture.
I jumped abnormally when the bell rang, but it didn’t take long for me to begin swiping up my books and stuffing them carelessly in my bag. I waved at Pete, saying, “See you next hour!” and practically dashed out of the room. For a moment I felt guilty pushing past innocent students, some of which glared at me or barked a complaint. I ignored them all and slipped out the door and into the jumbled zoo of hallways. I shoved and fought my way through the mass like I was trying to run away from a wild tiger, until the Computer Engineering classroom was a short distance away. Even then I pushed forward, stopping just outside the door (again out of breath) and waited for Alex to come out.
She was there seconds later, a sheepish and potentially regular look on her face. When she saw me, her eyes lighted as before and her mood shifted. She leaned by the wall, only a foot away from me, and stared up at my happy to see you countenance.
“Hey,” I said casually, but with a taint of shock in my tone. “How was class?”
“Fine,” she responded uninterestingly.
“Was it?” I questioned, unconvinced. We were already walking automatically down the hallway, side by side in spite of the crowd. It worked out better than expected, though, and I could hear her quite clearly amiss the loud noises of chattering and chortling.
“You want me to be honest?” The way she said it made it sound as if she had just experienced her worst hour yet. She stared at me gravely when she had asked, wanting a real answer.
“Of course,” I mused, hoping the answer wasn’t dreadfully terrible enough to send me in frenzy or tie my heart in a knot. Knowing Alex’s circumstances, however, the expectancy was rather high and out of my favor.
“It was…very boring,” she stated. Simple and short, she shrugged her shoulders and tossed the thought aside.
“Why?” I asked for further information, keeping my eyes on the bundle of teenagers ahead.
“I don’t know.” She hesitated, seeming flustered momentarily; her eyes were fixed on my face, and then they were dropping to the floor in front of her. “I guess…”
Her voice was so low I had to lean down so I could hear her. It was a challenge, tilting my body and somehow weaving throughout the hallway with dozens upon dozens of people surrounding me, and trying to stay next to Alex the whole time.
“Whenever I’m not with you, everything’s plain and uninteresting. There’s really no other way to describe it.”
I had no response to that, for the very same thought occurred to me merely minutes ago, during the same hour. Was it possible that she had realized that at the same time I did? Was it possible that she thought the same way I did about everything, even during all of my doubts and concerns? I found that highly unlikely, but still, she’d understood the same thing I did at almost the same time. The small possibility was dangerously pleasing to me, and ridiculously hopeful…
I instantly shrugged the thoughts completely out of my head, deciding not to comment on her words altogether.
We made it to the locker, and a bubbling of eagerness swelled in me again. It was time for fourth hour Home Economics—one of the classes I had with Alexandria. I enthusiastically put away our books and got out two copies of the same book, along with notebooks and pencils. A wide grin split my face, and I motioned for her to follow me before we had a chance to talk.
“Why do you look so happy now?” she demanded skeptically, keeping up with my pace.
“We have this hour together,” I said simply, walking faster than usual.
That was enough for her; Alex’s mood lifted even greater than before, and she easily matched my enthusiasm in her own way. “Perfect!” she exclaimed.
We looked like two crazed frolickers nearly skipping to class together, but I doubted either of us cared in the least. The staring eyes and quiet gossip I was already growing used to, and apparently, so was Alex. We scurried obliviously to our class, exchanging looks and me laughing at her weird way of expressing happiness without appearing half as jovial as I did; but somehow, I just knew. I just knew she shared the same excitement.
We were the first to arrive in Home Economics, taking two seats at the very back of the classroom. I laid her books down in front of the chair she sat in. The desks were not ordinary, instead they were long tables stretching across a quarter of the classroom beside the stoves and kitchen stations. So, with that, we were able to sit together. I opened up my book to the page on the board and instructed her to do so. I almost kicked myself because of how eager I was—eager to witness precisely how she acted in a regular classroom and happy at the chance to grasp a better understanding of her personality.
Her sitting position was similar to the way she sat at the dining table: leaned over the table with her legs pushed under the chair, one leg folded on her lap and the other pressed on the desk. She flipped lazily through the pages and glanced down at the book with her head raised up; looking almost like she did when her eyes darted to the floor frequently. I noticed her chair was tilted at an angle that leaned more in my direction, her posture almost reflexively aligned with the chair itself. Then, as I caught myself basically staring at her, Alex flicked her head towards me and caught my eye.
Surprisingly, she didn’t question my obvious stare, but gave me her almost smiling look. “So, do we get to cook in here?”
“Most of the time,” I replied mechanically, laying my head on my supportive hand that was held straight up by my elbow. “But today, unfortunately, we’ll just be reviewing over notes and probably have a short assignment at the end of the hour. It’s easy, though.”
“Oh, alright,” she said, but her tone didn’t sound the least bit disappointed; on the contrary, it was exceptionally bright.
“You don’t seem downed by that news,” I laughed softly. “I suppose you aren’t ready to make a fool of yourself by catching the room on fire.”
She scowled disapprovingly. “As a matter of fact, that wasn’t what I was thinking,” she growled amusingly. “But thanks for the rude assumption.”
I rolled my eyes, the same as she whenever aggravated, but with more of a mock. “I’m never correct on what I assume you are thinking.” I shook my head in disappointment. “But I was joking, anyway. Maybe you should tell me what’s going on in that head of yours more often.”
Alex scoffed. “How can one person be so crazy about knowing what someone else thinks?”
I smiled sheepishly. “You confuse me, all the time. I hate stumbling around in the dark.”
“How so?” she asked.
Just before I could answer, the bell sounded. I looked around wearily; the classroom was now full of students, every seat occupied, and I’d never noticed. Wow, that’s really weird. I smiled to myself, shaking my head. “I’ll tell you later.” And soon the teacher was resuming his long speech about different ways to cook varieties of foods.
Alexandria watched the teacher carefully, discriminately taking notes and occasionally glancing at the textbook; it was strange to see her so focused in—I half-expected her to be bored and remain buried in her own personal bubble. From time to time, she’d look over at me nonchalantly, never using direct contact, and turn her attention back to the lesson. I tried to concentrate on my own set of notes, but for some reason, I found the girl next to me invigoratingly distracting. My mind slipped every few seconds and I caught myself half-looking, half gawking at her like some kind of mentalist. Why was she so intriguing? Although Alex acted more or less casual (ordinary was not the proper word…there was nothing plain about Alexandria), there was something about her that never ceased to draw my attention like a fish on a hook—unwillingly at best, but fascinatingly interested. This was utterly insane, and unquestionably abnormal to be zoned in to such simplicity. Yet, it did not matter either way, because it was happening to me.
Eventually, I sighed silently and crossed my arms together, angry at how easily frustrated I was at the littlest pieces of unimportance. I was annoyed that I didn’t know more about her, I was aggravated she was such a mystery to me, I was hopelessly confused as to why she fascinated me so, and I was mad that I didn’t have any answers to everything. It was outlandishly absurd of me to be provokingly stumped, repeatedly, every minute I spent with Alexandria. Something had to be done, and that was the only thing I was absolutely positive about. Whenever I next had the chance, whether it is sometime this hour, later in the day or even at the apartment, I promised myself I’d talk to her in full detail about everything I wanted to know. No more evasiveness, no more beating around the bush or getting half-answered questions or withholding information or anything. I would spend the rest of today doing everything in my power to get to know Alex much more than I did now.
Eliminating all other solutions, I scribbled a quick sentence on a ripped piece of paper and slipped it to her. It simply read: Alex, I have so many things I want to know about you. We need to talk today, sometime, if at all possible.
Alexandria read the note quickly, and I saw her stiff up and her back straightened, as if someone had just dropped an ice cube down the back of her shirt. Her face flushed, more pale than usual, and she looked at me calculatingly with soft, unspoken eyes. I didn’t know how else to react but smile bleatingly, confidently. Successfully yet strangely, she eased and nodded meekly, and then neatly placed the note in her pocket. But as she turned away, I wondered if there was a part of her that felt…unsure. Again, I wished enviously I could read minds.
The rest of the hour was purely uneventful, but unfathomably so; I had not a drop of boredom or anxiety the entire period, my mind and body completely relaxed and slow-moving. Was all that really the cause of just one person?
I rose from my seat reluctantly when the bell rang, picked up both mine and Alex’s supplies, and waited patiently for her to walk with me. Oddly enough, I had no urge to rush through the door this time—in fact, Alex and I were the lasts to exit the classroom. We shuffled calmly out and into the roaring halls, remaining silent for a time until we reached the lockers.
“Were you serious about talking later?” Alexandria asked as soon as we stopped, uncertainty written clearly on her face.
I cocked my head to the left. “Of course I am. Why wouldn’t I be?”
She shook her head. “No reason,” she mumbled. “It’s just shocking how much you wanna get to know me all the time.”
“If it’s a sin to be curious about you,” I said, flashing a grin. “Then I’m definitely going to hell.”
That made her smile—yes, smile—in the faintest and most subtle way it was incredibly hard to notice. But I noticed it. “So am I,” she agreed. Then, her eyes flooded with a new concern that she spoke aloud, her voice muting to a low volume, mood sinking like a weighted boulder. “I guess this means I have to leave you now, right?” I saw her shoulders sag slightly.
I amazed myself by keeping from gaping this time—even though I knew she enjoyed spending time with me, even if just a little, she had never worded her remorse of separation quite like that, and never so seriously. To my bursting delight, the feeling was mutual.
“Yeah,” I confirmed hollowly. “I suppose it does.”
She muttered something unintelligent under her breath, and I couldn’t make anything out. She sighed and said, “Where’s my next class?”
I smiled dully and lifted the atmosphere. “Not far—just try not to forget your name this hour, all right?”
Alex made a face at me and snorted. “Try not to die of absolute boredom, all right?”
“You keep your promise, I’ll keep mine.” I smiled tauntingly.
She did her most favorite habit—rolled her eyes and walked away. I laughed shortly and roughly, a few spectators looking at me like I had gone insane because of my sudden outburst. Alex turned abruptly and glared at me murderously. “What!” she demanded harshly.
I pointed in the opposite direction and stifled an unmanning and chuckling expression. “Your class is that way.”
Groaning in frustration, she went the other way and stomped off, aggravated. I snickered and followed, soon taking the lead and showing her the way.
“On the bright side,” I murmured lightly as we stopped outside the door. “We have lunch together after this.”
“So I’ll be able to spend more time with you again soon?” she asked, a hint of eagerness in her tone.
I tried not to let my stomach tickle with delight at her words, but failed miserably. “That’s right,” I said, taken aback with gleeful surprise. I smiled, and it felt natural and easy to do.
“Good.” She smiled at me just with her eyes now, and took her books from my arms. “See you soon, Blake.” And she was gone.
I didn’t stop smiling all the way to American Government, exuberantly thinking back on how successful and intensely surprising Alex’s first day of school turned out to be.
Not even the horrible and drooling punishment of fifth hour could ruin my mood. I happily took my seat and flipped to a random page, and then scribbled randomized notes on paper—I was never really in the classroom that hour, but my body routinely went through the stubborn process of breathing and mindless working. Before I became too anxious, the bell sounded, the sweetest sound my ears ever experienced, and I had to stop myself from sprinting out of the room. Fifty minutes of torture complete, endless spans of meaningless time wasted in the hands of hundreds of seconds. Would there ever be anything more comforting and fun than spending time with a girl that brightened my moods better than anything else, even from the few short weeks I’d known her? I didn’t think so. This was good this was exciting, and I dared to wonder if she would outmatch Peter at this stunning rate.
I scurried down the hallway faster than I believed possible, reaching my destination faster than ever before. Alex, to my tremendous bewilderment, was the first person out of the room this time. She had just exited the moment I approached, a smile already gleaming on my face.
“Hi,” she greeted immediately, curling a finger through her hair. “I’m surprised to see you still alive.”
“Hi, Miranda,” I greeted back, taking her books. “Oh, wait…is that your name, or did you forget?”
A soft, contagious chuckle erupted from Alexandria, a sound that instantly made me want to join in. “Funny, funny,” she said, impressed. “I think I keep you around just for the sole purpose of your occasionally funny jokes.”
“That would be quite fair,” I agreed humorously. “Considering I only allow you to stay at my home on the often occasions you amuse me.”
She raised her eyebrows, exaggeratingly offended. “Gasp,” she said coherently. “What ever shall I do when I’m no longer amusing to you?” She hung her head in shame.
“Come with me, you silly girl, and try not to get a big head.” I nudged her lightly and walked ahead, Alex following behind me, chuckling again.
The lunchroom was more brilliant and exotic than its standard dullness, or maybe that was just me. The guys sat at the same table, Peter and Daniel joking loudly, and the line was fairly short. My eyes fell on the empty seat that used to hold Michael, and I smiled voluntarily.
“Do you see the table Peter is sitting at?” I asked Alex, pointing.
“Go sit in one of those empty seats, and I’ll be back with our trays in a minute.”
Swift gratitude came over her. “Okay, but…I have to sit with a bunch of random strangers?”
“They know you’re with me, and won’t say anything,” I assured. “See you in a minute.”
Alexandria walked hesitantly to the table, and I took my place in line. Whistling without sensuously realizing it, I had two plates of chicken strips in my hands before I knew it. I strolled to our table, greeting the guys individually, and sat down beside the only girl.
“Bros,” I announced, scooting a tray in front of her. “As you probably know, this is my friend, Alexandria. She’ll be chilling with us at lunch every day now; is that cool with you guys?”
“Absolutely!” Peter chimed, grinning widely.
“All cool with me, homie,” Daniel agreed.
“Heck yeah!” Brad jumped in, taking a chug from his soda.
Alex nodded bleakly at each one of them, but kept her lips sealed. Peter smiled at me encouragingly, and I gently nudged her with my arm. “Don’t be nervous,” I murmured quietly. “You can trust these guys here.”
Alex scowled reproachfully, but her eyes were light. “You’re the only person I trust.”
I nodded in understanding—personally, earning Alexandria’s trust was a major step for me. It could’ve only grown from there, a fact that always made me happy on the inside.
“She can be a bit shy,” I told the group, staring particularly at Alex with a smug smile. “But once she loosens up, you won’t get her to stop talking—mostly about herself.”
Her penetrating death glare cracked me up, and I knew what she wanted to say to me right then: Shut up, Blake! You can be so naive sometimes! That simple thought only increased my low chuckles.
“I’m sure she’ll come to love us soon enough,” Dan smiled slyly. “Don’t worry; we’re friendly enough once you hang around us long enough.”
“Dan’s a freaking poet and he didn’t know it,” Brad uttered grudgingly, but with a sense of humor.
“Shut up,” Dan snapped. “Or I’ll make that pretty face of yours look like a jigsaw puzzle.”
“Intimidating,” Brad replied with mild sarcasm. “Too bad I don’t care.”
“Mom and Dad, please stop arguing,” Peter jumped in, rolling his eyes and cramming a chicken strip in his mouth. “The last thing we want is to get a bad first impression to our new lady friend.”
Contrarily, Alex was hiding back giggles during these measly spouts, seeming to feel a little more comfortable than a few seconds ago, but still too tense to be natural. I shook my head out of amusement and dug into the fries.
Other than a few entertained looks here and there, Alex primarily picked at her meal and constantly flicked her eyes in my direction, the chair tilted just by the bear breadth of inches from her comfort zone, or “Boundaries” as I liked to commonly refer to it as; which fit the justified meaning perfectly. But, as I began to notice, her boundaries gradually became thinner and thinner as each week passed, until maybe, possibly, she would act more like a regular human being instead of defined paranoia. I contemplated these thoughts and accusations intently while Alex continued to look over at me briefly and slowly chomp on chicken.
The bell sounded too early, and Alex and I had barely spoken to one another the entire break. I slumped subtly at the separation, concerned at how important it now seemed compared to weeks ago. Alexandria looked almost as disappointed as I felt, but still, the difference was quite massive in my opinion. Verily, I was learning more and more every day.
“Time to leave,” I said plainly as we rose and headed out the door.
“Thank God,” Alex mumbled. “Now I’m spending too much time with you for sure.”
I glanced at her feverishly, taking in her expression, and her face was blank. However, her eyes, once again, gave her away. Studying them more closely was starting to help be a lot.
I walked her to class after exchanging books, handed them to her, and said, “We have last hour together, so try not to hang your head too low.”
A gentle, hardly visible but outstandingly contagious smile lighted her pale, discriminating face. “I’ll do my best, and you try not to cry for too long.”
“I’ll resist the temptation,” I grinned. “See you after class.”
I scurried solidly to class, barely remembering which class I had, and sat down at some random desk. I took notes, listened to whatever teacher it was preach about something in Spanish, stared at the board and said a few words to Peter…but that was all I could do before the hour was already coming to a close. It was so short, but years later before class was finally over and I was eagerly dashing to the door once again. Alex was already waiting, arms crossed in an X over her chest and book, feet together, and eyes looking harmlessly around.
“See? That wasn’t so bad,” I said as soon as I approached her and kindly took her books.
“Too short,” she commented huskily. “Now I have to deal with you for another fifty minutes.”
“So venomous, but yet such a bad liar.”
We were almost to Algebra, swinging by the locker and making our way to the classroom. Alex and I went to the back and otherwise went through usual routines; opening our books, taking notes and staying quiet. During this period, unfortunately, we couldn’t talk as easily, and my mind raced all hour as I thought about the talk we’d finally have afterwards. Still, I was not anxious and jittery as I was, but calm and relaxed as if time held me no bound. Algebra III eventually ended, though, and the two of us quickly exited not just the classroom, but thankfully the school.
“I don’t have to work today,” I told her, casually strolling to the front doors. “I took off just in case, for your first day.”
Alex seemed mildly pleased by that, walking slowly and focusing her eyes mostly on the floor, expression calmer and easier than it had ever been. “Blake,” she said thoughtfully. “I think I’m starting to get…” she seemed to choose her words carefully. “…completely comfortable around you. I thought it’d take longer than just a month, but I honestly see us as friends now.” Her eyes were keenly serious.
I took in her words as good and incredibly satisfying, even incredulous on some levels. “What confirmed all this for you?” I asked her respectfully, intently.
She shrugged. “You’ve been helping me so generously today, all through school…not including all this time how nice and sincere you’ve been.”
I smiled brightly, absolutely flattered and feeling wholly appreciated for the first time. “Thank you, Alex.”
She nodded kindly, and I knew she meant it.
We were at the car, driving out of the parking lot, before I broached the subject.
“So,” I started. “Do you plan on keeping your promise about talking to me today, or were you nodding at my note out of courtesy?” My eyes lighted up.
She looked falsely taken aback. “I never promised anything!” she argued. But then, she surmised the smallest smile. “But I’ll make you a deal.”
I raised an eyebrow. “Ah, so it’s deals now, is it?” I asked perceptively.
She nodded, humor in her eyes. “Yep, and you have to agree to it.”
I laughed bluntly. “Humor me.”
“Well, I have to be honest with you…” she began, hesitantly.
“Yes?” I pushed lightly.
“I feel the same way you do, ya know, about what you’re thinking and wanting to know more about you.” Again, her eyes held no trace of humor.
“Really?” I questioned incredulously, trying to keep my eyes on the road. “Do you mean that?” I couldn’t help but feel a ting of thrill shoot through me.
“Yes,” she admitted. “So, for my deal…if you tell me a little about yourself first, I’ll tell you what you want to know about me.” She crossed her arms, challenging me with the look in her eyes.
I laughed joyfully, filling the car with the sounds of my chortling. “You’ve got a deal,” I agreed.
“Good.” She looked ridiculously satisfied.
I eagerly drove back to the apartment, feeling almost as if the mysteries and unanswered questions were finally about to subside and ease my unendingly furious brain.
I’ll finally get some answers.