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“She’s beautiful,” Josh said to the young woman sitting next to him, while he kept his focus on the new girl as she walked out of the main office building.
“You don’t even know her!” Nikki cried out, disdain showing on her appealing face. The novel girl was attractive, but of course, Josh thought every girl was attractive. Nikki had learned this early on with him, Josh was a boy who believed he couldn’t be happy without a girl at his side. Nikki thought that’s why they were friends; they were the complete opposite of each other. Even though Nikki was pessimistic, Josh had become her best friend. And even though Josh was a sucker for a tight little body and a semi-good-looking face, Nikki adored the kid and nursed him through the many and frequent heartbreaks he had.
“It doesn’t matter,” Josh mumbled, still motionless and in awe.
“Whatever, I’ll catch you later,” Nikki strode off, obviously irritated. She picked up her books and tossed her long, pin-straight auburn hair over her shoulder. Keeping her eyes on the ground, she was lost in thought until something unyielding hit her blindingly in the side. Nikki tumbled, and hit the earth with a firm thud; she was swiftly smashed back into reality. “Are you okay?” She blinked her eyes a couple of times, then was lifted into an upright position. Vertigo made my head go flighty and the eyes roll back into my head.
“John, dude, get her to the office…I think she may have hit her head too hard,” said an unfamiliar male voice.
Nikki didn’t identify the voice, but she concluded at once that the boy was dim-witted. She refused to have a scene made around her, so she stood up faster than she thought was necessary, and kept walking. “Hey! Wait up.” John followed her.
Nikki sped up her pace, maybe he would get tired and leave her be. “Excuse me,” the tone was exasperated.
“What?” Nikki answered back, with a little more irritation in her tone than she had planned.
The boy gave her a credulous look, “Look, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to hit you; I just wanted to make sure you were okay. I know it couldn’t have felt good to run into me.” Nikki gave a comforting half-smile.
“Don’t worry about it, I’m fine.” She stated, giving herself space between her and the sweet boy in front of her, “I got to go, see you later.”
“Wait, what’s your name?” He asked.
“Nikki Santiago.” The girl replied.
“I’m John, nice to meet you.” Nikki nodded her head, and gave a sudden grin.
She sped off down the hall, not giving herself a chance to turn back around and snag the number from John that she so badly wanted. She pressed onward, English had already started and Mr. Wills wasn’t one for tardy students.
“Ms. Santiago, you’re late.” It was more of a statement than a question.
“Yes, Mr. Wills, I was hit in the hall, and John made sure I was okay.” The girl was hoping the teacher would buy the honest excuse.
“Oh, I see,” He said, disapproval in his manner, “What was the boys name again? If you’re late, I’m sure he is too…” Mr. Wills pulled out a sticky note and a pen from inside his desk.
“John, er, I don’t know his last name…” She said, thinking.
“Jonathan Hall?” He asked.
Nikki thought for a second, “No, not Jonathan Hall, Mr. Wills I think this boy may be new here. He was unfamiliar to me.”
“Okay,” He placed the sticky note and pen to the side of his desk and selected his cell phone next. His fingers quickly dialed a number; I knew it would be the main office. He had me step out into the hall with him. “Yes, I need to know if we have any new students, first name John…” Nikki heard incoherent mumbling from the phone.
“Hmm, okay, I see. Thank you.” He hung up. “Nikki there are no high students named John, the only John we have is in fifth grade. Was that him?”
Nikki considered the boys appearance, there was no way possible that he could have been in fifth grade. “No, Mr. Wills, this guy looked older than me, but not by much.”
“Well, don’t worry about it. Go back inside and have a seat.” Mr. Wills held the door open for her. She took her in the very front of the group of students, right by the entrance. Nikki could peer out of the door’s window, which she loved. She could see different students going from place to place, which she envied. She always stayed in class.
As Mr. Wills was analyzing Romeo and Juliet, Nikki gazed out the window, suddenly, John’s face flashed by the windowpane. Nikki raised her hand instantly, “Mr. Wills?”
“May I go to the restroom?”
“Make it fast.”
She bolted out the exit, hoping John was still out there. As she rounded the corner, she slammed into him. “That’s twice today.” John smiled.
“What’s your last name?” Nikki asked, skeptically.
“Why does it matter?” His stare bore down on my face.
I blushed, an unnecessary habit that happened all too often, “Just wondering.”
“Don’t worry about it, okay?” John replied, a smile playing on his lush mouth.
“Okay.” She breathed, as John took the curve in the hallway, he winked in her direction.
Nikki leaned against the cool, brick wall. Something caught her eye on the wall next to her. It looked like someone had written in black sharpie on a smooth part of the brick: