I look at him and then back at my paper. Should be memorizing. Him and then at the page dotted with ink blots from where I had doodled in the margins. God, this could go on forever. I had to get up the balls to tell him one day. Heh. Balls. I had balls but not, evidently, the balls necessary to tell him how I really felt. I attempted to stare at the scrawl and then looked up again through my fringe. That's it- it was now or it was never. My pen, my quill, my writing utensil began to write a blank piece of notebook paper. Dear- "Mr. Thomas?"

I jerk my head up, as does the rest of the class, though I am the only Mr. Thomas in this room. In the school, maybe. My hand darts to cover the dear. Dear no one now, and certainly not dear him. Doe a dear, a very male dear- oh god. I'm making up words to Rodger and Hammerstein. But only they know the depth of my mental anguish! No wonder I receive poor marks. Concentrate. "Yes, Professor?"

"What are you doing?"

"At this moment?" Damn it. My hand shakes when I'm nervous. The left one. I know this because I've been told so, though before someone pointed it out- Preston- I had no idea of my little oddity. I fight the urge to run my fingers through my hair and instead grip the edge of the wood desk.

"Yes Mr. Thomas." Pissing the professor off. That was not wise.

"Memorizing. Professor." I throw the title on, hoping for the subject to be dropped.

"Will you recite for the class then?"

"I can't."

"Why not?" Because I have no bloody idea what the hell I was supposed to be staring at. What class is this anyway? God, am I even reading the right section?

"I haven't memorized it yet."

"Hmph." Ah, what do you say to that, you old windbag you? "Maybe if you weren't writing notes to the ladies in this class you'd be a bit more productive. And who is the object of your affection?" Like I'd bloody tell you, you great prat.

"No one. It's a note to my mother." This will not end well for me, no matter what.

"How touching. I'm sure we'll all wait on pins and needles to hear her reply. Save it for later." He turns and walks away, his damn pant legs swishing. Sounds like a snake hidden, slithering through reeds and dunes but even that's a compliment. Measly worm. I look down for a second and then catch his eye. Him. Him. Him. Him. He smiles and looks back down, back at the notes he's taking, scrawled out in his chicken scratch. He can concentrate. I shove the parchment into my book. Maybe I'll finish the letter later. What was that phrase? Oh yes- longer letter later. Later there could be a letter. And maybe a response.