"Oh my God," he says, standing outside the slurpee cart at the mall.

You stifle a groan. You can tell where this is heading. "Where is she?"

He doesn't notice your pique. Well, of course not. He's a guy. 'Guys' and 'oblivious' are completely synonymous terms. Everyone who's ever been around a male member of the human species for more than five minutes knows that.

"Right over there."

You follow the point of his finger across the crowded mall until your gaze lands on a vampy looking girl in a skirt so short it should be made illegal.

You groan. "Oh god, not another one. . ."

The slurpee man hands you a dime in exchange for the five you gave him. You squint at it disbelievingly, then stick it in your pocket.

Desperately trying to change the subject, you ask him,

"Hey, think I got ripped off much?"

He's not even listening.

"Hellooo, earth to Captain Kirk!" you snap, waving an impatient arm in front of his face. "I said, think I got ripped off much?"

It's like something out of a corny comedy movie, or maybe a cartoon. You can just picture his mouth dropping open onto the floor, and his tongue unrolling like a long red carpet all the way into H&M.

"She is every kind of hot," he says, dazedly.

You feel like screaming. Or maybe smacking him. Or maybe both.

"Then why don't you go talk to her already," you mumble. Because you know that's what he wants to hear.

He turns his head and finally, finally looks at you, his brown shag falling into his eyes endearingly. You bite your lip. Why does such an annoyingly oblivious kid have to be both a) your best friend and b) adorable?

"You really think so?" he says.

"Sure," you say, hoping your sarcasm will pierce the spell this girl's set on him, but knowing it won't. It never does. "I'll just wait here, on a bench, for you to come back. Just like always."

He's doesn't pick up on it. "Thanks! You're the best," he says, dropping a thoughtless kiss on your cheek. He straightens and runs a hand through his hair. He's already looking towards her. You're just a design on the wallpaper. "See you in a few."

You force yourself not to watch dejectedly as he wends his way across the crowded food court toward her and her clean-cut Hollister clones. Instead, you study the tips of your Converse and contemplate buying a new pair. Red, maybe. His favorite color. Or maybe green. Like his eyes.

You want to cry. You know it's not sane or even healthy, this game you play with yourself. You watch him pursue other girls, heedlessly, always believing in the love that's not there, always trying to convince himself that this one, this time, is the real thing.

He never notices that the real thing is right in front of him.

You watch him with other girls, listen to him talk excitedly about each new one in turn, feed his mom lies about why he doesn't come home nights, and rub his back when they make him cry. The lies are exquisitely crafted, the backrubs soothing and methodical, from lots of practice. Too much. You tell him they're all whores, all phonies, that he can do better, that there's someone out there for him.

He nods and agrees and swears off girls for life and then falls in love again the next day.

All the while, you watch him break inside, knowing that it's breaking you, too, and wish that he were yours.

You blink away tears and look up from your contemplation of your shoes, but he's already gone. So are the girls. If you listen hard enough, you can hear their brittle laughter as they round a corner, and can almost see a brown shag disappearing into the distance.

You heave a sigh and wipe your face, and go off to a payphone to call your mom and his. For his mom, you're already crafting him a lie.

Your mom just needs to know that you're coming home alone. Again.

A/N- Hey hey! A simple little one-shot I wrote in my boooring Pre-Calc class one day and posted up in an equally boring Study Hall. I actually think it's pretty good, considering the hostile non-creative environment it was born in. Please review! It makes me feel all fuzzy inside!

Kiss!

Elle