"Swap," the word comes from beside me and I start, my attention diverted from the magpie I'd been watching hop across the green field.
I glance down at the cigarette resting in my fingers, realising it's already burned past halfway. I pass it to her, and she gives me the freshly lit one; I don't like the end of fags – she says she can't tell the difference.
She nods at the magpie that's taken flight now, heading towards the hills in the distance, "One for sorrow," she notes, and I laugh, harshly, ironically. She nods again – she knows what I mean.
"Mist's lifted," I say, restarting the halted conversation, and she says,
"Let's finish first," waving the cigarette in her hand gently, before taking another, shallow drag, swiftly followed by another. She smokes fast, I smoke slow. It's just another difference between us.
A few minutes later, we're pushing through the tall iron gate, and onto the grey street, lined with big, silent houses. We fall into step, words drifting like the slowly fading mist between us.
Sometimes we jabber, fast, bullet like words, bitching, laughing, crying. Other times we're quiet, the thoughts that drift across our minds slowly surfacing and answered with a yes or a no or a nod.
She lights up again, and I shake my head – she smokes too much, but what can I do? And when she offers me the silver pack a few seconds later, I take one too, bending my head greedily towards hers, lighting the white stick from hers.
Smoking is just one of the addictions we share, just another of the things we have in common.
We reach the school, and head inside. A quick glance, a small smile and she's gone. I follow her died black hair as it moves down the corridor, and then turn to walk over to my own friends.
"Uh," a voice says as I get near, "I don't know why you hang out with that freak. She is so weird."
And I just toss my light blonde hair, smile my cheerleader smile and ignore her.