Chapter Four

Samantha Greene was stalking me. I know, you wouldn't believe it, sir. You think I'm not attractive enough for a dog to stalk me, let alone a pretty girl. But the fact remains. Samantha was stalking me. You know how I knew? Well, I was stalking her too.

But only because, for a guy like me, who has no friends, the summer holidays are the ultimate in boredom. There're only so many times you can blow up a couple of aliens on your X-box. After that, you feel stupid. And then, to make things worse, your mum comes along and insists on watching reruns of Gilmore Girls. That's right Mr. Ludan, you've found out my family secret and can now have my mother arrested for child abuse. She watches Gilmore Girls. Shock. Horror.

Anyway, one fateful day I was out Samantha-stalking. I was following her up to the local shops when I noticed something odd. Her feet – her feet are very noticeable, you know, little with long, deformed toes – doubling back around from in front of me. A few seconds later, when I looked back, there she was, walking behind me, a determined look in those huge green eyes. So I stopped and waited at a bus stop, twiddling my thumbs and doing my best to look bored so that she'd walk on by. Sure, Sammy was cute, but you can only have one stalker in a relationship. Otherwise things are just too freaky.

Apparently, I failed in my attempt to look bored, because she stopped right next to me. "What are you doing?" She stared at me when I didn't answer. "Seriously."

"What are you doing?" I returned, when it seemed a disdainful silence was not really an option.

She crossed her arms and shook out her long hair, giving that delicate little cough she had the first day I'd met her in the library. "I asked first."

My eyes flashed. "I'm waiting for a bus."

"To where, Jonas?"

Damn she was good. She was asking just the right questions to throw me off my game. Maybe one day, Sammy would become a barrister. I should probably keep on stalking her, knowing me, I'll need a barrister one day. The law is just so damn easy to break. "Somewhere where people aren't as nosy," I replied when I'd come up with something.

Samantha laughed. "Nosy? Look who's talking about being nosy. The boy with the biggest nose in the world."

"I have Italian heritage," I managed through gritted teeth. Samantha's comment was below the belt, and she'd hit my weak spot. Remember how before I said that I didn't think I looked anything like Edward Cullen? Well you've probably noticed that I'm no Adonis anyway, sir. You probably also remember how I said my nose was nicely shaped. Yeah, you might have noticed by now, I lied. Anyway, I think my nose is the reason why I'm not great looking. Without it -- actually, with a smaller version of it because how creepy would it be to have no nose? -- girls would swoon for me. I swear.

"Sure you do," Samantha teased. She was being unfair, because I really did have Italian heritage. My grandpa was Italian and he was in the mafia. Relax, sir, I'm kidding. He wasn't in the mafia. Or was he? Remember, I said I'd never tell you anything you could use to hook up with Ms Tremaine. I'm laughing at you right now.

"Look," I snapped back at Samantha, "at least I'm not a stalker."

She folded her arms once more and fixed me with an icy look. Her voice, usually so calm and cool, quivered as she spoke, "What the hell is that supposed to mean?"

It looked like I'd touched a nerve. I smiled, triumphant and then hammered my victory home. "Oh," I said, sticking my hands into my pockets, "you know, I saw you following me just then and a couple times before."

"Why would I stalk you?" She snapped.

I grinned, realising that I was making her mad and taking satisfaction in that. Shrugging, I replied, "I wouldn't know, all I know is that you are stalking me." No need to tell her I was stalking her too.

She stood there, staring at me for a second. Then, before I could react her fist connected with my face. It didn't hurt very much – Samantha's a girl alright, her right hook couldn't hurt a fly – but her audacity shocked me sir. I think that was the first time I realised that Samantha might be something more than a summer fling. She was gutsy enough to punch me, and that, Mr Ludan, that was awesome.

"Oh my God," Samantha gushed as I straightened up, smiling. "Are you okay? I didn't mean to –" Her face had flushed cherry red so that, with her huge green eyes, she reminded me of a Christmas tree. And it's impossible to get mad with someone who looks like a Christmas tree.

I laughed it off. "Don't worry about it. What are a couple of punches between friends?"

"We're friends?" She asked, looking confused. She had a point too. This? Her stalking me and the punching me at the local bus stop? Well, it doesn't really resemble any traditional friendship I've ever seen. Maybe they edited out a scene from Harry Potter where Hermione punched Harry in the face?

"Why not be friends," I said with a shrug, "we are on facebook."

She sniggered as I stared at her tiny fist. It was still clenched and, to tell the truth, it was kind of sexy. Maybe that's why Hermione never punched Harry, their relationship was, strictly speaking, platonic. Anyway, I like it when girls punch me. Damn, maybe Ms Tremaine is right. Maybe I am screwed up.