Catch Me When I Fall
"Oh, it's such a lovely day my pretties, why don't we embrace Mother Nature's sun and have the lesson outdoors? Hmm?" our form tutor, Miss Florence said to us, clapping her hands together.
Honestly, the woman was wacked up in the mind.
I'm not kidding.
Here in London there was no such thing as a 'sunny' winter's day. No such thing. Seriously, it was mid-December and Miss Florence wants us to embrace the sun? I had to bite my lip to point out to her that there was no sun. Last time I had done something like that I'd gotten two hours of detention time. Two hours! Miss Florence was hysterical; she had to call the Head of Year to calm her down! The class had thought it was hysterical; they loved me for it but mostly because they missed half of the lesson.
Silly children, no mind for their education! Tut.
"Yes Miss," we all drawled out packing our things away. We had gotten a warning from our Head of Year, Ms Smith, not to disagree or try to argue with Miss Florence about anything. Ms Smith was quite intimidating, so we just nodded our heads like the perfect children we were and groaned about it only after she left. She still managed to hear us…
"OK, do these people not realise that she is messed up in the mind?" my best friend Tessa whispered to me as we filed out of class and into the cold. "She shouldn't be left alone with kids!"
"They do. They just don't have the money to find a new teacher, so they're leaving us with a crack head. If this were America we could sue! This is a…a…" I struggled to find the right words to say, but to my displeasure, my favourite person in the world finished it off. I hope you noticed the sarcasm there.
"Infringement of our learning?" Fredrick Tyson asked slinging his arms around Tessa and me. I opened and closed my mouth. He made me so mad that I was at a loss of words. He was so infuriating at times it made me want to slap him silly, but at other times he could be so charming my heart would beat erratically. One minute I hate him, the next I love him! It was true; there was a fine line between love and hate. This however was one of the moments I wanted to slap him silly.
"Aw Lena, are you so amazed by my looks you're at a loss for words?" he asked me innocently.
Not by your looks I'm not…well maybe a little…OK a lot.
Tessa giggled. I was amazed to find that Tess actually liked Fred, just as a friend, not like the rest of the dumbstruck girls in our school. I mean it's one thing to have a small crush on him, like I did, but it was another thing to go prancing around with low hanging tops and skirts that were a few inches above tarty.
"Oh yes Fredrick, what other reason could I possibly have?" I asked him sarcastically shrugging his arm off my shoulder, ignoring the thumping of my heart and pushing the doors open. The rest of the class was already there. I zipped up my hoodie and cursed our school for making skirts compulsory for girls to wear. They were knee-length, but still, it was freezing!
"Right!" Miss Florence beamed, clapping her hands. "Now that we're all here let's play a little game! Now this is your last year together before you all go off to different colleges, or before you come back to sixth form. So we're going to have a little trust exercise!" I looked at her deadpanned.
Was she being serious?
"Um, Miss, aren't we supposed to have trust exercises when we, I don't know, meet each other for the first time?" someone brave asked her. For a moment she looked as though she was about to kill her person, Lucy Wu, who dared question her. That look passed quickly.
"Oh Miss Wu!" she said brightly, though her smile seemed a little tight. I noticed that those that were near her eased away slightly. "My dear, dear, child, it will be fun! Stop being so melodramatic!"
Melodramatic? Lucy Wu? Yeah right.
"Is it me or does Miss Florence seem a little more eccentric than usual?" Tessa asked me from my left. I gave her a look which sent us into fits of giggles which we styled out as coughs.
"Is it any wonder why she's still a 'Miss'?" Fred's voiced filled my ear from the right. I bit my lip to prevent the smile that was threatening to break through. His breath hit the side of my neck which made me shiver a little. I styled this out by pulling the sleeves of my Hoodie to cover my hands. My insides were churning. It was a good thing it was freezing outside, my hands were all sweaty and I was hot as anything. Well, I would've been as 'hot as anything' if it wasn't cold.
"Urgh," I groaned as the wind swept my hair around my face. I must have been crazy to have kept my hair out that day. My brown waist length hair was the one thing I was truly proud of myself. I needn't bother with a straightner or anti-frizz products because my hair was dead straight without the use of those.
Damn hair, so boring.
I saw a hair tie appear in front of my face. Tessa had taken one of her pigtails out. I took it with a grateful smile and tied up my hair, while she put her hair into a ponytail. I saw Tessa cocking her head and starring at someone past me. I followed her gaze and Fred came into my line of view. He was gazing intently at my hair, his brows creased. I touched my hair and he broke out of his trance.
"What?" I asked him suspiciously. He looked at me and opened his mouth to say something but Miss Florence cut him off. I drowned her out but Fred mouthed 'later' to me. I shrugged.
"…OK, so get into partners with someone other than your closest, bestest, palliest friends!" Miss Florence giggled slightly and jumped about. She shooed us to get into pairs.
Tess and I looked at each other and sighed. Tessa went off looking for a partner while I scanned the people that were standing alone. Janie Hayes popped out of nowhere.
"Hi there!" she said in her thick Australian accent. "Wanna' be partners?" I opened my mouth to accept but someone cut me off.
"Sorry Janie, she's with me, you don't mind do you?" Fred asked her flashing his white teeth at her. "Do you?" he asked again a little huskier. Janie was gone off to gaga land the minute he said her name. There was no need for the last bit he added. It was just an ego boost, most definitely.
Once she was out of earshot I glared at Fred who was grinning at me. "You are mean! She wanted to work with me and I didn't even agree to work with you!"
"But Janie didn't mind."
"Yeah that's because you seduced her with those eyes of yours," I replied with narrowed eyes. His eyes were gorgeous. They were so green, the first time I met him I demanded he take out his contacts. He of course had none one so just poked his eyes and said, 'oops no contacts, sorry'. This caused him to get a red eye, but me laughing so much my sides were aching.
"Well I have to admit they are pretty amazing," he said shrugging. Ego boost, I thought. I bit back a retort and luckily Miss Florence spoke up.
"Okey doke folks! Label yourselves 'ay' and 'bee'."
"You're ay," I said to him before he could even open his mouth. He just shrugged saying an incoherent reply.
"OK, if you're an 'ay' stand in front of your partner. All you're going to do is fall back and let your partner, 'bee' catch you. Simple enough!" she said brightly. "OK, three..."
"You better catch me love." I held my tongue with my arms stretched ready to catch him.
"This is your chance to feel me up," he said.
"OW!" Fred cried out as he hit the floor.
I let him fall. Oops? He was being a pain in the arse and now it was his turn to literally have a pain in the arse. Hehe! I looked around and the rest of the group had done fine and were actually enjoying them. A couple noticed Fred on the floor.
"You didn't catch me!" Fred said standing up and pointing a finger at me. "That was mean!"
"Oh, Lena! You didn't catch Fred!" Miss Florence pointed out.
"He was too heavy," I said dryly. Miss Florence had already gone off so I aimed my answer at Fred. "I'm sorry I didn't catch you. You would've crushed me with your big self!"
"So you agree, I'm big?" he asked me wagging his eyebrows. I groaned. Apparently that fall didn't affect him too much.
"Why me?" I muttered looking up at the cloudy sky.
"OK, b's you're next! Let your partner catch you!" Miss Florence called out. There was shuffling as everyone swapped places. I swallowed nervously. I didn't actually think that one through. Fred was going to drop me!
"Hmm…I wonder what you'd look like with grass on your hair…" Fred whispered into my ear.
"Don't you dare drop me!" I hissed.
"OK, ready? Three…"
"Don't you dare!" I said nervously with slight venom in my voice.
I closed my eyes and dropped back. Instead of feeling the thud of the ground, I felt two warm, muscular arms grip onto me. I opened my eyes as the arms steadied me back onto my feet. I whirled around to face him as I did so his arms left my body and I felt a slight tingle. I actually, sort of, missed the warmth it brought. I dismissed this. I crossed my arms and looked at him in disbelief.
"You didn't let me fall," I stated in surprise.
"Why not?" I demanded. He smirked slightly and took a step towards me.
"Because, I'll never let you fall," he whispered pulling me by the waist towards him. "Fall freely, and I'll catch you."
"What?" I breathed out wondering whether I was actually hearing this. My heart was hammering, my breath was quick and sharp. He looked a little flustered in the face.
Then again, I had piled on a couple of pounds during my birthday…
"You heard me. Fall. In love. With me. Fall, and I'll catch you. I love you." I didn't get a chance to reply to anything he said - mind you I'd probably have said something stupid – because he kissed me. It was short and sweet. I could feel the coolness of his lips meet mine. Even though the temperature outside was in its minus', his lips brought me such warmth my toes curled. We pulled away, his arms was still around my waist. For a moment I just stared up at him not knowing what to say. His eyes were clouded and I could tell mine were too.
"I…I…" The bell rang. It was like they said, saved by the bell. "I gotta go. Next class and all."
I picked up my bag from the fall and almost ran to my class. I ignored the disbelief looks on my classmate's faces. Or on my best friend's face but she was grinning madly afterwards.
I tried to remove the dejected look on Fred's face. I really didn't want to be one of those cliché girls who ran from true love but it's not until you experience that moment that you realise that running away at the time is the only thing logical. Well to me anyway.
I stayed, well hid, in the library for the rest of the day. I didn't want to see anybody. I only missed two lessons anyway.
By the end of the day I had sorted out my mind, and I knew what I was going to tell Fred the next time I saw him. I was ready. I would either reject him or accept him. I walked to my locker and realised that it was the end of the day and it was possible that he might've gone home by then.
Grabbing my last book I slammed my locker door shut. I weaved in and out of the crowds of people that were rushing home. I wanted to find Tessa and tell her what I was going to do before I did it, but she was nowhere in sight.
I ran to where Fred's locker was. It was only in the next corridor. I pushed the door open and ran straight into something solid. I closed my eyes to feel the impact of the floor, but I was, again, held by two arms. I opened my eyes and found Fred starring down at me.
"Told you I wouldn't let you fall," he said smiling slightly, almost hopefully. I looked up at him for a moment, he was still holding me, my hair trailing the floor, my head inches from the ground.
His smiled started to fade, but my grin started appearing. I pulled his head down and slammed my lips onto his. I could feel Fred smile. He pulled me up and responded just as eagerly as me. His one hand found its way to my hair and he pulled the hair tie I still had on.
"I like your hair out. I was going to say that before," he said before pulling my lips back onto his. We were like this for a few moments before I pulled back.
"You can catch me now if you want." Fred replied with a grin and he pulled me back to him. I wrapped my arms around his neck, sealing the deal.
He was going to catch me when I fell.
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