Manuka honey: made from bees that feed from the manuka bush (otherwise known as Tea tree, or by its Latin name, leptospermum scoparium), manuka honey is known for its unique healing properties. The honey has been known to be effective against MRSA; in addition, the honey can be used to help heal stomach ulcers, pressure sores, skin ulcers, boils, minor burns, and sore throats.

I learnt all of this while I was researching manuka honey. Why was I researching this type of honey? Well, I'd heard it was very good when it came to sore throats and colds and infections of that sort. Basically, the sort of infections that had been plaguing me for months.

I was the sort of girl who came down with a cough every few weeks, who constantly had a bad chest or a blocked nose. Nasal sprays of various brands were a common feature in my handbag whenever I went out at weekends, and my packs of Strepsils could be found dotted all over my home. I constantly spoke with a rather nasal edge to my voice. When pollen counts begin to rise, I get hay fever, and it all seems to get a hundred times worse. I'd taken all kinds of medicine and treatments, but nothing seemed to be able to rid me of this persistent infection, and I was getting quite weary of it.

And then my dad read this article in a newspaper about manuka honey. At first, I wasn't pleased, or eager. Honey, you see, was something of a food nemesis for me. I hate it when I get a honey sweet in a box of chocolates. The taste of honey makes me gag: it's the smell of it, for me, which lingers in your mouth long after swallowing. And that smell, to me, is piss. Don't ask me why. No one else seems to agree, but to my nose, it just stinks of pee.

I put it off for weeks and weeks, this new "remedy". But my father is a stubborn man, and he practically forced me to go online and look up manuka honey. I did, and that's basically what I learnt. The honey clearly had very good healing properties, and despite my dislike of the urine-scented fluid, I knew it could be my best bet of ridding myself of this bad cold. What spurred me into action was my father's description of bacteria in my throat. I won't go into detail, but the word burrowing was used, and it was enough to turn my stomach. So that same evening, I asked my dad if I could go with him to the local supermarket so I could buy myself a jar of this wonder honey. I even put on hold my revision for a science exam the next morning to do this.

So, at around half-seven on a Thursday evening, I was wandering around my local supermarket, trying to locate the aisle were they sold honey. I try to avoid supermarket shopping whenever I can, and seeing as I had a dislike for honey and therefore no need to buy it, I had absolutely no idea where to look. I eventually located it on the same aisle as the jams and marmalades and things such as that. And then I had to hunt down manuka. The supermarket only sold two types of manuka honey. One was completely sold out. The other had one, large glass jar left. I reached out for it eagerly, and my hands closed around the container.

Only, I wasn't the only person trying to buy manuka honey, it seemed. Just as my fingers curled around the jar, so did someone else's. This hand was slightly bigger, and looked ever so slightly more masculine in appearance. It was attached to a tanned arm with a leather band fastened around the wrist. For a few moments, I just stared at the hand that had closed over mine, and then I looked up.

The hand belonged to a boy who looked to be about the same age as me: taller, quite slender but with broad shoulders and messy blonde hair. He had one pierced ear – a gold stud, I noticed – and he had very dark eyes. I knew that if he went to my school, he'd probably be one of the cool kids. The sort that everyone, and I mean everyone knew the name of (and yet he knew no one's name). The sort that still managed to be in the top classes for everything. You know the type.

"Um," was all I seemed able to say. He raised one eyebrow.

"I really need this honey," he told me. "It's kind of urgent."

"Well," I responded, "I also need this honey. It's also kind of urgent that I get this honey." I glared at him, and he scowled back in response. Neither of us moved our hands an inch.

"Go find another brand," he snapped. My glare turned withering.

"I would, if this shop sold any other brands that weren't sold out." I rolled my eyes, and muttered under my breath, "Idiot." His handed clenched slightly. I knew he wasn't going to give up anytime soon.

"Look," I sighed, "I've been suffering from this really bad infection for like, six months or something, and –" At that moment, my body decided it was going to seize up as I coughed. I kept my hand firmly on the jar and used my other hand to cover my mouth. The boy jerked backwards as this happened. Clearly, he didn't want to be infected with the six months cold or whatever. Which was, you know, completely understandable. When I recovered, I finished by telling him, "I've tried every kind of medicine out there, and nothing works properly. Manuka honey is my last and only chance. You wouldn't deprive a girl of that chance, now, would you?"

He shook his head. "You've done well for about six months without the honey," he pointed out. "One more night won't make a difference. Besides, my mum's currently rolling around in bed with the flu. She can barely talk. I think she needs this honey more than you do."

All I could think was: damn him. He was right. I couldn't really argue. But I mentioned earlier that my father was a stubborn man, and I inherited his stubbornness. As far as I was concerned, my hand had touched that jar first. That meant that the honey was mine to buy. This idiot had no rights to this jar of manuka honey. None at all.

So...I dragged the jar off the shelf and tugged my hand fiercely away from his before taking off down the aisle at a brisk trot. I don't know what I thought was going to happen. Maybe that apricot jam would distract him, or that he just couldn't be bothered running after me. Naturally, he did neither of those things. Instead, he chased me down that aisle, down the tinned foods aisle, into the magazine aisle, before I headed into the fresh produce section. It was here he caught up with me, wrapping one arm around my waist and the other over my shoulders so he could attempt to prize my fingers off the jam jar.

I shrieked, angrily. "Get off me!" I cried, trying to drive my elbow into his stomach. I hugged the jar to my chest, stomped on his foot and tried to make a run for it. I needed to find my dad, my dad, my –

He dashed in front of me, blocking my entrance between two stalls, one selling apples, the other onions. He stretched his arms out.

"Just give me the honey," he pleaded, "My mum's really, really not well. We've used this stuff before, it works really well..."

I backed way. "Nuh-uh," I replied, shaking my head. By this point, I didn't even want the honey myself. Hell, I never wanted the stuff in the first place. But I didn't want him to have it either. I'm like that sometimes.

And he rolled his eyes, and grabbed hold of my waist again with one hand and tugged me towards him; his free hand reached up to grab at the jar of honey. By this time, we'd gathered quite a crowd. Amidst the tussle, I'd scanned the crowd and I couldn't see my father. I cursed under my breath and tried to stamp on the boy's foot.

"Oh for God's sake – just give – me – the – bloody – honey –" he began to growl in my ear. He was stood behind me now, and we were in quite an awkward position – our legs were intertwined, as were our arms, but I had the honey tucked under one of my arms. If one of us moved our legs, we'd both go toppling to the ground.

"No," I snapped in response. "I got to the bloody honey first, you idiot –"

"You don't even sound like you need the honey." That was when I attempted to elbow him in the stomach, and the jar of honey slipped from under my arm and fell to the floor. On its way down, it landed on the boy's foot, bounced off it, before hitting the floor and cracking.

That was when things went from bad to worse, I suppose. When the jar hit his foot, he naturally reacted out of pain, and jumped; I stumbled forwards, and so did he, our feet tripping over each other, and then he slipped on the sticky honey, which had seeped from the cracks in the glass jar. We both collapsed onto the ground.

He hit the linoleum first, and I went down after him, landing awkwardly on my side. My elbow drove into his chest, knocking the wind out of him, before we lay there for a few moments in silence.

"If you'd just given me the effing honey..." he said in a low voice, raising his head slightly off the ground to look at me with slightly annoyed brown eyes.

"If you'd just given me the effing honey!" I repeated him indignantly, propping myself up on my hands so I was lying over his body. We both glared at each other, before a cough interrupted our staring contest.

A young girl stood over us, one eyebrow raised. She looked rather nervous. A name-badge pinned to the front of her maroon apron identified her as being CLAIRE. "Um," she said, "You've kind of upset some of our shoppers?"

This boy and myself just looked at her, then we looked at each other and burst out laughing. It wasn't really funny, I knew, but there was just something in her manner – she just looked so concerned, probably that one of us was going to hit her, or something, or start demanding that she run off to find us some more honey. Eventually, I climbed off him, and offered a hand to help him get up. We stood aside as another woman – a cleaner, I assumed – came over to clean up the honey.

That was when my dad finally made an appearance, and so did the boy's stepfather. And we tried to explain to them – our fight over the honey, my dropping of the honey, and how we both fell over. We both got a good telling off. My dad had to pay for the honey, and we had to make a pretty sharp exit. Claire told us that if we came back tomorrow, they should have restocked and there would be some more honey. She told us it was quite a popular choice, for some reason.

She also told us that there was another brand of manuka honey sold in the health and medicine section, which had a higher health rating. Or something along those lines. It was much more expensive, though, but basically, the whole fight could have been avoided if...If we'd looked in a completely different aisle. But honestly - the health and medicine aisle? It was honey! Admittedly, honey with really high healing properties, but still...

As we left the store, the boy and me turned to look at each other. "Um, I'm sorry," he tried. "I probably shouldn't have grabbed you."

"It's okay," I said, pulling on my hair. "I probably shouldn't have stood on your foot, or been so awkward about the honey..." He didn't disagree with me on that one.

"So." He stuffed his hands in his pocket and took a step backwards. He rewarded me with a tiny, albeit awkward, smile. "Maybe I'll see you tomorrow?" he suggested. "In the health aisle? I promise I won't try and rugby tackle you."

"Maybe," I agreed. "See you around..."

I turned and began to walk away, fiddling with the hem of my jacket. I was nearly at my father's car when I heard him shout across the carpark, which was quite quiet at that moment in time.

"See you tomorrow, Manuka!" I looked over my shoulder. He was still stood outside the store, and he waved at me.

I waved back, turned around, and smiled. Honey wasn't so bad, I decided.