"Dude, Picard over Kirk, any day!"
"But original series over next generation?"
"Deal." I watch as Michael and Doug shake hands and give each other a serious nod as if they have just settled the world's greatest debate. I chuckle slightly under my breath, shaking my head, but actually agreeing with what they have decided on.
I close my locker after putting my books away, before heading for the cafeteria, and push my glasses further up my nose. I turn, glancing down the hallway, and the sound of aimless chatter from my fellow students disappears. Because I see her.
She's walking down the hallway alone, her Biology textbook in her left hand. She's looking down at the floor, her sometimes-green-sometimes-grey-sometimes-blue eyes surrounded by a layer of eyeliner. Her faded jeans cling to her perfect figure and her vintage biker jacket hangs loosely from her shoulders. As I watched, someone calls her name and she looks up, allowing me a glimpse of her pretty face when it's not shielded by her perfectly tousled dark hair. I've known her since kindergarten. Most people think she's dyed it because her skin is so pale. But I know it's her natural colour.
She smiles at the person and waves timidly. She continues down the hall and I can't stop staring at her. She feels my eyes on her and looks sideways as she passes. She throws me a friendly smile and continues to her locker, my eyes trailing after her. I hear snickers beside me.
"Dude!" Michael laughs, bringing his hand down on my shoulder, snapping me out of my daze. I hate how Mike always says 'dude'. He thinks it makes him cool. It doesn't. "You've been in love with Emma since, like, kindergarten! What is your problem?" He laughs some more.
"Yeah, James," Doug continues for him. "Don't you think you should maybe, I don't know, go for it or move on?" The both look at me expectantly. I push my glasses up my nose – a nervous habit.
"Can't you let me just continue as I am?" I ask, pushing off from my locker and starting towards the cafeteria. "I mean, there's nothing wrong with liking someone from afar," I say quietly. They exchange a look. "Is there?"
"Dude, it's unhealthy when it's been this long! Just talk to her," Mike says rolling his eyes. We pass by Emma again while she's standing at her locker.
"I do talk to her," I whisper harshly, not being able to stop myself from looking at her perfect ass in her tight jeans. Both Doug and Mike notice the distant air to my voice and the direction of my gaze. Doug laughs while Mike sighs. "Hey, Emma!" he shouts out before I can stop him.
"No! What are you-" I stop as she looks around, with an adorably confused look on her face, and try to act nonchalant. I know the blush on my cheeks is totally giving me away though. She lifts a wary had to wave back at Mike, not quite understanding what just happened. I didn't blame her.
I turn to him, mortified, as we make it past her locker. Mike has a shit-eating grin on his face, and Doug looks about ready to wet himself from trying to contain his laughter. I hit him on the arm, hard.
"Hey!" He holds up his hands. "I did nothing; I'm just an innocent bystander in this," he says, still chuckling slightly. I slap a hand to my forehead as we walk into the cafeteria.
"How can you say that?" I yell at Doug and Mike across the lunch table. "Ocarina of Time was way better than Wind Waker!" I'd been persuaded to forget about the 'Emma Incident' by having to defend my favourite Zelda game.
"No, I still stand with Wind Waker. The plot, dude, the plot!" He leans across the table, slapping his hands down dramatically. I sigh in frustration – I do that a lot when I'm around Michael.
"Are you kidding me?" I hear a girl's voice say to my left. I tense slightly. I'd recognise that voice anywhere. I look up and see Emma standing there, holding her lunch tray and giving Mike and Doug and incredulous look. "Ocarina of Time is a freakin' classic! It wins. Every time."
All three of us sit there in shock for a moment, our mouths all slightly agape. Emma looks down at me, winks – she winked – at me and then carries on to sit at an empty table not too far from ours. I swear I blushed from my neck to my roots.
"Dude," Mike starts, still in shock. "But… but she's a girl. And she plays… Zelda?" I lean around him to look at Emma. She has proceeded to sit down and picks up… a comic book. I push up my glasses and lean closer. It's the Detective Comics #27. Otherwise know as the first appearance of Batman.
"I think I just fell a bit more in love with this girl," I stammer out in a daze. I hear Doug snort.
"Now that I didn't think was possible."
I sit down in sixth period Math and twist my hands nervously. Emma sits at the desk to the right of me. It was time. Now or never, I keep telling myself. After what I happened at lunch, I needed to tell her. She's, like, my dream girl. I laugh at my own cliché-ness and shake my head.
"Laughing at your own jokes again, James," she says, grinning as she throws her bag down on the floor and removes her jacket, flinging it over the back of her chair, before sitting down and leaning towards me slightly. She smelt like… orange juice? I have never wanted orange juice more than in this moment.
"Yeah, something like that," I chuckle, pushing my glasses up my nose.
"You do that a lot," she says suddenly, staring intently at my face. I blush under her intense gaze and fidget around in my seat slightly.
"Do what?" I ask.
"Push your glasses up your nose. Mostly when you're nervous," she replies, adding a sly smile at the end. "Are you nervous right now, James?" she teases, sticking her tongue out between her teeth. I choose not to answer and just smile softly at her. She returns it.
"So… Ocarina of Time?" I ask, giving her a sceptical glance. It's her turn to blush as she laughs nervously.
"Yeah," she responds, drawing out the word slightly. "Kind of a closet gamer," she laughs, shrugging at me in a 'what can you do' way. I grin at her this time.
"And that's a bad thing because…?" I trail off, still grinning. She looks at me with warm eyes.
"I never said it was."
I didn't want the bell to ring at the end of class. I didn't want to go home and not have her sitting to the side of me. She looks back at me as she gets up to leave, giving me a small wave. I tilt my head up in a nod of acknowledgment. She hovers, as if she's waiting for me to say something. I stay silent, willing my lips to move but knowing, ultimately, that I won't be able to make them. A sad smile crosses her face as she turns and walks away. I watch the back of her head until it's completely disappeared from my view. I let my head drop, heavily, to the wooden desk top.
"Man up," I whisper furiously to myself before snapping my head up and looking, determinedly towards the door. I yank my bag from the back of my chair, getting it stuck in my haste and stumbling back a few steps. I spend a couple of seconds wrestling with the chair for ownership of my bag before the strap finally comes loose. I rush out of the door, catching a glimpse of the amused smile on my teachers face.
I burst into the hallway, looking around; like in one of those teen movies where the camera is in the point of view of the drugged girl, trying to find out which way to go or where she is. The students are passing by in an uncontrolled blur. Then I spot her dark hair.
"Emma!" I call, over the insanely loud, aimless chatter of every other student in the school. "Emma!" I rush forwards, tripping over everything possible. "Emma!"
She catches my voice and turns round expectantly. At that moment, I burst through the crowd, propelling myself forwards. I flail to stop myself from falling into her, possibly knocking her to the floor. She raises her hands, as if to catch me, as I balance on tiptoes in front of her.
"Err, hi?" she says, obviously amused by my little performance. I grin, looking up at her from over my glasses and under my hair, my hands resting on my thighs as I pause for breath.
"Hi," I reply, breathlessly. "I… I… just wanted… to catch you… before you left," I finally manage to pant out between gasps of air.
"O…kay," she responds nervously but giving me a beautiful smile, none the less.
"I was… erm… just wondering if maybe, you know, you'd like to go out with me on Saturday night? Like, a date?" I stutter, all of my nerves finally getting the better of me.
But the gleaming smile she flashes at me is enough to disintegrate all of them for good.
"You know, James, I thought you'd never ask." My mouth drops slightly. "Seven?" I nod, speechless. She blushes slightly and turns away, still smiling brightly.
I stand, frozen, for what seems like forever, watching her leave the building.
"Dude, what is up with you? Finally get up the nerve to ask Emma out?" Mike jokes, coming up from behind me and slapping his hand down on my shoulder.
"Something like that," I respond smugly. Mike continues laughing, not fully registering what I've just said. He walks about five paces in front of me before stopping in his tracks. He turns back around, slowly.
So there's a thing... Yep. Hope you enjoyed the little thing that just sort of came out of my brain :P I guess it was kind of inspired by 'Geeks Get The Girls' by American Hi-Fi. You should go and listen to them, they're good :D
Holding A Heart