It was day 4 of the festival and I was back on my feet again. Being stuck in bed for two days wasn't the best feeling in the world…especially when you could hear the fun chaos outside. Since I wasn't part of any school organization, I decided to help out in one booth instead of just being idle. Robin, another classmate, was part of the Math Wizards and their booth was just beside the Cookery Club's restaurant so I volunteered to become part of it. Robin was the quirkiest in our class. Good thing he has good Math grades (and good looks) or else people would never take him seriously. We were good friends; he was one of those who stood up for me when my old picture got "publicized". He was a natural comedian. He never failed to make me laugh whenever he says something. Anyway, their booth was named "Slave For You". It was a game and it goes like this: the player will pick a math question from a glass bowl and on the wall are taped balloons where answers were painted on. Then the player would have to pop the balloon of his answer by using a dart. If the gamer loses, he will have to pay an amount of money (after all, this was a kind fund-raising event for the organizations) but if he wins, he'll pick another tiny paper from a different bowl where our names were written. The person he picks will be his slave for the whole day. Sounds fun but on my part, being a slave was the least thing I wanted to be.
"Bri! Can you please pass the balloons?" Robin cheerfully asked me. He smiled after I handed the box of balloons to him. He was pumping the balloons with so much energy that he ended up popping one.
"Rooobiiin! What the hell are you doing?!" Ironically, Robin-the-wacky was best friends with Kolie, a girl from another class—and have I mentioned she was a black belter in karate? It was ironic because their personalities were on opposite sides of the world. Robin may be a guy but he was a softie. On the other hand, Kolie is a girl but that girl could kick some ass…and very hot tempered, but only towards Robin. To everybody else, she was actually a sweet girl. They tell everyone they were just best friends but I know there's something more between them. Everybody does. It's just they both keep on denying their emotions from each other. Probably it was really true that opposites attract each other.
Kolie smacked Robin on the head.
"Sorry!" He scratched his head and shielded his face with his other hand.
Even I thought the slap was hard! But I laughed. I've always thought those two were cute.
"Woah. Easy K!" I was laughing at the two of them.
Kolie inhaled deeply and shifted her direction to me.
"Sorry, was I too harsh?" She was also laughing. But rolled her eyes to the poor guy beside her.
"Yes you were! Your hands were like made of steel you know!" Robin hissed at her.
"Shut up! And just continue with the balloons!" She looked annoyed but I was sure she was just acting like that towards him.
Robin made a face to her and she pulled out her tongue. They were too cute.
"So, how's your leg?" She was back to being sweet.
"Oh, better than good." I smiled at her.
"Wait, is that Wayne? WAYNE!" She jumped off her seat and signaled her hand to the guy—who, obviously, was with Nick.
They made their way to us.
"You still haven't played our game! Please try it oouutt." Kolie tried her best to convince the two. Nick was just quiet—as usual.
"Uhmm. Oh, Bri you're here too?" Wayne was obviously not interested in playing their game.
"Yeah. Volunteering since I didn't have to do anything anyway." I smiled.
"What's this about?" Oh, I didn't know Nick would consider such.
Kolie started explaining what the mechanics of the game were. Then out of nowhere, Robin came into the scenario. He was standing between Kolie and me.
"Ready to take the challenge?" He raised one eyebrow. His tone was mixed with provocation.
"Or you aren't in good terms with Math?" He smirked. He was challenging Nick. I knew it. Just like he never failed to make me laugh, Robin never failed to annoy Nick with his sarcasm. He said it was refreshing to see a new expression on Nick's face so he purposely piss him off sometimes. I told you he was weird.
Wayne was just staring. I knew what he was thinking: this isn't good.
"Tss. And if we win?" Nick scoffed and rolled his eyes. Is he being serious?
"You get to pick one among us to be your slave for the rest of the day." Robin confidently replied. Then he placed his arm around my shoulder and squeezed it. Robin can be a bit clingy but everybody knows he's just naturally an intimate person. Again, I couldn't help but notice how Nick's eyes quickly shifted to the arm around my shoulder. I guess he's never a fan of intimate body languages. Kolie was already handing the registration paper and a pen to Nick. She had a grin on her face while Wayne and I were just standing there, watching the battle of testosterones between the two guys in front of us.
"Then I'll make you my slave." Nick dropped his bag and registered his name. Then he went to the end of the line. Wayne looked at me with his eyes bigger than usual and followed Nick.
Robin dropped his jaw and removed his arm off my shoulder.
"Did I annoy him that much? Oh man, I don't wanna be his slave," Robin whispered to me and squeezed my right arm with both of his hands. Sometimes, he acts like he's just 10.
"At least you made him join the game!" Kolie was trying not to laugh out loud.
"Briiii. Please pray that he won't win." Robin was squeezing my arm.
"Don't worry, it's not like it's so sure he'll pick your name." I removed my arm between his sweaty hands and patted him on the shoulder. It was so funny how the brave Robin just a minute ago was already nervously fidgeting beside me.
"Nick, you have to make 3 correct answers to win. You make a mistake once, you lose. Okay?" Kolie was holding out a glass bowl in front of him. He nodded. He picked one question and the timer started..5, 4, 3, pop. One correct answer.
"That was fast," I muttered to myself.
"THAT WAS FAST," Robin gripped my arm again, his palms were really sweaty.
Nick picked another question. 5, 4, 3, 2, pop. Two correct answers.
"Okay, Nick. One last correct answer for a win!" A Math Wizard member announced. He just scoffed. Like he wasn't even having a hard time. I saw some of the questions and to me they seemed like words written in Greek language or something. How does he answer so fast?
I could hear Robin mumbling to himself. He was really nervous. Well, even I don't want to be a slave!
For the third time, Nick picked a question sheet from the bowl.
"Oh, this one's hard. You're given 10 seconds to answer. Good luck." The timer started after Nick has finished reading the question. He was scribbling down on a small sheet of paper like it was his last. 7, 6, Robin has both his hands clasped now while Kolie's brows furrowed after looking at Nick's scratch paper. 4, 3, 2, 1 and a half, 1, pop. He made it before the timer beeped. And now we wait for the result if he popped the right balloon.
"Congratulations! You won! You can now pick from this bowl for your slave-for-the-day." Another club member happily held out the bowl to Nick. People were clapping their hands. Even Wayne was clapping.
Nick smirked and glared at the shaky guy beside me. Robin quickly hid behind me and placed both his hands on my shoulder. I squeezed them both. He was like 6.
"Go on now, pick one. It's your prize." Kolie grinned at him. She was probably trying really hard to keep her laughter. But seriously, I was also trying not to laugh at Robin.
Nick placed his hand inside the bowl and picked one paper. He opened it.
"Oh." He stiffened.
"Why?" Wayne placed his arm around his friend's shoulder and looked down at the tiny paper.
"Brr. What's this? Brr. Brianna?" Then both of them looked at me. I dropped my jaw.