Chapter 8: Valentines day

Over the course of the week, I found myself talking more. It was a strange thing, after being so harshly antisocial for so long, it was strange having someone to talk to, who wanted to talk to me.

Marshal and I never talked about anything serious, just whatever popped into his head at the time. I found myself looking forward to our conversations, I even started a few myself. Before I knew it valentines day came up, not that I cared. Marshal may have been able to infiltrate my antisocial life, but I still refused to take part it any sort of relationship, not that there had been many offers. Or really any for that matter.

Anyways, I sat down in European history and opened my book, starting on the day's bellwork. This was one of the things in my life that didn't change, I remained studious as ever, which was a good thing in my opinion.

Marshal plopped himself down beside me, seeming nervous. This was unusual for him, seeing as he has always been confident and outgoing, unafraid of his bizarre self. I let my mind linger on the source for a mere moment before returning to my ever-important studies.

As the bell rang for that class, we both walked out and went our separate ways

Later that day, lunch rolled around, just like usual, and as usual, Marshal appeared at my table first, sitting down with that same nervous air as I noticed before.

"So...uh...Markus...what plans you got for Valentines day?"

I looked up, a red light going off in the back of my mind, Kelly's words ringing in the back of my head: 'Are you gay?'. I shook it off and replied "same as always: nothing. How about you, Casanova, got a sweetheart?"

His answer surprised me. Despite having most of the girls in our school more than willing to have his children he still replied softly "Not yet, but I have someone in mind..."

I almost choked on my sandwich, this was intensely awkward "someone in mind?" I asked slowly, Kelly's voice echoing about my head.

Speak of the devil, at this point Kelly and Elsie sat down, apologizing for being late. I kind of wanted to jump on them for leaving me alone with Marshal. Fortunately I resisted this urge.

Lunch began to go on, as we talked about, well, nothing. I notice something that relieved me greatly, Marshal was eyeing Elsie. Marshal was not about to make my life complicated.

Lunch ended, and English flew by, followed by an expedient and uneventful woodshop. There was a satisfying silence as Marshal and I walked. Words weren't needed, I knew what he had to do, he knew what he had to do, and he knew I supported his choice all the way. Life is much better when your friends understand you.

We walked into seventh period, and the tension in the air was tangible. Everyone except Elsie and Marshal knew what was about to happen, and even then, they probably had a sneaking suspicion.

This tension carried on, as we all took our seats, and as Mr. Grover did his lecture over the eye, functions, muscles and all that. Personally I had no difficulty taking notes, but judging by all of the uncomfortable shifting I heard, not everyone had my ability to focus.

Mr. Grover finished his lecture in record time, giving out the assignment, before sitting down behind his desk and grading something or another. At this point the tension in the air was tangible, as people began to subtly scoot closer to the man of the hour.

An eternity seemed to pass until the two finally spoke "So...uh...Elsie...?" Marshal started awkwardly.

The girl looked up, her face already red "y-yeah?"

"I...uh...will...go...you...uh..." Marshal scratched his head.

I was shocked, of all things, Marshal was nervous about...girls? It shocked me, I expected him to be a regular Casanova.

I turned my attention to the two. This was painful to watch. Such an obvious connection, and neither could say anything. Idiots.

"Look, you both like each other, hurry up and confess, before someone dies of anticipation."As if to make my point, someonE who had been leaning in to hear fell out of their sweat with a loud thump, amplified by the tense silence.

Both parties turned a deeper shade of crimson, and Marshal Stutters "w-well okay then... Elsie, want to go out with me?"

Apparently all of this had been too much for Elsie, as she promptly turned an even brighter shade of crimson and passed out.