A/N: This is the basic format for the story:
*More information at end of story.
I sat on my bed, drinking a can of soda, and vibing to "You Never Know" by Immortal Technique. I drifted away lazily until I heard the doorbell ring.
I got out of bed to open the door.
"Danny? What are you doing here?"
"I wanted to talk, remember."
"Oh, I sorta thought you meant, like, over the phone. But come in, hold on a sec."
I went over to the refrigerator and grabbed another can of soda.
"Here," I said giving to her. "What's up?"
She was hesitating. She looked down at the floor for some time, her can of soda remaining untouched.
"What is it?"
"I had a question."
She took a deep breath. She opened her can of soda and took a sip.
"How do you know if a guy likes you?"
"What? Is that what you wanted to ask? That's not what you meant, right?"
"No, there's a lot more on my mind, but I just wanted to ask."
"What for? You like someone, don't you?"
"I met him in Grand Springs."
"A-ha! So, who is he?"
"Th-that's none of your business. Please, just answer the question."
This is the first time I had really seen her flustered. She was blushing, which for Danny was an alien sight, at least when it came to romance. I had assumed she had already had a boyfriend, either current or ex.
"Well, usually, if a guy is interested, he'll just go for it."
She brought up a good point. I had yet to approach Amy about my feelings.
"I guess I'm just different. Well, actually there are a lot of people like me, but you know what I mean."
"Well, that's not very helpful. He doesn't even seem interested in me."
"Well, there are other ways to get someone's attention. Did he spend any time around you?"
"A lot, actually. But, he was a friend, so I don't know if that counts."
"Do you think there might've been chemistry?" I asked her.
"I don't know. This is the first time I'm feeling like this."
"Well, it's not like you can go up to him and ask. But you probably have his phone number, right?"
"It's not that simple."
"What do you mean?" I asked.
"Nothing. Forget about it. I should've just kept my mouth shut."
"What are you talking about?"
She whispered something under her breath.
"Nevermind," she said. "Let's just hang out today, ok?"
"I guess. I don't really have anything else to do."
We played games for a while, and then my phone rang.
The top of the screen read Amy.
"Hello," I answered. Danny paused our match.
"Chris," she said.
"Just wanted to say hi." There were several sounds in the background, and her voice wavered a bit, suggesting she was splitting her attention between the phone call and something else. She seemed to be muttering something to herself.
"Are you alright?" I asked her.
"Huh? Oh, just fine. I'm just trying to check something."
She muttered something else. From what I understood, she seemed to be reading out numbers. I wondered if she was doing some sort of puzzle. It wasn't Sudoku, at least, since she seemed to be saying numbers like 15 and 20.
"Did you need me to call back?" I asked.
"No, I just, hold on a second. I think I'll go with this one."
I heard the sounds metal clanking in the background, and deduced she must be at a store. She must have been reading out prices.
"Sorry," she said. "I was just picking out your present."
"My present?" I noticed Danny perked up, but continued to stare at the motionless screen.
"Yeah," Amy continued. "You know, for your birthday."
"You didn't have to get me anything."
"I wanted to. I mean, we are friends, aren't we?"
"That makes sense, but-"
"Then it's fine. Don't worry about it. It's not like I can't afford to get you something. Anyway, what are you doing?"
"Just hanging out with Danny. You know, funny story, but-"
Danny gave me a look. I realized I probably shouldn't mention our conversation. Danny tended to keep things like that secret to anyone who wasn't her family or my family.
"Nevermind. I was giving her some advice, though."
"Oh. Hey, listen. I got something to tell you."
"What is it?"
"I'll save it for when I see you."
"Ok, then, I guess."
"Anyway, I got to go. I'm almost at the checkout."
She hung up before I could finish my protest. I mentally shrugged, and went to pick up my controller.
"What was that about?" Danny asked. Normally, it wasn't like her to ask about my conversations. Maybe she was interested because she knew it someone I liked? I teased her about someone she liked just a few moments ago.
"She's buying a present for me."
Almost imperceptibly, Danny seemed to relax her body more. She simply dropped the subject there.
I wondered if I was somehow making them feel uncomfortable. Both Danny and Amy seemed to be acting weird lately. For Amy, at least, it seemed understandable. She was shopping for a birthday present, and seemed preoccupied with schoolwork and other things.
But Danny? She definitely had something on her mind, and she seemed adamant about keeping it secret.