I got home much later than I usually did, strolling in as the other girls were on the living room floor doing yoga. I rolled my eyes and climbed over them before throwing myself down on the couch with a grunt. I watched them stretch themselves into some awkward position before snorting.
“You look like you’re about to shit yourself.”
Both the girls looked up. Sarah, who I’d known pretty much my whole life, grinned, whilst Kayleigh rolled her eyes.
“Like to see you get in this position.” Kayleigh retorted, making me laugh.
“Yea, you couldn’t pay me to.”
Sarah flopped down onto the floor with a sigh before rolling onto her back. “So I saw you at the library today.” She turned her head to look at me and smiled. “Who was he?”
“Who?” I tucked my legs up under me and smiled when Sarah sat up.
“The pretty blonde dude who you were chatting up.”
“Oh, as if Mila was chatting anyone up!” Kayleigh stood up. “I think its obvious you are a lesbian.”
Me and Sarah started cracking up, making Kayleigh leave the room.
“Do I really come across as a lesbian?”
Sarah sat down beside me. “Nah, but I seriously think she is. So, who was the guy?” She turned on the sofa so she was facing me, so I did the same and crossed my legs.
“His name is Nick. He’s from America and he’s come over to study. He seems… different. I can’t pin point it.”
“Uh oh…” Sarah said, making me roll my eyes and sigh.
“You’re intrigued. Which means your gonna pursue and pursue until you find out what it is about him that makes him seem different to you.”
“No, I won’t.” I shook my head. “I just meant he seems different from everyone else around here. I thought he came off as shy when I first spoke to him.”
“Probably gay then… or a virgin!”
I leant over and playfully smacked Sarah’s leg before getting up. “No, it’s not that. Anyways, it’s his first year too. I said I’d meet him on the first day.”
“Ah, admit it, you’re gonna befriend him.”
I stopped at the doorway and looked at her. “What’s wrong with that?”
“Everything, Mila. And you know it.”
I rolled my eyes before leaving the room and heading upstairs. I could hear Kayleigh singing in her room and snorted before going into mine.
So what I had made a friend with a guy. What’s so bad about that?
My room was in complete darkness, other than the light outside my window casting a glow from under the blind in the window. My mind was on everything. The guys, my family, Leslie. It was the first time since I’d left that I really missed them all.
I just had to keep telling myself that this was for good, that they will eventually see that I was doing the right thing. Although at this moment it didn’t feel right, and I was blaming Kevin.
Kevin and his stupid, stupid email.
I was thankful that Mila had distracted me. She was easy to talk to and took my mind off the mess at home. I’d kept waiting for her to tell me she recognized me, but it never came. It made me feel… well, weird.
”Yo Nick, you want pizza?!”
I sighed softly before looking toward my doorway. Sure enough light was shining underneath it from where Darren stood in the hall. “Sure!”
Kevin was not going to make me lose my focus. He could email me all he liked, it would not work.
I walked out my room and collided with Ste as he walked out his room.
I stepped back and let Ste walk forward first. He walked into the bathroom and slammed the door, making me shake my head.
“Someone don’t like you.” Darren commented as I joined him on the stairs.
“He’s barely given me a chance to talk to him. He’s always in his room.”
“So are you.”
I looked at Darren who cracked up before jumping down the stairs.
“Pizza, beer and a movie sound alright?” Darren walked into the kitchen whilst I went and sat on the sofa. Two pizza boxes were on the table in front of me, and a stack of DVD’s, all of which I’d already seen countless times.
“Sounds great.” I replied, leaning back on the couch as Darren walked in carrying a 6 pack.
He put the first Transformers DVD in the player before we both sat back and started eating. I would of loved to have gotten into the film, but it reminded me too much of Aaron, and how we’d gone to the movies to see it. Afterwards we’d gone back to my place and Leslie had been sat on the doorstep, waiting for us.
I sighed loudly and reached for a bottle of beer, uncapping it before taking a big swig. I glanced over at Darren and found him watching me. “What?”
“That was some sigh. Am I boring you?”
I shook my head. “No.. not at all. It’s a long story.”
Darren chuckled. “Ah, we’ve all got them. We’re days away from starting uni.. now is the time to have fun and ignore all those “Long stories..” Embrace it my friend! This… is where the fun begins!”
He picked up his beer and leaned over to me, holding it out. I slowly leaned over before clinking out bottles together. Darren sat back satisfied, and started watching the film, but my mind wouldn’t shut off.
In some ways I wished that I was back at that café with Mila, who kept my mind off everything. Or that I was back in Malibu, a year ago and happy with Lauren…. And that Leslie would still be alive.
“Sorry man, I’m gonna head up to bed. Thanks for the beer and pizza though.” I stood up, picking up the empty pizza boxes.
I nodded. “I’m ok, just tired.”
I smiled before leaving the room and heading back upstairs. A part of me was wondering if Kevin had emailed me again. Another part of me was wondering if anyone had left messages on my cell phone, which was hid in the back of the wardrobe, off. I knew these feelings would hit me at some point, and in a way I was glad it was now, and now when I was studying.
These feelings had to shift before the first day of school.