Of course, I'm hanging out today on Katie Carroll's blog! She's one of my best writing buddies and I
highly, highly recommend you check out her book, Elixir Bound! It's awesome!
And today, we're on to a bit more of Sandra and James. I hope you're enjoying their antics as much as I am :)
~James was good to his word. He didn’t speak to me for the rest of the week. Mary and I got over our argument about the Steven issue. Things went back to as normal as they could be when I still found myself spying on James.
It was impossible not to notice more of Richie while I was at it. They were so different I couldn’t understand what drew them together. But it was impossible to miss the sadness in Richie’s eyes. The way he blended into the back of every classroom. Whatever the reasoning behind James’ actions, I was grateful for it.
That Saturday, there was a baseball game. It was still pre-season, but we were playing the team from
I didn’t pay much attention to the game itself. Not when I saw that James was there, Richie in tow, sitting in the shadows on one side of the bleachers.
Afterward, I wandered to the small park near the school. Several mothers had their kids out to laugh and run in the sunshine. I took a seat on one of the benches, leaning back to let the sun touch my face. After a while, I pulled a novel from my bag.
Somehow, he snuck up on me. I felt his weight settle onto the bench next to me but didn’t look over. Even though all I wanted to do was lean closer and breathe in whatever made him smell so good.
“I imagine you’re here to say something?” I finally spoke after it became obvious he wasn’t going anywhere.
His blue eyes met mine and a small smirk of a smile made my heart beat faster. “I was wondering why it would be better for both of us if I were to leave you alone?”
I carefully closed my book, taking the extra seconds to think about how to answer. “Because my friends are mean sometimes. I don’t want them picking on you. Again.”
He frowned. “I’m certain I can handle that myself.”
“Well, I’m not sure I can,” I snapped. It was true. I wished I was better at handling them, but I wasn’t.
“So you’d rather give in to them and pretend I don’t exist?”
I laughed softly. It wasn’t as though I could tell him I couldn’t ignore his existence. I thought about him more than I should, always scanned the halls for him, but I didn’t want him knowing that. It would only go to his head. “They’re my friends. I’d rather not lose them.”
James nodded slowly, like he wasn’t completely convinced. “Seems like they are really good friends then.”
I didn’t miss the sarcasm in his tone. Huffing out a deep breath, I shrugged. “They are what they are.” I started to gather up my things, annoyed and suddenly cold.
James didn’t say a word, just watched me with a frown. Once I stood, my bag over my shoulder, I looked at him sitting there. The inner wiggly feeling was back in force. Did I really want to go through the rest of the school year pretending I wasn’t interested in him? Did I want to let Mary, Steven, and the others play that role?
The answer was simple. “You can pick me up tonight at seven. I expect you to answer a few questions.”
James’ grin made my knees a little wobbly as I walked away.