It Was Meant To Be

Molly dreams of two things: getting into her first-choice university and finding true love. Music-loving slacker Zayn also dreams of two things:winning the battle of the bands- and winning Molly.He is determined to make her fall in love with him.


15. Something Real

Something Real

8th September, 3.41 p.m

Zayn POV

"Shania?" I say.

She's working on her locker combination.


Shania has that jumpy reaction you get when someone scares you.

"You scared me," she says.

"Sorry. It's just that you didn't hear me."

I really hope that Shania gets easier to deal with in the very imeediate future.

"Can I talk to you?" I say.

"You already are."

Not here. Can we go somewhere?"

"Uh..." She eyes me suspiciously. "Like the front of the school?"


"Just give me a minute."

I stand there watching Shania cram her bag with more books and notebooks than I've probably had in my entire life.

"That's amazing!" I shout.


"How much you have to take home. Isn't your bag mad heavy?"

"Yup." Shania slams her locker  and spins the number wheel on her lock. "Let's go."

We walk to the front, which is in the opposite direction of the main doors. This is a good thing because it means we don't have to risk running into Molly and that asshole.

Outside, we sit on a bench.

"So," Shania says.

"S-o." I stutter. I clear my throat. "I'm not really sure where to begin."

"The beginning's always a good place."

I try to remember what I'm suppose to say. I had this speech all planned but after the way Molly was looking at me in class just now, I'm all distracted.

"I know Molly is going out with Andrew, but... do you think I'd have a chance with her?"

"Um. I don't think you're her type. No offence."

"It's just... she's been sorta looking at me in class so..."

"She was probably just trying to figure out why you were looking at her."

So I guess I wasn't all that inconspicuous. "But do you think there's a chance she might like me?"

"I couldn't tell you."
"You don't know?"

"Look," Shania says. "Molly's my best friend. Even if she told me she liked you? I couldn't tell you."

"She said she likes me?"

"No, I said if she said she did, I couldn't tell you." Shania sighs. "Why do you want to know, anyway?"

"Wouldn't you want to know if someone liked you?"


"Why not?"

"It would be useless information. I'm not allowed to date."


Anyone else would be completely mortified to admit what she just said but Shania sits there, scuffing her sneakers against the ground like it's nothing.

"Is that it?" she says "You want to know if she likes you just to know?"

"No." I squint at the sun.

"Then why?"

I turn to look at her. This is Molly's best friend. Maybe if she sees that I'm for real, she'll help me but Josh is right. I don't want to come off like some demented lunatic, all liking a girl so much who I don't even know.

"The thing is...I think I her."

"Yeah," Shania says. "I think I got that part."

"I know it sounds crazy and she obviously likes Andrew, but I like her."

Probably for the first time in her life, Shania says nothing.

"That's why I want to know if I have a chance with her or not."

"That's interesting, because last time I checked you weren't even friends."

"We're not. I mean, we talked last year. Sort of." I sound like an idiot but I don't care. "And she's too good for Andrew. The guy's a dickhead. He's-" I could go on but now's not the time.

"I don't really know Andrew, but Molly didn't even sit with us in lunch today. I get the feeling he needs a lot of attention."

"I'd definitely be more flexible about that."

"But you don't even know her," Shania says. "How can you like someone you don't even know?"

"But see, that's the thing. I feel like I already know her. Haven't you ever felt so connected with someone that you just click right away?"

"Oh. Well, you should try it sometime." I give her my most charming smile. "It'll change your life."

Shania gives me a weird look. "Why are you telling me all this?"

"Because I'm hoping you'll help me and I trust you."

"You do?"

"Yeah. Shouldn't I?"

"No, you can. I wont tell anyone."

"Thanks." Now for the hard part. "There's this other thing I want ask you..."


"Would you switch partners with me in Music Theory?"

"What? NO! And be with Robert? Are you completely insane?"

"Not completely. Just enough to ask you for a huge favour that would change my life."

"No, that is way beyond a favour. I'd say this request would require you to be my personal slave for the rest of the year."

"Hey, if this works out, I'll be your personal slave for life."

"Why should I help you?" She asks.

I try to find the right words to make her see that this has to happen. "It would give us a chance to find out if this is what I think it is."

"And what's that?"

I take a deep breath. "Something real," I reply.

Shania doesn't say anything.

"So?" I slide off the bench. I kneel on the ground. I reach out for her hand. She laughs. "Will you do it?"

"I'm not saying I like this," Shania says.

"Of course not." I shake my head violently.

"You don't even know her and you're weird. Plus you're not her type."

"All true." I nod vigorously.

"I'm only doing this because Molly's my best friend." Shania stands up and hucks her bag over her shoulder.

"Deal?" I say

"Deal," she says

We shake on it.

I race to the music room. Mr Hornby's still there, all hunched over his desk. I've never really talked to him. He's notorious for throwing a tantrum at the most minor thing. I heard he even takes off points for yawning. So I have to be extra careful how I play this. Of particular difficulty will be constantly reminding myself not to call him Mr Horny. Which is naturally what everyone calls him and it's probably true because he has, like, ten kids.

I knock on the open door.

"Yes?" He looks up from a stack of papers.

"Sorry to bother you. I was-"

"Did you just get here?"

No. I've been under the piano the whole time.

"Yeah. I'm...I have a quick question for you."

Mr Horny grumbles. He motions me over.

I go over to his desk and sit on the chair across form him.

"What can I do for you?" he asks.

"It's about class. I was wondering? If I could switch partners?"

"Is there a problem with Robert?"

"No. Well actually yeah. Not that he's the problem."

Mr Horny waits.

"It's kind of complicated," I say. In my rush to get here, I forgot to figure out what to say.

"I think I know what's going on."

"You do?" How can he possibly know? Is it that obvious?"

"I'm not as out of it as you think," he says. "I am rather observant, you know."

"Oh - yeah, absolutely." So the guy's been watching me lust over Molly this whole time?

"It's not easy being in your position." He sighs. "I've been there myself!"

Mr Horny is, like, the last teacher I want to hear this from. Not that I want to hear about any of my other teachers' sex lives.

"I should have seen this coming," he says.

The guy is good. He must have hormonal fluctuation radar. My readings fly right off the chart every time I look at Molly.

"Robert's not, how shall I put this delicately, the sharpest crayon in the box."


"You have outstanding talent, Zayn. I realize that Robert's not up to snuff."

"Oh." This would  be my current partner, Robert Garten. From that horrible incident in the locker room last year. I still feel bad for him. And how Andrew was a part of it all.

"Can you hang in there until the end of marking period? He'll be transferring out of the class at that time. I think he's realized he's not too musically inclined."

"Uh...I was sort of hoping for tomorrow."

"Well, I'll be making changes at the end of marking period, but I can't do anything until then. In the meantime, maybe some of your talent will rub off on him."

The end of marking period isn't until next month. I have no idea how I'm going to last that long. But I have to play it cool.

"Maybe," I say.

Mr Horny opens a notebook. "Let's see. There are some other changes I want to make, so let's get all of this down. Who should I pair you up with? If I switch Paula with Graham-"

"Actually, I had an idea."

"Oh?" Mr Horny looks up from his page. "What's that?"

"Well... I was thinking that Shania and Molly are both really smart ant they are together and that's kind of hogging all the brainpower, you know?"

He laughs. "I get the picture."

"And I'm trying to do a lot better this year, for college apps and all. SO if-"

"Aha!" he announces like he just solved the Bermuda Triangle mystery. "I can put you with Shania." He starts to write that down.

"No" I yell.

Mr Horny raises an eyebrow at me.

"I mean, I was thinking that It would be... better if you put me with Molly."

"Any particular reason for that?"

"Yeah." The lie comes to me quickly . "She told me! we were talking about my music and she's really into what I'm doing and we're both into Vivaldi's quartets and-"

"Ah! I like those myself. Fine." He writes that down.

"OK, well..." I get up.

"Thanks for being honest with me Zayn."
I only feel a little guilty.


I drive to Mike's house. I barge into his room without knocking.

"Don't mind me," Mike says. "I just live here."
"Dude," I say. "It's done."

"The plan! Molly's my partner!"


"I know. But not until next month."

"No worries," Mike says. "Until then, you always have"


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