The next day in school I am completely exhausted. I lean against my locker, yawning, when I am suddenly pulled into a strong embrace.
"Oh, Evelyn! Thank God you're alright! I'm so sorry for leaving you! What happened?" Sara says, almost too quickly to understand.
"Yeah, I'm fine. No need to apologize, I guess I just overreacted. I got water chucked over my head by-" I stop. I'm never gunna live this down if she finds out who it is.
"By who?" She wrinkles her nose in curiosity.
"Ummm. Some random guy that was nearby, I've never met him before, I guess he worked with the DJ or caterers or something." I lie.
"Did you get his number?" Sara asks, deadly serious, making me burst into laughter. "My hair was burning. To be honest, my mind wasn't really on guys."
"Good point!" She laughs too. We begin our walk to our first period class with girly chit chat. We discuss who looked the best last night, who we think hooked up, who had the most expensive dress, etc. I can't help but notice the other students staring at me. I guess it's not every day someone bursts into flames at their prom.
"Ignore them, Ev." Sara says, a little too loudly. I nod and smile weakly at her.
We continue our walk and gossip. That's when I see him. Scott. I have to force myself to keep walking, though my body tells me to stop and stare. He seems to get more beautiful every time I see him. I swallow and choke out the words
"Hey, Scott." He nods at me subtly and continues walking. Was that really the same guy I met last night? Sara steps in front of me, grabs my shoulders and shakes me.
"Hellooo?" Her eyebrows are raised as she stares into my face. "Since when have you been pally with Scott Summers?!"
"I'm not! I just said hi!" I bite my lip nervously.
"Oh my gosh! You so like him!" Her beaming smile stretches from ear to ear.
"What? No, I don't!" I exclaim. Luckily, we now turn the corner to my first class.
"Oops, gotta go!" I say, slipping through the door of the classroom.
"I'll get you later, silly!" She calls after me, making me chuckle. I take my seat and the long school day begins.
By the end of the day I am completely drained. High school is hard work! I trudge out of the school gates and begin the walk home.
"Evelyn! Wait up!" I turn to see Scott behind me, and stop for him to catch up.
"What the hell? You wouldn't even talk to me earlier!" My words scold him like a child. Good.
"I'm sorry... I'm just a very private person, especially in school." He drops his head.
"Why?" I don't let up with my frustration.
"You know why!" He gestures towards his glasses. I sigh.
"I'm sorry, Scott." I place my hand on his shoulder, which is pretty awkward considering he's over six feet tall, and I'm just over five. "I just... This whole thing with last night and-"
"Maybe we should talk about this somewhere more private." Scott mumbles.
It is only now that I realize we're still on a public street outside of a high school at the end of a school day. I nod and he and I walk a little further on before we come to a shaded alley. It is very unlikely anyone would find us there; it's just full of trash. I mean, it totally stinks, but it'll work.
"What were you gunna say?" Scott asks, although he seems more interested in watching his feet lazily kick an empty can, than in what I have to say.
"I need you right now, Scott! You're the only one who understands!" I nearly shout. "I can't deal with you ignoring me when last night I found out I'm some kind of... Some kind of freak!"
This catches his attention. His head snaps up to see me and he steps back slightly. "Freak?" He says almost inaudibly.
"Is that how you see me? A freak?"
"No! No, Scott! That's not what I meant, I just-"
"Don't bother!" He cuts me off and begins to walk towards the entrance to the alley.
"Scott! Please!" I beg, chasing after him. I manage to grab his arm, causing him to turn quickly.
"I thought you of all people would understand." He spits out. "But you don't. You're just like the rest of them!"
He continues to walk. I can't let him leave me like this. We need each other. We have to stick together.
Suddenly, an insane idea forms in my mind, a memory. Of how my hand shot out a flame that set the dance floor alight. Without thinking, I swing my head around, and sure enough, I am on fire again. Wow. This is really kindaa cool! I run my fingers through the flames in my hair and then flick my flame-engulfed hand towards one of the trash cans to the left of where Scott is walking. I see the fire fly from my grasp and ignite the trash within seconds. Scott turns quickly.
"What the hell do you think you're doing?!" He storms back in my direction. "Are you insane?!"
"Maybe I am! How will you know if you don't help me?" I shout as the flames roar in my ears.
"Evelyn! You're being stupid!" He says as he reaches me.
"I'm sorry, Scott. You know I don't think you're a freak. You're spectacular! Your gift is..."
"A menace?" He suggests.
"I was going to say beautiful." I respond. He visibly relaxes.
"Scott, I only properly met you yesterday, but you mean so much to me already. Please don't leave me now?" He sighs and nods.
"I know, Evelyn. I won't, I promise." He smiles slightly.
"Thank you. I'm so sorry. I promise I'll try to be more sensitive in the future." I move closer to him. "I mean it, thank you."
He looks down at me and our noses nearly touch. I feel my heart rate increase and my breathing become heavier. I want to kiss him now. I need to kiss him now. He smirks slightly, making me giggle.
"What are you smiling about?" I question.
"I want to kiss you right now, but I don't think that's a very good idea when your hair is on fire." Oh crap! I completely forgot about that! I close my eyes and breathe deeply to calm myself, until the warmth recedes from my scalp.
"Better?" I ask, still not 100% whether I'm still on fire or not.
"Better." He whispers, and, suddenly, I'm in his arms are around me and his lips are on mine. My body sags into his embrace and my lips unintentionally move into a slight smile beneath his lips. I tiptoe slightly and kiss him back. Soon, our contact ceases and we are left smiling at each other, trying to calm our rapid heart rates.
"Evelyn. We need to stick together." He whispers. I nod and bite my lip, smiling.
"I agree." How could I not? Spending time with the original tall, dark and handsome, who also has a kick ass special power? Who would turn that down?!
"Come on," he says, offering me his hand "I'll walk you home."