My leg bounces up and down manically. The Nurses’ station is just round the corner and, though its usually busy, you can normally be seen within a few minutes.
It’s now quarter past.
They’ve been almost twenty minutes and I can faintly hear Mrs. Oscar with her damn bell.
Roan stands up to stretch, Rin playfully poking him in the stomach. I look away when he makes a grab at her, Rin squealing girlishly.
Since when was Roan so expressive?
Stupid Barbie girl.
I squeeze my lids together. Trying to shut out the world, everything. Rin and Roan now kissing loudly beside me, the quickly emptying canteen and the lack of presence at my side as I make my way to PE.
I couldn’t be jealous.
Why would I be?
If I hurt my ankle, Leo would behave exactly the same. Obviously he doesn’t like her, so why would I be jealous?
I’m being possessive.
Well that’s completely different problem solved.
Everything is hunky dory.
I spin in place, almost smacking someone in the face in order to watch Leo jog up. Wavy brown hair bouncing up and down, mouth stretching into a smile. I think about running my fingers through that hair, pulling his head closer to mine and-
“You okay? You look kinda… sick.” He touches my forehead and I jolt backwards.
“Fine.” I clear my throat, embarrassed at how squeaky my voice came out.
His brows twitch together for a moment before he smiles.
“You know what we’re doing today?” He asks, pulling a face when he spots Roan and Rin walking in front, arm in arm.
“No idea, hey how is the life size Barbie?”
“Who?” He steers me around a group of year sevens who stand grouped together. They’re all big eyes and open mouths when they spot us.
“The blonde girl.”
I don’t know why I can’t bring myself to say her name.
Maybe it’s a speak of the Devil and he shall appear thing? And I certainly don’t want her popping up anytime….ever.
“Oh Luce? Yeah she was fine. Must have just twisted it.” He looks out of the corner of his eyes, smirking at me. “I wonder how she did that?”
I shrug, twirling a piece of hair around my finger to hide my guilty expression.
“Must have been her heels.”
“Mmm, must have been.”
I peek through my hair at Leo, he’s got a knowing smile on his lips that he quickly tries to hide as Roan and Rin turn around, waiting for us as we near the changing rooms.
I always wished to have someone else to change with. To laugh and mess around.
And now I do.
But it’s Rin.
The universe has a funny sense of humour.
We separate ways, awkward silence falling between both our groups.
I pause outside the chipped green door with the frosted glass window.
She frowns, an uneasy smile on her face as she asks, “why?”
I sigh and push open the door.
Silence falls but I’m used to it and carry on my way to the back corner with the wide space.
Rin hugs herself, keeping her head down which is the worst thing she can do.
When walking through a pack of lions, you don’t make yourself look vulnerable.
Feeling sorry for her, I give her a small smile.
“Keep your head up.” I say quietly, pulling off my shirt. “Act like you don’t care.”
She begins to change. She’s petite and slim built, stomach flat and toned, skin slightly tan.
I start to feel self-conscious of my curvier build and pale skin.
“But I do.” She wails quietly.
“So do I, just don’t show it. You can either be an Outsider who’s bullied and mocked, or you can be an Outsider who’s left alone and feared. Unfortunately those are the only two options”
She blinks, big brown eyes slightly watery.
“I never thought of it like that.”
Already in my kit, I pull out my earrings and tie up my hair.
“You wouldn’t have, you were on the other side of it.”
She pulls on her shirt and starts changing into her shorts.
I tie my laces slowly, giving her time to catch up.
She has little canvas dap shoes that she just slips on.
She’s done for if she needs grip. Especially when it’s this early in the year and the grass is permanently wet.
Rin takes her time doing her hair, making sure every strand falls into place, her fringe resting just so.
I can’t help but wonder at the pointlessness of her task. Once we get out there, we’ll have to run round the track where it’ll all get blown out of place.
I figure she must have been part of the group of girls who jog at the back, careful to make sure they run attractively and don’t sweat.
Well that was going to change.
I manage to force her to jog out and try to suppress my smile when she starts busily sorting her hair out as soon as we stop, casting glances over her shoulder for Roan.
Say what you like, but it’s usually all the singing and messing about from the boys that means they’re actually last out.
Girls can bitch and dress at the same time. Great multi-taskers us.
Roan runs straight up to Rin and wraps his arms around her in a backwards bear hug, easily lifting her slight frame and spinning her round in the air.
Leo strolls over with a small smile and a head shake at the ridiculously cutesy couple.
He’s wisely chosen to wear an appropriate top today, a black sports one that makes his chest seem wider, firmer.
I find myself wishing I’d paid attention when I’d leant on that chest.
You know… to compare shirts.
“Sup.” He grins, coming to a stop beside me, word misting in the air.
I watch our breaths twist together before they disappear.
“Sup.” I do a boy chin bob and smile.
“Apparently, we’re on combat today.”
I perk up immediately, jumping up and down like a little kid.
“Yes! Ha! Wait, do we have to go in same sex pairs?”
He shakes his head and smiles crookedly at me.
“Nope, she wants you girls to get the real experience. So fancy getting beaten up by me?”
“I don’t think that matters when it won’t be me getting beaten up.”
“You can’t use your Quirk, not like I know you did this morning with Luce.”
“Is that her rule or yours? And I did not-”
“Leo!” A high pitched voice squeals and suddenly Leo has two heads and a pair legs wrapped around his waist.
Speak of the Devil…
“Luce? Hi. Your ankle better then?” Leo sets her down, but not before she can give me a glare.
“Yep, must have just been a freak,” her eyes dart to mine. “Incident.”
I sneer back, tempted to zap her again.
“Hey, wanna be my partner?” She smiles, blonde hair in an ornate bun on top of her head, make-up freshly applied.
“Great!” Devil Barbie grabs Leo’s arm and drags him away, chatting away as Leo shoots me an apologetic glance. I smile and wave it off, pretending a ball of hot fury isn’t currently making me feel like I could breathe fire.
I wish I could.
I’m sure the extensions in Barbie’s hair would look great flaming on her head…
Someone taps my shoulder and I turn, ball growing.
“Looks like you need a partner.” He smirks. “So do I.”
“You’re asking me if I want the opportunity to beat you up?”
Maybe this wouldn’t be so bad?