"Why do you carry it around if you don't like it?" he confusedly asked.
"My brother liked it before he died" I said casually, trying to shrug it off.
"Oh.. Sorry. Must suck to lose a sibling."
But it was painful reminders like this that reminded me that Hugo was never really my brother. Not related.. unfortunately, unlike Lacey.
"What happened, if you don't mind me asking?"
I felt my eyes fill with rage as they darted up to his face.
But then I saw his expression, full of concern, sympathy and innocent question.
I forgot that I was in Dublin, not back.. there. He didn't know of the whole crossbred-accident tragedy.
It was weird how people could be so horrifically disgusting to people, even after their death.
"Um.. well.. He was my adopted brother. He and his girlfriend jumped out in front of a car when I was fourteen."
"So.. six years ago?"
He nodded, swirling his coffee with a small stick.
A part of me told me that I was pathetic, still carrying around a copy of Romeo and Juliet. But the other part asked the unanswerable question... What else was I supposed to do?
"That really sucks."
"You'll never know" I said with slight indignance.
"Well.. I think I do."
His eyes filled with sadness.
"My best friend was murdered three years ago."
Sadness was then replaced by anger.
"The bastard raped her and strangled her. Left her there!"
His fist slammed onto the table, and I jumped.
"Twenty five years in prison doesn't make up for it. Counselling doesn't help either."
"I just go to my counselling to keep my aunt happy" I inputted timidly.
He looked up to me, bloodthirsty and enraged, lost and confused. But it began to melt away.
"I learned to mask it all. Expressing my feelings don't always help. Stupid counsellor doesn't know a thing."
I raised my eyebrows in agreement.
"You seem cool" he said softly. "Maybe that's why I noticed you. But hey!" he laughed. "This is no way to start a friendship!"
Was I just friendzoned?
"What did you say your name was?"
"Clodagh. Clodagh Reilly."
Dammit, why was my voice going weird?
"Ah, we have a James Bond" he winked.
"Didn't he say his last name first?" I asked.
"You don't study film, do you?"
He vigorously shook his head.
"Nah, music and French. I am such a romantic" he said jokingly, fluttering his eyelashes.
But then, his phone blared out a song. He rolled his eyes and looked at his phone screen.
I saw him swearing under his breath.
His eyes flickered up to me again.
"Sorry Clodagh, I better go. My mum is freaking out cause apparently I can't go out on my own for an hour without telling her because it turns out I'm twelve." He shook his head in frustration.
"See you tomorrow, hopefully" he said cheerily, gathering up his books. He stood up, and nodded.
I sat dumbfounded.
I think he was hitting on me. I had guys do that in the past, but usually when I tell them to piss off, that's exactly what they do.
But I found myself wanting Jake to stay.
But the small smile on my face was cruelly wiped off when James' number popped up on my phone.
I shuddered. I didn't want to end up with a loser like my mum had, my only pride and joy being something that wasn't even mine, like Hugo was to mum. My feelings, my future, my past.. They all scare me, because of James.