The room where I was assigned to for tutoring was like a mini classroom.
There were five desks and a teacher's desk in front. Don't mind if I do.
My student hadn't arrived yet so I sat behind the teacher's desk.
There was a black binder in front of me that said Navaeylee Jacobs
I guess it's for me.
Inside there was a list of people that I'm tutoring and for how long.
Most of these people were boys.
Hopefully these kids cooperate and learn fast.
The boy scheduled for today was named Raymond Simmons.
He needs help in Geometry, and Chemistry.
Those aren't my worst subjects.
As I finished reading the subjects a voice in the doorway spoke.
"Hey sweetheart," He said with a boyish voice.
I quickly looked at him smiling.
But my smile disappeared when I saw that he wasn't a suck- up elementary school kid.
He looked about my age.
I mean, of course he's a softmore if he needs help in chemistry and geometry.
Suddenly, him calling me sweetheart wasn't so cute anymore.
His two long braids, snapback, and selective-looking outfit made me roll my eyes.
He softly laughed. "Sorry, did I do something wrong?"
He slowly walked up me.
"No. Just sit in one of these desks." I said staring at the list.
What if so these people are my age? I hate people my age...
Raymond sat in a desk right in front if me.
All I could imagine was a cocky boy who thinks he's just too cool.
"I have homework..." he said probably waiting for me to say something. "That I need you to help me with."
"Watcha got?" I asked walking to the desk beside him.
I sat down as he hastily dug in his backpack for whatever.
"My name is Navaeylee by the way." I mention blatantly.
"I'm Ray-Ray. You can call me Ray, or R, or or Double-R, or flame-"
"No. Flame? Seriously?" I asked smiling.
"Sure, no one calls me that, but it would be nice." He said pulling out a crumpled folder.
"No. Ray is fine. I can get used to that. But Flame- it's just stupid."
Ray smiled. "How harsh."
"I can call you Sweetheart, but you're not sweet, Naveah, but nicknames are too cute for you, Leelee, but that's a boyfriend thing, Vea, wait- I like that one. But Navaeylee's much better."
Why go through the trouble?
He wore a smirk that my serious face ripped off.
"Why so serious?" He said like the joker.
I just... can't.
"Anyway, I'm supposed to be tutoring you therefore, forget the nicknames." I said.
"But nicknames are fun,"
"Who cares. Now what do you need help with?" I said getting back to the point.
"Math," He said pulling out a crumpled paper.
He straightened the paper out.
"I need assistance in area formulas, tangent ratios, and everything else..."
"I can help you... but it would help if you'd pay attention in class." I said raising my eyebrow.
He scoffed. "Um, I do pay attention, first off all."
"Yeah, right," I said wiggling my eyebrows.
"I do. The reason I'm here is because I pay attention but I just don't get it."
His facial expression fell as he spoke.
"Okay, I'm sorry for getting you wrong."
He instantly put on that boyish smile again.
It was cute. Especially with his hat convering his eyes.
I scanned his paper.
He hasn't done any of the problems.
"Does anyone else in your class know how to do this?" I ask.
He should've asked someone.
"Some do, other's don't." He replied with a smirk.
"What class period are you in?"
"Yours. I mean, I see you all the time." He said.
He looked confused.
"I never seen you before in my life." I said.
"Well, maybe you should start paying attention, sweetheart-"
"Don't call me that." I said, my heart skipped a beat.
I hate when people call me things like that.
It's probably an insecurity thing. But I don't like too blame it on that.
Ray-Ray rolled his eyes.
"So so cold..."
"Just shut up,"
"Hmmm," He said examining me. "Have you ever had a boyfriend, Navaylee?"
"Has anyone ever slapped you, Ray-Ray?" I asked fake smiling.
"Plenty of times, if that turns you on...."
I hesitated before changing the subject.
"Anyway, what are you confused on little boy?"
"Everything- wait, I'm a young man... little girl."
"If you're a young man and I'm a little girl, why am I the one tutoring you?"
He thought for a second.
"I guess you have a point,"
I scanned the paper in front of me giving my mind enough time to get back on track.
"Oh, right. Ratios." I said remembering.
He smirked to his lap.
I still couldn't see his eyes.
"It's cute the way you emphasized ratios." He said.
"It's annoying the way you keep commenting on what I say."
He started to speak but I sh'd him.
""Do you have a calculator?" I asked.
He took it out.
"You know SOH CAH TOA right?" I asked.
"Okay. Well, there's three ratios: sin, cos, and tan," I began.
"Okay. So, do you get it now?" I asked him after a half hour of frustration,
"Yeah, thanks, nerdgirl." He says still scanning his paper.
"Thanks for the name. It really makes me feel like a superhero." I said feigning sarcasm.
He gave me a 'thanks for your humor' smile.
"But really, thank you. See ya next week."
He slowly walked towards the door.
He halted looking to the side. "Nerdgirl,"
"Retard boy," I slightly laughed at my words.
"We can be a duo. " He whispered loudly but kind of seductive.
As he finished walking out, I looked at the name list again.
My eyes watered at the familiar name that somehow, I knew was bad.
My heart dropped when I remembered what he was to me.
My first- I don't even know.
I liked him for four years now. I never knew he existed, but when I found out, I never forgot.
I got nervous panics over my body.
Does he remember? What did it mean? Was it a dare? Why then? Why not earlier?
Wow, this is fucked up.
The day he bothered to meet me was last year in March. I was on the afterschool bus waiting for the buses to pull off. Exactly when the buses started leaving, he hopped on.
Like always, I sat in the middle section of the bus watching whoever came on. Then... I freaked out inside. My stomach turned upside down as he headed to the back of the bus. He stopped when he caught a good look at the back. Then slowly turned around.
Since I was so nervous, it felt like he was jabbing my eyes with knives when he looked at me. He came up to my seat and asked me if he could sit by me. I pretended to be all cool about it but I smushed myself against the window trying hard to keep my distance.
The half of the bus ride, I stared out the window. When I finally decided to finally look straight or around, he started a conversation with me.
"How long does the ride usually take?" He scooted closer to me.
I looked up and my eyes instantly landed into his big, brown eyes. It was like he was trying to get me to look into them the whole time. My eyes started watering so I looked out the window. They do that whenever I get nervous.
"Usually, if you're one of the last stops, about thirty minutes." I replied, my throat burning even though I sounded normal. I sat on my hands to keep them from fidgeting. He looked away. But I felt like I was being awkward so I kept up the conversation.
"Uh, where do you live?"
He smiled and raised his eyebrows.
"Well," He touched my leg. "I live in Stone Ridge."
He still smiled and stared into my eyes as he spoke.
"Oh, then I guess you are close to last,"
"I am?" He said tilting his head at me with a small smile.
"I think so,"
I wanted to look away to avoid him seeing me smile, but I didn't.
"Navaeylee, right?" He asked.
"Yeah, how'd you know?" I said like I was invisible or something.
"You were that weird girl in my homeroom last year," He said with his eyebrow raised.
"How was I we-"
"I mean crazy."
Like that was any better. I smiled anyway.
I mean, I remember attempting a handstand in homeroom but I fell over knocking over
a couple of desks. But I didn't think he saw. I thought no one was there but me and Alexia!
The ride became silent. He awkwardly looked at me a few times, and looked up and down restlessly. He repeated that sequence until we were near his stop.
He stared at me one last time and didn't look away like his goal was to get me to look at him. When I finally turned my head, he gently grabbed me then kissed me for a couple of seconds. When he stopped, so did the bus.
Julien looked over the seat, then back at me. Without saying goodbye, he left off the bus.
*Back to the present*
I hated him because of that.
It was almost the best day of that year. Except the fact that he never ever spoke to me after that.
I see Julien in the halls once in a while and I feel like sometimes he tries to make eye contact. But I could be delusional....
Maybe it was a bet. It probably meant nothing.
Julien was my only crush and I'm still kind of hooked.
I hated him for not noticing me, for tricking me into thinking he ever liked me, and never taking to me.
But... what if he recognized my name in the fliers? What if he didn't? Why do I care?!
He probaby forgot about me anyway.
When Julien came in, I wasn't as bold as I was with Ray-Ray.
I pretended to be doing something important then acted as if I didn't realize he was here.
"Oh, hey," I say nonchalantly. "You must be Julio."
He smirked. "It's Julien,"
Why does he have to be so cute. With his perfect skin and dark hair...
He walked up to the desk I was in and stared at me like I said something weird.
"I know you from somewhere." He said.
So, he did forget me.
My eyes watered but I blinked to make it go away.
"Well, that's weird because I don't remember you." I said trying to make him feel dumb.
He looked hurt.
"Liar," He stated taking a seat in one of the desks in front of me.
"Anyway," He hesitated.
"I have a lot of homework questions, Navaeylee."
"That's not my name." I said, of course lying.
"mmm So you continue to lie... Navaeylee."
I smiled breaking a little.
"I guess I'm a liar." I shrugged.
"Are you going to come over here or not?" He asked then smirked.
"Sure," I said slowly rising and sitting next to him.
"So, my name is Navaeylee and I like the color red." I said introducing myself with sarcastic happiness.
"I love the color red." He said humorously wiggling his eyebrows.
He scooted his desk toward me. "And my name's Julien Cooke."
His eyebrows were raised and his eyes were filled with amusement.
What's so damn amusing?
"Don't look at me like that."
"Like what?" He said pretending to be clueless but he rested his hand on my lap
Are you fucking me right now?
His smirk refused to disappear.
I shook my head. "Nothing. What homework do you have?"
I tried keeping back a huge smile.
I guess I still have a huge crush on him.
"I'm a big boy. I don't need your help."
"Oh really? because you said you have a lot of homework questions."
"Yeah, I wasn't serious."
He took out a folder without taking his eyes off me.
I have a feeling he hasn't forgot about what happened last year.
He waved around the red folder
"It's red, see?"
I rolled my eyes which wiped the smile off his face quickly.
After a moment of silence, Julien decided to speak.
"I have a question, Nev." He said making my eyebrows crinkle.
"Who's this Nev you speak of?"
He grinned. "You. "
"No, it's not. My name's Navaeylee."
He wore a thinking expression.
"What's wrong with nicknames-"
"What's wrong with my full name?" I asked defensively.
Julien grinned again.
"Why do find this so amusing?" I ask.
"Why can't you look me in the eyes?"
"What do you mean?" I asked.
"We've been talking this whole time and not once have you looked me in the eyes."
"I was just wondering why. It's so unprofessional, Nev."
He smirked again. "So, Nev, my question is, why are you so boring?- I mean Nerdy- I mean serious- I mean complicated?"
"Why are you so annoying?- I mean talkative- I mean weird- I mean-"
He cut me off.
"Why are you do defensive?"
"Why are you so curious?"
"Why are you so mean?"
"Why are you so forgetful?"
"Why are you so obscure?"
"Why aren't you obscure?"
"God, why are you so cute?"
"Why are you- don't call me that."
"Oh. Didn't think you'd catch that." He said looking to his lap. "So, what do you mean forgetful?"
Wait- did I really mention that?
There was a long, awkward silence between us before I came up with a lie.
"Don't lie." He said right when I opened my mouth.
"It's nothing that you need to know about."
"Well, you were talking about me so it's ..."
"Like I said, none of your business."
"Yes it is. I would love to know what I forgot. Please, Nev." Julien said with a puppy dog face.
Didn't I tell him not to call me Nev?
"Um, no. I just needed a comeback that's all."
He looked thoughtful.
"I don't believe you. What did I forget?"
"Figure it out."
His eyes stuck to me as he leaned back in his chair like he was actually trying to figure it out.
"Remember that time on the bus?"
He paused like he was testing my facial expressions.
My stomach jumped like I accidentally swallowed a knife... whole.
I mean, I don't exactly know how a person accidentally swallows a knife but I definately didn't expect it.
I tried to look relaxed but I felt constipated.
"What time on the bus?"
I sounded surprisingly convincing.
"Last year, you came on my bus with your friend. And you fell down the stairs"
I contemplated that for a second.
Then he started laughing.
He knows what he's doing.
But I couldn't help but think that it's true.
Maybe he doesn't remember.
Or maybe he knows but wants to play with me.
I joined in his laughter after remember me falling.
He's so mean!
My laugh faded into a smile.
When he noticed, his faded too as his eyes traveled from mine to my hands to my desk to my feet to my... mouth?
That created the chills that traveled throughout every bone in my body.
"Uh um..." He stuttered.
Suddenly, I felt really uncomfortable. More than I already was.
Julien got out his calculator without taking his eyes off of me.
I quickly looked to the wall.
"Is something wrong?" He asks. He wasn't smiling, but his eyes were.
"Yes, actually." I said realizing I thought out loud.
He slightly smiled.
"What, do you not like me?"
He rested his foot on top of mine under the desk.
I decided on not answering.
I walked back to my original teacher's desk pretty sure he was staring at me.
I sat down to realize that he was.
He was smirking like he was keeping something from me, then he focused on his math.
The first time I see him in forever and he's got jokes...
I better not have a kick me sign on by back.
What I learned today:
*I am still in fact absolutely 100% in love with Julien Cooke.
I should have known that feelings don't just disappear.