Hurdles

Our relationship. It wasn't sonnet inspiring, the story of it won't make thousands want to listen. But it was complicated and it was special to us. It was certainly more than I bargained for from just seeing a boy with a football helmet across the room.

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22. Twenty two

I'm in the hallway one day at school, just at my locker, and I think I'm by myself but when I turn around I'm faced by three girls. I try to smile and not look too shocked. I've seen them around, I'm pretty sure they're the popular ones. They're generally the ones giving me dirty looks or blocking me in gym class or whatever, all things I've become pretty oblivious about. I try to be nice though, because if I'm nice what reason do they have to dislike me?

"Hey." I say, still smiley. 

"Hello." the one in the middle says, a little frown on her face, the kind all mean girls have to try and look serious or whatever. "Alice, right?" 

"Yep." 

"Hey." she says, a fake smile on her face now. "We realised we hadn't really welcomed you to the school."

"Oh I'm pretty settled in now." I laugh a little. "Thank you though, that's nice of you."

"Yeah." she says and then her smile drops and she leans in close. "I don't know what kind of whore you must be to just get in with the football team, but know it doesn't give you a good reputation around here. We don't like your attitude. You act like a nice girl and you're obviously not. And as for Harry? You don't know what you're getting into by being with him. You are not prepared for what happens with that. Just know that."

She says it all in one breath and then steps back, smiling at me again. 

"You have some issues." I tell her, shocked.

"Yep." she just keeps smiling and then gives a little wave before walking away, her friends following. I have no idea what happened there are what anything she said meant but I disregard it all as bitchiness because I'm sure that's what it is. 

I bring it up to Harry that night when the two of us are hanging out and I'm laughing about it because I really do find it funny but he's staring at me horrified the whole time I'm talking to him. 

"Wait, she just ambushed you like that?" he says once I've finished. 

"Yeah." I laugh. "She was acting so nice and then I swear she would have murdered me without a second thought."

"This isn't funny Alice!" he says. "This is bullying!"

I laugh at him, shaking my head. "It's not bullying."

"Well it's really not okay." he says, still outraged. "What did she say about you being friends with us again?" 

I sigh, knowing he's going to overreact. "She called me a whore."

"No!" he exclaims. "No!"

"Yes!" I mock him but he ignored me. 

"She can't say that about you." he shakes his head. "What if she spreads that around?" 

"Who cares?" I shrug. "We know I didn't sleep with you all to be friends with you, who cares if everybody else thinks so?" 

"I care." he says defensively. 

"Why though?" I laugh at him again. 

"Because if it actually got spread around, you'd care!" he argues. "What else did she say?" 

I groan. "I already told you the whole thing."

"Tell me again, I was in a state of shock listening to you the first time."

I shrug. "She just said I didn't know what I was getting into by being with you. Not that I am with you, but y'know." I smile at him a little then, narrowing my eyes. "Is she your ex girlfriend?" 

"Amy?" his eyes widen. "No."

"Then what could she possibly be talking about?" 

"I don't know! Maybe she's obsessed with me."

"I doubt that."

"You are."

"I'm not."

"Then why are you here?"

I raise my eyebrows at him. "I have no idea actually. I'm gonna go."

"Good, it was getting real boring to be honest."

"You know what? Why don't I just move back to England while I'm at it?" 

"Oh the further away the better really."

"Oh good, glad you're into it. Bye forever."

"Forever and ever." he says and we both glare at each other for a moment before bursting out laughing at the exact same time. I love when that happens, when we're both on the exact same page like that, doing things at the same time and picking up on each other's jokes so easily. It's nice to have a friend like that. 

"Seriously though, back to the point." he says, smiling at me. "Don't let those girls get to you."

"I wasn't." I say, amused. "You were the one letting them get to you."

"Can we not be serious for one moment?" he says even though he's laughing. "Really. Don't be upset by people like that. We're you're friends and that's what you need to focus on."

"I am focusing on that." I say, ruffling his hair as I stand up. "I'm going. I shall see you tomorrow."

"Yes you shall." he smiles up at me.

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