The 17 year old Serial Dater

Amanda Van Der Barron is young, free, single...and hating it. Why can't she find a guy as easily as her friend Kat? She decides to take drastic action so she can find the man of her dreams before her 18th birthday...


2. The Problem

Amanda had been single her whole life, and she was sick of it. She could no longer ignore that fact. As much as she tried, it kept slipping into her mind, like the memory of some drunken mistake that couldn’t quite be repressed. When she was younger, she could cancel out any longing with work and sleepovers and gossip and extracurricular sport. But as her friends started to dance in and out of relationships with varying degrees of commitment, she couldn’t keep her eyes shut any longer. When she went out with her mates, she dressed up, did her makeup, and tried to flirt. At parties, she was rarely alone. She could always be found talking to some guy in a cosy corner, or dancing, head-to-shoulder and waist-to-hand with someone. But it never went any further. If she was lucky, she would get a kiss. Amanda figured that she must have a big flashing sign over her head that she was unaware of, which read ‘this girl’s a laugh, she good for passing the time at parties with, and your mates will respect you if they see you dancing with her. But DO NOT ask her out, she’s not that kind of girl’. She didn’t want to belong to the people anymore, acting as a filler at parties. She wanted to belong to one guy. Most people didn’t understand why she was always moaning about being alone. Those who didn’t really know her only ever saw her from a distance, with a new guy draped over her at every party, constantly being flirty. But she felt that guys needed her attention, her company, rather than wanted her. And she didn’t like that.

Her friend Kat was totally different. She had always been lucky with guys. She was quite pretty, but very unassuming. And yet, she was never without a guy. She jumped from one serious relationship to the next, hardly having time to fix her perfect black bob in between. She met her boyfriends in the most ridiculous places - not just at school, but on the bus, in McDonalds, in an art gallery...even when she was visiting her grandma in hospital! Guys couldn’t resist her charms. Amanda tried to copy some of Kat’s techniques, but the truth was, Kat didn’t have any. All she had to do was be herself. Just lucky.

Even her little sister Nonni had a boyfriend, although they were still too young for it to be serious. To be honest, Amanda didn’t see what made her so repulsive. She was alright-looking, well groomed, funny, smart, and independent. What was not to like?

One day, Amanda was lying about on the sofa, texting some friend of a friend who she kind of fancied. Although she knew that this was just a desperate and futile exercise, she was still filled with hope that it might go somewhere. Her little sister came in. “Who you texting? Is it your boyy-frieendd?” Amanda tried not to be hurt by her sister’s sarcastic sing-song tone. “Go away, Honour.” “Don’t call me that!” she screeched. “Gimme!” She tried to wrench the mobile out of Amanda’s hands. “Stop it Nonni! Leave me alone!” They wrestled each other for a while. Suddenly, the phone pinged. Amanda jumped, giving Nonni just enough of an advantage to grab it. Amanda started to shout at Nonni, but the words stuck in her throat. Her outstretched hand grew limp and fell to her side. She stared at Nonni’s face as she watched her scan the text. Nonni handed back the phone, all wide eyed and innocent, but still smiling slightly impishly. “You’ve got a text.” Sighing, Amanda read the text, and felt the familiar feeling of her heart sinking. She smiled wryly, almost welcoming the disappointment.

Listen mands, i dno wer u goin wiv this bt i already hav a gf so if u want anythin lyk dat ur barkin up da wrong tree. We can just be frends rite? X

She threw her phone onto the floor and walked over to the house phone. Sighing, she dialled Kat’s number.

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