Hello everybody ^^
As always thank you to all who have reviewed, followed or favourited this story, words can't describe how happy it makes me feel when I get a single review or a follower :)
Also a shout out and a HUGE thank you to the one and only MusicallyChallenged for being a great beta for a horrific grammatically incorrect story, I don't know how I'd do it without you <3
Disclaimer: All Cassandra Clare's except Fletcher
For the first time in a long time, I feel happy, and not pretend happy. Not when you plaster a smile on your face so the people around you feel like they're boring you or feel obligated to start a conversation with you so you can feel like part of the "group" no, for once in the past few days the smile that's on my face is mine.
I try to convince myself that it's not because the guy sitting beside me is willing to take whatever we have slow, and believe me when I say I have absolutely no idea what's going on between us. I mean for all I know we could be edging closer and closer towards the back of the bleachers with his hand down my top, but that just doesn't seem right and when I glance at Fletch from the corner of my eye just relaxing against the tree even though the final bell has gone.
No he seems like a gentleman, which is both weird and endearing to think about. When I was younger it was always Izzy getting the attention, at first I was fine with it, I mean come on, she was the girl that had perfect straight black hair which never seemed to get frizzy in the rain like mine or when she had it up not one curl was out of place. I was just the little sidekick with unruly flame red hair and a bad attitude, who would ever date me?
But as soon as we hit the later years in primary school as every young girl does, she starts to take an interest in the other sex. You started wearing lip-gloss and shorter and shorter skirts with the school shirt unbuttoned as far as you could without getting suspended, at least that's what Izzy did and tried to get me to do but I was having none of it. I'd seen guys outright stare at girl's chests and not even talk to the victim, and that's when the words asshole and idiot came into my vocabulary, and I learnt that some men are just pure pigs.
So instead I went for the goody two shoes approach, I had my uniform done up properly bar the fist button because come on, we all have to breathe. Instead of playing kiss chase with all the lads I sat on the grass and read Harry Potter wondering why chasing people around making yourself sweaty and then having somebody shoving their tongue down your throat was appealing. This lead to endless bullying from all the girls calling me a chicken which I could tolerate as long as they didn't come into my space. I thought that was the worst they could call me and I kept sticking to the old line; "Sticks and stones may break your bones, but words can never hurt you" but that was until one of the guys started calling me a "Prude"
In blissful ignorance I hadn't a clue what that meant, so I didn't know if I should offended or not so I just clenched my teeth and continued reading vowing to look up the meaning when I got home tonight. I wasn't happy with the definition, I'm not scared about nudity or sexuality just preferred not flaunting the fact I have a chest. That didn't stop them calling me it every waking minute of the day, during classes I had scraps of paper thrown at my head and snickers when they see my ears turning pink in anger, this increased my hatred of the other sex except Simon who always sat near me throwing me doodles of Princess Clary and Prince Simon in our tower of peanut butter M&M's.
Glancing over at Fletcher, who has his eyes closed; leaning leisurely against the tree I can't help but wonder if he'd be like Simon or the others. His messy hair blows in the wind and I'm captivated by it just rippling in the little wind that's blowing our way, the way he's laying his face and whole body looks totally at ease no crimpling tests soon, or step-brother friend's causing problems. I can't help but smile all over again, he'd have been better than Simon, instead of helping on the side lines throwing quick smiles while staring at Izzy, something I should've picked up quicker.
Instead of just standing there, I think Fletch would have stood beside me. Laughing as Ron had to follow the butterflies dragging me off in a pretend hunt for Aragog and his brother and sister's taking my mind off the idiots and the trouble that was going to come for me later on in my primary school years. He'd have made a point of sitting beside me making the assholes leave me alone, I shake my head at myself I can't start thinking like this he's here now and I should just revel in the fact that this guy doesn't just want to hang out with me because I have a chest.
I look at him again and ponder how in the heck is he even comfortable in the position he's in, I'm about to ask when a smirk appears on his face as he says in a teasing voice; "New Girl, I know I'm absolutely adorable and should go up for modelling, but it's rude to stare. Even at me" eyes still closed arms resting on his stomach a smirk on his face enhancing the laugh lines on his forehead and around his mouth.
My neck is the first to start blushing and I can feel the heat rising until it's at the tips of my ears, he can't see me and yet I feel so embarrassed I stutter out a; "I- I wasn't staring at you new guy, y-you might need to get your eyes checked" closing my eyes praying that this blush dies down before he opens his eyes. No such luck though because he cracks open his eyes slightly then fully his face breaking into a full on smirk worthy of a Slytherin, sitting up straight staring completely at me. "Oh wow, I made new girl blush." He says bursting into laughter.
I turn to him mouth wide open face screwed up like a four year old who hasn't got their lollipop, "Shut up!" I whine swiping at him but he just dodges and continues laughing. I leap up and grabbing a book from my bag I swipe at him wailing for him to shut up, even though by now I've started to crack up and start to giggle. I attack him with a book and he dodges it yelling out; "I made new girl blush, I made her blush. She loves me passionately and forever!"
"Oh my freaking God would you please shut up!" I beg the blush going a deeper and deeper red until I look I've stayed out too long in the sun, something I don't recommend unless you want to feel every miniscule movement you make on the burn. Fletcher just continues to laugh and duck my swipes skipping around the tree yelling it out as I try to hit him hard enough for him to shut up and stop embarrassing me completely. He turns to smirk at me and simply says; "I made you blush, I should be yelling it from the rooftops"
I shake my head, he's such an arrogant asshole and yet I'm laughing as well, much to my inner dismay; "Ok, ok yes you made me blush now shut up about it and let it go!" I beg hitting him on the shoulder with the book having no clue what class it's for. Fletcher turns abruptly invading my personal space towering over me in at least four inches making me run into him causing him to have to take a step back as I lose my footing and come like a wrecking ball face first into his body.
There wasn't any time to say anything but wait for the impact, yet I closed my eyes and put my hands to cushion our fall. That wasn't necessary though because Fletcher ends up taking all the impact with little more than an oomph, I grimace and look down at him eyes closed as well but no signs of any external pain. Quick as lightning I jump up all thoughts of a blush forgotten, I don't get very far though because hands wrap around my waist.
Yelping I look down at Fletcher who still has his eyes closed, and I panic. What if he hit his head so hard he's forgotten everything, I mean are there any signs that you've got amnesia? I'm overreacting, yet I can't help it. He's the only person I don't feel inclined to kill horribly in this school; I'm not losing him to a knock on his head. Then the hands come around my waist and I look down at him panicking wondering if I should go call someone, there's no need though because he just starts smirking and mumbles out something I can't hear.
"What? I can't hear you" I say leaning down towards him to hear him better, he just continues to smirk and says; "I got you to blush" then in the speed of lightning he jumps up grabbing my shoulders and flipping me causing me to scream in surprise and cling to his shirt in pure panic while he laughs. He puts me gently down against the tree laughing at my screwed up face and wired shut eyes as I wonder if the nightmare is over, my one fear is heights, can't stand them give me cold hard ground any day thank you very much.
"I was saying I got you to blush, but this is even cuter New Girl" he mumbles before plonking himself down beside me and I can't help but think Yeah, definitely not Simon. After a while we walk out to the car park just enjoying being in each other's company not having to say anything to each other to make it less awkward.
We walk outside to the school car park, we walk towards the Jeep where I have to wait for the guys before heading to the gym in town, Fletch stops and stands in front of me even though he's turning left at the school entrance to start walking home. There's a moment of awkwardness where we both don't know whether to hug or…. You know. It's quickly solved though as Fletcher pulls me into a hug and he smells faintly of the aftershave he uses and something else that I can't place, one thing I can tell for certain is that he feels safe, safer than anybody I know except maybe my mother and that's weird.
We break apart both smiling, Fletcher grins saying; "I'll text you later New Girl. See you tomorrow yeah?" I nod not able to say anything because I'm still trying to come to terms with the feelings churning inside me right now, to even comprehend speaking, he grins at me, side hugs me quickly then is off on his skateboard leaving me there alone with all these feelings.
The guys and I are walking out of the school, I'm blissfully tired. I would like to believe the lie I continue to tell myself, that I'm too tired and not bothered about Clary but I know that's a lie. I can't explain it to anyone but I feel have this burning need to protect Clary against all the dicks in this school that would try hurt her. Like you, my thoughts whisper.
I shake my head blatantly ignoring the inner voice and just pay attention to the Jeep which turns out to be the worst mistake there ever was, because there's Clary and that asshole in an embrace. No sorry, they're just hugging but still I can't help my hands curling into fists as I see how comfortable she looks with his wrapped around her small frame. I turn to the others who are deep in conversation with Jon who smiles at me when we make eyes contact.
I'm secretly happy that I ratted them out but get disappointed at his reaction. Jon simply looks at their embrace and sighs a look of utter defeat in his eyes, he looks down at his shoes mumbles something incoherent and then looks back up looking me straight in the eyes and then to the other two who don't know where to actually look or how to react.
"Well, at least she finally made a friend, I suppose we have to go say hello" he mumbles moving forward as I stand there gobsmacked. I garb his wrist before he can go any further; "You realise he's probably not just her 'Friend' as you've so nicely put it" I snarl at him extremely angry at how easy he's taking this. Seb and Kyle come towards me with a warning to shut up but I just ignore it the anger I've built up tipping over.
"We don't know a thing about this guy, and you want to go over and play happy families? What the hell, am I the only one who can see how unlikely it is that they're just friends?" I growl out not letting go of Jon's hand while I try drill some sense into them. Jon just shakes his head yanking his wrist from my grip staring right into my eyes his own anger on its last training wheels.
He turns his back on us and my eyes widen in panic, I didn't mean to cause this much anger. I'm about to grab him again and apologize when he turns around his eyes betraying he's obviously not calm but he's sure trying with his body language, "We've treated her worse than dirt since she came here, and that's made it difficult for her to make friends. I, for one would like to apologize and meet her friend, player or not, she's got to find her own friends and make her own mistakes to grow up. Just like we all do" at the last bit he glares at me, sighing I nod and turn back to Clary.
He's gone, our argument must've gone on longer than I expected and I'm slightly ashamed that we let him go but way more relieved that I don't have to hear the whole unrequited love crap from him and the snickers coming from Clary. We walk over quietly everyone looking around for him but he's definitely gone, Jon throws a smile at Clary who's leaning against the Jeep playing music tapping her foot.
"Where did your friend get to?" Jon asks while throwing his bag in the back and Clary comes around to collect her gym bag. She just shrugs and says nonchalantly; "He had to go home, and I have to go to the gym, so if you don't mind" she grabs her bag replaces her earphones and starts heading towards the exit. I climb in the car silently praying that Clary know what she's doing.
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