Summer soon faded into early fall, and that was the last I saw of them. But they were always in the back of my mind. Infiltrating my thoughts, my actions. Sometimes I would imagine seeing Les and Hunter sitting at a lunch table in the cafeteria, their dark eyes on me. Waiting for me outside of the quad, their hands in their pockets and their gaze’s intent. The elder one standing behind them with his arms crossed over his chest with those piercing eyes unwavering. It was all so weird. A part of me was glad to be rid of the strange confrontations and the even stranger group of guys.
But the other part of me was racked with strange curiosity. I couldn’t get them out of my head. What were they doing in Aurora? Why were they only in town during the summer? Where in the world did they come from? So many questions were left unanswered.
Little did I know, I was about to get every one of them answered in hyper-speed.
“He’s staring at you.”
Monica’s voice was hushed- well, hushed for her. Cool ground soaked into my jeans from where we sat on the grass, a tree to our backs. The feel of its bark made my skin prick. I stared across the quad through the silver haze of day. A fine layer of mist had settled in the air.
Sure enough, there he was.
He wasn’t Hunter or Les. But there was no doubt in my mind he was one of them. It was strange to say that phrase – ‘one of them’. It felt like a science fiction movie. But he was there. Gleaming skin. Broad shoulders. But this one was different. He had light hair. Blond, like the strings of a corn husk. And light eyes that were startling to look at. Pointed right at me. Penetrating bone.
“Weird.” Monica said, chewing on the end of her nail. We both watched the boy. Waiting for him to do something, to show some sign of purpose. It was strange to see one of them around school. Their group had never come around before.
Something felt off.
He only looked at me. They all did. Every single one of them. It was off-putting. But him. He was looking at me like no one had ever looked at me before. It bewildered me. It wasn’t something of affection, like I was a piece off ass. It was…respect. Like he thought highly of me somehow. I had no idea what I had done to gain that respect, but maybe there wasn’t a reason.
Or maybe it was all in my head. Maybe he had no reason at all- none of them did. Maybe they were just messing with me. Trying to get some girl into their circle only to, what? Mess around?
Somehow they didn’t seem like the type.
“Somehow I can’t turn my eyes away.” Monica said. I didn’t say anything back. That happened a lot with us. She wouldn’t stop talking and I wouldn’t stop listening. We worked like that. “Hey you.” A voice said from behind me that I knew all too well. Looking away, I raised my eyes to see Adam Richardson, a smile on his boyish face. I could feel the blond-haired boy’s gaze tingling in my bones as Adam sat beside me, leaning over to kiss my cheek. I smiled slightly. It felt like I was coming out of a haze.
“What’s up with creepy boy over there? He can’t take his eyes off your girl.” Monica never knew how to open a conversation correctly. Somehow, I felt like I was violating some private trust between me and the boy by allowing him to be made a joke. Adam looked over at him, seeming rightfully bothered. The boy got up. Something tugged at my insides. Like I was missing a point. I watched him disappear into the mist, walking towards the parking lot.
“Huh.” Although he looked put off, Adam brushed the whole thing off. His arm slung around my shoulders, his brown eyes warm as they looked into mine. “Wanna catch a movie after school today? Perfect day for it.”
I laughed. “It’s always a perfect movie day in Aurora.”
“Which is just fine to me.” He grinned.