A Little Taste of Heaven

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"I'm frozen." (1)

Going to school in gloomy weather with upbeat pop songs on the radio doesn’t match at all. The mood is light, though, and it’s a good start. When we arrived at school, the rain was already showering, and Viktor pulled out the umbrella to escort the twins inside the middle school building. When Viktor pulled up in front of the high school gates, he was about to get the umbrella, but I stopped him and insisted on walking in the light rain since it’s just a couple of steps to the main doors! I grabbed my things and walked my way to the front doors. As I head to the building, I see Nate sitting, waiting for someone or something, in the shed by the football field. I can’t help it, but my lips curve at the view.

From: Me 11/18/2010 7:42 AM

Hey, don’t look now, but I think someone’s behind your back.

And sent! I open my umbrella, take a deep breath and approach him. Just tease and greet him and probably laugh at him with my lame joke. But when I draw close to him, guess who blocks my path?

“Good morning, Mariana?” greets Ryan, with a smile so bright, the grey clouds may part.

I fix the sling of my bag on my left shoulder and fake a smile. I’m good at it, don’t worry! “Oh, hey, Ryan,” I greet back, and then I walk aside without waiting for his next move.

Ryan catches up. “Whoa, whoa, whoa, hold up, are you mad at me?”

I glance at him, puzzled, as I shake my head. “Of course not, why would you think that?” and peek at the shed. Nate is not there anymore. I try not to frown.

The rain picks up a bit.

“Well, it seems like you’re avoiding me,” he says as I look around for Nate. “I swear, Mariana, I’m gonna make it up to you.”

I stop looking at my surroundings and smile at him, pulling him inside my umbrella. “What? No! Come on, Ryan, you don’t owe me anything, it’s alright.”

He smiles and holds the handle high for both of us, “you sure?”

I nod, “absolutely!”

We walk towards the massive doors, and he opens them for me. Now, safe from the rain, he closes my umbrella and hands it back to me. Without thinking clearly, I walk a little fast to my locker, hoping Ros, April, Nicole, Kayla or any of them to show up! When my head clears from the thoughts of clouds, I realize how much I want to be away from Mr Dreamboat. I know this is not the 1960s, but he is. It bothers me since the eyes of his admirers are, well, not very welcoming.

He walks by my side, matching my speed as he smiles and greets back to our schoolmates who were saying hello to him. I’m almost at my locker when my cell phone suddenly blows up with April’s ringtone. OH, THANK GOD! I fish it out almost immediately, and it flies out from my grip and drops loudly on the floor. Ryan picks it up for me and answers the call. The nerve!

“Hey, April!” says Ryan, flashing his smile and winking at me as I try to get my phone from him. But he keeps on dodging me. “Yup, of course, she’s here.”

I snatch my phone and shove him. “What’s up, April?” I say, catching my breath. I open my locker and grab anything I can to put in my bag; I have no idea why I went straight to it, to be honest.

“Ros calls for an emergency meeting,” she says on the other line. “I figured you didn’t see the text she sent to the group, so I called you. I’m on my way to our homeroom, by the way.”

I nod and close my locker, “yup, me too.”

“Sooooooo? How was your date with Ryan?!” April sings. “Tell me, tell me, tell me, tell me!”

Ryan is still walking beside me with a smile when I look up at him. As if he’s showing an ’I’m not going anywhere till you forgive me’ look.

“Nothing happened,” I say. “I’ll tell you everything after the meeting.”

April’s voice still barks in protest as I end the call.

“I’m not completely sure when you say you’re not mad at me,” he says, head hanging low enough that he can still see the pathway.

I stop walking, and I face him with a sigh. “But I am not mad, Ryan. If you keep doing that, I might truly be. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go.” I force a sweet smile. I haven’t done this in a long time. I figured, now’s a perfect chance to do it.

Convinced at my words, Ryan beams at me.

I can’t believe this tactic still works!

What surprised me next is he held my right hand, and my body froze at his touch. “Here, let me carry your bag,” and takes it from my shoulder. Annoyed, I stopped him midway from getting my bag. “Is there something wrong, Mari?” He asks as he tries to reach my other hand to hold it as if reassuring me everything was fine.

I pull my hand away from his grip and step back. “Ryan, I can carry my own weight.” I exhaled loudly, “and you know, I can go to my room on my own.”

I know he’s taken aback when his expression changed from happy to forcing himself not to frown in uncertainty. But, he still tries to hide by using his bedazzling smile. “I insist! It’s my first attempt to make it up to you from yesterday if you please just let me.”

I shrug. “Fine, be my guest.”

Put our servants to the test!” he sings.

I look at him, cringing, and shake my head.

He laughs and follows me up to my homeroom. I can feel the stares and glares of Ryan’s admirers boring into me, but duh, I don’t care. The only thing that bothers me is: where has Nate gone off to?

When we are in front of my homeroom door, “thanks,” I say, placing my bag on the nearest chair.

I notice my classmates are there already, and they all look at me with Ryan. I see April as if she wants to jump on her seat and Ros controlling her smile from going up to her ears.

Ryan waves at them and then turns to me and says, “I’ll see you later, my dear,” then he snuck a kiss on my knuckles as he quickly grabs my hand and runs off like a wanted criminal. That sneaky son of a bitch.

Before I could react, I heard groans and squeals from my classmates. April is the loudest, of course. I absentmindedly waved at him and headed to my seat, “alright, nothing to see here.” And gestures my hand, “Ros, please start.”

On cue, Ros starts stating the plan for tomorrow. I can see her holding her excitement about what just happened with Ryan. But the event thrills her more as she tells how proud she is of us for nailing every task she had given. She makes some final adjustments and gives the assignments for us and ends the meeting. The theme this year is the 20th century! I love it! So, our setting for the freshmen tomorrow is… 1900-1919!!! I am so excited I might burst! I adore vintage! Our booth and homeroom will be holding up an Edwardian style café, from different types of pastry to tea and coffee! Oh, I just love everything! Now, I remember why it was, or is, such a big deal to Ros because we got the most complicated and most ambitious set-up. If I have to dig into my brain, recalling what the other homerooms did will be a failure. It was such a shame I never took any pictures when it occurred. Hey, what do you know?! Now, I can photograph everything from my own lens finder! Oh, gosh, I just — ah! All this waiting is torturing me!

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