The next morning, Connor and I walked together to English talking about how Ellie ignored me all morning. We both found our seats, saying our hello’s to our friends. People gave us weird looks, realizing how odd it was that Connor and I were friendly with each other. Connor placed his stuff on the desk, immediately opening his notebook to the long paragraph written about me.
I glanced at his paper, “What embarrassing stuff did you write about me, huh?”
He chuckled, “Just what I learned this week. How about you, get any good stuff about me?”
I shrugged, smiling, “You’ll find out soon enough.”
Connor got comfortable in his seat, placing his arm around the back of my chair. “So, do you want to go on a date tonight?”
I looked at him wide eyed, “You’re kidding, right?” He shook his head, his expression showing how serious he was. “Connor, I like you, but I don’t think I could go out with you.”
He shrugged, “Why not?”
I nodded my head towards him, “You know, that thing.”
He glanced down at himself, “What are you talking about? Oh, you mean just me in general?”
I sighed, leaning my head back. “No, not really. It’s just-”
“You still think of me as the school fuckboy.”
I started tapping my pen against my leg, “It’s kind of hard not to when everyone looks at us when we’re together, wondering if we’ve slept together yet.”
He sat up in his chair, “I thought you trusted me by now.” Mr. Porter walked in, heading over to his desk so I quieted my voice.
“I do trust you, but that’s going to take way more trust and also you’d need to get yourself tested.”
He scoffed, “Well, so do you then.”
I raised an eyebrow at him, “Why are being so rude about this all of a sudden?”
He faced forward, paying attention to Mr. Porter. “Just being the common fuckboy, babe.”
“Good morning, students! Are we ready to read some papers?” There was a loud, collective sound of groans, making the teacher laugh. He chose two people to go first, giving everyone else hope that they wouldn’t have to read today. As the one person started to read aloud the biography of their partner, Connor chose to continue his fuckboy act. He placed his hand on my thigh, which resulted in me pushing his arm away. Then he went on to scoot his chair closer to mine, and I figured if I did something about this, I’d get in trouble.
By the time the first few people had finished reading, I offered up to go next. Connor scooted back a bit, surprised that I’d want to read voluntarily. Mr. Porter realized there was something going on, but he just sat on his desk and waited. I leaned forward in my chair, reading my entire paragraph but changing the last sentence.
“After this whole week, learning how normal and cool he was, I realized he’s still the same person as before we got stuck to do this paper together.”
There was awkward clapping from the students, then Connor took the opportunity to go next. He stood up out of his chair dramatically. “I’ll go next.”
Mr. Porter started to get up, “Connor, I don’t think that’s a good idea right now.”
Connor stopped him, “No, it’s a perfect time. She said what she wrote, and now I get to. We were partners after all, we should read our papers together.”
Mr. Porter spoke, “Connor, stop it-”
“I’m going to read now.”
Mr. Porter understood he wasn’t going to win that argument, so he sat back down. I leaned back in my chair, still playing with my pencil.
“You know what, screw the paper, I’ll just go off the top of my head. Elizabeth Morgan, everyone. Seventeen years old, beautiful, great personality, except for the fact that she leads people on. When we started this project, she hated my guts and I liked her. Great match, teach. She thought I only wanted to get into her pants, but little did everyone know, I actually really liked her for a while now. Except, I didn’t know how to approach her normally and actually ask her out, until recently that is. As this week progressed, we built a friendship which was new to me with a beautiful girl like her. I thought to myself, maybe she really just wants to know the real me, and ignore what the whole school thinks. But now that this project is over, she’s back to thinking I’m just the school fuckboy.”
“Connor Owens! Step into the hall please.”
He leaned over the desk, making sure his face was in mine. “How was that, babe?”
I rolled my eyes, looking away. Mr. Porter stopped at the doorway, “Elizabeth, can you join us out in the hall as well.”
I thought it was unfair that I was being called out for this too, but I kept my mouth shut and followed Connor.
“The rest of you students, just talk amongst yourselves.”
Mr. Porter shut the door, walking us down the hall a bit. “I don’t know what’s going on with you two, but I’m sick of it. You two can stop with this childish behavior in my classroom. If you don’t, you’ll have detention. I’m sure your soccer coaches wouldn’t be impressed if they heard you both couldn’t go to your practices.” Connor and I both started to protest, but Mr. Porter was quick to shut us up. “I don’t want to hear any of it. Now get back in class and don’t talk with each other. I suppose two seniors are able to do that without causing a scene?”
We looked at one another then nodded.
A week had passed by with improvement of my relationships with Ellie or Connor.
Lunches were extremely awkward. I sat at Ellie’s and my usual table alone. Ellie walked in, glanced over at me, then went to sit with someone else. Connor walked in, then went to sit with his guy friends without even looking over to me. I shrugged to myself, taking out some homework. Now is probably one of the best times I could do it, since I have food and no one to distract me. I thought to myself too soon because right as I set my work out, Elijah slid into the seat across from me.
“Hey, Elizabeth. Are you alright?”
I looked up, “Yeah, why wouldn’t I be?”
He shrugged, taking one of my tater tots, “I didn’t know how you’d be taking this whole loner thing. Thought I’d stop by and tell you I’m still your friend.”
I let out a small laugh, “Thanks, I’m okay though, don’t worry too much about me.”
Elijah sighed while standing back up, “Awesome, I also came over to tell you that even though you and Connor are having issues or something, you’re still able to practice before soccer with us. We’ll make sure there is no drama on that field while you’re on it.”
I nodded my head, “Thank you, Eli. I’ll see you after school then.” He smiled and nodded in return before heading back over to his table.
Only about 4 more long hours until I get to go home.