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After the hallway incident it seemed as though he had made making my life as miserable as possible, like it was his fucking life goal. For months, I tried to be his friend. I would ask how his day was, brush off the irritated shut up Scarlett's from across the room, let him eat my food without asking, all for the one sliver of hope that we would be friends or even acquaintances. I tried, I really did, to not let it get to me, but much sooner than I thought, I snapped.

/ /

I was talking to Amanda, just like we do everyday in third period. She was droning on about how this guy, Ryan, was giving her crazy mixed signals. Somehow, the conversation always reverted back to Shreyas.

"I honestly don't think he actually hates you," Amanda said, picking at dirt under her nails.

"No, he actually hates me."

She rolled her eyes. "I think he's just pretending to hate you because all of his friends do."

I shrugged. "Maybe."

And the conversation went back to Ryan.

/ /

It took me two days to work up the courage to talk to him. Two long days of frustration, preparation, and nerves. And then one day of tears.

/ /

He was sitting at his desk during sixth period, the only class we have together. It took me ten minutes just to walk up to his desk.


He looked up and rolled his eyes.

"What?" he spat. That was enough to make me want to hide in a hole until senior year, but I held my ground.

"We need to talk."

"Okay." He leaned back in his chair and cocked his head.

"Outside." He groaned but followed me out of the classroom.

He looked like he was about to say something, but before he could even get a sound out of his mouth words started to tumble out of mine.

"You have been treating me like shit lately, and honestly I couldn't give less fucks about what crawled up your ass and died but nothing warrants the way you have been treating me. I know you have some personal vendetta against me, but all I have been is nice to you and I'm trying to brush off the insults, I really am, but I'm not invincible. Yeah, I like you, but that doesn't—"



I did not just say that out loud.

It took me a couple moments to comprehend what had just happened, but before I could create a tangible thought, Shreyas's deep laugh echoed through the hallway.

He was laughing at me.

If I thought I knew what embarrassment was, this was the moment that all changed. My entire body was blushing even my vision had a tinge of pink.

"You're a dick, a real fucking asshole," was the only comprehendible sentence I could get out before he stumbles back into the classroom.

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