JASMINE

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Chapter 11 - Teachers New Pet

Jasmine


At 5 am sharp, Mr. Enrique was at my front yard, looking sporty. He was wearing shorts and a tank. He looked so boyish.

It made me feel warm inside. Of course, he had no expression. Just the usual one of annoyance by my presence.

I wore a black joggers pant with matching sweater. I was ready for my walk with my teacher.

“Good morning,” I said.

But Mr. Enrique only nodded and proceeded to walk briskly. I tried as hard as I could to keep up with him. I was struggling. My heart was racing one million bits per minute, and I felt like I was going to pass out.

“Waaaaiiit….huhhuhhuh…Sir…waaitt for me,” I wheezed.

Slowing down a bit, he paused, wiping the sweat from his face using his thumb.

“Take a minute, Jasmine. Check your heart rate.”

“With what, sir?”

“Don’t you have a smart watch, young lady?”

“No sir,” I said.

He rolled his eyes.

We walked for almost an hour. Each time he would keep looking at his wrist. We hardly spoke to each other. He was focused on the road and on his steps. What a health freak.

I hadn’t had such vigorous exercises in a long time. You could imagine the pain in my ankles. My thighs started to itch. I guess the fat that was stored there for so long finally started to break away.

I liked being in the company of Mr. Enrique. Such a sexy Latino. If only I was attractive or even his age. But if only never wins a war.

“ One hr, 37min, 4 sec…That’s how we did Jasmine. Tomorrow we will do the same route and try to do it in quicker time each time.”

“Yesss, yesss…I said breathlessly.”

How much quicker could we go? This man was on a mission to see the last of me.

“Thank you, sir,” I said running into my yard, opening my gate, not even looking back to see his face.

As soon as I got home, I crashed into the couch. It took a while for me to catch my breath. The sweat was dripping all over my body. I could feel water running down my back and between my thighs.

Once my heart rate stabilized, I went upstairs and jumped into the shower. It was a bit early, so I decided to rest for a half an hour.

My body felt so achy. I never knew walking could make someone feel like the victim of a stampede of elephants.

I closed my eyes and could not remember a thing until my mom came banging on my door.

“Jazzz, your father is in the car waiting. Why aren’t you even dressed?”

Mom sounded irritated. She sometimes gets that way when I am lackadaisical. Which by the way is every day?

Mom didn’t wait for me to answer, so my response bounced off the bedroom door. She slammed it so hard it shook my eardrum.

I jumped out of bed. I had already showered, and I made my way to the car. I skipped breakfast. I figured I could get a smoothie at school.

I realized that I’d not thought about Vaughn very much. The pain was slowly going away. Or so I believed. Point is, the terror that I’d felt on my way to school for the past few days was not there anymore.

“I noticed you went walking, Jasmine,” dad murmured.

“Yes, my teacher said that I could join him.”

“That’s something I’d tried encouraging you to do a long time ago, baby girl. I am proud of you,” he said smiling.

I didn’t want dad to see me blush. But I was blushing because it takes a lot to get a compliment from daddy.

As I got out of his car, I realized my body was still quite sore. I walked into the school yard, with a little more confidence.

Let me just be honest with you all…Mr. Enrique was on my mind.

I had his Spanish class first thing this morning. He was the first person I saw when I woke up, now we are seeing each other again.

And even though this crush is one-sided, or just in my head, it is a getaway from Vaughn and his demon friends.

“Well, look who’s here,” I heard one of Vaughn’s friends shout across the hallway.

I turned around to see who it was. They all were laughing, so I wasn’t sure who’d said what.

Vaughn had a smirk on his face too. But when our eyes met, sadness crept over him.

As I walked past them, I slipped my headphones in my ear, drowning out the sound of the bullies.

Before I knew it, I was walking into my classroom. I pulled out my ear plugs and sat quietly at my desk.

The rest of the students were making their way to the classroom. Chatting and being rowdy as usual.

Two minutes later Mr. Enrique’s presence caused an abrupt pause to all the whispering.

“Good morning class,” he said, walking to my desk.

My hands instantly became sweaty. He had a small bag in his hand.

“Hello Jasmine. This belongs to you.”

He didn’t wait to hear my hesitant “thank you.” Instead, he walked back to his desk, informing everyone that he was giving a surprise test.

The entire class was in an uproar. Not me. I was opening that bag.

When I looked inside, I realized it was a smart watch.

“Cooooolll….,” I said, smiling.

I looked in his direction and detected a faint smile on his lips.

“Thank you,” I whispered, only moving my lips.

Mr. Enrique gave me a small ‘you’re welcome’ nod.

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