n i n e t e e n

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For the first time in my life, I was scared about going to school for an entirely different reason other than it being school. For the first time, I was dreading going back because of one particular person. The very person who I was now convinced has a crush on me.

I wished the next term break came quicker, even though it probably would be worse given our trip to Gold Coast. But I rather stay home and watch paint dry than risk another chance of bumping into Daniel and being questioned why I was avoiding him for the past week after lunch at his parents house. It was bad enough that he was my neighbour.

Perhaps I was thinking too much into it. But I didn't want to take the risk of leading Daniel on when I had no feelings for him. I didn't want to hurt his feelings. I didn't want to be in that awkward situation where he tells me he likes me, and I'd panic and say something stupid.

"Wait, you're still avoiding Daniel?" Mia asked as we walked into school together.

As always, Mia was waiting for me at the train station. When I arrived, Mia literally leaped off from the bench and rushed over to me, looping her arm with mine and she practically skipped all the way to school. I still haven't figured out why she was so peppy given that we were still talking about how my break went.

"I may have been pretending to be away from my phone whenever he calls, yes, but is that technically avoiding?"

Mia frowned. "Yes! That's textbook definition of ghosting," Mia retorted.

"Well, then I guess I have been ghosting him."

We entered the school. It was halfway through autumn and already the winter chill was beginning to come in, meaning it was the time where I didn't mind wearing the school blazer to and from school like we were supposed to.

"And you're okay with that?" Mia then asked.

"Okay about what?"

"Not seeing him."

I didn't even bother asking her what she meant by that. I could already tell it was something that would embarrass me, and I'd be spending the next two minutes trying to convince Mia that she was wrong. Although it was what I did to her when she said Daniel liked me the first time, and here I am now, ninety eight percent convinced that Daniel really did like me.

"Of course, I am," I answered.

Mia sighed hopelessly, as if in defeat. "I don't know if you should avoid Daniel just because he likes you," Mia said very awkwardly. Like saying it was too hard to even fathom.

"Why not?"

Mia shrugged. "I don't know. But if you really don't like him back, I guess it's the only thing you can do," Mia added.

From Mia's expression, it looked like she wanted to say more. I was curious to know but I wasn't sure if Mia even wanted to talk about it.

"Well, enough about me. How about you? How was your break?"

Mia's face instantly brightened. "Oh my God, I've been dying to tell you. I know you'll hate me right now for not telling you earlier, but I really wanted to tell you in person," Mia said enthusiastically.

"I admit, I'm a tiny bit scared as to why you're so happy."

Mia rolled her eyes but was still smiling. "Shut up," she mumbled.

"Okay, tell me then! What happened this weekend?"

"So, Josh may or may not have asked me out."

"No, get out. He did not!"

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