On the way back from the spot on top of the hill, we didn't talk. It was a comfortable silence now, however. It was peacful. I liked the unpredictability of being with Jonah. I could never know what he was going to say. He could either say nothing or say something so thought-felt and perfect that I would start to wonder if he could read my mind. I had yet to see him smile, though. But it wasn't like he'd seen me smile. Both of us didn't show much emotion, and for some reason I felt more comfortable around him because of that. I didn't feel pressured to smile really big or laugh or anything, because more likely than not, he wouldn't be either.
"Do you usually drive around at night?" I asked randomly.
He glanced up at me before returning his gaze to the ground. "Uh, no, actually."
"Oh? So tonight was like a one-time thing?" I asked, dissapointed for some reason that I wouldn't be able to see him again. It surprised me how much I wouldn't mind spending more time with him. I was usually very anti-social.
"Not really sure. I guess we'll just have to see. Do you do this every night?"
"What? Go to the spot on the hill?"
"No, walk around."
"Didn't you ask me that earlier?"
"No, earlier I asked you if you did it often, now I'm asking if you do it every night," he clarified.
"Um, yeah I do."
"Every night? Why? Isn't it exhausting?"
"How do you stay awake in your classes?"
"I don't, really. Don't you see how much Mrs. Robertson gets on me?"
"Yeah," he admitted, "she seems to hate you a little bit."
I snorted, "More than just a little bit."
It fell quiet again as we walked up to his car. I stared at it, wanting it to dissapear. I didn't want this night to end. Jonah seemed different, not like he had at school. He seemed more approchable and friendlier.
"Well, tomorrow you can sleep in," Jonah said.
"Why is that?"
"Because tomorrow's Saturday."
"Oh, right. I forgot."
"Yeah, well, maybe you won't be too tired."
Scratching the back of his head, he glanced from me to his car.
"Why do you sit alone at lunch?" I blurted out.
"At lunch, why do you sit alone?"
"I guess I could ask you the same question."
"Yeah, I guess you could."
He nodded and didn't make any move to answer my question.
He looked at me and raised his eyebrows questioningly.
"Why do you?"
He shrugged, somethin I was quickly getting used to him doing. "Who else would I sit with?"
"Your friends, maybe?"
He just looked at me. "Why don't you sit with your friends?" he asked.
Maybe some other time I would've been embarrassed to admit that I had none, but with him it felt okay to just say the truth. I didn't feel like he would judge me for it. "I don't have any," I said, looking him straight in the eye.
He cocked his head, seeming surprised. "None?"
"What kind of question is that? Who would want to be friends with the 'Girl-With-Weird-Eyes'? Who would want to be seen sitting with the girl who probably made up her own father's death? They say I did it for attention, you know. They say that he probably skipped out of town the moment he saw my 'ugly ass'," I said harshly. I remembered how horrible it used to be. The taunting. The teasing. The laughing. It never stopped. I finally looked up to see Jonah's reaction.
He was frowning. "What's wrong with your eyes?" he asked.
"They're freakishly green. They're weird. They're not normal. They used to tell me I looked like a witch, when I was little. The kids, I mean. That's what they would say."
He shrugged. "They look normal to me."
And I wasn't sure what I was expecting, maybe a comment on how they actually were unusual or something. But when he said that, I felt like...smiling? It was an emotion that I had long ago forgotten. The comment wasn't much, but it was somehow exactly what I needed to hear. Jonah's face had softened and had taken a certain gentle look to it.
"Does stuff like that happen alot?" he asked.
"Stuff like what?"
"Um, like how that one guy pushed you or the girl knocked over your binder, stuff like that?"
"Uh...not like, all the time. Just every once in a while."
"Why don't you say anything?"
"It doesn't help, fighting back. It only makes it worse. Trust me, I've learned."
He shrugged. "In my old school," he said, "they used to do stuff to me like that all the time."
He was relating to me. He wasn't pressuring me to talk about anything I didn't want to talk about. This boy, the mysterious new boy named Jonah, was absolutely amazing at making me feel comfortable. "They would push you?" I asked.
"Yeah, and other stuff. It used to make me really mad."
"Is that why you moved?"
He looked up at me. "No."
And suddenly his guard was back up. I could feel it, the wall between us. I was starting to wonder if that's what it was like being with Jonah, half the time he's open and half the time he's guarded. I nodded and looked away.
"I guess I should go," he said.
"Yeah, it's probably pretty late."
"Need a ride home?"
"Um, yeah, actually, that would be nice." I climbed into his car and noticed how clean it was. It smelt like mint and another smell that I couldn't quite put my finger on. All I knew is that it smelt good.
I told him where my house was, and a couple minutes later he pulled up in front of it. I sat there, staring at my dark house. My mom was still asleep. She hadn't noticed I was gone. Glancing at the clock in the car, I realized that it was almost four.
"Whoa, is that really the time?" I said.
Jonah glanced at the clock and then back at me. "Yeah."
"Okay, well, thanks for the ride," I said, getting out.
He nodded as I closed the door. I turned around and walked up my drive way. Glancing back, I noticed that he was still sitting there. Was he waiting until I safely got into my house? If so, that's really sweet of him. Sweet? Since when did I use the word 'sweet' to describe boys? I opened the door and slipped in. Closing it behind me, I peeked out the window. Jonah was just then pulling away. Letting the curtain fall back in its place, I let a small smile slip onto my face.