The Secrets of Sydney Forest

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 6 (v.1) - The Project Partner

Submitted: August 31, 2012

Reads: 30

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Submitted: August 31, 2012

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“It’s PARTNER TIME, guys!” my English teacher, Mrs. Glover, said. She was a sweet, cheerful lady. The kind of teacher you could always count on.

It was 3rd hour, and I was sitting in English class. We all just kind of stared at Mrs. Glover. I smiled and shook my head. Ha, my turn!

“In pairs, you will be doing a project on a god or goddess from Greek mythology, to follow up our reading of the Odyssey,” she continued. “Now, I’ve assigned you your partners…”

Groans from the class.

“Alright, Brianna will be with Evelyn, Garrett with Dylan, Ross with Courtney…”

Of course.

“Holly with Aaron…”

Oh, of course.

Mrs. Glover kept reading names, but I wasn’t listening. I was too busy freaking out. What was I supposed to do about this?

I looked at Courtney and Ross. Ross was frowning, but he just shrugged. Courtney didn’t seem to know what she was feeling. She was smiling and frowning at the same time.

Aaron was looking at me, I could tell. I didn’t want to look at him, but, you know, I did….

I met his eyes, and he smiled. Reassuringly. I relaxed. So he was my project partner. What was he going to do, kill me in class?

“This project will require you to spend time together out of school because the school board sees it fit to cut school time,” Mrs. Glover said then.

Right….

I glanced back at Aaron. He gave me a mischievous smile, and his eyes sparkled like he knew what I was thinking.

You know what? No, Jake was wrong. Aaron wasn’t against me. He wasn’t.

We got into our pairs and received our assignments. Aaron and I got Aphrodite, goddess of love. Fate is just hilarious….

We talked about our project for the rest of the class period. Aaron sat on top of my desk and seemed totally focused on Aphrodite. I guess I was, too. Every once in a while, though, he’d give me one of those smiles. After a while, I couldn’t help but smile, too.

I went through the rest of the day not having to think about him at all. That is, until I got to Gym at the end of the day. My gym class consists of Jake, Brett, Joey, Megan, Aaron, and a bunch of innocent, regular “mortals”. So, this was going to be fun.

When my friend Natalie and I went to grab some basketballs, Jake pulled me aside.

“So, I hear you got an interesting project partner for English,” he said right away. Oh, jeez. This would be great.

I rolled my eyes. “Yes, I did. And?”

“What are you going to do about it?” he asked.

“What exactly am I supposed to do?” I responded, frustrated.

Jake stared at me for a second. “Don’t do the project,” he muttered, looking away.

I was actually a little shocked. “I’m not going to fail because you’re afraid Aaron’s going to kill me,” I said, crossing my arms.

Jake crossed his arms too. “Ok. One, do you realize how ridiculous that sentence is? Two, I shouldn’t be the only one afraid.  And three, what do grades matter for us? Who cares?”

I was getting mad, so mad. I cared. I had always cared about my grades. Besides, he’d done this to me. He made everything normal in my life pointless. Maybe I didn’t want to be a vampire. Had he ever considered that? Had any of them ever considered that?

The thing is, I could never say that to anyone. But, it sure did build up a certain level of defiance.

I care. And I’ll be fine. Trust me,” I told him, waving my hands.

Jake’s eyes softened. “Alright. I trust you. Go ahead.” He passed me a basketball, and I went to join Natalie.

“What did he want?” she asked when I reached her.

“Nothing,” I said, taking a shot at the basket from the three-point line. It went in with a swish. So maybe there were some perks to being like this.

Spending the rest of class with my regular friends, I had a lot of fun. I was feeling pretty good as we left class.

“Hey,” Aaron called, coming up behind me. He put his hand on my shoulder, and my heart skipped a beat. In a good way…

He smiled at me. “I was just wondering,” he said. “Do you want to come over to my house today to work on the project?

My heart quite possibly exploded. I knew I was blushing. “Umm…” was all I could manage to say.

Aaron tilted his head, smiling that same little smile. “Is there something wrong with that?” he asked, a teasing note in his voice.

Hearing his teasing, I relaxed. I smiled, my face returning to normal color. “No, that’s fine. Sounds fun.”

He smiled, almost in relief, and said, “Great. We can walk. I live over on the West side.” Glancing behind me, he grinned, and his eyes sparkled mischievously. Uh, oh. Couldn’t be good.

Turning around, I saw Bryce and Jake standing a little bit away from us, not together, but both staring at us with narrowed eyes. I raised my eyebrows. Turning back to Aaron, I shrugged.

He grinned mischievously. Turning to leave, he touched my arm and whispered, “Good luck.”

Bryce shook his head and followed Aaron. Probably going to lecture him. Poor kid.

Jake stared at me for a while. “Alright,” he said finally. He shrugged and gave me a small smile. I had a feeling he’d be keeping an eye on me.

I went to my locker, which conveniently was next to Liz’s. “I’m going to Aaron’s,” I told her.

She glanced at me. “Now?” she asked.

“Mhmm.”

“Alright. Have fun,” she said and walked away. I was liking my female friends more and more.

Walking down the hall to the exit, I saw Aaron standing by a tree, talking to his sister. When I reached them, both turned to smile at me. I’d always liked Stephanie…

“Hey Holly,” she said. “You’re coming to our house?”

“Yup,” I replied. “Are you walking with us?”

She shook her head. “No, actually I’m going to my friend’s house. You guys will be alone.”

I don’t think she knew quite what she was saying.

Aaron was fighting a smile. After Steph walked away, he turned to me. “Well,” he said. “Ready to go?”

And I was. Whether I was going to die or not. Because I liked him. A lot.


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