(Author's Note: Mackenzie's point of view)
“Hey,” I greeted Cameron when we walked into the gym. I, along with everyone else, was dressed in my gym uniform. We were all standing there, waiting for Mr. Kimpton to come give us instructions.
“Hi,” he replied through clenched teeth.
“What’s the matter? You seem mad,” I said, hoping it wasn’t because he knew about what Justin and I had done yesterday. Not that we had physically done it ourselves. Kyle had been the one to put
the firecracker in Cameron’s mailbox. But Justin and I were there and that was all that mattered.
“That’s because I am mad,” he informed me. “Some idiots decided it would be funny to blow up my mailbox yesterday. They’re just lucky I didn’t see who they were.”
I let out a silent breath of relief when he said this. At least now I wouldn’t have to worry about him being mad at me. “Wow,” I said, “that sucks. People are so immature these days.”
“I know right,” he agreed. “By the way, I’m sorry again about what I did yesterday at Starbucks. That was definitely immature on my part,”
“Don’t even worry about it,” I assured him. “Forgive and forget, right?”
He smiled at me when I said this and nodded his head. “Right,”
“Alright, class,” Kimpton’s loud voice boomed. “Two laps around the gym,” I took off with the rest of the class, but Cameron stayed behind. I watched from across the gym as Kimpton approached him.
I just hoped that he wouldn’t get all mad and yell again, because it was quite obvious that Cameron didn’t take any shit from anybody. He’d most likely have a sarcastic remark which would get him
sent to the dean’s office. But when I ran past them again, Cameron was walking away from Kimpton, both of them looking pretty calm. This was definitely a good thing.
I finished up my laps with the rest of the class and Kimpton gave us orders to find a partner for our next activity. It was then that Cameron walked out of the boys’ locker room, sporting a rental
gym uniform. He walked up to me with his arms crossed over his chest, looking slightly annoyed that he had to wear a gym uniform after all.
“Partners?” I asked him. He nodded back at me and we grabbed a volleyball. “So is Kimpton gonna let you keep renting uniforms or is he still gonna make you buy one?” I inquired as I bumped the ball
back to him.
“He said he’ll let me use rental ones,” he replied.
“Oh,” I said. “Well that’s nice of him,” I was actually sort of shocked that Kimpton had done anything remotely kind. The teachers weren’t supposed to let students use over three rentals in a
quarter, but apparently Kimpton had made an exception this time.
“Mhmm,” He set the ball and it came flying back towards me. I got underneath it just in time to hit it back though. Kimpton blew his whistle, startling me a bit and making me jump. Cameron caught
the ball rather than bumping it back to me and Kimpton split the class up into two teams.
Cameron and I were on different teams, but we were both the first to sub out so we just sat against the wall together as the rest of the class played. I watched the ball go back and forth over the
net, until finally, someone missed it and it hit the ground with a soft bounce. Sighing, I glanced over at Cameron.
When I did, I noticed something that I hadn’t seen before. It was his arm. There was this light red burn mark on it. It definitely hadn’t been there yesterday. Had the little firecracker incident
accidentally burned him? I bit my lip and gently grazed my fingers over his burn.
His head jolted up when I did this and he instantly pulled his arm away. “Sorry,” I said to him. “What happened?”
He pressed his lips together, causing his mouth to form a thin line. “Nothing, it was just an accident,” he replied quickly.
“Did the firecracker from yesterday burn you or something?” I asked him.
“Um, yeah,” he said. There was something kind of weird about his voice though. Almost like he was trying to hide something. Could he have been lying to me about his burn mark? But if he was, then
“Oh,” I murmured. “Are you alright?”
“Yeah, fine,” he remarked hastily. “It’s just a little burn. It’s no big deal,”
“If you say so,” I replied, still sensing something strange about how he was acting.
“So I’m, um, excited for the game tomorrow night,” he said, obviously trying to make a subject change. I decided to just go along with it, since he clearly didn’t want to talk about where he got
his burn from any longer.
“Yeah, it’s gonna be fun,” I agreed. Honestly, I wasn’t all that excited. It was the same thing every time. Our football team lost, me and the rest of the cheerleaders cheered them on anyways, and
then a big group of us went out to eat at IHOP afterwards to celebrate yet another loss.
“Yeah, this is actually gonna be the first football game I’ve ever gone to,” he confessed. I couldn’t help but be shocked. What junior had never gone to a high school football game before?
“Did your old school not have a football team or something?”
“No, they did. I just chose not to go watch them play.”
Ok, Cameron was nice and all, but that was just straight up weird. Everyone in high school went to the football games. It was just part of being in high school. “So you didn’t even go to, like, the
homecoming game?” I inquired.
“Nope,” he informed me. “I’ve never been to a school dance either. I guess I just don’t have that much school spirit.” He laughed it off like it wasn’t a big deal, but I was still in shock.
Football games and dances were a big part of the high school experience. How could he never go to any?
“Well lucky for you, homecoming’s coming up soon. And you’re going whether you like it or not.” I told him with a smile.
He grinned back at me, looking right into my eyes. He did that a lot. “Are you asking me to homecoming?” he questioned jokingly.
“Not asking you, ordering you to go.” I said.
He laughed and let out a light sigh. “Yeah, you’re probably gonna go with Justin, right?” He turned to look at me, his eyes dulling a bit. The laughter seemed to disappear from them as soon as he
brought up the topic of Justin.
“Um, yeah,” I admitted. For some reason, I felt bad telling him this too. I kind of wanted to just lie and say that I wasn’t going to with Justin. I wasn’t sure why though.
“Yeah, I figured,” he said softly. “I don’t think I’m gonna end up going to that.”
“Why not?” I demanded. “Homecoming’s really fun. There’s food and dancing and someone always ends up sneaking in booze too.”
A weak smile flickered across his lips, but that was it. He still seemed upset. “I wouldn’t have anyone to ask,”
“So what? You aren’t required to have a date,”
“I know, but…” He trailed off at the end, sighing instead of finishing his sentence. “Never mind,”
“No, tell me,” I urged him.
“Well,” he began, looking hesitant, “there’s someone I wanna ask. But I can’t ask her.”
“Because she has a boyfriend,”
I felt a warm blush fill my cheeks as I realized what he was hinting at. He wanted to ask me. That was why he’d gotten so upset when he began talking about Justin. That was probably why he didn’t
like Justin too.
“Oh,” I murmured back to him. Things had definitely just taken a turn for the awkward. “So there’s nobody else you would consider asking?”
“Well I kind of had my mind set on this girl. I haven’t known her long, but I really like her.” I bit down on my lip, looking away from him. It was too awkward to make any eye contact with him at
the moment. That didn’t seem to faze him though. “She’s just so funny and smart…and beautiful,” he continued. “Every time I talk to her I wanna tell her that I like her, but I know I can’t.”
I really wasn’t sure how to respond to this. But luckily, I didn’t have to because at that moment, Kimpton decided to sub us both in. I was just happy to be pulled away from that awkward-as-hell
I knew that Cameron had a crush on me. He’d made it pretty obvious. I just wasn’t sure how to handle it. He knew I was with Justin so he knew he couldn’t ask me out, but would he end up making a
move on me anyways? I doubted that he would. I wasn’t for sure though.
What if he did? I’d have to tell Justin. If I was a really good girlfriend, I would just tell Justin that Cameron had a crush on me. I didn’t want to do that though. There was nothing wrong with
Cameron liking me a little bit. It wasn’t like he was threatening the relationship between Justin and I. It was a harmless little crush. So I decided to just let it go.
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