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Short Story
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Writer Caitlyn C. Cooper
  • G: General Audiences
  • PG: Parental Guidance Suggested
  • PG-13: Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • R: Restricted
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Caitlyn C. Cooper
Sep 16, 2017
9 Mins Read
No Plagiarism!EncAzqtVaB4xf4H7LpDnposted on PENANA

I woke up in a classroom all alone. Everyone else must've gone home for the day since it was afternoon. I started getting ready to head out myself when someone walked in.copyright protection5PENANA6BlDYaoi4j

“I was wondering where you were.”copyright protection5PENANAcJGokfPNb0

It was Ian.copyright protection5PENANApfxEkfM6Eq

“What're you doing sleeping in here? The girls're already waiting outside.”copyright protection5PENANAtK2Oo0ZNj4

“Sorry. Didn't mean to keep you waiting,” I said, standing up. We exited the classroom together and headed through the halls, chatting about nothing in particular. Just video games we've been playing and stuff.copyright protection5PENANA6vNNU83KVe

We met up with the girls outside the main entrance.copyright protection5PENANAKluh0OxMVb

“Look who decided to show up,” Vicky said to me with her hands on her hips. “I think for keeping us waiting, you should buy us all ice cream cones. Except me. I demand an ice cream sundae.”copyright protection5PENANAcpWfelfd8z

“First off, buy your own ice cream,” I told her. “Second, what makes you so special that you get an ice cream sundae while everybody else only gets an ice cream cone?”copyright protection5PENANAhf453Zd6J9

“Because I'm dying for one. Literally.”copyright protection5PENANAktuOLuDihz

“Your use of the word literally offends me.”copyright protection5PENANAuuYrJcMYpV

“Don't get your panties in a bunch, Princess Grammar Nazi.”copyright protection5PENANAyHbDMeC0kl

Were there female Nazis? I wondered. There's one more thing to keep me up at night.copyright protection5PENANA9FPEuB87Up

“Yo, stop bustin' his chops, man,” Ian said, joining in.copyright protection5PENANAGpTFQCRDBh

“I can't believe he has the nerve to criticize my English when you come waltzing into our conversation like you're missing a chunk of your brain,” Vicky said, arms crossed.copyright protection5PENANAzaYKNLYpLj

“Hey, hey, whoa, now. No need to be so rude.”copyright protection5PENANALVYBzsdIA8

“You're right. I don't need to be rude.” I guess Vicky thinks that she earns brownie points for choosing to be rude as opposed to just being rude, which is something I have yet to determine is better or worse. “Just like how I don't need an ice cream sundae, but right now, I could kill for one.” And then she gave Ian a stare that said, “Preferably you. You're lucky I don't have a knife.” Then she looked over at me, her stare now saying, “Well? You paying or what?copyright protection5PENANA8hx1WoEO2g

It was easy to admit defeat when your opponent was Vicky. It was even easier considering that she was like a chihuahua that didn't know the meaning of the words “Shut up, you annoying little rat!” Besides, now I wanted ice cream, too. “I'm not against getting ice cream, but—and I'm going to make this clear—I am not, let me repeat that, not paying for your sundae.”copyright protection5PENANA5Bq4leQjEC

She wasn't too thrilled with that answer. “If you were in love with me, I bet you'd buy me the biggest bowl of ice cream in heartbeat.”copyright protection5PENANADpxB174fPE

“What kind of sap do you take me for?”copyright protection5PENANAnXVUZSjEGl

“Not the kind who knows how to treat a lady, that's for sure.”copyright protection5PENANAVMWmQhAGBe

You're a lady? Whoops! Good thing I didn't say that out loud...copyright protection5PENANAieEQQGXUVN

“Ice cream sound good to you?” Vicky asked the short-haired girl behind her who was quiet as a chihuahua that knew how to keep its mouth shut.copyright protection5PENANAziLudKmxp3

The Shrinking Violet shrinking in the background was Stacie: the girl I had my eye on. And with any luck, she had eyes for me. “Yeah. It sounds fine.” I had to lean in a little to hear her most of the time. Not that I minded, mind you.copyright protection5PENANASlPPHF7imI

“Then it's official: Colin, Stacie, and I are going for ice cream!” Vicky declared.copyright protection5PENANAxEXbuOSsIN

“Um, hello? You forgettin'bout me?” Ian said, pointing to himself.copyright protection5PENANAfh60MjL9Rb

“I wish I could forget about you.”copyright protection5PENANAcJw2yeIGw4

“I really hate you sometimes, you know that?”copyright protection5PENANAo3Jmfea7GT

I motioned Ian in a little as we began our excursion to the ice cream place three streets over and said in a voice that wasn't particularly muted to Vicky, “You know, man, I think the reason Vicky treats you so badly is because she's hiding her embarrassment.”copyright protection5PENANAVWb1WYlI7c

“What embarrassment?”copyright protection5PENANAUkWqnvF5bb

“Yes? What embarrassment?” Vicky asked, swiveling her head around, her expression saying, “This should be good. What're you waiting for? Go on.copyright protection5PENANAaAfTWv77CO

“See, if you pay attention to all the little telltale signs, you know, like talking to you even though there's no reason to talk to you, you'd realize that she's head over heals for you. She's totally got the hots for you.”copyright protection5PENANA1yKdzHbVpj

“You've got to be kidding me.” Vicky facepalmed.copyright protection5PENANA8jE4K1zp7L

“Yeah, that makes no sense at all,” Ian said. “Besides, she treats you the same way.”copyright protection5PENANABhlRaimiqY

“Nah, man, you're imagining things. She's smitten for you. You're the only one for her.”copyright protection5PENANA6swQF6xQ2X

“I'm so glad I haven't had my ice cream yet. Or else I'd be vomiting it up,” Vicky commented from the head of our three-man (and Stacie) caravan.copyright protection5PENANAaahOe1QOrX

Speaking of the only real female in our posse, Stacie didn't add any commentary aside from her little laughs that I found more endearing than they probably were.copyright protection5PENANAA3eVUoegGE

And speaking of Stacie not really being part of our ongoing conversation, Ian decided to rope her in.copyright protection5PENANAfM6MCMSaDV

“Supposing that's true,” Ian said with a tone that concerned me because it sounded like he thought it might be true, “then that means that you're the only one for Stacie.”copyright protection5PENANA7N5oCjqs8R

“Huh?!” That one sure caught Stacie by surprise.copyright protection5PENANApIVDEP2S5I

There were no objections from me, but I didn't follow his logic. “How'd you come to that conclusion?”copyright protection5PENANAxkvE78r0i4

“Think about it,” Ian started explaining. “There's two guys and two girls, right? So if Vicky and myself are the alpha couple, then you and Stacie are the beta couple.”copyright protection5PENANAVqR0OtkfVt

“That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard,” Vicky said. “There are so many things wrong with that statement that I don't even know where to begin.”copyright protection5PENANA7lb2YQR0JX

“They say there's someone for everyone, and if we were the last four people left on Earth, I think the pairings would be obvious.”copyright protection5PENANAJhifVpnnpG

“I'd rather pair up with poison ivy than either of you.”copyright protection5PENANArk6jlVMFaI

“Wow, you just lost out to poison ivy,” I told Ian. “You can't even say that you've been friendzoned.”copyright protection5PENANA8h4kk2ab3T

“You lost out, too, you know,” he reminded me.copyright protection5PENANA8Mbr17Qpug

“Yes, but I wasn't vying for her affections.”copyright protection5PENANA5VAceV81Bj

“True, but you are vying for Stacie's affections, are you not?”copyright protection5PENANAKJBO4VRe7U

Stacie went red in the face in an instant, and I think I was going a little red, too. “Uh, uh, um...” She uh-uh-umed, her eyes darting at everything that wasn't me and performing her trademark shrinking.copyright protection5PENANA8gHjHIqx8V

“Don't take that from 'em, Stacie!” Vicky cheered her on. “Give 'em a piece of your mind!”copyright protection5PENANANeQor5kz6W

Giving someone a piece of their mind meant giving someone an angry piece of your mind, but I don't think Stacie had a single atom of anger in that adorable little head of hers. She sputtered out a few sounds but gave up real quick before turning to Vicky for guidance.copyright protection5PENANATRGuFKqwZx

“Tell 'im you hate his guts!”copyright protection5PENANAr7N8ruQS2Z

“I hate your guts!”copyright protection5PENANANQdEfEJzeQ

“You wish he was dead!”copyright protection5PENANAw7HcCmW2TV

“I wish you were dead!”copyright protection5PENANAAk3otuSknV

“You'd rather cuddle up with a flesh-eating porcupine!”copyright protection5PENANAjbMwP1azBo

“I'd rather cuddle up with a flesh-eating porcupine!”copyright protection5PENANAp7w6j8tgbm

“Does she even realize what Vicky's telling her?” Ian wondered.copyright protection5PENANAbLHe9bJ2v7

“I can't believe I lost out to a flesh-eating porcupine...” I said. Or maybe it was a victory of some sort, because a Stacie trying to be angry was a cute Stacie. Dammit. I should've recorded it on my phone.copyright protection5PENANAYOiKl8LvHn

“And there you have it,” Vicky said, wrapping her arm around Stacie's shoulder and leading her on faster. “What you boys failed to consider is that maybe the only one for Stacie is me.”copyright protection5PENANAU6urcOzF4L

“...” I think I enjoyed losing out to the flesh-eating porcupine more.copyright protection5PENANA2gwKuGVeJr

Ian patted me on the back. “It's okay, man. There're plenty more girls out there. In fact”—he wrapped his arm around me and pulled me in closer than I was comfortable with, and then he waved his hand in front of us to emphasize the rest of his sentence—“there's a whole world full of pretty girls just waiting for you to meet them.”copyright protection5PENANAlHfErAMd6u

“Uh-huh...” I freed myself from his clutches. “Remember that that goes for you, too.”copyright protection5PENANAB1A6sNU2tZ

“Yeah, yeah, I know, I know,” he said. “But I'm not all that concerned with my love life at the moment. Actually, I'm not even sure how the topic started shipping me and Vicky together.”copyright protection5PENANANwfkhK0cYJ

To be honest, I wasn't sure, either. A girlfriend was maybe item No. 12 on his priority list, and the only thing Vicky seemed to be into was the pain and suffering of others. And ice cream. When she finally got her hands on her ice cream sundae (which she paid for out of her own pocket, I should add), she was happier than flesh-eating porcupine eating some flesh.copyright protection5PENANADjrTYTtK7A

.....I could've used a better analogy.....copyright protection5PENANAeIBPO3CJ56

We all got sundaes, except for Ian, who got himself an ice cream cone and marveled to Vicky the miracle that was the delicious taste of ice cream paired with a hardened waffle.copyright protection5PENANAJTCYdTId6G

While Ian subjected Vicky to his contribution to the world of gastronomy, Stacie and I made small talk about more ungastronomical topics of debate as we walked. Mainly about the sorts of toppings we like on our desserts. Nothing exciting. I liked nuts on my ice cream, and I learned that Stacie was an avid chocoholic. The more chocolate on or in something, the happier a Stacie she was, and a happy Stacie was a cute Stacie. Dammit. I should've recorded that on my phone, too.copyright protection5PENANAXK0oDYi7Jp

Chocolate wasn't my favorite thing in the world, but the more I looked at Stacie's bowl, the more delicious it looked. “Mind if I try some?” I asked, and then I tried some without waiting for her permission.copyright protection5PENANAHY7jNWmqGs

“Hey! That's mine!”copyright protection5PENANAxplany36Ma

Not anymore it wasn't.copyright protection5PENANANJUO8yMqFw

Now she really did look angry with me. Angry like a five-year-old would be angry, but angry none the less. And cute, but you already knew that. “If you're going to take some of mine, then I get some of yours.” She went to assault my bowl with her spoon, but I kept it out of reach, which wasn't difficult considering Stacie was what you might call really short.copyright protection5PENANAQnuYGiV2JB

“No fair!” She was jumping for my bowl, and I was messing with her, making it look like she could reach it this time, and then she'd reach for it, and then she'd—nope.copyright protection5PENANAvh0Rropuvc

Denied.copyright protection5PENANAFiWz647TvN

She jumped around, calling me mean and unfair and being the person I had trouble taking my eyes off of. And I didn't want to take my eyes off her. Not now, when I gave in and let her at my bowl, and not ever, for a future that would hopefully be after I said the next thing I needed to say, and I needed to say it. Unlike Vicky, who had the option of being rude, I didn't have the option of not saying this.copyright protection5PENANAqmaVkQefTX

“......Stacie?”copyright protection5PENANAQpfRgGgGbL

“Hmm?”copyright protection5PENANASQ4OqbTx4p

“I....I just wanted to let you know that—that I...”copyright protection5PENANAlvLvq5mElg

“?”copyright protection5PENANACcFR4VxkBI

“............Stacie, Icopyright protection5PENANA6tzaiZmbxq

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