For alllllll the adorable banners you sent me!!
Chapter 9: Hit Or Miss?
It doesn’t work out the way it does in the movies – Marshall doesn’t carry me off the stage in his arms and the crowd doesn’t stop throwing tomatoes just because there’s a handsome guy in the scene now. Instead, the food kept coming like an endless buffet as Marshall studied me strategically. “Okay,” he said. “What now?”
An egg hit me on the back of the bum, and I answered his question with a glare. “You’re an idiot.” Luckily, some of the students who were honestly only there to witness the competition had left to get the teachers and now Buckerfield was dashing down the field blowing his whistle into his microphone. He looks something like a shaved water buffalo, but I don’t have too much time to look at him or the teachers running behind him as the crowd started to panic and run off in different directions hoping not to get caught.
In the midst of all the chaos, Marshall grabbed my wrist and pulled me along with him, but not before I caught a glance of Tyler standing in the middle of the field, unmoving, his gaze following us.
Once outside of the school campus and I could visibly see the road leading out into the main streets, I shook my wrist away from him. I’m not sure what Marshall likes to do during his spare time, but he knows a lot of winding trails, cracks, and alleys that nobody else seems to know about. Even our escape route had been highly sophisticated, jumped over the ditch behind our school, cut across a small field, sneaked into someone’s yard and then up the small hill that connected their house before cutting like an upside down V onto the main drag.
“I think we’re safe now.” It was a long jump off the rocky hillside to the dirt path on the side of the road, but Marshall managed to get down with ease before holding up a hand to help me. I didn’t take it. Instead, I sat down and lowered my legs over the edge before inching and sliding myself to the ground. “You see my hand Camila?” He asked when I walked passed him, and he remained in that Statue of Liberty type pose. “You were supposed to take it.”
I turned around and pulled his arm down to his side. “I’m not... I’m not going to thank you,” I said. “If you thought I needed saving, you’re wrong. I don’t need anyone to save me and I would have been fine by myself.”
Marshall turned to me and smiled, one that wasn’t mocking or sarcastic, but as gentle as it was patient. “I know,” he said, and that was all it took to start a wildfire at the lobes of my ears. I quickly skipped ahead of him before he can see it spread to my cheeks and then engulf my face in flames.
“Well then, if you already know, why did you still come for me?”
He laughed. “Because I’m an idiot.”
At that point, there seemed to be a mutual understanding between the two of us. He was an idiot – at least that was something we could both agree on, and when the silliness of the situation, how we looked and the cars honking in the background finally hit us, we both started to laugh.
It was the first time. The first time that the both of us laughed together, and also the first time that I felt the invisible wall that separated us shrink – not a lot, but just a little bit – enough for one day.
“Come on, let’s go find a place for you to clean up first. I’m sure your parents don’t want to see you looking like this.”
I shrugged, but after a second consideration, decided he was right. My dad was always reasonable when I beat people up at school, but if anyone touched a strand of my hair, he unlocks the cabinet downstairs and grabs his gun. I still remember how all the parents stayed and watched their kids during the first day of kindergarten. My dad was the only one who stayed and watched on the second day, and then the third and the fourth until the teachers told him he was disrupting the classroom environment by always being there. ‘Camila is in good hands,’ they tried to convince him, ‘don’t you have to go to work?’