Slumping into the chair opposite Molly, I laid my head on the table and groaned. I was exhausted. I had worked until 8pm last night, later than usual, because Mr Jackson wanted me to have all of his things organised for the long weekend. After that I'd stayed up writing an Italian essay, and finishing my English homework.
"What kind of chair do you think you are?" Molly asked me.
"A rocking chair." I answered tiredly. Hopefully I would get an early night tonight, since I had a two hour car journey tomorrow after school. I was super nervous about the retreat, but too tired to worry about it right now.
"Argument?" I just had to get through lunch and my last class of the day, maths. Today has not been the best of days.
"Rocking chairs are fun. I can feel like an old lady. I can stare wistfully out the window and it moves - do I need to say any more?" I mumbled into my arms. A headache had started growing in my last class, and it was only getting worse.
"Yeah, I think a rocking chair would suit you. I'm thinking I'd be a kitchen stool, but like one of those cool ones that people up cycle and paint all pretty and bohemian." Molly said, and I could hear some shuffling on her side of the table. Nodding into my arms in agreement, I winced when something jolted the table. Lifting my head from my arms, I found Jared sitting on the seat next to Molly, his arms draped over her shoulders. She rolled her eyes and shoved him off. I lowered my head back into my arms and closed my eyes.
"What kind of chair do you think you'd be?" I heard Molly ask Jared, as someone filled the seat beside me. Assuming it was Seeley, I didn't bother lifting my head. I wasn't surprised they were sitting with us, despite it being the first time it had happened. I'd seen the way Jared had been looking at Molly, and where ever Jared was, Seeley was never far behind.
"What?" Jared asked, and I let out a muffled groan. Molly was going to lose her temper.
"I'd be an armchair." A voice said quietly from beside me, confirming that it was Seeley. I could see him being an armchair. It just suited him.
"I agree." I mumbled into my arms.
"I don't get it. Why are we chairs?" Jared asked, and Molly huffed.
"It doesn't matter, moron. You'd be one of those tiny, uncomfortable triangle stools that people take camping and leave behind." Lifting my head, I saw Jared was slumped in his chair, huffing. I took out my scrunchie and redid my low ponytail, glancing around the canteen. A few people were staring at us openly, and I shifted uncomfortably in my seat. Despite being exhausted, this week has been pretty good, as far as weeks can go. I haven't seen Ross, and Molly said he's been off school all week. I haven't seen Gregor either, which sucked. I wanted to thank him. I was super grateful for him and his timing.
"Are you ready for this weekend?" Seeley asked me, leaning back with his arms crossed.
"I'm not sure, I'm really nervous. What should I expect?"
"It's not a big deal, but it's pretty outdoorsy. Bird watching, fishing, boat rides, campfires, that kind of stuff." I smiled.
"That sounds pretty cool, how many people are going?"
"Last year there was 13 of us, but I think this year it's down to 11, I think." That wasn't a lot, I could handle 11 people. I breathed a sigh of relief.
"Is there anyone else our age going?" I was, however, concerned that we'd be crazy outnumbered by middle aged lawyers. I couldn't rely on Seeley the entire trip.
"Annalise is coming, she's two years older than us. But I, uh, don't think she'll be spending very much time with us." Seeley's lip twitched, but I didn't question it. There was a shout across the canteen, and all four of us turned our attention to the sound. A crowd was forming, huddling in a circle around something. Molly rose to her feet, Jared behind her. Curious to see what it was, I followed behind them as they walked towards the crowd. I could sense Seeley towering over me from behind, which was comforting.
"Fuck! You!" A voice shouted, and Jared shoved through the crowd, me and Molly trailing behind him with Seeley behind us. I gasped as we got to the edge. Gregor was standing in the opening, his cheekbone bruised and his lip busted. Ross was opposite him, clutching his stomach and slightly hunched over. His nose was bleeding heavily, his nose and eye blackened from bruises. The bruises must be from Saturday night. I winced as Gregor threw another punch at Ross, before he shoved his way through the crowd and stormed off.
Stepping backwards slightly as the crowd started to disperse, I glanced over and saw Jared and Molly were talking in hushed voices. Looking back at Ross, who was now on his knees, I almost felt sorry for him. He spat out a mouthful of blood and lifted his head, his eyes meeting mine. His lips twisted into a smirk, blood smudged across his chin. The hatred in his eyes made me stumble back a step with tears pricking my eyes. I backed into Seeley's chest, and jumped at the contact. Turning to face him as I tried to blink away the wetness, Seeley looked down at me with a frown. Instead of heading towards Ross, Seeley took a tentative step towards me, slowly opening his arms. I buried my head in his chest and placed my arms around him as he hugged me back, turning us to face away from Ross.
And I wasn't scared, or embarrassed, or claustrophobic or self conscious. It was nice. I felt safe.
i hate this a lot but deal with it :/
YOU ARE READING
"Did he hurt you?" I shook my head under Seeley's massive palm. "Did he touch you?" I shook my head again, the nervous feeling in my stomach somehow disappearing. "Did you want him to kiss you?" These were all said through gritted teeth, but I could...