Chapter 3

                The next day at school was painful for Amy. She walked alone in the hallways, sat alone in her classes, and ate alone in the cafeteria. With her arms firmly crossed around herself and her headphones implanted into her head, Amy tried her hardest to get through her day.

It wasn’t easy though. No one seemed to want to interact with her that day. Even the teachers didn’t pick her when she raised her hand to answer. Amy couldn’t help but think that she’d become hated by the entire school because no one would acknowledge her presence even when she was right next to them.

                Maybe it was that her bad mood that was sending them away but it still hurt. Either way she felt worse and worse as the clock ticked away. She couldn’t help but mentally replay the events with her and Liv. It hurt her to see her best friend freak out in such a way. They’d never fought like that before; they’d never even once had an argument that would have made Liv so angry.

                Amy just couldn’t understand what had happened. She hadn’t technically done anything wrong. It was normal for them to be able to enter each other’s homes without knocking.

                It just didn’t make sense. It frustrated Amy almost as much as losing Liv did. It was a mystery, a puzzle, a jumble of information that didn’t actually fit together in a logical way. And she hated puzzles. H-A-T-E-D; hated puzzles because she didn’t like having to guess their outcome. She felt worried, frustrated, like a carpet had been pulled out from under her and she hadn’t seen it coming.

                It wasn’t until third period that someone spoke to her. Unfortunately it wasn’t who she’d hoped for. Amy sat back in her chair, letting the tension of another conversation with Liv leak from her spine with an angry groan. “Hi,” she stated. She didn’t have the energy to go gaga over Chris this morning. In fact, she didn’t even really want to talk to him.

                “Hey,” he said right back, ignoring the anger and frustration in her voice as he sat down with his feet hanging over the side. He was probably prepared to leave, Amy guessed self-consciously.

                She lifted her head though, giving him the benefit of the doubt when her face went pale. Despite her mood of depression and loneliness he was still very good looking. It seemed to get her every time. It was too bad that he had such an abnormally large ego for thinking that she would rather kiss him than have bragging rights.

                He placed his cafeteria bought lunch on the table and began the conversation easily, “I just saw you sitting over here by yourself. Do you want to come sit with us?” he asked pleasantly. But even through the nice complexion, his smug smile still shone as brightly as it had the first day and it annoyed Amy.

                She shook her head, trying to clear the thought while also answering his question. She didn’t want to bring down their moods nor did she need him hitting on her every ten seconds when she felt so terrible. Even if she did want company, she wanted closure or an explanation even more and Liv wouldn’t even think about talking to her if she was sitting at the menacingly cool crowd’s table.

                “Thanks,” she said, lifting Chris’s hope a little bit more than she’d meant to, “But no thanks. I’m not in the mood.”

                Chris was swift to reply, resting his hand on hers smoothly. “Why? Do you need someone to talk to? A shoulder to rest on? Lips to kiss?” he asked again, pursing them as if it were so easy to change her mind. Obviously, Chris knew nothing about Amy.

                She wished she could react like a normal human being and laugh at his lame attempt to hit on her and make a joke but she couldn’t enjoy it when she felt so terrible. In fact, having him try to take advantage of her with his molten brown eyes and messy but perfect hair wasn’t fair and angered her in the slightest.

                “No thank you,” she said again with gritted teeth. She ran her hand through her blonde hair quickly, a nervous habit that she’d never fully gotten rid of, and looked at the door instead of at him.

                Chris raised his hands defensively, knowing when it was his time to leave. “Look,” he said wisely, and what came out next Amy didn’t expect, “Whatever is making you mad or sad – or both,” he said before Amy could interject, “Just forget about it. Life is too short to waste thinking about the negative.”

                Amy smiled ruefully, the grin not quite climbing her face as it should.

                And with that, Chris took his tray with a boyish expression and left her to chew on her carrot stick and drink her diet coke. He was right, she thought to herself. But as well as she knew that, it didn’t help. It didn’t stop Liv from acting the way she did, what had happened, or her waves of worry that crashed into her mind with every breathe. Why was it like this?

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