Prologue

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I never paid much attention to Felix Bucher.

Although we had attended the same bleak secondary school, all I really knew about him was two things; Felix was part German and he didn't like books.

The later trivia was something I found out the first, and only, time I spoke to him during those years; I'd approached him in the hallway to compliment him on his surname and say that I envied him for having a name that translated to books. Far more exciting than Hill.
Felix had stared back at me, face void of expression, before telling me that actually, he didn't care much for books. As someone who had volunteered- and eventually had a paid part time employment- at the local library from the age of fourteen, I found this inconceivable.

At school, Felix Bucher had been the guy that no one liked or disliked. Easy on the eyes but not striking, quiet yet polite, a solid B-student. He didn't have any known hobbies or interests but, in all fairness, I wasn't sure anyone had ever cared to ask him about it.

Despite his lack of genuine friends, Felix got invited to all parties, no matter who was throwing it, but only as an afterthought. As if his presence wasn't exactly wanted but nor did anyone find it offensive enough to exclude him. Felix always went, always got reasonably drunk, always partook in beer pong but never excelled.

So when my dad told me he'd heard from Mrs Bucher that Felix was going to attend the same university as I, I didn't care. It wasn't that I'd been particularly popular at our school and thought it below me to hang out with him; he might even have been considered higher up in the food chain than I, who'd been known as the weird nerd with the mint green hair and the flower tattoo.

But, unlike Felix, I'd immigrated into the safe system of silly cliché school groups eventually. It had happened somewhere between getting my first tattoo and colouring my hair, when the artsy kids decided that I was suddenly worthy their attention. With my obvious lack of artsy skills, it was only my appearance, the fact that I liked Sylvia Plath and had a tumblr, be it solely dedicated to quotes, that raised me above the common people in their eyes.
We weren't exactly close.

So, no, I wasn't apathetic to his existence due to teenage hierarchies. There was just nothing about him that made me go 'wow, he seems like a cool guy, let's befriend him'. 

Felix Bucher was like coffee with too much milk, so why did I suddenly find him so bloody interesting?



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