3 - Pride And Prejudice

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It was Friday afternoon and I found myself in Midtown High's small theatre, my shoes pressed against the seat in front of me. Mary Jane was busy with the play's rehearsal on stage, the cast and crew milling around. Rehearsal was usually closed but since Mary Jane was the star, her friends were allowed to stay behind and watch. Not that I was watching or really paying any attention because I had handed over my physics paper only to start another, this one chemistry.

"She looks rather tiny up there, doesn't she?" Gwen was sitting beside me, focusing on our pretty friend on the stage. I dragged my eyes away from my notebook and looked up. Mary Jane was standing next to a senior I didn't know and she did in fact look tiny. "What's the play again?"

I took the pen from my lips. "Uh, Pride and Prejudice."

"Really?" Gwen asked, picking at the red nail polish on her nails. "That's a book though."

I glanced up from the textbook sitting on my knees, letting my eyes swing over to her. "I think the play is an adaption with a new spin on the book set in the modern age with technology...or something like that." Mary Jane had mentioned it a number of times but the play's actual concept slipped my mind. All I knew was she was playing a modern day Elizabeth Bennet.

"Right." Gwen nodded and I watched as her gaze shifted towards the double doors of the theatre. It was just past four o'clock, another half an hour before rehearsal finished. We had planned on a night full of junk food and girly movies at my place.

I shifted my books on my lap. "Are you perhaps, waiting for someone?" I questioned. I had known Gwen Stacy for years and the look in her eyes suggested she was a tad nervous about something.

"Nope, why?" Gwen shook her head, pushing the headband in her hair backwards, her hair falling away from her shoulders as she gave me a grin. I narrowed my eyes at her, wondering what she actually had up her sleeve when the seat beside me squeaked loudly.

I turned my head around seeing no other than Peter Parker, shifting awkwardly on the chair, his bag shoved between his feet. "Hey, Gwen." He cheerfully greeted my friend.

"Hi, Pete." Gwen smiled.

I popped my pen back between my lips and gave Peter a blank look before focusing back on my studies. I felt Peter's arm brush against my own as he pulled out something from his bag. I mentally resisted getting up and moving but knew I would never hear the end of it from Gwen. "She looks great up there," Peter was saying. "She makes a really great Elizabeth, don't you think?"

Gwen nodded. "Hmm-hmm, are you going to see the play?"

"Wouldn't miss it." Peter replied and a clicking sound followed. I turned my head to see a camera in his hands, snapping shots of the rehearsal. 

 I didn't think the director would allow it but I kept my mouth shut. "Oh, did you get onto the school's paper, Pete?" Gwen asked. I kept my eyes down, trying my hardest to ignore the conversation that was bouncing back and forth between me.

I felt Peter shift again in his chair, angling his body towards her more. "Yeah, I found out yesterday."

"That's wonderful!" Gwen replied and I rolled my eyes, my fingers tapping against my knee. Did they really have to have a full conversation while I was trying to focus?

Suddenly, Gwen was getting to her feet and my head shot up, seeing Flash standing in the theatre doorway. "Where are you going?" I questioned, my voice a little higher than I had intended. I took the pen from my mouth and glared at her.

Gwen turned back to me. "I've got plans." I knew that smug look in her eyes.

"What? With Flash?"

Gwen gave me a quick nod, fixing the denim skirt she was wearing. My eyes dragged back to the bully in the doorway who waiting for her. A twist went through my stomach. "I thought we had plans."

"Well, I figured since you ditched me the other day, I would repay the favour?" I stared up at her, my mouth hanging open. "I'm kidding, chill. I'm just meeting you guys later, yeah?" She was already bouncing down the steps, giving Mary Jane a little wave of her fingers before she slipped out the doors with Eugene Thompson. I couldn't even beg her to stay before she was gone from my view, leaving me seated alone with Peter Parker.

We sat in a strange silence, watching the play on stage. I knew there was no way I was getting any work done on my chemistry report now. I dropped my legs down, my books shifting on my knees and my pen rolled to the ground. I quickly moved, my hand jolting out to grab it as Peter did the same. Our fingertips touched, both reaching for the fallen pen.

It was a quick moment of touch and I yanked away my hand, my eyes shifting up to meet his own. I sat back up straight in my chair, tucking some hair behind my ear as he pushed his glasses back in place on the bridge of his nose. "Here you go." Peter said handing over the pen. I took it quickly, making sure not to touch him again.

My voice was clipped. "Thanks."

"What are you working on?" He asked and I turned to face him, wondering why he was trying to be so friendly. After our brief conversation in the hallway the other day he hadn't spoken to me or even looked in my direction. I though we had deal, a very strict deal.

"Chemistry," I replied. "Not that it matters to you."

Peter gave a little nod of his head, his eyes shifting away quickly, a force of habit he had whenever he was around me. "Right." We let the silence filter around us again. "So, Harry was telling me he's moving to Midtown. That should be interesting, right?"

I glared back at him. "Why are you even trying to make a conversation happen, Parker?" I asked, my voice getting a little loud. His eyes widened, his mouth opening and then closing, no words forming. "I thought we had a deal? We're not friends, okay? We made that deal together and I think we, together should honour it."

Peter nervously fidgeted. "Uh, I just--"

I was already tucking away my books into my bag. "Look, I'll make this super easy and just move seats."

"Florence, just--" He started.

I was already on my feet when I turned back to him. "And quit talking about me with Harry, I know he can't help it because he's a gossip, but I don't need to hear about you all the time, from all my friends." I heaved my heavy bag into my arms and stepped down a few steps and into a new row of chairs. Settling back into a new seat, my eyes found Mary Jane watching me. I slipped further down in my seat, my head twisting around to glance back at Peter Parker, but he was gone. 







AUTHOR'S NOTE: 

Gosh, already on 1.5k and only three real chapters up. Thank you everyone! I know the relationship between Florence and Parker is hard to read but don't bash it. I don't want them suddenly being best friends and all that. They will grow together, I promise. Anyway, please leave your wonderful comments below. 

-tinkertaydust x

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