“You coming in?” asked Jamie, bringing me back to the present.

“Umm, sure.  I need a chat with Robbie.”

“Dude,” she laughed, “you were on the phone to him last night!”

“So I was,” I said, laughing along with her.  I took the keys out the ignition and opened the door to my car, jogging around and catching the door before Jamie did.  My mother had always taught me to be a gentleman, and that constituted opening the door for a bird getting out your car.

“Thanks,” Jamie said, smiling at me as she delicately got out the car.  Her smile was truly amazing, and one of her many best features.

“No problem,” I told her, flashing a grin back at her.  I cocked an eyebrow as I noticed how her eyes glazed over and she stopped moving.  Was she ever going to get out of the car?

As I waited for her, I really looked at her – the girl I had grown up with.  I had seen her through all her problems in life, and I helped whenever I could.  From dealing with braces (she had complained because she’d ‘just look like the average nerd’) to her first kiss (I was quite unhelpful there, seeing as I couldn’t exactly show her, even though I wanted to, just to see…).

The thing that bugged me was that I could feel nothing more than brotherly love towards her.  It was destroying me – and I couldn’t explain it.  I wanted to feel jealously when that Chester dude was ‘chatting her up’ in the maths classroom, but I didn’t.  Maybe it was because I knew there was no chance in hell Jamie would fall for him, or maybe it was because I didn’t care who Jamie dated.  No, scratch that, I did care.  I cared very much.  I wanted Jamie to be happy, with someone I approved of, who wasn’t going to muck her around.  I wanted her to be with someone that loved her with all his heart, and I wanted her to love him the same way.  I didn’t want Jamie to experience heartbreak – not now, not ever.

A loud cough brought me back to the present, and I looked around, finding Jamie standing next to me, looking at me like I was mental.  I was still holding the car door open for her.

“Umm, what are you doing, Darren?”

I was wondering why I can’t love you as anything more than a brother, I thought.  But I could never say that to her – even if I did love her like that, there was no guarantee she loved me the same way.  So I had to think of another excuse for my slow reactions.

“I was trying to demonstrate how the world would get nothing done if we did things at snails pace, as you did, getting out that car,” I told her, flashing her one of my winning smiles.

Again, her eyes glazed over, like she was thinking about something, someone, she loved.

Come on, heart, make me feel, I thought.  Then I did feel.  I felt happiness – happiness that she was happy and loved something or someone.

Returning once again to the present, I closed the car door as Jamie said, “are you coming in?  Robbie’s been desperate to see someone his age – there’s only been me recently.”

“Yeah, sure,” I replied, smiling at the prospect of seeing my bud again.  I’d been at so many interviews for University recently, as had Robbie, and we’d hardly had the time to see each other.  Jamie led the way to her house, opening the black rusted gate with peeling paint and up the stone steps to her white front door.  The garden was wild, with perfectly green, even grass only three centimetres long, but wild bunches of lavender and a hedge that needed shaped.  A green shrub spilled over the fading orange wall and it looked like it was trying to reach the pavement to escape.  The beds were a burst of all different colours, thousands of different kinds of plants and flowers with a few rose bushes hidden in the mess too.  In the height of summer, the garden smelt delicious.

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