Level 11✧ Overcoming Stereotypes

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Level 11

Overcoming Stereotypes

"Did Ryan seriously just give you his number?" Esmond asked, once the boys had left.

I nodded, since that was the only thing I seemed capable of doing. My tongue felt like lead and I was shocked at the fact that Ryan had given me his number. I was seldom the kind of girl to attract boys. Probably because I don't dress to purposefully turn boys on. I mean, the only kind of boys that I ever attracted were the ones who wanted to be friends with me. They never saw anything more in that, so to have Ryan give me his number, in less than a day of knowing me—that was a huge surprise.

"Is this the first time a guy ever gave you his number?" Esmond asked, a ghost of a smile on his lips.

"Yeah," I breathed. Not that I'd actually call him, though. I'm still secretly hoping that Esmond'll ask me out.

Which he never will, because he's practically oblivious to the fact that you like him.

I sighed. My thoughts were right. He's completely oblivious.

"What's wrong?" Esmond asked.

"Nothing." I crumpled the paper back into my hand and stuffed it hastily into my pocket. "Let's get back to work." I smiled at him before heading over to help a child with her bear.


When I told Hudson and Gavin about Ryan giving me his number, they burst out laughing and ignored the rest of my explanations. Three hours had passed since the end of work, and Hudson and Gavin had just gotten off from their soccer meet. Maryland excuses Hudson from work whenever he has a soccer meet, which takes place during work hours, so Hudson usually works a day less than I do. Both he and Gavin play for our high school's soccer team, and they're pretty good at what they do, being that that they've been playing soccer since grade school.


I don't play sports. I hate sports.

"Wait, so someone actually asked you out?" Hudson exclaimed, between giggles. "Oh my goodness, this is too funny."

"Shut up, Hudson!" I barked, slapping him on the head with a pillow. We were at my house today, in my room. "You're being an idiot right now! And plus, Ryan didn't ask me out. He only gave me his number. 'Number' and 'dates' are two separate things."

"I'm sorry. I can't help it. It's just so funny!"

"Har, har!" I fake-laughed. "I totally see the amusement in this."

"Aren't you going to call him back?" Gavin asked.

"No." I threw the pillow back onto my bed and flung myself down, burying my head into it. "I still have a case of the Esmond. I'm hopelessly in love with him, but he doesn't know that."

"Then tell him," Hudson said, incredulously. He stopped laughing and his voice grew serious. "And stop always whining about how invisible you are to him, because he's never going to notice you if you don't make the first move."

"I don't want to," I whined. "I've embarrassed myself enough in front of him."

"Who knows? Maybe Esmond has a thing for you, too," Gavin said, with a shrug.

I felt my cheeks heat. "I highly doubt that." I sighed and sat up. "I'm terrible around boys I like—ever noticed that?"

"Not really...I think Esmond's the first boy you've ever really crushed on," Hudson said. He took his glasses off and handed them to me. "Can you please clean this for me? It's ridiculous how much I suck at cleaning glasses."

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