Sorry guys, this is a really short one. I just had a few minutes to spare and I felt like updating! I didn't think I'd be able to focus after my job interview this morning but surprisingly I managed haha. Anyway, enjoy :)

   After Mark's reassurance, I made my way back to the top of the slope, this time with a much better attitude.

   You're not going to be the best, just accept it. Focus on making yourself better and don't pay attention to anyone but Mark.

    I chanted the same two sentences through my head for the entire lift ride, so by the time we reached the top, I had almost convinced myself into believing them. After we jumped off, and were standing at the top, Mark put his gloved hand on my shoulder.

   “You got this Liz, just ride the best that you can, that's all anyone can ask for.”

   I forced a smile, and pulled my goggles back down, ready to just enjoy the adrenaline rush that came with the mountain and the cold air. “Got it.” I nodded, and off I went.

   After 3 or 4 more runs, I had completely zoned out. I payed no attention to the other boarders, not even Mark. All I thought about was pushing myself to have a faster, cleaner run each time. By the afternoon, I had finally accomplished one of my goals. I had perfected my speed and was now moving at the same pace as everyone else. It took a huge weight off of my shoulders knowing that I was no longer the centre of sympathetic attention. A smile found its place back on my face as I went to meet up with Mark and start our journey back to the resort.

   “High-five Liz, that's what I'm talking about!” Mark held his hand up, and I didn't deny it. He held it in one of those manly bro handshake/greeting things. “You were flying!”

   I laughed at his exaggeration. “I wouldn't say I was flying, I think that may be pushing it a little bit.” I teased, glad to be back to my true, happy self.

   We made small talk the entire way back to the resort. When we got there, Mark stopped and faced me. “Well Liz, I have to split. Craig wants to meet up for some brunch, 'cause he wants to talk party details and stuff. Is 7 okay?”

   I stared, not understanding what he had asked. “...What?” I asked, clearly confused.

   “7, as in, I will come to your door and pick you up at 7pm. Is that okay with you?” He spoke to me slowly, as if he were explaining this to a small child.

   My cheeks flushed red yet again. “Thank you for your explanation, oh wise one. And are you sure you really want me to go?”

   Mark groaned. “This again? Liz, you are coming, and that's final. You can't find a way out of this one.”

   It was my turn to groan. “What are you, my father?” I asked, sticking my tongue out at him. He laughed.

   “I don't think I've ever met a dad who forced his daughter to go to a party, but I guess I can roll with it.”

   I shook my head, a smile creeping back up. “Okay McMorris, see you later. And DON'T be late.” I gave him the most stern face I could muster and walked away, leaving him laughing and saluting me.

   “Aye aye captain!”

   My heart fluttered. This boy had an effect on me that I couldn't explain. I just hoped I would be able to keep hiding it from him...

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