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AS THE MONDAY DRONED ON AND ON, I began to regret the kiss between me and the boy more and more.

He had been avoiding me all day, and I couldn't say I was innocent in that petty crime, either; while he was still in the corner of my eye as often as possible, I had made sure to look like he wasn't even noticed and to take the back staircases when we drew even the littlest bit closer. It was unavoidable, our eventual meeting, but it was one I was willing to delay - and by the way, the Parker boy behaved, he was too.

I couldn't face him. Not after that. Not after the mistake that had begun to consume my every thought. It wasn't supposed to happen, and after rushing home, I immediately began to berate myself for I shouldn't have let it happen. This was a mission, not a 'romantic comedy' movie that Gwen would go on about, and getting attached to the boy I would eventually bring in to his death wasn't part of the plan. It was my fault, and now I was reaping the sorry rewards of my mistake.

"Hey, she's alive!"

Immediately my eyes rose from the book I had been drearily staring at to the girls' above mine, forcing a happy expression at the sight of MJ and Gwen. I wasn't eager to talk to them, and it was extremely difficult to not show that. While I did not hate them as much as I had in the beginning, the only thing I truly desired was to be alone and focus all my attention on figuring my next step. "Oh, hi?"

"We thought you were trying to fall off the face of the earth or something," the girl explained, squishing in her chair and wincing as it screeched against the tiled floor. "You've been so quiet today, what's up?"

"Nothing, just reading this book about...chemical spills?"

Mary Jane raised an eyebrow, pushing aside my outspread textbooks to make some elbow room. She had new dye in her hair now, a neon blue to mingle with the red - a combination that no one else but her would go for, and a pairing that would really only work for a girl like her. "You're being awfully evasive today. What's the big deal? Did something happen?"

"Nothing."

"Uh-huh, sure, and my mama's totally fine with my hair - plot twist, in case you didn't realise, she's not and one of these days I'm going to show up bald and pissed off with my hair in her hands." She scooted closer and rested her chin on her hands, sly eyes on mine. "What's going on with you, sweetheart?"

I shrugged and shoved the book in my bag, avoiding curious gazes. "I just wanted to catch up on assignments; I've been a bit behind due to-"

"-Peter?" Gwen guessed, putting a gentle hand on my arm. "You've been busy with him, right? Well, scratch that answer, because you have been - and it seems like every time something happens, you hide out in the library - are you seeing the pattern that I'm seeing?"

MJ nodded along, playing to Gwen's rhetorical question with a larger-than-life grin. "What happened between you two - did you have a lovers squabble? A fight? Did he kiss you? Wait, did you kiss him - because let's face it, kids, the poor boy has no game whatsoever, and you seem to be the one who has the balls to initiate something between you two."

Kiss. The word immediately made my face red, and although I hid it as I conveniently dropped my pen, I knew that they sensed something about the importance of those words. "No, we're fine, not that there is a 'we', I'm just studying."

"Studying what? The art of making love?"

The girl cackled and slapped Gwen's outstretched hand in a high-five, clearly proud of her friend's joke. "I've taught you so well, Gwennie, you've come so far. They grow up so fast, you know - okay, wait, not the time. Back to you, Em, and your boy toy troubles."

Little Spy | Peter Parker ✓Where stories live. Discover now