Chapter 33 (Part 1)

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To knock or not to knock, that is the--worst idea in the history of bad ideas.

Okay, Alex.

This is just a...friendly check up.

Friends check in on friends, right?

This feels oddly familiar circa a year ago, San Diego-


He's probably fine, and when he opens the door he'll just smile that stupidly gorgeous smile, and assure you that everything is okay.

He won't know that you've been secretly stalking his poetry, or obsessively worrying about him, or replaying the way you kissed him in your roommates car a million times over.

Will he?

Can guys sense that stuff?

Now that I think about it, Elias picks up on my anxiety like a bloodhound.



Just act normal.

Here goes.

I swallow the beginnings of a panic attack, lift my hand to Elias's door for the fifteenth time, and...



What the hell is wrong with me?

I've talked to this man countless times before and had zero problems.

Zero. Zip. Zilch.

But today, I'm acting like a squirrel on speed for reasons I neither accept or understand.

Like, since when am I nervous around Elias?

Well, okay, okay, maybe that's a stupid question, but since when am I unable to do basic human gestures in front of his door?!

Knocking is not a difficult thing to do. Fact.

See below for proof.

Life Manual Anecdote Number 1: In order to greet someone at their place of residence, making your presence known is key to establishing a connection.

To easily get a friend's attention, try the following:

Step one: Make a fist.

Step two: Bend wrist.

And presto, knocking accomplished...

...assuming you're "normal".

"Normal" people don't struggle with everyday tasks and are generally able to maintain mostly healthy social and romantic relationships.

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