27) 'Disbanded Squads' And Other Problems That Would Probably Be Resolved...

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27) 'Disbanded Squads' And Other Problems That Would Probably Be Resolved Within A  Single Chapter In A Comic Book


Okay, so Benjamin had apparently really messed up this time. He thought he'd be doing better if he stopped running away, but that was clearly not enough. This would be the time where he'd turn to his friends to ask for help.

One look around was all it took to realize that, no, it was lost. All was lost. Somewhere in the background, Lydia got swallowed by an elder dragon. He didn't even have the balls to go and pick Thijmen up; the guy seemed to be having the time of his life talking to The Cool Kids while the non-cool kids were left alone. By now even the most unassuming people had noticed the squad's recent breakup, but it passed by as a remark. If life were to be a newspaper, they'd be that Fun Fact hidden somewhere between the sports pages, in a corner, with letters so tiny ants would have to squint to read it.

In a nutshell: he was alone. So was the rest of the squad. Even Pi.

What a world, what a world.

He walked out of the school humming Aerith's theme under his breath, to make the mood more melancholic. As this happened, someone bumped against him. Benjamin said, because this was the best way to initiate conversation: "Bwargh!"

"Oh, sorry."

But when he was about to apologize, he froze. Messiah froze, too.

His character file didn't include scowling, though. He just looked away awkwardly and left. Benjamin stared at him awkwardly. Messiah awkwardly stopped walking, turned around, opened his mouth as though he were about to say something and ultimately desisted on it. It was depressing (and awkward), and ended with Benjamin watching him disappear, ever-so-slowly, into the horizon.

"Damn," he said, because the situation was dire enough to allow it.

In the words of Thiccman de Bruin: he was lame.

Why was Thijmen taking so long? Why was the driver taking so long? There was only so much time one could cover with internal monologue.

What if he walked home instead? Sure, it'd probably take about an hour, but at least he'd be able to avoid Thijmen and perhaps contemplate his life choices for a little longer. He could try to come up with a way to fix his relationship with his boyfriend and his friends or find out the reason why it had all gone downhill in the first place.

But by the time he'd seriously considered performing the rare act of walking home, the driver showed up. He parked the car behind a bunch of cars that came to pick up other rich, pretentious kids, who tripped over the redhead on their way to their ride because they were too busy looking at their iPhone X. When Ben finally managed to get to the car and open the door, he saw Thijmen coming up, and froze.

This was it. Make amends or make it even worse.

In a moment of clarity, a scene from a movie came to him.

He held the door open for Thijmen.

He stared at him for a moment.

"The car is getting cold." He walked around and got in on the other side.

With his heart on the ground in a million pieces, Benjamin got in too. Isaac, the driver cleared his throat, adding to tension. Was he aware of what was going on? They say taxi drivers always know what's going on, but did that apply to personal drivers who only drove two teenage boys to and from school too? Then again, Isaac also brought his parents everywhere, and who knows what they talked about when their son wasn't around.

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