chapter 3

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We stood near a corner in the alley. I dug deeper into my coat to keep my hands warm.

"Didn't you say there was a taxi waiting?" I spoke, clearing my throat and not making eye contact.

"I was bluffing then. I had to make something up." He said in a disappointed tone.

Snow started to fall. I felt my fingers and toes turning into ice... I quickly took a glance at him; he was still in his hoodie and black pants. I saw him breathe out a cloud of fog.

"Ah...Thanks anyway." I rummaged into my bag and offered him a hot pack.

"Thanks."

"I should go then. Sorry for troubling you." I walked ahead when his words stopped me.

"I'll walk you home." He said.

"Huh?"

"No... I mean, you shouldn't be walking home alone at this hour. It's not safe for a girl. So-"

"Okay." I blurted out.

Oh no, I sounded so desperate. I looked away to hide my embarrassed face.

He paused for a second and chuckled. I smiled back awkwardly as a response...

We quietly walked side by side in the dark and silent alley. I could clearly hear each footstep we took.

He did not look at me even once; I knew because I was stealing glances at him.

As we walked, I tried to make the best of the moment and secretly analysed him. His eyes, hair, nose, hands and lips... I turned away and smiled at myself. I had never seen him so up close and clear ever since my feelings grew for him three months back.

I was actually happy that the group of guys in the dark alley spotted me earlier; otherwise I wouldn't have been walking with Mark right now.

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