Sixteen

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"Aww, look at the happy couple," Tony cooed.

Couple. Were we a couple? Did hand holding instantly qualify us as a couple? No, obviously not. That was a stupid thought to have. He had to ask me or I had to ask him to make it official. Starting a relationship that was based upon nothing but assumptions would lead us nowhere, and I had a destination in mind. Zero.

He would lead me to Zero. I had been chasing Zero for as long as I could remember. There was where my happiness resided. Everything I would need to feel complete was with Zero. A successful book career. Someone by my side to make me feel whole. Confusion would melt away, and I would no longer be left a mess. Zero had everything I needed as a person. If I were going to reach Zero, I had to make sure everything along the way ran smoothly.

"We're not a couple," I stated.

I'll admit, my voice came out quite harsh and cold. That was not my intention, but unfortunately, it would happen sometimes. I was a jerk. Everyone knew it. Hell, my mom has called me a jerk before, and I couldn't blame her. I was blunt. I was honest with people, even when they didn't want to hear the truth. And sometimes when I spilled the truth, it came out harsh and rude.

Amy, Tony, and Gray all flickered their stares between our hands and our faces. Gray was the first to smirk, holding back his chortles and jerking his head away from us. "Yeah, alright." That caused the other two to smirk as well, agreeing with him.

"It's true," Sky announced awkwardly. The sweat of his hand molded into my skin. Honestly, I was sure it was my fault. My words probably didn't help him too much and made him believe he didn't have a chance with me. "We're not together."

"I could have sworn you two were, though," Tony mumbled.

"Well, when one of us asks to make it official, then we will," I responded.

Jerking his head at me, Sky smiled. "So, if I asked you right now to be my girlfriend- boyfriend- I don't know, partner, would you accept?"

I shrugged. "Sure."

"Then, will you be my partner?"

"Sure," I nodded. Wow, that was a great way for us together. Tell that story to the non-existent children. It's a love story to tell the ages.

But the smile that shot out wide across Sky's cheeks granted me with the knowledge to know that I did it right. Asking people to be their partner wasn't supposed to be all flowers and chocolates and romance. It could be in the parking lot of a McDonalds, or, in our case, the middle of the mall with my best friend and his.

But this wasn't romance. At least not the kind that people would read. When Hans decides to ask Giselle to be his girlfriend, it will be special. That's what people want to see. That's what sells. Which, in all honesty, sucked. I wasn't a big romance reader; it wasn't the genre I preferred. Of course, I always read top grossing books, and the majority happened to be romance. If I was going to make it, I had to make sure my book stood out in it's collective group. So, maybe Hans wouldn't ask it all romantically.

Hans would sit with Giselle, the two of them at the train station as they headed into the city for a school project. He would have his camera to take pictures strapped around his neck, and she would hold onto a tablet, fully charged, with her notes loaded up and ready to be jotted down. They'll be standing on the crowded subway, squished up between a sweaty man who came from the gym and a woman who smelt an awful lot like old lady perfume.

"Anywhere you want to go, Spencer?" Sky asked.

As the subway lurched forward, Giselle would crash into someone's back. Hans would pull her back into his arms, whispering in her ear to ask if she was alright. Tentatively, she would nod back, not wanting to worry him. It was her own life, and she could take care of herself. She didn't always need someone to take care of her, but to have Hans at least make sure she was alright was sweet on its own.

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