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Briar

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Briar

   It's Monday morning and as usual, I am late for class. I swear I have no concept of time. My twisted brain thinks one minute is longer than it really is.

   The memories of Darius and Saturday night is fresh in my mind as race walk all the way from my dorm to the C-wing where I have my Communication class. Darius drove me home right after eating, probably because he wanted to get rid of me as fast as possible. I still can't help how confused I get when I'm around him. It's as if his scent is interfering with my brain's signals to the rest of my body. It doesn't matter anymore because he is shady as fuck and I don't want anything to do with him or his friends. Nope. Not even a little bit.

   As I open the door to the lecture hall, Mr. Ariuletta's round voice fills my ears. He's an elderly man with round glasses that always slide down his nose. Ariuletta is standing with his back towards me, gesturing passionately with his hands whilst talking.

   He's wearing his classic grey suit with a red tie today.

   "So as I've said, communication is key when it comes to everything in life. Whether it is in private relations, work, school or-" he stops talking when he spots me in the doorframe.

   "Ah, Ms. Cardale. How nice of you to join us today." He smiles, wrinkles appearing around his eyes and mouth. I can both feel and hear everyone shifting in their sheets when they turn to look at me.

   I smile awkwardly as I allow the door to glide shut behind me.

   "Take a seat," Mr. Ariuletta gestures with his hand towards the lecture hall which seems almost full.

   I scan the room on the search for an empty spot. Most of them are in the middle of the assembly. I don't want to push myself past everyone, and so my nervous heartbeat steadies when my eyes land on a free seat close to me, at the edge in the back.

   I head towards hit but immediately slow down when I spot him. His side profile is impossible to mistake. My face falls even further when he, the one sitting next to the free seat, turns around and I meet his gaze.

   Of course, it's him.

   I search for the others, and my shoulders drop when I spot them too. Darius and Collins a roe down and Elias next to him. I take another glance around the room to see if there's any other available seat. It's not, and I feel like that idiot that goes to the fridge to check for food again after 30 seconds just to find out that, no, no one has magically filled it.

   Without seeing any other option, I take a deep breath and sit down next to Grae. If I don't give him any attention, he might not bother me for once.

   They are all quiet for a while, and for a split second, I believe that we can actually tolerate each other without any fuss. I haven't forgiven Grae for that whole drowning incident, but I don't have the energy to deal with him.

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