𝐢𝐬 𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐬 𝐥𝐨𝐯𝐞?

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*the next morning*

Richies eyes flutter open to be facing the blank white ceiling. His head was pounding and his his hands were sweaty. He stayed up late thinking about everything. Thinking about Eddie and how he feels. He's never felt like this with someone, not even girls. He just wants to hold his hand and walk with him along a beach and have a picnic under the stars. But at the same time he feels wrong. He's always been accepting of the gays. Never had a problem with them. But he feels like he's falling into a black hole when he thinks about it. 'I'm not gay' he thinks. 'Maybe'. *ph ph ph* the rain hits his window. "Didn't it just rain?" Richie says out loud.

*at school*

They were both at school doing very similar things. Eddie was interrogating Katie and the one guy who's actually nice to him in science class about love. The teacher wasn't there and the substitute just let them do whatever they want. "But like what is love?" Eddie asks. "Why are you so obsessed with what love is, who's the lucky girl?" The boy says. Eddie try's to remember his name but nothing comes to mind.

"Maybe he's just wondering, Tyler" Katie says. Tyler, that's his name, Tyler. "Um yeah, I think I might be in love with someone, maybe." Eddie says. "But I'm not sure" he says. "Well I dated one girl before that I didn't really even like so I wouldn't really know much about love but I'd say love is when you have no choice. Like you know how you can kinda choose who you like? Like you think someone is cute but you have to choose whether you like them or not. Well I think with love, you have no choice. You love them even though you want to hate them so bad. You really have no choice. Even when they treated you like crap, or made you feel inadequate, you still are in love with them. I think that's love." Tyler says not really looking up from his drawing. "Yeah, I agree. Love is when you see every single flaw in a person and you still think they are the most beautiful human being." Katie says looking straight at Eddie. "Yeah and you usually are in love with a person before you know you are. Which I'm not sure if that's a good thing but I'm just saying." Tyler says.

Katie really wants to talk with Eddie alone because she wants to know what happened on the date so she raises her hand and asks if she can refill her water bottle with Eddie. The substitute reply's with "whatever". Katie grabs Eddies hand and pulls him into the hallway. "So based on your sudden concern about love I'm guessing the date went well" Katie says excitedly. They slowly walk down the empty hallway. "It was magical, it was perfect. He called me Eddie Spaghetti for like half of the time and we sat in my bed for hours just talking about everything. It didn't go how I planned and I wasn't able to express my feelings which you said probably wasn't going to happen but always have big goals so you at least get something instead of setting 'ok' goals and getting nothing. So I didn't get to tell him I like him but at the end of the night we both were staring at each other and then we started to lean in, closer and closer [katie gasps] and then my mom started banging on my door" he says. "Are you fucking kidding me?" Katie says while doing a palm slap. "Yeah, he hopped out my window and said goodbye" Eddie says while looking at the ground. "So, you think he likes you?" Katie asks. "There is a slight possibility." Eddie says. "Slight possibility? He made a cute nickname for you already, He fixed your bike for free, spent hours with you at a park and then walked you home in the rain, and now this whole almost-kiss thing. He likes you, end of story." Katie says.

Richie sits down next to Beverly and Bill. The art teacher has these things called 'social sketches' where everyone kinda just talks and draws. They can sketch the first thing that comes to mind and then talk to their friends about it. Richie doesn't know what to draw but that's besides the point. "So like is it wrong to like someone who you're not supposed to like." Richie says. "I don't know what the fuck you're talking about" Bill says while he continues to sketch a puppy. "Like they are in a relationship?" Beverly asks. "No, no not like that. It's loving someone that no one wants you to love. Like you love someone but you feel wrong for loving them." Richie try's to explain but Bill and Beverly just exchange confused faces. "Ok so you like a girl an-" Bill starts but then is cut off. "No, no, I don't like anyone. It's just a question." Richie try's to cover it up. "It's obvious you like someone. It's just who? We've been trying to figure this out for weeks actually. We were just waiting for you to come to us. And now you did. So who is your crush." Beverly says. "What? No one." Richie says. "Just tell us!" Bill says. "No" "is it someone in the friend group" Bill asks. "Is it me?" Beverly asks. "No" Richie says. "You don't know them." Richie says. "So you do like someone." Bill says. "No" he denies. "We are getting it outta you sometime or other." Beverly says. "By the way we are meeting at the quarry after school." Bill says. "Ok I'll meet you there around 3." "I was thinking we would go straight there after school all together." Bill replys. "Oh well I need to do something before hand." Richie looks around at all the other people with nearly done sketches and realizes he hasn't even started. "Well we can come with you." Beverly says. "No, no please, you don't have to do that. It's fine. I'll meet you there. Is anyone else coming?" Richie asks trying to draw something. "Nope just us. Stan has to do something with his parents and Mike is working and Ben has some kind of class." Beverly says. "Ok I'll meet you there at 4."

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