I had really appreciated Alex's attempt to cheer me up and was genuinely looking forward to our girly night in, but it didn't stop me from feeling like a complete idiot when we parted and I sat down in my Music lesson after break ended. Luke hadn't arrived yet so I sat at our normal table alone, willing him to still be in a good mood.
'Umm, excuse me?' I heard a quiet voice ask, making me look up into deep ocean blue eyes. 'Are you alright?'
It was the girl I had bumped into in the corridor after Ellie had insulted me. She seemed a nice sort of girl. I'd never seen her around before but she didn't look like a new kid.
'Yeah I'm fine,' I said shyly, hiding my face behind my curtain of hair.
'It's just you seemed really upset earlier, when Ellie said that stuff about you, and I thought she was really out of line to say something like that and wanted to make sure you were OK.' Her voice trailed off at the end of the sentence, her face showing her uncertainty.
'It's alright,' I assured her, smiling shyly from behind my hair. 'I've had a lot of comments like that.'
'Oh,' the girl said. 'Right.'
'But thanks for asking,' I quickly added, not wanting to seem rude. 'I don't know many people who would come and make sure I was OK after what happened. Ellie can be quite an intimidating person when you get on the wrong side of her.'
'I'm sure I can handle that,' she said, smiling at me.
'What's your name?' I asked.
'Pippa,' she said.
'It's nice to meet you Pippa,' I smiled back at her. 'I'm Vanessa, but everyone calls me Nessie. Like the Loch Ness Monster.'
'It's been nice to meet you too. Is anyone sitting there?' She asked, indicating the seat next to me. At that exact moment I saw Luke walk in the door and head over to our table.
'Hello again stranger,' he said, completely ignoring Pippa and collapsing in his chair. 'How was your break time spent in the presence of the all powerful queen?'
'Luke, this is Pippa,' I said, giving him evils for not noticing I was in the middle of a conversation. I also kicked him under the table for good measure, which prompted him to smile warmly at my new friend.
'Hey Pippa, sorry I didn't notice you just then, I was in my own little world. I'm Luke.'
'That's alright Luke,' Pippa replied, visibly put out by Luke's casual attitude. 'It's good to meet you. I'll see you later?' She said, turning to me.
'Definitely,' I said, giving her a small stupid wave as she went to take her seat. 'You could have at least pretended to be nice,' I hissed to Luke, my eyebrows knitted into a frown.
'I was nice,' he protested, holding his hands up. 'What more did you want me to do?'
'Thank you very much Mr Lewes and Miss Jones,' the teacher said, sweeping into the classroom. 'You know I don't tolerate talking in my class so I would be very grateful if you would please shut up. Thank you.'