I glared at Drew through my gritted teeth.

Resisting the urge to try the handle once more, I wandered back to the set of computers lined up against the window, facing inwards, to where he had discarded my pencil-case. Furiously, I snatched it up.

“So…” Drew began.

“I’m not about to start jumping out windows, if that’s what you were about to suggest.”

Drew spun around from the door to me, anger glinting in his eyes.

“I was just gonna suggest what we could do until help comes. Stop second-guessing me, Annabelle!”

“Oh, so help is gonna come?”

“Well, they’re probably gonna miss you, aren’t they? Well, I don’t know what they’re thinking.”

“What was your ‘idea’?” I was close to screaming at this point. Drew was giving me a temper and a headache.

He shrugged, back to mute. Slowly, he walked towards to me; I tried not to back away, whilst I watched the sunlight pour in. The day was bright, and Drew’s strong features were rather highlighted by the bright day.

Finally, he leant skilfully across me and switched on the screen of ‘our’ PC. I felt my eyebrows rise; I thought, having switched off the lights and locked the room, they would have turned the computers off too, to save more electricity.

Slowly, an automaton again, Drew typed in the username and password that we had been given by Mr. Stevans.

“You’re not thinking of completing the slideshows,” I said. “You never bothered with them in lessons.”

Drew shot me an unreadable look, his emotions muddled together.

“Well, maybe I have a reason now.” And he gestured for me to sit.

So, that was how we managed to complete our two slideshows. It didn’t take long; in the silence, Drew seemed to work like a robot: quickly and efficiently. Here, Drew was able to relax, I noticed, and warmth slunk into his voice. He asked me questions that he hadn’t bothered to before. Here, where he had nothing else to do. I drew a little comfort from that fact.

“Okay, Philosophic stuff,” he said when we were near the end. “You’re taking philosophy next year, you said. So, what would you say is man’s best feature?”

“The words that they say,” I replied promptly. “Although sometimes negative, words can sow the seeds of things great, and can be really reassuring.”

“Uh huh,” murmured Drew.

“Oh, don’t tell me: you’ve got a differing opinion.”

He raised his hands defensively.

“Let’s not go through this again.” In fact, the smirk upon his face led us both to chuckle.

He, turning out to be a quick typer too, finished within seven minutes a presentation worthy enough of public viewing, if a little skeletal.

I watched Drew closely as I continued my own powerpoint, noticing the hazelnut shades in his brown eyes, and the black tinge to his hair. By now, I had forgotten about his resemblance to what I had seen of Cayden; they looked the same, perhaps, but they could not have been more different, they were definitely two different people.

“So…” I mumbled as I created a new text-box, “you’re not good with crowds.”


“Would you say that you have Anthropophobia?”

“What?” Drew snapped his head up from looking at the screen to face me. “I’m not afraid of people.”

“Then why do you always push everybody away?” I’d taken my hands off the keyboard by now.

“Because no one wants to be my friend. No one bothers,” he snapped again.

“I wanted to!” I cried. “I was trying to make some difference, but you pushed me away…you’re always pushing me away. I’m only trying to help.”

“Well, you’re not helping.”

“Look, Drew, I’m sorry. I’m not trying to be a pain, even when you think the whole world is against you. I know what life is like. Father’s gone, mother is a silly vagrant, and everything seems so stupid without the internet-life you have.”

He sighed then, and ran his hands through his hair, letting it ruffle and then flop back without bounce.

“I didn’t mean to be… I thought… Nobody talks to me much, okay? I’m not used to ‘proper’ communication. School sucks, you know.”

I put my head onto my balled fists, elbows on the table, and sighed.

“Yeah, I do.”

Drew imitated my action and there we were: sitting across the desk about thirty centimetres apart, in silence, watching each other.

And then something clicked inside me, and I couldn’t stop myself staring into those brown eyes that were below carefully sculpted eyebrows, sinking into the dark orbs of Drew’s.

Suddenly, the door swung open with a bang and Sophie was standing there with Mr. Stevans. Blushing, Drew and I pulled our heads away from where they had swung into meet.

“I thought so. Annabelle said that she was going to get her pencil-case. I guessed it would be in here after, last week, she told me that was doing Computer Studies.”

“Oh.” Mr. Stevans scratched his head. “I don’t know how you two ended up in here after the caretaker locked it. He’s supposed to check on the dot before he locks the computers away. It’s lucky I’m head of IT and have a key, hey?”

Mr. Stevans gave a nervous laugh, but I was too confused to care. We were shunted out the room, and Sophie was going on at me about how the bus had been waiting for ten minutes before people got worried. I was too tired to care about anybody by myself. Past lectures and worried embraces, and the silent calm of the journey back, even throughout my final lesson, I just couldn’t stop thinking about what had happened.

Did that really just happen?

The End

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