I loitered around my house the following evening, thinking about what I was going to do with the situation about meeting up. Well, he knew me as Poppy, so I might as well meet him as Poppy. There was no point regressing into somebody whose life was terrible.
It was decided quickly, and, surprisingly, I didn’t think much more about it, as though Poppy was me, and there was nothing wrong with what I was doing. I didn’t know if that hypothesis was right, but it felt right. Even the feelings of guilt, and annoyance at Drew, had subsided for the time-being, leaving me with nothing but a head full of fluff, up in the clouds as I found myself even dreaming of Cayden.
Now, looking forward to the day, school whizzed past, and before I knew what I had done in the week, Saturday morning scooted round, and I began to get ready to meet Cayden.
I looked at the selection of strappy tops that my wardrobe provided, running my hands along the fabric as I waited for the right one. Green, blue, yellow, pink one-that-I-hated-wearing, whit- White? My white top was not hanging in its usual place. Frantically, I began to flick through the other clothes, but nowhere was my white tank-top. The skirt I’d told Cayden about was hanging in its usual place; the only missing object was the top…
“Mom,” I yelled down the stairs, “where’s my white strappy top?”
“It’s in the wash, remember,” her reply floated up the stairs. “You’ll have to pick a different one.”
No! Cayden was expecting me in white. I ran my hands through my dark blonde hair, panicking. I guess he’d see me if I wore yellow? I was tempted to pop to the computer room and send him an offline message, but I was put off by the fact that he might not get it in time. He might have a slow computer like mine, or be busy getting ready just as I was trying to; his mom might not even let him on. I wasn’t even sure if mine would.
Battling with the worry, I wondered why I hadn’t even bothered to give him my number or an emergency contact in case I was ill on the day. He’d understand, right?
It took me half an hour of on-off worrying to realise that Cayden would recognise me, no matter whomever he was expecting. I didn’t need to wear white for him to be there with me.
So, after applying a thin layer of brilliant blue eye-shadow and some lip-gloss, I made my way to the Raven Cafe. I could walk the distance, even in the rather loose sandals I had chosen to wear, as the cafe was a mere block or two away, around the high-street from mine. Yes, I had chosen it deliberately for that reason, and I hoped it wouldn’t be too hard for Cayden to find.
Ten minutes of slow walking later, and I was looking up at the black-bird sign of the Raven Café. Quickly, deftly, like I had done it so many times before (it was actually one of my favourite cafes of the town), I slipped through the door-and-bell, and to the back of the queue that was already formed.
Then familiar brown hair snuck into my view. I was jolted up from rooting through my purse.
There was Drew, slipping into line just before me. He looked up, acknowledging me, but he had obviously gone back to his old, grumpy self, as he turned away just as quickly; he seemed not to want to look into my face.
I blushed and turned my head away, making towards an outside table once I’d chosen my snack and drink. Suddenly, I was more nervous about Drew being there and seeing me with someone else than I was in meeting Cayden for the first time. Although I wanted to deny it, I knew that the feelings had resurfaced. I shuffled the menus on my table anxiously, sneaking glances at Drew when I was sure that he wasn't looking; he’d chosen a table inside the door, we couldn’t be further away.
After about five minutes of straight panic, I began to settle down to wait for Cayden to arrive.
It was going to be a long wait.