My new friends passed around a cigarette beside me and I watched the random students that left school early.
Early fall in Toronto was humid and it bit into my skin, entering my pores and forcing me to keep it in my memories forever. I stood against the back wall of the school, several steps away from Liam and Jen, so as to avoid the cigarette smoke, and I thought about my friends back in L.A. and how they had respected my idea of being a nonsmoker.
"I still can't believe it," Jen said. "Michel Logan does not smoke."
"You don't know me enough to say that." I responded.
Smoke escaped her nose as she smiled. "It isn't so bad, kind of relaxing."
"Jen," Liam warned. "Leave him alone, he doesn't like it."
"I know," she said, "but, he can't be that bad of a kid if he won't even smoke."
"Jen!" Liam said as I slowly walked away from the two. "Please Mic, I'm sorry."
I stopped. "I was wrong about you two," I spoke without turning around. "And it is Michel."
Silence rang out behind me as I steadily walked away from the two and towards the parking lot where Karly and Zack would soon be. As I reached my blue Nissan Infiniti, a girl walked out into the wide space of the parking lot. Her long brown hair was in a loose bun and her blue eyes were determined.
"Hey!" I said, louder than I had intended. "Wait up!"
The girl stopped and stared at me with a confused expression.
I half-jogged, half-walked towards her and blocked her way so that she couldn't escape again. "Hi, we meet again."
She looked down and I could see blossoming rose petals on her cheeks. She was so cute. She stood with her red backpack and random school books in front of me, yet she didn't speak. She had a beauty mark under her right eye and I watched it, hopeful that she would speak to me.
"I have... to go." She finally said, but her words were not what I wanted to hear.
"What's your name?" I asked. "Why do you keep running away from me?"
She shook her head furiously and tried to walk around me.
"Please," I almost begged, "I just want to know."
"I..." She said. Her body was stiffening with shyness, but I could visibly see her shudder with her attempt to act normally. "My... name is... Laurie Tamer."
"Laurie?" I asked and she nodded. "That's pretty."
She looked up at me and her eyes, so uniquely blue, went wide.
"I'll see you around, okay Laurie?" She lowered her eyes and I could see a faint smile tug at her lips. Behind us the school was emptying and I knew that my siblings would soon be out. "We should hang out. Maybe you can show me around." I winked at her before turning around back to my car, leaving her blushing profusely in the now busy parking lot.