People glared in at us as they passed by. We didn't care, there were far more important issues that were pressing down on us. Strangely, I actually pitied the people who walked past; they would never know the lessons I would teach my friends.
Eventually my tutor came in, only to find ten adolescents sitting in a circle bawling their eyes out. Miss Davis frowned at us in confusion as my friends drifted off to their tutor rooms, leaving me alone with Heidi who was in my form.
"Alli?" Miss Davis asked.
I was very close to my tutor who also took me for football club, which was the best thing I had going for me. No one had ever noticed the special bond I shared with Miss Davis, but we knew and it was something I treasured; but I never knew she felt the same way. Never before had she seen me cry, even when I ran headfirst into the metal goalpost. Collecting myself, I stood outside the door and waited for her to follow.
The door that had never fitted into its frame swung shut and Miss Davis was staring up at me, for a was a head taller than her, with genuine concern in her eyes.
I told her my news.
It took her less time to react than it did my friends. Much quicker than they had, she spoke.
"You're going to die?" She spluttered. They had all seen me as invincible, unfaltering; it was hard for them to accept the fact that their rock would crumble. And crumble soon. I nodded.
"Sorry." I muttered.
Not caring who saw or what they would think, I ducked under her arms so I was hugging my tutor. I could feel her damp tears creep under my blouse as her head rested on my shoulder.
"I'm sorry I'm acting like this," She sniffed, pulling away and wiping her eyes, "How selfish of me."
"If you ask me how I'm feeling I won't answer, I've already answered 'fine' to the last seven people who've asked." I smiled, more like the Alli she knew.
I opened my mouth, but hesitated. I didn't know if i wanted to tell her about my decision, but I couldn't help it, someone had to know, "I'm refusing chemo so I'll be gone within two months. The doctor said it was a miracle how I managed to stay upright for as long as I have."
I paused, "Are you alright?"
"Me?" She laughed shakily, "I've been better."
I bent my knees so our faces were level in an act not meant to be seen as patronising.
"You know you how much you mean to me?" I wondered if she did know.
"I think so." She whispered.
"Good, just checking." I straightened up.
"You mean the same to me too."
I stopped, just fixing my gaze on my teacher and trying to hold back the next wave of tears.
"What I wouldn't give for a few more months." Closing my eyes, I inhaled deeply, trying to picture how my life could have turned out.