The school bell sounded overhead in its shrill, annoying ring that made me want to shut my ears. But it wasn't as loud as the racket the students around me were making as I pushed and squeezed my way through them and toward the stairs. Everyone else didn't seem to mind the idea of showing up late to whatever class they had. But unlike me, they did not have to face the wrath of Mr. Demerra. He rarely showed up to class due to his busy vice principal duties cropping up but when he did, he was as strict as Mrs. Hammond, if not worse. So far, I'd always showed up to his class at the last second, meriting a disapproving scowl. Today was the first time I was running officially late, and boy, was I not happy about it.
"Make way you dunderheads!" I spat at a couple of athletic boys who crowded the staircase, no longer in the mood to keep my foul mouth shut. When they turned around to assess the unwitting idiot who dare insult their top-of-the-foodchain butts, upon realizing it was none other than the infamous Makayla Summers, all they did was chuckle and move aside without a fight. Good for them. I didn't want to enter Spanish class with blood on my hands. What would Mr. Demerra think?
Finally making it onto my floor, I ran toward the class and burst in through the door in the most unceremonious manner. Bowing in front of the teacher's desk, a flow of words came spilling out of my mouth before I could organize the thoughts in my mind as I blabbered stupidly, "I'm so sorry I'm late. Don't kill me sir! I really am. I didn't expect Starbucks to be this crowded and when I finally got to the front of the line someone cut through and I punched the knuckle-head. It turned into a bit of a problem and -"
"Tsk tsk. Now that's not ladylike at all."
I stiffened. That voice. It was not one that belonged to the vice principal's. It was not one that belonged to my Spanish teacher. I started straightening in an almost robotic movement and eyed Leo who was giving me that lazy smirk of his. He beckoned at the front desk with a long finger of his, and spoke smoothly, "You should really take a moment to observe your surroundings first."
Our teacher wasn't here. And on the whiteboard was a message written for the two of us, informing us that he wouldn't be able to make it due to a last minute conference that came up but would like us to read and complete certain portions from our textbooks. I let out a heavy sigh and swung my bag off my shoulder and onto the desk next to Leo's.
"So how was your hot chocolate?"
I glared at the sarcastic remark from Leo and ignored him, settling into my chair.
"Damien and Nick really missed you this lunch."
"And you didn't?"
I bit down on my lip. That came out sounding a lot more offended than I had meant for it to. I was only joking along after all. Yet, if Leo had picked up the tone of voice in my words, he chose to ignore it and simply stated that he was going to take a nap, avoiding answering my sassy retort. Classic Leo. I've never once see him take out his textbook and study in this class when we were alone. Perhaps he took Spanish as a joke and treated it like some kind of free period on the days that Mr. Demerra didn't show. Which would make sense but considering how much the teachers were always praising him and the fact that he was both student body president and valedictorian for our class...you would think he'd be the studious type.
I watched him as he slouched forwards on his desk - his arms folding on the surface before he tucked his face into the gap so that all I could see of him was the tousled golden blond strands of his hair. Usually, I would mind my own business and get to work. But I wasn't going by routine today. Not one bit, I thought, recounting the punching incident at Starbucks.
"Psst, Leo," I whispered, leaning over in my chair and jabbing him lightly on his arm. He turned his head sideways and cracked one eye open, looking at me with that blank expression. With a small smile, I proposed, "Why don't we get out of here?"
Leo blinked. Once. Twice. Then, "What?"
"Come on. It's not like we have anything to do. Besides, it's the last two periods of the day. We might as well ditch and go off somewhere else."
He raised his head, eyeing me with a glint of suspicion on his face.
"What are you planning Makayla?"
I groaned, standing. "Nothing! I'm just sick and tired of doing more school work today. Let's just ditch."
"Are you asking me, the valued president of this student body, to bunk?"
Man, this guy had an ego. I mock curtsied in front of him, bowing my head to the ground as I spoke in an over-the-top accent, "Yes Sire. I am." Looking up, I grinned teasingly and added, "Well it's not like you have anything better planned, do you?"
I had a point and he knew it. The way to convince Leo was to use logic. Weeks of getting to know him had taught me that. When he muttered a reluctant, 'fine' and stood up, I couldn't help but ruffle up his already untidy hair and tug him along as we made our way out the class.
This was going to be fun.