Sam's mom, Eleanor, and I talked for just a few more minutes about what Manhattan is like. I also found out where 'Just Around' is located. It's in south-western Michigan, and I guess the snow was already trying to bury them alive.
Sam came back on the line after that, asking me how my ear felt, and his mother shouted "I heard that" in the background.
I told him how my day was positively miserable, and I wasn't sure how I'd make it through school without my best friend with me, but he shrugged it off and told me I'd find a way. We didn't talk about last night, and instead acted as if it'd never even happened.
Throughout the week, Sam and I talked on the phone every night, usually after seven so it wouldn't charge our minute. I missed him terribly, but I'd nearly forgotten about our accidental kiss.
He told me he'd be coming back Tuesday night, because his parents didn't want him to miss any more school.
Now, it was Sunday night, and I was sitting on my balcony, talking on the phone about just silly things. He was telling me about his nephew, who sounded like he might be the most adorable little kid in existence.
"Wait!" I yelled, trying to contain my laughter. "If you have a nephew, that makes you, like, Uncle Sam, right?" I couldn't contain it any longer though, and I laughed so hard I snorted.
"Ha. Ha. Very funny, Nikki." He snorted, mocking me and I told him to shut up. He didn't, so I put him on mute and waited.
"Nikki? Hello, you there? C'mon, it was just a joke! Fine, Nikki, I'm sorry! There, are you happy?" He pleaded. I took him off mute, beaming.
"Yes, quite. And apology accepted."
We talked for a while longer, and his mother said 'Hi' as well.
Finally, we decided it was time for bed, and I didn't speak with Sam again until Tuesday.
"Oh, my God, you're back!" I shrieked when I saw him. He was just walking into third hour Biology when I saw him. He was wearing dark blue jeans and a black and blue V-neck sweater. His blue eyes were as bright as ever, and I tackled him with a bear hug. "I thought you weren't coming back until late tonight," I pondered. It was now the third of December, and light snowfall began to drift lazily down to the street outside. I could tell because there was a large window in the class room.
"Nah, my flight got pushed up. I got in last night around ten. I thought about coming over to see you, but I figured I should wait and surprise you. Think of it as an early Christmas present," he explained. I nodded, smiling and took my seat as the bell rang.
At lunch, the only talk for the first twenty minutes was about the big school dance coming up, the Snow Ball. I must admit, I was pretty excited.
I noticed that Adam, a new good friend of mine, introduced to me by Amber, kept throwing glances my way. He was the only one who packed his lunch at the table, and I still didn't eat school lunches, so it was just the two of us left at the table at one point. I smiled and decided to scoot over and sit next to him.
"Hey." It was only one syllable, but it worked.
"Hey yourself. What's up?"
"Not much, actually. Not much at all," I replied.
He laughed, saying, "I can tell. So, why don't you eat lunch anymore?"
"I don't know. I just stopped eating lunch during October and November when I went into the choir room. I just haven't gotten back into the habit. Plus, it's easier to stay healthy without greasy pizza every single day," I told him.
Adam had straight black hair, but his hair was naturally black, and so it looked alright. His eyes were brown, and not very deep. He had long eye lashes, and pale ivory skin, much like myself. He was pretty cute, if I was honest, and he was a great friend.
"So, Sam says you're working with new paints recently," he commented.
"Yeah, I am. I was working with acrylics, like you know, but I switched to oil painting last month I think. It's so much nicer, and a little easier, as well."
"I could have told you that," he snorted.
"You paint?!" I exclaimed. My interest was peaked, and I had no idea that Adam and I had that in common.
"Well, my mom paints, but I learn a lot of stuff from her. She prefers oil over acrylic any day," he explained.
"No way!" For most of the rest of lunch, Adam and I talked about paint mediums and the different types of brush strokes, and I even learned something new.
The others tried to follow the conversation for a while, but they gave up after they realized that it was way over their heads. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I noted that Sam kept staring at me. I couldn't decipher his expression though, mostly because I wasn't paying attention.
"Nikki, come here for a moment. I want to talk with you in private for a minute, if you don't mind." Amber announced. I nodded, wondering what was on her mind. I found out when I got to the empty seat next to her, and she leaned over and whispered in my ear.
My heart sank like the Titanic, breaking in two and dragging everything in it's path with it, which included my stomach. I felt sick myself getting dizzy as I listened, but I lied through my teeth, telling her I was fine with it and she should definitely go for it.
"Are you sure? Because I can totally back off if I'm stepping on your territory," she offered. I shook my head and gave her my Yeah, totally, go for it! smile, and she hugged me. "Thanks, Nikki."