Rhyley reflected on the past few minutes. He thought about Sandra’s ability to make him smile, reflected on how good it had felt to take her into his arms and kiss her - relieving some of his negative energy if not changing the fact that Sandra was chaste - and tried not to wish that Sandra would give in to her own desire, knowing that this was unfair of him. He gazed out at the passing landscape as Mrs Longmorrow drove him home, vaguely listening as Sandra recounted her favourite parts of the movie to her mother.
When they arrived outside his house, Sandra asked “Would you like to hang out again over half term?”
Rhyley looked in her direction. Perhaps it was a little early for her to ask that today. But he wasn’t planning on avoiding her for the next nine days when they provided a great opportunity to hang out with her and so he answered “Sure. Just not tomorrow, okay?” There was no reasonable excuse for this, but he felt that the break would be good for them putting today behind them. Sandra seemed to understand this since she didn’t question him and nodded.
Rhyley, feeling generous, leant forwards and kissed her cheek before opening his door and sliding out of the car.
“Thank you very much, Mrs Longmorrow,” he remembered to say politely as he closed the door.
“You’re welcome,” Sandra’s mother replied, smiling. “Bye.”
Up in his bedroom, Rhyley sat on his chair and looked out of the window, searching for something he could draw. He spotted a magpie hopping across the grass of the front garden, went to fetch his sketchbook and carried his chair to the window to sketch it. After he had drawn a picture he was happy with, he flicked back to his drawing of Sandra and gazed at it. If he had been any good with words, he might have written a poem, but as it was, he wasn’t, and so instead he closed the pad and put it away, moving his chair back to his desk. He sat on his bed, picked up the iPod lying on the bedside table, plugged in his earphones and sat back against his pillows, closing his eyes as music filled his ears and only vaguely thinking mind.