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The Betting Game - Chapter Five

It took me a while to notice I was in someone's arms. I groaned inwardly. That just sounded like Tyler...
Thursday...

"Let's go jogging," Bryan said as he plopped down onto my bed. I remember going jogging with him almost everyday throughout the summer. It was his way of keeping me busy, so I wouldn't think too much. I wasn't in the mood today, though. I never was... I was always forced to go.

"No, she has to choose her outfit for tomorrow," Carla said as she searched through my closet.

"That doesn't take more than a min."

"No, it takes longer than an hour because I want her to try on each outfit," Clara snapped.

I sighed. You've got to be kidding me. I love my friends but sometimes they can get on my nerves. James nudged me slowly and pointed to the door. I nodded and we slowly sneaked out as those two kept going on with their fight. Suddenly, I just wanted ice-cream and a movie to watch. Preferably a comedy... to keep the gloominess away.

"So..."

"I know what you're going to say James but no, I'm fine. Not completely ok, but it's bearable. Now do you mind not asking me such questions?"

He put up his hands up in mock surrender. "Sorry, I just wanted to check up on you."

I punched him in the chest playfully and grinned. I missed our usual arguments. Ever since we became seniors, everyone started becoming busier with their own activities.

"Tyler was asking me about you," he said. My eyes widened at that revelation, and my mind started making up all these weird reasons to why he might ask about me. Could he already be feeling something towards me?

"Your name... I told him, and then yesterday he asked if you were coming tomorrow. I find it creepy that he actually bothers to talk to me during some classes. I don't really like the dude. I don't know what he's thinking, but he's definitely trying to play you. Make sure you show him who's boss."

I snorted and he gave me a look. "Thanks James, but I've got this under control."

"He hasn't tried anything weird on you, has he?"

I don't know why, but my mind flashed back to that night where he kissed me. I shook my head frantically. No! No... I've already put that behind me. Ugh! He took my first kiss... he deserves a punch... and a hard slap to the face. For a moment I thought I heard his voice in my head. 'Being nice doesn't suit you.'

"Mia?" James's voice was laced with concern as he snapped his fingers in front of me. "He... did?"

"No... no, everything's fine... really."

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Friday...

"We're going to go straight to your house after school, and you're going to get ready and we'll go to the barbecue at around 5. Got it?" Clara said as she parked her car in the usual spot. I nodded with a yawn.

The day was rather uneventful until last period, which I spent it in the library since I had free time. I was looking at a few books and then when I found something interesting to read, my height gave me a disadvantage since it was on the higher shelf. Oh great!

I stood on the small chair and tried reaching for it... no use. I stood on my tiptoes and I was almost... almost there when I lost balance and fell back. I gasped and waited for the slight pain to come.

"You can open your eyes now."

It took me a while to notice I was in someone's arms. I groaned inwardly. That just sounded like Tyler. Well, I didn't open my eyes. I kept them shut. Maybe he will just believe that I fainted and call out to someone. I couldn't believe he actually witnessed me falling off a small chair. Pathetic...

"Mia?" He snorted. "No problem. You can just pretend to have fainted."

Wait, what?! No... he's just saying that to make me open my eyes. Not that I will... and why is he here? Doesn't he have basketball practice now? I felt his arm wrap around my waist and his other arm - Wait! Wait... is he thinking of carrying me in bridal style to the nurse's office himself? Oh please... please let me get out of this safely. I really wanted that book, damn it!

The whispers and gasps started the moment he pushed open the library door. God! I'm so dead now. I subconsciously buried my head closer to his neck. I felt him tense for a moment, but he seemed to relax after a while.

"Is she ok? What happened?" This time it was my turn to stiffen. That would be Jessie... there is no way I would mistake her high-pitched voice. Either she was really good at acting or she was actually concerned.

"She'll be fine. I'll just take her to the nurse's office. Why aren't you in class?"

"Ugh... does it matter? Everyone is skipping!"

"Jessie," his voice held a tone of warning making her sigh.

"Then I'll come check up on her in 15 min. There isn't much left to the class anyway." Oh she's going to continue skipping class. That's what 'There isn't much left to the class anyway' meant.

2 minutes later, I tried not to kick him as he lay me down onto the bed and laughed loudly. Has he gone mad? I could feel his hands placed at either side of me, yet I refused to give up and open my eyes. His fingers brushed against my cheek as he attempted to move my hair out of my face. His other hand suspiciously moved to my stomach. Before I could tell what he was doing I burst out into laughter.

"S-Stttop!!!!" I screamed between hysterical laughs. I'm very, very ticklish... It's my biggest weakness and I hate it. "Ty..." breath... laugh... "Tyler." Gasp, and more laughter. I thought for sure I was going to die when he stopped all of a sudden.

My breathing became heavy as I tried to calm myself down. His hand caressed my cheeks and he whispered something I couldn't quite catch. He was so damn close!! My cheeks started to burn and I wished he didn't have to see that. I haven't really been this close to a guy before.

"Mia..." his voice was like a whisper. He looked serious for a moment before a grin formed across his pretty face. I sighed and put both my hands on his chest in an attempt to push him off. "You're actually beautiful..."

I froze. My eyes widened and I gave him a confused look. He laughed. I can't tell if he's being serious or if this is just some annoying joke.

"Go. Away," I hissed.

He got up finally, pulling me up with him. We sat side by side in awkward silence for a moment before he got up and moved to the door. "I'll be seeing you today, right?"

I sighed. Why was he so interested in me all of a sudden? I shook my head slowly... then noticed that Tyler was still waiting for my answer. He cocked his head to the side, looking at me with amusement. I nodded slowly.

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I'm like so happy with all the sweet and encouraging comments, and thanks to those who've answered my random question. So, I decided to post this chapter sooner. I dedicate this chapter to my favorite commenter, Maha... because her comment was really beautiful. Thanks so much. Don't forget to comment. I accept criticism too, so if you think I'm not doing that well, please tell me. I'll try to do better.
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Published: 6/7/2013
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