“Um...excuse me,” you said as you walked up to the front of the room and paused in front of your teacher’s desk where she was sitting behind, keeping her gaze fixed on a pile of papers that she was correcting. The history period ended only a few minutes ago, and by this point, most of the kids had left the classroom except for a few who were almost done gathering their stuff together.
At the sound of your voice, your teacher lifted her gaze from her papers up to look at you, a slightly irritated frown on her face. You guessed that she wasn't too happy by the fact you had interrupted her from whatever she was doing just moments ago. “What is it, _____?” she asked a bit impatiently.
You lifted your hand out towards her, the one that was tightly clutching your test that you had received a few days ago. “I, um...corrected my test,” you said a bit hesitantly.
Your teacher shifted her gaze from you down to the test, then back up to you, that slight scowl never leaving her face. “You should've corrected it as soon as you got it and then given it back to me the day after.”
“Well, sorry for having a busy schedule!” you said a bit loudly before you realized that it was rude to talk this way to a teacher. Instantly, you cleared your throat and dropped your gaze down to the table. “No, really, sorry. I’ll try to give you a test as soon as possible from now on.”
Your teacher nodded before she briefly scanned through your test. She lifted her gaze to look up at you once again. “Do you promise to try harder on your tests next time? You’re nearly failing this class, if you hadn’t known already.”
“I-I know,” you said, trying hard not to let irritation show in your voice. It was already so obvious that you were on the brink of failing, and not just in history class. You didn’t need someone else, especially a teacher, to confirm your troubles to you. “I promise I’ll try harder.”
But you already knew it was an empty promise, and when you lifted your gaze to look up at your teacher, you had a feeling that she did, too. But she didn’t say anything. Instead, she nodded before she set the corrected test down on the desk next to her and resumed what she was doing before.
You sighed before you reached down for your backpack, which you placed on the floor next to you, and flung it over your shoulder before you headed out the door, prepared to go to your next class. You were terrible at making promises, even to yourself.
As you walked down the hallway, keeping your gaze dropped down to the floor, you were slightly aware of someone a good enough distance away walking towards you. You lifted your gaze and briefly scanned the hallway in front of you before your eyes instantly settled on Arthur, who kept his gaze fixed in front of him as he walked to his next class.
As soon as you saw him, you felt your heart race and your chest tighten in anxiety. Please don’t let him notice me, please don’t let him notice me, you repeated in your head as you dropped your gaze firmly back down to the floor. Even though you arrived at school early that morning and he had been able to help you with correcting your test, you wanted nothing more to do with him. You tried to blend in with everybody else who walked around you, you tried to pretend that you weren’t aware of his presence, but nothing worked.
“Hello, _____,” Arthur said as your path crossed his.
Instantly, you lifted your head and shifted your gaze to look at him, and as soon as your gazes met, he gave you a tiny smile.
But you didn’t say or do anything in reply. Instead, you quickly dropped your gaze down to the ground and continued walking at a slightly faster pace, refusing to turn your head around to look back at Arthur. You felt his confused gaze fixed on you, but you tried not to pay attention to it. Instead, the only thing you focused on was getting to your class without being too late.
You hoped that he would've gotten the hint that you no longer wanted anything to do with him.
You sighed as you stared blankly down at the tray of food that lay in front of you, picking at it absently with your fork, your elbow rested on the rim of the lunch table and your chin in your hand. You were the only one sitting at the table, just like always, but you didn’t seem to mind anyway. You briefly lifted your head to look around you. You spotted the girls sitting together on one half of the room and the boys on the other, and all of them seemed to be occupied with something other than their food.
You lowered your gaze back down to your food and rested your fork against the tray, suddenly feeling your appetite disappear. It wasn't like you should've felt lonely being by yourself, since almost every lunch period you spent was alone. For once, nobody in the room seemed to be concerned with teasing you. In fact, they hardly seemed to pay attention to you, and that was something that you were thankful for.
But as you listened to the sound of the kids around you, a tiny part of you wished that you had at least one friend. A tiny part of you wished that you knew how to make friends. A tiny part of you wished that you were able to fit in with everybody else at the school, that you didn’t get so angry at everyone and everything all the time.
But you instantly shoved that part of you away and instead focused on trying to eat your food. It was hard to do so, since the school’s food wasn't all that good and you weren’t really hungry, anyway. You closed your eyes and pushed your lunch tray away from you, trying to let your mind wander off to something else besides your constant loneliness.
“Why are you sitting here by yourself, _____?”
At the sound of an irritatingly familiar voice, you instantly snapped out of your near-trance and removed your chin from your hand, lifting your head to look up towards the source of the voice. Your gaze instantly settled on Arthur, standing next to you and looking down at you with a confused frown. You noticed that instead of holding a tray containing the school’s lunch, with him he carried a plastic bag.
You were silent for a few moments as your gaze was continually kept locked with his, your thoughts blank. Finally, you seemed to regain the ability to speak, and you felt your previous frustration rise up inside you.
“Does it look like I have anyone else to sit with?” you huffed before you turned your gaze back in front of you and closed your eyes as you crossed your arms.
Arthur continued to stand there, looking down at you, despite the fact that you wanted him to go away. “Well, I just thought that you were...probably waiting for a friend.”
You shook your head. “I have no friends. I thought you knew that already.”
“A-Actually, I didn’t.” You were able to tell by the tone in Arthur’s voice that he was a bit uncomfortable by your sudden statement, but you ignored it. A few awkward seconds of silence passed between the both of you while Arthur rubbed the back of his neck with his hand before he dropped it down to his side and cleared his throat. “Do you mind if I sit with you?”
You almost jumped in surprise at the request. You instantly turned your head to the side and lifted your gaze to look up at him, frowning in irritation and anger. You didn’t pay attention to the fact that he had drifted his gaze off to one side and was looking a bit flustered.
“Why would I let you sit with me?” you asked loudly, thought it wasn't that loud when your voice mixed in with the ones of several other kids in the room. “Why can't you just go away and sit somewhere else?”
Arthur snapped his gaze back over to you and took an uncertain step back. “W-Well, you just seem lonely, and I thought you might need someone to...talk to.”
That was when you knew that he was completely unaware of you and your personality. “Lonely? You think I'm lonely?” you spat. “You don’t know me! You don’t know me at all. So why don’t you just go away and never talk to me again?”
“Why are you treating me like you did a few days ago?” Arthur asked, the expression on his face quickly filling with frustration and a bit of anger. “After all I had done for you, after I helped you after you collided with me, after giving you food when you were hungry, after I helped you correct your test when you were completely lost, you think it’s right to push me away like we’ve never even met?”
“Obviously!” you yelled before you stood up from your seat and glared at him, your eyes filled with nothing but hatred. “You were nothing but a bother in my already difficult life, and I don’t want to cope with someone who already gets on my nerves!”
Arthur was silent for a few moments, staring at you with that same look of irritation and anger. Finally, your words seemed to sink into him, and the expression on his face changed to one of defeat and hurt as he let out a sigh. “Fine,” he muttered as he turned away so that his back was facing you. “If you want to act this way towards me, I don’t care.”
You watched in satisfaction as he walked away, not even turning around to look back at you. I think I’ve finally gotten rid of him!
Too bad it took him this long to realize I seriously don’t want him in my life, you thought as you sat back down in your seat. He should've known from the start that I wanted nothing to do with him. At least I won't have to worry about him now or ever again.