The first mistake Angelica made that day was looking at the new boy. She had been curious as to why he had stopped by her desk. Who knew he had been staring at her? She wanted to slap herself. Curiosity killed the cat and there’s no such thing as reviving.
Mrs. Fieigan spent the rest of the morning blathering on about the Enlightenment and Angelica spent the rest of the morning staring out the window. She had read the entire textbook so many times, she had the entire book memorized (including the glossary and index), so there was really no reason she ever had to pay attention in class, but out of etiquette, she would. Today though, the only thing she was paying attention to was wiping those green eyes out of her mind.
After class, she remained behind like usual so that no one would see her going to the library. Of all the people in the school, the only person she talked to was the librarian. Or was the only person until she ended up speaking to the new kid.
She didn’t understand why she even thought it was a good idea. It was just a sudden impulse and then the words flew out of her mouth. She shouldn’t be encouraging him. It only ever made things more complicated and it sure did get complicated this afternoon.
Angelica didn’t stop running until she reached a small unlit allyway where she turned in quickly and stopped to catch her breath. Walking down the alleyway, she stopped at the one and only door at the end, cleverly hidden by a stack of crates and looked around to make sure that no one had been following her before she pushed the door open and slipped in.
Angelica’s home was an old abandoned storage room that she had taken in as her own. It smelled somewhat musty even for the years that she had been living in here. The smell would never leave the room.
The place was one big room separated by only makeshift walls that Angelica made out of crates left in the room. It was an unusually well equipped storage room, containing both a sink with running water and a toilet, though the toilet stopped flushing a while back. Going to the bathroom now meant five minute walk around the building to the side entrance where she could slip in and use the bathroom down the hall.
She was surprised that even after years, they still hadn’t cut off the water yet.
The storage room was painted the same color throughout – a dim dark earthy brown that made the place look much more like a cave than a room.
Setting her bag down, Angelica walked into her makeshift kitchen to grab some food. She had a bad feeling in her gut that just wouldn’t settle down. As if somehow, that new kids was going to find out where she lived, especially since she pushed him. As she settled to work on her homework, there was a knock on the door, jolting her up in surprised. She set down her stuff gingerly and paced softly over the door where she peeked out of the peephole.
There wasn’t much to see. The crates and such blocked pretty much everything and unless the person was standing right in front of the door (which was pretty hard to to considering the obstacles blocking the doorway), there was nothing to see.
But the person was standing in front of the door.
And it was Christian.
She tore the door open, her eyes open in bewilderment. How? How did he find her? Was it the curse acting in her on again? She shook her head. No, it couldn’t be. She had only pushed him. This was not equivalent to a push. At least not in Angelica’s eyes.
“You dropped your book.” He whispered, handing over her library book that she had borrowed that day. It was new one on angels that she had borrowed from the library. The moment she heard that the librarian had ordered it, she went ahead and placed a hold on it. It came today, which was why she stayed so late afterwards. Usually, she would have just walked home immediately afterwards, but she really couldn’t wait to take a glance at that book.
It was a decision that she deeply regretted.
Angelica ripped it out of his hands and to slam the door without a word.
“Wait!” His hand shot out and stopped the door halfway with a weird expression on his face. “Aren’t you going to say ‘thank you’?”
Angelica’s face turned deep red. When was that last time she said thank you to anyone? Maybe the librarian a while back, but she had long pushed those two words to the back of her mind. There was never a need to said it.
“Thank you. For the book.” She muttered, barely managing to squeeze those words out before she slammed the door behind her.
It wasn’t until much later that she realized that her heart had been pounding.