There was a knock at the door.
“G’way,” she murmured, turning over, still half asleep, and falling off the sofa and landing on the floor as a tangled heap of limbs with a rather loud thump. “Oww…” She rubbed her head and walked over to the door.
“Anna, you heard of a brush?” was Rick’s cheerful greeting.
“What’re you doing here?” she mumbled. “It’s only-“ She glanced at her watch and let out a little scream. “No way.” She turned and ran up the stairs, taking them two at a time. Rick shook his head and let himself into the house, walking into the lounge.
“Mikey?” he asked, looking at the boy, who was currently sitting on the floor, rubbing his elbow in an aggrieved manner.
“I fell off the sofa,” Mikey shrugged.
“How come you’re here?” Rick asked, puzzled.
“Basically,” Mikey began as he stood up. “Mr and Mrs Wilkinson are in England. Have been since sometime last night.”
”What?” Rick yelped. “You mean they just left her?”
Mikey nodded. “I made her promise that if she needed one of us to call. She called. Good job, really, ‘cause Benji turned up.”
”No way,” Rick all but growled, his fists clenching.
“S’actly.” Mikey widened his eyes. “Made him leave, and I ended up sleeping over.”
Rick nodded. “Kay.”
I was ready in ten minutes. Exactly. Fastest I’ve ever got changed. Period. Damn. I mean full stop!
“So since last week you haven’t talked to him about the kiss AT all, and when you got scared you phoned Mikey?” Maria asked incredulously.
They were sitting on the soccer field; just the two girls. Will was with Mikey in the music department, honing their instrument skills and Maria had told Rick, in no uncertain terms, that he was to go away and stay away because they had to talk about girl stuff. He’d left pretty sharpish after that.
“Yes…” Joanna began hesitantly.
“And Mikey slept over meaning when Rick called for you this morning he walked in and saw Mikey,” Maria continued.
“Yes…” Joanna said again.
“And you like Rick, yes?”
“So you don’t want Rick to think you like Mikey?”
“Jo?” Maria prompted. Her friend was blushing, and staring intently at the floor. Maria gasped, as everything suddenly clicked into place. “You like Mikey to don’t you?” When once again there was no answer, she laughed. “Anna, Anna, Anna. What will we do with you?”
“I don’t mean to,” Joanna began.
“I know. But you can’t help it. Well,” Maria mused. “Mikey’s a better kisser, but Rick’s sweeter. Mikey’s had more girlfriends, but that’s not necessarily a good thing.” She leaned back on her hands. “You’ve got a right kettle of fish here you know.”
”I know!” Joanna replied. “And I know I can’t…shouldn’t flirt with both of them.”
“So you do know what you were doing,” Maria pondered. “I was beginning to wonder.”
“Maria…” Joanna groaned.
“Okay, okay. So if Benji came round last night, was it Mikey who gave him that bruise?”
Joanna snorted. “As if. That was me.”
Maria nodded, grinning. “Nice one. You know he’s telling everyone that the other guy couldn’t walk after that fight.”
Joanna laughed. “He wishes. I punched him and then he skulked out.”
The two girls laughed, and for the next fifteen minutes watched the world go by with smiles on their faces. Then they headed back to lessons.
See the thing was I did like Rick. But I did like Mikey. But I liked them more as friends. I didn’t mean to flirt with them; it just happened. Has that ever happened to you? Cause I know I hate it
The marked English assignment landed on her desk with a muffled thud as the teacher walked back to the front of the class.
“I have graded these tests in accordance with-“
Joanna faded him out as her eyes focused on the letter on her paper. “C,” she whispered. “I got a C!” Excited, she looked over at Rick. ‘C’ she mouthed. ‘You?’
‘B plus’ he mouthed back. He grinned at her. Her excitement was obviously contagious.
I was still being picked up on spelling words the English way, and using English phrases, but it didn’t matter. I’d got a C! That was the highest I’d ever got in an English assignment. I was walking on air for the rest of the day.