Where It All Started

At sixteen, I have only had one crush on one boy my entire life, Jared Cameron. I never felt the way I do about Jared with any other boy, I've never been interested in anybody else like a normal teenager. To me, it's always been Jared.

We've know each other our whole lives. Since the first day of Kindergarten, the two of us have always been in the same class, this year I'm only to the left of Jared's desk in our sophomore history class. My favorite part about school is seeing him. For just a few hours he doesn't feel so out of reach, I get to see him, hear his voice, see him happy with his friends. Jared is fully aware how big my crush on him is. Everybody in La Push knows. Jared doesn't feel the same way about me like how I feel about him, though. I was the girl with cooties he ran away from, then he turned me down for our eighth grade dance, I'm the girl his friends knowingly smirk at and tease Jared about whenever they catch a glimpse of at school.

Despite obviously being annoyed by me, Jared has been nice enough to tolerate me instead of blatantly ignoring my existence. Jared amuses me by saying hi back whenever I greet him, a small daily routine I cherish. He spars me the occasional wink, sometimes he even flirts with me whenever he doesn't know an answer. I'm fully aware he flirts with everybody, it's not much of an accomplishment. I know how stupid I look around him, whenever he's around I can feel the idiotic grin on my face, even worse, how I forget to hold a conversation around him.

My nerves cancelled out all my interesting aspects, like how clever I am, how easy it is to talk with me, how I'm so fun loving yet naturally serene I am, and leave me in a nervous heap of embarrassing eagerness.

I'm just hopeless whenever I am around Jared Cameron.

But he's been avoiding me ever since the incident in history class. It's been a more than a week since he's even looked at me.

It was raining that morning like every morning in Washington State. The classroom was pitch dark right before the projector blinked on at the front of room, then flooded the room with sudden light. A black and white movie recounting an old civil war battle filled up the white board, the old movie stars just made me ache to watch Gone With The Wind instead.

"Don't think none of you have to pay attention," We were warned by our history teacher as he struggled to put the audio on before settling with subtitles, defaulting into a silent movie. "You have to take notes. This will be graded."

It was a boring movie. Specifically, an incredibly inaccurate movie so loosely based on the real events, I read along with my textbook when I almost feel asleep at some parts. It completely failed at holding Jared's attention. He just passed notes between him and Embry Call, well, not so much as passed but balled up, then hurtled them at each other's heads. By the time the lights flicked back when the film was over Jared had hadn't bothered to jot down a single thing. Just a blank sheet, absolutely nothing to turn in.

Half way through the movie I already knew he would ask for the answers.

"Hey, Kim," Reaching across, Jared leaned over my shoulder till we were brushing against each other. I had to hold my breath, if I did rain myself in he would have felt me shudder against him. His jaw scraped against my ear as he lowly whispered. Jared got the response he wanted, me anxiously bobbing up at the sudden closeness. "I'd owe you one if you let me copy-"

Dropping mid-sentence, I feel his body lock up against my shoulder. Too soon I come to the realization. My breath stopped short, sharply lodging at the back of my throat. My hand flew up to cover it up before I could stop myself, but it was too late, Jared saw it. My stupid doodle in the up left corner gave me away. A drawing of a misshaped, crooked heart with Mrs. Kim Cameron + Mr. Jared Cameron forever.

Jared reeled back into his seat, avoiding my eyes. My skin pricked with the scorchign hot sensation of humiliation. My jaw slacked, I completely forgotten how to force words out. I was desperate to say it was a joke, or would have settled for I obviously didn't mean it, I'm not that clingy.

But it was too late. He wouldn't let me explain.

Jared didn't speak to me again, he avoided me for a whole week.

Then the next week, he just stopped coming to school.