Timeline: Before 'Ducky, Diary 2'. It may be a little messed up. Sorry.
A/N: Hey! Finally a reason to write in second person!

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Sometimes, it feels like nobody cares about Alex except you. All Jason (sorry, J) does lately is sit, snort and spit with the jocks, too busy acting like the biggest jerk around to actually CARE about his old friends. Not that you really expect anything anymore from him, but still, he could at least have enough sense not to make 'fag' jokes when Alex is around. He knows that it really upsets him. Jason must remember that his father used to call him that before he left, back before any of you knew what it meant. It's all those looks and the whispering in the hall that make him so uptight. Hey, they make you feel rigid, and you're not the one who's depressed.

Not that this is about you. Could you be any more self-centered?

The answer? Yes. You could be more like J.

See, this is why you hang out with eighth grade girls. They don't make cruel jokes for their own amusement at the expense of their old friends. They don't sit there and ignore you while you desperately try to provoke any sign of life from them. And, hey, the fact that they actually appreciate you doesn't hurt either. Even Sunny, who's mother is in and out of the hospital with cancer, still manages to smile and say hi when you see her in the halls. And you don't have to worry about what it means, like that she's going to ask you to dinner and show up with some girl who you don't know, and who - by the end of the 'date' (because that's what it was intended to be) - wishes she didn't know you.

Which is so off topic, but there it is.

Maybe there's a lesson in this. Maybe you should stick to hanging out with your friends who like it when you act like yourself and who you can have an actual conversation with that doesn't involve 'babes,' sports, and stupid nicknames, or one that when it's over you don't feel so depressed that you just want to crawl in a hole and never say another word.

But since when had self-preservation ever been high on you list? And besides, Alex needs you. Needs you for what, you're not sure, all you ever seem to be able to do is babble like an idiot, but you can't just shut him out like he's been trying to do with you, because you know what it feels like, and you can't just abandon him. So sticking with what you're doing is the only option. Even if it kills you.

Which it very well might.