Those lips, Drew Torres thought to himself while adjusting his seat in the middle of class. He took a deep breath and looked down at his notes, fearing that everyone was watching him. Watching him while he watched someone else.
Those fucking lips, Drew thought again as he scrunched his mouth up a few minutes later, realizing that he was once again staring. He quickly moved his eyes all around the room, checking to see that none of his classmates were catching where his eyes were lingering to.
Ok, that was the last time. I'm not going to look again, Drew determined in his head. He mentally swore at himself when he found that his eyes seemed to be uncontrollably moving to the right, once again. And there, sitting two rows away, exactly two seats ahead of him was the object of his admiration; Eli Goldsworthy.
Drew had been trying to convince himself for nearly a week that admiration was the only reason he kept looking at Eli, the reason he had been thinking about Eli non-stop. He "simply admired the kid" was his justification...his "sense maker." But why, Drew thought, do I keep looking at his lips...and his eyes...and...
It had all started a week before, on a regular school night. Eli came over to the Torres house to hang out with Drew's little brother Adam. Though Drew and Eli were in the same grade, they had never really interacted much. However, Drew had always been intrigued by the seemingly "emo boy," the kid who, for some reason, drove a hearse. Drew kept it to himself that he actually liked Eli's vibe, liked his style; he was just very interesting.
On this one normal day after school, Drew let Eli into the house, already knowing why he was there. "Hey what's up, dude?" Drew asked, giving Eli a bright smile and taking his handshake.
"Nothing much, man. Same old stuff, really, how about you?" Eli asked, seeming generally interested.
"Well, you look different." Eli said to Drew, scrunching his face.
"What do you mean?"
Eli threw his notebook down on the couch and walked in a circle around Drew as the latter could only raise an eyebrow inquisitively. "Your whole vibe is just different." Eli turned to face Drew, "there's something about you that just seems better...your smile is brighter, and so are your eyes."
Drew chuckled, "what are you, psychic or something?" Drew had been attempting to better himself for a while at that point, attempting to use the mistakes he had recently made as lessons learned in order to become a better man. He wondered if his maturation was just that obvious or if Eli was just that good at reading people, making him that much more interesting.
"Or something," Eli replied, flashing a crooked smirk. "Is it ok if I go up?"
"Oh yeah man, Adam's waiting for you." Eli then walked upstairs and Drew realized that he had been facing the staircase as Eli hopped up, smiling the entire time.
Shaking himself out of it, Drew plopped himself down on the couch and found that Eli left his noebook. Preparing to run up to Adam's room to return it, Drew just couldn't resist the urge to snoop and opened it up. Inside, he found what he assumed to be a play, penned by Eli. Drew delved into the story, becoming hooked from beginning to end; the words seemed to be spilling raw, unadulterated emotion. The characters, their issues, their dialogue: they seemed to come from some place so familiar. Drew felt as if Eli, this guy who he barely knew, had looked into his heart and stolen the words right from inside of him.
Self-insecurity, feelings of unworthiness, fear...everything that Drew had been dealing with, everything that he had been working on was written down in this small notebook. Written by the guy with the sexy smirk and the head full of luscious hair...wait what? Drew felt his face distort confusingly, as he realized what he had just thought...
Dinner later that night was awkward for Drew; Eli had been invited to stay and eat with the Torres family and Drew felt wrong for having thought those things about him, praying to God that the dark haired boy truly wasn't psychic or else things would really get awkward, also feeling guilty for having gone through his private notebook. Things only got worse when Drew's mom brought up Eli's writing.
"So Eli, have you been writing anything new lately?" she asked, passing the platter of porkchops to Drew who didn't even notice the plate of meat in front of his face as guilt washed over his entire body.
"Yeah, actually, I just wrote a rough draft of a play that's been stirring in my head for a little while now."
That was a rough draft? Drew thought in his head, feeling the story was perfect as is.
"What did you think about it, Drew?" Eli asked, turning to look Drew in the face.
Drew's mouth opened wide and nothing came out but murmurs as Adam punched Eli in the forearm, "You let Drew read it before me?"
"I didn't let him, I left it on the couch and when I came back down, my page marker wasn't on the page I left it on."
With his entire family's eyes on him, Drew finally felt the ability to move his mouth return to him and immediately apologized, "Man, I'm really sorry, it was none of my business, I shouldn't have..."
"What? Don't worry about it!" Eli exclaimed as he placed a hand on Drew's shoulder, "It's no big deal. Really though, what did you think?"
Swallowing his food with a deep gulp, Drew prepared to answer the question as honestly as he could without sounding like a complete fanboy. "I...honestly, I loved it. It was...real, and really relatable," he said as he shoved more mashed potatoes in his mouth.
"For real? That means a lot coming from you, seriously man." And once again, he flashed that smirk and Drew felt as if someone had poured the entire bowl of hot gravy down his shirt. "You mind passing the mashed potatoes?" Eli asked, still smirking. As Drew passed along the bowl, he touched the fingers of the boy with black painted nails and had to stop himself from dropping it, and most of all, had to stop himself from staring at Eli to try to figure out if he noticed. What the fuck is going on with me? he thought, that same question being repeated in his mind over and over again that entire night.
And here he was, a week later, with the same question ringing in his head as he looked admiringly towards his right. Suddenly, those deep green eyes met his and he couldn't turn away, not until that fucking amazing smirk popped up again and then thank God, he was saved by the bell.
Drew quickly grabbed his belongings and power walked out of the classroom, intent on going to find some girl, any girl, and look at her, just look at her. He thought about Bianca and how pretty she was, but she doesn't have lips like Eli. What the fuck?! He tried to think about Katie, but she didn't make me feel the way I did when I just touched his fingers for that one moment. Drew had to get away, he had to go the bathroom or something to just think! He increased his speed until..."Hey Drew! Wait up!"
Drew spun around to see Eli running up towards him. "Hey, what's up, Eli. I was just heading over to the bathroom really quick..."
"Oh sorry, I didn't mean to hold you up, I just wanted to get your opinion on something... about my play, but I guess I'll catch you later?" Eli asked, licking his lips after he finished speaking.
"Yeah, I guess so! Talk to you later dude," Drew exclaimed rapidly as he spun on his heel and nearly ran to the bathroom, into a stall, shut the door, and looked down at his pants to see himself nearly protruding out of his zipper.
What the fuck is going on with me?