As I turned into the school parking lot, I had a good ten minutes to get to class. I parked my pickup truck near the science building and hurried my way to my history class. I didn't want anyone to stop me to chat. As I noticed that I was close to the history door I slowed my pace and walked the rest of the way. I walked to my seat and put my down on the desk until class started.
History class and the rest of my morning classes passed by quickly given that I all spent doing was taking detailed notes. Since they had left, it had become very difficult to concentrate in class and my grades had started to slip. I completely turned out everything and anyone just to pay attention to what the teacher was saying.
When the bell rang at the end of Spanish class signaling lunch, I stuffed my belongings into my bag and quickly left the classroom. I went to my locker, left my books from the morning classes and grabbed the books for my afternoon classes.
There weren't a lot of students in the cafeteria when I arrived. I immediately went to the lunch line to grab something to eat. My stomach took the time to growl at the moment. I could feel my face heat up around my cheeks. I averted my gaze over the students like I was just looking around in a blasé manner, almost out of boredom, as I cautiously glanced to see if anyone had heard my stomach. I let out a sigh of relief when I discovered that no one had.
I focused my attention back to the line as it started to move forward. I grabbed two small cartons of chicken tenders with mashed potatoes and gravy, some corn and beans, several multiple fruits, a pizza, a carton of milk, and a bottle of water. I paid for the food and drinks and made the way over to the table where Mike, Jessica, Angela, Eric, Lauren, and Tyler were sitting. I felt very guilty of the way I had treated them since they left. I stopped talking to them altogether and sat where they used to sit where I had set my sights on them when I had walked into this cafeteria for the first time. I would just sit there with food in front of me, and I would stare at nothing at all without eating.
I also felt nervous because I didn't know how Mike, Angela, Eric and the others would react to my, what they would perceive to be old, behavior. I had finally reached the table when I suddenly stopped moving and just standing still and staring at them all. That was until I caught the attention of Angela.
I held her gaze until Jessica noticed that Angela wasn't engaging in their conversation. Jessica followed Angela's gaze and everyone else did the same. After a couple of moments, I finally gained the courage to speak.
"Can I sit here with you guys?" I tried to ask casually.
A few moments of silence continued before Angela gave me the okay. She made room for me and I sat down next to her. When I sat down, I looked at everyone before I let out a sigh.
"I would like to say to you all that I sincerely apologize for my behavior these last 3 weeks. My breakup with Ed..." I let out a shallow breath. I couldn't yet say his name without the pain of him leaving me. It just still hurt too much despite the plans I made this morning. After a couple of moments, I regained my composure.
"My breakup was bad and I was in total denial that it happened. However, I have come to realize that I can't live my life like that anymore. So I've decided that I need to start moving forward with my life and would like to make it up to you guys if you'd let me."
There was yet another moment of silence as their brains were processing what I had said. I couldn't take their intense gazes on me that I looked down at my lap. I twisted the hem of my shirt thinking just negative thoughts that I would be shunned from the only other friends I had left since they left. Thinking those, I began to to feel that my eyes were starting to water up and if anyone didn't speak I had this overwhelming feeling that my eyes would overflow allowing the tears to run down my cheeks.
Angela noticed my predicament because she put her arm around in comfort.
"It's okay, Bella. We'll help you get through this together," Angela said in a soft voice.
I managed to glance up at her in surprise. Then I looked at everyone else at the table and saw that they had the same determination as Angela. I tried to smile but failed miserably. I realized then that it would take some time before I would be a hundred percent back to my old self again. I felt hope.
"Thank you guys so much. I can't tell you how much this means to me," I said I response.
"Your welcome, Bella," Mike said with a semi-huge smile on his face. The others nodded.
"Good. I'm glad to hear it. Listen, I know this is kind of last minute, but I thinking that maybe we all could do something together this weekend, you know, maybe see a movie in Port Angeles on Saturday?" I asked.
They took a few minutes to discuss and at the end everyone was in agreement to go to the movie theater on Saturday in Port Angeles. The rest of the lunch period we talked about classes and other really insignificant things. I had put in my two cents here and there in the conversation and everyone began to warm up to me again. Though I didn't show it externally, I was happy for once since my birthday party. I stopped my thoughts from going further and focused my full attention on the conversation the others were having.
When the bell rang at the end of lunch, we all separated to our respective afternoon classes. Just like this morning, my full attention was listening only to the teacher and writing down detailed notes. As soon as the last bell rang telling the students and faculty that school was over until tomorrow, I put my belongings in my bag and left the classroom. I went immediately to my locker to grab the rest of my books from this morning for homework and walked out of the building.
Walking toward my truck nonchalantly, I waved goodbye to Mike and the others while pulling out my keys. I got in when I arrived, put the key in the ignition and left the school parking lot driving home.