When In Doubt, Google It.

Trip knew himself as a visual learner.

Before he left on his journey, he spent months building a knowledge base that consisted of battle strategies, type advantages, evolution, movesets, trainer etiquette, even first aid. He could interpret a text or infographic with ease, storing the information away with a mental photograph for later recall.

His ability to identify and memorize key ideas and facts—the basics—was a gift, and he relied on his techniques for knowledge absorption and application for nearly everything he did, which was precisely why he was so frustrated when they didn't work.

He was coming to discover his methods had their limitations. Even now, he could perfectly recall how it looked when her upper lip quivered into a smile that one time, or describe how her thin, dark eyeliner emphasized her aquamarine irises. As a photographer, he had a trained eye for detail; he noticed little things like that.

The issue was that he couldn't make any sense of it. He was able to note the way his palms began to sweat when she got too close and how his heart rate picked up when she smiled coyly at him, but what did any of that mean? People were not books; he couldn't read her, and he certainly couldn't read himself.

What was he supposed to do? Google "How can you tell if a girl likes you? How do you know if you like a girl?" Well, he supposed he could have done that, but he was far too embarrassed to acknowledge that as a possible solution.

So when that moment came—that moment when, with a teasing comment (he couldn't remember what it was now) and laugh, she leaned toward him and pressed her lips to his—he had no idea what to do. Nothing in his studies had prepared him for this situation; no one had taught him how to respond when a girl, especially a girl who's a couple years your senior, kisses you.

That's why he did nothing; he froze, unable to muster an appropriate reaction, because he was too busy trying to understand what was happening and why it was happening and whether he enjoyed it or not. When she pulled away, he almost told her, "Wait, no, don't stop! I haven't figured out how I feel about this yet, and I need more time!" but she let out an amused chuckle at his mortified expression and left before he had the chance to ask for a second kiss, wishing him good night.

Google it was.