The MC of NASR, Dancer – sometimes called Dan or Danny – is a klutz, in spite of being a dancer. She’s terrified of people and stammers or doesn’t speak at all when she interacts with strangers. On a Friday night, she’d rather sit in the bottom of her closet and draw or photo edit than go to a party. She’s known the MMC, Braxton, since they were in kindergarten but she hasn’t spoken to him since she was nine and in a wheel chair; she said “thank you” when he helped her get a drink of water. So here is the (rough, rough, did I mention rough?) scene when Braxton asks her out. If any of you remember who Reece is from the last excerpt, you get cyber points! LOL
Reece glared at me. “I’ve had enough of your moping around, Lisandra. And I’d appreciate it if I could take you to a party without you having to breathe into a paper bag.”
I was stung. “Thanks a lot.”
“Forget about it.” I gathered my stuff. “I’m not anti-social. I just don’t like people. There’s a big difference. See you after class.”
“Danny, I said I was sorry!”
I started across the lawn, hunching my shoulders against the breeze. Reece and I went through this occasionally, but this was the first time I’d stomped off.
“Real mature, Dancer,” I said under my breath. I even whispered when I was talking to myself. Great. Now I felt doubly amazing. Nice self-confirmation there.
A growl of frustration rose in my throat. I slammed open the school doors.
I yelped. Books and papers flew everywhere and a pencil hit me in the head. My foot landed on the slick cover of a math book and I stumbled straight into the arms of one stunned Braxton Diablo.
“Sorry!” I recoiled backwards, promptly slipped, and landed hard on my bottom.
Braxton rubbed his forehead. (Was there was a red mark there, or was I just being paranoid?) “No problem. My fault.” He put out his hand to help me up.
I reluctantly put my hand in his and he pulled me to my feet. The top of my head barely reached his collar bone. I suddenly felt even shorter than I usually felt.
“I’m sorry,” I stammered. “Wasn’t watching…” I lost my train of thought. Either that, or couldn’t get the words out. Either one, it didn’t matter. The result was that I stood there like an idiot, biting my bottom lip.
“Really. My fault.” Braxton knelt down to pick up his things. I immediately got down to help, and my forehead smacked into the back of his head.
We both put our hands to our heads. I accidentally smacked him in the chin.
“Sorry!” I almost shrieked.
Braxton winced. “Sorry.” He rubbed his chin. “My big head. Here.” He picked up my fallen book bag and handed it to me. “You’d better go before I brain you any further.”
My face was redder than the Bloody Carnage font on my computer. “Sorry,” I whispered.
“It’s fine. Dancer, right?”
I nodded. I didn’d trust myself to open my mouth without spewing apologies again.
Braxton gathered his fallen belongings. I stood right where I was so I wouldn’t create any further disasters. He got the books and papers into a stack, stuffed them into his backpack, and stood up.
“You’re sure you’re okay?”
I nodded again, almost biting my tongue by accident. My pigtails swung crazily, batting me in the face. I brushed them back, nearly taking out my own eye with my polka dotted fingernails.
We stood there for a minute.
“Well,” Braxton said finally. I stared at my shoes. “So, what class do you have next?”
The bell rang. I was saved from the mortification of having to get out the long word “English” while trying not to stutter myself into oblivion. I started walking away as fast as I could.
I stopped and turned back around.
“What are you doing on Friday?” Braxton asked.
I almost had a heart attack. My voice abandoned me. “Uh… um…”
“Cause if you aren’t doing anything, maybe we could hang out? At seven-ish, after soccer?” He started walking as the doors opened and the students started in. “I’ll pick you up.”
“Okay,” I said faintly. But he’d already disappeared into the crowd and I was talking to myself.