“I’m glad you came,” Malcolm said as he moved in front of her. “I want to ask you something.”
Milly tried to swallow but her throat was dry. She looked up at him, nervously. “You do?” she squeaked.
“Can I kiss you?” he asked abruptly, pressing a hand to the wall near her shoulder.
Not trusting herself to speak, Milly slowly nodded. ‘This is it,’ she thought. ‘My first kiss. What do I do?’ As Malcolm moved his face closer to hers, Milly closed her eyes, waiting for the touch of his lips.
Without warning, she felt a rush of air, heard a groan and a thud, and she quickly opened her eyes. She felt her heart skip a beat as she looked up into blazing green eyes. Flynn’s eyes. And she noticed Malcolm in a heap on the ground.
“Flynn!” she said, a hand to her chest. “What are you doing?”
“What am I doing?!” he yelled, looking like a wild man. “What are you doing?”
Confused, Milly looked at him. ‘Why is he shouting at me?’
“What did you think was gonna happen if you met him back here?” Flynn asked, with a sharp chin movement in Malcolm’s direction.
Frowning, Milly found her voice. “I knew what was gonna happen!” she shouted, annoyed that Flynn had spoiled her big moment. Flynn looked at her in disbelief, the disappointment clearly evident on his face.
“I’m not a little girl,” Milly told him, clenching her trembling hands.
“Yeah, you’re so grown-up,” Flynn mocked, looking like he wanted to hit something.
“You never pay me any attention so what do you care?” Milly challenged. “You’re not my boyfriend, Flynn.”
Taking a step back as if she had pushed him, Flynn glared at her. “Thank God for that,” he answered hoarsely, turning and stomping across the gravel. Milly watched as he disappeared in the distance and stood dazed, her heart beating fiercely.
Movement at the corner of her eye made her turn her head and she realised she had an audience. ‘Half the school is here,’ she thought, shocked, and noticed Malcolm brushing himself off, the front of his shirt missing its buttons. “Malcolm,” she said, belatedly. “I’m sorry.”
“You could have told me,” he said, dejectedly.
“Told you what?”
“That you like Flynn,” he replied.
“But I...I don’t,” she stammered.
“We all saw it,” he said, bitterly, waving a hand towards the crowd. “You and Flynn having a lover’s fight.”
“But...” she began.
“Don’t,” Malcolm told her, palms in the air.
Milly watched as he trudged across the gravel out of sight, and she hoped the crowd would disperse as well. ‘I want the ground to open up and swallow me,’ she thought, unsure of what to do.
With Malcolm gone, the throng of students began to move away, but Milly could hear the whispers. “Why’s she got two year-tens fighting over her?” she heard, and leaned back against the wall of the building, wondering how everything had gone so wrong.
Hearing footsteps, she looked up and saw Patty and Jenny move towards her. ‘Oh, no,’ she thought, realising that they must have told Flynn. Patty and Jenny stood in front of her, staring.
“You and Flynn?” Patty asked in astonishment.
“Why didn’t you tell me you liked him?” Jenny enquired.
Embarrassed, Milly felt her blood boil. “I don’t!” she exclaimed, angry at the mess Flynn had made and left for her to clean up. “I don’t like Flynn!” she yelled, pushing herself off the wall. “I hate him!”