“And she’s beautiful. But like the sun. Everyone always says how pretty the moon is because it lights up the darkness, but without the sun, the moon wouldn’t even exist, you know?”

I did. He just didn’t know quite how much.

“I probably sound so dumb right now,” his cheeks flush. He brings his head down, ruffling his copper brown feathers with his fingers. I always called his hair feathers, although he hated it. He hates birds.

“No, it’s not dumb,” I nudge him, “You sound sweet.”

“Yeah,” he scoffs, “because the sweet guys always get the girls.”

“You know she’s not quite like everyone else who goes to this school, right?”

I’m trying so hard not to support this, but everything that comes out of my mouth sounds like something his best friend would say. I can’t switch it off.

“And you’re not like the other boys,” I mutter against my better judgment.

“Yeah, I’m a dork,” he rubs his face vigorously, only encouraging its redness, “What am I am going to do? Hand her a painting I cooked up in my basement over the last six months?”

I frown, “Do you really have one?”

“No,” he laughs, “I’m not that in love with her.”


It rings in my ears like the incessant school bell right behind us. Over and over and over again. He’s not that in love with her, but he is in love with her. Even if it’s just a little bit. Love is love. And this particular love means I’m inevitably screwed.

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