Shona was a nerdy girl with thick glasses. She was a junior in her middle school. She was in love with the hottest guy in the entire school.
And now, she told him that she loved him.
“Haha! Shut up. Nobody would like you! Who do you think I am?”
Shona had feared he would say something like that. She was devastated. She started running. She didn’t want to face him ever again. All these thoughts and feelings ran throughout her head. Until, she bumped into something.
“Hey, whats up?”
She had bumped into Raj.
“WHAT?! I’ll GO TELL HIM! WHERE DOES HE GET THAT NERVE! SOMETIMES, I DON’T KNOW WHY I’M HIS BEST FRIEND! THAT’S IT! i’M GOING TO GO BEAT HIM UP!”
“NO! Raj! Don’t do it! It’s not his fault. I was the foolish one to think we can ever date.”
” No, it’s OK! I should go.”
” Shona… Raj grabbed her by the wrist as she was getting up. Don’t go.”
Shona stared into his eyes and felt so warm and fuzzy; a feeling she didn’t feel for a long time. But, she looked away. She saw in such a long time, it felt awkward to feel it again. And then she gently took her wrist out of Raj’ grasp and slowly walked away from him with tears in her eyes.
“Dammit, Raj! You really did it this time! Shona just left you! And why are you trying to hit on her?”
Raj walked back home with his hands stuffed in his pocket. Thoughts of Shona ran throughout his head. He didn’t want Shona to be hurt by a jackass. He wanted to show her that he loved her. He wanted to show her he cared. But Shona just seemed to ignore him. And then, something ran into him. He crashed on the ground and saw Shona was on top of him. She seemed to not know whom she crashed into. Raj smiled.
“Oh, I’m so sorry. I’m very, very sorry. I should have been more careful.. I’m sorry. Can I repay you somehow?”
“Shona”, Raj said, lifting her chin and brushing her bangs. Shona looked through his soft eyes and almost melted.
“Raj…” said Shona. Suddenly, she started crying. Raj was shocked.
” J-Shona? What’s wrong?”
“I’ m s-s-such a f-fool! H-How c-c-can I th-think t-that G-Gyung H-Hoon c-can love me?”
“Shona.. I would not call that foolish.. I actually admire you going up to him and confessing. However, crying about him is indeed foolish. Shona, Don’t cry about that jerk. Here, let’s go to my house. We’re right in front of it!” Shona nodded.
Raj led her to the bathroom.
“Take off your glasses. We need to wipe those tears off.” He said with a smile. Shona took them off without a word. Raj turned on the water and wet a washcloth. Then, he gently wiped her tears off her face.
” Raj.. Do you love me?” Raj was startled by this comment.
” Why do you ask me that?”
” Because.. it seems like it. Do you?”
” Haha! Shona, you are my friend.”
” Oh.. OK. I think I’m not so teary now. Thanks, Raj.”
” No Problem. Do you want something to drink?”
” Um… OK.” She followed Raj out the door.
He handed her a glass of orange juice and they sat down outside on a bench.
” Are you going to be all right?”
” Yeah.. Thanks. But I don’t think I’ll be able to face him again.”
” When he calls you something bad, just yell my name. OK?”
” OK.” she said with a small laugh.
” But what are you going to do when I call you?”
” I’m going to beat him up!”
” What if everyone starts hating you?”
” It doesn’t matter. As long as the one girl I love is happy.”
” Ooh, Raj! You like someone?”
” Yeah.. Guess. I’ll never tell you until you get the right answer.”
” Hmm… is it Amy? She’s pretty! What about Lauren? She’s nice and quiet. Or is it Becca? She’s generous. Or maybe it’s Courtney! She’s not all that nice though…”
After a few tries, she gave up.
“Who is it? I’m dying of curiosity!”
” Let’s see.. she has glasses.. she’s in love with Sweetu, she’s sitting right next to me! Shona let out a small gasp.”
” M-Me?” Raj nodded. Shona almost passed out.
” Raj! I have declared you crazy.” Raj started laughing.
” Why won’t you believe me? I like you.. I want you to be my girlfriend.”
” But you’re the second hottest guy in school! What if everyone criticizes you for bad taste in girls?”
” I don’t care¦ I told you. As long as the one girl I love is happy.” he said, smiling.
” No, really, Raj. No games this time. All serious.. all right?”
” Yeah.. I know.”
” Oh my god…” Shona said, covering her mouth with her hand.
“Shona, I just want to be the right guy for you.” he said while putting his arm around her shoulder. She leaned against him and for the first time, she felt accepted by someone special.
“But, Raj! Why did you say I was just a friend before?”
“Umm! I didn’t feel like it was time yet.” Shona nodded. She knew how hard it was to say, “I love you.” She knew how nervous you would feel. And she knew how hard it was to feel the reject.
“I understand, Raj. I’m just glad you told me. I’ll think about it.”
“Shona, do you still like Sweetu?”
“What has he got, that I don’t?”
“I just don’t know! I mean! you two look the same! you guys wear things all similarly! but! I like Sweetu better.”
“All right! I’ll make him like you. He knows he’s not going to win in a fight.” Shona wrapped him in her arms.
“Raj! I’m all right. You don’t have to do all that.” And then he wrapped her in his arms.
“Sweetu, can I see you for a moment?”
“What up, dude?”
“It’s about Shona!”
“Oh no! don’t tell me about that ugly! I just barf when I hear her name!”
“SHUT UP! DUDE, YOU JUST HAVE TO GIVE HER A CHANCE! WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU?”
“Hey! I have other girls who want me. The least thing I need now is another girl who is ugly and slow liking me.”
“She’s not ugly and slow! She’s kind and beautiful in the inside when you get to know her!”
“Wait! do you!?”
“Yes! I do!”
“Haha! Then why don’t you date her?”
“Because! she’s in love with a jackass!”
“STILL? Haha! Man, she’s hilarious! After I rejected her like that?”
“Hey! please! it would mean a lot to me! just say that you at least like her as a friend and apologize for what happened last time. Man, she came running all the way to my house and started crying! She was just! out of control, man! Just tell her that! please?”
“You’re the best!”
“Hey, Shona! I’m sorry for what happened last time. I was sort of tired and grouchy. I wasn’t in a good mood. I never wanted to say it that way. I like you as a friend. And I want to keep that relationship. All right?” Sweetu let out a hand for a shake. Shona nodded. She let out her hand and they had a friendship shake, which made Raj smile.
“See? Sweetu likes you! He just wants to keep the relationship just as friends! All cool with you?”
“Yes..” she said softly. Raj took her hand and walked away with her.
“You all right, now?”
“Yeah!” she nodded. “But he only wants us to be friends! because I’m a nerd!”
“Shona! Why don’t you ever think about me? You know he’s a jerk! Why do you mope around for that! So what, if he doesn’t like you! Everyone is different, Shona. To my eyes, you are a beauty. You can’t always think about him! There are other guys out there for you! Not just Sweetu and me! I really don’t want to see you like this.”
“Raj! Do you really love me?”
“I don’t think I need to answer that!” They stared at each other for a long time.
“Raj!” She tried to push him away and he staggered a little.
“Shona! answer this for me! do you love me?”
“Raj, I never intended to be your girlfriend. I just want to be your friend.”
“Oh, I see! you’re treating me like how Sweetu treated you. You don’t want to be my girlfriend because I’m way different than you. You don’t want to be my girlfriend because I’m better looking than you and you’re afraid that people will jeer you because of that. Well, you know what? I don’t care about any of that!” And with that, he grabbed her and locked her lips into his. After a while, he moved away.
“Oh, you really do love me!” She hugged him.
“But, Shona! do you still have feelings for him?”
“Yes! I always have, and always will.”
“Do you want to be pretty? Like those girls over there?” Raj pointed to a group of girls. They all had big hoop earrings and what Shona noticed was that they did not have any thick glasses like her. Shona nodded. She was pretty ashamed about it.
“It’s all right, Shona. All girls want to be good looking. Even they were ugly once. Everyone is.”
“Sure! I used to act like a girl once. I always thought about my appearance, my clothes, and my hair ; just like a girl.”
“Haha! That’s funny!”
“It’s good to see you laugh. Now, Shona. I’ll help you become pretty’. Then will you be happy?”
“I don’t know. I’ve never been attractive in my life..” she said innocently.