27 of 183

Day 27—Exchanging Phone Numbers

            By less than half a week before Homecoming, word had already been leaked that Marianne Willis and Leonard Astor were an item. Rumors flew thick and furious, whisperings about how Marianne had changed her look to fit “Leonard’s type” better. Henna thought that the public’s assumption that Leonard’s type was her type of person was hilarious. There were rumors, too, about how Marianne was a bitch, a slut, how she quickly she had changed boyfriends. None of this seemed to faze Marianne, though Leonard was beginning to think that she was a little clingy.

            “Leonard!” Marianne ran over to Leonard as he was walking to the bus stop with Sara and Theo. She was holding her light blue peasant skirt out of the way so that she wouldn’t trip. Her hair was braided into a loose plait, which was streaming behind her like a tail as she ran. He stopped walking. “Leonard!”

            “Yeah?”

            “Can I have your phone number?” she asked, all eager eyes and smiles.

            Sara shook her head with a condescending smile. “You two lovebirds have fun. We’ll stall the bus for you if you aren’t done by the time it gets here.” She tugged on Theo’s arm and they walked the rest of the way together to the bus stop.

            Leonard sighed and pulled his phone out of the pocket of his jeans. “Okay, here, switch phones with me and I’ll enter my contact information into your phone and you can enter yours into mine.”

            Marianne nodded seriously. “Okay.” They switched phones, and Leonard created a new contact on her phone with his name and phone number. Then, he waited patiently for Marianne to finish.

            In the few seconds it took to snap a picture of herself in a cutesy pose, a brown haired blur rushed past them, dashing to make it to the bus stop before the bus, which was trundling up the street, passed it. It ran into Marianne, accidentally jostling her and ruining the picture.

            “Ack! I’m so sorry!” Ricky apologized, reaching out his hand to steady her. “I’m late for an English tutoring session. No! Don’t go!” he shouted in dismay as the bus passed him.

            “It’s okay, Ricky,” Leonard said, deftly switching his phone with Marianne’s phone. He pocketed his phone. “Sara and Theo are at the bus stop. They promised to stall for us.”

            Han strolled up behind them. Marianne’s eyes widened as they took in Han’s full height. “I told you, so,” he said to Ricky. “I could have driven you there, too.”

            “But I like the bus better,” Ricky pouted.

            “Whatever,” Han said, rolling his eyes. “Go catch your bus.” Ricky waved goodbye and scampered off. Han sighed with resignation when Ricky left. “I should go get my car.” He strolled back the way he came.

            “Wait! How tall are you?” Marianne asked.

            “Forty-two.” Han waved casually to them and walked back to campus.

            Marianne looked after him, confused. Leonard awkwardly cleared his throat.

            “Well…I’m going to go catch my bus now. Bye.” He kissed her on the temple and left her standing there in the middle of the sidewalk, trying to figure out what Han meant by “Forty-two”.

[Next Chapter ==>]

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