Chapter 5: And Effect
"Woah! Woah! Woah!" Todd said suddenly breaking away from me. "No Ginny."
"What?" I sputtered as my brain began functioning again.
"Why..." he paused holding up a hand. "Why did you kiss me?"
I covered my mouth and bit my lip. I wanted to cry and laugh at the same time and I had no logical explanation for Todd. Why had I kissed him? That wasn't my intention when I'd gone over to him...I just wanted to talk, to unload...I wanted....I don't know what I wanted!
He stepped closer to me again and put his hands on my shoulders. "Ginny..." he said looking into my eyes.
"You kissed me back." I said suddenly and then regretted it. Why had I said that?!
"So not the point!" Todd said sounding angry at my response to his concern.
I turned away from him and walked to the other side of the pool house. He was right of course, that wasn't the point....what was the reason I'd kissed him...I flashed back to the assignment for Life Studies - the "root" of the problem. Gah that class was going to drive me crazy.
"Ginny?" Todd asked.
"Gah! I don't know Todd! Okay! I just...." I trailed off. "I was....sad, and you were here. I didn't mean to...I was going to talk and then ...." I avoided looking him in the eyes.
"Right....um...I should go." Todd said grabbing his jacket and walking out before I could protest.
I started for the door to follow him. "Wait! Todd!" but the only response was the click of the door closing. "Well done Gin..." I said sitting down with a hmph.
Todd and I sat across from each other awkwardly at lunch. Erik and I sat next to each other awkwardly at lunch. In fact the only people not awkward were Veronica and Timothy. Thankfully I could always count on Veronica to keep the conversation going - although I couldn't tell you what she was rambling about today as I wasn't listening. I was putting all my attention on eating my food and not looking at Erik or Todd.
"Um Earth to Gin!" Veronica was saying waving a hand in front of my face.
"Hmm?" I asked looking up. Erik, Veronica and Timothy were all looking at me curiously. Todd was looking at his food.
Veronica rolled her eyes. "I asked if you had a pop quiz in Spanish today."
I blinked at her and it felt like my brain was processing at a snails' pace as I though back to second period Spanish...yes, yes there had been a quiz. I wondered if I even fill any of it in now that I though back on it. "Yeah." I said returning my focus to my food.
I realized I was done and stood to toss my tray at the same time Todd stood. We locked eyes on each other and then turned to walk to trash cans on opposite ends of the cafeteria even though there was one a few feet away from out table. As I walked away I heard Veronica's voice. "What is with them?" she asked. I looked back and Erik was watching Todd, Timothy was just shrugging.
I avoided most of my friends for the rest of the day. I was packed up and ready to leave the moment the last bell rang for Life Studies and practically bolted from my desk to my locker. But Veronica and Timothy weren't about to let me go that easily.
They stood on either side of me as I stared at my locker, too distracted to think of the combination. "Are you going to open it?" Timothy asked watching me.
"Timothy and I are running away together." Veronica said. "I'm going to have his love child!" she added.
Timothy looked at Veronica curiously and she just grinned. I didn't hear any of it or notice their exchange.
I was vaguely aware of Veronica stepping around me and closer to Timothy but I was still looking at my locker trying to think...or trying not to think perhaps.
Timothy didn't protest in the least as Veronica pulled him into a lip lock in the middle of the hall. Several more observant people turned to stare. PDA wasn't all that uncommon in the school halls but kisses like this were usually between the established couples. When they finally broke apart and found I was still inattentive, Veronica grabbed my shoulder and spun me around to face her. "You're acting like a zombie half the time and jumpy cat the rest of the time! Spill it girl! What did you do?" she asked.
"Who says I did anything?!" I asked defensively. "Gah, just get out of my face V!"
"No! You're driving me nuts! First the moping about Erik and now you and Todd are acting all nervous...." Veronica said as the realization hit her. Her eyes went wide and her mouth popped open in shock. "You and Todd?! What ARE you thinking?"
I shook my head hard. "No! No! No! there is no me and Todd...nothing..." I stammered. "You shouldn't assume things!"
Just then Todd walked by and turned to look at me as I said his name. We looked at each other for several seconds with Timothy and Veronica looking back and forth between us like a bizarre tennis match.
Another moment longer and Todd walked on. I looked once more at Veronica and Timothy and then walked the other direction.
Veronica looked between the two of us and then back at Timothy. "When did WE become the normal ones?" she asked him.