Chapter 5:

STEP 3: Have a crush on the Unnoticed

How to be Dead

Among the five us, only three has a definite love life: Clarck, Eros and Daera. Daera well, she already found the one. It’s seriously amazing how she immediately found her prince, while I'm stuck. Wait, am I supposed to consider myself? It's not like all I'll be able to find the one up there. Some faith denominations believe but... let’s just pretend that in a way I’ll find my prince in the afterlife, so yeah, I have a messed up love life.
I remember how it was back when we were kids, how we can openly say out loud the names of the people we “like,” our crushes, as we call. I remember how I used to stalk the one I like to the depths of somewhere, and chase after him every time he teases me. Back in 6th grade, was probably my almost fairytale.

His name was Cairo, yeah, like the capital of Egypt, Cairo. Well, according to his stories, his mom had always been fascinated with Egypt and their mythology, that when he was born he was immediately named after its capital. Cairo and i met at a tutorial house when we were six. He was having problems with his speech while I was having troubles with writing and reading as I'm a bit dyslexic. We witnessed each other grew up, we felt something more than brothers and sisters and we accepted that both. Actually his mom even gave us the green light to pursue our relationship. But at sixth grade he was tore from me. When his dad died they were forced to leave the city and move some place else so that his mom can work overseas to support them.

But as I said, almost, those were the memories of the days, back when I was still alive. I remember him promising to come back to me. But how can he return now? Now that the person he promised with has already left. I can’t help but smile and mourn for the days that I hadn’t live properly, for the days that I will never live, for the memories that I have and the memories that I’m supposed to make in time.
I’m actually excelling in Literary Arts but ironically I had always hated Language and Literature classes with a passion. Can’t help it, when all I can hear are the differences between clauses and phrases, for Pete’s sake, when I’m talking and writing I wouldn’t be asked to identify the main and subordinate clauses.
“Me bored,” I whispered to no one in particular as I draw continuous lines and curves on my notebook.
“Who isn’t?” Mil, my seatmate slash a part of my circle of friends, responded, making me turn towards her.
“I hate this class,” I uttered before burying my face on my things placed on my desk.
“Cut that out,” she told me, giving my back a light pat.
I looked up, and stared at her with my already droopy eyes, “Me want sleep.”
“Just narrate some stories to me, okay?” she bargained.
“Me want sleep,” I whispered to her in a weird manner.
“You can’t, our instructor would notice,” she scolded me. How can this girl, a foot smaller than I am, threaten me? Anyway I need to oblige, she has a point after all.
“Okay,” I answered before placing my chin on top of my palms, as I pretend to go on a deep thought. “There was once a girl named Eris, and she’s really sleepy. But a witch named Mil tried to stop her. The End,” I proudly narrated.
“Eri,” Mil whispered angrily. “I’m doing this for your sake. How could you?”
“What did you say? Kuja ss in Kuja Pirates from One Piece? I never pegged you as a One Piece Fan.”
“Eri, please,” she said with irritation lacing her tone.
“Ero, she’s bullying me,” I whispered a bit louder, enough for Eros to hear, who’s sitting three chairs away from me.
Sadly, all he did was laugh at us. He didn’t even try to defend me….
“Eris, seriously,” Mil said in a menacing tone.
“Okay, chill,” I uttered in a sing-song manner before the event from our last group practice came crashing back on me. “I’m serious already.”
I came closer to her as I spoke the first few words to my story. “Well, you know we had a practice last time right?”
“Then?” she asked with not a single trace of enthusiasm, but I didn’t bother and just continued my story.
“And then, while practicing they left me, their leader, behind to talk about some gossips. Do you know how that feels?” I hysterically added. “I was actually expecting Mae, Illian, and Eros to apologize but… the person who I was expecting to apologize didn’t. Instead, the one who apologized was someone I’m not really close.”
“Maybe that’s why he apologized, because the two of you weren’t close,” Mil suggested.
“That would be the circumstance if the one who apologized was a girl. But he’s a he, not a she,” I told her, making sure to make things clear to her.
“Where are you staring anyway?” I ask her the moment I finally noticed how her attention is divided: to me and somewhere – or someone?
“I’m staring at a ‘who’,” she openly admitted as her eyes went huge the moment she realized what she had just said.
“Who are you staring at then?” I asked curiously with my chin placed on my palms while a playful toothy grin is plastered on my face.
“No one,” she denied, but when I traced her dreamy stare into somewhere I figured out who he was. “Billy.”
“No,” she cried defensively.
“What you just did was a dead giveaway sister, you’re staring at Billy all this time.”
“Okay, you got me,” she answered dejectedly.
“You’re crushing on him?” I asked curiously.
“Duh, we’ve been on this seating arrangement for a month or so, and don’t you dare deny that all these time you’ve been staring at him.”
Mil created some weird sounds trying to drown my words. “Oh come on Mil, I’m sure you’re talking, and thinking all sort of things about him. You can’t stop staring at him, but when he’s up close you suddenly go mute as your heart rate increase. Just admit it.”
“Okay, okay I like him. Happy?”
“Yeah,” I answered chirpily, before taking the class seriously.
The ringing of the school bell was usually the sign for our group to huddle and talk about random things. But the moment I heard it I suddenly felt myself drowning in my own words, as Reiss passed by carrying his backpack.
‘You’re talking and thinking all sorts of things about him.’ These past days all I’ve been thinking was of that whole apologizing thing, and how idiotic I was of not noticing him. He’s always a part of my thoughts and you know what I’m enjoying it.
‘When he’s up close you suddenly go mute as your heart rate increase.’ Then everything came to me like a wave of cold water, am I crushing on him? I immediately swallowed my thought as I join the huddle of our group.
“Hey, Eris is here,” Illian announced.
“We are talking about Eris here, I guess she doesn’t have one,” Mae confidently said crossing her arms.
“Don’t have what?!” I asked slightly hysterical and confused.
“Crush,” Mil answered, sparing me from all the confusion, as she narrates who among our group likes who.
“I do,” I answered nonchalantly.
“Who?!” they all asked in chorus, outraged of my sudden confession. Gladly, our conversation was immediately cut upon the arrival of our instructor; I wouldn’t want the whole group to know. I have to confirm it with myself first.
I grabbed a piece of paper and wrote the words. ‘I, Eris Wate, like Reiss Anderson’. It may look so elementary, but it felt so right and sounded even better. I re-wrote his name on another paper and showed it to my chosen friends. Yeah, I’m so crushing on Reiss Anderson, the unnoticed.

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