As usual I was watching Jane. We were sitting in a cubicled area, shielded from the others. We were alone. She was working on the maths problems that I had solved earlier while she accepted the adoration of another; her friend had stroked on layer after layer of blood red nail polish in supplication. I noticed Jane's difference. She wrote neatly but ornately, using a circle to dot her "i"s while I scrawled rapidly for fear that the flow of ideas would outpace my writing speed. She had a plethora of coloured pens and pencils to my single chewed biro. Her folders were brightly decorated altars to various icons; mine were plain.

She was concentrating hard, her head low over the desk, intent on her work. Her long brown hair kept falling over her notepad and she repetitively swept it away with an irritated gesture. Each time she seemed annoyed afresh that the hair was still there. As she inhaled and exhaled the sweater clad foothills of her breasts rose and fell, rose and fell, rose and fell. Absently she slipped her necklace over her chin and arched, so that it caught there, a rigid curve. I think she enjoyed the taut feeling.

She checked an answer with me and when I told her it was wrong she beckoned me to sit by her, intoxicatingly close. I hastily acceded to her wish, and mine. Now I was near enough to inhale her clean girl scent. She took the luteous chain between her lips and I could almost taste its metallic tang. My thigh brushed hers and I involuntarily shuddered.

She impatiently tap-tap-tapped her pen on the page and I refocused, quickly spotting the sign error and it's consequences. I didn't immediately reveal this, though. I wanted to extend the moment, glorying in the feeling that for once it was her eyes on me. But intellectual egotism soon triumphed and I imperiously corrected the errors with swift, confident pen strokes.

She was bright, the only one worth talking to, so she was entitled to a suspicious frown, as she checked my working. But yes, this time the terms cancelled and she smiled her assent. I breathed in her aroma, felt the warmth of her proximity, exalted in her approval. Certain that she must want me, I said "Jane...you know I...like you?" Immediately I knew it was a mistake. I felt the horror of the "Halloween" teen the instant before he is butcher-knifed to the wall. I silently reproached myself for believing she could be interested in me. I awaited the sharpened steel blade of my fate.

She smiled and took hold of my head with both hands. Her palms were slightly damp on my reddening cheeks. Hope sparked in me as I dared to believe that this was important for her too. She tilted my face so that I was looking directly into her eyes. I could feel myself dissolving into them as she pulled me toward her. She was going to kiss me. She was going to kiss me.

At the last moment she planted her moist lips just above my eyes. Her wordless message was clear: you're sweet but I don't want you. I felt unbearably exposed. Now I couldn't wait for her to leave me alone. She collected up her books. She collected up her folders. She collected up her pencils. It seemed to take an age and all the time I burned. Then she walked away. Her hips undulated beautifully as she moved, or at least I imagined they did, with my anointed forehead on the desk.

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