Leaf walked into school as if it was any other day. She was totally fine. Everything at home with the family was good, her friends were always there for her, and she was dating one of the school's most popular boys, Gary. But she wasn't with him because of his popularity, no, she didn't like him because he was the 'cool kid'—she and him bonded in ways a couple should. They got to know each other, friends at first, but that wasn't before long.
With a nice morning smile plastered on her lips, she trotted down the hall, hugging her green binder to her chest. But she slowed once she noticed the glances and gazes people shot towards her as she passed. They were odd stares she had never thought to see on the faces of other students, especially since they were targeted at her. She slowed even more, eventually stopping. Why were all these faces concerned? Then, her eyes shot up, looking at who was coming towards her.
A girl with dark navy hair and wearing a white beanie came rushing down the hall to the brunette. A worried expression was the first thing Leaf noticed on the girl's face. She stopped in front of Leaf, crouching over with her hands on her knees, panting. She looked up and almost seemed to start crying.
"Leaf…" the girl started.
"Yeah? What's up Hikari?" Leaf was growing anxious herself now. Why was everyone so troubled-looking?
"What about him?"
"He got in a car accident…"
Leaf's green binder collapsed to the floor, causing the entire hallway to go silent and focus on the two girls.
Leaf froze for a few seconds, but then regained sight of reality. "H-He's alive though, right?"
Hikari nodded. "Yeah, but—"
Leaf stopped Hikari and walked right past her, down the hallway to see where Gary was. She opened the door to her first class, and saw him. His right arm and right leg were in casts and his right cheek had a large purple bruise. He must have been hit in the car on his right side. Gary focused on his girlfriend, his eyes serious. Leaf knew the message he was sending through his eyes. It made her choke on her breath. She broke away from his stare and made her way to her desk, where she sat down and found her English homework the most interesting thing imaginable.
Everyone in the room was crowding around Gary, asking him what happened while others glanced at Leaf from time to time, wondering why she wouldn't come over to her boyfriend's side. He was injured, so why? Why wouldn't she come and stand by him? Leaf ignored them all, and Gary's eyes never left the girl.
By third period, Leaf still hadn't said a word to Gary or go near him. Everyone at lunch thought this was odd. Usually, Leaf and Gary are close and always sit next to each other at lunch, having a good time with a good conversation. But…this time, Leaf was sitting all the way across the room from him. What was with her distance?
"Hey, Leaf," Hikari started.
Leaf looked up at her from the table. She had her head stuffed in her history book the entire time, knowing that the beaten up brunette known as her boyfriend was staring at her. She didn't want to look at him. She couldn't. But, she looked up at her blue-haired friend, and replied with a sweet "yes?"
"Aren't you worried about Gary? You haven't gone to see him at all today… Actually, you seem to be avoiding him for some reason. He's hurt, why aren't you going to comfort him?"
"Because…" Leaf started. "…He's not dead, now is he? If he's not dead, I shouldn't have to worry then."
Hikari was speechless from what just came from Leaf's mouth. What was up with her now? Gary was her world. Why is she speaking as if she doesn't care?
"W-Well, tonight's the homecoming game. You're coming, right?" Hikari hesitated.
Leaf nodded. "Yeah, but I don't think I'll stay long."
"Okay then," her friend sighed.
…Later That Night…
When Leaf arrived, she sat away from the crowd, all the way at the top left corner in the bleachers. She didn't care much for the game and read a book instead. 1st quarter; Gary arrived and his eyes would flash at Leaf from time to time, making the girl squeamish. She ignored his eyes, because she knew that if she looked back, he would be able to peer back into her soul like he always could. 2nd quarter; home team was winning, and things became noticeably tense between Gary and Leaf. 3rd quarter; Hikari and her boyfriend, Jun, came and sat next to Gary. Gary was sitting all the way at the bottom of the bleachers because he couldn't climb since his right leg was in a cast. 4th quarter; Hikari told Jun of her worry for Leaf, and they decided to ask Gary to speak with his girlfriend. They thought about it, why wasn't Gary himself not speaking to her? He was just looking at her.
After the game, everyone started leaving. Gary stayed seated in his spot while Leaf did the same. After a thirty-minute stretch, they were completely alone in the bleachers, no one was around. They sat in sheer silence. Leaf's vision did not move from her book, but she did acknowledge Gary's presence—actually, his presence was crushing down on her. 'Don't look, don't look,' she kept thinking.
Then, Gary moved from his seat, and started up the bleachers. It was hard for him since he was wearing a cast on his right leg, but he slowly made his way. Leaf lost feeling in her legs, and she started trembling, realizing he was making his way towards her. Gary finally made it to her, and sat down next to her, staring at her straight in the face. Leaf asphyxiated, her mouth shut but her teeth chattering from the inside. She knew the boy was looking straight at her, but she kept her eyes wide open and glued to the book. Then, tears started coming forth.
Tears rolled down both of their faces.
Gary grabbed her with the only arm he had since the right arm was in a cast, and held her to his chest. She was crying. Her shoulders were quivering and Leaf hid her face in his chest. Her arms wrapped around the boy and her hands clutched his shirt, gripping tighter and tighter. Gary wore a solemn complexion while she sobbed. She then continued to give Gary a piece of her mind.
"I hate you so much!" she screamed into his chest. "I hate you! I hate you! I hate you! I hate you for making me worry so much!"
She removed her face from his shirt and looked him in the eyes, the eyes she had been avoiding all day. "I love you and how could you let this happen to you?!"
Gary looked at her and wiped away the tears streaming down her cheeks. With his only arm, he grabbed her again and held her. Leaf laid her head on his chest, and kept speaking.
"All day, every single minute of today, I've been thinking about what I would do if I had found out you were dead and not alive. I-I-I can't. I couldn't. I couldn't live without you. I wouldn't be able to live without the conversations we have, all the tiny things we do for each other, the stupid arguments we have, a-and, and, a-and not being able to look in your eyes and see the one thing I need, and that's everything—that's you. You're everything. So today, I stayed away from you. I couldn't be near you. I worry too much about you."
Leaf looked at him, gave him a quick kiss on the cheek and went back to staring into his eyes. "I love you so much…!"
She began crying hard again, and Gary gave her a small smile. He hunched down to the same level as the girl, putting his forehead to hers. The girl calmed down and let tears slowly travel down her cheeks. She choked on her tears with her eyes closed while Gary's eyes were shut as well, but he whispered sweet nothings to her.
"But I thought you never worry?" Gary smirked.
"I do about you, and only you…"