Monochromatic Living

MurderWeasel
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Joined: February 18th, 2009, 7:01 am

April 24th, 2012, 5:19 am #1

((Enter Emily Nakoa))

The student center was usually the exact sort of place Emily would not spend her free period. It was dull, boring, and stretched altogether too far. The lockers all looked exactly the same, and the erratically-scattered tables and chairs seemed lifeless at most times. Yeah, there was the spot where the cool kids usually hung out, but Emily didn't see any of them there right now, and without company the spot was as unappealing as any other. In all probability, those friends who did share her time off were somewhere more interesting themselves.

Of course, Emily was in the student center today precisely because it was typically deserted at this time. She had a job to do. In hand, she held her digital camera.

This was quasi-official yearbook business.

Emily was acting in her capacity as one of the photographers and writers for the yearbook, going around and taking pictures of row after row of identical, decoration-free lockers. The rough plan was to make the least aesthetically appealing two-page spread she could, along with some nice text extolling the virtues of the school's liberal policies on student expression. There was just about no chance of that particular project making the final cut, or, for that matter, even surviving a very cursory glance by the editors, but that was okay. The point wasn't to actually publish this. Emily was making something kind of witty to amuse her friends, who'd probably eat it right up. Besides, a certain kind of notoriety came with coaxing the educational overlords into direct censorship.

She moved slowly, taking her time, snapping picture after picture, listening to the fake shutter noises the camera made. She varied things up a bit, trying out different angles, different distances, seeing just how many ways she could take essentially the same photograph. She always tried to keep the lighting about the same, though, a feat made somewhat tricky since flash didn't work too well with the metallic lockers and since a couple of the overhead light-bulbs seemed to have burned out recently.

It wasn't long before what had started out as a joke of a project was actually capturing Emily's attention. Certainly, it was commanding far more care than this sort of thing would normally have. It was almost a shame that nothing was going to come of this. She was almost tempted to take the project in a different direction, to turn it into something legitimately artistic, but she didn't have any idea where to begin with that sort of thing. Besides, that wouldn't really be entertaining to anyone at all.

After a few more pictures, Emily decided to get as large a shot as she could, and moved clear to one side of the student center. Kneeling, her bare left shin pressed against the floor. The chill of the tiles caused her to frown for just a second. It was warm enough outside for a skirt to be fine today, but for some reason the school seemed a few degrees cooler. Maybe the weather had changed. She'd have to go by her own locker to retrieve her coat before braving the streets.

Shaking aside the momentary distraction, Emily held the camera as steady as she could, bracing her hands against her raised right knee, and took a few shots. Perhaps she could blow these up and use them as a background for the whole thing.
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Hunt11
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May 5th, 2012, 6:49 am #2

((Enter Ethan Johnson ))

Ethan sighed to himself as he started to fiddle with his lock. He should be happy right now. Today was one of the rare days where not only did he have a free period at the end of the day, but Football conditioning had been cancelled as well.

Click, click, click, quick pull. Nothing

Anyway, Ethan should have been looking forward to the end of the day, but yet again he had gotten into a fight with his parents during dinner. For the last couple months it looked as if Ethan could have finally reconciled with his parents, but a couple heated words later Ethan once again wanted nothing to do with them.

Click, click, click, click, click, quick pull. The lock was still not budging.

When was the last time he had actually looked forward to going home? Due to last night's fight Ethan could not use this rare free time to enjoy himself, instead he had to come home to hear his parents lecture him again about whatever petty fault he had committed.

Click, click, click, click click, quick pull. Still nothing

"Damn it!" Ethan yelled in frustration as slammed his hand onto the locker causing it reverberate loudly as he felt a dull ache in his hands. Today really was not his day.

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MurderWeasel
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May 5th, 2012, 9:52 pm #3

Click. Click. Cursing. Bang.

Emily frowned slightly as the noise echoed through the student center, drowning out the sound of her camera's shutter. Something had just happened. It sounded like a collision with a locker, like someone had stumbled and caught themselves or had gotten angry and lashed out. She was leaning towards the latter, given that the shout had proceeded the slamming. Whatever the case, it sounded like possible trouble. It also sounded like something a bit more interesting than taking pictures of lockers. Yeah, she'd been working on a project, but she could always finish up later, assuming she somehow needed more pictures. Finding out what was going on, on the other hand, was a limited-time opportunity.

Emily quickly returned her camera to her case, which was slung over her shoulder, and stood. She took a look around, trying to locate the source of the disruption. It didn't take very long. Off to the side a little, just past the boundaries of the shot she'd been working on, was Ethan Johnson, looking pretty displeased with his locker.

Emily knew of Ethan, at least. He was on the football team, which meant that, as a cheerleader, she saw him at games pretty frequently. He seemed like one of the friendlier boys, certainly not like some of the more infamous members and ex-members. He was close enough to her social circles for her to feel pretty comfortable being seen approaching him, so she walked in his direction.

"Is everything alright, Ethan?" she asked as she got closer.

She hoped she'd been right about Ethan being one of the nice boys. It wouldn't be any good at all if he decided to trash the student center or something, even if that was the sort of thing that would make for priceless yearbook photos. Emily was actually a tiny bit nervous, but this was school. There were teachers and students everywhere, even if nobody was in sight right now. No way Ethan'd go on some kind of rampage with all these people nearby, and she couldn't imagine he'd hit her just for expressing concern, even if he did look a bit like the sort who could break someone over his knee. No, she knew all about causing trouble, and anyone who did it often would know that there was a time and a place to exercise discretion.
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May 6th, 2012, 3:10 pm #4

Ethan sighed as he stared at the locker. He should be better then this, as it does no good just violently lashing out at everything around him.

"Is everything alight, Ethan?

Damn it. Looks like somebody had caught him in the act. Turning around slowly he saw Emily Nakoa standing behind him. Ethan had never been sure just what to make of Emily. From the limited time he had been around her Emily had seemed like a nice girl, but the rumours about the girl painted a very different picture. No matter, Ethan was glad for the distraction, and having a chance to figure out how the girl ticked was too good an opportunity to pass up.

Grinning slightly Ethan began to talk. "I am sorry about that, I have just been feeling frustrated for the last couple days and my locker was being unusually difficult." Taking a moment's pause he looked around the center he noticed that beside the two of them it was almost completely empty, so curiosity get the better of him, leading Ethan to ask, "So Emily, what brings you down here?"
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MurderWeasel
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May 6th, 2012, 10:17 pm #5

Whatever tension there might have been in the air drained almost immediately as Ethan turned, apologizing for his behavior and explaining that he'd been having a rough few days. Emily could sympathize. She'd had tough spells from time to time, and it was amazing how quickly little nuisances could build into major frustrations. She didn't really have anything she could offer as far as the locker went; it was unlikely that Ethan would be willing to give her his combination and let her try the lock, especially given some of what she was known for around school. Best not to even offer, to spare them both an awkward moment.

Instead, she thought for a moment, then addressed his question.

"I'm taking pictures for the yearbook," Emily said. "I think our beautiful student center deserves some time in the spotlight."

Hopefully the sarcasm had come through alright there. Emily added a little laugh at the end of her statement, just in case her true opinion of the decor hadn't been communicated properly. She hoped Ethan wasn't dumb. Most of the footballers and cheerleaders weren't half as dim as they sometimes seemed to be viewed as, but there were definitely some weak links in each group.
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May 10th, 2012, 1:02 am #6

Ethan smiled as he heard Emily's comment about the student center. After a moment of hesitation he understood that she was being sarcastic, but what made him happy was the fact that she was not asking him about his family. Due to the recent arguments with his parents Ethan no longer felt comfortable talking about his family with his friends. Somehow, what should have been a simple relationship had become very complicated, very quickly, and Ethan was no longer sure just what his parents meant to him anymore. Shaking his head slightly, Ethan started to respond to Emily's comment.

"I can see why you are so interested in the student center, with its complete lack of colour." Ethan chuckled slightly before continuing on. "Will this go next to the section that focuses on how brilliant our cafeteria is?"

It had been awhile since Ethan had been able to joke around with somebody. Due to a combination of post-graduation concerns and general family issues, Ethan had not had much time to talk with somebody outside of his immediate friends. They were good guys, but too often something would happen to make the conversation awkward.
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MurderWeasel
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May 10th, 2012, 5:23 am #7

Ethan smiled and replied, pushing the joke along a bit himself. It was nice. Already, Emily was glad that she'd wandered over. This sort of easy interaction was just the thing to spruce up a bland, grey afternoon. She didn't foresee making a deep, meaningful friendship or anything, but she was pretty sure she'd already feel a little more personal investment while cheering at the football games. Ethan, grumpiness at the world aside, seemed like a guy she could get behind rooting for. She hoped he wouldn't change the impression his three or four sentences had given her.

She giggled a little at his joke, then replied, "Oh, yeah, we're gonna have a special where we get impressions on the gravy. I'm pushing for a scratch and sniff. Maybe an all-time best radio playlist, too."

Her choices of jokes were pretty instinctual; Aurora had more than its share of easy targets for satire. It was probably the safest thing to work with. There was really no telling how Ethan would react to some of the other humorous topics Emily sometimes fell back on, like how she'd improved a few of the murals in the electives hall freshman year or how easy it had been to sneak answers into the final in math junior year. Most of Emily's friends were pretty impressed by that sort of thing, but there was a decent enough chance Ethan wouldn't be, and she didn't want to burn any bridges right away.

She chuckled a little bit more at her own joke, then said, "Speaking of the yearbook, I'm always looking for new features. You know of any dark secrets from the locker rooms you can safely leak?"
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May 13th, 2012, 11:48 pm #8

What had started as a light chuckle became full on laughter as Emily brought up the idea of a scratch and sniff section in the yearbook to commemorate that unique smell the cafeteria gravy had. It had been a long time joke with Jack that the kids would remain safe from the teachers as long as the food remained bad, for students have to have some of the same rights as prisoners due. This caused Ethan to sober up slightly. Though he had finally started to move on from Jack leavening, EThan still felt uneasy about how drastically his life was about to change. Even if in the unlikely case that he did not go to college next year he would be out of school and in the working world.

This train of thought only lasted for a second before Ethan focused back on Emily and replied, saying, "Personally, the playlist would be the hardest part to achieve, as it would have to be constantly updated with all new crappy songs to truly match what they play in the cafeteria."

When Emily mentioned dirty secrets Ethan froze for a second. Ethan was enjoying hanging out with Emily as a distraction from the bad week he had so far, and while he could see an informal friendship develop if they continued to run in to each other, he did not feel comfortable talking about some of the stuff he had overheard. While nothing truly ruinous had been said, Ethan still remembered what had happened to Jasper, and was worried about accidentally letting something slip that could really hurt some of his friends.

Trying not to let it know how much that question bugged him Ethan replied. "Not really. All of the really dark secrets are already out there, and I don't think anybody is hiding something."

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MurderWeasel
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May 14th, 2012, 3:50 am #9

Ethan seemed amused when Emily trashed on the lunchroom, joining right in. It seemed like the safe target had been the right choice. When she brought up the football team, though, Ethan froze for just a second. Whoops. Maybe she'd touched a nerve there. Maybe things weren't going so well on the team. He recovered pretty nicely, but brushed the question off instead of offering some kind of sarcastic rejoinder like she'd been expecting. Well, fine, that was one line of conversation closed. No problem. Emily could recover from that sort of gaffe easily.

"The team's lucky," she said, giving a bit of a snicker. "You wouldn't believe what goes down when we're getting ready for games. I think you have to be crazy to get on cheer squad. We're nothing but secrets."

That wasn't actually true. Most of the cheerleaders were very nice, open, and at least passingly intelligent. Yeah, there was drama from time to time. Emily was pretty sure a sophomore girl on the squad was turning up stoned to practice about half the time, but she hadn't bogged anyone else down so nobody had confronted her on it. There'd also been some mess when one of the slutty girls got pregnant. Emily had never really cared for her anyways. It had, at least, been a great lesson in how badly one's life could be screwed up due to taking a need for attention too far.

Still, festering pit of drama or not, it was best to defuse things like this, implying that she'd just been swapping sports talk while at the same time letting Ethan's imagination run wild. Cheerleaders as a whole got a pretty bad rap, and Emily figured he could come up with all sorts of potential scandals. More, Ethan felt like a nice enough guy that he wouldn't press too much, so she wouldn't have to worry about getting tangled up, not when she did have a few examples she could produce on demand.

And just like that, Emily was pretty sure things were back on track.
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May 15th, 2012, 1:28 am #10

Ethan sighed quietly in relief as Emily moved the topic of conversation away from the football team. He was worried that she would take what he said the wrong way and spoil the conversation, but thankfully she just let the issue slide and moved on to talk about the Cheer squad. Ethan had heard some of the rumours about what some of the various cheerleaders had gotten up to offer the years, and while some of what supposedly happened was fun to joke about, Ethan did not feel the need to pry into what had been going on.

Feeling the conversation dry up slightly Ethan looked around and saw a flyer for prom and Ethan groaned inwardly. He had never feared any opposite player on the football team, or being forced to fight someone in general, but something about prom just freaked Ethan out. Chances are he would go, and hopefully have a fun time, but Ethan worried that somewhere during the process for Prom, something would go terribly wrong. Feeling slightly curious about what Emily thought of the whole thing Ethan began to talk again. "So, are you excited about prom coming up?"
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May 17th, 2012, 8:12 am #11

[[Miles Strickland Continued From: We Rule the School.]]

A few weeks ago or so, Francis St. Ledger decided to challenge Miles' luck with women. Implications were that Francis could at least get girls, had better luck with them and that Miles was just jealous that he couldn't get any of his own.

Hardly.

If talking to overweight little girls were Francis' idea of having better luck with them, then yeah Francis had better "luck" and Francis could have them, no problem. They both already knew that Miles had no problem with girls at all.

Not like he needed to prove it - but he was going to prove it.

The competition was on. Let's just see which of the two of them would get the better date for prom.

Three good things happened today. His final period class had let him out early due to finishing the article he needed to edit, ahead of time. Football conditioning was thankfully canceled for the day. He didn't feel like doing so much extra work when he was only used as their designated field goal kicker anyway - something he was proud to say he was quite good at. The third was his friend and one of the most attractive girls in the entire school; Emily Nakoa.

Emily was standing right there in the middle of the student center chatting with Ethan Johnson, a team-mate of his from the Football team. He liked the guy. Always an obedient fellow who never acted up, unlike a certain soccer friend who'd recently done so. Miles took a drink of his expensive mineral water to wash out the taste of espresso and popped in a fine smelling breath mint, proven to work well when the situation came. He advanced, listening to their conversation. Something about: The Prom.

Ah yes, excellent timing.

"Hey, you two!" He waved over at and casually approached his two close acquaintances.

"I was just passing by, wondering to myself who that gorgeous young woman down the hall was when all of a sudden I was like - 'wait a second, I know that girl!' I should have known she was you Em'."

The blonde preppy leaned one arm horizontally against the side of a locker between the two teens and gazed at Emily with one of his brightest smiles.

"Oh. Hi Ethan." He turned briefly to greet the other boy before turning back to Emily.

"What's up? Heard you were talking about prom. I was looking for a date, myself. So, who better to ask than the coolest gal I know?"

He gave another sweet smile in an effort to charm her, pretending to blush.

"Would you like to go to the prom with me, Emily?"
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May 18th, 2012, 3:10 am #12

Emily had been correct. Ethan was perfectly happy to move right along and forget there'd ever been any tension. As he glanced around, Emily followed his gaze, noting as the Prom flyer. Oh, right. Prom was coming up. It had Emily a little nervous, actually. Prom was supposed to be a big thing. She wasn't dating anybody, hadn't been in a relationship in a while, at that, and she wasn't entirely sure how her prospects were looking. Going to the dance alone would be a particularly pathetic way to close out her high school years, but it would at least beat bringing a sophomore or something. Still, there was no reason to share all of that with Ethan, not when he'd just casually asked if she was excited. Better to just go with it. After all, if things actually did go well, it would be an amazing time.

"Yeah," she said. "I'm really excited. I love dances."

She was going to ask Ethan something, maybe just return the question, when somebody else called out from nearby. Glancing over, Emily saw that the newcomer was Miles Strickland, which elicited a grin from her. "Hey, Miles," she called out, as he greeted them.

Miles was someone Emily liked quite a bit. He was one of the popular crowd, so he was a good friend to have for her social status, but there was more to it than that. Miles was courteous, funny, and above all clever. Better still, Miles was someone who she didn't have to play up her rebel image for. He was thoroughly respectable, with his grades and his coffee and his family history. He was cousin to the almost-too-respectable Naomi Bell. He was on the soccer and football teams, and he always seemed to be in the middle of things.

In fact, the only negative to Miles turning up right now was that it could spell the end of the conversation Emily had been having, and might actually mean she'd have less to do here. Miles was probably interested in chatting with his teammate. Emily was pretty good friends with Miles, but she imagined they didn't have quite the same sort of camaraderie he and Ethan enjoyed.

As Miles began to speak, though, it turned out that Emily had been very incorrect in her assumption that Ethan was the target of Miles' interest. He was focused on her, leading with a totally-unexpected and quite generous compliment, and only really directly acknowledging Ethan after that. The whole thing threw Emily completely off her stride. Something strange was going on.

And then, it came clear. Miles was asking her to Prom.

Emily stood there for a moment, almost not believing what she'd just heard. Miles was a friend, and a cool guy, but she'd had absolutely no idea that he held any special interest in her. It seemed, however, that she had been mistaken. Miles wanted to take her to Prom.

It took Emily about two seconds to reply.

"I'd love to, Miles," she said, her lips curving upwards into a smile. She could feel warmth in her cheeks, could imagine she was blushing, though thankfully her complexion meant that blushes didn't show too visibly. This was completely unexpected, but in the best of ways. Miles was someone Emily was quite comfortable with, and he was someone in a very good spot in the school's hierarchy. Being his date would give Emily a boost in the eyes of her friends, as well as being genuinely fun and enjoyable. It didn't hurt that Miles was quite cute.

She wondered, for just a second, about the almost casual manner in which he'd approached her. Some boys went all-out, planning elaborate games to ask girls to Prom. Some brought flowers. Miles had just complimented her and then asked. Emily found that she much preferred his method. There was no pressure here. It wasn't like she'd had to worry about crushing him by turning him down. It was just a simple thing between friends.

She was smiling so widely, so caught up in the moment, that she'd almost forgotten about Ethan. Not wanting to cut him out or be rude to him, though, especially in front of his friend and teammate (and, now, her date), Emily quickly managed to say, "Wow. I'm especially excited for the dance now. How about you guys?"
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May 24th, 2012, 9:59 pm #13

(Sorry about this taking so long)
Ethan chuckled at Emily's enthusiastic response. Though he still had misgivings about Prom it was good to hear that people were generally excited for prom, for it helped ease some of the tensions Ethan had about it. Namely Ethan was still trying to figure out who he would ask to prom, for there was no name that truly stood out as not only would he want to with, but how Ethan would have a chance with.

Ethan was about to respond when his team-mate Miles walked in and joined the conversation. Ethan had heard some of the opinions people held for his team kicker, and none of them did he really get. While he could come of as arrogant at time, and at times he could be demanding, Ethan had never found a reason not to like Miles. Ethan appreciated his commitment to the team, and overall, Ethan just found him a good guy to hang out with, for while Ethan had closer friends in the team, Miles was still a good friend.

Ethan was curious just what Miles wanted to talk about with him. With no practice or any other important events in the near future Ethan was unsure just what Miles wanted. It turned out that Miles had came over for Emily, not Ethan. he grimaced slightly as Miles blew him of to focus on Emily, but that only lasted for a second before he heard the true intent of Miles, he was asking Emily to prom. Ethan smiled to himself, Miles had to have broken a record for doing the most casual prom proposal in the history of Aurora High School, which surprisingly enough actually worked. Ethan was glad that it worked out though, it was good to see that Miles got what he wanted, and Emily seems overjoyed and what was to come.

When Emily finally returned the question Ethan frowned slightly before responding. "I am hoping it will be a lot of fun, but right now I am more worried about finding somebody to go with then anything else."

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May 25th, 2012, 3:42 am #14

I'd love to Miles.

Kiss my rear end, Francis: Game. Set. Match.

"Really? That-that's great! Thank you so much Emily. Now you know I need to give you a hug. Can't believe I'm going with the soon to be Prom Queen."

Miles' tone was cordial and elated as he leaned forward to do just that. He turned to his friend Ethan and instantly put an arm around the other boy's shoulder. He wasn't just pretending either. Miles really was happy to hear her say yes and that cheeriness was now going to rub off on his friend.

"How’s it going big guy?" he said whilst giving Ethan a friendly few pats on the chest, before letting go. "Football practice is off today, and I still know we're going to win."

Around this time, Emily mentioned being super excited for prom. Miles didn't even need to say that he was. On the other hand, Ethan didn't seem nearly as happy. Apparently, he wasn't sure if he could find himself a date. In a way Miles felt somewhat sorry for the other boy after hearing that. Ethan was a decent fellow, definitely someone on Miles good side and for that alone Ethan deserved to have a good time too.

"Whoa, don't worry about that. Stick with us man, and we'll find you a prom date in no time." Miles looked at Emily with a smile and a quick raise of his eyebrows.

"Hmm, you should ask one of the girls we hang out with. Stacy Ramsey said she was still looking for a date. I think you fit all her criteria. Why don't you ask her?"
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May 26th, 2012, 5:47 am #15

Things were set, and Emily was excited. She was thrilled to give Miles a hug, though she had to chuckle a little when he talked about her being Prom queen. No, that would be lovely, but it didn't strike her as very likely. She wasn't that popular, and while word of her going to the dance with Miles would probably help her standing, she didn't think it would make enough of a difference to see her crowned.

That was just fine with her. She had a date she liked, so the evening was going to be wonderful no matter what.

Ethan commented that he wasn't so sure about his own date situation, and Emily immediately felt a pang of sympathy for him. After all, she'd been worried about the very same thing until a few minutes ago. Ethan seemed like a nice guy, a guy who deserved a good date to Prom. He was also pretty fun to talk with, so Emily figured maybe she and Miles could hang out with him and whoever he ended up going to the dance with. It'd make the evening just that much better.

Emily's smile broadened still more when Miles offered a suggestion. Stacey Ramsey? That was an interesting choice. A pretty good one, too. Stacey was on the cheer squad with Emily. The girl was pretty nice, even if she could come across as a bit shameless sometimes. Emily was no stranger to dressing up—or down—as the situation required, especially when it came to keeping in the good graces of the popular clique, but she thought Stacey carried it a little far sometimes. Then again, maybe that was exactly the sort of thing Ethan would be into.

"Stacey's cool," Emily said. "I'm sure she'd show you a great night."

It was all she could do to keep from adding a little wink to that statement. She didn't think Stacey would appreciate the insinuation one bit, and she was pretty sure Miles at least would know exactly what she was saying, but at the moment she still had plausible deniability.

"I think it's going to be so wonderful. I can't wait to dance. Dances don't come nearly often enough."

It was hard for her to contain her glee, to keep from hugging Miles every minute or so. He'd just saved her Prom plans. It was still a little bit hard to get used to that.
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