Episode 5

"Hi" I greeted feeling suddenly nervous. 

"And you are?" Adrian's dad asked turning to me. 

"Natalie... My name's Natalie" I introduced feeling a little terrified of him. 

"She's my friend" Adrian added proudly and he nodded, Thankfully. 

"Glad you finally had one" Mr. Smith commented, I could hear his thoughts too, he was really happy Adrian finally had a friend and he was worried as well. 

"I heard it happened again in school today," Mr. Smith said referring to the incident in school, from his thoughts he hate the fact that Adrian was weak which irritate me on my end because he was supposed to be on his side. 

"I'm sorry" I apologized making him stare at me. 

"I got into trouble and Adrian had to put up for me" I defended him. 

"Adrian put up for you?" He asked surprised, he really thinks Adrian is weak, always coiled up and avoiding trouble. 

"Yes...I was surprised he did that despite his condition" I added studying Mr. Smith's expression closely. 

"Nat-" Adrian tried to stop me from further defending him. 

"It's true, what you did was really brave Adrian...since they really outnumbered you, you still stood," I said and that really impressed his dad. 

"Well... That's an improvement son" he said patting his back and Adrian smiled I guess he wasn't used to getting compliments from his dad and was really glad. 

"You guys carry on...I just want to meet your new friend and it was nice meeting her" he smile dryly and that was true, he was really glad Adrian was stepping up. 

"It was nice meeting you too Mr. Smith" I returned cheerfully feeling my nervousness subsided as he turned to leave but he turned back briefly and flash me a cheeky smile before finally heading back inside the house. Adrian was grinning from ear to ear after that. 

"Thank you" He voiced out of the blue. 

"For what?" I asked feigning ignorance about what he meant. 

"For that" He answered with his shoulders high. 

"Come on Adrian, it's the truth" I pouted sitting back with my legs crossed, and he returned back to where he sat as well. 

" are you gonna do...I mean cope in school?" I asked worried since he just lost his face in school. 

"I'm used to it....I'll get through " He replied indifferently but his expression tells me way more than that. 

"Don't worry everything will be fine I'm sure since the culprits have been punished-

"What do you mean?" He asked I was suddenly certain he wasn't aware of Hanna and Bob being punished. 

"Well, Hanna and Bob were punished for ganging up against us" I explained flatly. 

"But it wasn't their fault?" He said strongly. 

"But I could have gotten you out of there in time if Bob hadn't stopped me Adrian," I said and he sigh then I heard Ashley's footsteps approaching, I could tell it was her approaching by her thoughts. 

"Hey" she greeted us casually as she step unto the planks

"Mom asked me to bring over pancakes, she said you might like something sweet to study" She smiled leaving a tray of pancakes in our midst. 

"That's very thoughtful of her...could you tell her I say thanks?" I emarked gratefully. 

"Sure" she beamed delightfully before heading back inside. 

"Here," Adrian said passing one of the pancakes to me. 

"Thanks" I answered shyly I have never eaten out before, or in any other person's house except when I visit my grandparents though, I thought eating as quietly as I can. 

"Did you see the information on the school noticeboard?" I asked immediately after I was done with the pancake he handed to me. 

"What information?" He asked looking extremely clueless, with that look...I could tell he wasn't aware of the signup. 

"Well actually...the signing up of extracurricular activities starts tomorrow, I sign up last year and I'm also signing up this year too, Bloomington extracurricular activities is really fun," I said trying to give an impression. 

"I don't know" He muttered sadly. 

"Are you worried because of your condition?" I asked in concern. 

"Kinda" he admitted head slightly bowed as if embarrassed to look into my eyes. 

"Adrian" I called softly. 

"Yes" he replied looking straight at me, I find it hard to meet his gaze though. 

"Do you want to get rid of your phobia?" I asked. 

"Yeah" he replied enthusiastically. 

"Then put some effort into it," I said trying to gear him up a little. 

"Doing extracurricular activities might be a good start, trying to do things that make you fear to give you the opportunity to confront your fear Adrian, you have to stop running away from your fear, it's time you confront it, fight can do it, I believe in you" I said comforting him.

"You know you sound just like my dad, except he's pushy" He chuckled softly.

"Daddies are pushy" I supported. 

"Thanks for the offer Natalie, but I can't do it," He said ruefully. 

"Adrian you're stronger than you imagine, you can't let everyone keep thinking you are weak," I said trying to persuade him but that was a terrible idea. 

"Even you?" He asked brows flaunted at me in obvious annoyance. 

"No, that's why I'm trying to persuade you to do things that'll surprise them that prove to them you aren't, because I believe you are strong" I defended persuasively. 

"Natalie, please...stop" He snapped with irritation obvious in his voice and I guess he is now annoyed. 

"Sure," I said taking my pen to conclude my assignment, the atmosphere was a little tense after of our conversation. 

"I gotta go," I said standing up briskly with my bag. 

"Sure" he muttered as I got back into my shoes which I had put off on entering into his little house, I walk back into their house to find my way back home then I saw Mrs. Smith in an apron probably making dinner for the family. 

"Oh Natalie, are you leaving now?" She sounded disappointed. 

"Yes, Mrs. Smith" I answered politely. 

"Why don't you wait for dinner?" She offered and I scratch my head for a suitable excuse. 

"I'm sorry Mrs. Smith I have to assist my mom in the kitchen" I turned down politely and she sighed knowing she couldn't beat that. 

"Okay then....anyway it was nice having your company, visit more often, okay?" She smiled brightly and I returned the smile warmly. 

"Sure Mrs. Smith, thanks a lot too for welcoming me" I returned gratefully. 

"Anytime" she concluded and I finally head out I was about leaving their pouch when I heard Adrian calling, I turned and I saw him running after me. 

"Hey" he called cheerfully. 

"Hey" I returned nonchalantly and turn walking with him by my side. 

"I'm...I'm sorry for turning you down rudely, I shouldn't have" He apologized.

"It's alright...I understand" I shrugged but I can't deny I was a little hurt but I felt better after his apology. 

"You should head back, it getting late," I notified. 

"And let you walk home alone...that's not very nice," He said with a silly smirk on his face and I smiled. 

"I went to your house alone, remember?" I pointed out frankly. 

"But as a good host and gentlemen, I should walk you home" He crooned. 

"Let me guess...your mom said that" I stated the obvious. 

"How did you know?" He sounded surprised. 

"I just guessed " I lied, I heard it from his mom's thoughts she was kinda expecting him to walk me home. 

"Won't you be scared walking back alone, what if someone attacked you?" I teased and he quiver in fear. 

"Just really are a scarecrow," I said laughing and that really got him, I can sense he was upset by that but that only make me laugh even more.

"Goodnight" I wished after sauntering into our driveway. 

"You should head back now, don't worry I'll watch your back so some clown won't show out of nowhere" I teased again. 

"I'm not scared" he grunted a little annoyed. 

"I can go back without anyone watching my back" He added confidently. 

"Are you sure?" I asked teasing again. 

"Yeah" he replied skeptically. 

"Okay" I muttered heading inside and I watch from the window as he looked at both sides before taking to his heels making me laugh. 

"What's that funny?" I heard mom ask placing a plate of pie on the table. 

"Mom!?" I called out in surprise. 

"Yes" she answered before calling my dad to come out for dinner. 

"What's the time?" I asked feeling suddenly guilty. 

"Past seven" she replied with a twitch of her lips. 

"Oh... I didn't know I took much time, you should have called" I said dropping my bag at the hallway that leads to my room. 

"Well...I know you were at the Smiths and I didn't want to disrupt you, and funny enough you had so much fun that you totally forgot about the time" My mom shrugged. 

"I'm sorry mom" I said as I help carrying the salad from the kitchen. 

"It's okay. I wanted you to have fun" my mom declared sitting at the dining table and my dad came out right at the moment. 

"Hi dad" I greeted as he took his seat at the dinning table. 

"Hi... I'm glad you are finally free, at least not locked up in that room anymore" My dad huffed and I gave throw him a haughty look. 

"Come on dad, I wasn't locked up" I retorted showing my annoyance. He was trying hard not to think beside me and I'm always trying to shut myself off his thoughts too but I just can't control it

I could hear him thinking I already have a boyfriend. 

"Adrian is not my boyfriend dad" I blurted suddenly irked. 

"I don't like it when you do that," He said picking a piece of meat from his plate and pointing it at me obviously irritated. 

"I'm sorry... I just can't help it" I apologised for invading his privacy though it sounded insincere. 

"Can we all eat in peace please?" My mom pleaded, trying to stop our banter before it leads to another argument. 


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