Lisa was her name. She sat two rows ahead of me in Philosophy class. With her back against the wall, she provided only half of her stunning looks for me to drool, admire and envy. Smooth skinned, pointed nose, long hair, and gorgeous body. She was indeed a beauty but what amused me was why such a pretty girl never seemed to have friends. The girls envied her and always had the corner of their eyes trained on her so her tongue doesn’t go wandering in their boyfriend’s mouth. They went as far as watching out for each other and setting aside whatever individual disputes they had going on earlier just because Lisa was involved. The boys feared her unspeakable power.
Five years in the same philosophy class and we never exchanged words or maybe we did but they were too porous to remember. However, we finally did and how it happened, I least expected it. It was one of those days when I was engulfed in the world of poetry and the words kept flowing out of my heart to ink. It can be hard to keep track of time and environment whenever I travel into this other world so it was only expected that I didn’t know anyone was speaking to me until I felt my book being whisked away
“Hey, ” I yelled before looking to see who had just disrupted my flows.
“Sorry. Been talking to you but you weren’t paying attention” It was the voice of Lisa. Lisa was talking to me. Oh, My Goodness. I felt my mouth dry up and I immediately licked my lips unconsciously.
“Oh! Errm that’s fine. I mean, sorry, I didn’t hear you speak”. She smiled at my response and began to flip through my book which she now held. On a normal day, I wouldn’t take that lightly from anyone. I would term it disrespectful but this was Lisa. She was not ‘anyone’.
“So what were you writing?” She asked.
“Well, you have the book in your hands, see for yourself” I replied trying to be witty but cautious
“Wow. I didn’t think you would want me reading the stuff in here but I have a go ahead now. Thanks” She smiled again. I just nodded and watched her eyes skim through the lines of my last poem. I doubted if she would understand.
“I know this feeling” She replied seconds later
“Huh? What feeling? You’re done reading?” I asked confused and surprised all at once
“Yes, I read fast.” another smile. “I know how it feels to be judged based on something you didn’t do. Being misunderstood”
“You understood it” Now I was amazed and excited
“Surprised?” she asked with an eyebrow cocked and a shallow grin. This girl sure loved to smile. I thought to myself.
“Yea, I didn’t think you were into poetry”
“Just as ignorant as the rest” she replied with a shrug. “I will like to go through this. May I?”
“Yeah. Yes. Sure” I replied immediately not sure which was appropriate. “You may keep it for as long as you want”.
I went home that day replaying my encounter with Lisa over and over again hoping I didn’t err or give myself away as an admirer. I laid in bed that night imagining all the new things I would get to discover about her if we became friends. The girl had dazed me with her ability to interpret poetry who knows what else she did or had? I was curious but had to sleep on these facts; Lisa was a beautiful girl, a fast reader, gifted with the ability to understand poetry and Polite.
We didn’t speak with each other again for weeks but she began to notice my stares and would smile. That shallow grin that disappeared too fast.
It was three weeks since our last encounter when I got a text from Lisa asking me to meet her at the school’s hall. I didn’t even know she had my number but wasn’t surprise. Lisa always had a way of getting anything she wanted. I had just finished lunch with my friends. They had brought up one of the many rumors concerning Lisa and how she had slept with Cece’s boyfriend. I tried my best not to chip in but I couldn’t help it. They had no right to judge Lisa, they had no clue as to who she really was. Neither did I, but I had gotten a glimpse of it and that was enough to convince me that she was innocent of many allegations.
We sat beside each other in the school hall taking in the silence and staring into space. I could tell she had been crying.
“I believe you heard the news” She said, bringing an end to the silence
“Yes, but I don’t believe them. They’re just rumours. Right?” I replied sharply. She just stared at me for a while before drawing me in for a tight hug.
“Thank you” was all she said before letting go. She dropped my book which she had borrowed and stood to leave.
Months passed and it was graduation party. Everyone gathered to experience fun as a set for the last time. When it was time for honesty hour, rumours with no basis were clarified and confessions made. It was Lisa’s turn, and everyone was eager to know that which was true and that which wasn’t. She didn’t hesitate to confirm that everything was true.
The disappointment that flooded through me can’t be explained. I was furious and felt betrayed. Always thought I was smart only to be proven wrong. I stormed out of the party feeling ashamed while Lisa laughed and giggled at some expressionless faces while others laughed along with words like “I Knew it”.
She didn’t even care to know why I left. Bet she didn’t even notice. I was just another fool spun in her web of lies and act.