note: first of many 30-minute short story exercises
“I think Jesse and Hannah have a thing for each other,” Annie said, as she scratched her bare knee.
“Yeah, I was thinking the same thing,” said Eduardo. Eduardo reached into his backpack and took out the remaining half of his turkey sandwich from lunch.
“You always buy your lunch at Han’s, right?” Annie asked.
“Yeah, I never wake up early enough to make my own,” he said. He took a bite and regretted not having put enough mayonnaise.
“You should make it before you go to bed. That’s what I do,” said Annie.
Eduardo took a sip of Gatorade. He wondered if he should offer a bite to Annie.
“I have so much homework to do tonight,” she said. “I wish it was Thanksgiving already.”
It was already past three in the afternoon. Although sunny, Eduardo could feel the cool autumn breeze. He wondered if Annie was cold. She wore shorts and a light denim jacket.
“You know, I think Jesse and Hannah would look cute together, although Jesse could be a little taller,” she said. Annie played with her smooth black hair. Eduardo caught a whiff of her flowery scent.
“Hannah could be a little thinner, too,” he suggested.
“You think Hannah is fat?” Annie asked, surprised. Eduardo realized that Annie and Hannah were very similar in shape and size.
“Well, no. But I mean, if you really wanted them to look good together, Jesse should be taller and Hannah should be a little bit thinner,” he said. He regretted having made the remark about Hannah.
“Hmm. Well, I think Hannah looks just fine,” Annie said.
The two of them leaned back against the graffiti-covered brick wall. Around the corner was a Chinese take-out where many of their classmates went after school to get cheap chicken nuggets.
Eduardo looked at his watch. He would have to leave soon for his shift at Food World. He glanced at Annie, who rubbed the backside of her calf. He didn’t think she was fat at all. She had a friendly round face and nice hair. He wondered if they would look “cute” together.
“I should get going. I have to meet up with Julie for that science project,” Annie said.
“Yeah, I need to get going, too,” Eduardo said. “See you tomorrow?”
“Sure,” she said. “Oh yeah, I might call you later tonight. Just to talk.”
“Okay,” he said. “I’ll be home by ten.”
They got up from the sidewalk and headed their separate ways.