The way he tosses back his head in laughter, as if whatever that girl is telling him is the funniest joke on earth… Why can't I be that girl?
"Iero, you do realize that you are currently dribbling all over your jeans right?"
"Huh, what, I…oh…" I quickly wiped my mouth with the back of my hand and shifted my gaze from Gerard Sexiest-Guy-on-Earth Way back to Ray and Mikey.
"Dude, you look like you pissed your pants!" Mikey snickered.
I flipped him off and wiped napkins across my lap. Ugh. Gerard Hot-as-Hell Way always had that effect on me… I usually limited my staring to when I was alone but today, I just couldn't resist. His jeans were sagging like halfway down his butt for God's sake, and the sleeveless grey shirt he was wearing was showing way too much skin! So I was trying to get a sneak a stare while eating lunch with my supposed "best friends."
But I guess I hadn't been very subtle. Ray's eyes were going back and forth between me and Gerard Impossibly-Perfect Way's table and a slow smile spread over his features.
"Holy. Shit. You like him don't you Iero?"
My eyes widened. "What? Hell no!"
"What?" Mikey tried to follow Ray's eyes but my crazy haired friend was already turning back to me.
"You do. Holy crap, you're blushing!"
"What are you guys talking about?!"
"Iero, just admit it, you… that's why you were drooling all over yourself!"
"Was not! And keep it down, I don't want him to hea-" I slapped my hands over my mouth.
Ray howled with laughter while Mikey still looked as confused as a duck among platypuses.
"Who does he like?" he whined, tugging at my shirt.
"No one." I muttered before turning back to Ray, "I don't like him, what are you talking about?"
"Who are YOU talking about?" Ray grinned.
I had no reply to that so I just had to duck my head and wait for Ray to finish laughing like a maniac. And all the while, Mikey was still tugging at my t-shirt, demanding to know who I had a crush on.
Finally, when Ray had pulled himself together, he grinned like an axe-murderer. "Frankie-boy here likes your brother Mikes!"
My eyes went round with horror. "Shut UP!" I hissed, quickly looking past his shoulder to make sure Gerard Carved-by-Angels Way wasn't looking at us. He wasn't. But his lips were pulled into the sexiest fake pout in history! I moaned out loud.
"Ew, ew, ew, ew, ew!!!" Mikey groaned, "Dude gross! How could you possibly…? Oh GROSS!"
Again, I ducked my head, feeling my cheeks ablaze.
"You should go talk to him!"
My head snapped up. "What?!"
Ray was staring at me with the most conniving look I had ever seen on his face. Which was saying a lot.
"Dude?! N-no!" I stammered.
But Ray had already made up his mind. He stood up, promptly shoving his chair back about six feet and grabbed my arm, pulling me to my feet.
"NO Ray, NO!" I hissed, frantically trying to break his death grip to no avail.
"Any suggestions?" Ray asked Mikey.
Mikey rolled his eyes. "I am still against anyone having a crush on that THING but if Frank must, then I guess he shouldn't embarrass himself… ah… let's see…" he thought for a second, tapping his chin and pressing his lips in a tight line.
"Today would be nice!" Ray said after a while, clearly impatient for my public humiliation.
Mikey snapped his fingers. "Oh yeah, Gerard's a sucker for cheesy jokes and…" he winked at me, "Pick-up lines. Make him laugh and he's all yours."
I groaned. How the hell could I make Gerard Cuter-than-Cute Way laugh when seeing him turned my tongue to lead and my brain to mush?!
"Alrighty then, we're good to go."
And to my utter horror, Ray gave me a violent shove in the back, causing me to stumble right up to Gerard Godly Way's table and nearly fall into his lunch tray. Luckily, I steadied myself just in time. Not so luckily, the sixteen people that sat along the table all ceased their conversations to stare at me.
"Uh, can I help you?" Gerard I-Have-to-Stop-Giving-him-Middle-Names Way asked, not sounding so much annoyed as amused.
I tried to think fast but all I could focus on was the casual way he twirled a fork between his long, elegant fingers, as if it was the easiest thing in the world…
"Hello? Um, you okay?" he asked, waving his other hand in front of my face while still messing with the fork with the other.
"Can I borrow your fork?" I blurted.
Gerard looked taken aback. He stared at the utensil in his fingers as I kicked myself.
Real smooth Frank!
"I kinda already used it, sorry…"
"Oh that's okay!" I said quickly, trying to make up for the idiotic conversation starter.
The girl sitting across from him snorted with laughter but Gerard just looked slightly creeped out.
"No, I mean, it's okay, I don't need your fork I just…" I stammered helplessly.
Suddenly, I felt something light hit the back of my head and turned around to see Mikey mouthing "pick-up line!" and Ray laughing his ass off back at our table.
I turned back to Gerard.
He was still staring oddly at me.
Pickup line, pickup line, pickup line.
"If you were a tree, you'd be a really good tree!"
The entire cafeteria fell silent and I could almost hear the sound of my stupidity echoing around it.
I bit my lip for a few seconds as Gerard nodded slowly, trying to process what I had just said, "Um, okay, I'll keep that in mind if I run out of career options in future."
A loud, collective "Ooooooh…" was issued around the cafeteria.
What? No, I wasn't trying to dis him! Argh! Try again.
"What I meant was… uh… are you a… um… fire extinguisher because you come with smoking hot?" I immediately buried my head in my hands after these words escaped my mouth but I couldn't take them back.
When I looked up, Gerard was fingering a strand of his fire-engine red hair, a slight smile playing at the corner of his lips. "Wow, does it look that bad?"
I felt someone's presence behind me and whirled around to see Mikey and Ray walking quickly past me to the door leading out of the cafeteria. Mikey paused for a split second, right next to me and whispered, "Oh, I forgot to mention, he's King of Comebacks."
Oh gee, thanks!
I took a deep breath, knowing that this was my last chance before I either burst into tears, died of embarrassment or got so dissed by Gerard that I would never dare talk to him again.
"Hey Gerard?" I said meekly.
"Sorry about the idiotic comments, there's just so much upsexy in here."
Gerard wrinkled his adorable nose. "What's upsexy?"
"Oh, nothing much, just trying and failing to flirt with the guy I like. What's up with you?" I replied quietly with a smile.
Collective gasp: from the entire student body.
Gerard's mouth: open in surprise.
And the sound of his sweet, awkward laughter: music to my ears.