Quarrel in the Quadrangle

18th February 2004

Taj came and sat with our group today. I have to admit… he did really well. Aside from all the staring that he was getting from the other groups around us, he also had to put up with my friends giggling at us from a distance (they were too scared to come near us), but then it got really hot and they were forced to come and sit with us in the shade. They kept quiet while we were talking, but Jenny plucked up the courage to join in. Then Amy. And then the rest of them. Seriously, it was literally like watching dominoes fall.


So yeah, recess was perfectly fine. But lunch? Well, that was a little more stressful.

I met Taj out the front of the canteen. I was starving – I was way too nervous to eat in front of him at recess, so I scoffed down my packet of Dunk-A-Roos and the chicken sandwich mum made me this morning during the last 10 minutes of Independent Living. I think Mrs Giannopoulos knew I was eating in class, but she didn’t do anything about. She is like, the BEST teacher ever. Anyway, when I met up with him, he asked if I wanted anything to eat for lunch. Considering I had just eaten a WHOLE meal in like, 10 minutes, I wasn’t feeling very well at all. I politely said no, and waited in the lunch line with him while he got a sausage roll. I think I’ll get more comfortable eating in front of him the more I see him… otherwise, I think I’m going to starve.

I don’t know why, but I just get so nervous when I have to eat in front of a guy I like. I think I’m just worried that he’s going to make fun of me, or like, I’m going to accidently spit food out of my mouth. Or get food stuck in between my braces. Or have bad breath after eating. Seriously, the list could probably go on for ages; it’s just one of the many things that I’m uber self-conscious about. I know that is sooooo stupid, but it really gets to me. I hope one day it changes…

Anyway! I was happily waiting in the line with Taj, when I saw a familiar face about 5 people in front of me. I went to raise my hand subconsciously, but then I lowered it just as quickly. Taj looked at me funny, so I went to scratch my neck instead.

It was Adrian.


If he turned around and saw me with Taj… I’d be dead.

Well, not dead, but like, dead to Adrian. If you know what I mean.

I shuffled closer to Taj, to which he responded by putting his arm around my shoulder. I panicked. I couldn’t exactly throw his arm off me; it would cause suspicion. But I could pass it off as a public display of affection, which he knows I’m not ready for yet. So, I reminded him of that, and he removed his arm straight away.

Ok. Plan B.

“Hey Taj, I need to go to the toilet. Can I meet you at my group?”

“Uh… sure.”

Aaaaaaand I was OUT of there!

Talk about a close shave!

But seriously, why was Adrian even at the canteen? He normally brings his lunch to school… and he sits at the back of the school, so he doesn’t usually come through the quadrangle at all. I did consider actually going to the toilet and waiting for Taj back at the group, but I couldn’t risk Adrian seeing me with him.

How the hell did I forget about that little detail?!

I watched Adrian from the corner of the gym (the part that overlooks the canteen area) as he walked along the back of the quadrangle, and disappeared from my sight. It was such a relief. Seriously. I don’t really know what would have happened if he saw me with Taj.

I made my way back to my group and talked to the girls while I waited for Taj to come back. I didn’t have to wait very long; he got back, like, 2 minutes after me. He seemed a bit surprised that I was back from the toilets so soon, considering they are over the other side of the quadrangle. I let out a nervous laugh and told him it was a false alarm.

He bought it.


But the drama didn’t end there. Aaron decided to join our group at lunch time too. Lauren was pretty surprised, considering she is always the one that goes over to see him most of the time. But he wasn’t really interested in seeing Lauren…

“Hey Lauren, hey girls,” he said lazily, “How are you all?”

He received a mixed response. Lauren looked a little anxious. I could tell something was up.

“I see you’ve got a new addition to the group,” he said observantly, as he looked over to Taj, “I haven’t seen you before.”

Taj leapt up and extended his hand, “I’m Taj. Nice to meet you. Are you are?”

Aaron looked at his outreached hand and folded his arms, “Aaron. I’m Loz’s boyfriend.”

“Omg Aaron! I told you to stop calling me Loz! It makes me sound like a cough lolly!” Lauren protested.

“Anyway Taj,” Aaron continued, completely ignoring Lauren, “How come you’re sitting here?”

All of us were looking at one another, seriously worried about how Aaron was acting. It was almost as if he was interrogating Taj! He was definitely being really overprotective. And being a really big dick at the same time.

“Why does it matter? It’s a free country, isn’t it?” Taj responded.

Aaron did not like Taj’s tone. At all. He was completely staring him down, as if he was trying to analyse him or something.

“Yeah I guess. But I mean, you’re like in year 12 yeah? So, why hang around a bunch of girls who are younger than you?” Aaron asked smugly.

Taj took a step forward, “Better than hanging around a bunch of boys… right?”

Aaron’s eyes narrowed, “C’mon dude, what’s the deal? Are you with Amber or not?”


Why the hell should it matter to Aaron if I’m with Taj or not?! And poor Lauren! She looked really upset. None of us had any idea what was going on. I could take one guess, but it was uber farfetched, so I’m not even going to go there.

Why is it any of your business, Aaron?” Taj replied aggressively.

Aaron stepped forward. Seriously, you could cut the tension with a knife! It looked as though Aaron was about to punch him. By now, most of the groups around us were staring at them. The girls and I were so confused, and a bit worried that a fight was going to break out. I never thought that Taj had an aggressive bone in his body… until now. It was a little scary… but kind of hot at the same time. Lol. I know! I guess there’s just something about a guy who stands his ground. But I guess in this situation, it was against someone he didn’t really know, but someone we’ve all known for a very long time. So where is my loyalty meant to lie?

With my friend of 4 years? Or my boyfriend of 6 days?

“Guys, this is stupid,” I said, without thinking, “You’s are getting worked up over nothing.”

They continued to stare at each other… until Taj backed down.

“You’re right,” he said to me, “I don’t even understand why you’re mad at me.”

We both looked to Aaron for an answer. But he said nothing. Instead, he scoffed and walked off.

Seriously. WTF just happened?

Lauren looked frantic. She didn’t know whether or not to go after him or not. I told her to follow him and find out what his problem is. Like, what a jerk! I know that he’s done some douchey things in the past, but this was the most stupidest thing I think he’s ever done! I don’t understand why he was sizing up Taj in the first place, when he’s done absolutely nothing to provoke him. Maybe he was just worried that Taj was going to hit on Lauren? Omg, who knows!

“Well… that was odd,” Taj said as he laughed nervously, “I hope not all my days sitting with you will be like that.”

“Same here,” I nodded, as the girls came to sit with us once more for the remainder of lunch.

I really hope that everything is ok with Lauren and Aaron. She never came back for her backpack at the end of lunch. It just seems really out of character for him. Maybe there’s something going on that none of us know about. I would have asked Lauren tonight, but I’ve been cramming for the stupid Chemistry test that I have tomorrow.

Speaking of tomorrow… guess who’s turn it is to sit with Taj’s group.

Yup. It’s mine.

It can’t be worse that what happened today… can it?

God help me.

Amber A.


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