Falling for You-A Joe Walker Love Story

Hey, I'm new to this whole story writing thing and to Quibblo, so I hope whoever reads this enjoys it.
I have a completely unhealthy crush (obsession) on Joe Walker and had an idea in my head so I thought I should do something about it! I'm sure it's slightly predictable, and obviously most of it is untrue but I hope you enjoy it nonetheless.
So just let me know what you guys think and I'll decide whether to continue with it or not. Any constructive criticism / ideas are appreciated. Thanks!

Chapter 2

Best Friends for Life

Still 11 years earlier

Kindergarten, I decided almost immediately, was not nearly as wonderful as my mother had it cracked up to be. In my homeroom class, none of the children even attempted to talk to me, and I did not dare try to muster what little courage I had and ask to join the other little girls in their game of "dress-up." I was more than aware I was unlike other girls my age, preferring Hot Wheels over Barbie dolls, wrestling matches with my older brothers over silly little tea parties, and blue and green over pink and purple any day.

I owned almost nothing in feminine colors, the only exception being my bright pink Minnie Mouse bedspread with long matching curtains, all due to my way-over-the-top "being frilly and girly is wonderful!" mother. Even through my countless temper tantrums, she had insisted, forcefully stating that my room somewhat needed to look like a pretty little five-year-old-girl was living there.

When the school bell rang out, signaling it was finally time for lunch, I was seriously considering running straight out of the place. I probably would have done it, too, if only I wasn't so terrified of being caught and getting into trouble. But I could not stand it any longer. I had to get away.

Knowing no other escape, I silently left my single-file line of classmates headed to the cafeteria and slipped into the next hallway. I wandered around aimlessly for a few minutes, still being extremely careful not to get caught. I was desperately hoping I would be able to find something that could bring even a little comfort into this strange foreign place, but all I saw was white hallway after white hallway, rows and rows of olive green lockers, and the identical gray doorways of the same boring classrooms.

I soon became so overwhelmed with confusion I started to panic, still searching desperately for anything that looked even the slightest bit familiar. With the second round of tears of the day threatening to escape my eyes, I took a chance and hurried down one of the long plain hallways, finally coming upon the one thing that actually seemed familiar and welcoming--the library.

Though I had just learned to read on my own one year ago, when I was four, books had quickly become my main obsession. I devoured book after book, soon running out of children's short stories and diving into kids' novels such as "The Boxcar Children" and "Ramona and Beezus."

My tears had begun to subside as I quietly turned the knob on the tall, wooden door and entered the room. My eyes widened and mouth gaped open as I came upon row after row of books, amazed. I had never seen so many books (meant only for children's pleasure) gathered into one place.

My tiny fingers were lightly dragging along a row of Beverly Clearly novels when I heard the oversized door being flung open, followed by a few panicked whispers.

"Where could she be? Ugh, I can't believe this happened to me again! It's only my second year teaching and this is already my fifth child to lose track of!!"

I immediately recognized the strangely high-pitched voice of my homeroom teacher, Mrs. Lowry. The second I first met her in class I knew I didn't like her. Her purple frilly dress did not suit her squat figure at all, her annoyingly loud hyena laugh drove me insane, and even though I wasn't exactly sure what was wrong with her face, I knew it couldn't be natural because her cheeks and forehead were pulled back so tight it almost made her crazy eyes boggle right out of her head.

Desperately trying not to get caught, especially by her, I ducked out of sight into a small alcove and jumped behind what looked like a barricade made of books stacked up neatly from the floor. I scrunched into a corner, hugged my knees tightly to my chest, and shut my eyes, thinking that doing so would somehow make me invisible.

Mrs. Lowry sauntered through the room a couple minutes longer, and then let out a sigh of exasperation, defeated. She quickly left the room to search for me somewhere else, and I finally gave a sigh of relief.

"Phew... That was close."

"What was close?"

I let out a terrified gasp (knowing not to scream for fear of being found) and my heart seemed to jump right out of my chest. I guess I was so focused on hiding I hadn't even the slightest knowledge that this secret space was already being occupied.

After I somewhat recovered from the initial shock and my mind started coming back into focus, I took a good look at the person patiently sitting just a few feet to my left, legs crossed Indian-style and hands clasped together in his lap.

He was a young boy of my exact same age, with dirty blonde/lightish brown hair, soft, pale skin, bright rosy cheeks, and the most intense, bright blue eyes I had ever seen. They stared into my hazel ones intently, patiently waiting for me to speak.

After several long moments, I finally gathered my words and mumbled shyly, "Oh, I-I'm sorry. I didn't see you." I turned my face, knowing at any moment he would yell for me to leave him and his special hiding place alone.

But he did not say anything at all. He just sat there in silence until I finally turned my head back to meet his gaze.

"You didn't answer my question" he said matter-of-factly. "What was close?"

"Um, well I didn't want my teacher to find me" I explained, still being very timid. This was already the longest conversation I'd had with anyone outside of my family and my old best friend Megan, who had unfortunately moved to California with her family just over the summer.

"Why?" the boy asked curiously, raising his eyebrows slightly and cocking his head to the side.

Why is he not mad at me? I thought. Boys my age are never nice to girls, plus I stole his hiding spot.

When I thought about how to respond to his question, I suddenly remembered why I was even there in the first place, and started tearing up once again.

"Because I hate it here!" I half-yelled. "I hate school, I hate my teacher, none of the other kids will even talk to me, and I miss my mommy!" I was no longer being the shy little girl anymore.

He stared at me intently for a few moments, and then looked away, as if deeply considering what I just said. Finally he turned back to me and stated with the same bluntness as before, "I don't like school either. My teacher is so old she has to have fake teeth that wiggle around when she talks, all the other kids are mean, which is why I came here, and I'm sorry you miss your mommy. I miss mine too."

I stared at him, unblinking. I could not believe everything he had just said. I was so sure no one would understand what I was going through, or how I was feeling.

Suddenly, the boy turned to the side, reaching for something that I could not see. He slowly pulled some kind of object out of a rumpled brown paper bag. It was a sandwich. He carefully tore it in half and held the part in his left hand out to me.

"You like PB & J?" he asked. "Here, take half. My mommy made it special for my first day. She said it would bring me good luck and promised it would even help me make new friends."

I accepted the sandwich and he smiled triumphantly. "Looks like it worked."

I smiled back timidly, for the five seconds of courage fueled by my anger had subsided, once again leaving the shy, sensitive little girl back to her original self.

"What's your name?" the boy asked.

"Katy West. What's yours?"

"Joseph Schwartz Walker" he said proudly, raising his chin in the air slightly.

I giggled. "That's a funny name."

He frowned, lowering the corners of his mouth and creasing his forehead. "No, it's not."

"Yes, it is" I said, giggling even harder. "But that's okay, I like it. It's different."

"Oh." His frown faded slightly, but after only a few seconds it returned. "Well, your name is very plain and kind of boring. I don't like it at all."

I felt the blood rush to my cheeks and I lowered my head in shame.

I knew he doesn't like me. I was right. No one does.

But Joseph wasn't finished speaking. After a slight pause, he continued, saying, "But you do act different. You're not like all the other kids I've met today. Your name's plain but you're different, and I like that."

He then gave me a huge grin, showing his two missing front teeth and deep dimples on either cheek. I knew he was being truthful.

My eyes widened and I looked up at him in amazement, but I soon grinned back widely.

It was like an unspoken vow--this one look at each other and we both knew immediately it meant friendship for life.

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