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Head Over Heels
an SAT/ACT vocabulary novel
  

April 9: Good Friday

During my fifteen-minute break at work today, I went out to my car, where I knew a bag of delicious spicy nacho Doritos were waiting for me. While unlocking the door, I saw a shock of color that was definitively not Doritos. A huge bouquet of flowers was sitting in the shotgun seat. I grabbed for them and read the card, which said, simply, I miss you. No signature. A thought flashed through my brain, causing my heart to thump in my chest. Are they from Luke? Of course, I was immediately ashamed at the stupidity of it. They could only be from Jeremy, because only he knew the code to my car’s manual lock. But somehow, having had the thought, I couldn’t help but feel a little disappointed now that they weren’t from Luke. Stupid, I know.

When I got back to Viewpoint, my little dilemma was still bothering me. I decided to get Agatha’s opinion.

“So a friend of mine got this gift from a guy, right?” I said. “Let’s say, a beautiful bouquet of flowers, for the sake of convenience. And the flowers weren’t signed or anything, and this friend imagined—”

“You got flowers?” Agatha asked. “Who got you flowers?”

“I didn’t say me! I said a friend.”

“Oh don’t pull that,” she said pejoratively. “Whenever anyone says this friend this and this friend that, they’re doing a cover-up for themselves.” It had taken me a while to get used to Agatha’s acerbic wit, but I had started to really dig it. “So who’re they from?” she asked.

“Jeremy,” I admitted.

“Damn! You preppy, goody-two-shoe girls get all the good stuff. The guys who like me buy me bags of incense that stink up my locker . . . So, why’d he give you flowers? I thought you two broke up.”

“We did.”

“Aha. Restart flowers.”

“What’s that?”

“Well did you break up break up, or like, take-a-break break up?”

“I don’t know . . .”

“Is it possible that he construed your break up as temporary? How was it phrased?”

“Well, now that I think about it, we agreed to take a break. But it felt pretty permanent to me.”

“Right. But be careful. What feels permanent to you may be a strategic ploy on his part. He may be thinking: I’ll take a few weeks off, date some other girls, and then get restart flowers and go back to my safety net. When did you break up again?”

“Right before spring break,” I said.

“Need I say more?”

“Hmm. Interesting.”

“But what was it that you were going to say? That whole scenario about your friend getting flowers?”

“Forget it.”

“Can’t do it. Too late. You’ve brought it up, so now you’ll have to follow through, or face the wrath of Agatha and be mercilessly throttled within inches of your life.”

“Sheesh.”

“Sorry. That’s just the way it goes.”

“I was just gonna say that when I first saw the flowers, for like a split second, I kinda sorta hoped that they were from someone else.”

“Oh,” she said. “Who?”

“I’d rather not tell. But is that a bad thing?”

“As far as your boyfriend goes, I’d say yeah. It’s bad. Restart flowers are like jumper cables. If you get them, and you don’t instantly know that that’s what you’ve been waiting for, then it’s pretty much over. Were you pining for him over break?”

Moderately,” I said. “Not too much.”

“Yeah. Time to suck it up and break up for good.”

“But they’re such gorgeous flowers.”

“If you let it drag on, he’ll hate you for life.”

“Yeah. You’re probably right. But what about, you know, the other guy?”

“You mean Luke?” she asked.

I just smiled.

“Well, if you’re wishing that the flowers were from him, then yes, that is significant.”

“How significant?” I asked.

“Quite,” she said. “And now, if you’ll excuse me, the gentleman behind you would like to purchase a book.”

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