Surviving Regret - Megan Smith


Tick, tock, tick, tock.

I look over at the clock on the wall—three minutes have passed since the last time I looked at it. I glance around the classroom and notice no one else is really paying attention to Mrs. Bishop, our Calculus teacher, as she goes on and on about transcendental functions.

Who the hell is ever going to use this in the real world?

This is the last class before the big pep rally for the football championship game that is being held in Portland. We are set to play Lake Oswego High School and we are the favorite to win this game. There is so much excitement pumping in the air that no one is concentrating on much of anything. Everywhere you look everyone is dressed in our school colors to support our players.

I glance back over to the clock again, five minutes have passed, though it feels like an eternity. Groaning, I sit in my chair and blow a piece of hair out of my face.

I sigh and Landon Hayes, my boyfriend, chuckles and raises an eyebrow at me, “One might think you were playing in the game tomorrow, babe.”

I turn my head smiling, “I feel like I am.” Landon’s eyes are an obsession of mine. All he needs to do is give me a look and I melt into a puddle. I shouldn’t because God knows that Landon uses those piercing blue eyes on every girl on this Earth to get what he wants. If it’s not his eyes, it’s his delicious body. He never has a shirt on. An eighteen-year-old should not have a body like Landon does. All the hours that he spends in the gym shows, he’s not huge but he’s got defined muscle in all the right places, which gives him good reason to walk around without a shirt on.

Landon reaches into his pocket and pulls out a folded piece of paper. He looks up to make sure the teacher has her back toward us before slipping it into my hand. Yeah, he could have texted me but the chance of getting caught is greater and I secretly love the little notes. They’ve been our thing for years. I stare into his penetrating eyes wondering how I got so lucky with a boy like Landon. He’s everything I’ve ever dreamed of, and then some.

With a sly smile, I unfold the small piece of green paper then glance up to make sure I’m not going to get caught reading it. When I know I’m in the clear, I look down at the note that simply says, “I love you.”

Grateful now that I touched up my lipstick before class I bring the piece of paper to my lips and kiss it. Landon isn’t watching me, he’s looking straight ahead acting like every once in while he isn’t stealing glances my way. I fold the note back up then place it in his lap leaving my hand on his thigh for a few extra seconds. He throws me a look, one I know well. The one that tells me he is thinking of us, alone, locked behind a closed door and stripped bare.

This has become a tradition between us this year. He slips me the piece of paper, I kiss it and then he tucks it into his football pants right before game time. Canby High School is undefeated so far this year, Landon says it’s because of our notes. It’s his lucky charm.

Landon shifts his body toward mine but not enough to cause anyone to look his way but enough for me to know that I’m affecting him.

“Don’t start what you can’t finish, Macy.” His breathing getting faster. “I’ve warned you before.”

I squirm in my seat remembering just last week when I pushed him too far in gym class.

We were playing baseball out on the back field behind the high school and I was up to bat. I knew Landon was watching me, he always does. He gave me a few pointers on how to hit the ball that Mr. McCoy was throwing. I listened but I also didn’t like being told what to do. I had a few pointers of my own I was about to show him. Right before I was up to bat I rolled the waist of my shorts up just a little higher than I normally would have worn them before grabbing a helmet and bat. When I walked up I got into position and heard Landon yell, “Come on, Macy, I