Days turned into weeks and months and I managed to fall into a routine that even my father would be proud of. I received top marks in everything. Almost everything. The same boy who spent his time staring at me as if I was there for his own amusement surpassed me in nearly every subject, no matter how hard I tried. The only thing he couldn't best me at was physical education. Of course having the advantage of training to become a meister helps. But even that has come more easily than anything else in life.
Until today, not even he could keep up. But he wasn't trying then. Today he tried.
We raced around the track, his paces keeping up with mine. He wore a smile, one that I thought was smug and self congratulatory. Thus far he'd managed to fool me into thinking that I had the upper hand on him, but no; all along it was just fake. I was convinced it was all because he hated me. He still had never said two words to me.
The girl he always spent time with hated me. Nothing new, of course. Being hated by someone who would smile and call you a friend was common place in schools like this. It was understood that certain students were simply above other ones, and that kind of resentment was to be expected. Part of this was my fault, and I understand that. I would never let someone see how hard I worked to claw my way to top marks in all subjects. Perfect people don't let anyone see them try. Trying makes someone human. Being perfect is being more than human, and that is what my family requires. Her feelings must have taken over her reason. It was all too fast to avoid, her foot in my path, me tumbling heels over head onto the track, bringing everything to an abrupt halt. Even the boy stopped. He doubled back, made his way to me and crouched down. I thought for sure that if I looked up, that smug smile would still sit on his face as he feigned concern for me. But no, he was genuinely concerned as he held his hand out for me.
He ended up volunteering to carry me to see the staff nurse, claiming that we'd been running very close and he must have accidentally tripped me. Of course he knew as well as I did that it was a lie. He didn't say much. Kind of a quiet type. But I did get his name, finally.
His name is Ian. I don't really know how to deal with a person like Ian. He isn't fake, and that makes it very difficult to pretend to like him.