Her Flag
Robin Roberts
Break
They’d instant message and he’d type that she’s pretty. With a fourteen-year-old’s passion, he’d write that she was the most beautiful girl in Physical Science. And she’d shoot back coy emoticons. Blushing, smiling, grinning, everything innocent and enticing and always noncommittal.
They’d chat online because she spent her lunch period with her friends. He read or drew, lost in everything that could be. She never told anyone about how they’d chat, about the way he wrote to her. She saw him in the halls, and he knew better than to wave. But that didn’t matter, because that night he’d get the chance to see her words again, and hope is the best pillow to smother common sense.
Then a teacher was talking and he was doodling in the back of class. He’d spent four years learning, always practicing between the equations and grammar lessons he knew he’d never need. Pen held with a samurai’s precision, he drew the same way he dreamed. Every line was unintentional and perfect from practice. He improvised every motion, jumping to patterns he wouldn’t expect. But that day he was lost, lost thinking about her. He drew the curls of hair, the curve of her nose, the round gentleness of her cheeks, and that smile. He drew her with a quarter smile, that flirt of motion. He drew her the way other artists draw angels and sirens.
Another student strode by and spotted his work. Chuckling, this other boy grabbed the picture, shouting for everyone to look. The guys laughed and that stung as he chased the thief, running to get his wrinkled art back. But the girls didn’t say anything, each a little jealous that one of their own could inspire that kind of art.
And she saw it, a flag to her brilliance.
That’s why she said he could ask her out.
Robin Roberts recently graduated with an MA in English from the California State University at Sacramento. Robin enjoys writing because it's a way to explore and disect the world. While Robin's first love is romance, canonical literature is also very important. As an instructor, Robin works to help students see important world issues from a number of different perspectives.