52. A Bunch of Dirty Clothes

As Alex’s alarm buzzed through the air, she switched it off. She stretched her arms and back, rolling to her side. She took a deep breath to get some strength and get up. Rubbing her eyes, she stood up and headed straight to the bathroom for her morning rituals.

When she was done, she towel-dried her hair and got dressed. Grabbing her backpack and checking the timestamp on her lockscreen, she was ready to step out of the bedroom.

She stopped mid-step.

Alex reached for her phone and checked the time again.

It said that it was Sunday.

She closed her eyes and took a deep breath. Needless to say, she dumped her backpack on the floor and flopped onto the bed, going back to sleep.

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Alex wasn’t sure what time it was but judging by how tired she felt, it was probably still too early.
Whoever the voice that started to disturb her sleep clearly had the wrong sense of time.

“Alex… Aleeexxx… Alex, wake up” Changing to a higher pitch, it continued to say, “You can stop dreaming about me because I’m here. So wake up. We got work to dooo. You’re not just my owner… but you’re my primary caregiver!”

“Not now, Garfield” Alex mumbled in her sleep.

She got a chuckle as a response, “I’m amazed you know that.”

Alex felt a dip near her head. She opened her eyes into slits just to check if it was his butt. Thankfully, it wasn’t—just his head on his arms on her pillow. She closed her eyes again, “Go away, Logan.”

“Now, is that any way to treat your friend?”

“I’m not sure but I mean it.”

Logan started poking her cheek, “Wake up already.”

She didn’t budge.

“It’s noon” Logan matched each syllable with a poke.

“It is not.”

“Uh, yes, it is.”

“No, it’s not.”

She heard him sigh. Alex smiled internally, thinking Logan gave up, but it came as no surprise that she turned out to be wrong, “Why are you sleeping fully dressed? Did you happen to forget that school was out today?”

Alex wrinkled her nose, “Maybe?”

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Logan barked out a laugh, “That’s hilarious. Why didn’t we talk sooner?”

“You wouldn’t even be within 100 meters from this house if that happened.”

“Why?” He asked, “You did invite me that time for our project, remember?”

“Unless necessary and under supervision. Wait a second—” Heart thumping in her chest, Alex sat up and stared wide-eyed at Logan near her bed, “How did you get in here?!”

He gave her a cheeky grin, not even flinching at the tone of her voice, “Since you realized it, I can assume your brain is functioning and you’re finally awake?”

Alex pulled her blanket closer to her chest, scooting away from him, “I could have—could have been—”

Logan scrunched his eyebrows, “Could have been what?”

“Could have been—indecent!” Alex wanted to reel the words back in. Her mouth clamped shut after they came out. She wished she could turn invisible. It felt really weird to say to a guy.

Logan snorted at that, “Oh, please. I didn’t see anything. Frankly, I don’t think there’s anything to see—”

If anything else came after that, Alex didn’t hear it. The pillow she threw landed on his face.

“What are you doing in my house? In my room? There’s no one else in here except me. Did you just trespass?”

He snorted again and lied on the floor, his hands behind his head and his legs bent, one ankle resting on the other leg’s knee. Alex had to lean over to see him.

“Of course not, how uncivilized do you think I am? No, I did the classic thing” Logan paused for suspense, “I rang the doorbell. Nobody answered. Checked under the mat and hey! No key. Checked under the pot and would you look at that? Found a key, opened the door and here I am.”

His grin told her how proud he felt at this accomplishment.

Alex rolled her eyes, “Why didn’t you just call my cell?”

The mischief in Logan’s eyes came back, “Where’s the fun in that?”

“Logan!”

He did an eye roll, “I would have if I didn’t find a key, okay?”

“Why are you here again?” She demanded, “Just because you know my secret doesn’t mean you can always come here whenever you’re bored on a weekend.”

“I know that but I had an idea.”

Alex raised an eyebrow skeptically, “And that is?”

His lips broke into a wide smile. It did nothing to ease her suspicion, “Let’s go on a date.”

Alex blinked.

Twice.

When his words clicked in her brain, she said, “A date?! What exactly did you want to accomplish with this idea?”

Alex had long given up at figuring out how Logan’s brain worked. She had concluded it was always better to just ask him—in case, he wanted to trick her into something.

Logan stood up from the floor and sat beside her, wrapping an arm around her shoulders, “I thought quality time together would prove that from now on, I have nothing but good intentions for our re—friendship. That and because I missed out on the party so I think it would be a good way to make it up to you.”

Alex shrugged off his arm and leaned away from him. The memories of the party wasn’t something she wished to talk about yet… plus the proximity made her uncomfortable—more so, after they did the English presentation. That was enough closeness to last her a lifetime. Thus, she did her best to keep at least a distance of 40 centimeters.

And so, she switched topics to distract him, “Why can’t you spend your weekends with your family?”

He sighed, a sign that her tactic didn’t go unnoticed. Yet, he went along with it, “If you really wanna know, you can always come over to my place. Unlike a certain someone, I am a very good host.”

Logan instantly found a pillow to his face again.

“So about that date?” He appeared really hopeful once the pillow left his face. He made it look like turning him down seemed like stealing a kid’s ice cream.

When Alex didn’t say anything, imaginary ears drooped at the sides of Logan’s face.

“Are you…” Alex felt a half smile pull the corner of her mouth, “Are you trying to pull a cute puppy dog pout?”

Logan whimpered in response. It only made her chuckle. Alex kept the sight in her memory, “Well, it’s not cute.”

He mockingly glared at her, “Meanie.”

Alex laughed which only made him pout again. This made her laugh harder. Logan continued to sulk. Then, she said, “Anyway, I can’t go anywhere. I have a basket full of laundry waiting for me.”

Alex thought he would leave, accepting defeat—except he was Logan. The last thing he would ever do was leave her alone.

His face lit up instead, “That works too. I’ll help.”

AlexI held her hands up as if to stop him from moving, “No…!”

“What?”

“Um” Alex pressed her lips together, unsure of what to say.

He glared at her, “You don’t think I can wash a little laundry?”

“What? Of course not” she snorted, “Why would you say that?”

“Uh-huh. Right. If you think you can get rid of me because of a bunch of dirty clothes, you’re wrong.”

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