“You don’t really want to play that,” I say, squirming with embarrassment. “It’s much too girlie for you. Let’s just go with whatever you were originally going to play.”
Jayden’s face is warm with laughter. ”But I’m a huge Beyonce fan,” he insists. “You’ve got to let me channel my inner diva here.”
He breaks into the chorus of “All The Single Ladies,” complete with dance moves. By the time I finish laughing, I’ve forgotten to be embarrassed.
“Seriously, though,” I say. “You’re the Idol here. I’m just the backup. You choose the song.”
“Look!” He hands me some papers. “I went online last night and found this brilliant arrangement for acoustic guitar. It’s got a solo after the second chorus and everything. It’s perfect.”
I look at the title and see that it’s “If I Were A Boy” – the song I originally chose for my audition. My eyes fly up to meet Jayden’s and my breath catches in my throat. His eyes are so dark and intense they seem to be staring into my soul. For a second I let my gaze slide down to his mouth – his beautiful firm-lipped mouth – before blinking and looking away. Focus, Latoya. We’re here to rehearse.
We’re in the Music Department, which is my favourite place in the whole school. It was donated by UbuntuGold. There are four practise rooms, a music library, lots of instruments, and IT facilities. Jayden starts strumming the first few bars of the song, and I hum along to get used to the pace.
”I saw Amanda this afternoon,” Jayden says off-handedly, as we take a water break later. “Must be weird meeting your long-lost sister after all this time.”
By the time I’ve finished coughing and spluttering, I’ve figured out how he knows. ”I told you the surname that day in Grayston Drive, didn’t I?” I say accusingly. “I told you my father’s name was McBurney.”
“You did,” he admits. “But I only remembered that part later. It was seeing you two together that tipped me off. You’re so alike.”
“Me and Amanda?” I gasp. “No, we’re not! You must be crazy. We’re completely different. She’s tall and blonde, and I’m small and dark, and …”
“Ja, but it’s not that. It’s something about your faces and the way you talk. I noticed it immediately. You look like sisters.”
“You wouldn’t say that if you knew her,” I say bitterly.
“Well, I’ll know her better after this weekend, won’t I?”
There’s a sudden silence.
“Why do you say that?” My voice sounds a little higher than normal.
“Oh, didn’t I mention it?” he says casually. “We’re going out together on Saturday night.”
Image: Balthus Van Tassel, CC-BY-NC-SA-2.0
WHAT DO YOU THNK? Latoya can’t bear the thought that Jayden and Amanda are dating. Have you ever had a crush on a guy who was in a relationship with someone else? How did you deal with it?