“Marigold’s Boyfriend” Part 2

Marigold’s Boyfriend is a short story written by The Round Up staff member, Elijah Nix. Due to its length, the first half of the story was published on April 11, 2022. This is the second and final part of the short story. 

“I guess if I had to pick,” I said, “I’d say The Giver.” 

“I thought that was a book?” 

She knows The Giver! 

“Yeah, it’s a book too, but they made a movie of it a while back.” 

“Oh, that’s cool.” 

“Yeah, it’s got Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep. It’s pretty good.” 

“I mean, I don’t know who those are, but I had to read the book in middle school.” 

She doesn’t know Jeff Bridges? Or Meryl Streep? That’s not a big deal! I’m sure she would love it if she saw it. We’ll watch it together one of these days. 

“Yeah, me too.” 

“Hmm…,” she thought, “Well… I did see this movie a while back that I thought was pretty good. It was called Words in the Bathroom Walls. Honestly, it’s pretty deep. It’s about this kid who has this mental disorder–” 

Technically, it’s Words on the Bathroom Walls, and the kid has Schizophrenia… and it’s not deep… but she said she hasn’t seen a lot of movies, so I’m sure if– 

“–and he sees people who aren’t there who kinda affect his dating life,” she continued. 

“Yeah, I saw that one. With Devon Bostick?” 

He’s the only reason I watched it. 

She looked confused. 

“He’s the guy who plays the frat college guy in the guy’s head,” I clarified. 

“Ooh… yeah, sorry, I really don’t watch a lot of movies. That’s cool that you’ve seen it though. What did you think?” 

How do I put this… 

“I thought it was a really interesting concept.” 

“Yeah, definitely.” 

You are so beautiful. 

The professor interrupted the conversations around the room and voices slowly dwindled, “Ok… ok, is there a partner group that wants to go first?” 

Partner. 

Hands rose around the room and people began introducing their partners one by one around the room. A lot of people liked superhero movies and Star Wars and Disney. There were some deep cuts too like Shawshank Redemption and Slumdog Millionaire. 

Eventually our turn came. Marigold motioned that I go first. I stood up. 

“This is Marigold,” I said, presenting a princess to a room of paupers, “and if she had to pick, she’d say her favorite movie is Words on the Bathroom Walls.” 

“Oo, I haven’t heard of that one,” the professor said, “but it sounds interesting.” 

I nodded with pride (not sure why) and sat back down. Then, Marigold rose. 

“Hi, everyone,” She began, “This is… er–” 

“Winston,” I whispered. 

“Winston,” she continued, “and his favorite movie is The Giver.” 

“Oo,” the professor said, “like the book?” 

“Yeah.” 

“Well, I’ve read the book, but I haven’t seen the movie. Might have to check it out!” 

We nodded, and Marigold sat back down. 

There were a few more pairs after us, and after the icebreaker had completed, everyone went back to their seats. For a moment, I considered staying where I was, but I figured that wouldn’t be playing my cards right. 

The rest of class period consisted mostly of more syllabus and materials we would need and the online course modules. No real content yet. 

“Alright, that’s all for today,” the professor said, “Be sure to ready yourself for next week–” blah blah blah. 

Marigold left the room slightly before me, and I found that she was going the same direction I was heading. I felt a sense of hope that she would turn around, put her hands on my head and kiss me. I didn’t expect this, nor should I have, but I wanted it to happen. 

I just have to wait. Patience is a virtue. Today was day 1. 

I continued to trail behind her as she walked out of the building–mask off, sunglasses on. There was more foot traffic outside now. She was walking towards–and eventually past–the bike rack where my bike was, so I followed behind her until I reached it. I waited to unlock my bike until I couldn’t see her anymore. 

What would be a good movie for us to watch first… hm… 

She was about 30 feet away from me now, on a sidewalk. She looked left… then right… then left again. She seemed to be looking for someone. Then, her body language revealed that she finally caught sight of them, although, I couldn’t tell who it was until she embraced them. 

I soon realized the person to be a young man. Slightly taller, slightly leaner, and slightly more attractive than me. Her lips met his for a brief moment before the two continued walking with their hands clasped together. 

I unlocked my bike, wheeled it out of the rack, and mounted it. 

 

That’s ok. 

I didn’t really like her that much anyway.

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