A decorative bowl boasted brightly coloured oranges, apples and bananas. That gave me pause. Even I knew bananas shouldn’t touch the other fruit but I wasn’t going to say anything. I wasn’t stupid.
“Do you want something to drink? Diet coke? Lemonade?” Alisa called from the other room.
“Lemonade please! Thanks!”
I cringed at myself. That wasn’t nonchalant. Think! What would a confident boy do?
I shrugged off my school bag and flung it onto the smooth, creamy leather sofa. That was better but she hadn’t seen that. I grabbed a vibrant green apple and looked again at the grand and spacious room.
A large, tan animal skin rug dominated the centre whilst the periphery was inhabited by fancy armchairs and looming bookcases.
They even had a real fireplace.
My eyes paused warily on a large shotgun resting above the hearth. Alisa’s father was a cop. What would he think of me being here with his daughter?
“It’s not real.”
I shrugged as if I saw guns all the time. I didn’t believe her. It looked real to me and it wasn’t displayed in an awkward, hard to reach place either.
Alisa was giving me a curious look so I shot her my most disarming smile. She was still gazing at me with those large, mysterious dark eyes and I bravely held that gaze as I bit into the apple.
It was strange, rough and spongy. My heart stopped. Oh God no. It wasn’t real. The apple wasn’t real.
Desperate ideas swarmed my mind. Do I drop the apple and run? Do I try to actually eat it? None of which appealed.
Alisa’s puzzled expression twitched into one of amusement and in one moment that I will never forget we burst into wild, uncontrollable laughter.
(c) Rachel Smith