"Woohoo!! We really got the game in the bag yesterday, huh?" Violet yelled out happily, draping her arm around Emma, who gave the rarely energetic Violet a big smile.
"Yeah! I've never seen you this enthusiastic, Violet! Guess the feeling of victory is still in you huh?"
"You kidding me? We went home with a damn trophy, what's not to like?" Violet kept on cheering while the rest of their teammates either cheered alongside her or tries to calm her down.
But it's not like she doesn't have a good reason. Their recent Volleyball tournament was held yesterday and they were able to bring in the win after their most skilled player, Emma was able to bring the final blow that gave them the victory they desired. This brought a tear to their coach's eye, their countless practices weren't wasted in vain.
Emma was proud of winning, not gonna lie, but the next thing that they are gonna be doing will be testing how she can handle an audience. She never really been in the school newspaper that much, no interviews, no photos needed since the newspaper club is always taking those at any school event.
Though the talk in the school about the Volleyball team's interview is one of the big rumors or news circulating around, there was one in particular that caught Emma's attention, causing her to not focus much on her win yesterday but more on the rumor itself. There was small proof but it was practically airtight.
The newspaper club has at least 5 members, 2 editors, 2 writers, and the one who prints it all out and sends it throughout the school. 5 people seem normal, it was just the right amount for a school club, but the positions each member has, and yet there was one position that was left unaccounted for. The photographer. So it seems that there's a secret 6th member, but it confused students as to why they never revealed themselves.
Some say they are a loner, some say that they're shy, and so on. Though the loner one is plausible enough, as what most people say. Emma was intrigued, whoever this person is. Now Emma isn't entirely interested in the club before, she rarely acknowledges them except their better stories that they post. But as the other students are confused, so is she. Why would the newspaper club keep quiet about their photographer?
The easiest solution would be just to ask them directly, but she didn't wanna barge into their privacy like that, though Emma is the type to surely ask questions directly instead of keeping it in. She's reckless that way. Still, she can't help but be curious! And the interview will begin after school, where her team will be meeting the club at their clubroom.
Emma realized that no-one, and she means no-one, has been inside the clubroom before. Actually, they never decided to do an interview before. But it makes much more sense since the old members of the club disbanded and new ones took over. She has to prepare herself, what if by chance, she would catch a glimpse of the photographer?
But isn't the newspaper club keeping the identity of their 6th member on the dl? If so, what does that mean? It's no use to overthink about it now because the interview will start soon and she's supposed to meet up with her team in the hallway that has the door to the clubroom. Taking a deep breath, she slapped her face with both hands a few times as she lets the anxiety all out.
"Okay... I'm ready!"
Emma navigated her way through the school building, following the instructions of the members gave her and found her team already in the hallway, noticing that she's the only one left who hasn't come yet. Violet spotted her before Emma can even say anything.
"Emma! Where the heck were you? We've been here for 15 minutes now, what gives?" Violet scolded her.
"What are you talking about, Violet? " Ayshe questioned. "We're an hour early."
The team laughed at Violet forgetting the time that easily as she tries to tell them off, storming off towards the newspaper clubroom with her hands into fists. She knocked at the door and tried to keep her embarrassment and anger in, though she thinks she might have messed that up.
"Who is it?" Someone called from inside, the voice seemed to be that of a girl.
"It's Violet from the Volleyball team! We're here for our interview, the rest of us are here."
The door swung open to reveal a girl with blonde hair and green eyes, wearing a beanie with tons of colorful assorted pins decorated around it. She looked at them with a cat-like smile but raised a brow,
"Weird. I could swear Pres told us you guys would be coming at least 40 minutes more." She said, confused.
Emma giggled nervously, "Yeah, we're sorry about that. Let's just say some of us are a little too eager to get this over with." She looked right at Violet, who scoffed as the rest laughed.
The girl laughed alongside them, "Haha! Well, since you guys are here, why don't you all come in? " She offered, opening the door for them, gesturing to them to come inside.
One by one, each member walks in, with Emma trying to keepp calm as she walks inside. The room was really big, to put it simply, lots of papers stacked on a lot of spaces and newspapers being littered across the room, with one of the club members picking them all up. He looked up and was taken aback to see that the Volleyball team arrived early.
"Woah! Is it just me, or did they come here too early?" The boy exclaimed, resuming back to picking up the newspapers but still kept his eyes on them.
"Seems like it, Nigel! They came here early, " Gillian looked back at them. "You guys can sit on the couches over there, we'll start according to schedule."
Nodding their heads, they all sat down on the couches, while Emma and Ayshe decided to sit on the armrests of the couch. As they patiently waited, some pulled out their phones and others took out a book from their bags. Emma didn't do anything to keep herself busy, and she isn't feeling okay since she's a freedom lover, being stuck in one room was killing her inside.
The room was a mess, so much paper sprinkled across the floor, the pinboard covered with tons of ideas for other stories to write about, and desks with computers on top. Two other members are behind two desks, typing away, seemingly writing something that is possibly the article they are working on.
One is a girl with green hair in a bob haircut, wearing the biggest glasses Emma has seen in her life, the other is a boy with fancy-looking red hair and a long nose. Both of them looked focused on whatever they're writing on the computers, barely noticing the ones they're supposed to interview are already there.
Emma swore she shivered a little, taking note that the newspaper club was nothing like she had expected. She thought that they are fun and likes to write the next big story they can come across, but they take their job seriously. It honestly scared Emma of how earnest they are when it comes to this stuff.
She didn't wanna sit down for the next 30 minutes so Emma stood up and decided to take a look around the clubroom, while also avoiding the paper scattered on the floor. She mostly took many glances and looks at the photos pinned on the walls or on the pinboard or the ones on the tables.
All look so beautiful, perfectly shot at the perfect spot, it truly is amazing photography skills right there. It really drew Emma to them all now that she walked up to the table and reached out her hand to hold it.
Emma turned around to see Gillian behind her, smiling her famous cat smile, moving over next to Emma. "Photographed best by our photographer. "
"Um, if you don't mind me asking, who is your photographer? I've heard rumors but I've never seen them before."
Emma might have imagined it but Gillian looked a little hesitant and nervous about answering, "L-Lets just say he isn't an open person." Was all she can say before walking away, helping Nigel with the papers.
This confused Emma, but from the looks of it Gillian might have slipped up saying that. Maybe she wasn't supposed to. Though this distracted Emma for a moment, her eyes went back to the table and spotted something. Even from the pile of photos, she managed to catch a glimpse of a certain one through them all.
Curious, she rummaged through the countless photos and took out the right one, her eyes widened with shock as her jaw dropped from the mere sight of it. She did not expect to see that at all. Emma took a quick peek at Gillian, who is still helping Nigel cleaning up the mess. She looked over at her teammates who seem busy with other things and a couple who fell asleep in boredom.
Emma would've calmed down,
If she didn't notice that one of them is gone from the couch.
"What do you have there?"
Emma nearly jumped in surprise, but the person covered Emma's mouth and shushed her. Letting go, Emma looked at her dumbfounded. "Ayshe..."
"I don't want them to notice what you're doing, whatever you are up to. What are you doing anyway?" Ayshe asked curiously.
Before answering, Emma took a look around and turned back to Ayshe. "I can't explain everything to you, but can you keep this between us?"
Ayshe glanced at the photo Emma held, her eyes grew wide seeing what was on it. Without a second thought, she nodded and promised not to tell a soul. Emma thanks her as Ayshe walked back to the couch, and when Violet asked her what she's been up to, thankfully, she didn't say anything that leads back to Emma.
Now that Ayshe is out of the way, Emma swiftly shoved the photo into her pocket and dashed through the room and sat back on the armrest, pretending like she didn't find anything interesting. Just a few minutes sitting down, someone walks inside carrying a ton of paper, another person following behind.
"Hey, Nat. Can you clear your schedule this weekend-" He stopped at his tracks when he saw the Volleyball team already there, causing him to drop the papers in his hands.
Emma instinctively tried to sprint over there and catch it despite being far away. The person from behind caught it midair and gave it back to the male student.
"Here." He says in a monotone voice. Emma couldn't make out what he said because his hoodie was drooped over his head, hiding his face entirely, the only thing Emma can identify him in a glance is the boy's black hair.
The boy with white hair chuckled in embarrassment, "Haha, sorry about that. I didn't expect you guys to come in early, " He said as he thanks the hooded boy, taking the papers and placed it on his desk. "I'm Norman, by the way, it's very nice to meet you all."
Norman... Emma recognized that name, there was a thought of uncertainty, she could have sworn she heard of him elsewhere other than school, where has she heard that name before. Her eyes widened in realization. "Norman! You're from my science class!" She said out loud, unintentionally disturbing Gilda and Nat's concentration.
"Um, do you mind...?" Nat glared at Emma.
Norman snickers at Emma's enthusiasm, "You're quite the energetic one, Emma, is it? Anyway, I'll be the one interviewing you guys, I'm gonna need to prepare a few things first." He said.
"We can wait," Ayshe replied. "We are here for that interview after all."
"Great! Now, if you would all excuse me, I have some work to do." Instead of heading over to his desk, he turns towards the hooded boy, leaning over to where the ear is.
Emma figured that Norman didn't want anyone to know what he wants to say, but the hooded boy caught her eye. He intrigued her, it was like he's surrounded by this dark and gloomy aura, making it clear that he doesn't like company. The boy nodded and began digging around in his bag, grabbing something that shocked Emma.
It was pretty old though, an older model and one she isn't able to immediately recognize, but she's seen it before. Not the model of the camera of something like that of the sorts, but more like she's seen it before when she's younger. It even has the same crack at the flashbulb. It was too overly familiar that she ended up staring at it.
The boy looked over at Emma, with her turning her head away hastily, avoiding eye contact as she tried her best to not act interested. That boy, he must be the photographer she's so curious about, it's really him. At least those were Emma's assumptions, she knows she can't already say that the boy in front of her is the photographer just because he's holding a camera.
"Hey, Norman. I'm heading home early to finish editing the photos." The boy said blankly, but Norman smiled at him innocently.
"Sure. Just make sure you don't end up distracted again."
With that, he walked out of the room with his camera hung around his neck. Emma can't let him get away now, she's already come too far to lose sight of him. Now that she thinks about it, what's the big deal?
She finally got to see him, the 6th member of the Newspaper Club was literally in front of her. Yes, he didn't show his face because of his hoodie, but hearing his voice for the first time is enough for Emma to be satisfied. She should be... But, the feeling of uncertainty still lingers within her, like she wants to know more.
Is it because she wants to see his face? What kind of person he is? Just what is it she wants to gain from knowing him???
If it's none of that... Then what?
Emma told up from her seat, walking over to the door as she holds the doorknob. Violet raised her brow in confusion. "Where are you going, Emma?"
"Bathroom. I'll be back, see ya!" She rushed out of the room quickly, Violet didn't mind and resumed back to waiting.
This time, for sure, she will meet him! She just has to! Emma doesn't have a solid reason why, no logic to go off of, she had absolutely no idea why she wants to chase after this guy. Emma slowly starts to realize... That she isn't following the facts at all, she isn't thinking straight about it. She chose to do this because it's her hunch.
Judging from his previous statement, he must be outside, heading home for the day. Emma pushed through the exits and looks around, trying to catch a glimpse of the boy's black hair or maybe that hoodie he was wearing. Nothing. Emma went up to the closest student and asked if he has seen a boy wearing a black hoodie, luckily, the student has and pointed at the direction of the where he has last seen the boy.
Emma thanked him as she sprints away, while also asking for tips on the way. But she notices it, slowly almost no-one saw him come around the area, making Emma more tired. She was frustrated with herself, why can't she make any sense with herself? Why is she like this?
She probably looks like a fool, running around town looking for a boy she was curious of, what a stupid reason to go on about. Emma knew that it was no use anymore. Though she has this urge to keep on looking, it's pointless. So she decided to just head back to the school for the interview, which will start in ten minutes. Emma bets she can make it there in only 5 if she runs.
Before she can even start running, someone grabbed her by the shoulder, causing her to yelp in surprise as she turns around. It's him!
"Yo, " He said. "Heard from people that a redhead's been looking for me."
She couldn't believe it, he's actually here! Is this some sort of miracle, or is the world torturing her by making it almost impossible to find the one person she was looking for? Wow, the world is a jerk.
"Uh, yes! I'm really sorry for... Um, I guess, being too curious?"
The boy chuckled, "Crazy that you're the one who's apologizing, though to be fair, I have been trying to hide from you this whole time."
Emma looked at him, confused. "What? Why me?"
A sigh escaped his mouth as he took a couple of pictures from inside his pocket, looking at them for a short moment before handing them over to Emma. She was taken aback, not knowing why he was giving her a couple of photographs for. But she didn't turn him away, she took the photos and looked at them.
"H-huh??" Emma stuttered, shocked at the contents of the photo. She is completely speechless.
"I'm creepy, huh?" He said, rubbing the back of his head in embarrassment.
"U-uh! I mean..! I'm just confused... Why take photos of me?"
"I guess...." Before continuing, he lifts his hoodie off of his head, finally revealing his face to Emma. "You just looked so bright not take a picture of. "
Those dark green eyes of his, they were staring deeply into Emma's, as she began to feel shivers on her spine. That face, that look he's giving her, it all looks so familiar. Gulping, she reaches out her hand at him, with a big smile on her face.
"I'm Emma! What's your name?"
He was caught off guard by her sudden change of mood, causing him to blush a little, but maybe, that's what attracted him to her in the first place. "The name's Ray. It's nice to meet you, Emma."
Then both of them thought at the same time,
"I think I've heard of that name before..."