inspired by this flawless short film
Arthur’s first day is not going well. He had to get up and introduce himself in front of the class and he got laughed at, just like all new kids always do. It’s too late in the year to join the football team, and so all he has to look forward to is going home to an empty house now, since with this new important job he’ll see his father even less, which he didn’t think was possible.
He’s sulking a little bit, gathering up his things when a very nice, pretty girl turns around. ”D’you want to walk with us? We’re just down the street,” she asks with an easy smile. The boy next to her is dark-haired, with piercing blue-green eyes that cannot see, and he is holding her arm. Arthur knows it’s because he’s blind, but he still wonders if they are together.
"I—er, yeah," Arthur says, practically stumbling over his own feet at the opportunity. He’s not going to turn down an invitation to make friends. The boy hears his clumsy shuffle and laughs, not unkindly, and Arthur smiles. It feels good.
They make friendly conversation along the way. He learns the boy’s name is Merlin and the girl’s name is Gwen, and they’ve been best friends since primary school. Gwen assures him that his introduction didn’t go that badly, and that the school’s football team is shit—“They’ll be begging to have you next year.”
"Thanks," Arthur says, genuinely meaning it, as they come to a stop. Merlin has been quiet for much of it, though he smiles and laughs along with the conversation, and Arthur wonders about him. He’s just… intriguing.
"This is me," Merlin says, giving Gwen the key to unlock the gate. "I’ll see you later Arthur, yeah?" he asks, offering his hand.
Arthur takes his hand (it is warm) and gives it a shake. ”Of course, yeah. Nice to meet you.”
"You too," Merlin answers as he steps inside, with a hint of a lopsided smile. Arthur’s grin widens.
Maybe the first day wasn’t such a waste after all.