Posted Two Minutes Ago

Submitted into Contest #144 in response to: Write a story that centres around an Instagram post.... view prompt

66 comments

Teens & Young Adult High School Fiction

Jason King liked my Instagram post. The one I posted two minutes ago. This can mean one of two things.

He’s casually scrolling through the app. 

Possible. 

Or he turned on the notification to tell him when I post something. 

Seems unlikely.

But!

Jason asked me to borrow a pencil to take a math final we had yesterday. He didn’t ask Amber Prescott or Courtney Hall for a pencil. Both are more popular and sat closer to him in math class. 

Does this mean something? 

I study the picture in question. It’s one of my favorites. My friend, Tyler, had snapped this shot of me at lunch. My long brown hair was uncharacteristically shiny. I was sipping an iced coffee, my legs crossed to show off my thrifted Doc Martens. 

Omg. 

Jason is in this lunch hour too! Is this a sign? Did he like my photo as code? Like, “we share the same lunch hour, do you wanna sit by me and/or make out sometime?” Is that what him liking this picture meant? 

Am I overthinking this?

Highly probable. 

Sitting on my bed speculating isn’t productive. 

I need advice. 

Racing to our lanai, I rush past my mom, not bothering to answer her question about what I wanted for dinner. 

Can’t she tell I’m in the middle of a crisis?

With my phone to my ear, I pace around our pool deck, knowing Tyler will pick up. 

“Hey, I was just about to call you…” Tyler says into my ear. 

“I’m sorry to cut you off, but listen,” I pause for dramatic effect, “Jason King just liked my Instagram post!” 

“Wait, which one is Jason?” Tyler asked after a moment. 

This is not an appropriate reaction.  

“Tyler! Catch up! He’s in our lunch hour, yesterday he asked to borrow my pencil, he’s tall, gorgeous,” Tyler interrupts me. 

“Oh, yep, all you had to do was say that dreadful pencil story. You made me listen to what he meant by it for hours,” Tyler snickered. “So, Jason liked your Insta post, what should we do…” I can hear the smile in his voice. Now that he’s caught up, we are on the same page. 

“Should I like one of his?” I ask. 

“No! Too desperate. Or it could turn into one of those things where you both just like each other’s stuff online and then in real life it’s awkward.”

“Like what happened with Hector?” I put a hand over my mouth as soon as I say the words. The exact situation happened with Tyler and the guy he liked. Whenever they pass each other in the hall they pretend like the other doesn’t exist. But they heart every post the other uploads. It happened recently, and I hope Tyler doesn’t mind me bringing it up. 

“Exactly. I call Hector my Insta boyfriend. That’s all he can ever be,” Tyler sighs dramatically. “Anyway, I think you should just message him. Say something simple. Since you just had a final together you could ask him how he thinks he did. He already made the first move. Now it’s your turn,” Tyler tells me reasonably. 

I stopped pacing. Tyler has a point, I should talk to him. 

But here’s the thing, having crushes on boys is fun. I love the way my stomach dips when the boy I like looks at me. 

Actually talking to a boy, though? 

That’s an entirely different thing. 

What if Jason doesn’t live up to the version of him that I already have of him in my head?  

Boys never do. 

I can’t just do nothing. 

“Gwen…” Tyler can tell I’m overthinking this. “Come on, if you like Jason talk to him. Talk to him like he’s just a regular person. It won’t be awkward if he’s the right guy.” 

“What if it is awkward?” I asked my best friend. 

“Then you and I can go to the mall and look at clothes we can’t afford to buy and talk about how we only need each other,” Tyler says. 

“Thanks, Ty,” I reply. 

I put my phone on speaker and pull up the picture Jason liked. 

This Gwen looks confident. Her eyes are carefree. She wouldn’t obsess over some guy liking her picture. 

She’s the girl I wish I was. 

Maybe I can be her… 

“You still there?” Tyler says into my ear. 

“Yeah sorry. Alright, I think I’m going to do it,” I click on Jason's profile. My thumb hovers over the message square. 

“Really? Go, Gwen!” The surprise in his voice confirms what I already know. 

Tyler didn’t actually think I’d do it. 

Neither did I.

Maybe that’s exactly why I need to. 

I tap the message button. 

O. M. G. 

“Tyler!” I scream into the phone. I’m being louder than necessary, my next-door neighbor probably thinks I’m being murdered. 

“What? What happened?” 

“Jason King is typing me a message!” I yell. It’s hard to believe that the three little dots are real. I’m not imagining things though.

Jason is messaging me!

“You have to read exactly what it says when he messages it!” Tyler tells me, matching my excitement. 

“Of course.”

I hold my breath. The world stops spinning as I wait for what this boy has to say. 

Maybe I can finally have my first boyfriend…

My heart stops beating. 

“Tyler! He sent it!” I close my eyes and try to calm my breathing. 

“What did he say?” Tyler asks impatiently. 

“Hey, Gwen!” I stop reading his message. “He used an exclamation point! Is that good?” 

“Very good,” Tyler encourages. 

“I like your shoes in your new photo,” I read from the next line. Tyler cuts me off. 

“He complimented you! That’s a good sign!” 

I read on. 

“Anyway, I’ve noticed you hanging out with Tyler Armstrong,” I pause in confusion. 

“Jason did not say that, you’re messing with me,” the Tyler my crush is talking about says through my phone. I read the rest of Jason's message silently. 

This cannot be happening. 

“Gwen? Come on, you’re pranking me,” Tyler says in a strained voice. I read my best friend the rest of Jason's message in an emotionless voice. 

“I was wondering if you could tell me if he’s into guys. I’m sorry if that question seems wrong or intrusive. It’s just always awkward asking someone that,” I finish. 

Tyler and I both sat in silence. 

Neither sure what to say next.

May 03, 2022 15:10

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66 comments

Thom Brodkin
14:27 May 11, 2022

It’s a Shakespearean tragedy played out in the halls of high school. No winners. Nice job.

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15:34 May 11, 2022

Thank you! The story does end in a precarious situation, doesn't it?

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Susan Sidell
13:31 May 13, 2022

What a great job capturing the awkwardness of romance. These feelings are across the human experience, a reader if any age can identify with your main character.

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13:49 May 13, 2022

Thank you so much! Even close to being thirty I found myself acting like this sometimes!

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Noelle C
00:59 May 13, 2022

Wow that ending

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01:30 May 13, 2022

Thank you!

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Juliet Love
22:55 May 15, 2022

I hate when that happens

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17:53 May 22, 2022

Right? Haha, an average Monday of sorts

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Nandini Panchal
02:57 May 15, 2022

Great twist in the end! There's always a bit of awkwardness in these matters😂😂

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08:23 May 15, 2022

Thank you so much! Yes i agree haha!

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Anissa Waterman
09:03 May 14, 2022

Great story. I love the feelings your characters invoke just with the dialogue between the characters. Good job!

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18:01 May 14, 2022

Thank you so much!

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Christina Hicks
13:11 May 12, 2022

Great twist at the end! I was not expecting it.

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14:20 May 12, 2022

Thank you so much!

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Kat Westover
13:10 May 12, 2022

Dialog can be hard but you made it look easy, almost like a poem!

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14:20 May 12, 2022

Thank you so much! I’ve definitely struggled with dialogue in the past

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Seán Mc Nicholl
19:02 May 11, 2022

Really enjoyed this! Was engaged from start to finish! Great twist at the end. Well paced and felt true to life, very relatable characters! Loved it!

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23:08 May 11, 2022

Thank you! I appreciate it!

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Phumzile Moyo
03:51 May 11, 2022

It goes without saying that i am a huge fan of your writing🥰. Part 2? 👀

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12:03 May 11, 2022

Thank you! I appreciate you so much! Hehe maybe

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03:26 May 11, 2022

Woah- Please tell me there's gonna be a part two? This is good. I like it.

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12:04 May 11, 2022

Thank you! I appreciate it! I want to turn it into a longer story!

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12:31 May 11, 2022

I can't wait to see what you come up with next!

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Tyler Skaathun
23:24 May 10, 2022

The writing compelled me to view social media and the internet in a new way.

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01:15 May 11, 2022

Thank you! I appreciate that!

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Bob Martin
23:21 May 10, 2022

Amazing writing!

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01:15 May 11, 2022

Thank you!

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Mace B
12:00 May 10, 2022

Great story, can't wait to read more submissions! Loved the pace of the story and twist at the end.

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12:38 May 10, 2022

Thank you so much!

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Bill Brocker
02:15 May 10, 2022

Great story! I really enjoy your writing!

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09:07 May 10, 2022

Thank you!!

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Sharon Hancock
01:37 May 10, 2022

This was great fun! Welcome to Reedsy! Hope to read more from you soon. There was no instagram when I was in school but I’m sure it would have been exactly like this if it had existed then. 😻

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09:09 May 10, 2022

Thank you so much! I appreciate it!

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Tori Robinson
00:53 May 10, 2022

Great job capturing the angst that is teenage life. Can confirm I hear this often at work!

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01:01 May 10, 2022

Thank you so much!

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Jessica Menzel
15:42 May 09, 2022

I enjoyed this so much! Cant wait to see more writings from you. What a fun read!!

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15:47 May 09, 2022

Thank you so much!

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Val Bullock
16:50 May 08, 2022

Enjoyed it very much !!

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16:52 May 08, 2022

Thank you!

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Dhwani Jain
08:10 May 08, 2022

Lovely read! I adored the twist!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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09:41 May 08, 2022

Thank you!

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Dhwani Jain
09:52 May 08, 2022

=D Where are you from?

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