A life in the year of Emily Shark
It's not easy having a crush on a colleague. I have no control over when I'll see him again. Snow, half-term and a sneezy cold have kept us apart. I only saw him once last week, in the car park.
It's impossible to have a good daydream for more than 10 seconds at a time.
I keep being interrupted by a lunch duty or a child's nosebleed.
So my fantasy about Mr Gorgeous has to get straight to the point - snog, strip, no time for a story. It's annoying and unfair, since most of the books I'm teaching must have started as daydreams. Take Jane Eyre. Yeah, I know, Charlotte Bront had stuff to say about "wimmin and societee", but she also liked daydreaming about a grumpy, dark-eyed man who lived in a scary house with a big dog. She had some hot rescue fantasies, too. Here's me, saving Mr Grumpy from a horse, a fire, a loony...
"Miss! Miss!" WUMP! "Did you see that? That's my chair. I always sit there!"'
"Well, you're young. You can change. Come and sit here... Now!"
The thing is, by cutting straight to the snog, I miss out the bit when Mr Gorgeous first becomes aware of my marvellousness. The whole point of a daydream is to turn the admiration round from him to me. Jane Eyre gives more than a hundred pages to that. Let's see... I know - he walks into my lesson and sees me brilliantly stopping a fight by, erm... "Miss! Sarah's feeling sick."
If I had an office job I could just shut the door and do this properly. Or if I lived on a moor... Breaktime. Here he is! The last time we spoke was when he broke my mug. If this were a Hardy novel, my class would be writing essays on the tragic symbolism of the mug-breaking scene.
"Hi. Emily, is it? Listen, I'm sorry about your mug..."
Those eyes. Slate blue. Slate grey. What colour is slate?
"Oh, yes, no... that's OK."
"I fixed it and left it on the rack over there, but..."
That voice. It's like rolling naked in a velvet cloak.
"Thanks. Don't worry, it'll turn up."
"I'll look out for it. See you later."
La-la-la. Oh, calm down Shark! "See you later" just means, "We share the same planet." You probably won't see him for days.
Right, time to go. Better check the noticeboard first for more sodding room changes. They always put them up at the last bloody minute, when the bell's already gone and... Oh wow! "'Mr Salvatore to Room 9." That's right next to my classroom!
Help. OK, just be cool. Be normal. And, somehow, be fantastic. Wouldn't it be great to spend Saturday in bed with something that's not a virus?
More from Emily in a fortnight