"Notice something different?"

Hannah smiled in a manner she intended to be coy.

Mike interpreted it as shy, and not meant for him. He grinned, and chuckled, as his eyes passed immediately off of her, and over Beth, and Josh, and Sam, and Chris, and Emily - no stopping.

"It's real nice, you guys," said Josh, in his usual half-stoned, warmly-dreamy drawl.

"Yeah!" Sam's happy sigh. "Gosh, Han - it turned out so pretty..."

"Mike - Em..." Beth, now - stepping into the middle of the circle, gently pulling her sister in with her. Hannah turned, halfway. "Look - isn't it cute...?"

"Yeah, it's... nice, Han." Emily's terse syllables. Mike's eyes continued to move. They panned across Em with her arms crossed, giving a sharp nod.

Onward to Chris, chuckling and adjusting his glasses. "Jesus, Hannah, like - not that... not to... uh..."

"Choose your words carefully, hermano."

"...insinuate... that you're not one of the cool kids..."

"Like her big bro?"

"...but, ha, man... I never took you for the type to go within fifty miles of the part of town where you get all the shops...!"

"Pot meet kettle, man...!" Josh grinned bright, and absorbing the gleam of the atmosphere, so did Mike, absorbing it likewise, passively, as the guy gave Chris a whumping shoulder-tackle. "I'm gonna have to - have to get some tequilas in you, we'll go to the seediest place in town - "

"I'm trying to get out of my shell a little bit," Mike barely heard Hannah say. Barely saw her smile, still taking it as shy, with her chin tucked down to her chest, dark eyes doelike behind her glasses.

Before she stepped back, and disappeared entirely.

And Mike entirely forgot her.

"Shit," he laughed, holding his head up and trying to catch every eye with his surveying from above, "any of you guys hear what happened down at the Victoria's Secret yesterday? Hoooooly fuckin' Stromboli, am I glad I'm not that chick's boyfriend...!"


Hannah stood before the mirror in her room, inspecting the butterfly tattoo on her arm in the dim light, framing its top and bottom with her thumb and forefinger.

Weary. Weighty.

Wondering through the ache in her chest if she should have gotten it colored, or bigger, or waited for an opportunity to share it with Mike alone.


NOTE: Written for the r/FanFiction April Daily Prompt challenge. April 4th: "Character A Has Changed Something About Their Appearance And Character B Cannot For The Life Of Them Figure Out What It Is".