You'd harboured a grudge against Felix for a long time. Not for the same reason as the other students did, nudging each other when he passed by, glaring at him with utter disgust, mouthing that three letter word to each other behind his back. No, you weren't a homophobe, by any means. Your grudge against Felix was one of jealousy. Because he seemed free and happy to wear a uniform he felt comfortable in, while you were forced to wear the wrong one. The girl's one.
You had no idea when you first realised you were a boy; it had never seemed to matter when you were a child. Your parents had been pretty liberal about who and what you played with back then, even if they had little patience when you corrected them for saying 'she'. But since you started Secondary, it had mattered so, so much. Your body had started to change, to form itself into the shape of somebody you weren't. Outside of school, you took to wearing baggy shirts to hide your body, cutting your hair short and refusing to talk, terrified that your voice would ruin everything. But in school, you had no choice but to wear the girl's uniform. A fact that you hated from the very pits of your soul.
And that was why you were jealous of Felix; because he was free to break the rules while you were forced to live a lie. A lie that tore you apart, that left you feeling absolutely empty inside. You'd have done anything to be born into the right body, anything at all. But there was nothing you could do, nobody you could talk to, nobody who you could hate other than yourself. And Felix.
The thing is, you can never hate anybody as much as you want to.
You remember everything about that day clearly. The day was sunny, but cold, the drops of dew on the grass just starting to turn to frost, the tops of puddles just starting to freeze. You were in art, only half listening to the teacher droning on about some art style you'd never heard of and, quite honestly, would have been utterly happy if you never had. The style was about expressing inner frustrations, inner insecurities, you remember him saying. And the most important thing was to be honest about them. You snorted, knowing there was no way you were going to be able to talk about your honest problems. All you needed to do was throw together some generic teenage angst problems and pretend that they actually meant something to you. You sighed, staring at the blank piece of paper in front of you.
As it turns out, nobody took the thing seriously at all. The teacher had to leave midway through the lesson leaving the class unattended. As expected when a group of teenagers are left alone, a couple of guys immediately started a paint fight. And, even though you were only on the sidelines, you got splattered with the almost florescent green. You knew you had to clean the paint off and, given that there were no mirrors in the art room, there was only one place you could go. The one place you didn't want to go.
You must have stood outside the toilets for about ten minutes, not wanting to venture inside. It would be like giving in to the lie, saying that you actually were a girl after all and that you made up the part about being a boy. You started to shake, trying to convince yourself that you could just run in quickly and nobody would notice. But you couldn't go in, couldn't do this to yourself. You took a sigh and were about to walk away when a familiar voice sounded behind you.
"Why are you, like, taking so long? It's a toilet, honey."
You snapped around, coming face to face with the one person you really could not face right now. He didn't even blink, just staring right back at you, his green eyes meeting your (e/c) ones. "It's complicated, ok?"
You covered your mouth with your hand the moment you let that slide. Shit; you really shouldn't have said that. Now he'd know there was something wrong. You'd seen how people treated him; if he was even remotely sane he'd try to get them to pick on somebody else. You looked away, not wanting to look him in the eyes.
"Ok, whatever." You looked back up, confused. But he'd already turned away, not wanting to probe any further. "None of my business." He walked away, not turning back once. Your jaw dropped.
Once you'd actually talked to Felix, you couldn't help but want to talk to him more, sitting next to him in the lunch hall, partnering up with him for subjects when both of you were alone. You weren't attracted to him, god no. But you couldn't help the feeling that maybe, just maybe, he'd be somebody you could talk to about things, somebody you would find it fun to hang out with. Which he was, even if you didn't have the same love for gossip as him, or he the love you had for video games. But you both listened and nodded, enjoying each other's company.
Felix was also the first person you came out to. He took it pretty well, actually, considering how much of a shock it must have been. Well, actually, given that he knew that you kept rolls of ace bandages in your room, even though you hardly ever got injured, and utterly refused to talk out loud in public, despite how talkative you could really get, he must have at least guessed. And Felix had given you the courage to come out to your parents. It had been an uphill struggle; that was for sure. Sometimes you still heard your mother crying about how her little girl was gone. But, for the most part, they seemed to accept it. And you were finally about to do something you had only ever dreamed of before.
You crossed your fingers as you walked into school, praying that nobody would notice you. Turns out, God didn't really like you, because the moment you entered through the door, you were spotted by the person who could only be described as the queen bee of your school. She took one look at you, eyes widening with shock.
"[Fem!Name], you're breaking the rules so much, you know?" her eyes narrowed, a hint of a glare entering them. "Why the fuck are you even wearing a boy's uniform anyway?"
If you had to tell the story later, you'd have said you'd given a rousing speech that left everyone speechless and made everybody finally see you as the manly man you were. What actually happened was far, far less heroic or interesting. You only managed to stammer out one sentence, cursing your pathetically high voice as you did so.
"I-If I'm breaking the rules, then you are too."
Luckily, Felix swooped in to save you.
"And [M!Name]'s wearing the boy's uniform because he's, like, a boy."
You would never, ever forget the look on that girl's face. Ever.