To read between the lines, and other cliches like that.

She said hello.
[Holy crap she said hello.
What does that mean? Does that mean she likes me?
No, don’t be silly – she’s just friendly, just saying hello. Everyone says hello.
That’s not true. Some people say ‘hey’ or ‘hi’. ‘Hello’ is quite forceful when you think about it. Damn it, that means she’s not relaxed. Is saying hello to me a chore? I don’t want her to think she has to be formal around me.
Damn it, man. You’ve screwed it up again.
Did she smile? Yes she did. Okay that’s a good sign. But don’t look into it too much – she probably smiles at everyone. You know she does – that’s why she’s so pretty.
Wow, that was even awkward to just think.
But it’s so true! Ugh her hair and her eyes and her mouth and her nose. Oh my god her nose!
Wow it’s definitely weird that you like her nose.
I’m okay with it.
Of course you are.
Okay. I need to say something now. I’m thinking maybe a ‘hey’.
But then you give her the conversation – don’t make her ask the questions. Be confident!
Okay Okay! How’s this?]
“Hey, how are you?” he asked back, returning a smile as he lowered his headphones from atop his head.
“I’m good! Just, you know, busy with class and stuff”
[Oh crap, she said ‘and stuff’
That means she’s doing stuff other than uni! Maybe it’s some suave Italian guy named ‘Juan’ or something. She probably met him in the park whilst he was taking photos of birds and noting how incredibly delicate and beautiful they are. Damn it, you’ve screwed it up again!
Did I sound like I was kidding?
It’s probably nothing. Go on. Say something else.
It totally isn’t. We need to back away.
NO! Hold on, we can power through.
Okay okay! Don’t need to be so violent! Maybe this is okay.]
“Ahh really? Hope it’s not building up on you?”
“No, it’s okay, It’s just enough stress for it to be helpful” she laughed, still holding the textbook in her arms, clutched towards her chest.
[Okay, stay cool, she just laughed.
Get a grip! This is an opportunity. Here, say this]
“That’s good I guess” he chuckled in return, glancing down towards the table and then returning his gaze. “You always need some time off though”
“Yeah I guess, I just need everything sorted out and I’ll be okay” she nodded, shrugging slightly, her textbook slipping slightly.
[She’s being very vague.
That’s cause you’re being vague.]
“Oh I haven’t seen that film you recommended yet!” she jolted. “I’ll get around to it soon though.”
“Oh, yeah, well let me know when you see it – I think you’ll like it, I did”
“Yes your taste in films usually delivers quite well, I find” she smiled again – beamed, really.
[Was that a compliment?
I think so.
Holy crap! That was a compliment!
Okay, stay cool. Ask her to sit down. Maybe she wants a cup of coffee or something?
No, tea, she likes tea.
Okay, tea then, jeez…]
“Hey, do you want to sit down?” he motioned towards the chair opposite. “Might get a cup of tea or something?”
“Oh, I can’t, I have to go to a meeting. Supervisor needs to discuss my report, it’s all quite tedious,” she said, swaying slightly, her finger fiddling with the spine of her book.
[Damn it.
Maybe she genuinely has to go?
It’s worth a shot, come on.]
“Ahh okay” he said, in a manner that could surely have hid his disappointment more adequately. “Maybe another time?”
“Yeah sure! Give me a call and we’ll set something up” she said as she adjusted her stance, motioning towards the door.
“Sure, sure” he nodded, smiling.
“See you”
[See, that was okay right?
I guess.]
He smiled to himself.
[I just need to call her at some point now. Make sure that’s not too awkward.
Don’t worry it’ll be fine. You’ve talked on the phone before, mate.
You think?
Yeah. One thing though – do you have her number?]
And soon as the smile came, it vanished, his hand grabbing his forehead.
“Shit” he mumbled into table. 

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