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‘I just don’t want to,’ I said.

‘Don’t be pretentious,’ he replied.

‘Who would know? If you sniffed a little?’

‘I would know the truth. And I would rather die than lie to myself. For you will eventually leave; all I will have is what I did and said. I would hardly be at ease if it was a pile of stuff I gave into without wanting to.’

‘It doesn’t have to be all serious or nonsense. Just a party there, a drink here. A smoke there, a sniff here. Loosen up, kid. Live a little.’

‘Why can I not make choices without you assuming that yours is the better one? Why can I not do what I please? Why do I need to justify my actions and choices to you?’

‘So, you will never listen?’ he threatened.

I stood my ground and shook my head. I didn’t always have such confidence. I was shaking inside. But I knew, he wasn’t a friend. Just a bully.