I love Leah and I love that she makes a cake for her friends' birthdays. I used to do that in high school too! (not always cake, but some sort of baked good). The part where she made these cakes and then couldn't even be there to give them to her friends because shse felt too disconnected and unappreciated sorta broke my heart.
But then it led to this wonderful story about the friendship between Leah and Taylor and honestly I loved it so much. Taylor is a really interesting character, I think - like she's often shallow and self-involved, but so are a lot of high school girls? it's just a phase, and so while she does often say really annoying things, I don't dislike her really. The fact that she chased off the bullies during the rehearsal for the play said a lot about her, like it showed that there's more to her than the vain person she is usually, a side of her that is concerned about others and kind of shows who she has the potential to be. and I think it was that side of her that came out again in this story - she was there for Leah and didn't ask questions and just helped her take her mind off things.
I really appreciated the last section too, when Taylor is clearly going through something difficult and needs her inhaler and a friend with her who won't ask questions. It illustrates how everyone has something going on in their life that you can't necessarily tell at first glance, and you never really know what other people might be dealing with that they don't talk about. That's such an important lesson to learn, and I think Taylor was the perfect character to show that with because of the image she projects to everyone versus what she's dealing with on a personal level. And it allowed for this scene of such a beautifully honest friendship - even though they don't actually tell each other what's going on, both of them are vulnerable enough to show the other that they're hurting and the other is there to be what they need, and yeah I just really loved it <3 Great story.