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I am writing a fanfic about these two childhood friends, but I don't know how to really introduce their crushes. Character A has a huge crush on Character B, which is the only reason why Character A is in B's friend group. Character B also has a crush, but I don't want to be explicit on it, since he tries to hide it a lot.

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You leave out the relevant information. It is completely irrelevant what is revealed. The question is:

Is the story about X or is X one of the central goals, motivations, fears etc. of the protagonist or antagonist? That is, does X drive the plot?

There are four possible answers to this question:

  1. If yes, and it already exists when the narrative starts, you need to reveal it to the reader right at the beginning, ideally in the first sentence or paragraph or page.

  2. If yes, and it enters the life of the protagonist unexpectedly with the inciting incident, you will automatically tell of it then.

  3. If it doesn't drive the plot, inform the reader of it whenever it becomes relevant.

Exception:

  1. Keep X secret, if the mystery drives the plot.

Do not keep secret anything that your viewpoint character knows. That is irritating and bad storytelling.


Examples (according to the numbers above):

  1. [Opening sentence:] A had had a crush on B since kindergarten but had never dared tell them. ...

  2. [Beginning:] A lived their normal everyday life [inciting incident:] until they met B. They immediately developed a big crush on them and their whole life was turned upside down. ...

  3. ... [somewhere in the middle:] A had a little bit of a crush on B, but since they were married they never followed up on it. ...

  4. ... [climax:] "But I love you!" "Why didn't you tell me? We could have avoided all this and been a happy couple. Now it is too late." ...


There are several questions on this site that deal with when or how to reveal certain information in a story. You may want to read through them.

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