Things go a little too far.
"Hey Ms. Iero," I say.
"Morning dear," she replies returning my sleepy smile.
I'm pretty positive if Frank’s mother found any other girl asleep on her sofa she’d be pissed. But, I’ve done this enough that she’s just used to it. She simply stopped being worried about Frank bringing a girl home because she knew that there was no way anything would ever happen between us.
This thought causes my heart to ache. Why does the fact that Frank and I will never be together upset me so much? Do I really want anything to happen with Frank? That’s insane…then again it’s not. I liked Frank a lot…way more that I’d ever let him know. I’m positive he’ll never feel the same about me.
"What's for breakfast?" I sit feeling a little uncomfortable being stared at blankly by the steal grey eyes of Frank’s mom even though I know she has no problem with me being here.
"My favorite," I answer as Ms. Iero picks up the cordless phone set out on the little end table by the arm of the couch. I have a feeling I know who she is calling.
"I have something that belongs to you," she finally says, flashing me a thumbs up to let me know my mom said it’s alright to stay. “Alright, I’ll let her know.... Not a problem. Bye." She hangs up and lets the phone fall to the coffee table. "She said be home by lunch."
"Can do," I answer just happy that my mother is letting me stay over. While Aunt Donna and Frank’s mom are alright with me being over here all the time my mother has never been to keen on the idea of me spending the night at a boys house.
"Frank's upstairs if you want to wake him up. I'm leaving for work in an hour and I need the couch."
"Sounds like a plan. Thanks." I get up, hurrying up the stairs to Frank’s bedroom, attempting not to trip over the pillow and blanket in my arms.
Frank's bedroom is the door at the top of the stairs. Like my room, it is small and cluttered. Really the only difference between my room and Frank’s is that his bed is simply a full sized mattress pushed up against the wall. Frank, being a boy, doesn’t really use his closet or dresser. Instead clothes are strewn everywhere. His guitar, is propped up in the corner, his small TV shoved in another corner, the X-box sitting right next to it. There is still a crack in the screen of the television where I accidently threw the X-box remote. I really should get some money and buy him a new one for Christmas or something.
My eyes flick over the mess, spotting Frank, sprawled out on his bed, similar to the way I was downstairs. I toss my pillow on the mattress next to him, letting the blanket fall to the floor. The sticky summer air is seeping in through the window, making Frank’s tiny room very hot.
As I crawl in next to him, Frank’s eyes shoot open, a smile creeping over his face when he sees it’s me.
"Your mom commandeered the couch," I explain.
"Oh," he answers with a slight nod before closing his eyes and falling back into a peaceful sleep.
I attempt to follow suit but find it impossible. It’s weird to me because this is a common thing…Frank and I sleep in the same bed at least three or four times a week, but it has never been awkward or confusing. Right now I am very confused. I just lay there in the small room, my eyes glued to the posters that litter the ceiling of Frank’s room…posters I’d seen hundreds of times.
Frank is unmoving accept for the constant rise and fall that came from his breathing. We are close enough that I can smell him, that familiar Frank smell of Irish Spring and cigarettes. Normally that smell brings me comfort but right now it makes me feel as if I need to hurl.
I turn on my side, eyes on his face, thinking that maybe if I looked at him these weird feelings will go away. This does not help at all. His dark blue shirt is tight against his body, showing off his pecks as well as his muscled arms, reminding me that Frank spends every Friday after school in the gym a few blocks from our homes. For the first time in my life, I see Frank as attractive. Not just cute like I used to see him but full blown attractive. I now see what so many other girls see. Frank Iero, my best friend, is attractive.
When Frank and I started the rumor back in middle school that we were brother and sister people had no problem believing it. Why I have no clue. Really the only thing similar between Frank and I is that, at the time, my hair was black. Otherwise Frank and I look nothing alike. He has the most gorgeous hazel green eyes; speckled with brown…they remind me of the forest. My eyes are large and green with the occasional speck of gold. Frank's lips are thin but soft, perfectly kissable now that I stop and think about it. My upper lip is bigger than the bottom, a feature that I really wish I could change.
If I kiss him, would he kiss me back? The thought scares me and in an attempt to drive it from my mind I shake my head, red, curly hair hitting me in the face. Frank could never like me as more than a friend. He’s madly in love with Devlin and compared to her I look like a orc straight out of Mordor.
Suddenly, it is brought to my attention that Frank isn’t breathing. Suffering from sleep apnea for some time now I know this is not good. Mine had to do with my asthma but Frank doesn’t have anything wrong with him. Could it be from the smoking? Internally I’m panicking though on the outside I try to look calm. I continue to watch him for a few seconds. When he doesn’t start breathing I poke him in the forehead with my middle finger. Suddenly he lunges for me, tackling me as he laughs.
"Tricked you!" he says, sporting his infamous smirk only Frank is capable of producing.
Then he rolls me over onto my back and pins me to the bed with his legs. I shriek mainly because my reaction to him jumping on me was delayed. Before I can even attempt to get away Frank reaches down and squeezes me right under the armpit. That is when all hell breaks loose. I squirm and shriek and laugh, trying to get away. Frank laughs along with me, still pinning me down to the mattress.
Occasionally one of us gets elbowed in the face but that doesn’t stop our fun. We roll around the bed a few times, struggling and fighting with him trying to tickle me and me trying to stop him. I am losing, I always loose. Finally Frank rolls over onto his back so that I am on top of him, straddling him between my legs. I sigh in defeat and go limp. So that my face is nestled in his neck, my arms sprawled out. Playing dead is my only way to win this game.
"Oh no," Frank says, "Amber, are you okay?" He pokes my face. "Amber? Amber? Oh no!"
His voice raises a few octaves and I know he thinks I’ve passed out from a lack of oxygen. I don’t care; I’ll let him bug out for a few minutes. “Amber, come on, wake up. Amber I won’t make it without you. Amber, are you even alive? Amber are you havig an attack?”
Frank pokes me in the ribs, causing me to flinch, giving off a giggle. I hate being poked in the ribs.
Now that Frank is positive I’m alright he flips me back over onto my back so I am lying under him. I keep my eyes closed as he gently shakes me by my shoulders, my head bouncing up and down on the mattress.
“Amber wake up!”
The corners of my mouth twitch as I fight off another giggle. Sometimes Frank can be so clueless.
“Are you really dead? Amber if you’re not dead or having an attack you need to inform me now before I take advantage of you,” Frank says, his face close to mine causing my heart to speed up. That isn’t how I’m supposed to react. “I will take advantage of you Amber.”
Hmm, that has its appeals. Wait, what? That should not have any appeals, whatsoever. Except that Frank is lying between my legs, our reproductive organs dangerously close. Stop! You shouldn’t be thinking like that Amber.
"Last chance," Frank cautions.
I offer him nothing, so he pokes my nonexistent boob with his finger. I sit up sharply and our heads crash together. Out of instinct my fingers go up to touch the hurting spot. I hope I don’t get a bruise
"Ow! You touched my boob, you pervert!" I shriek.
He laughs, smirking down at me, “I told you I was going to take advantage of you."
So I do the only thing I can do, I start hitting him in the arm, over and over although I know it doesn’t hurt him that badly. Frank laughs, attempting to get away but I wrap my legs around his waist, pulling him down, pressing a certain part of his body closer to mine.
"Okay, okay, okay," he says but I don’t stop. Instead I intertwine my fingers in his hair pulling his face closer to mine.
Frank doesn’t stop me. Instead his hand goes around the back of my neck, pulling me close to him. As our lips touch I can feel tiny sparks. As his tongue flicks against my lip I touch mine to his. Frank’s hand trails down my body, slipping between my back and the mattress, pushing me up towards him. As our organs brush against each other through the fabric of our pajama pants I moan.
Just then Frank’s bedroom door opens and we pull apart, my legs still wrapped around his waist. The both of us freeze, hoping Ms. Iero didn’t see what was going on before. Her expression lets me know she hadn’t. Frank’s mom doesn’t think anything of this…I’m Amber the awkward girl from across the alley…nothing could ever happen between me and her son.
"I'm heading out," she says.
"Alright, later," Frank replies, his eyes still locked with mine.
"Bye, Ms. Iero," I answer.
She smiles one more time and then leaves us. Frank is now leaning against his arms which are resting on either side of my head. He smiles down at me, his lips just a little red and puffy from our previous activities. I bet he regrets it.
"It's funny how she doesn't get mad about this anymore," he muses.
"She would have been if she saw the little bit before,” I reply. Frank’s eyebrows furrow as if my comment has confused him.
"We’re never bringing that up again. Hungry?"
My heart sinks…he felt nothing. He sees it as a mistake made in the heat of the moment and why shouldn’t he? Frank has a gorgeous girlfriend and I’m his best friend. Never less never more…this fact upsets me greatly.
"Let's go forage, shall we?"
"Foraging sounds good."
Frank climbs off me, kissing my forehead before helping me up off the bed. We then walk out of his room.
"Sorry I poked your boob," he says as we head down the stairs.
"Fucker," is my reply even though I want to say so much more.