"We're breaking in our new place."
Patrick and I haven’t been talking since the incident with Amber. I spend as little time as possible in the dorm. I am usually only in there to grab a book or to sleep. Otherwise I study in the library or hang out with Amber and Gerard. I do take pleasure in the fact that the one time I do see my roommate he has a bruise on his cheek.
Although both Amber and I now have jobs we do not celebrate. I don’t want to take Amber back to my dorm because of Patrick and we can’t go to Gerard’s because he’d kill me. So instead we go apartment hunting. I’ve found a few in our budget in the paper and on the internet so we call them and go to check them out.
Some of them are downright scary. Others are decent. It isn’t until late in the afternoon that we find the one that is ours. It is a few blocks from Amber’s school, a little further for me. It doesn’t really matter. I’m less afraid of taking public transportation. It is a studio apartment with an alcove off of the living room where the bed is supposed to go. The bathroom is small but neither of us really minds.
As Amber and I walk through I know it is the one. Sure it is a bit older and far from perfect but it is imperfectly perfect. The single window looks rickety and the hardwood floors are stained. The walls are half brick and the heat is provided from a radiator. It is the sun, shining through the window in the late afternoon, lighting the place with an orange glow, which makes it perfect. Amber looks stunning standing there, the sun behind her, smile on her face. This is our home.
My mom and Donna help Amber and I put down the first payment and deposit right away. After that we collect our stuff from New Jersey, my dorm room, and Gerard’s flat. We only take what we need since Amber and I will still be making trips home on the weekends. After some discussion we end up taking my mattress and investing in a bed frame for it. I think there will come a time when Amber needs her bed to be in her room. Due to our small budget Donna and my mother help us get the rest of the essentials such as plates and chairs and things.
Everyone helps us move our stuff and then they leave us to spend the rest of the day unpacking. It is perfect. Amber and I always talked about living together, even before we fell in love. It was just a code. We were best friends. We always said we would have a ‘bachelor’ pad and throw the most amazing parties. Now we are a couple and we can still throw amazing parties.
As the sun starts to go down and the orange glow fills the apartment Amber decides to hand her snowflake. She takes a chair and stands up on it. I watch her the entire time. Amber lifts her hands above her head and pins the snowflake to the ceiling right in front of the window. It sparkles in the orange light and dances off her face. Call me a hopeless romantic but Amber is lovely.
I step towards her and she turns around to face me. The light halos her head and makes the darker strands in her red hair stand out. Amber puts her hands on my shoulders and I kiss her stomach. I grip her hips and use my thumbs to gently lift the fabric of her cotton band shirt. I move it up so I can kiss those sparrow tattoos. Goosebumps pop up over her skin as Amber moves her fingers through my hair.
“Welcome home, Amber,” I say. She smiles down at me and steps off of the chair so that she goes to her regular height just an inch below me.
“Then we should break it in,” she says.
I smile and kiss her, “You want to?”
So I kiss her again and gently push her towards the bed that is a few feet from the window. We put a curtain up across the alcove so it will be private, kind of like a bedroom. It is nice and welcoming inside. Amber sits down and I come down on top of her, continuing the kiss. I move my hand down her torso and pull her shirt up over her head and toss it to the floor. I kiss her stomach and unbutton her jeans. Then I gently pull them down, hooking my fingers in her underwear and sliding them off.
We undress each other slowly and then I slide my hand between her legs. I want this to be like the other times; special and sweet and mutually wanted. We didn’t get birth control like we’d promised my mom but we do have condoms. I pull away for a moment to get one. Then I go back to Amber and pull her onto my lap. I hold her tightly as she presses her lips against my neck. Then she makes love to me.
Amber is slow at first but I can tell she wants it, she breaths heavily and gasps, clutching at my skin. I can’t believe how lucky I am that Amber and I are together now. I have dreamt about this moment a million times and now here she is. Her kisses on my skin and sighs in my ears.
The doorbell rings a few minutes later and I know it is Jonny and Liz and Alex. I don’t want this moment with Amber to end. There is nothing you can do to pull me away from here. What I have for Amber goes beyond endorphins or simple physical gratification. It is a need, pure and simple. I need to keep holding her…I need to keep feeling her.
“Ignore it,” I say with a heavy breath.
“I was planning on it,” she replies. Then they start knocking.
“Open the door, fuckers!” Jonny’s voice say.
“Go…away!” I shout.
“You told me to come over. Answer the fucking door.”
“I don’t want to stop,” Amber tells me.
“Then don’t,” I answer.
Amber squeezes me and moves her head towards my neck. The she moans. It is quiet and soft but a moan nonetheless and I am sure our friends heard it.
“Are you guys fucking?” Jonny asks. “You guys fucking suck. We’ll wait downstairs.”
Then the hall goes quiet. So I push Amber onto her back and lift her knees. When we finish we take a moment to collect ourselves.
“You know what’s weird?” I ask as we are still.
I open my eyes and look down at Amber. Her beautiful red hair is spread across the bed, her bare skin pale and glistening. Amber’s eyes are heavily lidded and satisfied, forest green shining behind dark lashes. Her breathing is heavily and her fingers are resting across her bare chest. Amber is a work of art.
“What?” she asks.
“I used to dream about this all the time. I never actually thought it would happen.”
“That what would happen, that you’d have sex with me?”
“Yeah,” I answer.
Amber smiles, eyes glistening. Her upper lip puckering out and the corners of her mouth curved. Her lips are soft and pink; her cheeks are flushed and rosy.
“You dreamt about it?”
I smile and lean over onto my knuckles to put myself at eye level with her. She runs her hands up my arms lovingly.
“Yeah, I still dream about it.”
I kiss her and she holds my face in her hands.
“That’s okay. I dream about it too.”
“I can make your dreams come true.”
“Oh, ha, ha, ha, real comedian, Frank Iero over here,” Amber laughs.
“You love me.”
I kiss her again, “I should probably go get Jonny.”
“Probably,” Amber agrees.
“Get some clothes on before I come back.”
I smile and kiss her again.
I reluctantly stand up and close the curtain. I pull my bowers and jeans back on and then slide my shirt on. I slip my feet into my shoes and when I come back to Amber she is already dressed in her shorts and concert tee, sitting on the edge of the bed. I kiss her quickly.
I leave the apartment and head down to the lobby. Jonny, Alex and Liz are waiting for me. Jonny has a six pack of beer.
“Hey,” I say coming up to them. Jonny narrows his eyes.
“Christ, you look like a guy who’s had a great time. Look at your hair,” he says.
I smooth out my hair.
“And his eyes,” Liz says. “He looks stoned or like he just got fucked.”
I just laugh.
“And that lazy, satisfied grin,” Alex says.
“Well are you coming up or not?” I ask.
“As long as the apartment doesn’t smell like sex,” Jonny says.
“I’ll light incense. C’mon.”
They follow me back up to the apartment and I let them in. Amber is still sitting on the bed looking as satisfied as I feel. I go right over to her and take her face in my hands, kissing her. Then I jump up onto the bed so that I pull her with me and we fall over. I kiss her deeply.
“Jesus Christ,” Jonny says.
“It still makes me feel awkward. Like watching your brother and sister make out,” Liz says.
“It could be worse. We could have heard them fucking.”
“I heard them,” Alex says.
“That’s sick,” Liz replies scrunching up her nose.
“Alright, enough,” Jonny says slapping his hands together. “Scat. Knock it off.”
Amber and I pull apart, sitting upright to face our friends.
“You can’t just invite people over and spend all your time making out with each other. It’s rude,” Jonny explains.
“We’re breaking in our new place,” I explain.
“You guys are disgusting. We brought you some beer.” Jonny sticks the six pack on the counter. .
“Sweet,” I climb off the bed to go get one.
Liz sits down next to Amber, “So you and Frank were doing it.”
“Oh my God,” Amber replies her cheeks going pink.
“We heard you.”
“Oh my God…Liz, stop.”
“It sounded like you were enjoying yourself.”
“You’re in love,” Liz sings.
“Yeah… definitely,” Amber answers as she looks over at me.
I smile at her, our feeling definitely mutual.