More adventures before her plane takes off.
Night fell. I was sitting on my balcony. There's one chair, a table and sometimes my radio if I want to be extremely annoying and wake up the whole neighborhood with my MCR obsession. Tonight was not one of those nights, though. As usual, I couldn't sleep. I took a long drag out of my cigarette and set it back on my ashtray. I looked over the city's glowing lights that I could see from up here, my bird's eye view. One more day. One more day before I would leave this life that I had had forever, the life I had hated forever. So why was I sad? I touched my cheek, surprised to feel wet warmth running down it. A tear. More followed, and more, until I was sobbing, and I didn't know why. That night I fell asleep early for the first time in months, on my balcony with the cigarette smoke wafting and spiraling into thin air, with a warm breeze blowing my hair off my shoulders as I drifted to sleep.
Heat. That was all. Blasting into my face like a subway train. I sat up, back stiff from the uncomfortable chair, rubbed my eyes, and looked around. Crap. I had fallen asleep on the balcony. I stretched and sat down again, thinking to myself what the point was to stretch if I was about to sit down again anyway. Oh well.
I ate toast with butter and sat down in the middle of the grass in the backyard, reading my book again. Really, I have no life. At least not in the summer.
Suddenly, a shadow appeared over my novel, hiding the words. "Hello," said a voice.
I jumped and looked up, shading my eyes from the sun, and recognized Justin. God was he hot. No! Gerard! Don't think about him. Gerard! I was having a hard time masking all the emotions running through my head. Excitement, that he was talking to me. (No! No!) Curiosity that he had somehow managed to find out where I lived. Slight anger that he had sneaked up on me that quietly and again, curiosity of where he had come from.
I kept my face expressionless, pushing my black bangs that just covered one eye (clichÃ© alert!) behind my ear, but broke out into my trademark soft half-smile. "Hey. Where did you come from? Are you a stalker or something?"
He laughed and sat next to me on the grass. "I'm your next door- well, more of over the fence neighbor. Sorry, I'm no stalker." He pointed over the wall that separated my house from the next one and I caught a glimpse of a beautiful house across the street.
I couldn't stop myself from staring at him. He too had black side bangs that covered one eye but were longer than mine, a snake-fang earring in his right ear, tight skinny black jeans and a black hoodie that read Bury Me In Black on a sleeve. "So you're a fan?" I asked, pointing to the words.
He looked down at his sleeve and grinned. "Surprised you recognized that one, not many people do. But with you I shouldn't have been. You're an obsessed fan, eh?"
I rolled my eyes and was about to correct him with the fan girls at Starbucks analogy when he said, "But I know you're not one of those people who'll like, swarm Gerard at Wal-Mart or something. You and I like the band for its music."
"Exactly!" I gasped. "Can you read my mind? I always think the same thing except Gerard's at Starbucks surrounded by screaming, cooing girls in pink miniskirts so excited they spill their coffee on him." I didn't add the part about my fantasy where I was the cashier and charmed Gerard, due to the fact that I had already served a stint at Starbucks as the requisite sullen teenage employee that messed up numerous preppy girls' and businesspeoples' coffees and refused to fix them new ones. I had only gotten the job because I needed some extra money and a friend of my mother's was a manager of a nearby Starbucks. Needless to say, I was soon fired after spilling coffee all over my boss's boyfriend as I handed him his drink in the drive-though window.
He laughed again, then sprawled out on the grass. "So how's life? Any exciting summer plans? Jetting off to Paris, or maybe Hawaii?" He looked at me expectantly.
"I... I" I said. I knew I looked and sounded stupid, like a fish gasping for air. But could I tell him about the quest for Gerard? Would he be hurt, like I didn't like him? Did he think I liked him? Did he like me? Hellpppp! Stop, I mentally told myself. My mind tends to wander and ramble a lot. Should I tell him?
We seemed to have the exact same tastes and even feelings. I could trust Justin, I knew. "Ok," I said. "I'm going to find Gerard Way."
"You what?" he exclaimed, sitting up straight and leaning forward onto his hands. "Tell me."
So I did. I told about the great idea, my flight which was going to take off that night, how I had found the band's hotel, and how I planned to find Gerard either at the hotel or at his concert. Then because I was already spilling my heart out to Justin, I told him how I hated my mother, McKenna was the perfect and bratty little sister and how everyone thought I was emo. Fine, maybe I was, but nothing like what the people at school thought.
Justin listened quietly, then said, "I had no idea."
"No you didn't. I never talk to anyone, so it's a miracle I just said all those things." My comfortable exterior had long since cracked, and I was standing up, moving away now, afraid that he knew too much but still wanting to be by him. I returned, running back and wanting to end the conversation in some way other than escaping. "I'm sorry. It's just, well, I haven't felt this comfortable to someone other than my poster of My Chemical Romance."
He laughed, then turned serious. "You're really going then." It was not a question but a statement.
"Yes." It was not an answer but a conformation of his fears. "I'm sorry. I wish you could come too."
"It would be an amazing adventure. Sadly, I'm not rich enough."
We stood silently for a moment before I touched his arm. "I'm sorry." Suddenly he grabbed my arm and spun me in front of him so we were standing face to face, lips almost touching, before I broke away. His head hung, and instantly I regretted it. Softly I kissed him on the cheek.
It was his turn to break away and stare at me in wonderment. Self-conscious, Justin ran towards the wall, as if to leave, but suddenly turned back. "Star?"
"I- I really like you. And as more than just a friend." Face burning, he hesitated for a moment and then jumped the wall with ease. I watched as he ran away. Softly I whispered, "I do too," knowing he couldn't hear me before slowly picking up my things and going back into the house.
The way we had been before he almost kissed me lingered in my mind, as did his parting words. "I like you as more than just a friend." It'll all go away, I told myself. The words I whispered to myself? No one could hear them. They didn't exist. They didn't! I willed myself to forget those three simple words. You don't like him, I thought. No. I'll all go away when you find Gerard. But I still didn't believe myself, even at 12:30 AM as I boarded my plane.
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