Categories > Celebrities > Fall Out Boy > Opened Once.

We Used to be Friends

by ClandestineUnited 8 reviews

"You said best friends meant forever."

Category: Fall Out Boy - Rating: G - Genres:  - Published: 2007-11-07 - Updated: 2007-11-07 - 3246 words

Are 'Friends' electric?

He didn't call. He didn't knock at my door, throw a pebble at my window. As the days passed and I got more frustrated with myself, Patrick and I grew more distant each time the hour clicked by.
He had to call... school started in a few days. He would call, wouldn't he?
Of course he would.
It wasn't like I wasn't trying. I wasn't being desperate. If he didn't want me to hang around with him anymore he could just say. I'm not saying it wouldn't hurt, but it wouldn't hurt as much as being bypassed. I tried to call him without seeming too lonely. I would time when I "walked Ellie's dog" so that maybe Patrick would be walking his mum's. But he wasn't.
His car was always missing from the driveway when I got up, and still hadn't returned when I went to bed.
So I pretended nothing happened. I told Robyn Patrick's work was so busy they had to call him in, whenever she asked where he was. I shrugged at Ellie's questions as to why I wasn't going out so she could have the house to herself. Eventually, they stopped asking, stopped complaining. But I didn't stop missing Patrick.
Okay, so maybe I'm making it sound as though he'd flipped me off and ignored me for a week. But it was plainly the fact that he wasn't telling me what he was doing.
I set to completing the homework all the teachers had handed out over the summer break. The first hour went by, but as I paused on a math problem, I frowned. Patrick always helped me, even though he wasn't that much better at math himself. But we would lie on the floor and attempt to copy each other, often getting distracted along the way, writing stupid little songs or changing the lyrics to another.
I couldn't take it anymore. I left my book open and made my way down the stairs. The house was empty, Ellie was out with her friends, most likely shopping, and Robyn had gone back to work. I made sure I had my key in my pocket, a routine I made sure I performed every time I left the house. I had the worst habit of locking myself out of the house. I darted across the road to Patrick's house, and rapped on the door. The cold stung my knuckles as they collided with the wood, and my breath escaped in clouds forming around my lips as I stamped my feet against the cold. There was no answer. Don't tell me he's out now. He didn't have work, I knew his schedule. I stood back far enough to still be on the path leading up to his front door, yet not standing on the sidewalk. I pulled out my phone and dialed his number. Except it was turned off.
Why did he think he could avoid my when I lived right across the street?
His bedroom light was on, I could see. I picked up a small pebble and launched it at the window. It omitted a sharp crack as it touched the glass. I was careful enough to launch it with enough force that it would actually make a noise, but not crack the window to pieces.
Then I saw him. His face bobbed up out of nowhere, and it didn't look happy. I waved him down, and his lips formed a sigh as he disappeared from the window.
"What the hell's going on with you?" I asked, as soon as the door opened. Patrick rolled his eyes at me.
"What? You could have called me."
"I did." I replied.
"What's so urgent?"
"You!" I told him. "Where've you been?"
"Uh, having a life?" He replied. "I've been at work. And doing homework. You do know school starts on Monday, right?"
"Yes, I was aware of that. Why've you been avoiding me?"
"I haven't been avoiding you. I have a job, in case you can't remember." He retorted, a bitter tone in his voice. I know I'd shocked him by turning up, he obviously didn't expect me to, but I wasn't backing down without an answer.
"It's a part time job in a book store. It can't be that busy."
"Can we go somewhere else if we're gonna argue?"
"Certainly." I said, watching him. He grabbed his coat and slammed the door. He shoved his hands in the pockets of his jacket when he'd pulled it on and looked at me.
"Park?" He asked. I nodded and he walked away, leaving me following him. It was more like we were going for fun like we usually did, in good moods, not while we were angry at each other.
"So you think I'm avoiding you?" He asked, when we'd walked the small journey to the park. We hadn't spoken, and as Patrick launched himself onto a swing, he kicked a pile of leaves that were gathering from the trees around. The wind ruffled my hair as I watched him, watched his protective stance as he sat down on the swing and folded his arms, still rocking backwards and forwards.
"Well..." I looked around and shrugged. "I don't know. You've been distant."
"I told you, I was working."
Patrick had never lied to me before. Well, never properly. Until now.
I could see it from the way he didn't meet my eyes. From the way he inhaled sharply afterwards and avoided his gaze, anywhere but my eyes.
"Right. For four days straight, aye?"
He didn't reply. Instead, he looked at his scuffed shoes and chewed at his bottom lip.
"I've been with Anna." He said, suddenly. "I didn't want to tell you."
It took me a few seconds to realize what he'd admitted.
"Why was I with her?"
"Why didn't you want to tell me?"
He sighed. Shifted. Shrugged.
"I dunno. I figured you'd think I was ditching you."
"Well, you're pretty much running that risk either way. Especially by ignoring me."
"I don't really know what I was doing. I didn't want you to think I was ditching you, and I didn't want Anna to think I was with you."
I frowned.
"With me? Why wouldn't she want you to be with me?"
"I don't mean with you. I mean with you. Like, a couple."
"I see."
"I was a jerk." He said, "And I don't know why. I've just never had a girlfriend and I feel like such an ass."
"Because mainly everyone I know has had a girlfriend, lost their virginity or has either hooked up with someone who has a baby."
"So why do you have to follow them?"
Patrick shrugged.
"I don't know. I don't want to."
"Then don't." I said, irritated, flopping down onto the swing next to him. I didn't see why all of a sudden he had to get laid and be like everyone else. We'd both always sworn we'd never follow the crowd.
"I'm not trying to. It's exciting, I've never had a girlfriend before."
"I know."
"I'm just mixed up about what I can and can't do. Does that make any sense?"
"Not really." I replied.
No matter how much I thought of it over the next few days, it didn't make sense. Patrick and I hung out, but in the evenings he disappeared off to Anna's or to take her out somewhere. Please, don't get me wrong, I wasn't jealous. Please. I was excited, he had a new girlfriend and I loved seeing the way he smiled. He was entitled to spend time with her. Just, somewhere, down in the pit of my stomach, something was going wrong.
Maybe I should have let it go.
Maybe things would have turned out a lot differently if I had.

The first day of school was awkward. I mean, awkward. At lunch Patrick and I sat together with our group of friends, but when we caught each other's eye, we looked away, down at our trays as we toyed with our food. The rest of the day was a blur, classes bored me and I didn't pay attention, just focused on drawing on my notebooks or scrawling lyrics across the sleeves. When the bell rang at the end of the day, I snapped out of my daze and looked up at everyone packing their books away. Glancing to my right, Patrick's desk was empty. I directed my gaze to the doorway, only to see his back disappear from view.
I pushed my way through the throng of students either wrestling each other, or slamming their lockers closed as they got ready to go home. I made my way over to our lockers, where mine and Patrick's sat a few away from each other, covered in dents and peeling paint. Usually, if we had a different class at the end of the day, we waited for each other to go home together. But usually, Patrick didn't walk off at the end of class.
He wasn't there. I frowned. I was giving him a ride today, so why did he rush off? He wouldn't want to brave the cold weather as it approached October, where it began to get darker every day and the prospect of rain was very likely.
I made my way out of the school and as I stood outside, the cold air hit me and stung my cheeks. I surveyed the school parking lot, desperate for a sign of where he'd gone.
Then I saw.
Outside of the school, ride by the road, was a silver car, the paint work glinting even though there was no sun. I sort of knew Patrick would be there before I even looked at the people surrounding it.
Sure enough, Patrick was there, throwing his bag in the back seat of the car as his girlfriend leant against the car watching him. He kissed her shyly before they both got in the car. I watched it drive away, furious with Patrick for not even having the decency to tell me he was getting a ride home from Anna.
I walked over to my own battered, excuse for a car. Usually, I went with my motto that; "if it takes me where I want to go, I don't care what it looks like". But as I sat at the wheel of the car I'd somehow managed to purchase earlier on in the year, I felt so stupid. Of course Patrick would want to get a ride home in a nice car instead of a tin can, and me for company. I leant my head on the wheel and sighed. I knew what was bothering me. No way was it the fact he was no longer single.
It was the fact that he had no idea he could be in a relationship and keep his friends.
I drove to the diner, our diner, where we'd hung out with our friends in the evenings and sometimes after school. Instead, now it would be Patrick and Anna sharing an ice cream in the corner both, hidden from the prying eyes of single men and women. They would hold hands under the table like I'd seen them do before, and would share a stolen kiss in the dim light.
But myself, I pushed the door open, shaking my head from the rain, and flopped onto a seat by the counter. I bit my lip as I stared at my knees, waiting. Somehow I was hoping someone I knew was going to come through the doors after me and stop me feeling so lame.
"Ah! Is my little Scottish girl!" A familiar voice said from overhead. I looked up, and smiled weakly. Bella, was the manager of the restaurant she ran with her husband. Typically the cliche Italian woman, she always wore an apron and I don't think I've ever seen her without a rolling pin in her hand. She had jet black hair that contrasted her brown eyes, her hair scraped into a clip and loose hairs escaping and dangling by her ears. She'd always loved when Patrick and I came into the Diner. She loved us, and we loved her. She would sometimes slip us a free pizza or ice cream, despite how much we argued to pay.
"Hey, Bella." I said, politely. She gave me a small wave and looked around.
"No Patrick?" She asked, pronouncing it "Pat-reek".
I shook my head.
"He has other plans." I told her.
"Just you?"
"Just me."
She nodded in understanding and pointed backwards to the kitchen.
"You wanna pizza?"
"No, thanks. Just water." I said. Who comes into a diner and just orders a glass of water?
"Coming right up." She smiled and disappeared. I looked around, to be faced with students from my school that I knew by face, but not by name. Some older couples were seated in the booths, and younger couples who wanted a taste of 60s diner style food.
"Here." Bella greeted me with another smile, setting a glass of water down in front of me a few minutes later, and, I knew she would try, to set a glass of ice cream down by it.
"Bella, I don't..." I began, but she shook her head and put her finger to her lips.
"Enjoy it." She said, winking before turning away to serve another person. I sighed and dropped some money on the table, knowing she wouldn't take it if I handed it to her. I picked up the two glasses and made my way over to a single booth in the corner, right by the entrance to the bathrooms, the one I'd imagined Patrick and Anna sitting in. I felt strange sitting in the dimmed light, a small candle burning and a lamp attached to the wall were the only light I had. I was sitting exactly in the middle of where the imaginary Patrick and Anna sat in my imagination. I moved over and surveyed the room again. I became lost in the blur of people, the only sound I heard was my own sighing and the gentle Italian music playing through a speaker above my head, mingled with the gentle chatter of the public.
"Fancy seeing you here."
I looked to my left to see a small-ish figure silhouetted against the dim lights, but I could make out their white toothed grin and black floppy fringe, the same confident stance I'd noticed from the beginning.
"Pete! What are you doing here?" I asked, standing up. I could see his features a lot easier when more light spilled across his face. He pointed in the opposite corner of the room, at Christa, who was sitting with Ethan in a chair as he giggled.
"Perfect timing." I grinned, as he led me over.
"Lisa! Where've you been hiding all these weeks?" Christa asked, excitedly.
"I've been back home." I told her. "And this week, y'know, getting ready for school and stuff."

"So you and Patrick have fallen out, huh?" Pete asked later on, leaning back in the booth.
"What makes you say that?"
"Oh, please. Since when do you come in here on your own?"
I shrugged.
"I have times when I want to be alone."
"So you're sitting with /us/, why?" Pete asked, waving around him.
I scowled at him as he grinned and I looked away. I wasn't sure whether Pete thought this was all a big joke. Mind you, I wasn't sure myself, either. I sort of hoped it was, that Patrick would knock at my door and ask why I wasn't laughing. In general, I was sort of hoping Patrick would just knock at my door.
"You think you're being replaced." Christa said, watching me. I glanced at her and caught her eye, a strange feeling swept through my stomach. It was as though she was reading my thoughts. I averted my eyes and mumbled a reply as I watched Pete making faces at Ethan.
"Why?" She asked. I had no choice but to look at her when I answered. First, I replied with a shrug. Then, the words tumbled out.
"I just feel like he doesn't need me anymore. Like, he doesn't need a best friend now he's got a girlfriend. And I don't want to be the person who has a problem with his girlfriend. But at the same time, I have a problem with what it's doing to our relationship."
"What's it doing, exactly? I thought he was screening you." Pete said. He said the words as though they wouldn't hurt when spoken out loud. He replayed them in his head at the look on mine and Christa's face, and winced.
"Sorry. I didn't mean it like /that/, you know that." He told me, waving his fork in the air. "I'm just saying, it's not doing anything bad to your relationship, because it's not doing anything at all."
"Pete, that doesn't make any sense." Christa said, exasperated. "Are you not paying attention?"
"Yes, I am." He argued. "I'm just saying..."
"Patrick's avoiding you because he's scared of ruining your friendship." She said, knowingly. "He knows that things will change because he has a girlfriend. Now, he won't be available to hang out with whenever. He has to divide his time between the both of you. And he's feeling guilty that things are changing because he has to do just that."
Pete and I watched her, the words making sense to both of us.
"Sorry, Lisa. But you're just gonna have to face the fact that Patrick's growing up. And sometimes friendship promises crumble when you're growing up."
The walls seemed to close in on me as they both watched me, and I remembered a time nearly a year ago when Patrick and I had established just how good friends we were.
/"Hey, Lee?" Patrick asked, his voice soft as he looked at me.
"What?" I replied, my eyes closed.
"Say yes."
"To what?" I asked, opening my eyes and looking at him as we lay on the grass. The sun was shining onto us as we lay in his back yard, the shadows contrasting one side of our faces, leaving one side in darkness and the other in beaming light.
"Just do it." Patrick said. He held out his pinky. "And do this."
I raised my eyebrow as I reluctantly joined mine with his. I felt like a complete dork, but the grin on his face was laughable as I watched him.
"Now say it."
"Say yes!" He laughed.
"Yes..." I said, hoping I wasn't been played a prank on.
"Awesome." He said, letting our fingers go and lying back on the grass and closing his eyes. I continued to watch him, but he didn't open his eyes again.
"Uh, hello? Care to explain that?" I asked, nudging him.
"You just promised to be my best friend for eternity." He said, with a nod.
"Did I, now?"
"Yep. Best friends until we die. And from then on."/

That night as I struggled with yet another math problem, I stared out of the living room window, at Patrick's house. His bedroom light was on, his car in the drive, but there was no sign that my best friend longer cared. I continued to watch, as if waiting for him to knock on the door or appear at the window.
"You said best friends meant forever." I whispered.
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