An excerpt from my short story, Adelle & Brandon: Friends for Life:
Adelle finished her chicken wrap and placed her dish in the sink. Her cell phone rang the second she turned off the faucet. She wiped her hands on her shorts and pulled the phone from her back pocket.
It’d been a week since the night he came over, boohooing about being dumped by his latest girlfriend. Adelle hadn’t spoken to him. Not after she woke up that morning in an empty bed. Not even after she longed to ask him whether he’d kissed her. Besides, he’d left a folded up piece of paper on the coffee table that said he needed time. He probably wanted space to figure out how to reject her without breaking her heart too much. She cringed each time she mulled over what her actions revealed to him. Anticipating the possible emotional fallout was just too much. She swiped the phone to answer but the “hello” struggled and failed to make it past the humongous lump in her throat. Why now?
“Are you okay?”
“Yeah,” she said in a quiet whisper. Her face flushed. She’d never lied to him before. Hid stuff from him, yeah, but never uttered a blatant lie, like the time she saw his mom flirting with the principal at the beginning of finals week. He’d already had a tough time keeping his grades up. She just couldn’t tell him until summer break.
“Um. Are you busy tonight?”
“No.” Perhaps, she redeemed herself with that answer. Her night was totally open although she may not be ready to see him yet.
“Good. You want to go dancing?”
Everything stopped, her breathing, the hum of the fridge, even the ticking of the kitchen’s clock. She squeaked out the response, “Like…on a date?”, and wanted to take it back the moment it escaped her lips. Sure, they’d gone to movies before, but never alone. Parents, classmates, or current neighbors down the hall always joined them.
“Yeah, a date. Want to?”
What the heck. Might as well dive in. “Sure.”