Title: With or Without

By: Amanda

Feedback: sweety167@yahoo.ca

Rating: PG

Summary: He contemplates what she means to him. She calculates how much she is worth without him.

Completed: April 22, 2004

I'm gonna give it to her tonight.

I've decided.

It's taken me a long time to realise 1). How stupid I've been and 2). Just how great she is.

Let's see…um…one year and one, two, three…five months. Huh. I thought it was longer than that. I guess it just seems like longer, but in a good way. We've been pretty close. In a very platonic way…other than the jokes and the one kiss, but we'll get into that later.

She's not the type of girl anyone would think I'd be interested in. Least of all me. Don't get me wrong, she's cute. Not a jaw dropping girl, but she's cute. She's a listener. A great one. The best girl friend a guy can have actually. Ha ha she hates that, being called the "girl-space-friend" as she puts it. I guess it's from being that for so long for so many guys. But I love that part of her too. It's the only part I've noticed, at least until I was home last.

We had our first party under our belt. Ha ha "Our"…like I have any business calling it ours, but that's what it seems like to me. It was New Year's and what a way to ring it in. She was wasted. Ha ha A very entertaining state for her. This is how all her barriers came down. A few beers, okay, quiet a few beers and she was loose. No, not in that way…sadly. Ha ha Actually, she was sort of…

She kept lying in my lap, staring up at me with her wide, inviting eyes. A special colour. Not the usual 'hazel' girls use to make their eyes special, but a nice blue and grey and even green mix. She was wide eyed and innocent, but with a look that I only now realise was affection. But with her on the bed and 6 others. No, it wasn't that kind of party. Actually I was trying to get closer to her best friend at the time. And I don't know if I was using her for that or not. I know if I was I should be castrated or at least shot. Actually, I think part of me was using her. You know the part; that part of a guy that's a complete ass. Yeah, he was using her like that. But there we were, on the bed, her on her back…and me stupid enough not to get it! She was thinking of me in the way I was thinking for her friend. And yeah, I guess I was using her…all of me was.

I'll make it all better though. I'm giving it to her.

I still can't believe I didn't get it then. I've always thought I was smart when it came to picking up on that. But I guess not.

But the memory of her from that party has been my best so far….or at least at the top. She was happy, almost bubbly. Not the moody girl she had been for so long. She's felt so much pain. I don't pretend to understand it all. I don't understand it at all actually, how can anyone be that unhappy? Either way, she was happy that night.

Hmm, she was giddy actually. She rubbed all the gel out of my hair… "It's so soft" she kept giggling. I will admit that her running her hands through my hair was good. Even though I act like it pisses me off. Nice and playful. And giving me all her attention. I love getting all the attention. And that's when she kissed me. Just leaned in and pressed her lips to mine. It was soft and nice, but strange. Really strange. I wasn't expecting it and didn't want it. At least not then, but now it's all I can think about.

So I'm a little selfish, actually I'm really selfish. But I hadn't put all this together yet. Not really how she felt, or how I did. I am selfish. I was using her.

But giving this to her will make up for everything.

It'll make up for it. The look on her face when I told her about it, she thought it was so sweet. So taken by the very idea. It was great.

I'll give it to her tonight. It'll fix everything.

But what if she doesn't accept it? What if this doesn't 'fix' everything?

I've never let these possibilities leak into my head. I'm an optimist. I'm Mr. Lucky. Everything works out for me, so why wouldn't this? Why wouldn't she?

* * *

I'm not going to take this.

I've decided.

It's taken me a long time to realise this. To realise; one, Just how stupid I've been and two, that I'm worth more than all this.

I've known him for what seems like forever. We've been friends for years, hell we used to talk about everything, all that time. At least it felt that way. I've even slept in his bed. Without him of course, and I always saw that as the problem. I've even gone as far as to kiss him. But that was too much.

He really isn't the type of guy that I usually throw myself at. He's wiry and witty, not the solid build of the asshole that I committed myself to for the years before. No, has the ability to mark me laugh or even smile with the simplest words. Reciting a memory in one of his voices and that smile appears on my face. Putting it in the simplest form, he's my friend. I'm his girl friend, and most likely that term will never be connected.

I really made a fool of myself. We were at a party, New Year's to be exact. And I was wasted. A pretty typical condition for such an occasion but for me it was a defence mechanism. But really, it let me break barriers as well as break them. I could carry on like a fool but at least have something to blame it on in the morning.

But it got pathetic. I was laying all over him on the bed. My head in his lap and drunken lust in my eyes. It wasn't what it sounds like. There were almost six other people there, all of us drunkenly sprawled out on the bed and engaged in various intimate conversations. We were six friends having a good time, and I had to go and make it weird. I had to make another pass at one of my friends. It was a reaction. He was fawning all over my best friend and I had to make myself noticed. I had to stand out. So, drunken on one too many beers, I threw myself at him. There I was laying on my back…but he didn't get it. Or just didn't care.

But it's better now. I've realised that now.

I was pathetic then, but I'll be better now. I'm moving on. It's just taken me too long to wake up and see what I need to do.

I was so pathetic. All giggly and drunk, wide smiles and laughter that didn't mean anything. It was all just alcohol. There was no meaning behind that good mood, it was false and meaningless. But he still took it all the same.

Ha. I was really pathetic. I wouldn't stop touching him. It was his hair really that got all of my attention. I kept reaching up and rubbing all the produces out of it, ruining the style. "It's so soft". I think I actually cooed that to him. And the worst thing was that that was when I kissed him. He looked so cute and accepting, so I leaned into him and kissed him. All awkward and sloppy.

Sad. I was acting like a love-sick school girl. And in a way I was. I was only feeding his ego. That's why he let me, he liked the attention.

Never again. I won't let him keep doing this.

There was a time when I wanted him to fix this. I wanted him to give me that little ring hanging from his neck. Was sure that it would fix everything. Sure, it's a sweet story of giving it to the 'right' girl and all that. But when you've seen him, the ego and using, you lose all awe for it.

He can't simply fix this. It's up to me to fix it, only it will never be the same.

But what if I'm giving up on something great? What if I miss out?

I've never been one to look at the positive possibilities of anything. I'm the girl that everyone looks over. He's just coming over to say we should, and will, remain friends. So why consider anything else? I'm worth more than waiting.