Had it been anyone else, I probably would've bolted up the basement stairs as the infamous Coca-Cola bottle pointed towards me. The looks of attentiveness that crossed their faces made me almost laugh out loud. This moment could not have been more surreal, I'm sure.
But hadn't I known this was going to happen? This was why I always avoided parties, but somehow Michael was now getting me to come to my first. I knew from the moment he dragged me into the passenger seat of his beat-up 1997 Ford Taurus that I was destined for some type of public humiliation. Some might've claimed that my spidey-senses were tingling, but part of me knew that it was mostly due to the steel grip he had me in.
The clichés were setting in and however much my stomach churned or my heart pounded, I knew there was nothing I could do; how do you tell your best friend that you feel something more? Pseudo-incest was probably something Michael wanted to avoid.
Nine years of being attached at the hip after the incident in third grade had sealed our fates; we were best friends first and foremost. Would it be nauseatingly predictable if I claimed to remember that day like it was yesterday? Probably, I mused, but despite the overwhelmingly fuzzy feelings I attached to that moment, it was still unclouded and unmistakably clear.
A blonde-haired boy that I had known since kindergarten was riding his bike to school, a daily occurrence. For shits and giggles, let's say that the sky was an overwhelmingly blue shade, with clouds of bunnies and tea cozies floating in its infinite abyss.
Daydreaming, as per usual, I didn't take notice of the black treaded tires screeching to a halt before me. I didn't even realize that Michael was anywhere near me until an enormous mass of metal collided with my skull.
Would it be too movie-esque to describe the blinding hospital lights pouring down on me, or the constant beeping of the machines I was a prisoner of? Yes, I agreed, that would be disgustingly clichéd.
Instead of waking up to the peaceful sight of my friends and family crowded around my hospital bed, balloons and flowers adorning the bedside table, I was roused by a pair of pasty hands, dirt collecting under his fingernails. The boy was muttering words I had only heard Daddy use that one time he dropped a bowling ball on his foot, and I wondered where Michael got the balls to use such profanities.
I remember dazedly laughing at my nickname for a boy's — cue girlish squeals — penis. Oh, how daring I was!
I could feel Michael wrapping his arms around my waist and dangling my own arm around his shoulders as he half-carried my disoriented form to the nurse's office. There, she discovered that my injuries were too severe for a school nurse to manage, so she taped some gauze on my profusely bleeding forehead and handed me a lollipop after calling for an ambulance.
"I've never been in an ambulance," I told Michael, who had yet to leave my side.
"Me neither," he agreed. "It's going to be exciting."
"Exciting?" I deadpanned. "Did you just run me over with your bike so you could ride in an ambulance?"
"Hey, if you would've watched where you were walking, I wouldn't have run you over!" His otherwise pasty skin looked remarkably decent when it was flustered pink, I decided, then and there.
The ride to the hospital was a bonding experience for us, I always thought, giving us the opportunity to marvel at all of the many gadgets inside the ambulance. I never told a living soul, but in my confused and disoriented state, I found it highly amusing to steal a latex glove from the box in the ambulance as a souvenir. I'm sure I still have it somewhere, lodged behind old pictures and notebook paper in a drawer of my desk.
From then on, Michael took it upon himself to look after me, always asking about my headaches and wondering out loud about whether or not stitches itched as much as they said. Once the scars were healed and the headaches went away, I still found him constantly by my side. Some of the other kids in our class would tease us for being such close friends, claiming that we were going to catch cooties, but I was never one to believe in such foolish things.
During middle school orientation was when I first started to notice that Michael was, indeed, a boy. When I saw the other boys that would be going to the same school as us, I started to see him in a new light; maybe he would become a football jock or a ladies' man. Where did that leave me?
"Am I a girl to you?" I asked suddenly, while we were working on our homework in the spring of seventh grade. Somehow, algebra problems and vocabulary words were the furthest things from my mind.
"I'm pretty sure you are a girl, Kat." Michael rolled his eyes, I remember, which was something he always did.
"Well, obviously," I replied, biting my lip. "But do you see me as a girl?"
He turned away from his Latin homework to face me intently. "Sure I do, Kat," he said, like it was that simple. "You're my girl."
You're my girl. I knew I would never forget the way he said it, like it should've been obvious.
Now, five years after those words were spoken, I still found myself trying to make them true. I knew there was a part of me that would always belong to Michael; he claimed most of my heart. Last year, we spied on our mothers scheming about wedding plans, and I swore that when I looked back at Michael there was a slight blush adorning his cheeks.
It was the same blush that I found staring back at me from across the circle of sex-crazed teenagers. Somehow we had found ourselves being pulled down to the basement minutes after we had arrived at the party, and I instantly knew that I should've stayed home.
I swear my heart skipped a beat when Michael's spin landed on me. Sometimes I feel like I have a clinical problem; maybe my heart is faulty or something. That would explain why I've been attracted to my best friend for more time than is healthy.
"Alright!" Someone clapped his hand on Michael's shoulder, and even from where I sat, I could see the excitement radiating off of those around us. It wasn't everyday one had to play 'Nervous, yet?' with their best friend.
A blonde girl I recognized from my math class laughed beside me, "I don't know if they even have to play; Kat looks pretty spooked already!"
At this, my face flushed a deep red hue, and I forced myself to look at Michael; he looked equally uncomfortable with our current predicament.
"No fucking way, dude," a guy from my History class responded. "I gotta see this!"
With that, Michael and I were pushed to the center of the circle where we both sat down facing each other, our ankles tucked neatly beneath us. He shifted awkwardly, all the while keeping my gaze.
"Chicks first!" the jock bellowed, clapping me on the back.
I swallowed nervously, bringing my palm up to cup Michael's cheek. "Nervous, yet?"
He chuckled, "No." He rested his right hand on my side, just below my rib cage. "Nervous, yet?"
I tried not to reveal my silent shudder. "Nice try," I smiled. I shifted daringly so that my left knee was in between his. Cockily, I asked, "Nervous, yet?"
I extremely enjoyed the look on his face as he closed his eyes and steadied his irregular breathing. "Not yet," he responded. My best friend made me feel increasingly warmer as he let both of his hands rise so that they were still touching my ribcage, but the tips of his fingers were able to graze the underside of my breasts. "Nervous, yet?"
I was now highly aware of the people around us, all watching with amazed faces, each person sucking in their breath as they watched us touch each other in ways we never had before.
"No," I said, honestly. I could barely feel his fingers pressed against me through my shirt, and it was merely the thought of him touching me in this way that made me nervous. I wouldn't crack just yet. I started wrapping my arms around Michael's neck, bringing my face closer to his. I leaned forward and rested my lips gently against his left ear, breathing provocatively into him, "Nervous, yet?"
"No, Kat. Good one, though," Michael joked. He removed his hands from the sensitive area of my stomach and lifted them to the tops of my shoulders. He dragged them along my neck and dipped them into my hair, emitting a sigh from my mouth. I hadn't realized I closed my eyes until I felt Michael's hot breath against my lips, whispering, "Nervous, yet?"
My eyes shot open to find him watching me, the people around us forgotten. I found the position we were in highly alluring, with our hands around each other's necks and my knee getting dangerously close to his most sensitive area. I left our lips mere centimeters apart, and instead, focused on what I knew would get a response out of him. I shifted closer to my best friend, hardly believing that I was in this situation. I watched his eyes as my knee gently pressed against him, though I was severely distracted by the heat rising through my body and the way I felt him growing stiff against me. His eyes were smoldering as he gazed back at me, waiting for me to utter the words, "Nervous, yet?"
"A bit," he responded, still slightly dazed from what we were doing to each other.
I laughed outright at this, removing my gaze from his. I looked to the people gathered around us, surprised to see more than the original fifteen or so we had started the game with. "Does that mean I win?"
Before they could respond, I felt my face being pulled towards Michael as he slammed his lips against mine. The sensation of his lips moving against my mouth overshadowed the shock I felt at finally kissing him. The feeling of his nose applying pressure to my cheek was a surreal sensation, and I promised myself that I would never forget what it felt like to be doing this, knowing that I may never get another chance.
I put all my energy into kissing him back, shoving my lips against his in what was sure to leave bruises on us both. Surprising me to no end, Michael nipped at my bottom lip, asking for entrance to my mouth. I hesitated, realizing that we were getting dangerously close to botching our friendship forever. I didn't know if I would be able to go to school without Michael being the one to pick me up in the morning, or if there would ever be another person I would be able to confide in.
When I felt his lips moving against mine, all of my apprehensions floated out of the metaphorical window. Maybe he really does want this, I contemplated. Maybe this is right for us.
I opened my mouth to him, letting us fully explore each other. I could hear the catcalls and whistles around us, but I couldn't bring myself to care about what our peers thought. The way we twisted our tongues together made me moan into his mouth, and I could feel him smiling against me.
I lifted myself onto my knees and grabbed Michael's face in my hands, twisting his blonde hair between my fingers. He let his hands rest on my hips, as he stayed in the position he had been in during the game, sitting on his ankles.
"Kat," he groaned against my lips.
I continued kissing him until he started to push gently at my hips. "What?" I gasped between kisses.
"Does this feel wrong to you?"
I felt like I had been hit over the head with a club.
I dropped my hands from where they rested in his hair and sat back down on my ankles, still facing my best friend. I liked the way his lips were puffy and red from what I had just done with him.
"No," I stated simply. I shook my head, trying to squeeze back the tears that were prickling my eyes; I would not cry in front of him anymore. Michael had seen me at my best and my worst, from when I cried from laughing too hysterically at something witty he had said, to when I sobbed into his shoulder when my parents revealed they were getting a divorce. He had been through it all, I realized. Everything in my life that had any substance behind it I had gone through with Michael. "It doesn't feel wrong."
The pure joy radiating off of him surprised me to no end. "Thank the fucking lord!" he hollered, laughing.
He pulled me back towards him and laid chaste kiss after chaste kiss on my lips.
"Oh my god," he groaned, the smile still beaming off of him. "You don't understand how happy I am that you feel that way."
"What?" I gasped. "Are you shitting me right now? Am I being Punk'd?" I looked frantically around the room, but all I saw were the smiles of those around us, watching us as we sat on the basement floor. I suddenly realized that I didn't even know whose house we were at.
"No," he laughed. "If anything, I think I might be dreaming."
My smile was almost painful, pulling at the corners of my mouth and reflecting over my entire face. I forcefully grabbed Michael once more and pressed our lips together, both of us smiling contagiously as we kissed.
He pulled back, abruptly. "How long?"
Despite the lack of complete sentences, I knew exactly what he was asking; Michael and I were always on the same wavelength. "Since the first day of middle school." I smiled, "And ever since."
"That's it?" He laughed, incredulously. "I've been pining after you since third grade!"
"What?" I shrieked, standing up abruptly and pulling Michael with me. I looked around the room, as if for confirmation.
"It's true, dude," a basketball jock stated. "I've seen the way he looks at you. That's some true love shit, right there, man."
"Do you believe me now?" He asked, tilting my head up to face him.
I stared into his eyes, still stunned out of my wits. "I wished you would've told me sooner."
"I didn't know how you would take it," Michael mumbled.
The apprehensive look on his face made me weak at the knees, like all those cheesy romance movies. I pressed my lips against his once more, realizing that I had kissed my best friend more times than I could count tonight. "Does that give you any idea?"
Michael breathed heavily, his breath mixing with mine as our foreheads rested against each other. "A bit," he smiled, now genuinely happy.
Author's Note: So, this morning I decided that I was tired of working on chapter stories-- a fluff-based one-shot is just what the doctor ordered. I'm looking forward to your reactions! (:
Just to let everyone know, (because not everone does this), I reply to each and every review that is sent my way. I truly appreciate that people take the time to tell me their thoughts, because your feedback honestly helps me as a writer.
As for the swearing in this one-shot (since it's been mentioned in many reviews), it's meant to be used in the way a high schooler would speak.