Cheese-sticks

Allysa Elios sat before an almost empty screen.

She had just opened a word document, where she should be writing a story good enough to be published online. It was her turn, since her cousin had taken the first quota for the day - an essay about psychological imbalance. She had to pass something before the end of the day. She sighed heavily. In the screen, cursor was blinking as though to mock her and there was nothing running in her head except for how tired she was from everything that was happening: physically, mentally and emotionally tired.

Then, her mobile phone rang, and a familiar voice made her just made her jump off her bed:

"Hey, 'Lysa… How's it going?"

Allysa smiled.

Aia decided to call again.


"… Here we go again, Aia…"

"Yes, I know. When I talk to you, I feel like I'm talking to myself in a different person…"

Allysa laughed, "Sounds about right," she said, taking her phone off her ear and placing it on the other, "I mean, the situations are similar… It's just the people are-"

"Different, yes," she heard Aia laugh through the earpiece, "It would be scary if it were the same person, 'Lysa…"

This time, the both laughed.

When the laughter died down, Aia started, her voice a little low, "… 'Lysa? There's something I want to tell you."

"Huh? What is it?"

Aia sighed, "I've only told two people this so far… And I think you can keep a secret, right?"

Allysa wasn't sure of what she was hearing. It sounded pretty serious.

"Aia, what're you-?"

"'Lysa… I'm moving."


"It's been a long time, yeah?"

Allysa grinned, "Definitely… Highschool's almost over around here…"

She thought she heard Aia grin as well, "Yeah, I know. Has it been that long? I've talked to Sykes the other day… Everything seems to be a blur…"

"Well, things are in for a turn of events here," started Allysa, tucking a bit of her wavy black hair behind her ear, "Especially because of… You know… That."

Aia laughed again, "Yeah, I'm aware." she began, "You told me that… Start of January, right?"

"Yeah," Allysa replied. She was now standing, walking around in her room, fiddling with photographs and post-its on her wall, "Remember that time when we were having coffee back here... And we had fries with it... With my cousin?"

"Yeah, of course I do," Aia was laughing again, "And to think that were were talking about completely different people and situations back then. It's almost like it happened a long, long time ago."

"It's quite a long time ago," Allysa took a post-it from her wall, "But it's only been about a year, hasn't it? But I guess you're right, especially with the fact about the people..."

Allysa heard Aia chuckle a bit here, "...Besides the fact that we were talking about different people," she began, "We're also with different people... But I can't help but miss everyone there..."

This time, Allysa laughed, "You have a big impact on us, you know..."

It was as though she heard Aia smile, "Really?"

"Yeah," Allysa began explaining, "Icchan uses double straws now - which she got from you. Char has, well, been listening to your music - the kind of music you both listen to... Sykes, well... You talk to Sykes, do I have to further explain?" And she grinned broadly.

"No, I don't think so," Aia laughed, "But... You know, listening to you say that, makes me glad... At least, you know-"

"You're still with us?" Allysa finished for her.

Aia chuckled again, "Yeah," she stated, "'Specially since, I'm the only one in Canada..."

Allysa looked at the post-it in her hand. It purple, and it had her handwriting in it, in large, red letters:

Never Alone.


It was the day before Aia was leaving for Calgary.

Anxious, Allysa sat on her bed, with her phone just inches away from her reach.

And she waited.

And waited.

And waited some more.

'Dammit,' she thought, 'Aia should have called by now...'

It was nine in the evening, and Aia was leaving her house at nine in the morning the next day - wherein Allysa would, in turn, be in school.

She held onto her phone, gripping it tight as she curled up into a ball under her covers.

'It might ring...' she said to herself.

'Aia still might-'

But sleep engulfed her thoughts completely.


Allysa grinned, "You know we're here for you, even though it's not taken literally,"

"Oh, I know that fully well," Aia laughed again, "Remember how I said that during our last coffee session? That I had this strong feeling I'd still keep in contact with you, 'cause you're all, well, there?" She giggled a bit here.

"Oh, yeah," there was a bit of nostalgia in Allysa's voice now, "I remember that coffee session... I think I had two cups then, right?"

"Yup," replied a still-giggly Aia, "With your cousin... And we were eating fries..."

"And talking about different things," added Allysa, with something being implied in her voice.

The two of them burst out laughing, "Okay, that too," said Aia in between laughing fits, "Different things, different people..." Suddenly, there was a voice on her background and they both quieted down.

"Your mom?"

"Hmm? Yeah..." Aia began, "I have to start getting ready for school. And I have to catch my bus..."

Allysa grinned, "It's okay, don't worry," she said reassuringly, "You wouldn't want to miss that..."

She heard Aia laugh one more time, "Yeah, I wouldn't. Thanks, 'Lysa," Aia began saying, "I'll call again. So... Take care."

She couldn't help but smile, "You too, Aia," Allysa said.

"Oh, and 'Lysa?"

"Hmm?" Allysa knew this end of her call.


"Oh, and 'Lysa... This is Aia..."

And one of her friends pushed a girl, about a head smaller than her, forward. She had kind brown eyes, and long, curly brown hair to match. She smiled warmly at Allysa before saying a small, "Hi."

Allysa gave a grin, "Allysa," she said. She then offered cheese-sticks from a small paper container in her right hand, "Want some?"

She and Aia took one each, both of which had some sauce on. After finishing their respective cheese-sticks, they both turned to the container in Allysa's hand and found on cheese-stick with sauce and the other without. Allysa immediately looked at her, "Okay, you go get first,"

"No, it's yours," reclaimed Aia, "You get first,"

"No, I insist," Allysa pressed, hoping Aia would get the one with sauce for she wanted to be kind to a new found friend.

"No, really. It's okay," Aia said, in turn hoping that Allysa would get the one with the sauce for she also wanted to be kind to a new found friend.

The insisting went on for another minute or so until finally, Aia said, "Okay," and she got the cheese-stick without sauce.

"Hey! I was planning to get that!" Allysa reclaimed with a grin, but Aia just laughed at her.

Scowling slightly, Allysa took the other cheese-stick and grinned broadly, "I think we had the same idea back there, didn't we?"

Aia laughed, "Yeah, we did... It's so hard if two people are both nice."

Allysa laughed along with her, "I think now I know what you mean..."


"... I'm so glad I took that cheese-stick a couple of years ago."

--FIN--

©empurple