I'm not particularly fond of the smell of apple cinnamon. It's just something about the strong notes in that cinnamon that disturbs me. I mean don't get me wrong, I like the smell of apple pie just as much as the next girl, but the artificial smell of apple cinnamon is too strong for me. I think the distaste of the smell came from a long childhood of going to my grandmother's house. If her house wasn't filled with an aroma of the delicious meals she loved to make, it smelled strongly of apple cinnamon. Only the cinnamon smelled stronger than the apple, which really played games with my sinuses. The smell of cinnamon was so strong in her house it always felt like you just sniffed pepper or something. Eck! I just really hated the scent of apple cinnamon.
This is probably why the smell did no justice for my mood when I sank into Lesley's cold leather couch. You could tell her couch was brand spanking new by how stiff it felt under me. Lesley was one of the lucky ones to get a newly renovated dorm so everything in her dorm smelled new. From the laminate wood flooring in her kitchen to the imitation shag carpeting in her living room, her dorm looked and felt like a brand new dorm.
"So…you slapped him?" Lesley asked, giving me a confused glance over her shoulder. She was in the kitchen pouring some dried red beans into a big pot of water to be boiled for dinner.
"She slapped him." Savannah echoed sounding just as confused as Lesley, only she sounded more surprised than anything.
"Wait I'm confused, he told you he loved you right?" Lesley swiveled on her heels to face where I was sitting. She leaned back on the kitchen counter with her hand under her chin.
"Yes!" Savannah exclaimed sounding more frustrated.
"I thought this is what you've wanted for three years though? Why would you slap him?"
"He screwed my sister for three years secretly, and then broke my heart, and he expects me to take him in open arms after his pitiful declaration of love. 'I think I love you too' he said it like he was doing me a favor by loving me back! Does he honestly think I would take him even after he screwed my sister? Even after he led me on to believe that he wasn't in love with me for a whole seven days, a whole 168 hours, 58 minutes and 12 seconds. Really, what kind of girl does he take me for?" In the process of my venting I had kicked off my pink slipper boots and had my feet propped on the coffee table.
"But he said it though." Lesley inputted.
"And you still love him…" Savannah added.
I glared at the both of them, growing more and more frustrated. Why in God's name were they on Kennedy's side? They were supposed to be my best friends, not his. They were supposed to be on my side, agreeing with what I said.
Lesley came and plopped in the spot next to me. "Look, we're not saying we don't understand why you're upset-"
"But he actually said what you wanted him to say, and I think your being a little dramatic about this." Savannah finished.
Lesley gave her a displeased look for cutting her off. She cleared her throat, "As I was saying…" she trailed off to give Savannah a pointedly annoyed look and continued. "But slapping Kennedy did not help this special situation at all. I can only imagine how angry he is."
"Yeah Indi, you really need to learn how to control yourself when you get angry, because you turn into the girl Hulk." Savannah added.
My frown grew deeper. I hated to admit it but I had a horrible history with physical violence. I couldn't help it, but for some reason when I got angry I felt the need to hit someone or punch something. I'm not easily angered; I just have a teeny issue with hitting people or things when I'm mad. I'm generally a calm kid, but I have my moments of violence. In grade school I found myself in three fights, two in school and one outside of my front lawn with Natalie Hawkins.
"Remember that time you whooped Natalie's butt in front of your house for calling you fat? That was hilarious!" Savannah burst into laughter.
Lesley and I both frowned at her, as she rolled over in laughter on the couch. She immediately sobered once she noticed the mirrored looks she was getting from both Lesley and I. "Okay, okay, this may not be the best time to walk down memory lane." She admitted.
"Okay maybe I am being a bit dramatic about being so upset about him letting me think he didn't feel the same way for a week, I get that maybe he was scared or didn't realize his feelings until he lived life without me. But you guys aren't getting what I'm so upset about. I am mainly frustrated with the fact that he has been screwing my sister for three years. Three years! How do you screw a sister for three years, but you're in love with the other? That is not being over dramatic." A flurry of emotions throttled me into tears. I was actually shaking with tears. I, India King, was actually crying tears. Lesley and Savannah looked at me like I was some kind of freak show, they were so shocked. I couldn't blame them I was shocked at the tears myself.
I've never been much of a crier in my life. Don't get me wrong, I'm not some emotionless robot, I have feelings. But I seriously think that there's something wrong with my tear ducts, because I rarely ever shed tears. When I am in the deepest of hurt and pain I can never seem to evoke a tear. A single tear never sheds when someone or an animal dies in a movie. I didn't cry when we thought my dad wasn't going to make it in the car crash two years ago. Even in my fat girl days I never cried over a single fat joke that I was teased with, I just sort of channeled my hurt into anger and my anger channeled into the kickboxing classes that resulted in my significant weight loss. But after sitting on the side of father's false death bed, I was just convinced that I was incapable of tears. I can honestly count on one hand how many times I've cried in my life time, my baby years excluded.
"You're really shaken up about this aren't you?" Savannah asked softly, rubbing my back soothingly.
"I've dreamed of this day, the day that Kennedy would tell me that he loved me too. I couldn't imagine that he would say it like he did today and under the circumstances that we are in right now. He's been sleeping with Ivory for three years, three freaking years, and he decides to tell me that he loves me after being involved with her for that long period of time. I just don't understand why I am still so in love with him, he's the only one I want. I know he's not right for me, I know he's not the type of guy I deserve. But I am so stinking in love with that guy. Even though he's nothing I thought he was, I still just can't forget the memories that we've shared and the way his eyes melt my insides when I see him. I just can't get that feeling for anybody else. I don't know what to do, I am completely lost. I don't ever want to see him again but I do at the same time. What do I do?" I'm pretty sure my words were coming out in undetectable sentences, because I was practically blubbering. But the way Lesley kept chanting "I know" after every other sentence I said and the way Savannah's brown eyes started watering really assured me that they understood every word I was saying.
"Indi it's going to be okay. Kennedy's a douche for sleeping with Ivory if he knew how he felt about you. But what if he didn't know how he felt about you until the day you told him you loved him. We're assuming the worst when maybe the best could be the circumstance. You just never know." Savannah's optimism about every single thing never ceased to amaze me. I immediately started to feel some relief at her idea of things.
"Yes maybe Savannah's right Indi, you'll never know until you actually talk to Kennedy. Talking to us right now is not really helping your situation." Lesley's logical answers were the perfect balance to Savannah's words of optimism.
They're personalities were so opposite, but they're advice to me perfectly reflected how much I needed the both of them in my life to balance me. I was so grateful for great friends like they were.
It was as if Kennedy could hear our conversation at that very moment because I got a text from him. I unlocked my phone, almost missing the 8 missed calls. I checked my missed calls, only to see that they were all from my big sister, Ivory. I ignored Ivory and checked Kennedy's text.
Kenny Ken: Hey we need to talk. Meet me for dinner at the UC?
"No" I replied out loud to myself then started to tap those two letters in reply.
"What are you doing? I just said that you need to talk to him, this is the perfect time." Lesley sounded just as surprised as Savannah looked at my reply.
"So… I don't feel like talking to him right now. I'm still mad; I don't want to risk giving him another slap in the face. I am going to talk to him though just not right now." I reassured Lesley, sending the text.
"Okay, do what you please. Just don't bring the same sad face to my dorm tomorrow. I hate seeing you cry." Lesley sighed.
"I don't think I have ever seen you cry and that's saying a lot because we've known each other our whole life." Savannah's eyes drifted off into the distance as if she were trying to conjure up a memory of me in tears.
"Don't tell a soul about this." I warned to the both of them, alarmed because I knew how loose Savannah's lips were.
They both gave out dry laughs, "We won't" they both said in unison.
After more serious talking about my situation, the conversation eventually drifted to Lesley and her nasty roommates. Like me, Lesley had to share her dorm with three other people. Our dorms at Ridgewood University were set up like apartments, except for the freshman dorms. Each dorm had four separate rooms and two bathrooms with a full size kitchen and living room. Lesley hated her roommates; they never did their dishes and always left food sitting out in the kitchen. They also left the living room dirty and the roommate Lesley shared a bathroom with, left the bathroom completely disgusting. Since Lesley is the biggest neat freak I know, her complaining about her roommates was always a hot topic coming out of her mouth. I couldn't blame her; it would drive me absolutely insane to room with three dirty girls.
After another hour in Lesley's dorm I decided it was time for me to go back to room. I had a paper to write and two exams to study for. For once in my life I was grateful for all of the school work that was piled on tonight, because that meant that my mind would be occupied. The less I had to think of my ambivalent feelings for Kennedy the better.
The rest of my day had flown right past me. I never did get a text back to Kennedy after my rejection so I didn't as much as glance at the clock when 6 o'clock came around. I was too enthralled into the world of my essay on Booker T. Washington and my Frank Ocean music playing softly in the background that I didn't even hear anyone knocking on my front door.
So you only imagine how close my heart was from leaving its chest when Kennedy threw open my door dripping wet with this livid expression on his gorgeous face.
Oh boy, I really should have listened to Lesley earlier about meeting him at six. If looks could kill, I'd be dead right now.
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