Author's Note: So, this is the result of a sleepover with FantasticalPlum (find her on ) and Pjiddy, who was the most gracious Beta-Reader in the world. We probably started it around midnight, and finished around six AM. And of course we wanted to share it with the world. Of course.

Sorry if it's crap~! Just kidding, I'm never sorry~!


The first time he had ever seen a woman naked was in a movie he watched with his elder sister when he was twelve. It was one of those artsy movies girls' like a lot, girls her age at least. She was sixteen. She had laughed nervously, and he had stared, stunned.

She was busty, of course. With curly dark hair and olive skin. She beckoned the male lead and he followed, which was only to be expected.

His sister never mentioned it, but it made him curious. Were all women shaped like that, beneath their clothes? He was a late bloomer-even at twelve he paid little attention to girls his age or above. But that B-rated movie had opened his eyes. He was surely missing something.

At seventeen, he was no closer to seeing any woman naked in real life than he had been then. There were magazines, and of course, the internet, but nothing compared to a real woman. At least, that's what he had heard.


The alarm was blaring. He had tried to prepare himself for the harshness of it's repetitive beep the night before, but all the preparation in the world could not ready him for it's brazen, shrill beat. His father was calling for him, at the foot of the stairs, a straight shot from his room.

He stood, pulled on the clothes his sister-Renee-had set out for him, the control-freak she was. He ran a comb through his dark hair. It stood on end, nothing would change that.

He had no time for a shower, but washed his face with cold water in a vain attempt to wake himself.

"Elijah Elias Cohen! Breakfast is ready! I'm leaving!"

"Okay!" He called down, tumbling out of the bathroom and onto the landing of the stairs, "Bye!"

His father made no reply.

Downstairs, the aforementioned breakfast, a bowl of cereal and a piece of dry toast, which he ignored. The first day of school didn't warrant a breakfast in any way. He would probably doze off through the introductions in homeroom and sleep through every class orientation. There was little need of an introduction day for anyone but freshman, anyway.

He took the toast anyway, hoping to leave before his step-monster, Caroline, woke up at his father's absence from bed. He tried not to think about the moaning he'd heard from their room the night before.

"Can I have the food?" His step-sister, Sapphire, yawned. She didn't meet her name in the trashy area, but certainly in the cruelty warranted from such an obnoxious name.

"Yeah, sure, whatever, Sapphire." He sighed, and walked toward the back door to grab his bike-cars were overrated anyway-and he heard her whine from the island in the kitchen, that the cereal was soggy and it was his fault.

He sighed and made his way out of the alley and onto the street. Kids walking and driving to school passed by him, and he pedaled leisurely to school, trying not to wear himself out before he even made it there.

Sapphire had passed him blaring Alicia Keyes' "This Girl is on Fire". Her ride? A tacky pink convertible. It had been a cheap buy (of her mother's purchase, which is why Eli still had no car, because she used all available funds on it) in the means that it did not, in the literal sense, cost an arm and a leg.

She had three other people in the car, two were boys-neither were her boyfriend, Jordan-and one was a girl. One he'd not seen before, because surely, he would have remembered someone so pretty. She glanced at him as they passed, said something to Sapphire, who cackled, and sped up, nearing the edge of the street where he was riding his bike, driving him off the road itself and into a shallow ditch.

Her laugh echoed as she drove away.

"Motherfucker…" Eli stood, dusted his jeans, which were soiled from the loose dirt in the ditch, and picked up his bike.

"Great," he sighed, and looked down on his outfit, which was lazy enough, without looking like he'd never washed it. He would say later that he was run off the road by a semi, instead of a pink convertible. He wouldn't live that down.


Jordan met him outside the school building before the bell rang. The same Jordan that was in a relationship with the evil incarnate that was Sapphire. They had met when Eli's father had just remarried, Sapphire and Jordan, that is. Jordan and Eli had been friends since grade school, but since Sapphire wasn't his real sister anyway, he figured regular rules didn't apply.

"She ran me off the road," Eli said dully, before Jordan could mention his clothes.

"Who did?" Jordan smiled innocently, as if some other woman they knew would drive him into a ditch.

"Sapphire."

"Oh."

"Why are you even dating her?"

"Dude." Jordan gave him a serious face, but said nothing. Eli sighed.

"I know. The walls at home are really thin."

Jordan gave an embarrassed laugh, which sounded more like a choke, but it was affirmation enough. Why was he the only one who seemed to hear anything like that?

The day flew by in a series of post-it notes and folders being jammed with papers he knew he would never look at again. The teachers all tried to make some sort of joke pertaining to school life, but, he paid little attention, not even to give a laugh out of pity to even the most well-liked of his teachers (i.e. the literary professor-English teacher-Mister Konecek.)


Jordan had waited outside for Eli after classes ended, which was unusual, since he normally left with Sapphire or one of his more outgoing friends in place of Eli.

"What's up?" Eli questioned, running a calloused hand through his short dark hair.

"Sapphire left without me. We were gonna hang out. She won't text back, either."

"She's probably with one of her friends," Eli lied, though he had seen her leave with a boy he'd only seen the back of the head of, "She does that."

"Yeah…" Jordan looked around, "I'm so sick of it, though. She always cancels without telling me."

Eli looked up from his shoes, "She does that." He said sincerely. Jordan nodded, looking somehow rejected.

A moment passed, Jordan questioned, "You wanna hang out, then?"

"Nah," Eli replied quickly, "Mister Konecek wanted me to work on that short story project before Christmas break hits-it's better to do it early, y'know?"

"Jesus, you're such a nerd." Jordan laughed, "Text me later-I'll just go home." Jordan's shoulders looked slumped but he hid his disappointment from his face well.


It was a normal Monday night, by all standards. His father and step-mother bickering downstairs and Sapphire yelling over them, accusing them both, but mostly his father, of being incompetent.

It was true, his being busy with the project for Mister Konecek. It was around eight at night when he first started to feel the pangs of hunger. Dinner had not been prepared, and Sapphire had surely moved all junk food to her room, where she hoarded it for parties and to demand more from his father when groceries were bought.

His father and step-mother had settled down and gone back upstairs to their room nearly an hour before he had gotten up to leave. There was a rhythmic thumping on the wall he shared with their room, and he could hear Sapphire on the phone with someone. Jordan, by the tone of her voice.

No, not Jordan. A girl. The girl she was with that morning?

Didn't matter. He walked through the living room and passed Sapphire, sprawled on the couch in only a pair of underwear, folding and unfolding her legs as he passed.

He coughed to stop her, but she just sat up, "Do you ever wear clothes?"

"Do you ever shut up?" She asked him back, "Like ever? Oh my god." She returned to the conversation she was having on the phone.

He left through the back door to retrieve his bike, leading himself to the path he normally took to school. His destination was much closer this time, however.


The All-U-Need was three blocks away, and was right next door to his mother's home. By the looks of it, Renee was there, but his mother, Nora, was not. Probably at work, he thought. He wondered if he should visit his sister, but, having seen her the day before, decided against it in favor of saving time.

The store was blessedly air-conditioned, and was stocked with everything his munchies could ever crave.

Despite his vehicle situation (which wasn't that bad, really, especially in warm weather) his family's situation was well-to-do, so he always had a decent amount of spending money on-hand.

Several bags of chips and a two liter of cheap soda, and he was out, back into the devilishly hot night, heavy and humid.

And who else outside? The devilishly hot girl from that morning.

She bumped into him, stumbled back, looking offended. She looked up, and stopped, however, "Oh. Hi."

"Yeah." He tried to walk past her, but she grabbed his arm, "Aren't you… Sapphire's brother?"

"Step-brother," he corrected, "And very hardly."

"I'm sure I don't know what you mean," she replied quickly, but there was an edge to her voice, a certain knowledge that made Eli's lips perk at the edges.

"I'm sure you don't."

"What did you buy?" She asked awkwardly, trying to make conversation.

"Some junk," he held up the bag.

"Oh, I love root beer," she smiled, "Um, could I have some?"

He paused, "Uh. Sure?"

She took the bottle from the bag (double bagged, courtesy of the cashier) and took a deep swig, "This tastes like ass."

He smirked, "How would you know?"

"How do you not?"

He pondered, "I'm not too experienced."

"Hm. Same."

She leaned against the wall, "So…"

"So?"

"Are you okay? From earlier, I mean." She gave a soft smile, easy and gentle.

This struck him as odd, seeing as how he had thought her to be the one, at first, to advise his step-sister to run him into a ditch, but he stayed quiet.

"It was you, wasn't it?" Her shapely lips pursed, "That she ran off the road?"

"Yeah." He nodded.

"So you're okay then? No broken bones?" She tilted her head, and her long, light brown hair slipped down her exposed, pale shoulder.

"Nah." He tried to sound cool, but he sounded weak.

"That's good." She hesitated, "Can you wait here? While I go buy some ice cream? I'll get you some, too."

"Um. I guess so." He was trying not to speak-to be strong and silent, like a lead male in some sort of movie, but he seemed meek instead. Meek and surprised.

"Awesome. Wait here." And wait he did, until she came out into the dimly-lit outside with two full bags. All ice cream.

"Holy hell." He gaped at the amount, "Why would you ever need that much ice cream?"

"Hm," she turned up her nose at him, "I guess you won't be needing any?"

"How could you possibly eat all that?" He paused, "By yourself? And I waited so patiently, too."

She grinned, "Then you can carry." She handed him both bags and smiled, "Boys have their uses."

"Of course," he sighed. The atmosphere, while awkward, was no longer tense. A pleasant sort of silence fell between them. For about thirty seconds.

"Where should we eat this?"

A plethora of options fell upon him. Was this an invitation to her house? To his? Did she want his answer to be a public place? The park? Or outside? His porch?

If they went inside, they could get to… certain activities-and they'd only just met, but she seemed interested enough to strike a conversation, so maybe she wanted to, you know…-but if they were outside, it would be like a date, and maybe he could kiss her or cop a feel or something…

He decided, "Uh, my mom's house is right there, so, we could…" He trailed off, and she picked right up.

"Oh, good. The closed-in porch. No bugs." She was the one that led them up the walkway to the porch, which's lights were on. Renee's car was absent from the driveway, however. They were as alone as two people could be outside in suburbia.

She was prettier in the glow of a porch light than in the presence of Sapphire. She wore the same sundress she'd worn earlier that day to school. It was short, even shorter when she sat down.

He hated to be a pervert, but there were certain things to notice about a girl. When they're shy, when they're trying to flirt, when they're trying to be strong. She was all of these simultaneously.

She started off with the ice cream, before realizing that there was nothing to eat it with. He hesitated, before offering to go inside and grab some. There was really no need to hesitate, but, it was so difficult to think straight with her around.

Her. He still didn't know her name, and there they were, eating ice cream on his front porch as if they had every night for years.