Onyx lived in upstate New York. She was your ordinary 17-year-old girl, in high school, living in a two-parent household with a younger sibling. But that’s where the similarities ended…
It was Friday afternoon and Onyx was helping to close the bakery for the night. An elderly woman stood at the register waiting on her order.
“Thanks, Onyx. Say hello to your father for me, okay?”
Onyx smiled and nodded at Mrs. Caldwell as she handed over the small box of carrot cake; her dad’s specialty. Onyx loved working in the family business; especially since she was constantly surrounded by awesome pastries made from scratch within the small shop. Her two dads owned the bakery she worked in; it gave her great recognition in her high school career. She was also a total nerd but still quite the social butterfly all due to her best friend, Zayne McKinley.
She could never work up the courage to tell him how much she loved him. They had been best friends since their “diaper days”. Never fell off. They also had some interesting encounters in the past that made Onyx think he felt the same way about her too. She remembered every place they had ever shared a special moment, so to speak:
The first time was behind their houses. There was a lake and a large willow tree that centered itself between their yards. The two were about eight years old at the time. They were laying under the willow laughing about a random event when Zayne asked Onyx to promise him that they would stay best friends forever. Instead of the common pinky promise, he took it upon himself to seal their promise with a quick peck on the lips and a couple of giggles. Onyx beamed from ear to ear as they lay back down and searched the clouds for imaginary shapes.
The second time happened to be a local hotspot: Joe’s Pizza House not too far from their current high school. According to the neighborhood kids the pizza there was to die for! It was Onyx and Zayne’s last year in junior high. All the kids would hang out there. They were out for a walk and it had started to rain; it poured down and the two got caught in it. They ran into Joe’s to warm up and take shelter laughing the whole way there. Getting a slice was inevitable. They ended up talking for hours in a booth and out of nowhere, Zayne leaned over and kissed her. She didn’t know what to do except kiss him back. They pulled apart, he smiled at her, and she blushed before looking down at her palms beneath the table.
Last, and her personal favorite, was in his basement during one of their traditional movie nights. They were watching “Pitch Perfect” (for the third time). Zayne had begun making sly comments about a character from the movie named Fat Amy, and Onyx decided to beat him up for it as an obvious defender of all women worldwide. He mocked her for it, and they ended up play-fighting onto the floor with him ending up on top of her. He looked at her with a strange expression, that she couldn’t quite read, before leaning in to kiss her. It left her stunned, once again, and wondering what this would or could possibly mean.
Onyx leaned against the glass counter. She sighed wondering if there would ever come a time for her to find out if he liked her back or not. What was a girl to do? She started listing reasons for why he could possibly like her in that way. Unfortunately, the first thing that came to mind was a small, unnerving detail. Zayne was the school player who was also in and on-again off-again relationship with Veronica Maize, the Queen ‘B’ of Elton High for three years running. He basically made the poor girl think he was hers forever. Upon remembering these facts, Onyx shook the feeling away and pulled her curls up into a messy ponytail. In the midst of her movement, a pair of hands grabbed her waist roughly from behind.
She screamed and spun around within the culprit’s grasp. Laughter erupted through the bakery as he fell to the floor. Tears streamed down his face as he gasped for air.
“Your face! Oh my go- That... that was priceless!”
Onyx looked down at him trying to disintegrate him with her eyes.
Zayne came over to the store, every day, at closing. She should’ve expected him.
Onyx tried to be angry as she controlled her breathing. But who could stay mad at such a beautiful face? He wore a red and black, plaid shirt with faded black jeans, and timberlands. His sleek brown hair fell around his green eyes. She tried hard to look away, but she just couldn’t, using her glare as an excuse to stare at him longer.
He finally stopped laughing and got up, reaching and pulling her in for a hug.
“Give Zayne some sugar!”
“Jerk! I don’t want to hug you.” Onyx tried to push away, but he only held on tighter.
“I can’t breathe, moron. Let go!”
“My bad.” Zayne immediately let go and Onyx missed the closeness of their bodies instantly. He then placed his arm over her shoulder. She smiled inwardly.
“How about a slice of cake for my journey, maiden?”
She rolled her eyes and smiled at him as she sliced a piece from an Oreo-stuffed cake and placed the portion into a clear container with a fancy ‘S’ on it.
“Maiden, Zayne? Get a life, why don’t ya’!”
“Oh, trust me, I have one. Speaking of which, there’s a party tonight. And YOU are going.”
He went to stab the cake with a fork.
But we have an AP Calculus test in the morning... I got in a lot of hours for studying though... I should be fine. “Okay, fine. Whose party is it, Z?” She became skeptical.
“It’s Jake’s.” He talked and stuffed his face at the same time. “Everybody will be there. I heard Jake’s girl is trying to get Prom Queen votes, so she’s inviting all the grades to his party.”
Onyx rolled her eyes. “Sounds fun. Let me clean up first and tell dad.”
Zayne shrugged and continued to chew.