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Chapter 5

“I should have never told you that I was going to be spending Thanksgiving alone.” I say to Weston who has brought pizza to my apartment.

I was already wine drunk when he told me he was coming over. I had mentioned that I was going to be alone at my apartment for Thanksgiving, he had been shocked, and I had a meeting to go to, also never saw him after.

“Look I was going to spend it alone, too. No one should have to spend it alone.” I didn’t have the heart to break it to him that I had spent many holidays alone before, sometimes I just preferred it that way.

I groan. “Fine.” I stand up from my couch.

“Where are you going?” Weston asks me as he is taking off his sweater, he’s in a T-shirt and jeans. It was weird not to seen him in a suit, this was the first time seeing him in just casual clothes.

“Getting you a drink, you have catching up to do.” I go to my kitchen and grab a new bottle of wine.

I refill my glass and grab a new glass to give him one, too. I used to not be that much of a wine drinker, but I’ve turned into one in the last few months.

“Your apartment is really nice, how did you score an apartment literally on the beach?” He asks me from the living room. I’ve lived in this apartment for a few years, paid extra just to have the bottom floor which has the access to the beach and patio.

“A college friend of mine has parents who own the whole building. I have had no upstairs neighbors the whole time I’ve lived here.” My phone buzzes and I pull it out of my pocket to look at it.

“You have a great view.” He says. I see that it’s Oliver who has texted me, wishing me a happy thanksgiving, and hoped that we could meet up once he was back in Los Angeles again after the holidays.

“Did you find a place yet?” I ask him as I set my phone down and walk over with our glasses of wine.

“I have a few places in mind. Not as great as this place though.” He’s looking at the waves.

“Here you go.” I say and hand him his glass. He smiles at me as he takes it.

“Thank you.”

“How did you get into photography?” Weston asks me. We’re sitting on opposite sides of the couch just talking.

We were both a few glasses in and I was definitely starting to feel it. I knew I would have a wine headache tomorrow morning, but it was okay because I didn’t have to go into work until Monday.

“My high school counselor stuck a bunch of art classes in front of me and told me to pick one. I picked photography at random, I actually couldn’t afford a camera, so I had to rent one from school.” I remember feeling so bad when I realized I would need one, I didn’t want to tell my grandma because it would be a burden on her, so I went to my teacher so I could be dropped from the class. She had loaners available and let me borrow one for the whole year.

“Was it a digital photography class?” He asks. I watch Weston set his glass down on the table and then looked back at him.

“Film. We only ever used film, and it’s my favorite way to shoot to this day.” He nods. “What about you?”

“My grandfather would babysit us often and when I was about ten I found his film camera. He had severe arthritis so it had been years since he’d taken a photo himself, he loved taking photos of my grandmother and they were plastered all over the house. He taught me how to work it and after that I ran with it. Any special occasion where I knew I’d receive gifts I just asked for film, I didn’t want anything else.” That was quite adorable.

“Did you ever enter any contests?” I ask him.

“When I was in college, I only won a few, what about you?” I smile.

“My teacher entered some of my pieces on my behalf because I didn’t want to. I also won a few. One of them actually impressed one of the judges so much he remembered me when I applied to USC. I got a generous art scholarship.” I cried when I received that call.

It covered a good chunk of my tuition for all four years, I wouldn’t have been able to go without it.

“That’s amazing.” He grabs a slice of cold pizza and takes a bite.

“How do you like California so far?” I ask him as I lean back a bit more and sip my wine.

“It’s a bit of a culture shock, have to admit. The people here are a little...” he pauses.

“Odd?” I finish for him.

“For lack of a better word. Everyone here is very laid back, but so rigid about the most random things.” I laugh.

“Like?” I ask.

“The health consciousness thing. I get it, everyone here wants to live for a long time, but sometimes someone just wants to eat greasy food.” That makes me laugh even harder.

“Oh not me, I always look for the greasiest thing on the menu that I can find.” He laughs. “Other than the health conscious people?” I ask.

“I could get used to having nice weather all the time.” I smile.

“Just you wait. We’re in winter, it gets especially nice in the summer. I’ll show you all the great places around town.”

“You will?” He asks. He has that really hot smirk on his face.

“Yes.” I can barely say it, I immediately get up. “I’m getting us more wine, to celebrate the start of a wonderful friendship.” His smirk falters a little bit, for just a second, but I saw it.

He hands me his glass. “To friendship.” I nod and get into my kitchen to get us more wine.

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