I slowly slide a finger down the sleeve of the thick sweater, the soft material making me second guess putting it on now or later. I hesitate before closing the closet door and looking out the window. The sun was still high in the sky which gave me time to still go shopping for dinner. "Chicken.. rice?.. greens.." I go over my mental list as I slip my coat back on and walk out the door, this time the hallway empty and the men gone. I silently make my way past Dion's door before running to the elevator. I press the button with my knee before counting down from thirty.
The familiar ting of the elevator lifts the weight off my chest as the doors slid open for me to step on. I press the ground floor button with my knees and wait for the doors to close.
"Hold the Elevator!" A man yells and I quickly stick my arm out for the doors to open once again. "Thanks." The familiar smile makes my chest tighten as I nod my head and back into the corner of the elevator. He steps on and watches me closely, "You good?" He leans in as I nod my head quickly.
"Okay?.. Where u goin?" He leans back into the wall and I force myself to stop nodding, "T-T-The store.." I mumble softly and he hums, "You need a partner? I got an hour before I need to be at work." He steps sideways, coming closer. I inch away shyly and shake my head, "N-No thanks.. thank you.." My voice comes out dry and I cough gently to cover it up. He watches me closely, "Okay.." he mumbles softly and the doors swing open. He motions for me to walk out first and I gladly do.
I let out a soft sigh in relief as I walk my way out the front doors. I didn't notice the footsteps behind me until I go to push open the door, "Why you usin ya foot?" Dion asks and I jump, "Oh my-.. " I send him a soft glare as I clutch my chest, "B-Because germs." I mumble softly as he opens the door for me. He nods his head slowly and begins to walk out with me. He mumbles, "You a germ." I can't help the smile on my lips as I shake my head, "N-No you are.. a big germ." I snap back and he laughs this time, his eyes squinting at his full smile, "Wow.. so mean." He teases and I shrug a little, "I'm nicer than you, sir." I giggle as he pretends to be offended, "For a New Yorker, I'm as nice as it gets." He chuckles and I shrug lightly, "Sure." He sends me a gentle glare and I shy away, hiding my pink cheeks under my curls.
The 15 minute walk took no time as we talked about anything at all. He somehow got me to talk about my plants, "And I have this little succulent, his name is Bobby, and he likes water a lot." I hold my palm out as if the little plant was in my hand. He smiles, "I thought all plants liked water." He chuckles and my cheeks burn red as I look at my feet, "H-Hush." He laughs and shakes his head, "What are you here for anyway?" He looks around as I lead him through the shelves of food, "Dinner." I reply simply and he rolls his eyes, "No?!" He sarcastically gasps and I giggle, "What kind of food, stoopid." He smiles as I grab a box of rice, "Chicken, rice, and greens." I count each item on my fingers before holding up the three.
He nods his head, "Nice. I'll be over for dinner." He chuckles as I look at him confused, "Says who?" I frown and he smiles innocently, "Me." He doesn't wait for me to respond before walking out the aisle with my basket.
I huff and jog to catch up to him, "Slow down!" I whine and he looks down at me, "Grow a few inches so you can keep up." He teases and I puff my cheeks, "I'm average height!" I snap and he shakes his head, "5'4 ain't average, boo." He teases and I smack his arm, "Your just too big." I cross my arms and turn away from him. He laughs, "I know." I turn back to him and frown at the look on his face, unable to place my finger on it, "Why you laughing?" I pout as he just shakes his head, "Dont worry bout it."
The pan simmered loudly as I tossed the chicken into the oil. I hop back a little to avoid the grease, "Dang!" I hiss softly and watch the chicken start to cook. The timer beeps loudly as the rice finishes and I quickly put it in a bowl. I turn back to the chicken before the doorbell went off relentlessly, "Alicia! Stop!" I yell over my music and wipe my hand on the rag before rushing to the door.
I unlock the top lock twice before sliding the chain two times and then swinging the door open. Alicia stands there with a stupid smile on her face and her arms full of shopping bags, "What the-?" She barrels past me to drop them all on the floor, "We goin to the club later and you don't got a choice." She smiles and I frown deeply, "I don't like the club.. Too many.. germs." I mumble the end but she ignores me as she fishes through the bags, "I got this for you!" She pulls out a sparkly silver dress with a crazy smile on her face.
I wipe my hands on my jeans nervously and reach out to caress the soft material, "It's so.. loud." I mumble the end and watch Alicia's smile falter, "It's silver which is.. like a sparkly white?" She presses and I hum softly before taking the dress from her, "I suppose... But-" She cuts me off with a finger to my lips, "But nothing! It's happening!" She turned me on my heels as she pushed me towards my bedroom, "Be ready in an hour. Makeup is not optional and you better be ready to loosen up tonight!" My tummy sank to my toes as I just hopelessly nodded along to her ranting.
Small sparkles left trails of silver dust on my fingers as I gripped the thin fabric tighter.