“You're horrible Josie!" I screeched climbing out of the frigid water. I barely managed to pull myself onto the bank. My clothing hung on me like a weighted blanket.My teeth chattered uncontrollably and my entire being was numb.
I looked up towards the ledge that I'd been pushed from moments before. Only to see my best friends running towards me in horror.
"I didn't mean for you to fall, don't hate me! Are you okay?" She burst out in one long stream.
Benji shot her a death glare as he wrapped his jacket around me and pulled me close to him. "I'm taking her to the lodge."
Shivering, I tried my best to keep up a steady pace. I could hardly move now and a blue tinge had begun to creep over my fingers.
Josie let out an exasperated sigh as she noticed.
"Abby! Your dad is going to kill me!"
"Yeah, especially if I freeze to death...." I laughed.
Benji grabbed my hands and inspected them before picking me up and carrying me the rest of the way to the lodge.
We snuck through the back door hoping no one would see me looking like a drowned rat.
The plan seemed to have worked until I looked up to see Chief Maddox Brand, Benji's dad.
"What happened to her?" He sent a sharp look between Benji and Josie as the question hung in the air.
He raised an eyebrow awaiting an answer.
"She fell into the lake." Josie stammered out.
"I see," Chief Maddox said as though he wasn't sure if he could take her at her word.
"I've got this dad," Benji said as he pulled me closer to his chest and began walking towards the stairs.
Moments later we were in his en-suite on the third floor of the lodge.
He sat me down on the toilet lid and turned on the shower.
"I'm getting the doctor to come take a look at you." He almost seemed angry as the words came out.
I felt horrible about the whole ordeal. The last thing I wanted was for Dr. Andrews to have to come.
"I'll be okay." I said....still shivering.
"You need to get those clothes off." He demanded as he walked towards me.
I leaned away from him and nearly fell off the seat.
"I-I can do it." I stammered.
"Abby come on, I'm your best friend. It's not like that. You can't even move." He slowly came towards me knelt down in front of me. He tossed my soggy boots into the corner of the room before pulling my jacket and blouse off. My heart pounded so loudly I thought he'd hear.
'He's my best friend,' I tried to remind myself, ' this is NOT sexual in any way.'
I swallowed down my nerves as he slid my jeans off, and I was left standing in my bra and llama panties.
He let out a small chuckle as he noticed my choice in undergarments, "You would." He shook his head in disbelief as he turned to walk out the door.
See NOT sexual at all. The first boy to ever undress me, and he laughs. Maybe that's worse than my best friend actually getting turned on by me.
Minutes later, the feeling slowly began to return to my fingers. Steam had filled the room as the scalding water trickled down my skin.
I knew I couldn't stay in much longer. The doctor would be waiting for me.
I quickly towel dried my auburn hair and threw on the clothes Benji must have placed in here.
I winced at the thought that he had come back in without me knowing, but he was no where to be found now.
After Dr. Andrews had checked me out, he assured Chief Maddox that I would be 💯 % by tomorrow night.
He looked at me one last time and let out a sigh before shaking his head and walking out of my room.
I only now noticed Josie sitting at Benji's desk.
I flung myself backwards into the pillows.
"Thanks!" I mumbled in a sarcastic tone.
"You're welcome!" she said as though she'd actually done something that needed my thanks.
I sat up and looked at her dejectedly. "For what?"
"Oh.... you know.... for forcing Benji to realize his feelings for you..." She smirked.
"I hate you... ya know." I rolled my eyes as I looked at her brushing her long blond hair.
"You love me and you know it." She shot back with a laugh.
"Ok! But if I still have blue lips for tomorrow night I'm going to hate you for real!"
I was getting to stay at the lodge all weekend for Benji's "coming of age ceremony".
He and Josie along with several other kids from school lived up here at the lodge. It was practically a ski resort.
And Benji's father was Chief, well at least until tomorrow night.
Then, that honor would be passed on to my best friend.
I would have given anything to have grown up here at the lodge. It was beautiful, and the surrounding redwood forrest was simply breathtaking.
Of course, I'd spent lots of time here growing up, but it never got old.
I hated the thought that this would be the last time I'd be here for the next 6 months.
I was starting school at CSU on Wednesday and wouldn't be back home until Thanksgiving.