I kissed him.
It was an abrupt kiss. My hands held his face, not too forcefully yet with enough passion to express my sincerity.
You could have heard the raindrops falling on the green roof at our yard where we stood. I don't know why but usually romantic scenes always happen when it rains. You know.. The boy tells the girl how he loves her, the girl plays it hard to get, then he suddenly kisses her while they are all getting drenched in the rain. No one tells how their clothes felt so wet afterwards to the point they caught a cold, or if their love really lasted. Maybe it was just the rain that cast a magic spell and made those two to finally realize how much they love each other after all the struggle they had. Yes, 90% of struggle, 1% of cheesy love and the rest goes to the credits at the end of the movie where the audience starts to get up from their chairs and leftover popcorn fills the lightened floor. Not sure why I always end up watching those movies, maybe because it’s with Taylor that I manage to bear it. My sweet childhood friend who has a really soft spot for rom-com, or what I call it “romantic junck”, "junkie" for short.
Well, I wish my rain scene was the same as those when Ryan shoved me off from my grip and our lips parted away.
"Jane, I can't". He shook his head with a sulky face and used his right sleeve to clean his lips. "You really are a great woman and kind but this won't work. Sorry".
Those were my crush words. Awkward.
But what hurts the most were his last words, 'this won't work'.
Like seriously? You could have just said, "I don't like you" or just finished the sentence with your stupid rejection. I'm not some project that you can 'work on'. Not to mention that sleeve cleansing he pulled off. It makes it seem as if you hated my kiss, or that I have abused you with my defiled lips.
Yep, that's it, my first kiss ended with me being labelled as a ‘Kiss Abuser’.
‘A kiss abuser project’, if that's even a thing.
You didn’t seem to hate it last month at our freshman party when you hooked up with Samanta on the terrace. She fcking dated Mark at that time, yet here I am, a single pringle, getting rejected right outside my house.
I took a few steps back and distanced myself from him.
This didn’t go as I have been playing in my head over the past weeks.
Some of the drops that poured from the edge of the roof now fell on my left shoulder and got absorbed by the red jacket I borrowed from the entrance knobe, just before going out to escort Ryan.
I guess some of my mom's clothes really come in handy sometimes, and also it was a cute jacket that matched my too glossy lipstick, which I have put too much cause Ryan’s lips were still smeared with a leftover tint of red.
The thought of it didn’t bother me this morning when I looked over the mirror. It sounded amusing, as if I could mark him as mine. What a stupid thought.
"Hey, are you ok?"
Of course! I feel almost the crappiest I’ve ever felt.
- "I'm fine, it's fine". I snickered a bit, now seeing only the decked floor, and that little beatle that’s taking cover from the rain. Anything was better than looking at his face.
"So we are good yeah?"
I clenched my hand a little bit, "..Yep".
My voice is cracking and shaky. There is so much rain around, yet my mouth is dry like I was in the desert for 4 days without any water.
"Ok cool. I didn't wanna make it seem awkward between us you know, especially since we sit next to each other at class..".
He stopped for a bit and then started chuckling.
"I was afraid you might not want to continue working on our group assignment".
Oh.. Right. I totally forgot about that math assignment, and here I thought I already had it worse. I guess I was wrong.
Before I could answer another lie, some phone vibrations came from my jeans pocket to interrupt a situation that already seemed done.
It was Taylor.
Such a life saver.
I mastered some courage and raised my head, this time feeling less empty.
“It looks like my friend is just about to arrive. So..”
Go! Get the fck out of my sight, cause I can’t hold my cracking voice anymore.
“Oh cool, nice. Then I will see you at class.
And again, sorry..”.
Jane, hold it, you can do it. Just a bit longer…
Ryan put on his hoodie and made a small run over the rain towards his parked car, the green gate at the entrance shut behind him with a little force.
I crouched down.
“Finally, I can cry”
As salty tears fell off and sobbing voices filled the space, another vibration came from my phone.
“Hey, I just saw ‘douchebag’ leaving from your place. He took off so fast and bumped into your neighbor's garbage.
I think some juice got spilled on his shoes, lol what a moron”.
While calming myself from all the crying,
I replied back:
“Wow srsly? lol #carma_is_a_bitch”.
A stupid laugh came from my mouth as I cleaned my snotty nose.
Only Taylor can make me laugh when I feel like crying.
Another reply came:
“I have a feeling that something happened. I’m just about to park the car.
I’m coming over so don’t come out,
it’s still pouring rain”.
*Shit, no don’t come, my face looks like a mess”.
“fck it”, I stood up and walked past the safe spot of that little beatle. Rain started pouring on my combed hair, hopefully enough to reach my eyes and mask my tears.
I made a small run towards the spot where Taylor always parks until I could see that silky brunette hair and blue, unsurprisingly grumpy, eyes.
I whispered to myself, “yep someone is mad”.
“What the heck are you nutch?! I told you not to come out”.
“Look, Even your jacket is completely drenched”.
Gosh such a mommy, yet cute.
Taylor leaned over me, offering quickly a blue umbrella that could barely fit two grownups.
Oh no, I know that look. Plz don’t say it..
“What’s up with your face?”
Stupid blue eyes, why do you always look through me even when I don’t want you to.
“What are you talking about?”
Let’s play dumb and pass this quietly.
“Your eyes are watery”.
“Oh really? But it’s just the rain that wet my face”.
“Jane.. Your eyes are puffy like that time when Sir Pudding died”.
Sir Pudding was my pet Hamster when I was 10yo. I've given him that name because when he wobbled, his round body looked like a vanilla pudding. At that time I was a huge pudding lover so don’t judge me, not to mention I couldn’t eat puddings for a whole month to honor his death.
I never got a pet afterwards.
“What really happened?”
What am I supposed to say, that I got dumped a second ago by the dude you always say he is an asshole?
I just stood still and looked down, again.
“It’s Ryan right?”
I looked back at Taylor’s angry face.
“This fucker… Next time I see him I swear I’m gonna punch him in the face”.
With that small fist? I hope not. But I would lie if I said that didn't make me feel comforted.
“It’s ok, I’m better now. So can we please move on from that question?”.
“Ok.. But I still wanna know what’s going on so you better answer me later”.
“Fine. I promise”.
“So… instead of standing here outside your gate like two weirdos, how about we go out? My treat”.
“Well I did wanna go watch that gore movie that came out this month, the one with that gorgeous actor I told you about.
“Urgh, what’s the point? I’m sure they will all die at the end, including that ‘gorgeous’ actor”.
“Hey, you promised we will go watch it together after that ‘junkie’ we saw last week”.
I chuckled, this time it felt more genial.
“Your face screams ‘I’m gonna throw up’ all over”.
“What can I do, you know I hate bloody stuff”.
“Then nevermind. I’m actually not in the mood for this”
“Wait, for real?”
“Yep, I just wanted to tease you”. I turned over to face Taylor as a mischievous smile formed on my mouth”.
“I’m not sure if I’m supposed to get mad or feel relieved”.
“Anyways, let’s get inside for now. I feel like Socks after shower”.
Socks is Taylor’s dog. After you will see some of Taylor's ex-socks you will understand why we named him like that.
“Yeah you do give off that ‘wet dog’ look”.
“I’m going..Get your pretty ass moving”.
I was the first to enter the house, Tay came right after me with faster steps, already halfway through the kitchen, maybe to make us some warm tea like always.
I took my jacket off thinking to put it back on the door knob, but then I noticed a small puddle starting to form beneath my hands.
Yeah, forget that. This needs to go to the washing machine.
“Tay, I’m gonna take a quick shower, I’ll be back in 5 min”.
“5 min.. Right.
“Shut up, I will be quick”.
“Nah, take your time. By the way, I’m making us some camomile tea. You want 1 spoon of sugar right?”.
As Taylor was asking, I was already walking up the stairs on my way to the bathroom.
So I yelled back, “Put 2 spoons. This girl needs extra sweets".
I said, with a small voice that I’m sure no one could have heard except me.
“Hey Jane what did yu.. Oh she already went up. Weirdo.
Alright! I’m gonna make something extra sweet so she better stay as much as she needs in the shower”.
There was steam covering all the surrounding mirrors.
I removed my bathroom robe and was about to get dressed,
“I feel clean now. Both inside and outside”.
I could finally let it all out in the shower, those were 15 min of good snotty cry.
Mmm..? I smell something sweet.
There were some noises coming from downstairs. Where I would probably guess came out from the kitchen.
“What are you doing?” I asked as I walked down the stairs.
“Oh wow that was faster than I expected! Let’s see.. Around 20 min I would say? Not bad”.
“Ok I can’t believe you actually put a timer on me”.
“Pff..No! Haha. This is for baking, you said you wanted sweets so I made some cookies, I even made enough for your parents when they return from work".
"Oww that's sweet of you".
"I know right? Btw, I don’t care how much it takes you to shower as long as it doesn’t affect our county's water supply, which is very nearing a concerning lvl thanks to you”.
“Ha ha, quit the joker you are. Are they ready yet?”
“Hm. Give me 2 min. You can sit on the couch for now, pick whichever movie you like, I will be back with all the stuff”.
“Whichever movie I want, right? Gottcha. No take backs”.
“I’m starting to regret that I said it.. And no, no take backs”.
“Oww this is gonna be fun!”.
While I moved to the living room I started humming an old song Taylor used to play for me on the guitar, a dark time when I still had my braces on and Taylor had a few shades of purple dyed hair which never made a comeback, although I still think it looked pretty. Everything looks cool or pretty on this person.
Omg, am I actually in a good mood right now? I mean, that’s great. But isn’t that too fast? I got rejected only one hour ago… Anyways, I better forget about this for now and pick a movie.
Afterall, a good mood is better than a bad one.
I picked up the controller,
“Let’s see.. We got Ping Pong, We, Paws, The Witc- “I’m bringing over all the snacks so make some space at the table”, Taylor yelled over from the kitchen.
“Where was I.. Ah right. The Guest, Under The Light, The Beards, A ghost with a candy, The We.. wait candy? lol that’s such a sweet ghost - ”Did someone say sweet?”
Taylor came, pointing a warm mug next to my hand.
“I put the extra sugar like you asked”.
I held it with both of my hands, it was very warm but I don’t know why, I felt even warmer inside my chest.
I took a small sip,
And it’s super sweeeet! Taylor might have overdone it with the sugar but I still like it.
“Wow, drink it slowly or you will burn your tongue”.
“Aww.. I thinge I bormned idh”, I said as I was sticking my tongue out.
It wasn’t that bad but I felt like I could get extra spoiled around Tay, cause it’s.. Well, Tay.
“Silly. Wait I will bring you some ice”.
“Don’t rum”. And of course me saying that didn't really help cause in less than 6 seconds Taylor was already carrying over a few ice cubes for me.
“Here. put it in your mouth, it will calm your burn”.
Like a reckless kid, I jugged 3 cubes into my mouth.
Holy moly, I know that’s the concept of ice but that’s fcking cold!
“Mm”, I nodded while I was eyeing one of the cookies that had extra chocolate toppings on it.
As my hand was about to reach out for it, those familiar pinkish lips started moving again, asking me a question I didn’t want to be asked about.
“Good. Now that things have calmed down a bit, can you please tell me what happened with Ryan?”.
I knew that question would boomerang me but I didn’t think it would happen that soon.
“Jane, I know that I promised to not pry too much but this idiot made you cry. I can’t hold my nerves anymore, it makes me nuts, I even burned my hand while taking the tray out from the oven just thinking what he might have done to you”.
I looked immediately all over my friend's body and there it was, a red bruise on this gentle hand.
I feel like a really bad friend right now.
The last thing I would want is to hurt Tay.
“How.. I didn’t even hear you yell.. Does it hurt, wait shouldn't we put some ice on it? Wait, I think we got an ointment in one of our kitchen's drawers".
I was about to get up but then, an un-bruised hand held my blue shirt lightly without stretching it too far, which is a relief cause that's my favourite shirt that Taylor gave me at my 16th bd.
“It’s just a small burn, let’s not make a big deal out of it”.
-”No! I was only minding my own business, not caring what’s going on around me while you tried to make me feel better like you always do”.
“It’s really ok, I will put some ointment when I get home”.
“Listen. I will tell you everything, just let me put something on that burn for now”.
The gentle hand finally left it’s grip on my shirt. I guess my facial expression was really firm. No one can win over me when I get serious or angry, maybe I was more suited to learn at a law school instead of medicine, but still, I don't regret it one bit.
I moved quickly to the kitchen, taking a small rounded container from the drawer that had a light green colored cream in it.
“Found it. Now show me your hand”.
Looking closely, that wasn’t such a big burn but it should get treated as quickly as possible or a mark will remain, something that I would prefer to never happen on this milky gentle body.
I took some of the cream and started to massage it on the bruise.
“Ahh? that doesn’t sound like ‘a small burn’ to me. Just try to stay still, I promise to be gentle”.
“Now you really sound like a medicine student”.
“Haha I know right? But please try not to be my patient again”, I pointed a small affectionate smile.
“What are you talking about, those are the main perks of having a doctor as a friend”.
Stupid, I will treat you as much as you want. I just don’t want you to get hurt.
“So.. Jane, tell me.
What did this bastard do?”
My hand stopped moving for a second,
someone is cutting right to the point.
“He did nothing wrong. It was me that pushed my feelings on him and expected him to return the same feelings to me”.
“W..Wait. What! You confessed to Taylor?”
“Hm. Sort of? Just before you arrived I kissed him on the lips and he pushed me away.
My first kiss ended up with me getting pushed away, ugh this makes me feel crappy again now that I remember it! Just so you know, it’s because of your stupid movies that I decided to pull that move”.
As I was blabbing, I noticed my buddy was quiet, too quiet.
“Hey, what's up with you? You look gloomy. Though I can understand, I can’t believe I wasted my first kiss on that dumbass that can barely solve a middle school’s level math problem.
Fck I’m gonna request to move out from the group project".
“Exactly. I don’t get it.
This dude is an asshole, why did you kiss him?”
“Hello? Did you listen to anything I said?”
“Yes and I still don’t understand what’s the reason. Did you like him that much? You never told me any of this even though we are best friends. What's so great about him?! It’s not like he was the only guy on earth, you even had a few decent guys that confessed to you. Hell, there was even a hot girl that tried to hit on you at last month’s party so why HIM?!”
“Wooa.. Let's chill ok? Here take some tea, it’s gonna get cold”.
I leaned my hand to the other mug, it was orange, unlike mine that had my favorite color - Blue, like my shirt.
"As for your question. There isn’t a special reason. He was just good looking, and likable by others so it made me get attracted to him"
“Ok I can get that he is attractive, but do YOU like him?”.
There was a sudden pause, I caused it. Not sure what to reply back.
"... I don't know. I guess I just liked the thought of us being together or getting some extra attention. I mean, his smile is cute too. And he is well built?"
"Haha.. well built? It sounds like you are trying to convince yourself. So what if he is well built? My neighbor has a great figure even though he is 40. Should I go ask him out? Maybe offer a kiss?”.
“Ok you are being a jerk right now”.
“Look, I’m sorry but that’s exactly what I want you to understand. You don't sound like you really have some special feeling towards him, you just went for it because of some physical features he has and because you cared how society will see you guys.
I've known you for more than 10 years and I can’t believe you cared about those stuff, that’s not like you. And maybe that's one of the reasons why I'm angry at you”.
"Maybe you are right and I didn’t have romantic feelings like I thought I had for Ryan but should I remind you that YOU were the one that always said that with time people can develop feelings and fall in love".
- "You remembered that?".
- "So you remembered that and used that thinking on him? Why him!?"
"Why are you so angry?
You know, since the beginning of our conversation you seem kinda off. I know that I screwed up but you can be a better friend and react nicely like you usually do, my feelings are hurt right now and now it's not the time when I want your nagging"
"Cause you are my friend and I need you to be here besides me!
*A sudden tear fell onto my lap*
Why do I always start crying and getting emotional whenever I am getting mad?
"Why are you getting angry when I'm the one who got rejected?!"
- "I'm not even sure myself. But maybe because it's you! I'm angry that stupid muscle head couldn't understand how amazing you are. But I'm more angry that you made a move on a guy that couldn't appreciate you".
There was a mumble coming from Taylor that I couldn't hear clearly.
"Why can't you see me..".
"Sorry.. You are right. I should have appreciated myself more but instead went for a guy that never once looked at me only cause my friends thought he looked right".
Let’s not cry anymore, I don’t even think I have enough water supply in my body for another tear.
There was a strong warm hug that embraced my body as I was sniffing and smudging my leftover tears.
A small smile came on my lips, feeling appreciation for having such a good friend next to me.
After calming myself a few minutes, I leaned back and started laughing.
"Seriously that kiss even tasted funny! What that dude has put in his mouth?
I'm really such a stupid girl.
- "A breath like that would never come from me while kissing such a cute girl".
"Oh I'm sure about it. You are charming and caring. And on top of that, you bake sweets whenever someone is down. Damn I wish I can meet someone like that too"
- "But you are the only one that I bake for"
“...Really? Well it doesn’t matter. My point is that any person that won't take you would be a dumb ignorant"
- "Then I guess you are both dumb and ignorant".
I’m a what? Is that a new sort of insult? That doesn’t even make sense.
"What.. Did you say?".
Taylor noticed my confused face and stared right into my eyes, a really intense stare that made my heart shook a bit, ‘The comeback of the marbled blue eyes’.
Those eyes continued to stare on me, this time accompanied with a clear yet forceful voice.
I have been standing here besides you all this time, yet you can't see me even after all those years. So let me ask you a question.
If you can't see ME although you know how great I am, what does that make you?"
My brain is crumbling. That situation was too much for me to process along with my recent rejection. But after a few seconds, some thought came to my mind. I'm such a - "...total dumbass".
My shocking words that came out abruptly from my mouth almost made me miss this rare look I saw for the first time on my childhood friend’s face. A mixture of relief, happiness, and peace have been portrayed by those gently glittering blue eyes and freckled cheeks.
Why didn't I notice it before? Is it really ok for me to think that way after all those years? This is my best friend we are talking about. There would never be a second or third ‘best friend’, there is only one Timon to this Pumbaa, not that I’m saying I look like a pig.
There is no going back from this.
This time I stared back, feeling more fluttered than this morning when I was thinking how to confess to Ryan.
- "Glad you finally see me".
The sun already started to come out, and we were just there.. both sitting on the couch like we always do, but this time with new feelings surrounding us.
Taylor was having a mischievous smile and reddish ears.
"How cute", I whispered to myself.