I stood in my bathroom trying to style my hair. Yeah, I know, who am I trying to impress? I don't know, I'm just feeling more insecure about my appearance and am being frustrated by how uncooperative my hair is. After I let out an exaggerated sigh, I styled the front of my hair up and left it alone. It didn't come out perfect- there were strands sticking out here and there- but I wasn't going to waste my time fixing my hair. I am a guy and guys don't waste their time with their appearances, unless your are one of my dads who has to look strikingly perfect everywhere he goes. Anyway, I managed to give myself a smile before I left my bathroom looking significantly more decent than I usually do.
As I made my way to the kitchen, I checked the time on my phone to see I had one missed call. Of course, my dads called me since it has been nearly a week and a half since the last time we spoke. I would've called back, but I really don't want to answer the question of what I am going to do. They, meaning my over-dramatic dad, will flip out if they heard I am planning on taking a girl out for dinner. I am not kidding, he would be would be over the moon no matter how many times I say it's not a freaking date. So ignoring the alert on my phone, I grabbed a water bottle from the fridge and took a seat on my couch to wait for the expected knock on my door.
I checked what I was wearing as I continued to wait before groaning loudly. Am I really this worried about how I look? I will be having dinner with Emily of all people and we're just going to get tacos from Rosey because that's the only place I know Emily likes. Well, I'm crossing my fingers she will say yes to have tacos with me. I haven't asked her, but in the morning Emily said she would be coming around this time, so I figured it wouldn't kill me to ask her then. I also planned for us to eat them in my apartment, on this couch, and just hang out like we've been doing for the past week. It sounds and seems easy, yet as the time winds down, I doubt it will be. Sure enough, Emily knocked on my door.
"Hi Blondie." Emily said as she was about to make her way inside my apartment.
"Wait, I was thinking that maybe you would like to, um, have din-I mean you would like to go grab tacos with me right now?" I asked and cursed myself in my head for sounding like an idiot. I wouldn't be surprised if she called me one. Before Emily answered, she looked at me skeptically.
"Are we getting tacos from Rosalina?"
"That's the only place I know of that sells tacos, and the tacos are amazing."
"Fine, we'll get a taco." Emily answered while crossing her arms over her chest.
"A taco?" I asked. The tacos are sorta small, and even for her, one taco is not filling.
"Okay, two tacos." I smiled as I put my hand in my pocket to grab my keys, but after doing so I realized they were still inside.
"Hold on," I held up my index finger and walked back inside my apartment to grab my keys, only I couldn't find them. I started becoming flustered as I searched for them. They should've been on the counter or on the coffee table. They couldn't have disappeared. As I walked down the hall to my room, feeling frustrated instead of flustered, I heard the sound of keys jingling.
"Looking for these, Blondie?" My face grew warm as I stopped in the hall. I slowly turned around and tried to chuckle the embarrassment away. Sadly, it did not work.
"It was sitting on the couch next to your phone. And by the way, your dad tried calling you." Emily said as she handed me my keys and phone.
"That's fine, I don't want to talk to him." She smirked and raised an eyebrow.
"I find that hard to believe."
"Really, my dad is going to talk about stuff I don't have the energy to."
"I think we should go get those tacos now."
"Awe, is he going to make you uncomfortable? I should've answered the phone."
"What? No, don't do that-like, ever. Do not answer my phone."
"Why? You're hiding something. You're always embarrassed and avoid things when you're hiding something."
"Oh, like you're one to talk."
"I have legitimate reasons while you are just a wuss."
"I'm not a wuss. Seriously, we should leave now. I'll drive if you want."
"No, let's walk so we can talk about why you don't want to talk to your dad and why I can't answer your phone.
"Fine, I don't want to talk because my dad will make a big deal out of nothing and ramble, and you can't answer my phone because that would be an invasion of privacy."
"You can answer my phone."
"You'll never let me answer your phone."
"Exactly," I stared blankly at Emily before she smiled.
"You get annoyed way too easily. I abosultely love it. Come on, let's go get those tacos you're so anxiously dying to have."
I wondered why Emily does things and what goes through her mind.
"Okay, so what position did you play on your high school football team?"
"I was the kicker. I, um, never learned how to improve my throw, I wasn't the best runner, and tackling would've been a complete joke."
"So you were the scrawny, weak guy."
"No, I conditioned and practiced with everyone else."
"But all you did was kick the ball and make field goals."
"Well, during practices, I would be placed in other postions. Coach felt that during games, I was better fit as the kicker."
"So basically, he felt sorry for you and didn't want to bench you the whole season, so he made you the kicker."
"No... he just thought... nevermind." I let out a deep breath and placed my head on my knees.
"I'm just kidding, Niall. I'm sure you were a really good football player." Emily tried to console me after her comforting words, but it didn't help. She was right and I had just never accepted the truth.
"I could've been better, though." At this, Emily laughed.
"How, by practicing? Niall, I'm sure you gave it more than your best. You're coach was just an ass that never saw it."
"No, I really could've been better.... but I... I don't want to talk about this anymore, please."
I thought of Dennis and the worst day of my life. I started to think what would have happened if he didn't commit suicide. Would my throws have been better? Would we have played together on the high school team? Would he have gone straight to college like he always said he would, or would he have come out to California with me because he was too adventurous and never left my side, until he commited suiced? I finally realized afterward that I really need to get over what happened and stop thinking about him.
"Damn it, when are the lights going to be fixed?" Emily complained.
Oh, we were sitting in the hall together surrounded by silence and darkness. The power had gone off in the entire building and it just-so-happened right after we left my apartment. We would have walked down the stairs and just dealt with it, but I was afraid Emily or I would trip and fall. Emily suggested to use the light from my phone or hers, but I realized my battery was conveniently low and Emily didn't even have her phone despite her suggestion to use it. And that is why we were stuck in the hallway. We were talking, so that was a plus.
"I'm surpised you didn't freak out when the lights when out." I pointed out.
"How can you be so damned sexist? I've lived my entire life in the shadows. I'm not afraid of the dark. I actually like to think of myself as the 'dark side' of the moon."
"How could you have lived your whole life in the shadows?" I asked too impulsively.
"I.. I never really surrounded myself with people, as you can tell. I already told you how I distanced everyone from me. I just never had the spotlight on me throughout my life. No one has ever paid as much attention to me as you have. If I recall, you are the only person who has willingly spent time with me since... high school. Nobody likes me and everyone hates me. I'm not whining, I'm stating facts." As much as her words danced through my head and made that weird feeling occur, I still coudn't bring myself to believe her.
"That's not true."
"I mean it, I have lived my entire life on my own."
"You can't possibly tell me that you've been solitary your whole life. I am sure you had parents who were there for you and friends."
"They all were just.... I don't want to talk about this now."
Emily was quiet after that and I didn't bother saying anything, too. We just sat in silence- as we sometimes did- enjoying the presence of having the other next to us. Okay, I enjoyed having Emily next to me. My head was still on my knees and I stared at my shoes, barely being able to see in the dark because my eyes suck at adjusting to the darkness. I didn't think of Emily's words as I normally do, because for some reason I didn't care about coming up with conclusions and reasons for her. It was as if sitting here in the dark- by ourselves- I decided that I wanted to be by Emily's side for as long as she would let me.
"Niall, I don't know how much longer we're going to be stuck in here, but promise me you won't get up and leave."
"Why would I do that?"
"I don't know, I just think now would be the perfect time."
"I don't know, I just have the feeling."
"Wait, you're not planning on leaving me here, are you?"
"Of course not, why would I?"
"It just sounds like something you would do, and you brought it up."
"It's okay, just... let's just sit and wait it out."
"I heard your stomach grumble, so I don't know how much longer you have." I smiled, and I knew that even though I couldn't see her, Emily was smiling, too.
"I can wait."
"Niall, if we don't make it out of this, I want you to know that I wish I had a smoke to help endure this." I laughed.
"Fuck, I'm tired of this. What the hell is Jerry doing? The lights should be on by now." Emily complained again.
"It's barely been ten minutes."
"I can't take this."
"You're so impatient."
Silence came again, and not because Emily said to leave her alone.
"This is retarded. I hate these apartments. They're so shitty like the city."
"It could be worse."
"I don't know, what if there was a fire?" Emily laughed.
"Who would be stupid enough to start a fire?"
"I don't know, but it's possible."
"People are idiots."
"Your views on everything is so distorted."
"I'm sorry I didn't become a nun, Niall. El diablo was more attractive."
"It's okay, I'm not apprehensive by muerte."
"That was not funny. You're too much of a saint to be joking about death."
"Then you shouldn't make jokes about the devil."
"I'm sorry. Ugh, this is all just so annoying. I was actually looking forward to getting tacos with you."
"Of course, I enjoy spending time with you and it's nice to do other things besides sitting on our couches talking about random crap I've never told anyone."
"I enjoy spending time with you, too."
"I know that already. But you're not planning on leaving now, right?"
"Why do you insist I am going to leave?"
Emily didn't reply. We sat there for a few moments until I heard her moving. I felt her sitting right next to me, and I don't know why, but my face and neck grew extremely warm. She's never been so close to me before. Another moment went by, and I felt her place her hand on my arm. I'm not kidding, her touch burned me. It caused this weird feeling to surge through me, finding a resting place in my stomach. She has never touched me before. Even if I had wanted to say something to her, I couldn't because my mouth was dry. Swallowing had become harder and I'm sure Emily heard me gulp, but she didn't say anything. As a couple of more moments passed by, everything seemed calm. I wanted the power to be out forever just so Emily and I could sit in the hall, but the damn lights flickered on.