"C'mon, Addison. Are you really one of those people?"
"Hey. My parents told me never to play with matches, and I have to listen to them."
"Since when did you listen to your parents?"
"Fine. You have a point. Hand me the matches."
I reach my hand out and Michael places them in my palm. I whip around and turn my back to him, kneeling down near the fireplace.
"Remind me," I say, knowing that he is practically breathing down my back.
"Why am I lighting a match?"
"I dunno." Michael replies as he kneels down next to me in front of the fireplace.
"Cause it's fun, and we're both bored."
I scoff and say "Whatever. Just be super quiet. My parents are literally upstairs. Deal?"
l light the match and dangle in front of both our faces. We sit there idly in awe and the flame dies out. I toss the match in the fireplace and pull another out. This time, I pull a few gum wrappers from out of my pocket and ball them up. Placing it in the fireplace, I strike another match and hold it under the crinkly ball of wrappers. The papers ignite and I look over at Michael, who seems very entertained. The fire illuminates his face, making him look mysterious. Looking back over to the already dying crumble of paper, I pull out another match. I run it across the side of the matchbox, but my clumsy fingers released it and the match flew. I look over to the direction of where the match flew, and see nothing. I pull my shoulders up and drop them down, thinking "Whatever."
Jumping up from my kneeling position, I turn to Michael, still looking at the diminished ball, and say "Want some toast?" He immediately stands up and walks towards the kitchen, not even looking behind him to see if I was following. But, I was. I swing past him and head for the cupboard, grabbing the loaf of bread and pulling it out. Tossing it onto the counter, Michael retrieves it and opens it up. We place the bread in the toaster and instinctively climb the middle counter in my kitchen, facing each other.
Michael asks "Wanna watch a movie?"
I nod and we both slide off the counter. We head into the living room and Michael plops down on the couch. I sit down on the floor and examine the movies that my family collects in the bookcase. About to pull one certain movie out, I smell something odd. I look behind me, expecting Michael to be doing something. But he is just sitting there, admiring his holy jeans. I stand up, glace at him, and mutter "Do you smell that?"
He looks at me oddly and replies "Smell what?"
I continue sniffing and the scent seems to be getting stronger. Slowly walking to the entrance way of my home, Michael stands up and joins me, the smell getting even more stronger than it already was. I recognized the smell, it was smoke. But I put the fire out..
My heart starts beating fast and I could swear I heard Michael's heart beating as well. I turn the corner and, to my horror, the curtains that hung beside each side of the fireplace are aflame; and it isn't just the curtains that are burning. The flame is crawling up the wall, spreading through the room. Hell, there is fire on the plush carpet. Too afraid to even scream, I stand there in fear, my feet cemented to the floor.
Everything that happened next seemed to be happening in slow motion.
The fire spread fast, faster than how it seems in the movies. The only thing I could think of at the moment was my family sleeping upstairs. Upstairs. I look towards the staircase and run towards it, determined to wake up my family. The flames are seemingly chasing me. No, that's not fire. That's Michael. I'm halfway up the stairs, but he reaches his arm out and pulls me back down.
"What are you doing? I have to go get my mom and dad!"
I twist my arm out from his grip and I continue sprinting up the stairs. Michael is by my side, but when I look down the stairs, there is nothing but flames. The smoke is billowing from the staircase, and the air is getting thick. I find it hard to breathe, and I start wheezing. I go in the direction of my parent's room, but the door is locked. Scrambling, I kick and scream and scratch at the door. Nothing from the other end. Not even the slightest sign of life came from my parent's room.
I start to get light-headed, and I feel woozy. Michael shakes me and practically drags me toward the window. Unable to control my emotions, I do anything possible to get out of his grip. But I can't, I'm getting too weak. I glance at my parent's door once more before I give in. Michael opens the window, and the fresh air fills me with relief. But that relief only last for a few seconds, for the moment that the window opened, the fire reached toward it hungrily. My face is burning from the flames, not even 5 meters away from me. My whole body is getting weaker and weaker with each breathe I take. How can Michael possibly stay calm? Michael..
I look towards him, unable to speak, afraid to do anything else, in fear that I might spit out my lungs at him.
"We have to jump."
He says, gesturing, toward the window.
I nod, unable to do anything else, my mind fogged from all the smoke.
He grabs my hand we both swing over the windowsill.
And we let go.
From the second floor.
Of my burning house.
With my parents no where to be seen.