I was right, Luke did drop me again. For the past two weeks, it's been just Jake and I. Except, even he’s been a little distant. Things didn't exactly go back to normal. Luke didn't just drop me, he avoids me completely. Which is hard, considering we have five classes together. We only have separate opening hours. He just wasn't his normal uppity Luke, or his bully self. Everyone saw he was really off. I saw pain, his or mine, either are unexplainable. Things were awkward at home. The weather turned colder, so Ashton started driving me to and from school, along with he and Luke. The rides were absurdly silent.
Today, I guess Ashton had finally had enough of playing things off. We were on our way home from school and the car starts to slow. We pull to a complete stop on the side of the road and he turns around, so he's facing both the passenger seat, where Luke sits, and the back seat, where I am. "I tried to give both of you some space, but just can't take this anymore! What is going on between the two of you?" We both stay silent, and I can just imagine Luke staring out his window, just as I am. "Huh?" he presses, looking from me to Luke and back again. My brother sighs, "Ali?"
I meet his eyes, wanting to cave. Instead, I only shrug, darting my eyes towards the carpeting of the car's floor. There's nothing to tell. We're not friends now, because we never were. I don't know why I feel so hurt right now. I just know I shouldn't be.
"Luke?" Ash tries. I fight with myself, takes all I have, to not look over and watch for Luke’s reaction. "Fine!" Ash growls, turning the car back to drive and pulling back onto the road. I lean my head back against the window, my eyes finding the passenger side's rear view window. My eyes meet Luke's, which dart immediately away from mine. I let out a shaky breath, a silent sigh. A tear slides down my cheek. I don't bother to wipe it away. But why the hell do I feel like crying?
“Lish, you coming?” I open my eyes to see we’d come to a stop in our driveway. Ashton hung on my car door, watching me. I nod, shifting to my feet and shuffling into the house. I trip my way to the stairs. “Oh, and Lish?” I stop, turning to him. “Party tonight. Come, please?” I open my mouth to reply, but he cuts me off. “No buts, Lish. You never come out anymore. Please, for me sis?” His pleading face, how could I say no? I give a small, quick nod, turn, and rush to my bedroom.
I throw my school bag on the floor, no longer giving a care, pull my phone from my pocket, and sit on my bed while scrolling through my contacts. The phone rings and rings, before cutting to voicemail. I sling it on the bed and throw myself on my back with a frustrated sigh. Why won’t Jake talk to me? He’s been quite distant, but if I remember correctly, it’s been three days since I’ve even seen him last. Should I be worried? I can’t really say that I am, just hurt, feeling abandoned maybe? That’s probably the right word to use, abandoned. He’s the only person I have, and he knows that. Best friend or boyfriend, I need him to be there. Yet he’s not, even though he promised he’d always be there.
Calm down, Ms. Clingy, he’s probably just practicing with his band. But they practice on Tuesday and Wednesday nights and usually all day on Sundays. Today’s Friday. We usually send those Friday nights together, but we haven’t in more than three weeks. Was Ashton right? I haven't realized until now just how much depression I’ve shown these past few weeks. What did it have to do with really? Was it because Jake was acting weird or because I was wrongly missing Luke?
Two nights, he slept in the same bed as me only two nights, yet every night since, I’ve felt nothing but his absence. I would lye in bed missing him and end up calling Jake in an attempt to feel something, something that’ll make me feel better, or at least anything that would make the slightest bit of since for me to be feeling. But when I’d call, I’d get nothing but endless rings, followed by voicemail. Just like tonight.
Double the pain. Double the absence. Double the hurt inside. I’ve been crying myself to sleep ever since. And it makes no sense! Who am I missing? Jake or Luke? What’s worse than feeling the pain is being unable to pinpoint the source. Even I don’t know why I’m upset. It’s worse, feeling the pain and not knowing which boy is at fault. How am I mourning the absence of two boys at the same time? It just doesn’t make any sense…
“Knock, knock,” I hear a familiar voice say, followed by the squeal of door hinges.
I sigh, sitting up and trying my best to wipe my tears away. “Michael, knocking and announcing yourself are two different things.” He shrugs, sitting beside me on the bed. I shift a little bit away, arms crossed over my chest. “What do you want, anyway?”
I feel a hand come and rub the exposed part of my face. Still, I don’t look at him. He’d know I was crying whether he saw or not. It was me who couldn’t face him.
“I’m worried about you, Ali. We all are. What aren’t you telling me? You used to tell me everything.” I sigh out in pain at the sound of his voice and at his word choice. “Ali…”
“When have you ever cared? You and Ash have always let Luke rip on me. What’s changed?”
“You did.” I look up at him just as he stands, walking to the door as he continues to speak. “We’re leaving for the party in an hour. Ash says you’re coming, so you’d better get ready.” Then he leaves. And I’m left alone yet again. So I get in the shower to mask the pain. This time, I check the port to see what CD is in there, and make sure to play Five Seconds Of Summer’s.
An hour later, Ashton was calling me down to meet them outside. I skip down the stairs in a black dress that flowed out above my knees. The back was zip up and was bare at the top. It showed off about half the skin back there. I’ve never worn this dress before, but really liked it, and thought the occasion was exactly appropriate. I carried my heels down the stairs and out to the door. I raced to meet up with them, and nearly trip. I’m caught quickly and set on my feet, but they hesitate to let go. I look up and meet Luke’s fierce, but obviously pained blue eyes. “Hurry up, you two.” His arms slide away and we walk side by side, silently. As we walked, I couldn’t help but take glances sideways every now and then. Every time I did, I’d see quick movement shifting the opposite way.
It was a short walk to the party, and even shorter time before you could start hearing the booming music. There was flashing strobe lights, loud music, and a lot of teens. There was talking, laughing, dancing, and kissing to be seen anywhere you looked, really. And more intimate things going on in the shadows. The boys disappeared right away in different directions. Leaving me alone to walk around and find a safe place to hang for...however long I'd need to. These kinds of things were not of my scene. I'm only here because my brother wanted me here. And he left me the second we'd arrived. What was the point again? I don't even see one...
I stumble into the kitchen where less people were, but a lot of cups I knew to stay away from. I know enough about parties just from my brother coming home drunk enough of times. I didn’t do drugs, Ashton either. But he did drink, and that was something I have no intention of stooping to. Seeing there was nothing for me here, other than just another secluded area to find make-outs, I headed back into the main hall. I was aware that people, not otherwise occupied, would stare at me. I didn’t fit in with this crowd, never have, and they probably have no idea who I even am. Just some randomly awkward chick with purple hair, mind you, standing alone at a party. Not to mention they’ve all seen the interviews and know I am, and all that I am to them, the sister of Ashton. “One of the hottest guys in school”, according to half the girls in this town.
I walked around awkwardly as the party went on. I would occasionally run into one of the guys. They would try to talk to me, but slurred terribly and were too drunk to remember they were having a conversation with someone in the first place. They’d pause, try to think for a sec, then shake their heads and stumble away. When they'd come back to me, I'd try to get them to leave, but even when drunk, I couldn't deny their no's. Calum wasn’t too bad, I’d imagine, but I’ve mostly only seen Ashton and Michael. Who were totally wasted out of their minds. Then there’s Luke, who never came up to me, but was near me quite a lot. Not near me in a sense like he knew I was there, but like he just kept showing up everywhere I’d look. He would be with a different girl every so often, either grinding up a storm or making out like their every beings depended on it.
If we’re being honest here, it hurt. I don't know why, but there was just something about seeing him with another girl. The trashy type of girl, to say the least. But I mean, another girl implies that I care it’s not me. And why would I care about that? I don’t want that to be me. I mean, I’ve certainly never thought about it, anyway. I can't pinpoint my feelings for him anymore, can't get the file in my brain straightened out. But that's just the thing. I shouldn't even be feeling anything towards him. We hate each other, absolutely without a doubt hate each other. But that was before. I still know he hates me, but I can't say the same, can't say I still hate him. I don't think I do, because I doubt every tiny detail that has to do with him.
More importantly, I need to put into question the feeling scoursing through me right this second. I hate the sight of those girls, of him being with them. I wanted to rip their heads off, take Luke away from them. And the thought made me both smile and recoil. And the way he keeps glancing this way, like he was waiting for something to happen. That doesn’t necessarily mean it has anything to do with me per say, but still kind of made me think he was like, testing me or something, trying to intentionally piss me off. There’s no doubt in my mind though that he’s gotten drunk off his ass the moment we’d arrived. He probably didn’t even know what he was doing, and would enjoy it either way.
Fingers balled into fists, nails digging into my palms, I force my gaze away and rush back into the kitchen. One drink won’t hurt, right? Sure, I’ve never had alcohol before, but one isn’t going to completely destroy my every being. Just take some of the pain away, and maybe help me think straighter, if that made any sense. Because, at the thought of Luke, I certainly felt drunk. Maybe this would somehow reverse the vicious cycle coursing through my veins.
But after I chugged the first one, I found myself reaching for another. I forced my hand back, retreating from the kitchen once more. Not into the main hall, but down a hallway. A lot of noises could be heard, no doubt coming from the many bedrooms in the mansion sized house. I don’t really know what I was looking for, just turning down hall after hall, until I came across something that made me stumble, then turn around as quickly as I had in the kitchen and run right back to home base. Something bad enough to cause myself to allow that second drink. Then a third, and a loss of counting after that one.
Jake, my boyfriend, my best friend, the only person I thought I could without a doubt trust, with another girl, doing the unimaginable. It hurt, made me rethink everything, made me realize just how much I truly would never compare to the girls both of those boys were so clearly all over. Drunk or not, it could never happen. They would never truly belong to me. I think tonight just proved that. The fact that my boyfriend was actually “my boyfriend,” just lying to me this whole time and never really cared at all. But I couldn’t blame him. I only blamed myself. I hated myself. And that’s why I decided to lose myself. My whole body pounded, all of my surroundings blurred. Everything became lost to me. I did it. I lost myself.
This was my first time writing a scene like this, so sorry guys! You have Ria to thank for inspiring this, though. She wrote her idea, and I incorporated it in.