"Asshole," I murmured, glancing down at the messages on my phone. Or, should I say, the lack of messages on my phone. 'It's his loss' I repeatedly tried to convince myself, watching the clock on my iPhone read "7:15" in bright lettering. I sighed, sitting down on the bench. If he didn't show up in one minute, he could catch me in the next city over--not that I necessarily wanted him to come. My back was arched and I sat on the slightly damp bench, waiting for the subway. James was an alright guy, he just didn't do well with being in a relationship. As a college girl, there's nothing I wanted more than to leave Buffalo for NYC, and it would only be a short matter of time before I was there. I had already transferred my records and classes to NYU, longing to do something with my life other than hang out with James and his pot-smoking friends.
"Madalena?" James called out, stepping toward me as the clock changed to 7:16; the subway would be there any minute. "I'm not coming with you," he mumbled.
"I figured that much," I scowled, agitated with him. I was going to miss him.
He gave a sad, small smile before engulfing me in one last embrace before I left my past behind, stepping onto the rusted-metal bus that would lead me to my future.
I had fallen asleep for most of the ride, only awoken by a soft voice, asking if the seat next to me was taken. I simply shook my head, scooting over to allow him to sit down next to me. His curly locks glimmered in the early morning sun, revealing his tired, hazel eyes. "I'm Ashton," he smiled through a thick Australian accent, shaking my hand.
I smiled back, giving his hand a squeeze, "I'm Madalena."
"What's your story?"
And so I told him. I told him the unrated story, nothing but the raw truth. I explained transferring over to New York University, how I had developed a 'friends with benefits' relationship with James, and how I wanted to do something with my life besides sit around with the druggies that were slowly ruining theirs.
"NYU?" He finally piped up after my dreadfully quick story was finished.
"Mhm," I mumbled, waiting for a reply of some sort.
"Well at least you will know someone there on your first day," he winked, causing me to beam in response.
"You go to NYU?"
He held his hands out in front of him, almost as if signaling me to stop before I get too ahead of myself. "I don't go there," he paused before continuing, "three of my friends do."
"Oh?" I asked, knitting my eyebrows together. He was awfully cute, and I was definitely hoping it would be the same for his friends. He nodded and the final fifteen minutes of the ride was completely silent. "What were you doing in Buffalo?"
He giggled, almost infectiously, "Me? I went to a Green Day concert. Do you have a dorm?"
My eyes widened as the only thing I hadn't already figured out was, of course, a sleeping arrangement. "No, do you know any good park benches?"
He chuckled for a moment before his laughing sufficed, clearing his throat. "You can't possibly be serious," he flatly stated.
"What's wrong with park benches?" I asked, genuinely offended that he disapproved of my new found sleeping arrangements.
"Nothing," Ashton said, "but there's no way in Hell I am letting you stay on a park bench. You can stay with the guys and I."
"No, really, it's fine," I tried to assure him but he rolled his eyes.
"No, really, I insist," he mocked.
"--And this will be your room," he smiled, gesturing to the guest room. Their apartment was quite large considering there were four of them; although, they did pair up to share bedrooms. "I can't believe that all you brought was a suitcase and a bag," Ashton teased, "I would take that much just to go to Hawaii."
"That's because more than half of your suitcase would be stuffed full of detangle spray for your hair," I shot back. It wasn't my greatest go-to, but it sure did shut the walking-kangaroo up for a few moments.
"Here--as you can see--we have Michael Clifford in his natural habitat," he snapped sarcastically, chuckling hysterically at the profanities Michael spat at him in response. "Mikey, this is Madalena. She's going to be staying with us for a while."
"Hey, it's nice to meet you," Michael said, glancing to Ashton for approval. "Now can I please get back to my game?" He groaned, returning to his video games, snuggling up into a blanket with kittens on it.
Next, I met Luke. He was sitting on his bed--although with his height, he was practically swallowing the full-sized bed--listening to music and attempting to finish his homework. I chuckled at his penguin pajama pants and continued walking, following Ashton into what he called their "practice room".
"And this is our--Oh my God, Calum," he groaned squeezing his eyes shut and covering mine. He was shirtless and making out with a girl who had a lot less on than he did. We slowly opened our eyes, watching the girl shout profanities at Calum, and Calum rammed through the both of us, making sure to shove me especially hard. He chased after the girl, returning defeated.
"Damn it!" He yelled, angrily striding into the room. "Who the Hell is she?" He shouted at me, causing me to flinch and I almost stumbled backward.
"This is Madalena, she's living with us--" but Calum sharply interrupted, anger still boiling through his veins.
"You know what, that's fine, I don't really care," he groaned. "You just better stay out of my way," he emptily threatened me.
I stepped toward him, glaring, "I'm not afraid of you."
"Well, you should be," he hissed, walking out of the room.
I looked up at Ashton who was either red from embarrassment, or anger; I decided on a little bit of both.
"Sorry about him," he rushed to apologize as we walked into my room.
"It's fine," I told him. "But don't think I won't punch him in the face." He chuckled at the fact that I was almost a foot shorter than Calum, and definitely not as muscular. "Here," I dumped the contents of my suitcase onto the bed, "you can help me put all of this away."
He chuckled, complying with my request.
"Hey, I hear there's a killer party tonight," Michael informed us, peeking his head around the doorframe. They both sent me questioning looks and awaited my answer.
"Well, what are you guys waiting for?" I asked. "We don't want to be late."