I hold Ashton's hand tightly, the tears streaming down my cheeks as I look down at the blue and white floor tiles. I finally gain the strength to look up into Ashton's red eyes. "Don't cry Elli Belly." He says, cracking a small smile. I smile and laugh a little. I love it when he calls me 'Elli Belly'. I stand on my tiptoes and kiss him deeply. His forehead rests against mine as he speaks. "I'll call you as soon as my flight lands. I'll make sure to tell your mum you love her and to tell Calum and Michael that you miss them." Ashton explains softly and slowly to me.
"I'll make sure to call you tomorrow after my classes and I'll make sure to read one of your notes every day on the phone with you." I whisper with a smile forming on my lips. Yesterday, after dinner, while Ashton was in my room he wrote notes on sticky notes and put them in a jar. He wrote enough to last until the day I leave to come home for Christmas break, and then he'll write more. I have to open one every day while I'm texting, or on the phone with him.
Ashton smiles and kisses me again softly. "I hid one, you'll easily find it tonight." He smiles. "You can tell me when I call you after the flight, okay?"
"Okay." I smile and stand back on flat feet. I turn to see Chloe and Luke separating from a hug too. I silently go over and give Luke a hug. "Keep an eye on him for me okay?" I say to Luke. Luke and I agreed that he would watch out for Ashton if I watch out for Chloe. I always take care of Chloe but this is different. Being long distance and all puts a tool on all of us and it sucks, big time, we have to keep an eye on each other just to stay sane ourselves.
"I will, and keep an eye on her for me." Luke says. "I'll miss you El."
"I'll miss you too Luke." I sigh sadly into the hug.
As Luke and I separate I hear the announcement of their flight go across the speakers. I bite my lip hard and quickly walk over to Ashton. "I'll call you." He says, hugging me tightly. "I love you so much."
"I love you too, more than anything. Keep your apartment clean, I'll be there in a month." I say, smiling.
"I'll keep it clean, I always do." He laughs a little. I giggle softly and plant my lips against his. "Goodbye Elli Belly." He whispers against my lips, his voice cracking.
"Goodbye Ashton." I mumble softly against his lips and kiss him deeply one last time as I feel tears coming in like a storm. I land back on the heals of my feet as he waves, a tear falling down his cheek while he walks away. I wave back, biting my lip and Chloe stands by me as we watch them walk away.
"They'll be fine." Chloe mumbles. "Right Elli?"
"They will be." I say, fighting back the tears. "They'll be fine."
"Can we go back to your dorm and eat popsicles and watch Netflix?" Chloe asks."You don't have class until late tomorrow and I don't have class at all so can we?"
"Yeah." I say and we both turn around. I stare at the blue and white floor tiles as we walk towards the exit of the airport.
I squeeze my eyes as I get brain freeze from a popsicle. Chloe laughs and almost chokes on hers. "You got brain freeze again? Damn Elli." She laughs hysterically. I laugh as the brain freeze goes away. I've gotten it at least five times now, I don't know why.
I laugh and look at the clock its 9pm. Chloe has to be back at her dorm by 9:30. "Its 9 Chloe, do you have to go?" I ask.
"Dammit yeah, the lady comes around at 9:15 to check if people are there." She says, sliding on her shoes. "Thanks El, text me before class tomorrow." She says as she grabs her jacket, steals another popsicle from me and heads out the door.
Ashton should be calling soon. The flight left at 5:30. I sigh and find his hoodie laying on the floor by my laundry basket. He always throws his hoodies all over the place. I laugh slightly and slide the hoodie on. As I push my arm through one of the holes I feel a piece of paper. I push it out to see a blue sticky note on the floor. I pick it up and look at it. I smile, realizing it's the one Ashton hid. He knew I would put his hoodie on before he would have the chance to call me so he hid it in there.
I read it aloud but silently to myself. "Elli, I'll be calling you after the flight and I hope this hoodie reminds you of me. I left a bar of my soap in the shower." I laugh. He knows I love the scent of the soap he uses. "Little weird, but I know you love the smell. Love you baby girl, -Ash."
I smile to myself as I finish reading what he wrote. I write the date on the back of the sticky note and put it in a shoe box to keep it. I'm not just going to throw away the notes, I'm going to keep them, hopefully forever. I slide into Ashton's hoodie and the mint fills my nose. I go over to my bed and look out the window, watching the lights shine in the night.
The ringing of my phone startles me but I smile once I see it's Ashton. "I enjoyed your note." I say, answering the phone.
Ashton laughs on the other line. "I'm glad you did. We just landed by the way. Luke is on the phone with Chloe." Ashton explains. I can hear the muffled sounds of people as he talks. It's always loud in an airport. "How are you?"
How am I? I don't know. I'm upset, but I'm okay. "I'm okay." I say after a moment. "I'll be okay though, what about you?"
"I'm okay." Ashton sighs. "I miss you already." He says and I hear him say "Thanks" to someone. Probably Luke.
"I miss you too, but I'll be back soon." I explain. "When you get back can you tell my mum to call me tomorrow? After I get off the phone with you I'm going to go to bed."
"Yeah." Ashton says and I hear the talking in the background stop. "I have to go." He says, "I'll lose you in the car. I love you Elli."
"I love you too Ashton." I say, smiling as I speak. "I'll text you in the morning."
"Okay, bye love." He says.
"Bye." I say silently as I end the call. I stare at my phone for a minute and hold back the tears. I take a deep breath and sigh. I'll be back in less than a month to see everyone. I'll work ahead on my work to stay longer like Chloe and I had planned. It'll be perfect.