Chapter 12Mature

"Ooh, Nien's gotta date!" Kyle tickled her ribcage. "Who's the lucky guy?" Nien scowled. "Stop it." She brushed off her shirt and sighed. "His name's Aaron." She watched as Luce's eyes widened. "The Aaron guy that works with you?" There was a look of slight jealousy in her eyes. "Where's he taking you?" Liam scoffed. "Luce, it's my responsibility to give this guy a background check, to, you know, make sure he's good enough for Nien." He turned towards her.

"Is he tall?"

Nien nodded. "Yes."

"What color's his hair?"

"Blonde."

"Smile?"

"Nice and white."

"Smooth talker?"

Nien smiled, remembering when he had flirted with her at work. "Mmm hm." Liam smiled and crossed his arms. "If just the thought of him makes Nien smile, he's a keeper." He uncrossed his arms and nudged Nien. "Grumpy." He teased. "Pfft. What kinda background check is that?" Kyle shook his head. "Where's he taking you, and is he paying?"

"We're going to the movies after work tomorrow, and yes, he's paying." Nien sat down at the chair in the corner, like she always did. Luce sat at her feet, fumbling with her fingernails. "So.. you've got a date." Nien nodded. "Yeah."

"How is it that you're the depressed gothic who hates everything, and the supposedly hottest guy to ever walk the earth asks you out? What does he even see in you?" Luce glared up at Nien, who returned her glare. "You know, Luce, just because a guy has never liked you in your lifetime doesn't mean you have to act all b****y 'cause someone likes me." Luce stood up. "Oh, so I'm a b**** now?!" Nien stood up to face her. "Yeah you are! You're the most self-centered, jealous, b**** I've ever known to exist!"

The two girls continued to shout insults in eachother's faces for the next couple minutes when Kyle and Liam flew into the room and tried to break up the fight. Kyle grabbed Luce by her shoulders and pulled her away from Nien, who Liam was holding down. "Stop it, Nien! This is absolutely ridiculous! You're getting into a bloody catfight with your best friend about some guy you barely know! This isn't like you. What's your problem?" Liam half shouted, half spoke into Nien's face. A single tear fell out of her eye, which she immediately wiped out of the way.

"Do you guys really think of me like that?" Her voice was cracking up now, to her surprise. She wasn't even as upset as she sounded anymore. Liam's brow rose in confusion. "Like what?" She sniffled. "Like some depressed gothic. Because I don't think of myself that way. I mean, I know I'm not always happy or at peace with the world or whatever, but.." She broke into sobs, and she was now infuriated with herself about crying about something so stupid. Liam rolled his eyes.

"Nien, something's wrong with you. I have never seen you cry before, and you're completely losing it over something so dumb. I cannot believe that you're wasting your tears on such an idiotic situation. Just settle down."

Nien wiped her face dry and stopped the tears from coming. "Yeah, I know." She flopped back into the chair and sighed. "I'm really worn out, Liam, so I think I'm gonna crash over here. Can you give me a wake-up call at about.. 7:00 or so?" Liam scoffed. "I wasn't aware that this was a bloody hotel." He smiled. "Yeah, I guess so."

"Night." Nien leaned over the arm of the chair and fell asleep. About ten minutes later, Liam tucked a pillow under her head and threw a blanket over her skinny body. "G'night." He whispered, then smiled once more before leaving the room.

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"Nien, wake up. It's quarter after seven. Nien. C'mon!" Liam shook Nien awake. "Mmm." She groaned. Liam sighed. "Nien, Joe's at the door!" She sat up, knocking the pillow to the floor. "What?!"

"I wasn't serious, just trying to get you up." Liam winced as Nien slapped his arm. "Ow!" Nien scowled. "You deserve it." She got dressed in her old blue jeans and a black sweatshirt, then washed her hair in the sink, which proved to be a very difficult task- barely any water came out of the faucet. She grabbed her bag and slipped her shoes on. "Bye, guys! See you later tonight." And with that, she headed out the door.

"Wait, Nien!" She turned around to find Liam running towards her. "What?" He took a deep breath, and pulled a slim, silver object out of his pocket. "Use this, in case you need anything. I've got one too." He held a cell phone in the air. "How did you-" Nien started. "They're real cheap, you just pay for what you use." He glanced at the object in her hand. "I don't use them much, just in case of an emergency or whatnot." Nien nodded. "I see.." She turned over the phone in her palm. "Well, then. See you later, I guess." She smiled. "See you."

The End

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