I assaulted Ambers lips one last time, hearing Zack, Michael and Nick let out whoops. Even Darren seemed genuinely pleased for us.
“See you tomorrow,” I murmured against her lips. Then I turned and got into the car. I waved her bye as dad pulled away. I turned to face dad and knew before he said anything I wouldn't like it. I'd seen that expression so many times before. Knew exactly what it meant.
“I know we promised Lily. But we're being moved again,” Dad said. I felt my heart drop, just when I'd finally gotten a fresh start with Amber.
“When?” I asked, my voice growing sober.
“One week. So at least it won't affect you finishing here or starting college,” he said. I nodded and stared out the window. Fighting tears the whole car journey. I got out of the car and ran straight up to my room. I could hear murmurs downstairs. Mum wanting to cheek on me. Dad telling her to give me time. I didn't care, all I could do was cry into my pillow. Another move. Starting over again. Leaving behind everyone. Leaving behind Amber. Why? I'd finally gotten things right between us. I pulled my self up and threw my pillow at a wall. The soft thump didn't make me feel any better.
I whipped at my eyes and checked my phone. Already Amber had sent me a 'I miss you' text. I felt a fresh wave of tears pour hot and salty down my cheeks. I wanted to talk to Zack, he understood. But then Amber would find out. And it'd be cruel of me to tell someone else before her. I sat on my bed, half covered in my quilt and stared at my walls. How many poems had I written about moving? How many times did this ache get to me, I'd lost count. I stood up, reading old words I'd written about the same thing. I listed in my head the number of places I'd lived. Enough to need both hands and a third. I went into the bathroom to wash my face. My eyes still looked sore and red as I went downstairs.
“Lily,” mum said the moment I walked into the living room. She stood up to hug me.
“Get out of it,” I said to my dad, pushing past my mums attempts to comfort me. His lips grew into a thin line, his jaw clenched.
“Lily, I can't-” he began
“Try!” I yelled. “I've never wanted to stay in one place more dad. Please,” I whispered, feeling my eyes grow wet again. My dad looked away, unable to see me like this. He left the room, escaping from me. My body shook as I cried. When mum touched my shoulder I turned and buried myself into her. She held me until the rain stopped.
“How about I make you your favourite dinner?” she suggested when I'd calmed down enough to pull away. I nodded numbly, murmuring a thanks. I didn't really care, but it would make her feel better. I sat on the sofa, starring at the different school portraits. Everywhere I'd been, I'd felt disconnected, like I'd never fit in. Here, I didn't feel that at all. I flicked through my mobiles contacts until I reached Ambers. She picked up on the first ring.
“Hey,” she said happily. I could just imagine her grinning, unaware of how quickly everything was going to fall apart. I opened my mouth to speak and choked. How many times was I going to cry in one night?
“Lily, what's wrong?” she asked, hearing my soft sobs. When I couldn't reply I heard the sound of movement in the background.
“I'm coming over,” she said. I opened my mouth to object, at if I saw her tomorrow I'd be calmer. If she came now we'd both be crying wrecks.
“You don't have to,” I finally murmured out, aware of how weak my voice sounded.
“Yes I do. You're my girlfriend now. I'm not leaving you alone when you're down. We both know you'd do the same for me,” Amber replied, her voice stubborn and determined. I gave a short laugh at her, imagining the hand she'd have on her hip.
“Okay, see you soon,” I said, wiping at my eyes for the umpteenth time. The call ended and I looked up to see mum in the door.
“I'll call the guardhouse. I've made enough for two,” she said. I gave her a smile as thanks and she headed into the hallway. I sat on the sofa, hugging myself. I could feel the familiar itch on my wrists. Even if I did have something to use, I was resolute not to. I didn't want to imagine Amber's broken face when she saw the fresh, weeping cuts.