Arianne

Arianne sat in the far corner of the senior lounge with her feet on the bench. Her black and white knee high covered legs were pulled up to her chest and her back lay flat against the wall propping up her body. A book of poems by Tortured Souls was held open by one hand, while a hydra fizzy pop rested in the other. She spotted Ashlan bounding into the room almost instantly and waved her over.

“So where were you this morning?” Ash asked.

Arianne offered up a sly smile before answering. “Overslept! It pissed my ma off but she didn’t want to deal with Officer Burne again. Truth be told I think she’s getting a little tired of his lectures on truancy, so she wrote me up a bogus Dr’s note. I figured since I had a free pass I might as well enjoy it, so I walked the rails to the Vanir Mines and kicked it in the caverns for the rest of first and second.”

Ash nodded and gave her a knowing look. “You have to work at the movie store tonight Ari?” Ash had hoped they’d spend the evening together. It was Friday night after all and there wasn’t much to do in a town as small as Drexel.

“Yeah till 9,” came the unwelcome reply.

Ash dreaded spending another Friday night alone with Talya, watching her stuff her face with popcorn while she cried over some sappy chick flick was not her idea of a good time.

“I think I’ll head to the caves then, Orion’s throwing a bonfire,” Ash said finally, “Meet me there after work?”

Ari shook her head regrettably “Can’t tonight, I’ve got to open tomorrow and ma’s already threatening to ground me for the rest of the semester. Can you believe that? Nearly eighteen and she’s going to ground me? Anyway, if you do go out there be careful, okay? I saw a guy going into one of the northern caverns earlier, not anyone I recognize from around here. He didn’t look like a psycho, actually he looked kind of cute but you never know and it’s not like anyone comes to Drexel on vacation.”

Ash pulled a Lomita Melon from her backpack and split it into sections, “want some?” she said before greedily devouring a quarter of the small fruit.

“Na, No thanks Ash. I don’t see how you can eat those things anyhow, their so sour. Hey! Did you have any run-ins with Mr. tall, dark, and handsome last night?”

Ash nearly choked, and stole a big gulp of Ari’s Hydra Fizz.

“Oh, so you did see him,” Ari continued, “So what was he this time mysterious and sexy or cold blooded executioner?”

Ash gave a non committal shrug as the bell rang signaling the end of lunch. The two girls parted company and headed to class.

Although they attended several classes together throughout the day an opportunity never arose in which they could continue their discussion. The hours dragged on without incident, and the morning turned to afternoon, and then to night. Ash readied herself for the evening’s festivities and gathered together a flashlight, batteries and other small items she thought may prove useful. Hastily placing all of her belongings into a small neon orange camping duffle and checking once more to see the flashlight was fully functional she left the room and closed the door behind her. Orion and his friends should have already arrived and would be waiting.

The End

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