Watching Elliot doing that lift, it made me think of me and Pay and what was. He fitted into my shoes perfectly, and seeing her in his arms... It was our thing, that lift. The lift that we perfected, the lift that took us almost to nationals. I still remembered the first time we did it, when I was only ten and Payton nine. I had struggled under the weight of her, although she was as light as a bird, and we both toppled like bowling pins. Nearly six years later, that lift had came as naturally to the both of us as breathing. Which was why it irked me that Elliot could do it so effortlessly, so easily. As though he was born to lift Pay into his arms, whereas I had to work so hard to make that happen.
I knew I shouldn’t have reacted as I had, but I just wanted Pay to understand. To understand that she meant a lot to me, and to understand that I was hurt by her baseless accusations about Eliza and me. All right, it was not the smartest thing to turn up to our anniversary late, and with another girl on my arm, but if she could make new friends then why can’t I? And no matter how much I loved Pay, I couldn’t stand by and let her talk trash of Eliza. It was one thing to be jealous (about what I don’t even know), but it’s quite another to call her a slut.
To admit the truth, I did not leave the studio when I slammed the door in Pay and Elliot’s face. I was boiling inside, angry that she who could almost read my thoughts had turned against me. I didn’t understand, she was mine and that was that. But somehow Elliot came into the picture and everything became a mess. But I waited outside in the car park for Pay anyway, slumped in the backseat of Mum’s car.
Everything was becoming too much to handle for me. The cast list for Mary Poppins the production had been released last week, and the practices have started to take over my life. On top of that Mary and Jake have suddenly decided to put me and Pay separately into the solo competition. I didn’t really want to do it, to be honest, because I knew it would only set Pay and me further apart. But I must admit the choreography’s amazing. Pay wouldn’t expect it of me, nor would the judges probably, because the song choice was quite eccentric. I’ve been working my butt off to really stretch and get into those flowing contemporary moves for my piece. Only the highest quality dancing would be worthy of being accompanied by Ed Sheeran’s “The A Team”.
But this whole thing with Payton and Elliot was dragging me down into quicksand. I signalled Mum to drive out of the car park when I saw Pay walking arm in arm with Elliot towards his car. It was too much, he had taken her completely from me. The ugly beast named Jealousy reared its head within me, and I felt the urge to leap from the car and snatch my best friend (my GIRLFRIEND) from the grasp of Elliot. As it was, I took out my phone and scrolled down my contacts list.
“Payton?” I said softly when I got transferred directly to her voicebox, “Call me back please, or meet me tonight at ten in the park by my house...”
I hesitated, then added “I love you Pay” before hanging up.