Paperhouse

I fidgeted all the way home. I could barely grasp my keys to my apartment, let alone breathe normally. It’s like that feeling you get when you’ve been making out on your couch for a couple hours and your arms start to get wobbly.

Except this wasn’t a couch, it was a hard, cold, germy orange subway seat, and it wasn’t at all the same except for the arm spasms.

I took a deep breath, the kind yoga instructors like to do, in and out, in and out. Like a ship, rolling on the waves. Okay, sea sickness kicking in.

Breathe Zadie, this is awesome.

It is awesome. Out of all the hundreds of people to apply for this job, only ten were chosen. I was one of them. How did I, the impossibly introverted Zadie Ocean land a major magazine internship?

Karma, perhaps?

I reached for my cell phone as I got off the train, I had to call someone, I had to celebrate.

Then I had to sit there for a minute and think of all the people I actually knew. I counted on my left hand. It didn't exactly continue after that. I could always call Xander, but he probably thought I was a sell-out still. But he was the only person I could think of to call.

Once I was home, I changed into a celebratory outfit fit for going out and celebrating my suprise success. I grabbed a vintage red rockabilly dress from the closet, and set about rolling my hair into the impossible hot rollers. I slathered on a great deal of red lipstick and black eyeliner and sat back and admired my work.

I can look like a proper girl when I feel like it, I thought with a smirk. I always felt slightly more confident in red and clothes that weren't from this era.

I retreated back to my cell phone. Hesitated once again, and dialed Xander's number. He answered after what seemed like an eternity of his Sonic Youth ringback tone.

"What?" He snapped.

"You still mad?" I asked with a fake glimmer of innocence. He growled for a moment in the phone. He was quite good at it. If I didn't know him, I could have sworn it was an rabid pitbull on the other line.

"Xan?" I said, interrupting his noisemaking.

"I'm here. I'm here," he grumbled.

"Come out with me tonight. To celebrate. I'm going to Smokey Joe's. You love it there. I'll even buy you a drink," I pleaded. It was silent for a brief moment. I could almost hear him thinking.

"Are you asking me out?" He said as if it was embarrassing for him to say.

"God, Xan. No. That's too weird for me to consider. I don't really know anyone else to ask. Wait, that came out wrong. Just come with me so I'm not alone," I explained.

"Fine," he answered.

The End

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