Well, it definitely didn’t get any smaller in the time I’ve been gone, Allison thought as her and her troupe approached the house. Trekking up the dinosaur sized driveway that rivaled even her own, and though many things were swirling around her head, the smile that spread across her face was genuine. Andrew, or Drew as he went by most famously, was a family friend, one that she had known all her life and had most definitely been one of the people she had missed most. But then, she still couldn’t understand why Jared was inviting her to a party here. How did he know Andrew?
She started to turn around to Liz, ready to make her spill on everything Allison knew she knew about the situation, but she stopped herself. This was something she wanted to find out for herself.
Derek spoke up, “We should go around the back way. You know the front’s gonna be too hard to push through with all the people in there.” Allison motioned for Derek to lead the way and he did. Allison fell behind and into step with Sarah and Liz.
“You alright there, you look a little intense.” Liz asked, looping an arm around her waist.
“Yeah, fine.” Allison knew how she must look. Determination in her eyes, purpose in her stride. She was pumped. Who is this guy, and what’s his connection to me? was the question that kept running through her mind, and she knew she was about to figure that out. They watched as Derek fished through a flower pot, until his hand resurfaced with a key in it.
“It’s crazy that they never move that thing.” Allison said.
“Yeah, you know that someone is bound to break in there someday.” Sarah said, nodding her head. Derek successfully opened the door, reburied the key, and they were in.
They emerged into a kitchen that had obviously been barred off, simply because there weren't a million bodies roaming around, which seemed to be the state of the rest of the house. But they did find someone else in there, someone who looked as if they were seeing a ghost when they came through the door. That ghost being Allison.
“Ally?” Drew said, hopping off the counter he was seated on and coming toward them arms outstretched. Allison stepped forward into those arms.
“Yeah, I know. It’s me.” She said in response. She had missed her friend.
He laughed, “I see that.” He pulled away when she did, and she noticed his quick glance back at who she guessed was Liz and she smiled. Those two … she had been hoping they had gotten over it, whatever it was, and gotten together already. Their relationship was a little more complicated, but Liz was the only reason that they weren’t “official”. It was totally obvious that they were together, or at least that they wanted to be, in spirit. Both of them, with a passion that would make the observer blush at the little Romeo and Juliet thing they had going on. Allison, no matter how hard she tried, couldn’t imagine either of them with anyone else.
“You didn’t think to call or text or … something? How long have you been back?” Drew asked glancing back at her.
Allison squirmed a bit, feeling horrible and ridiculous for keeping quiet about her being back. But she hadn’t thought that it would really be a big deal if she had. She saw then that she was wrong. “About … three weeks.” When he opened his mouth to throw out a reprimand she hurriedly said, “I know, I know! Don’t yell, I should have called. I really am sorry, believe me.”
Drew shook his head and sighed, “You and your twisted logic … don’t worry I had to adjust to it awhile ago. Why do you think we’re friends now?” He smiled and turned to her friends … who were his friends too.
“Good to see you’re back man,” Drew said to Derek, sidestepping around her to do that man-hug thing that guys do. Clasping hands, giving each other a one armed hug and finally, slapping each other on the back chummily.
He hugged Liz, arms slipping around her delicately, making Allison smile and shake her head. Liz, I don’t get you sometimes … no more like most times. I sure hope he can keep waiting for you. She had no doubt that Andrew would though, he was good like that. Allison noticed there was an exchange of words that left Liz with a blush, but also a smirk, slanting her mouth.
He hugged Sarah, then pulled away to do that little handshake thing they had always done. Something that must have taken hours to collaborate, and then once all hugs were given out, Drew leaned back against the kitchen counter that they had found him on. They all stood in silence, letting the fact that they were all back together sink in for a moment.
“So who told you about the party?” Drew asked, breaking the silence.
“Jared, but these girls got their invite from someone else. Allison in particular.” Derek said, the last part was having been pretty much grumbled out.
“Allison? You’re getting out there huh?” But Allison didn’t hear a word they were saying. After Derek had said that a certain “Jared” had invited him to the party, something sort of exploded and things had, in a way, come together as well. There was really no denying it then. She turned to Liz and Sarah who were both grinning.
“So it was our Jared, thought so.” Liz said still grinning. “Something told me if you two ever met, you’d hit it off and what d’ya know?” Our Jared, Liz had called him. She only used a possessive term when it came to people when that person happened to be in her friend circle. One of them. Allison didn’t know if she should be happy that Jared was apparently one of them now. She couldn’t very well analyze what she was feeling, what with all the butterflies that had suddenly taken flight in her stomach.
“Wait, the guy that invited you here … was Jared? Jared Lord?” Allison nodded and Derek chuckled to himself, “Figures.” He muttered.
“So you’ve met Jared? And you most likely wouldn’t have even told old Drew here you were back if he hadn’t invited you, is that right?” Drew shook his head again, but he was smiling, “You know, you’re lucky girl. It’s pretty hard to stay mad at you. Come on, I know you’re dying to see him. It’s all over your face.” With that he turned and headed out of the kitchen. They all crept through the hallway, not wanting to draw attention. But with all the music and laughter, no one was paying attention to them.
“Hey,” Allison whispered. “Where’s Sam?” She hadn’t gotten in touch with her other friend either.
“Basement, where we’re headed,” Drew answered quietly. “He’s gonna be real happy to see you too.” Drew’s basement was on the other end of the house and they made their way there. Allison really was eager to see Jared again, especially with all she’d unearthed about him. Liz tugged on her arm and she looked over at her.
“Am I crazy, or does Drew really look that great in those jeans?” She whispered, Allison wasn’t sure she had done it quietly enough because she thought she had seen Drew shake his head slightly.
“No you’re not crazy,” Allison whispered even quieter than her friend. She was not risking Drew hearing her response to that question. Drew’s obvious hotness was nothing that he needed convincing of though.
Andrew Morgan had been gifted with beautiful brown eyes that seemed to have tiny flecks of gold around the irises, that was accented by his signature short, curly locks that fell over the side of his face, almost like some new boy band celebrity whose name was escaping her at that moment. But she had never seen curls look as good on anyone as they did on Drew. Sarah came over and linked arms with Allison on her other side.
“We talking about Drew? Yeah he looks good.” She said. Drew turned around, that staggering grin on his face.
“Come on guys, I can hear you.” He said, looking Liz over in a way that showed how much she was the only girl in the world to him. She squirmed slightly next to Allison. No one could undo Liz like Drew could. She was always the one making others slightly uncomfortable with her confidence and fearlessness. Drew … well he just took her as she was and Allison guessed that was what put Liz off balance.
“Well if you weren’t trying so hard to hear something, we wouldn’t be having a problem now would we?” Liz asked, hands on hips. Allison and Sarah scooted away so they could have their little confrontation.
“Who said anyone was having a problem? I rather like it when you speak of me so fondly.” He said stepping towards her.
“You didn’t hear anything.” Liz said quietly. Allison blushed herself, her toes curling in her shoes. No matter how random, this was one of those heart wrenching exchanges she had mentioned earlier. As she watched the two love birds in her midst, she couldn’t help herself from wanting something like what they had, or almost did anyway, with someone.
“Oh really? You know, I bought these jeans thinking of you. Funny that you actually liked them ... flattery is most definitely the way into my heart.” Even in the dim lighting of the house, Liz’s blush shown through and Allison’s got warmer ... but her smile did as well. Come on Liz … he’s right in front of you.
After a heavy pause, Liz killed the spell, “Yeah okay, lover boy. We all know that that my place there is already set.” She said, patting that broad chest that was so close to her then. “But we have a certain friend who came here to see yet another dear friend of ours. We shouldn’t let your little antics get in the way of that.” There was a collective groan, from Allison, Derek and Sarah alike. Yeah, just pull me into it why don’t you? Wimp. Drew was the only one who looked as if he hadn’t taken the hit so hard. He really looked as if he’d been expecting as much. Good sport, Allison thought.
“Sure,” was all Drew, said in response, with a faint smile on his face but there was something else in his eyes as well, that Allison couldn’t place, maybe Liz could. But he still turned away and joined Derek in front, leading them to the basement. Sarah and Allison made their way back over to walk with Liz.
“What was that?” Sarah hissed. “You totally had him!” Allison placed a hand on Sarah’s arm, trying to convey that she should take it down a notch. Liz looked a bit shaken and Allison didn’t think it would be a good idea to push her too much right then.
“Don’t worry about it. You wait until you’re ready, kay?” Allison said softly.
“Yeah ... thanks, Ally.” She said.
“No worries.” Allison said, by then they had reached the basement and Allison was caught up in her own thoughts again. She was about to see Jared, that gorgeous, English dream, that had been on her mind since she last left him.
Well, here goes nothing, Allison thought. Then began her descent into the basement, made precarious because of those heels. But she also stepped into the beginning of something that she wasn’t yet aware would change her life forever … whether she liked it or not.