“I can’t believe they booked us in a room with a single bed,” Allie complained loudly.
“Oh come on,” Kate tried to placate her. “It’s not that bad. We’ll only be here for a couple nights.”
Allie didn’t respond, though she continued to fuss around the room, grumbling about the hotel and how the entire trip had already dissolved into disaster. Kate followed her movements, exasperated by her exaggerated reaction to such a small inconvenience.
“Hey,” Kate said, stopping behind her and resting a hand on Allie’s shoulder. “It might even be fun. Think of it as a slumber party.” Kate squeezed Allie’s shoulder and felt the tension release under her touch.
Allie reached for Kate’s hand in a gesture of thanks and cranked her neck to offer a small smile. They had always been such opposites, but somehow they made it work.
“Besides,” Kate added, retreating for the bed, “it’s not like I snore or anything.”
“So, that is a train running in the room across the hall every night!”
Allie probably deserved the pillow that nailed her right in the face, but she scowled anyway. She attempted to return the favour, but it fumbled a few feet ahead of her on the floor. Kate’s laughter certainly didn’t help matters, but Allie’s huff of disapproval was enough to shut it down. Kate raised her hands and mouthed an insincere ‘sorry’ as she bit back further laughter.
“Come on, Allie,” she pleaded as she tugged the duvet and slid into the bed. “Stop being such a princess and get in here.” Kate patted the space next to her and winked. “It’s not like we haven’t slept together before.”
Allie couldn’t explain the deep pink that crept up her neck and onto her cheeks any more than the way her throat dried up and her response turned into a strangled squeak. But to her credit, Kate didn’t comment on any of it; she simply continued to pat Allie’s space in the bed with a soft, inviting smile.
Silence stretched the moment into a foreign awkwardness. This wasn’t who they were — they weren’t two strangers trapped in a room — they were best friends and roommates and…
Allie closed her eyes, took a deep breath and nodded.
“Okay, fine,” Allie acquiesced at last. She padded over to the bed, tamping down the inexplicable nervousness that permeated every step. Finally, she reached the bed, shifted the sheets and sat next to Kate. Kate grinned and sunk deeper into the covers.
“But if I wake up to find your hand on my ass, I reserve the right to kill you.” It was an attempt at levity, but turned out to be Allie’s biggest mistake of the night.
Kate chuckled. It was slow and already laced with the sluggishness of sleep.
“Deal,” Kate agreed softly. “I’m much more interested in your breasts, anyway.”
And while Kate closed her eyes and curled onto her side, Allie’s eyes shot wide open. Within minutes, Kate fell into a peaceful slumber, but Allie spent half the night staring up at the ceiling. Snores that rivalled the engine of a cruise ship sounded throughout the room. Yet, Allie had to admit — if only to herself — that it wasn’t the snoring that kept her up. It was Kate — and she had no idea what to do with that information.