“Looks like we’re getting new neighbors across the way from us,” Ell said as she looked out the apartment window that leads to the fire escape outside.
I came up to look over her shoulder. “As long as they don’t have sex on the fire escape I don’t really care.”
“Like we’ve never done that before,” she teased.
I smirked. “Haven’t done it in a while since someone works more hours now.”
She looked at me with her bright smile. “True maybe when I get a night off.”
“Maybe.” I leaned over and pecked her lips.
“Now help me figure out how to put this dining table together.”
She followed me into our small kitchen. “You know I have to go to sleep soon since I have to work tonight.”
“I am well aware of that.” I sat down by the parts and opened up the instruction.
“You do know trying to read those instructions are impossible right?”
“It’s a good thing it comes with pictures then.” I folded the instructions and got to work on figuring out what parts go where.
“You know you look hot when you get all wrapped up in a project.”
I looked over my shoulder at her. “Hot enough for you to skip work?”
Her eyes roamed over my body as I stood up and walked over to her. “Not nearly enough.”
I trapped her in between my arms and against the kitchen counter. I leaned down. “You sure?” I purred in her ear.
I could just feel the shiver that wracked through her body. “Very sure,” she said breathlessly.
“Well I guess I can work with what time we do have.” I brushed my lips against her neck.
“Carmilla,” she groaned.
I trailed kisses down her neck then back up to behind her ear. “Do you want me to stop?” I whispered then gently bit down on her ear lobe.
She gasped. “N-no.”
“Good.” I reached my hands down to behind her thighs then lifted her onto the kitchen counter. “Because I’m hungry.”
I pulled down her shorts and underwear. I’m going to enjoy this meal.
I set the box down on the kitchen counter. The door opened and I walked out of the small kitchen to see Perry and LaF bringing in some more boxes. They put them down in the small kitchen area. Perry opened one of the boxes and started to go through it. LaF stretched out their back then turned to look at me.
“Thanks for helping,” I said to the both of them.
“Anything for you frosh,” LaF said.
“I’m not a first year anymore LaF,” I said.
They shrugged. “You’ll always be frosh to me frosh.” I smiled and shook my head.
“I’m going to start organizing your kitchen,” Perry said while taking a stack of dishes to one of the cabinets.
“You don’t have to Perry,” I reassured.
“It’s fine. I want to do it,” she said cheerily. I looked at LaF and they shrugged. I sighed. We have learned to not get in Perry’s way when she sets her mind to doing something. LaF looked to the door at the sound of footsteps coming down the hallway.
Danny walked into the apartment and set the box she was carrying down on the sofa. “I’ll be back Laura. I have to park the moving truck somewhere else until I can return it tomorrow after work,” she said while twirling the keys in her hand the way Kirsch used to do it. She’s started to do these little things like him a lot more lately.
“Ok. I’ll start unpacking.”
She smiled. “Alright. I’ll pick up some food as well.” She walked over to me and gave me a peck on the lips. “See you all in a bit.”
I smiled and watched her leave. She closed the door behind her then I turned to see the weird look on LaF’s face. It was the look they had when they wanted to say something, but couldn’t. “What?” I asked curiously.
They shook their head. “Nothing.”
“LaF what is it?”
They glanced at Perry. I looked at Perry from the corner of my eye and saw her small shake of the head. LaF looked back at me. “Nothing frosh. Let’s get you both settled into your new home.”
“LaFontaine,” I said sternly.
They glanced at Perry again then shrugged. “You would think Danny’s left hand would stop twitching every time she kisses you,” they stated.
I crossed my arms over my chest and stared at them. “Would yours?”
They looked down to the soulmate mark on their left wrist as well as their wedding ring then lovingly to Perry. I glanced at Perry through the corner of my eye and saw she had stopped to hear the answer. LaF sighed and gave another shrug. “Point taken Hollis.”
I nodded my head as Perry went back to stocking my cabinets. “I’m fine you know. Danny and I are fine.”
“I know. We just worry at times is all.”
“We just want you to be happy Laura,” Perry added.
“I know and I appreciate it,” I said, “but like I said, we’re fine.” I walked into the living room to sort through the boxes to see what would be easier to put away.
“Well that’s good to know. So are you ready to start your new job?” Perry asked.
“Yeah. The newspaper is waiting for me to come in tomorrow to give me a debrief on everything and show me around the office.”
“Are they giving you your own office?” LaF asked.
“Not sure and I don’t really care. As long as I have desk space I’ll live.” I found the couch pillows and started to arrange them on the couch.
“Well we’re just glad you were able to find something so soon,” Perry said as she came into the living room.
“So am I. I was stressing out way too much with trying to wrap up my pieces, finding a new job, and helping Danny find us an apartment as well as taking phone calls for her while she was at work. It was really a hassle to get everything done and ready to go before the semester started and even still we need to hold off on unpacking because we’re both starting work tomorrow. Then I still need to-”
“Chill Hollis,” LaF said cutting me off. They smiled crookedly at me. “No need to ramble frosh. We get it.”
I sighed heavily. “Yeah sorry. Just so many things going on.”
“We understand sweetie, so if you need our help we’re here for you,” Perry soothed.
“Thank you. I really do appreciate it.”
“We know sweetie,” Perry said caringly.
I ran my fingers through my hair. “I do need to call my dad and let him know I’m here and then have him stop by so I can show him the apartment.”
“Well if anything we can let him into your apartment and show him around while you and Danny are at work if you want,” LaF offered.
I smiled. “Thank you. Really. You two have been so helpful with everything. I don’t know what I would’ve done without you.”
“That’s what friends are for,” Perry said while smiling.
Perry clapped her hands. “Well let’s help you get some of this stuff organized so you have less to worry about.”
I nodded my head and smiled. I love my friends.
I looked down at my phone as it vibrated against the new kitchen table. I sighed wanting to ignore it, but knew if I didn't answer it he would only keep calling.
"Hey Momma's Boy," I said while walking into the small kitchen to lean back against the counter.
"You really need to stop calling me that," he said annoyed.
"When it stops being true I'll stop calling you that Willy Boy."
He sighed heavily. "You are such an ass."
"Tell me something new Sherlock."
There was silence for a long moment. "Look I'm calling because mother wants to see you."
I gripped the edge of the counter tightly. "William you know how I feel about this subject."
"I know, but I am running out of excuses for you especially since it's summer break."
"Tell her I'm working." Which wasn't really a lie to be honest.
He sighed again. "You know there's only so many times I can use that excuse."
"I don't really care. I'm not meeting her."
“Can’t you do me this one favor so she can leave me alone about it?”
"No because it's not going to be this one favor. She'll keep bugging you and you'll keep bugging me. There's no end, so I'll just keep saying no."
"I hate being the middle man."
I looked down at the floor. "I know and I'm sorry, but I'm not going to change my mind."
He sighed tiredly. "Alright."
"Of course. We're still good for this weekend right?"
"Good. I'll see you then."
I hung up the phone and set it down on the counter. I do feel bad for putting Will in this position, but it's honestly not my fault that he is in this position. Mother uses him as a messenger boy which leaves me no other choice to use him as one as well. You would think that since I don't want to talk to her at all that she would understand that using Will was not going to change my mind or make me start talking. Just because I have a great relationship with Will does not mean I'll talk to her for his sake just so she could leave him alone. If anything he needs to start standing up for himself instead of continuing to be a Momma's Boy who does everything she wants him to. I mean the kid is bending over backwards to get his business degree for her while also getting an engineering one for himself. I'm surprised he hasn't ended up in the hospital yet due to a mental break down or physical and mental exhaustion. I really don't know how he does it.
"Was that Will?"
I looked to the hallway to see her dressed and ready to head out to her shift. "Yeah. He wants me to have lunch with him and mother."
She nodded her head and came into the kitchen. "You should go. It's probably not easy for him to always have to be between you two." She reached into the fridge for the orange juice.
"I'm not having this discussion with you again," I said dismissively.
"You never want to have this discussion," she bit back.
"Because there's nothing to discuss," I said mildly angry.
She stared at me disbelievingly then rolled her eyes and placed the juice back in the fridge. She picked her cup up and walked right pass me shaking her head. "I don't want to argue before work."
"It wouldn't be an argument if you wouldn't push the issue."
She grabbed her messenger bag and slung it over her shoulder. "You're right it's all my fault," she said sarcastically.
I crossed my arms and stared at her. "Are you serious right now?"
She set her cup down on the coffee table and grabbed her keys. "I'm going to go before this," she points to me and her, "blows up." She turned and went for the door.
"If you would just leave things alone it wouldn't blow up," I said as she pulled the door open.
"And if you would just fucking talk to me then yeah things wouldn't blow up," she said frustratedly. She walked out into the hall and slammed the door behind her.
I bit my bottom lip then knocked the side of my head against the dividing wall in the kitchen. "Fuck!"
I grabbed my cigarettes and lighter then made my way over to the window so I could climb out onto the fire escape. I looked out the window and saw my new neighbor standing on the fire escape with her cellphone. She was a tiny girl with long honey brown hair. She was leaning her elbows against the railing and looking out into the city. I hope she's not a stickler about smoking.
I opened my window and I climbed out onto the fire escape. I stayed close to my window and lit my cigarette. I tossed the rest of the packet through the window to settle on the ground. I took a long drag and blew the smoke away from her. I tried to not listen in on her conversation, but tonight I really didn't want to be thinking about my own problems.
"Yes dad. I will try to see you tomorrow. Uh huh. Yeah. I know. We will visit you this weekend. Of course you can. Alright. Remember LaF and Perry are going to let you in tomorrow at two. Alright. I will. I love you too. Goodnight." She hung up the phone and sighed.
I glanced at her from the corner of my eye and watched as she ran her fingers through her hair. I took the cigarette from my mouth and flicked it to shake the ashes off the end of it. I kept it between my fingers as I stared out into the night.
"Hey," she spoke.
I turned to see her resting her cheek in her hand and staring at me. "Hey yourself," I responded.
"I'm Laura," she introduced herself.
She looked away from me. "Those things are going to kill you one day," she commented.
I stared at my cigarette. "We're all dying anyway, so what does it matter when?"
She looked back at me with sadness in her eyes. "I guess that depends on what's worth living for now."
I stared at her long and hard. She looked away after a while. I looked away to the stars above. "I guess so." I stuffed my cigarette out.
"See you some other time sunshine."
"Yeah see you."
I climbed back into my apartment and shut the window. I stood by the window and watched as she seemed to be amazed by the stars. I soon closed the curtains. I should sleep since I have to be in the shop early tomorrow.