[28] Happy New Year

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B A D
B O Y ' S
G A M E

Whittington Lane, 11:45 p.m.

The party has almost reached its peak, the New Year is just around the corner. It's a time for celebration and yet I'm sitting on a couch alone with a cup of flat soda in my hand. 

Arden, Zac, and I had arrived at the party promptly at nine. However, in the past two or so hours I've only seen them once. It hasn't been confirmed yet but it's as if they're dating. If they're not dating then I'm confused.

Well, they're definitely kissing. Or at least they are now. It's apparent by their appearance when they walk up to me right before midnight.

The lipstick on Zac's face says it all, the lipstick definitely is one that belongs to my best friend. There was only one person who wore that specific shade of red.

Arden sits on the edge of the couch and Zac stands behind her with an arm around her shoulders.

"It's nearly midnight and you haven't even taken one shot of alcohol," Arden states, knowing that something is up with me.

I shrug, my eyes not staring at her but past. I'm staring at the various couples that are preparing for their midnight kisses.

"What's going on, El? There's something going on between you and Archer, what happened? Did you guys break up?" Arden asks.

"No, I just don't feel like dancing or drinking," I say, hoping she'll buy the excuse.

However, she doesn't. Instead, she says a slightly colorful word and let me tell you this:

Arden Michaelson doesn't cuss.

"Bullshit, something happened," she replies.

She grabs one of my hands, takes one of Zac's hands in her other, and pulls us to a more private area.

"Ellie, you can tell me whatever is bothering you. You're my best friend and I want what's best for you," she says sincerely.

"Archer set Ryder up with my cousin," I say, admitting what was bothering me.

Zac mumbles, "he definitely deserved that punch."

I give a slightly raised eyebrow and then look at Arden for a reaction.

She licks her lips before replying, "well, he made a bad decision in the past and I bet he wishes he could take it back. But, he can't. I think you guys should talk it out, he wouldn't do something like that for no reason."

I tilt my head a bit, Arden elbows Zac gently.

"Right, Zac?" she asks.

He nods in a definite motion.

"And plus you wouldn't have had the opportunity to spend all this time with Archer if Ryder hadn't cheated. You and Archer are great together, anyone can see that. Consider it fate," she continues.

I give a long empty stare. Consider it all as fate. This was all fate.

"El, you should at least hear him out. At least get closure if anything," she says.

I sigh, knowing that she ought to be right. Before I can sigh once again Zac speaks.

"Ellie, why don't you get some fresh air and have time to yourself? The balcony upstairs is probably free and if you're up there at midnight you won't have to deal with all these hormonal teenagers," Zac suggests.

"You want to leave Ellie alone when she's in a mind-boggling situation?" Arden asks with wide eyes.

Zac holds one of Arden's hands, the touch relaxes her.

"It's good you're cute," she says softly.

He gives a smile to me and nods for me to go and take time for myself.

Time for me to consider that the past three or so months was just fate, that my happiness would only come after I go through times of adversity.

There are shouts echoing the halls as I walk, the New Year's countdown starts. I too start my own little countdown, taking myself out to the second-floor balcony.

It's a bit chilly and the countdown chants are still present, I stare at the moon.

Ten.

Nine.

Eight.

Seven.

Six.

Five.

Four.

Three seconds before the strike of midnight and I feel arms grab my waist, my body is pulled closer to another's. My lips against somebody else's a mere second later, I end up kissing them back at the same intensity as the one who I'm receiving the kiss from. The one kiss ending up to be a series, a series that has me dropping a single tear onto my cheek.

The lips were recognizable, definitely recognizable.

"Happy New Years, Grey," the owner of the lips mumbles in between kisses.

Happy New Years.

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