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Pen Your Pride

Cinderella it's not midnight

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Cinderella//Steve Moakler 


"Chas, it's your turn!" the blonde party host called out, her fake-white smile spreading across her face. 

"Nah, just skip me. I like watching." Chas handed the root beer bottle to the boy next to him. 

"Nuh-uh-uh! Everybody has to play, it's the rules!" Chas rolled his eyes. 

"Clarice..." he trailed off. She gave him a wide-eyed exasperated look, and he sighed. The pop music blared through the speakers behind us, threatening to take our hearing away. Coke cans littered the floor around us, random bowls of chips all over the room. A small lamp was turned on over in the corner, throwing a small twinlking of light over the bottle Chas held in his hand. A couple dozen of the party goers sat in a circle, some crowded onto a couch, most of us on the ground. Chas placed the bottle on the hardwood floor, gave his wrist a twist, and let the bottle spin. It continued spinning for a while, eventually slowing down, ready to make it's choice. Once around, twice, the third time... 

My heart pounded in my ears as the bottle came to a complete stop, right in my direction. Chas looked up, his perfect blue eyes locking with my green ones. Blood slowly creeped up my face, engulfing it in an unforgiving blush. I let out a short gasp as the crowed "oohed" at the bottle's choice. Chas cleared his throat and stood up, motioning slightly with his hand for me to follow him. I blinked in confusion and fear and stood, too, clamoring through the middle of the circle, staying a few steps behind Chas. 

Clarice was in front of Chas, a sly smile on her face, her hand on the basement's closet's door handle. I groaned inwardly, wondering if this cliche had really become my life at the moment. Clarice opened the door, revealing the pitch black room. I followed Chas, his stiff shoulders at my eye's height.  

The closet door clicked locked behind me. 

We stood in silence. 

"So..." I trailed off. I could hear Chas searching for something, his hands grazing over the coats and boxes stored in the tiny closet. With a click he turned on the overhead light bulb, the string dangling just slightly above his head. I was fully exposed now, in all my embarassing glory. I smiled grimly at Chas. 

"I have a girlfriend," he said, barely glancing at me. I ran a hand over my face, rubbed my eyes. 

"I know," I sighed. I sat down on a cardboard box, playing with my hair, my shoulders slumped. I looked up at Chas through my eyebrows. "So what do we do now?" The question came out harsher than I had intended. 

"Hey, don't be like that. I have a girlfriend." 

"You already said that!" I covered my mouth slightly with my hand. "Sorry," I mumbled. My stomach churned in agony, the tension in the cramped closet increasing. Tears formed in my eyes. 

"Hey," Chas said softly, crouching down so his face was at the same level as mine. "What's the matter?" I shook my head, unable to speak. "Hannah. What's wrong?" I looked up to the ceiling, unable to believe the words I was going to say next.  

"I've never been kissed," I told the ceiling, a crack running through the white plaster. 

"What?" Chas chuckled, then stopped as I glared at him. "Oh. You... mean it. I- Hannah, I'm sorry, but I have a girlfriend..." 

"I know, I know," I said, waving a hand in between our bodies. I wiped at the tears in my eyes, shaking my head at how pathetic I was. Chas stood, then stooped his body down, reaching out a hand toward me. "What are you doing?" I asked, confused. He smiled at me, nodding at his hand. I took it, and he stood me up. 

"Don't tell my girlfriend..." he said, his fingers tracing my jaw, his hand supporting my neck. I nodded slightly, my heart racing. Chas stared into my eyes, his other hand sweeping my hair behind my ear. He bent his neck and I stood on my tip toes, our eyes closing at the same time. 

Our lips met, so soft, warm, and the perfect pressure. Chas's hands pulled my face closer to him, our eyelashes brushing each other's cheeks, our breathing quiet. After a second I pulled away, a smile instantly spreading over my face, my eyes still closed. I opened them, looking straight up at Chas. 

"Thank you," I whispered, only being sure that he had heard me by the smile playing on his lips. Chas reached out his arms, wrapping me in a hug, before he reached up and turned off the overhead light. 

We left our embrace, two separate people, as he knocked three times on the closet door, signaling Clarice to open the door. 

Even though the basement only had one lamp lighting it, it seemed so much brighter than before. 


(Comments are GREATLY appreciated!) 

[P.S. It's pronounced "Chaz". :P)

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