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Pen Your Pride

v. red light green light (part two)

126 12 12

(btw the picture is a take on Alice in Wonderland ✌🏾️)

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"Green light," said she.

"Red light," said she.

"This is a game for children," said she.

"Green light," said she.

"Red light," said she.

"Green light," said she.

"Got you," said he.

And that's how it began.

______________________________

"Red velvet cupcake is my sexuality now," Alice declares a few months later, in the café Belle Nuit, peeling the wrapping off her third mini red velvet cupcake.

Peter chuckles across from her in the small booth and the angels hum with joy. "Shame. Does this mean it's a crime if I try to hit on you now?"

She smirks, though her mind is screaming oh my God what. "You missed out." She takes a huge bite of the cupcake and swoons. "Just kidding. I think it's my religion now."

When she moves the cake from her lips, Peter is staring at her intensely and she finds herself unable to look away. But can you blame me? she thinks. The way he stares at me has to be illegal somehow, right?

"What?" she finally asks, not moving her gaze.

Peter's mouth quirks at the edges. "You've got a little something right--" he gestures to his face.

Alice attempts to swipe at it but nothing comes off her hand. "Where?"

And suddenly, Peter is leaning over their tiny booth in the far corner. "Right here, Wonderland." And suddenly, his large, warm hand is cupping her small face, his soft thumb carefully caressing the left side of her upper lip. And suddenly, he is all she can see.

She counts two tiny freckles on his nose -- no, three, five, seven. But they're minuscule. She couldn't have seen them from any farther away than this. His brow is furrowed in concentration, adorable little wrinkles dominating his forehead and eyebrows. His nose is crinkled and his lips are pursed. Pursed and pink and perfect.

He is perfect.

"I got it," he says at last, and pulls his hand back to show her: a smear of white frosting is on his thumb. She stares at it and then, without thinking, leans forward and licks it right off his thumb.

Oh, my God, she did not just do that.

His breath hitches in his throat -- she's close enough to hear it -- and then her red face cannot seem to face his. "I-I'm sorry, I don't know what I was--"

Suddenly, there are two warm fingers under her chin, pulling her back, back, back, until she is looking into that luminescent green pool of eyes that is Peter and she cannot speak. Again.

"Don't be sorry, Alice," he whispers, and a smile breaks across his face like the calm after a storm. "Never, ever be sorry for anything you do."

His face is so close, his breath so warm. He called her Alice, not Wonderland.

"Peter, I--"

"Yeah, Alice?"

"Peter, I've never felt this way about anything the way I feel about--"

You.

"Your check, ma'am," a waiter, who looks no more than sixteen, says, placing a small black leather casing in front of Alice. Then the kid seems to realize he's interrupted something and begins to apologize profusely because after all, Peter is still holding Alice's face and their heads are nearly touching and with their heads go their lips and with their lips go--

Alice suddenly moves away from Peter's warm, familiar touch as though it burns her.

Because she knows from experience if her walls come down for this boy -- this lovely, perfect, wonderful boy -- he is going to hurt her. It might not be now, it might not be tomorrow, it might not be a year from now, it might not even be intentional -- it's going to happen.

And she is not ready for that.

It is silent save for the clinking of cups and assorted porcelain in the back of the café.

"Sorry, man," says the high-school kid at last. "I mean, I didn't know--"

"It's alright, Daniel," says Peter, and Alice can tell, even with her head hung, that he hasn't taken his eyes from her. "This one's on me."

Alice's head snaps up but Peter is already writing a check out and signing it. As he places it in the leather casing** and hands it back to the high school kid, Daniel, his eyes catch hers and she looks away again, ashamed. Her stomach is roiling, and she doesn't think it has anything to do with the four red velvet cupcakes she ate five seconds ago.

"Care to finish that sentence of yours?" Peter asks softly.

Alice shuts her eyes tightly. "What?"

"'You've never felt this way about anything the way you feel about--'" he repeats. "Tell me, Wonderland, what were you going to say?"

Wonderland. Not Alice.

"I was going to say...I was going to say these red velvet cupcakes," she says, giving him a fake half smile and inwardly wincing at how sincere she sounds. She might have been a terrible liar, but at least she is sincere. "They are divine."

No one speaks.

Suddenly, Peter stands up from the booth. Alice's heart sinks and she realizes it hadn't even been tomorrow, or a year from now -- he's walking away from her right now. And she doesn't know what she's going to do with herself after he does--

"Come with me."

Alice raises her head slowly to meet Peter's glowing, beautiful green eyes. "Please," he says, and holds out a hand. "Come. I've got to show you something."

Relief courses through her. Of course she goes with him.

Why wouldn't she?

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** listen I don't know what to call it you know those black leather things they give you with the money and stuff and you have to pay for all the amazing pizza you stuffed your face with for the past hour and a half and they just want you to get the hell out of their restaurant bc you're taking up space?

yeah that thing. I called it a black leather casing because who even knows what it's called

obviously not me

______

hi

it's exactly ten-twenty-eight p.m right now on a school night before a Monday

I think I did pretty good considering lack of friggin insPIRATION HOLY NO

dedicated to Megan because she wears the sparkly red shoes and she's proud of them

rock on Dorothy.

okay bye I need sleep bc sleep is so important

right up there with internet and tumblr and food

ooh maybe I should eat food too

k bye

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