chapter 8: The call

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Riley had been debating it all day, having had difficulty concentrating on anything else.

It wasn't like she could help it (if anything she wanted the thoughts to disappear completely), but all she could think back to was the night before. The way Farkle had wept into the crook of her neck, and how his hands had clung onto her coat so firmly she was sure his knuckles had turned a deadly white. Not to mention the way his eyes had been so dull and lifeless when he'd told her everything. Oh those blue eyes of his, the same ones she had stared into at the age of seven, now filled with a type of maturity she'd seen too many times before on those around her.

She'd meant it when she'd said they were better off in different paths, but her heart hadn't stopped aching since last night, no matter how much she'd wanted it to. It was driving her insane, just continuing to picture a broken Farkle in her arms. Now all she could do was stare between her phone, and everything else occurring around her.

''What's gotten into you?'' Maya asked, coming out from the back room with a two plates of salad in her hands.

Riley sighed, closing the register and leaning her back against the counter. ''I don't know what to do''

''About Farkle?'' Maya chuckled, raising an eyebrow. ''It's not that hard, Riles. Just call him up and tell him you wanna see him before you go all nuts''

''It's not that easy-''

''Yes, it is. The world isn't black and white, but this is'' Maya grinned, walking over to a table of two and setting down the plates. ''You want to call him, so in the wise words of Shia LaBeouf, just do it''

Riley ran her fingers over her dark hair, biting her lower lip as her gaze lowered. Placing her hand into her pants' pocket and feeling her cell phone, she was about to take it out when she decided against it. ''I can't, Maya. I told him I didn't want to be friends-''

''shh, don't say anything else'' Riley could only watch as her blonde best friend grabbed ahold of her wrist, dragging her to the back room and shoving her into the bathroom.

''you're going to call him, and you're going to tell him how you feel, and you'll be okay. I promise'' With a wink and a quick grin, Maya locked the door and she found herself finally alone.

''Alright, Riles, you can do this''

Riley took a deep breath, pulling her phone out and dialing his number (might she mention, Maya had put it in there without her permission while she was asleep). The ringing was agony, just knowing that Farkle could choose to answer or not, and right when she was ready to give up, she was met with his bittersweet voice.

''Hello?''

''Farkle?'' she managed to choke out, throwing her head back against the wall and silently slapping her forehead with her free hand.

She heard a sound of something falling, followed by his surprised tone. ''Riley?''

''Hey, I'm not intruding or anything, right?''

''No, of course not. What's up? Is something wrong?''

''No, nothing like that'' she chuckled to herself, turning to look at her dismantle appearance on the mirror. ''Listen, this might sound insane, but I can't stop thinking about what happened last night''

''Really?''

''Yeah. I just- I don't know-'' she laughed quietly. ''I don't know what it is, but I keep thinking about everything you said, and-''

Riley huffed. ''Never mind, I'm sorry for wasting your time and bothering you with this-''

''Do you want to take a walk?'' Farkle said, so spontaneous and desperate, it had caught her completely off guard. ''I can pick you up after your shift, and we can talk a little bit about it. Its okay if you don't want to, though''

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