one.

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"when everyone goes home, you're stuck with yourself." - layne staley

**
The air was warm and showed no signs of the autumn months that were soon to follow. Take Me Home Country Roads, a staple of any college town in the south, drifted from inside the bar. My head was light from the alcohol which was making its way through my bloodstream. I leaned against the railing of the deck and took a slow sip of my Long Island ice tea, smiling as I watched Ashton make his way over to me from inside.

"Rookie, I love you." He draped an arm across my shoulder, voice raised due to the pounding music.

"Ash, you love everyone when you're intoxicated." I grinned, leaning into his chest. A light breeze was a welcome occurrence after emerging from the crowded mass of sweaty bodies inside. It was the deck portion of Bailey's alone that caused Ashton and I to frequent the bar.

"Okay, but I love you the most." He put a finger to his lip. "Don't tell anyone."

"I promise I won't let it slip." My laugh came easy due to the liquor. Drunk Ashton was always amusing until of course, he wasn't.

"Good, you know Calum can get jealous." He responded, finishing off the drink in his hand. The mention of Calum brought up another thought to mind.

"Why couldn't Michael come out tonight?" I asked, looking out into the parking lot. The line outside snaked around and I found myself grateful that Ashton preferred to drink early.

"Why do you need Michael? Am I not enough?" Ashton pulled away and gave a look of mock hurt.

"Of course you're enough," I reassured him. "I was just wondering why he didn't come with Calum"

"Well, he told me Michael was too high to leave the house." It would be a lie if I said my chest didn't fall at the news Michael wouldn't be joining us. Having feelings for Calum's roommate was not ideal and I wasn't doing all that great of a job covering up my infatuation.

"But he sends his love." A voice said from behind me. I turned to find Calum approaching us with a half-grin, drink in hand. "He was so distraught he couldn't be here to see you, Brooklyn. I could hear him crying as I left."

"Shut the fuck up, Calum," I retorted, watching the boy laugh.

"Can't you guys just get along," Ashton said as he took the drink from Calum's hand.

"We do get along." I said at the same time that Calum answered with a blatant 'no'.

"It's my breakup-versary and you guys are fighting," Ashton whined. Ah yes, the reason we were all out drinking on a Tuesday night. It was the one year anniversary of Ashton's breakup with Julia, a girl he was very much still madly in love with.

"Just like you and Julia. It's part of the festivities." Calum clasped his hands together and smiled, his words gaining him a dirty look.

"I'm sorry Ash, we'll be on our best behavior. Scouts honor." I held up three fingers which resulted in Calum rolling his eyes. He pulled out his phone and focused his brown eyes back on Ashton.

"Hey, mate. Is it cool if a friend of mine joins us?" The raven-haired boy asked.

"The more the merrier. Maybe he'll be interested in our friend Rookie over here." Ashton elbowed me in the side, spilling his drink on my shirt. "Oops. Sorry about that."

"Don't worry about it," I said, having worn my old sweatshirt tonight for a reason. "But I don't think setting me up with Calum's friend is necessary."

"Besides the fact that Brooklyn is dressed like a homeless man, Luke is already in a thing right now." Calum pointed out.

"There you go, no need to wingman tonight." I found that ignoring Calum's jabs was a much better strategy than trying to argue about them.

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