Chapter Twelve

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A little while later, we decided we were hungry and the snacks I brought weren't doing much about that, so we skipped downstairs and ordered a pizza.

We were sprawled across one of the couches in the living room while we waited, each of us on opposite ends, facing each other with our legs crossed. We had spent the past hour talking about all sorts of things. At the moment, the conversation had drifted to the topic of her friends back in New York, and she was telling me all about them.

"So Carson was my closest friend, but things didn't end very well between us when I left. We'd known each other since we were little, but over the years she turned into somewhat of a bully. She was still my friend at the end of the day."

I nodded along, and she went on. "Emmett and Elsie were twins, and for some reason there was always a disgusting rumor going around that they were having incestuous sex. Gross and obviously not true. But Lake was probably the coolest of the bunch. He didn't give a shit about anything and was super spontaneous. He always did whatever he felt like doing, whenever he felt like it. He was fun to be around." She paused, her eyes drifting up to my face from where they had been focused on the thread she was picking at on her sleeve.

For some reason, hearing about her old life and the people in it fascinated me. It was so different from things here in this boring little town, and the people didn't seem like anyone I'd associate with her. It was weird, almost like she belonged here more than there.

"That's cool. The people there sound so different from here."

She nodded. "They were. The private school I went to in upper Manhattan was full of rich snobs and celebrity kids. They wanted to be gossip girl so bad, it was embarrassing. But I never really had a close friend I could just talk to like this. It's nice."

I smiled at her brightly, my heart swelling with happiness again. She saw me as a close friend, someone she could talk to about anything, and all I wanted was just to always be there for her.

"As much as you always talk about how much you miss New York, it almost sounds like you didn't really like it." I commented, and she shook her head.

"I only hated school, but other than that my heart still lives in the city. I miss the night life and the 24/7 light pollution, the constant noise you have to train yourself not to hear. I miss how erratic life was, how you could never predict what would happen when you woke up. I miss sitting by the water front and just staring at the skyline for hours. I miss the indie book stores on almost every corner. I miss hearing hundreds of different languages around me every day. I miss the thrill of sneaking out with my friends at night and doing stupid shit. I-"

She laughed a bit, a red tinge coloring her cheeks. "I'm ranting again, but you catch my drift. It's just completely different here. I mean, life is so... slow. Not necessarily in a bad way, I'm just really not used to it."

I gazed at her in wonder. Watching the way her eyes sparkled when she talked about the things she loved. It made my chest feel tight, and I realized I wanted to be among those things. I wanted her to look this content and in love when she talked or thought about me.

I blinked a few times, frowning at myself slightly. Here I was again, getting way ahead of myself. I had to stop and slow down before I got hurt. I pushed those thoughts to the back of my mind again and returned my gaze to her face.

She looked wistful, and I almost felt bad for her. Maysville was all I'd known my whole life, so I didn't have anywhere else to compare it to. Sure, I travelled occasionally but I'd lived here since the day I opened my eyes.

But I always knew I wanted to live in a big city, mainly because I was itching for some some kind of an adventure, and I just knew I wasn't made for the quite town life. I wanted more, and the way she was describing New York only made me even more eager to go.

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