RAMONA: How'd you even get away from Amelia?
SIMON: It's a skill, really.
He shakes his head.
SIMON: But if I'm being honest, I don't think I have. Not really.
Simon looks at his feet and chuckles. They walk in silence for a short while.
RAMONA: What's your story anyway?
Simon furrows his brows.
RAMONA: I mean, with Amelia. What happened there?
SIMON: Oh. We met on set for one of Leo's films.
Ramona looks at him intently.
SIMON: We hung out a lot and I just thought, oh, she's kinda cool. I think I like her. And then there.
RAMONA: (shocked) No, that can't be it. That's too lame. I thought it'd be more serious than that.
SIMON: I'm not kidding!
RAMONA: OK, so why did you break up?
SIMON: We just stopped talking. She was busy with acting and stuff. It wasn't working. She said she was tired all the time, so she'd rather rest on weekends than hang out. So I told myself it was over. She broke it off, eventually. Through text.
RAMONA: You're kidding.
SIMON: Nope. But it worked out in the end.
He looks at her and nudges her in the shoulder. Ramona is too shocked to notice him staring.
RAMONA: Jesus. I thought it was serious! She made it seem so profound and meaningful.
SIMON: I mean, she's an actress, so.
RAMONA: I don't believe you.
RAMONA: There is no way it was that simple. Did you kiss?
SIMON: (flustered) I— what?
RAMONA: Did you?
Ramona quirks an eyebrow.
SIMON: Twice... Just a few times. Nothing more!
SIMON: It really was nothing, Ramona. It didn't mean anything to me.
Ramona avoids his gaze.
RAMONA: Have you heard from Haley recently?
SIMON: Yeah, I saw her at work yesterday.
RAMONA: Is she mad?
SIMON: You have to give her more credit than that. But to answer your question, no. I explained it to her and she understands, but I think she'd appreciate hearing it from you.
SIMON: You've been avoiding her, haven't you?
SIMON: Yeah, she thought as much.
Simon shakes his head.
SIMON: You know she's worried about you, right? She's your friend, too, Ramona. She can just be a little... tough sometimes. But that doesn't mean she doesn't care about you. She still wants to see your movie when it comes out. Which it will, for sure.
RAMONA: Ever since the auditions, it hasn't really felt like it was mine anymore. Like, I get that once you create something and put it out there, it becomes a part of everyone who reads it, you share that with them, you can't claim ownership beyond legality and copyright and all that. But—
They stop. Ramona looks at him.
RAMONA: I thought I'd have a little more control, you know?
Simon nods. Ramona begins to vent, looking everywhere but at him.
RAMONA: I just want it to be perfect. How I saw it in my head. It's my shot, you know? I could help my mom with that money. Winning that would open so many doors for me. But Leo has other ideas, and sometimes they're better so we go with that, and I appreciate all the help he's doing but—
Simon places both hands on her shoulders to stop her.
SIMON: Hey, hey, hey now, hey now. Take it easy, Atlas.
Ramona furrows her eyebrows at him.
SIMON: You don't have to carry all the weight of the world on your shoulders.
Ramona's lips part slightly. Simon squeezes her shoulders lightly then lets go.
SIMON: Are you hungry?
YOU ARE READING
Ramona & The Silver Screen | ✔︎Teen Fiction
In which Ramona Ramirez tries to make a movie and discovers more about herself and the people around her than she would have ever hoped to. Extended summary inside.