by Ebony Scott
Two childhood friends get trapped in an elevator together. Minor swearing
|I was late to class. That never happens, I don't even know what happened, one second it was 8:30 am, the next it was 8:57 am. I slammed my hand on the elevator button repetitively until it showed up and dashed inside, there was already someone inside but I paid no attention to them and hit the button for the top floor. Once the door had shut I glanced over to the other person in the elevator.
It was Ashton Price. School bad boy, school's biggest player, school's quarterback... And my ex-best friend. I know what you're thinking, it was his fault, he did something stupid and fucked up our friendship. But no, it was me, I did the stupid thing and messed up our friendship. By the time I realised it, it was too late to do anything about it.
I sent a small smile to Ashton and leaned my forehead against the cold glass mirrors. I took a deep breath and watched the numbers count up, 'what sort of school has five floors anyways'. Then suddenly, the elevator jerked and stopped halfway between floors 3 and 4.
"Son of a bitch!" Ashton swore as I fell into him. The lights flickered off replaced by the red emergency ones.
"Are you okay?" His hot breath fans my face and I nod shakily, pulling away from him. He pulls his phone out of his back pocket and swears again, "No bars. We're in the middle of the fucking school, how is there no connection?" I didn't know if he wanted an answer or not, but I was too busy banging on the doors trying to get someone’s attention. "It’s no use, the elevator is soundproof." He slides down the wall until his butt hits the floor and leans his head back.
I do the same opposite him and watch him, he'd changed since the last time we'd been alone together. His hair was longer and darker, he was considerably more masculine and his eyes are deeper.
"Stop staring at me." He'd never sounded more unfriendly towards me, but I couldn't blame him, I would too.
"How have you been Ash?" He looks up at me with a look that clearly said, ' the fuck would you care?' I sighed and slumped against the wall.
'He really hates me', I thought. I started thinking about the times when we were friends, I don't know why, I probably should have been thinking of ways to get out of here, maybe it was the fact that I was trapped with Ash in the elevator or the fact Ash really hates me, all I know is I haven't had the time to think about it. I thought about when we first met.
"Do you remember when we first met? I was hiding behind my dad’s legs and you came up to me, stuck your meaty, oversized toddler hand out and said, 'Hi I'm Ashton, my favourite food is chocolate cake and your pretty.' You couldn't speak properly yet so you said favewit and chocwate and then you said pweety, with an emphasis on the ty."
He let out a small laugh, I wasn't expecting him to say anything, but he continued the story, “You giggled and shook my hand so fast, it hurt. You told me your name and we ran off to play with the building blocks. You kept giggling about our names being the same. Your father freaked out when he noticed you weren't behind him anymore." We were both laughing now.
I thought about the time we pranked the school bully, "What about the time we pranked Tyrone Blake. He chased us around the entire school after we tied his shoes together."
Ashton nodded, "We got suspended for a week, I didn't think he'd fall down the slide." Apparently Ashton wanted to start the story this time, "How about the time when we were at your family barbecue and we accidentally set the hose off on all your parents friends?"
I let a loud laugh escape, "God, we got in so much trouble for that one."
Looking at Ashton, I crawled over and crossed my legs in front of him. He stared at me for a second before scooting forward, crossing his legs too and held his hands out in front of him, I grinned. We used to do this all the time, I had to try and slap his hands at the same time and then we'd switch. The problem was he always managed to move at least one of his hands.
"Oh my god, how are you even this fast!"
He'd managed to pull his hands out milliseconds before mine hit his.
He smirked, "It's because I play a lot of video games. Video games increase your reaction speed by making you have to press the right buttons at nearly impossible speed."
'Did not know that’ I thought, "Do you still have Just Dance and Singstar?"
He nods, "They’re on the game rack, the last time I played them would have been with you. Meghan plays them, she's too young to remember you though, so she's always telling me and I quote, 'Whoever the hell Ley is impossible to beat'. Mum says I should stop swearing around her so much, if I’m going to, do it so she won’t hear it." Ley was what Ashton used to call me, instead of calling me Ash like he was often called.
He pulls his hands back again then grabs my wrists, "I think if you try again, your arms will fall off." I huff in response pulling my mouth into a pout. He laughs and shoves his hands into my shoulders, effectively making me fall back. I kick my feet on to him but immediately pull back when he pulls my shoes off and starts tickling my feet. He pulls me back and attacks my neck and armpits, he knew those were my most ticklish spots.
I squirm under him until he stops tickling me. My laughter catches in my throat when I look up at Ashton, he was straddling me and staring into my eyes intensely. His arms pinned mine above my head and his lips pursed. Then he asked the question I didn't want to hear,
"Why did you do it, Ashley?"
I didn't answer him, I just stared. He looked at me for another minute before climbing off of me and sitting against the wall with a sigh. I push myself up and slide back to the opposite wall.
"I want to know what I did wrong for you to stop talking to me! You never lasted longer than an hour when you were mad at me for one reason or another. Just tell me what I did, that caused you to stop talking to me altogether." He looked broken, "I tried to talk to you so many times, but you just kept ignoring me, so I gave up when I realised you weren't going to break." I couldn't see him well in the red lights, but I could see his hands running through his hair and over his face.
"Ashton." I whisper and his head snaps towards me, "You didn't do anything wrong. I don't want you to blame yourself because I was selfish."
He slides across his wall until he's in front of me and asks, "Why did you stop talking to me, Ley?"
I feel tears slide my face, I wipe them away and take a deep breath, "I was jealous." My voice is barely above a whisper, but I know he can hear me, "You just got your first girlfriend, Taylor, and you were spending more time with her than with me and I couldn't stand it. I thought it would easier to ignore you than to watch you make out with Taylor all the time."
Ashton moves closer again; he's sitting in front of me now. He reaches out and pries my hands from my face, holding onto them, "Why didn't you say anything? We broke up a couple weeks later, when I found out she was cheating on me." He snorts, "God, even back then she was a slut."
I bite back a laugh and shrug, "I thought it was too late to fix things." He moves once more, he's right next to me.
"It's never been too late. No matter how hard I'm going to try, I'm still going to forgive you in ten seconds or less." He gives me a look and waits for me to answer. Then I realised, now was my chance to fix things.
"I'm sorry I was an idiot. I'm sorry I ignored you and I'm sorry for everything in general."
Ashton sighed, "I guess I forgive you then." He said teasingly, but I knew he really meant it.
My head fell onto his shoulder and I asked, "What time is it?" He leaned forward slightly and pulled his phone out of his butt pocket,
"Five to ten, how can nobody have noticed you disappeared, I mean, I'm always late for class or not turning up, you, on the other hand, are never late for class. Or miss a day unless your seriously sick."
I laugh and pat his shoulder, "Maybe they're getting help right now?"
Ashton snorts and shakes his head, "I doubt it. The people here are so unobservant it's ridiculous." I nod my head, "I get what you mean." I don't elaborate.
After five minutes of silence, Ashton breaks it, "Ryan's cheating on you, you know. I saw him in the spare classroom on the first floor."
He looks at me incredulously, "Then why are you still with him?"
"I was hoping it wasn't true. That whoever told me was kidding. I don't even remember who told me, it was at a party, Ryan went to get drinks, he took half an hour though. I was in denial."
He looks at me again, with pursed lips, "You're going to dump him, right?" I shrug, "I don't know." But I did know, I was too scared to break up with Ryan.
He pushes himself off the wall and shouts, "You don't know? He's cheating on you, Ashley! Why wouldn't you break up with him?" I shrug, trying to think of an answer but suddenly the elevator jerks and begins to ascend again. I stand up so I'm face to face with Ashton, he's glaring at me. "The reason I started sleeping around with girls was because I liked you and you started ignoring me. So I tried to get over you, by hooking up with other girls."
I gulp down the lump in my throat and croak out, "Did it work?" But the doors ding open to find a crowd of students in the hall and a repair man playing with the wires in the buttons panel.
Ashton doesn't answer, but he didn’t need to. I knew the answer. He just turns and storms out of the elevator pushing past the crowd and disappearing.
"Ashley!" A male voice calls out, I turn and find Ryan standing there with his arms crossed. He has a worried expression but I can see through it. I walk out of the elevator and grab his hand, with a final glance in the direction Ashton went off in, I pulled Ryan away from the scene.
ONE WEEK LATER...
I'd hardly seen Ashton over the past week. Every time he saw me he immediately turned in the other direction, down a different corridor. When I tried to follow him, he'd already disappeared.
I was meeting Ryan at Biology in a couple minutes so I was making my way through the almost empty hallway of the first floor. It was the freshman floor and all of them were in the middle of a class right now. I was passing by the spare classroom when I heard a moan. I froze, there was another one followed by a name, "Ryan!" I shoved the door open.
Ryan and Taylor Reynolds, Ashton's cheating ex-girlfriend, were pressed up against a desk without their shirts. Ryan pulls away when he hears the door open and drops Taylor's legs from around his waist when he sees me. "Uh, Ashley! It's not what it looks like!"
Taylor rolls her eyes and picks her shirt up from the ground, "Come find me when you've sorted out this little," She looks between us, "lovers quarrel." She slams the door behind her.
I turn back to Ryan and start screaming at him, "What the fuck, Ryan? You're suck a fucking dick! You’re a stupid son of a bitch! Why the fuck would you do that to me, you sick bastard!" I was expecting Ryan to apologise and tell me it wasn't what it looked like, even if it quite clearly was, but he didn't. He took three large steps towards me and I felt a sting on the side of my face as it swung sideways. I cradled my cheek in my hands and I could feel tears running down my face.
"We're fucking done! Don't come near me ever again." It came out as a whisper because of the pain, but I turned on my heels and rushed out of the classroom.
I had to find Ashton. He was the only person I wanted to see right now, but I have no idea where he could be. I came across a group of freshman when I turn a corner, I was breathing heavily from running but I managed to squeeze out a sentence, "Have any of you seen Ashton Price in the last twenty minutes?"
They look at me with wide eyes, probably wondering why the student body president was talking to them in tears. One of the finally speaks up, "He walked through here like a minute ago, he was going towards the elevators." I started running again, throwing a 'thank you' over my shoulder.
If I ran fast enough I should be able to make it to the elevators before he got on. So sprinting down the halls I turned right down the science classes, then I turned into the art classes hall where the elevators reside.
Ashton was standing in front of them with his arms crossed. My feet were slamming on the concrete floors causing him to turn around. The elevator dinged and he stepped inside, and started pressing one of the buttons trying to get it to close faster. I managed to slip in just before they closed. He groaned loudly and asked, "What do you want, Ashley?"
I glanced the buttons to see he was going to floor 5, giving me approximately 30 seconds. A couple tears fell down my cheeks as I started talking really fast, "I'm sorry... Again. I was an idiot for not listening to you and I am sorry. I walked in on Ryan and Taylor half naked in the spare classroom and when I yelled at him, he slapped me." Ashton took me by surprise and grabbed my face, looking closely at the hand print that was no doubt still there. "And you were the only person I wanted to see, and I'm sorry. Also I got jealous because I liked you too, actually I still like you, even after all-"
I didn't get to finish my sentence because Ashton had pulled me into him, slipped his arms around my waist and rested his forehead against mine, "After school, I'm going to beat the shit out Ryan for hitting you, and then we're going back to my place. But right now," He paused, his hot breath fanning my face, "I'm going to kiss you."
I didn't even have time to nod, before his mouth crashed down roughly on mine. My arms slipped around his neck, as we kissed, it was passionate but not overheated, Ashton ran his tongue over my bottom lip and found its way into my mouth, dancing with my own. He pulled me impossibly closer and when the doors dinged open he just reached over and pressed another floor, without breaking the kiss.