It’s been a month since school started. I still don’t like it much, but it’s better with my friends here. Since that first day when I learned that Kunal is my PE teacher I made it a point to meet with him and Charlie. So, for a few times Charlie, Matt and I met to talk mountains and then we went out with our significant others. Sam was uncomfortable the first time, but that was only until Kunal joined us. By now he and Matt get along well and to my surprise Vicky was the tattoo artist who did his tattoo. From then on everything seemed to be more relaxed between us.
Last week Adele dragged me and the other girls to go dress shopping for the Homecoming Dance. I didn’t think it was that important and at first I didn’t want to go. Sam was very sweet about it. He asked if I even wanted to go and then he asked me to go with him, formally, just like the gentleman he is. The dance is in two days from now and I had to promise Adele to give me the whole girly experience, whatever that means. On Friday, the teachers will allow us a half day because of the dance and apparently all the girls need to get ready. I can’t understand what could possibly take that long to get ready.
“Hey, babe,” Sam says as he sits down next to me at our lunch table.
“Hey,” I say. He kisses me softly and rests his forehead on mine.
“How was your day so far?” he asks.
“Did you hear about Ethan?” I ask.
“Yeah,” he says.
Ethan, being his usual asshole-self, commented that I lived so long on mountains that I didn’t know how to act around people. He is still pissed because I beat him up and tries to salvage whatever bully reputation he had. Derek immediately stepped in and defended me and when Ethan commented that I probably give Derek sugar, Derek punched him in the face. Fortunately, no teacher was around to see that and Derek isn’t in trouble right now.
“Derek was really brave and helpful,” I say looking at my friend.
“Hey, you are like a sister to me. What are big brothers for?” he asks grinning.
“You know, I’m really glad Sam didn’t see me as a friend. I have this thing about me that makes all the guys wanna be my brothers and uncles,” I say and they both laugh.
“I couldn’t see you as my sister even if I wanted to,” Sam says and kisses my temple.
“I’m glad. I have way too many brothers,” I say with a chuckle and both guys laugh again. Soon the rest of our friends sit down and we discuss the dance. Again. I’m so tired of this. I lean against Sam’s shoulder and he wraps his arm around my waist.
“You okay?” he asks.
“Yeah. This talk about the dance is just so boring,” I say and he chuckles.
“Tell me about it,” Justin says having overheard us.
“Don’t let Liz hear you say that,” Sam tells his friend.
“God, no,” he says looking panicked at his girlfriend.
“I just can’t understand why they get so excited,” I say.
“That’s because you are cool,” Justin says whispering.
“Sometimes I wish I was normal like them,” I say sighing.
“You are normal, babe,” Sam corrects me. “You are just not that into dancing and parties.”
“That’s not it. I can dance and God knows I know how to party. Although the parties I usually go to end up with everyone half-naked and shitfaced.”
“What kind of parties are these?” Justin asks interested.
“Usually on mountains,” I say.
“Damn. I really should start mountain climbing,” he says and both Sam and I laugh.
“What’s so funny? Did you even hear what I said?” Liz asks Justin angrily. Oops. He turns around and tries to save his ass.
“That true?” Sam asks.
“About the parties?” I ask looking up at him and he nods. “Yeah, kind of. Sometimes we get really drunk and really naked,” I say grinning.
“You’re lying,” he says amused.
“Maybe. There’s only one way to find out,” I say.
“You need to join us sometime. Not for a big climb, but maybe a few days hike. What do you say?” I ask him.
“Sure. But only if you want me there. I don’t want you to invite me because you feel obligated,” he tells me serious. I lean up and kiss his jaw, the stubble tickling me.
“I want you to come. I wouldn’t have asked otherwise,” I reassure him. He nods. “How about we go for a little hike ourselves? We can leave Saturday morning and come back Sunday evening. It wouldn’t be a long hike, but we would be together and alone. There is this cabin I know that we could rent,” I tell him.
“You really want that? You and me alone?” he asks with a raised eyebrow.
“Yeah. Why is that so odd?”
“I don’t know.”
“I wanted you to experience it first hand and I know how awkward it is to be the new person in the group. We could invite Matt and Vicky or Charlie and Kunal, but the cabin is a one-room place and I really wanted to be alone with you,” I tell him and try to keep a straight face. I know he never asked me and he never even hinted, but I’m sure he wants us to be together. I’ve been ready for a while now and I know I can trust him completely and I love him. But we never had the chance to be alone. I’m no fool. My first time won’t be as magical as advertised in the romantic movies, but with Sam I’m sure whatever pain I’ll feel it’ll be worth it.