“How are you?” Ollie asks.
‘What do you mean? Im fine.”
Ollie sighs. “You keep saying that.”
“What is that supposed to mean?” I lay down on the floor and face my friend.
Ollie throws their hands up in exasperation. “Byn has been being an as and talking shit about you behind your back! And you're asking me what up?”
They look at me
“And the soccer party,” they whisper beneath their breath.
“I mean she's just heartbroken. Honestly, I feel really guilty, I wish I could help her.”
“You want to help her? Why?”
“Because she's a person and she still deserves to be treated with respect,” I say matter of factly.
“Ria! Listen to me it's like you've forgotten everything that's happened.”
They catch me off guard. And I gape at them. “I..”
Ollie looks at me and cocks their head realization hitting them. “You've pushed it all down haven't you?”
“Ria, you can't hide from the truth forever.”
But the lies stuck in my throat made it hard to breathe memories started creeping at the edge of my memory flashing before my eyes and before I could do anything they surrounded me and drag me under.
The fire crackles in front of me the red light casting a halo over Ollie’s head. They're sitting on my lap and laying on my chest. I stroke their long orange hair and smile when Ava comes up to us. We’re at the end of the year soccer party and byn is being a complete asshole dragging all of their friends out of the room as soon as Ollie gets anywhere near me. “Byn wants to talk to you,” Ava says.
“Oh, Byn wants to talk to me or just talk shit about me behind my back.”
Ava purses her lips. “Byn wants to talk to you.” She says again.
Ollie stands up and helps me to my feet. “Good luck, I suppose.”
“Thanks.” give them a bleak grin and follow Ava through the yard. As soon as the group came outside and Ollie decided to sit on me Byn took all of her friends and retreated to the darkness where you could hear them whispering from a distance.
I find Byn behind the safety of the bushes. “Can we have some privacy?” Byn asks Ava. Ava takes Ellie who was talking with Byn and they both throw glances our way before walking out.
“What's up?” I ask as nicely as possible. Because she may be being a bitch but sinking to her level isn’t going to make anything better.
“You said I could talk to you when I was ready. Scream, yell talk shit about you.”
“Well, Im ready to talk to you.”
“Okay then go ahead.”
Byn looks thrown off by my cooperation but she takes a deep breath and looks at me. “I’m just going to say you're being a really shity person.”
“We broke up less than a month ago and you're already dating Ollie my best friend? Do you know how shity that is? Do you know how much this is hurting me?”
I take a deep breath and try to contain everything I want to say. “Ollie and I aren't dating okay? I don't see why you keep thinking that.”
“And Ollie was never your best friend they were always mine,” I whisper under my breath but Byn doesn't hear me.
“Oh yeah sure your not dating you just hang out every day, take selfies of yourself snuggling, and hold hands wherever you go.”
“Byn, I don't know what you're talking about.”
“You guys were at the fun center together.”
I remember passing Byns friends Fia and Claire they must have seen us together. But we weren't even holding hands I was probably just dragging Ollie around. And they didn't even see the ‘worst’ of it when we were cuddling on the couch and riding the one-person motorcycle game and I had to have my arms around Ollie’s waist the whole time. But I don't add that because that would probably just piss Byn off more.
“So your just having your friends update you on everything we do now?”
Byn ignores me. “ And Ava walked in on you guys alone together in Ivy’s bedroom and your hand was right on their chest and like im sure you guys weren't doing anything.. But it's hard not to assume.”
“Byn, we weren't doing anything okay? We’re not even dating!”
“Yeah sure, just everyone thinks your dating, all of my friends, everyone on the soccer team, even both of your parents does that say anything?”
“You can lie all you want but you have no idea how much this is hurting me. Like I don’t want to make this seem like it’s your fault. But you’re the reason I almost cut myself.”
My breath catches in my throat and my eyes go wide. “And you know my stepfather and how he doesn’t care about me at all but he caught me and now he’s really concerned and he saw how you guys were just hanging all over each other at the game and he thinks our being a pretty big bitch. Like this is so fucked up Ria. And Im hurt because I thought you were someone I could trust. And I finally feel special and then out of the blue you tell me you like someone else and then you start dating them less than a week later do you have any idea how shity that is?”
“I can't even deal with you right now.” Byn turns away from me.
I turn around and run back through the dark their words echoing in my mind.
Bitch, shity, asshole, you're the reason, your the reason
Your the reason i almost cut myself.
A hand on my arm brings me back to the present.
“Shit.” Whisper. “I have to go to school tomorrow.”
“Indeed you do.” Ollie looks me up and down again. “So how are you?”
“Honestly, I don't even know.”