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Romance Coming of Age Teens & Young Adult

“This is my life now. I have climbed this hill, and now I will die upon it”, Griffith falls onto the slant. He lets out an exaggerated groan as he sprawls out on the ground. Sanya was tired, and Griffith's whining and teasing on this hike had finally gotten to her. Her impatience was often exaggerated by his carefree attitude. 

“We’ve hiked three miles, it’s only been an hour.” Sanya pulls out the map and scans it. Griffith had wrangled the two together for a project for their anthropology class. She knew this would mean he would follow her around flirting with her, while she did most of the work. Her interest and loyalty to an ex-boyfriend had not deterred him. It instead had only propelled him to hang around her more and provide some form of companionship while she studied. 

“It’s been a very exhausting hour, to be fair.” He said humming and smiling, he had a masochistic enjoyment of her wrath. It seemed to enthrall him. He liked her insults more than he liked any other woman’s compliments.

“No it hasn't Griffith, you just drink too much and barely exercise.” His gentle expression changed to annoyance at this. Sanya tried to ignore him at this point, hoping he would have no retort to what she was saying. It was quiet, but only for a brief moment, she could feel on the back of her neck that he was going to have something to say.

“That’s a lie, I’m sorry I don’t run for ninety minutes like little-miss-soccer player.” There was an element of contempt and sarcasm in his voice. Sanya would never tell him this, but his chided reaction made her smile. He all too often got to enjoy the rise he got out of her, and now she was able to enjoy the same from him.

Sanya continued to look for the specific artifact on the map lent to them from their anthropology teacher. The weekend assignment had taken them an hour away from the university town, they had parked on a shoulder in the road, leaving the car to look for an abandoned site. This once belonged to a more primitive group of people, a cave with crude, and slightly derogatory paintings. Griffith had been excited about this project. His eyes lit up at the idea of being able to explore a decorated cave. Sanya, on the other hand, was less privy to the idea of the ruins. Her interest laid very little in the idea of seeing other people for what they are but instead seeing what was wrong with them. She was the medical student that any idealistic humanitarian would warn about, a cold girl who saw patients in the same terms as a mechanic saw a car. 

[...]

“There it is!” Griffith shouted, abruptly pointing his finger past Sanya and invaded her space. She made a disgusted face as his finger entered her field of vision. She wasn’t sure if this was on purpose or by accident. Either way, his glee seemed to disregard any social graces he may have had. 

Sanya looked at the structure in front of them. It gave her fear, there was an element of looking into the darkness that told her to run.“That?” Her heart pounded against the skin in her chest cavity. It made her feel pathetic but she would never say anything to him.  

Griffith narrows his eyes, not sure if she is being honest or sarcastic. “Yeah, Sanya. The map clearly says it’s a cave.”

Sanya lightly smacks him in the back, he makes a small grunt and a pestered look that mirrors hers. “I know you, idiot!” She starts to walk in front of him, he gains his footing and catches up with her before sprinting ahead as the heavy backpack swung on his back.

“Can you not call me an idiot!” His feet thud against the ground. 

The duo stood on a hillside, looking down at a cave. It was a dark and cool opening, that looked as though it was going to swallow them into the unknown. The air suddenly became cooler, with an escalating breeze that moved the trees. Sanya felt her hood blow over her head as she grabbed it. Holding it up as all of a sudden the rain began to fall down on the two. 

“Griff, we should maybe go inside for shelter.” As she said this, he felt his heart grow warm and butterflies invade his stomach like insects tend to invade trees and other vegetation. It was disgusting but he enjoyed every second of this. A pet name was nice, even from a frigid girl like her.

“Agreed.” He replied quickly as the two rushed into the cave to quickly get shelter. The two entered the cave in total darkness as a crash of thunder could be heard loudly outside. It is disrupting both of the college students as they freeze. The rain now sounds like a machine gun firing. As the rain fell heavy on the outside of the cave, the chill of the outside slid inside. Griffith smiled as he felt his smaller companion push up against him in reaction to this.

“Scared?” Griffith smiled at her. He knew she would absolutely hate it. He knew that even slightly, he had power over her behind closed doors. The ability to make her melt into a different person. To remove the cold facade that was set up in their initial reactions. She was softer, more vulnerable, and seemed to desire his company on some level. It was different from who she was in a crowd.

“Of course not. I’ve experienced rain before.” She snapped back, still hugging his arm. Her hair soaked and her pout looked dissatisfied with his assumption, as though he should know better. 

“That wasn’t my question.” His voice was low and he leaned his face down into her space. He half expected her to move out of the way, but surprisingly she remained still. He wondered to himself if she truly wanted him, or just wanted to flirt?

Her eyes were met by his, they were now locked into each other's sight in the cold darkness of the cave, with the thunder and the downpour that became a pleasant ambiance in the background of their barely audible conversation. “Well, I’m fine.” Sanya still leaned in, she was expecting something.

“Just fine?” Griffith’s large grin became a soft smile at their intense eye contact. She was studying him, she was observing him as she brought a hand up to his face. His cheek gently cupped in her hand as her slender fingers brushed against his cheek. 

“Yeah...” As her voice was almost inaudible, she leaned into him with eyes closed. Griffith closed his eyes, accepting her affection. Her lips were softly pressed to his. The warmth was a welcome contrast to the stinging rain that would be outside as soon as they left. 

September 19, 2021 03:10

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