I couldn’t help but smile whenever I got a text from Dani. She had just sent me one, asking if I wanted to go to the Humor and Hijinks Festivals with her. I grinned, thinking, Yes, of course! But I toned it down in my actual text to ‘sure’. Wait…was that too toned down? I didn’t want her to think I’m not interested! Watcher, Adelaide, stop overthinking it! Dani did things like this to me. Made me freak out over a text message, and at the same time, smile, over one. Whenever she even messaged me, even a hi, I smiled. Nobody had ever made me feel this way…
Once I got there, I looked around to see if she’d made it yet. It didn’t take very long. Dani had gotten there before me, and was now waving me over.
“Hey! I hope you weren’t waiting too long!” I said. Darn, that was way too excited, right? Gosh! Could it be any more obvious I liked her?
“No, only about 5 minutes.” She laughed and motioned over to the brighter, yellow-themed side. “Want to join the Jokesters?” I was still feeling relief that she hadn’t noticed that my excitement in being here with her had flowed over into the way I’d talked.
“Yeah!” We walked over to the drink fountain, almost overflowing with a suspicious golden colored liquid. “What the heck is that?” I asked.
Dani smirked. “I have no idea.”
“As long as it isn’t poison, right?” I joked. Dani’s face flashed with a feeling I couldn’t place. And just as soon as I saw it, it was gone. It was probably the light, but I was almost sure that had meant something to her. “Dani?”
“What?” She looked back around. “Yeah, I’m sure it isn’t poison.”
We each took one of the glass-looking plastic cups to fill with the drink.
“It’s…tea?” I asked. It sure tasted like tea. I didn’t have tea often, but it didn’t taste like anything else. It wasn’t the super-sugary drink I thought it would be. I’d never been to one of the San Myshuno festivals before, but they were more legit than I figured they’d be. People talked about the festivals a lot, they were sort of famous…everywhere.
Dani sipped her own, and nodded. “I think it is. No idea what flavor, though!”
“So, what have you been doing this past week?” I asked, and immediately regretted it. That sounded way too stalker-ish. Like, what have you been doing, where were you, huh??? That is just way too weird, isn’t it? Well, I already said it, didn’t I?
“Well, I was looking at some job opportunities, and I met some people around.” She smiled. Thank the Watcher she didn’t think I was being weird! When she said she met people, she did mean as friends, right? I’m not a jealous person, or like some crazy ex, hell, I’m not even a freaking ex! I just…can’t imagine her with another person. I don’t think I could deal with that. But, of course, I would! If it made Dani happy, I would do it.
When we’d been talking before, I learned she moved here because her employer let her go, and because of that she was free to go anywhere, and she’d liked small towns. Also, being a beachside town was a plus. It was the perfect place for a new start. It was where my family had gotten ours, all that time ago, when I was a little girl.
“What about you?” Dani asked. “What have you been up to?” And I realized my question hadn’t been that weird, after all, Dani had just asked me practically the same question and I didn’t think she was a creepy stalker!
Once we finished our drinks, which were surprisingly good, actually, we walked over to where most of the people were, listening to a young woman tell jokes. It was, after all, the Humor and Hijinks Festival. It wasn’t a surprise to see someone telling jokes, but it was a surprise she was good!
“Hey, she’s pretty good!” Dani said to me, smiling. I’d just thought the same thing, after all, I couldn’t have thought up jokes like this! I was just enjoying this moment, being here with her, having fun. The only thing was, I wanted more moments like this. Suddenly, we both laughed at the next joke, and the backs of our hands brushed. I had the split second idea to actually grab ahold of her hand, really hold it. But of course, I waited too long overthinking it, and the moment was gone.
I wanted to be able to hold her hand. Walk around in public, holding her had for the world to see, to be able to say that this amazing woman was mine. But that was but a dream. I had to focus on reality. And the reality was, Dani and I were friends…and that was all we’d ever be. I had plenty of friends, and Dani would become another one of them. I’d find another woman who I’d be happy with, and raise a family with. But, part of me was saying, ‘she’s perfect for you, and you’ll never be completely happy if you don’t even try, and you don’t want to get married and start a family with another woman, you want to with her!’ And yet, the realistic, reasonable voice was saying, ‘don’t ruin a friendship for a fantasy.’ And I found myself following the latter. What I was imagining was just that, a fantasy. It wasn’t real. It never had been real, and it never will be. I’m usually the optimist. That’s me, the one who always looks on the bright side, thinks things will be okay…but I’m realizing it’s easy to do that, until something really, truly matters to you. Because then, you’re too scared to break what you already have.
“What is this?” I asked, staring at this crazy looking contraption.
Dani looked it over, then burst out laughing.
“What?” I asked, smiling.
“It’s a bubble blower.”
I probably made the most confused face ever at that. “What did you call it?”
“A bubble blower.” She repeated. “I’ve heard a few things about them.”
I looked at her, then back at it. “Is it safe?”
She laughed. “I sure hope so.”
Now that I think about it, I think I have heard a few things. They aren’t really a big deal yet, but I figure they will be, especially after appearing in one of the San Myshuno festivals! Now, of course, I wish I had paid more attention to the small number of articles talking about these things. Too late now, I guess. I’m sitting on some miniature ottoman, staring straight at a thing I’m pretty sure I’m supposed to put my mouth on. This is so un-sanitary. Like, seriously, how many people have put their mouths on this?
“Adelaide? Are you trying it, or are you gonna stare at it the whole time?”
I looked back to Dani, who was already reaching for the rope-thing and mouthpiece. “I’ll do it if you do!” I said, enthusiastically.
She wasted no time. Before I knew it, she had taken a long sip, and was blowing bubbles with seemingly no effort. I had to admit, it looked cool. Was this going to be the new bubble blowing? Instead of blowing through a stick with a soapy film on it, you’d just blow? I snicker at the idea of someone hauling one of these giant things out of their house just to blow bubbles. Once Dani couldn’t blow bubbles anymore, she looked at me. “Your turn!”
I took the silicone-feeling cord off the hook and just stared at it. “So how does this work?” I asked. Did I suck in?
Dani giggled. Gosh, her laugh was so sweet. “It’s so easy! Just…drink from it!”
I sighed. Here goes! I put it up to my lips and sucked in. Sweet tasting liquid entered my mouth. I knew the next part, blow out. I can do this, how hard can it be? I’ve never seen anyone fail at doing it, not like I’ve ever seen anyone doing it at all… I blew out, watching Dani’s expression, and promptly started coughing it up. Was this really happening? Was I actually choking on bubble blower-stuff in front of her? Watcher, this was so damn embarrassing! At least I managed to make some bubbles…
“Addie! Are you ok?”
I looked up very slowly at Dani. She and Lexie were the only people who still even called me Addie. The two most important people in my life right now. Once I thought I could say any words without coughing, I said, “Yeah, I’m ok.”
“Good.” Her serious face quickly faded into one of happiness. She poked me playfully. “Because I don’t know what I’d do without you.”
I took a minute to process what just happened. It was the most romantic thing she’s ever said to me. Could it have even been a flirt? Ugh, Adelaide! You like this woman so much, anything even remotely romantic is suddenly her flirting with you? Get a freaking grip! It was just as easily something you could say to a friend. It was, at the very very least, nice to hear it, even if it was a joke. But for some reason, I wasn’t so sure it was.
“Come on, let’s get a seat for the fireworks.” She grinned, and pointed to an empty table.
“Fireworks?” I asked.
“Yeah! That’s what those boxes are for.” She pointed to the little boxes that did look like they had rockets in them. “They light them after announcing the winners of the contest.” Huh. I’d never seen fireworks before, never mind fireworks being lit!
“Oh no,” I started, “I didn’t do anything to help our team!”
She laughed. “Do you think many people did? I think our team will forgive you. Not just you, us.”
Us. I wanted to hear her say that again. I’d said it many times, in my head. Us. It seemed to take them forever to get the fireworks going. As we waited, and as the night went on, it was getting a little chilly, and so we gravitated toward each other. It was simple, and probably just instinct, but being that close to her, just made me wish for more.
I looked into her eyes probably longer than I should have, but not long enough that it got weird. The announcer finally got up on the stage.
“The winning team tonight is…the Pranksters!” He announced. “Congratulations, Pranksters!”
I turned to Dani. “It’s no surprise we didn’t win.”
“I know, right! I think I would have been more surprised if we did win!”
So no, we didn’t end up winning. But that really wasn’t what this night was about, was it? This night was about fun, and happiness. And for me, damn, it just cemented my feelings about Dani. The whole night, I was just imagining what could be. What I really wanted. What I wouldn’t dare to do. It’s crazy to think one person can do this to you. It really is. I walk by tons of people, I work with tons of people, and some of them I could really care less about. Yeah, some of them are nice, and I’d actually notice if they moved away, or something, but then you meet that one person who you can’t stop thinking about, who you fully and utterly fall for, and sometimes they don’t even know it. I know now what people mean when they say ‘one true love’ because I don’t think I could ever feel what I feel about Dani with anyone else. I just wish it would be that simple to tell her how I feel with no consequences. She could be my happily ever after, yes… but I’m too scared to risk what we already have.
A/N: Wow, I think this is my longest chapter ever! I just had to put in this song that perfectly encapsulates Adelaide’s feelings right now. It’s called ‘Sleepover’ by Hayley Kiyoko 😄 I love her music! ❤️ Anyway, this is the part of her song that really is what this chapter showed! “Even when you’re next to me, it’s not the way I’m picturing…” I don’t know how to quote things ‘correctly’ so…I gave credit which is what I think you need to do! 🙂 I hope I didn’t make Adelaide seem too crazy! I’ve never fallen for someone like she did for Dani, so I’m trying to get it right!