“I’m – uhm – worried about you.”
I scoffed jokingly, but as I looked at her eyes I realized she was dead serious.
“Wait, actually? Why?”
“I saw you sticking yourself with a needle… and you were never the kind to do drugs…”
“Yeah… well umm… you know there’s help for that, and – ”
“Lexie, I’m not doing drugs.” Well, at least not the kind she was thinking of. Does she seriously think I’m the kind of person who’d try to get high and all that?
“Come on, Adelaide! I saw you practically doing them!” She insisted, sticking to her understanding of what had happened.
I bit my lip, knowing there was no way she was backing down. “Technically…I am taking drugs. But they’re fertility treatments so I can carry Dani and I’s baby,” I confessed, watching her take it in.
“Oh. Oh my god, and I just like accused you of getting high or something?! Sorry…”
“It probably looked suspicious.”
“Yeah. So, you’re having a baby soon?”
“Hopefully. Look, we didn’t want to say anything yet, because of how tentative it all is.”
“Yeah, I get it. I’m excited for you two,” Lexie grinned excitedly, “I’m gonna be an aunt!”
I smiled. With everything going on, I hadn’t thought about how Lexie would feel about her new role as an aunt once I had a kid, but I was glad she was excited.
“I mean, don’t get me wrong, kids are great, and I’d love to be in your kids’ lives, but I am not interested in my own, not right now,” Lexie continued. She made herself a drink and sat back down, looking at me as if I could read minds.
“What is it now?”
“Can I ask you for a favor?”
Lexie’s friend was coming with me to work today, and I was running a little late. Darn. I slipped on comfortable shoes and quickly put on some makeup before grabbing an energy bar for the drive.
“When’s she coming, Lexie?”
“Any minute now!”
I sighed and took a few quick gulps of orange juice before the door rang. Apparently her friend had been wanting a way into the political world for a while and hadn’t been able to get a steady job. Lexie figured I could help her out, but honestly, it’s up to my boss wether or not she can work here. I’m happy to try, though.
“Hey, I’m Irena. Nice to meet you.”
The drive wasn’t even one bit awkward, like I expected it to be. Irena was a nice woman with strong opinions, most of which I agreed with. I couldn’t believe she’d never advanced very far in this field, she seems like the perfect candidate, eager and ready to defend her beliefs. I got to know her pretty well, her opinions on multiple topics, anyway, within the drive to San Myshuno, where my office was located. This woman would fit right in at our office, and I had a feeling she and Noemi would hit it off. If Noemi ever ended up noticing, anyway.
“….I’m never hosting family parties at my house again…” Noemi continued ranting, completely oblivious that I’d brought someone new today.
“Girl, your family sounds pretty trash, but can we get to work, please?” Irena exclaimed, much to Noemi’s surprise.
“Who are you? Is this your wife, Adelaide?”
“No!” I raised my eyebrow at her. “I’ve shown you pictures of my wife! Irena looks nothing like her!”
“Yeah, sorry. I was up till three cleaning up after my family, so I’m not thinking straight,” Noemi explained, reaching out a hand to Irena. “Hey, sorry.”
I could see the two teenagers looking at us all, through the window in the door in the planning room. They had been doing some really great work recently, getting up posters in all of San Myshuno.
“….so what do you do here?” I heard Irena ask, tuning back into the conversation.
“We think up new ideas for Mayor Norley to possibly implement and to give her advice. We also promote her campaign, and we get free coffee!” Noemi joked, as the coffee was refilled every day, ever if it wasn’t the best.
“Oh, see, coffee! Now I have to work here!”
“Yes, you’re my kind of person! We’re going to be friends already, I know it,” Noemi told her.
Irena furrowed her brows, laughing, “Only if you show me where the coffee is.”
Irena’s great at this. I can’t think a reason why she shouldn’t be hired, we seemingly got more work done today with her guiding us than did all last week. Usually I’m the person making sure everything’s going right, but I just don’t feel like monitoring everyone these days. Sometimes I can barely do my own work, never mind other peoples’ work! Irena would be really fun to work with. She’s determined and passionate. Don’t get me wrong, I love Noemi, she’s a great friend, but she and I don’t have the same approach to work. She’s more carefree and laid back while I’m typically doing all I can, like Irena. Before I knew it, they were dragging me out to a night party at the Red Velvet in Willow Creek.
“I’m serious, they’ve made this place so much more alive!” Noemi exclaimed, dancing better than I ever could.
“Yes! It must have something to do with the new dance floor.”
“Or that extremely hot guy dancing,” Irena laughed, making sultry faces at him.
Noemi nodded her approval. “Go get him, woman!”
Irena punched her playfully, smiling. “Oh yeah, I will.”
“Wait, really -” Noemi stopped mid-sentence as Irena strutted off, making her way over.
“Is she actually…”
“She should,” I replied, watching Irena carefully, “she’s a great woman who should have a good time.”
“Yeah, I know! I hope she has a great time tonight,” Noemi replied, wiggling her eyebrows knowingly.
“Why should I? You’re gay and all, but us straight ladies can definitely see what’s up there,” she enthused, smirking.
Irena walked past us, with said ‘hot guy’ as she winked. As she and the man faded out of view, Noemi took her fixed gaze off of them and turned to me, eyes wide.
“Yes, it did,” I answered, laughing. I hadn’t had this much fun in a while. My life recently had just been filled of serious and important things, and a night like this was just what I needed. Just some time to have fun and live.
Noemi pulled me over to the bar area, still giggling. “Here, drinks are on me.”
I knew for a fact I wasn’t supposed to have alcoholic drinks while I was trying to get pregnant, but I definitely wasn’t ready to tell my work… and Noe isn’t exactly good at keeping her mouth shut.
“Okay, thanks,” I replied simply.
“Order whatever, I’ll pay.”
I skimmed their menu, looking for something not too pricey, especially since I didn’t even plan to drink it.
“I’ll try Zebra Fizz.”
“Nice choice, in fact, I’m gonna have one too,” Noemi commented, handing the bartender her credit card. Noe started talking about her family again, but surprisingly in a good way. She had a good relationship with her younger brother, and I think he’s the only member of her family she’s never dissed before.
“Yeah, him and his girlfriend just got engaged!”
“That’s great! Congratulations to them!”
“Oh, I know. They’re a great couple.”
Once she was looking away, I quickly stood up, and placed the drink in a nearby young man’s hand, winking as I walked away to the dance floor. It was a nightclub, after all, I hope he didn’t think it was too weird.
“Damn, girl, you already finished yours?” Noemi exclaimed, joining me on the same floor, much to the interest of a few men around.
I laughed it off, hoping she wouldn’t notice. “Yeah, what can I say? It was good!”
“True that,” Noemi replied, sipping hers. It didn’t seem like that long after that we were leaving, but it turned out to be three in the morning. It was great to just have fun and relax with everything going on. We all got to know each other better after tonight, especially Irena. I didn’t know much about her personally until now, like how she’s raising her seven-year old son alone. It’s been different to have good friends besides Lyric, Zoe, and Raini. We’ve known each other for so long that it’s a special kind of friendship. I mean, gosh, we have so many memories we share of growing up. But with Noemi and Irena, it’s different. We don’t have those memories together, but we can still talk easily, even if it is more about certain things than sometimes absolutely nothing like I do with my high school friends. And yet, there are just some things I wouldn’t think of telling Noemi and Irena that it would be easy to call up Lyric and rant about. It’s almost like Lyric and them have become more like family, in a way, over the years.
“Did you have a good time?” Dani asked as I walked in.
“Yeah,” I replied, confused why she was even still up. “It’s three, Dani. What are you doing awake?”
“Waiting for you.”
A/N: What do you think about the added pictures? I felt that I’ve been skimping on pictures since I was trying not to use up too much space, I tried to take only 3-4 pictures a chapter at one point, and this one has eleven! I feel like it lets me focus on the story more since I’m not trying to describe everything.