This is an excerpt from my novel I’m currently working on. 

He didn’t dare to return to the room. He knew that if he went again, the knife was sure to get through his chest. Instead, he opted for gazing at the open sky. Whenever he was troubled, he would go to the rooftop and stare at the starry sky. While climbing the stairs, his every thought bounced from head to toe. He was confused at why Veronica was feeling insecure. He needed a clear mind to think how to butter Veronica and make her realize that he loves her rather than Allie. Deep in thoughts, he didn’t notice the rooftop door being opened. He was surprised to see Allie staring at the beautiful sparkling sky.  “Allie.” said Percy. 

She turned around with glassy eyes and resumed to stare at the sky back. He figured out that she was ashamed of her acts in the party. He was determined to make her happy again. Confused at his determination, he continued anyway. Taking little steps and walking towards Allie, he felt unsure how he could possibly talk to her, she was crushed inside and couldn’t even bring herself to look at him. Words failed them both, a difficult silent had descended. Allie tried her best to control herself so that she wouldn’t cry in front of him. She was doing her best to be strong, but the feeling of despair was still fresh. She broke the silence with her crackling voice.

“Kairin told me.” Percy gaped at her and he knew that she felt ashamed of her doings in the party. Allie was too pure to act like that. She had never been caught in the vortex of being tipsy; she was not a party-girl.

“I danced with Ian. Nymeria and Ian were already fighting and I made it worse. And then I tried to dance with you without even knowing anything about dance. I made a fool out of myself.” Allie’s eyes couldn’t hold the tears, it trickled out. Silence again surrounded, Percy couldn’t dare to talk to Allie, and he wasn’t a smooth talker. He can go from unattainably sweetest thing to blatant oblivious guy. She tried to conceal everything away from her raven-haired love; it was her growling stomach that lowered her guards. The two were startled by the loud rumbling sound of Allie’s unsatisfied stomach. She looked up and flushed deep red. Percy looked at her, who was tensing under embarrassment. She felt helpless and Percy let out a light chuckle.

“You are hungry, aren’t you? Yes, of course! You only drank.” Allie rolled her eyes on him. 

“I brought this burger. I intended to eat this but you need it more.” Percy handed over the food to her from his hoodie’s pocket. He forwarded his hand towards her and the bandaged wound caught Allie’s notice. She firmly, yet softly, caught his hand and observed it.

“Veronica did this, right?” 

“How do you know everything?” Percy was dumbfounded on how Allie deduced it.

“I heard you and her fighting loudly and in one point there was silence that you broke with a slightest voice of pain and I assumed she hurt you. And the bandage makes it all clear.” She guessed perfectly. Or shall we say, deduced?

“Oh. Sometimes I hate you for this.” He looked over to the sky admiring the shining stars.

“When did you ever love me?” The truth pierced the silent night and Allie’s shattering heart. “Give me the burger, will you?” Percy totally forgot about the burger and offered her again. She accepted the meal from Percy with both hands. Holding the burger, she felt warmness, reminiscent of Percy’s hands holding her shoulders from the party. It was an impromptu hug but the embracing warmness was what she desired from the beginning. She always felt shy around Percy but their contract brought them closer. Allie seemed to gain a new sense of comfortableness around him. Those made her finish the burger in a matter of seconds, before wiping the mayonnaise from her mouth. Percy had been watching the whole time with raised eye-brows, which Allie soon noticed, and gulping like that, made her cringe with shyness and hid her face with her hands. Percy began to laugh again. He wasn’t going to let her hide again. He reached out an arm and caught her hands that blocked her sweet, innocent face, one that needed a good cheering up. She was still embarrassed of her acts in the party. Percy held her hands softly and looked her in her eyes. Ashamed, she looked at her feet instead.

“Look at me.” He commanded, those sad eyes looked up at him.

“It’s alright to make mistakes. People will forget and you also have to. You cannot stick to one mistake and sulk for over days because Life is not steady. You’ll make mistake again and again. It will go on but always remember that we have to treat our mistakes as a stepping stone and move forward.” Percy flashed an encouraging smile towards her and she lighted up. Allie’s eyes shined and smiled at him back. He felt warm. He was happy that Allie finally smiled and he was able to bring back her smile. He felt different again. It was a feeling stronger than friendship and warmer than just admiration and respect. It was something new. He didn’t know if it was something in the air or the lights of the stars shining down upon them. She held his hands tightly and he abruptly pulled her into a hug. His arms devoured her, as she sunk into a warm embrace, feeling the warmth of his body. She felt safer, she felt happier- just like when they were just kids. Neither one of them felt awkward. To them, it felt like the world’s most natural thing ever. Percy, now, changed his perspective for her. He has grown to respect her and tried to mend their broken friendship, which they had when they were younger. Both broke the hug, albeit Allie didn’t want to. 

“You should rest. Come.” Percy said holding her hands and leading the way to the room so that she could rest. Allie looked over Percy and smiled. Both walked down the stairs with their fingers intertwined with each other. 

~Ankita Brahma 

Note: It will take years to finish the novel. 

And thanks for reading. 

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