- Spring 2008 -

Josh's POV

"Emily," I called her, but she didn't move. "Emily, you lazy bumb, wake up. It's 3 in the afternoon and you're still knocked out." I said to the pile of mass in the bed but she didn't move.

I studied her form from up close, she was pale, more than usual and her breathing was shallow. Then I saw them, those damned sleeping pills.

"Em," I tried again, only to be met by silence.

She wasn't going to get up anytime soon. with a very irritated "fuck", I got the damned pills and stuffed them in the back of her closet. She wouldn't know I hid them there, they could wait a few days there until I came back with my back pack and stash them there when she's out. I checked her pulse, good, she's still alive. I can kill her later for being an idiot. I checked her alarm clock and grimaced. It was 3 in the afternoon and I had no intention to go home just yet, not after what my mom just insinuated. No, demanded.

I looked around Em's room for the millionth time making myself comfortable on the side of the bed Em wasn't sprawled on. It was simple, girly and dark. It was completely Em. From the pile of clothes on the floor, the black comforter, the pink photo frames to the girly movie posters and Switchfoot Cd's on her vanity. She was so hard to understand, so complex, fun and easy to get along with. It was a wonder why Todd didn't go out with her, she was just a year younger than her and he used to be so protective of her, blabbing his mouth off about his sister's best friend... it was kind of pathetic. Even now, Em didn't have many friends or a boyfriend.

Oh, who am I kidding? I'm the reason more than half of the girls don't talk to her and some guys would rather kiss pavement than be near her. The truth Em was my best friend, and unlike Todd, I let it be known that Em was someone I loved and if someone messed with her, they would have to respond to me. All of the school saw our interaction and interpreted in a different way. They didn't know Em didn't like me at all like that, but when Angus, one of my supposedly best friends saw her and tried to hit on her, the dip-shit was sporting a bruised cheek for a week, and every male in the high school campus knew not to mess with Emily Bennett.

Em didn't like me for my parent's money like so many people did, she doesn't really know what they do for a living, she knows they're wealthy and treats me like a normal guy. And what do I do for her? Nothing. Yes, guys know that if they hurt her in any way, they answer to me, and they leave her alone, not wanting to face my wrath. So they stay away.

People believed she wanted me, but they were wrong. in truth, I was the one who clinged to her for sanity. I cling to her because she doesn't want me. It seems kind of masochist, but it was the truth. I looked over the picture on her night stand. It was her parents and herself on a picnic, all with big smiles and a tinkle in their eyes that made me jealous. The memories of how we first started talking drifted through my mind.

She pushed me away and laughed in my face when I told her I wanted to be friends. When I mentioned I had some Vodka she looked at me through narrowed eyes, then down at the empty bottle in her hands and then back to me, giving me a once over.

"Fine," she said. "But, I'm just doing it for the Vod, not your wannabe charm 'cus you might be pretty, but you got nothing on Todd."

Her obvious dislike of me was so honest and pure and she was such a mess that she was endearing to me.

We bonded over Vodka that afternoon and I consoled her wen she cried. She didn't last long, thank the gods, because even though I wanted to be her friend, I had no damn clue how to console a woman. Much less a woman in mourning.

I guess I'll learn with her,.

I had never seen a person take news like that. Yes, in movies and such, but not in real life. Not that I blame her, they were her parents after all... Parents, oh, what a fucking joy mine were. The ice-cold lady for a mother and the workaholic no-family-nonsense business man for a father. No nonsense, as if! My fucking mother's already trying to marry me off to some 'Southern Belle' with as much money as my father and half the brains of my mother's dumb cat. Just thinking about it makes me boil with rage and my head pound.

Em knew I didn't like my mother. She gawked at me when she first heard me, but the thing was that her mom was funny, sweet and... motherly. Mine was lacking in the emotional and maternal part of being a mom.

And that's the whole reason I'm here, to talk to Em. She was smart, witty and always a good listener. She always had a way out. A way of making everything a bit lighter than it seemed. Because no way in hell was I going to marry some chick for her daddy's net worth! Em's right though... we have to graduate because by that time we'd be legal and our parents, well, my parents and her aunt wouldn't be able to say shit! Em would take any opportunity to ditch her slutty aunt. But, who could blame her? The lady was a raging drunk and a total whore, always bringing guys to fuck.

I remember one day me and Em were getting out of my car and a guy coming out from the house, no doubt one of her aunt's fuck buddies, just saw her and walks over to her and grabs her ass. I decked him without a word said and Em just smiled at me, her eyes cloudy and her face pale.

It was a year and something that me and Em were good friends. She was the one person I didn't keep secrets to and she let me know what went through her mind.

Maybe Em would like to go to the West Coast. All sun and surf. I'll tell her about it... and sleep came over me like a tide. Slowly but surely.

Okay, I'll be honest, I had a hard time writing this chapter because it's Josh, a male, a teenage male and I'm a female, DUH! But, I didn't know how to portray him him. I hope this is good enough. Tell me what you think.