Amber was a busy person; there was always something to do. Whether it'd be law school or her job at a café at the corner of her block or that her bills were paid on time. She never turned down an extra shift offered at the café, because money doesn't grow on trees, nor do they fall from the sky. There was no time for trivial things, like shopping or dating. Especially dating. It wasn't the fact that she didn't want to; there was simply no one there. The last time she'd been on a date, she left with a big coffee stain on her white shirt. That ended her already small desire to date anyone, she steered clear of dates.

That's why, when she learned that her best friend had been sending her on blind dates to take her away from her anti-social behavior, irritation was a big understatement to what she felt.

"Come on, Amber. What's the big deal with going on a date? You guys will look cute together." Louis pleaded, flinching away from her glare.

"I don't need a relationship." She snapped, interrupting his "there's a hot guy in my class and you should totally date him" speech. "I have my hands full with you as it is. I don't need another one."

"But Embers, he's really cute! He has these really long lashes, those ones that fan out, and a full mouth. Plus he's taller than you; didn't you say girls like tall boys? And he has really soft hands, they would feel nice if you—"

"No, don't finish that sentence. I am not going on a date with a stranger. Besides, it doesn't take much for a boy to be taller than me; I'm one of the shortest girls both you and I know." Amber stood up from her chair and went to the kitchen to get another cup of coffee, leaving her extremely annoying best friend trailing after her.

"You really need to get away from your books and coffee, you're turning into a book. That's not a good thing."

"That wonderful, I can put down more correct answers on my exam. And you, get away from my phone." She looked up to find Louis holding her phone, punching in another random boy's number. "Stop making me add them, there is no point. I'm not going to go out."

Louis made a face, and sat down on the kitchen table. Amber walked around to the dinning table, and set down a plate of waffles and scrabbled eggs. His face brightened, and he dug into his breakfast enthusiastically. "Where's Colin?" he asked between mouthfuls.

"Its 10 already, he has school. You missed him by 2 hours."

Colin was her younger brother, currently in high school, and entrusted in her care after her dad left them. They lived by themselves after her mother died the year after.

"Right, he still goes to school. He looks so much older."

Amber made a face. "Well, he's still in school, so you can stop corrupting him with porn and bribing him to get me to go out. I need to meet the bills, and going out doesn't help in the least."

Louis looked up, "Embers, you don't need to force yourself to be so busy. You need time to relax too."

She signed, and walked to sit across from him with her coffee, "I know, it just feels like there's so many things to do."

Her best friend frowned at her, "Amber, I'm serious. Don't push yourself."

"I'll try."

"Does that mean you'll go out sometime? And go on a date?"

"No promises."

She watched as Louis chewed thoughtfully, and narrowed her eyes. He was planning something. She knew it wasn't going to be good for her.


"Am, you should take the rest of the week off." Lucy, her manager, told her she took lunch break in the café.

Amber looked up in surprise, "Why? I can keep working, there's no major exams coming up."

Her other co-worker, Scott, nodded his head. "You look half dead. Go take a break, rest for a while. Explore our little city, shop until you drop. I heard it's therapeutic to girls."

"But I like this place!" Why was it that everyone kept telling her to take a rest? It made her feel safe that paychecks were coming in this month. Besides, she was fine, and was getting a decent amount of sleep. Around 5 hours a day was good enough for her to stay awake. "Do you not like me working here? Is it because I've won the employee award 4 months in a row?" She asked Scott.

The five months she's been working here, she replaced him as worker of the month. Scott was a little older than her, and had been working here for a long time. He was the café's favorite, with his dimpled smile and tousled blond hair. Amber wondered if he was holding something against her. Not that she blamed him for it.

"No, not at all," he flashed her a smile, "besides, 5 months holds nothing against 20 months." With a wave, he walked out of the café, presumable to get lunch.

Rose spluttered after his retreating figure, before a jingle of the doorbell alerted her of a customer. She looked to find Louis leaning against a table, grinning at her, a smile she couldn't help but return. She tied her uniform on one of the racks, and walked out to great him.

"Hey, what are you doing here? You never come to the café."

"Come with me, let's go get some coffee." Before she could respond to his impromptu request, he dragged her out of the door, and down the block to another cafe.

"If you wanted coffee, we could of gotten some at my café with a discount! There's food there too." Amber protested as they took their seats at a table.

"Take it as a change of scenery, besides, I was craving their special latte, what better excuse to come here?"

She had to admit, the cafe was pretty nice. The cozy atmosphere got to her, and she relented to eating there. A pretty cashier took their order, smiling shyly at Louis. Amber couldn't blame her; Louis was definitely a looker, his hair dirty blond, and piercing pools of green eyes, ones that you could drown in. She knew that feeling, because she often found herself looking into them too.

Louis poked Amber, and told her to get them a seat. She left him with the server, and went off in search of an empty seat in midst of freshmen students, who crowded the café looking for lunch. Amber smiled at the excited chatter, as she found seats beside the window. She used to be like that too, talking about dances and boys, with a presentation being the most stressful thing that happened to them. To be honest with herself, she missed the life that she left behind. Now it was all about law school, she didn't want just passing, she wanted to pass with flying colors. Her life was about Colin too, making sure he got the proper education, and a normal life without both parents.

"Can you stop thinking for just one second and enjoy the moment with me?" Louis said as he slid into the seat across from her, placing their orders on the table. "I could hear your mind turning all the way across the university chatter."

Amber smiled, "Of course, after all, who wouldn't give everything for a coffee date with you?"

"That's the spirit!"

"Besides, you're part of this university chatter too." Amber reminded.

Louis put a hand on his heart dramatically, "I am not. I am a grad student, I cannot be compared with these undergrads."

They drank their coffee in silence, before Amber grew tired of waiting. She tapped her fingers against the rim of her coffee cup, fixing him with a stare, "So… where is he?"

Louis looked at her innocently, "What do you mean, where is who?"

"My date? You wouldn't drag me here for coffee; I've known you long enough. So, when is he coming?"

The best friend across from her frowned, "Why do you suspect me? I want to spend time with you, I hardly ever see you."

"That depends on who's saying it, since you're at my house every waking hour. You even have your toothbrush and towel there. Colin uses it to clean the bathroom floor. You know how our tiles get dirty between the cracks."

Amber watched in amusement as Louis spat out his coffee, choking comically, green eyes staring at her in disbelief. The neighboring table shot him looks of disgust, but he couldn't care less. For all he knew, his toothbrush was contaminated. Did his mouth smell funny too?

Louis looked at her face as he continued to splutter, and drew a realization that Amber was lying. He took a deep breath to stop the coughing, and glare at her. "That's not funny, Amby." He purposefully called her the nickname, knowing she hated it.

Just as he guessed, her lips twitched, she matched his glare. "Just like taking your best friend out on a blind date isn't funny either."

Louis visibly deflated, deciding that he could pretend anymore with her, "Fine, you win. He should be coming in any minute."

Speaking of the devil, her date came walking in the café door. At first, she thought that he was a girl. He was a walking, talking Tinkerbelle, but a boy version.

Boy Tinkerbelle came to their table, and held out a hand, which Amber took hesitantly. She glanced at Louis, eyes pleading him to save her. The blond decided to take pity on his best friend, and joined their awkward atmosphere. "Amber, this is your date, James. James, this is my best friend Amber. James is from my French class."

Amber smiled at him, and he gave her a charming grin. Well, it would have been charming, if she didn't see him as a little kid.

"Well, I'll leave you two to your bonding. I now have a test to study for." Louis waved to both of them, ignoring Amber's murderous glance, and fled the café.

Amber turned back to Tinkerbelle, no sorry, James, and looked expectantly. He smiled back at her, and a silence descended on the two. He kept grinning, which really bothered her, so finally, she broke the silence. "So… You're James."

He nodded, looking delighted that she knew who he was. "Yup, I am."

Their date had little fanfare, he asked the questions, and she would answer them. James kept laughing at everything she said, which irritated her. A normal person does not laugh that much. She was also disturbing reminded of her little brother Colin.

But Amber does listen, and finds out that he is indeed in Louis's French class, which she thinks is completely unnecessary, because Louis could hardly say a complete sentence in French. Last time, she'd caught him using Google to translate his entire essay. James said that he and Louis would write love letters in français, Amber wondered idly who those were for.

When James started talking about rainbows and how beautiful they were, among other things, Amber interrupted. "Are you sure you're in university? Because you look really young." This question was burning in her mind since the moment she saw him.

James did have pink lips, and long lashes, but the way he looked and talked, Amber couldn't imagine him graduating high school.

James blinked at her. Then he stood up, and slapped her.


"Am, are you sure you're okay?" Colin blinks at her worriedly, hovering above her with a glass of water.

Amber groaned, turning slowly on her side, she accepts the water. After draining the entire glass, she was able to talk. "How long have I been out?" Her voice sounded scratchy and rough.

"About 2 hours. You were knocked out really hard." He frowned, probing the ugly red that was blooming on her face.

Amber slapped his hand away, and saw that Louis was also here. "What is he still doing here?"

"I made him stay, it's his fault." Colin pushed Louis forward, and folded his arms. He looked at Louis expectantly.

Louis sank down on the couch that she rested on, a pout adorned his face. "It's not my fault, I wasn't the one who slapped her."

Amber wondered how he would feel if she slapped him in the face really hard, but decided against it, because her arms were sore. She smiled at Colin, who shuffled back in the kitchen to do his homework.

Louis looked at her guiltily, "I'm really sorry, I forgot to tell you that he hates being called out on his baby face." He gently set an ice pack on her face.

The right side of her face was red and swollen; thank goodness it wasn't a bruise. James really didn't hold back. (Jeez, boy weren't supposed to hit girls… unless he swung the wrong way, if you know what she meant.) Next thing she knew, she was lying on her couch, with Colin worrying and Louis trying to hold back his laughter.

"You called him that too, didn't you?" Amber shoved his hand away, and sank deeper into the couch. Who gets that angry about being called young?

"Yeah, but not to his face." Louis said, another grin creeping in. "Last month, I saw him trying beat up a boxing god for calling him a baby face." He shook his head in wonder at the boy's unusual ability.

"Yes, thank you for telling me this after I got beat up." Amber glared as best as she could with an ice pack on her face.

"Even Tam couldn't stop him, so he had to defend himself too. Usually, he never uses his boxing skills on anyone." Louis patted her cheek, "You were really lucky all he did was slap you. He did much worse on others."

"Maybe I should date Tam then," Amber joked, "That ways, he can protect me the next time James asks for round two."

Louis didn't answer, his face thoughtful as he looked at Amber. She could tell that he was scheming again. Because when she saw that look last time, she was force to have coffee with a guy that slapped people for calling him young.

"Tam is a really good guy, he helps me with French all the time when I didn't know what to do." The catlike smile was back on his face. Amber had to physically restrain her hand from punching that look off his face; maybe she should punch as hard as James did.

"No, you are not setting me up with some stranger again. I don't care if he's in your french class, all the people in your french class are crazy. Maybe this time, I'll end up dead, and you're going to get grief with Colin. I heard my little brother had a solid punch too."

Louis stuck his tongue out at her, and Amber really wanted to cut it off. "I bet english speaking people can't stand you at all." She growled.

"But he's totally a match for you!" He defended. "He can protect you from anyone, plus he's sweet, and romantic, and loves to take long walks on the beach by himself. He's also really—"

"Wait, he takes walks on the beach by himself?" Amber doubted the man's sanity, because what the heck? "I don't think he needs to date anyone, he's doing a pretty good job dating himself."

"But I'm sure he'll love it if someone could share the soulful walks with him." Louis brushed off the little details, "So, do you want to meet him?"

Amber really wanted to slap him, her hands twitched in her lap, but she couldn't do it, not when he's staring at her with those green pools, wearing the pouting expression that no girl could refuse, best friend or not.

"I don't even know why I'm friends with you in the first place." Amber relented, sighing a long, deep sigh, and wondered what she just got herself into now.

"Because you love me. Obviously." Louis grinned at her, "And because I have the ice creams you adore so much. Plus, we can watch those chick flicks that you secretly love, just because I owe you one, I'll endure this torture."

Amber smiled fondly as Louis set up the movie. She scooted closer to him, and he wrapped an arm around her. Her best friend always seemed to remember things that no one else did, the little details that she noticed. Like the way her clothes were folded, or how the dishes in her kitchen were stacked and neatly put away. These things that Louis does even when she's not home.

Louis laughed as Amber gets immersed in the movie, and placed a kiss on her forehead.

In the kitchen, Colin made a face at them. "You guys are gross."

"Go do your homework, Colin." They chorused in practiced precision, grinning at each other.


Amber found her self at a nice Chinese restaurant two weeks later. The redness and swelling on her face had mostly disappeared, what little left, Colin's skill in hiding bruises (with him being in dance and basketball), and Louis's words of encouragement (because he really was a useless human being) helped cover up. Her face was almost to perfection; well, as much as it can get after being abused.

Now, she was sitting at a table, sipping wine that a waiter kindly filled, and watching the door for her date. Then, in came a tall, skinny man, dressed in a black t-shirt, black pants, and coal black hair. At first, Amber thought she had been mistaken, because this boy looked more goth than a romantic, beach walking, boxing god, that Louis so helpfully described. But as he came to her table, she knew that this was the man. He looked down at her, like he was complementing how to dispose of her body after she was murdered.

"H-hi?" Amber gripped her fork like a weapon, though she doubted it would be much of a help, ninja-assassin would butter her before she'd even raise her fork.

"Are you Amber?" The voice that came out was soft and mellow, the exact opposite of his dark attire.

"Yes… And you are Tam?" Amber responded slowly, still wary of the imposing man.

To her surprise, his face broke into a smile that almost made Amber fall off her chair. It is that jarring.

Amber had to force a smile of her own. She motioned to the seat across from her, and he slid into it. "Tam Tierney."

She wondered where he was from; she couldn't place a finger on it. He looked Chinese, but also a bit white as well. Maybe he was a mix?

The pair ordered dinner, and chatted about themselves. Amber was mildly surprised to see Tam talk this much. He was everything Louis described, but also more. He was a straight A student, also very athletic, and a competitive swimmer too. Tam was funny, and Amber laughed at all his jokes, whether they were funny or not. It took practice from listening to Louis's lame jokes.

"Um… Louis also mentioned that you like to take walks?" Amber asked hesitantly, "Is that right?"

Tam nodded, leaning back in his seat. "Is this a problem for you?"

Amber hurriedly shook her head, "No, no, no. Not at all. I was just wondering, maybe next time we could walk together? I like to think at the beach too, there is this really pretty place at the Highstone Park—" She trailed off in alarm as Tam started to tear up. "Are you crying?"

Tam sniffled, and wiped away another tear. "Sorry."

"Why are you crying?" Amber asked incredulously, looking at his shaking frame.

"I'm just, so touched. No one has ever wanted to walk with me before." With that, he bursts into another round of tears. "I really like taking these walks, and I would really love if someone came with me too. Then you come along and actually asked if you could walk with me too." His face crumbled comically.

Really, Amber had nothing against crying, she wasn't one of those judging woman who thought that real men don't cry. Everyone was a human being, and they needed to cry sometimes… but she wasn't really sure how to feel about such a manly guy crying like she'd just asked him to marry her.

"It's no big deal, really, it's not like I asked you to live with me or something." Amber awkwardly patted him back in attempt to consul him.

"But I really, really like taking walks," Tam practically bawled into her arms, and she cringed away. His commotion was attracting a lot of looks from across the restaurant. "It really means so much to me that you're willing to do all this and…"

"Um… Tam," Amber pats his face like she did when Colin used to cry when he was little. "I'm sorry, please stop crying,"

Tam reaches for her hand and pressed a kiss. Normally, Amber found it romantic when a boy kissed her hand like that, but it wasn't a pleasant feeling being covered in tears and snot.

"Lets just get the bill…" Amber smiled at him, trying not to show her grimace.

Tam nods dolefully at her, and she was really sorry that they wouldn't see each other again.


Amber plopped down on Louis's sleeping form, and he yelped, before she trapped him underneath.

Louis groan, cracking open one eye, "What are you doing here?" When Amber didn't move or budge her position, he did his best to scream through her shirt, "I'm dying here!"

Amber fixed him with her glare, "Why didn't you tell me he was going to burst out crying in the middle of a restaurant?"

Louis registered what she was talking about, "Ah, your date. How'd it go?"

"He started bawling his eyes out when I suggested that we go talk a walk together sometime."

"Well, yeah. Tam is kind of a crier…"

"You KNEW? And you did think of TELLING ME?" Her glare went up a notch; her tone was so hysterical Louis thought of making a run for it.

"He only cries when he's touched by something." Louis explained slowly, lest he angered her more.

"He looked like he was going to kill me when he first arrived. I was afraid for my life!" Amber rolled off him, and buried her head into his bed, her voice muffled by the sheets. "I hate you. Why do I let you talk me into doing crazy things?"

Louis poked her tentatively, "Well, as least you got it over with?" When she didn't respond, he flopped back on his bed. "Come on Embers, I thought you two would hit off together. I'm really sorry, again." He wraps an arm around her, pulling her close.

"We did hit off really well, until he started spreading snot all over my hand." Louis could feel her cringe. Impulsively, she bit his hand.

"Ow, Embers! I know you hate me, but that doesn't mean you should bite me."

As an apology, she patted his hand. "I'm staying here tonight, you have to let me stay here. Its all your fault."

"Fine, do what you want." Louis pulled up the covers over his head. "What about Colin?"

"He has a study date with a girl from his school, I think it was Elaine."

"Alright, well, your clothes are at the bottom drawer, and your toothbrush is in the red cup."

"Too tired." Amber mumbled, she wormed closer into his chest. "Will Danielle be okay with this?"

"She out of town." His voice was barely audible, rubbing his hands up and down her shoulder.

"Okay." And they fell asleep like that, with her head buried in his torso, and his arm around her.


"What happened?" Lucy asked as Louis walked in the cafe. She motioned to his hand, where a bruised had formed.

"He deserved it." Amber grinned at him. Louis glared back, and took a seat at one of the empty tables. She walked over to him and set his green tea latte on the table.

"Danielle is coming back today," Louis informed her, skillfully ignoring Lucy. "You want to come with me over to her house Friday? She's making her pesto chicken soup that I hate, but you love."

"Sorry, not this time. I have a debate to prepare, and I'm pretty sure I'm going to be camping out in the library for the next few days."

"What about Colin? Is anyone taking care of him?" Louis asked, he was concerned for Colin, who was like a little brother to him. There had been days where he stayed over to take care of Colin while she'd been busy with school.

"I think Elaine is staying over."

"Elaine? You mean the girl Colin when on a study date with? Aren't you afraid they're going to burn down the house or something?"

"I trust Elaine, she's uptight and responsible. Though how Colin ever came to know that girl is a mystery." Amber could feel the incoming debate over her head like a shadow, and she couldn't wait till it was over. "You should go spend some time with Danielle, alone. I think she's secretly annoyed that I come over all the time."

Then Amber remembered the bruise on his hand, "and tell her this was because you were really dumb."

Louis made a face at her as she walked to the back for another customer's order. Scott walked over to Louis, and took his now empty cup away. "Isn't this the first time Danielle came in weeks?" He over heard their conversation, and was puzzled by the fact that Louis would bring another girl on his date.

"Two weeks. She had this work thing in Boston, and it took her longer than she'd expected."

"Then why are you inviting Amber over?"

"Because, it's what we always do." Louis answered, "When Danielle comes home, I always invite Embers over, because Danielle cooks. Its better to have Embers over because she's the only one who enjoys her cooking."

"I see…" Scott mused, a small smirk on his face.

"What?"

"Nothing. Too bad Amber can't come with you this time." Scott flashes him a knowing smile, and left to tend to another customer.

Amber came out of the kitchen with a customer's food, to find Louis still there, pondering over Scotts words. "What are you still doing here?" She demanded.

"Am I not allowed to sit here?" He shot back, surprised at her burst of anger.

"No, you idiot, you have business class in 5 minutes!"

Louis glanced at his watch, his eyes widened, and he shot of the cafe in record time.

Amber sighed after him. "Loser." But there was a small smile at the corner of her lips.


Amber glanced at her watch again, and frowned at the entrance. She's been in this sports shop for 10 minutes already, and Louis was late once again. She'd gotten a call from him during her study period, with an urgent request to meet him at this shop. She actually skipped it to come here.

"Embers!" Louis rushed in the store, out of breath.

"Where have you been?" Amber immediately scolds him.

"Sorry, I got held up." He runs his hands through his hair, and Amber noticed that something was off about him.

"What happened?"

"Nothing, its just Danielle." Louis waves her concern away, and scans the store.

"Did you two fight again?" Amber said, her concern leaking through.

"No, it's not that. She's got another business trip for a week this time." Louis sigh, "I told her it was okay, because you're here anyway."

The pair had been dating for 6 months now. Danielle and him met at a seminar for all Business students, where Danielle was one of the hosts. It was really a miracle how they'd it off together, because Louis was a bit of a weirdo, but Danielle seemed to be patient enough to endure his little quirks.

"Oh," Amber patted his back. It was really weird to see Louis without a smile on his face. He had such a happy and sunny personality, with all his weird jokes, that seeing him frown was extremely unusual. "Maybe when she comes home, you can give her a surprise?"

"Yes, that's a good idea." He seemed happier than he was moments ago. "I can make my own version of chicken soup. You can even help me taste test it!"

"That is not a good idea. Lives are at stake when you step into the kitchen." Louis shoved her, but the smile was back again.

"So, what was the crisis that you told me about?" Amber asked, taking them back to the main reason why she was here instead of preparing her debate. There didn't seem to be a crisis in the sports store, unless someone toppled over tripping on many hazardous sports equipment in the area.

"Okay, don't get mad," was Louis's opening line. She knew that whatever he was going to say next was not going to be good for her.

"What did you do this time?" She really felt like throwing a basketball at his face, but she didn't want to be arrested.

"You see that person by the cashier?" Louis pointed at said place, there was a tall blond disaster leaning against the counter top, studying a basketball. "He's in my class and —"

Amber buried her face in her hands, "You set me up again."

"I felt really bad about Tam and James and I wanted to make it up to you. Since you were really busy with your debate, I didn't want to tell you until now."

"I hate you." Amber said, it was the tragedy of her life. She was sentenced forever to blind dates that will turn out horribly. "Actually, I've hated you all my life. Why are we friends again?" She glanced at said male, who plastered what looked like a smile on his face.

"His name is Luke." Louis ignored her previous comment, happy that he managed to 'persuade' her into this. "And he's in my—"

"Let me guess, french class?" Amber shot him a look, "Yet again."

"He's Canadian, but he was born in France. You know, with Paris and the Eiffel tower. He's been looking for more friends who can practice english with, and I thought of you. You're a lawyer, so your naturally good at english." Louis looked at Amber like she'd just won the lottery.

Amber shook her head, and sighed. "I don't know why I put up with you."

"Because you love me." Louis smugly declared, "and because you know I want the best for you." He nudged her gently to the blond. "I promise, if this doesn't work out, then I won't bother you for the rest of your life. You can be a cat lady or a priest for all I care."

She pinched his check, "You're too dramatic. So do I just go over and introduce myself?"

"Yup."

"Well, do I look okay?"

Louis studied her once over, and smiled. "You look like a jewel, specifically an amber."

Amber rolled her eyes. "Wish me good luck." she called dryly, and walked up to the blonde male.

"Hi." She greeted the blonde, not noticing how tall he was until she was standing right beside him. He was a giant to her height.

"Hi," Luke said, looking over her head to see Louis give him a thumb up before leaving the store. "So you're Amber." He spoke with a barely noticeable french accent.

"And your Luke."

"Louis has told me a lot about you."

"Hopefully all good things." Amber gave him a small smile, "but I hardly know you at all, apart from being in his french class."

"I'm sure we can remedy that. What to grab some Coffee?"

"Great!"


"Hey." Louis greeted Amber absentmindedly as she came home that evening. His eyes were fixated on the T.V screen; it was playing a rerun of Les Miserables.

"I can't believe you started without me." Amber grumbled, setting her bag on the floor. She plopped down beside him and reaching out to take some popcorn.

"You were taking forever. I didn't think you would come home." Louis said. "Colin is in his room."

"Scoot over." Amber pushed Louis so she could slide on the couch beside him. She leaned her head on his shoulder and he wrapped his arms around her. They sat in silence as they watched Anne Hathaway run away in the rain, dragging her daughter.

"So, how'd the date go?" Louis asked, his hands playing with her long hair.

"Good." Amber answered.

He then gestured to the screen, "She is an amazing singer. Too bad she died in the movie."

Amber laughed, "She died because she was so surprised that the one taking care of her was a criminal."

Louis grinned and pulled her closer, and planted a kiss on her forehead. "I'm glad you had fun."

She smiled back, and wrapped her arms around his waist. "Me too."


Amber entered her house, stretching her arms as she made her way to the kitchen, where Colin was snacking on a bagel. She's been feeling really tired these past few weeks. She loved taking law, but sometimes, she wondered if this was really something she wanted to pursue.

"Hey Am." Colin greeted her between bits.

She walked over to her little brother, ruffling his hair and taking a seat across from him. She set her laptop on the table, and pressed the power button. "How's school?"

"Good, I got an A on my English paper." He grinned as Amber beamed at the news. "Elaine helped me with the grammar."

"Ah, the smart, wallflower, kid." Amber said, opening her newest assignment. Her fingers drummed against the keyboard.

"Sis. She's not a wallflower."

Amber doesn't respond to his half-hearted reproach. "Did Louis call today? He said he'd be over for lunch tomorrow."

Colin shook his head, "But Luke did."

"Right, he was supposed to call." Amber pushed back her chair and stood up. "He'll be coming over for dinner today." She took one last look at her paper, and sighed. She'll have to stay up tonight.

She and Luke had hit off really well despite Louis's other choice of friends. Luke was a mix of James and Tam, just a much more mild version of each. They'd been going out more a month, and she's like all the dates so far.

Luke was a business grad like Louis. His family was business owners, and they were thinking of giving a branch to Luke at this city to manage. He brings Amber food sometimes when she forgets to eat between assignments; Luke took over the job for Louis, since they were considered boyfriend and girlfriend now. He really is very sweet, and smart. He's also handsome when he doesn't try so hard to smile.

The one thing that Amber likes the most is that he never pushes her for a date. He's not one of those clingy boyfriends that want to spend every second with their girlfriend. Instead, he comes over to their house to watch movies and eat ice cream together.

"Why are you guys going out?" Colin asked suddenly. Amber stop what she was doing and faced him.

"You mean Luke?" She asked at him. "I like him."

"I know you do, but…" Colin hesitated, "What about Louis?"

"Louis?" Amber laughed. She abruptly stopped when she saw that he was serious. "Colin, Louis is my best friend. You should know that. Besides, we don't like each other that way." She patted his arm.

"Why not?" Colin frowned.

"What do you mean?" Amber asked quizzically. "We're best friends, as I said before. They don't date."

Amber thought that best friend is much too shallow for their relationship. They've known each other since high school, where they shared the same classes all year. Somehow, the friendship grew and stayed though university. They've always been there for each other through thick and thin. Amber honestly can't see her life without Louis there. Sometimes, she felt like Louis knew her better than she knew herself.

"What wrong about being in love with your best friend?" Colin pressed.

"Nothing at all." Amber assured him. She studied Colin. "It's about the smart wallflower girl, Elaine. Do you love her?"

Colin colored, he looked away in embarrassment. "Kind of."

Amber smiled at Colin, and pulled him in a tight hug. If it took Elaine to make him happy, then she was completely fine with it.

"Colin, is she in love with you too?" She asked.

"She says she is."

"Then there is nothing wrong with being in love with your best friend, as long as you love each other." Amber said softly.

"Then why aren't you and Lou together?"

Amber merely laughed, because she found that she didn't have an answer to that question either.


The cafe is pack with students just coming out of their morning classes. All the workers there were busy serving the orders and managing the cashier. Amber hums a tune as she sets down the serving train on one of the vacate seats. She's just about to clean the table when she felt a pair of arms wrapped around her waist. She smiled as she turned around to greet Luke.

"Hey." Luke said.

"Hi." Amber smiled at him. "How was Business Management class?"

Luke stepped aside to let her pass. "Completely tiring." Then he paused. "How did you know I had Business Management today?"

"You share most of your classes with Louis right?" Amber answers distractedly, wiping the crumbs from the table. "He made me memorize his schedule on the first day of class."

"Oh." Luke's smile disappeared. "It wasn't that bad, but I was still stressed. Are you busy tonight, maybe we could grab some dinner, and watch a movie or something? I know you've been wanting to watch a movie for a while now."

Amber shook her head, looking apologetically at Luke. "I'm working the last shift today, and I have another presentation happening tomorrow." She pouts and kissed him swiftly. "I'm really sorry."

"It's okay." Luke nodded in understanding. "Maybe during the weekend."

They walked over to the cashier, where Lucy was taking orders. "Are you ordering anything?" She asked him.

"He'll have the green tea latte." Amber called from the back.

"No," Luke shook his head. "I'll take the iced coffee. I don't really like sweet."

When Amber walked back out with a bucket of ice, she saw Luke's coffee, and swallowed uncomfortably. Green tea latte was Louis's favorite. "Are you staying home today? I can call you later." She asked him, trying to make up for the canceled date.

"Sure," Luke said, "I'd like that."

Louis came running shortly afterwards, his hair and cloths in disarray. He scans the cafe for Amber before pulling her aside. Scott promptly showed Luke to a table a bit farther from where they were.

"Louis, what's wrong?" Amber asks worriedly. She smoothed his hair down and straightened his shirt. Louis hesitates, looking at the ground. "What happened?" Amber put her hands on his face.

"Its Danielle." Louis said quietly, "She didn't… We broke up."

Amber made a noise of condolence, and wrapped her arms around him in a tight hug. She rubbed his back gently. "Oh Louis."

"Do you need me to do anything?" Amber asks, pulling away from him.

"Can you come over?" Louis asks, his hand still in hers.

"Of course I will." Amber agreed without hesitation. "I'll bring a movie, and ice cream, and I'll buy the cake you really like."

A weak smile flitted to his face. "You're the best. Thanks."

"Of course I am, idiot. I'll be over in an hour." She kissed his check and hugged him again. "See you in a few."

Louis nods. He waved goodbye to Scott, Lucy and Luke before walking out of the cafe.

Rose made her way back to the counter. Lucy and Scott looked at each other before walking to the back.

"Is everything okay?" Luke asked, reaching for her hand and pulling her to look at him. "It looked like there was trouble."

"He broke up with his girlfriend," Amber said, not paying any mind to him. She walked around him to the get the next order.

Luke looked surprised for a moment, before putting a hand on her arm. "I'm sorry to hear that." He said sincerely. "But I think he'll be okay."

"Of course he will, he always bounces back, and if he doesn't, I'll make him bounce back." Amber said, "I'm going to have to ask Lucy if I can make up for the shift tonight. I need to buy some ice cream and cake, and rent a movie. Oh, and Colin needs to eat dinner too." She listed off the things she needed to get done.

"You're going over to his house tonight?" Luke asked, frowning at her back, it made him look more menacing than usual.

Amber nodded, "He's going to need me there tonight."

"But what about the studying?" Luke reminded her.

"I'll make up for that too, I'll just study more tomorrow."

"I'm sure Louis will be find by himself." Luke said calmly, his arms folded at his chest. "He's a big boy, you don't need to take care of him all the time."

"It's not just that! He just broke up with his girlfriend!" Rose frowned; she spun around to face Luke. "Why do you have a problem with that?"

"You said you have homework." Luke shrugged nonchalantly, his face impassive.

Amber narrowed her eyes; "You're jealous because I said no to you and yes to Louis, aren't you?" Amber expected him to deny it, but when he averted his gaze, she laughed in disbelief. "Without Louis, we wouldn't have met. You owe him this much, and you're his friend."

"You're my girlfriend." Luke argued.

"And he's my best friend!"

Luke shook his head, "I'm not stupid, you know?" He snapped, "You and Louis, you're—"

"Get out, Luke." Amber gridded her teeth, her anger flaring up. "If you can't accept my friendship with Louis, something that goes without explaining, than I can't be with you anymore."

Luke clenched his jaw, looking ready to argue, but just shook his head and left the cafe. Amber let out a sigh, and leaned against the counter, the emotion that came on top was not sadness, but a strange feeling of relief.


Louis was in bed when she walked into the apartment, the lights were turned off, and the only source of light was the moon shining through the curtains. Amber climbed on the bed and got under the covers. Automatically, Louis rolled towards her, and wrapped his arms around her waist, pulling her closer.

"I have the food and movie." Amber told him, his head was buried in her hair.

"Later." Louis said, he hugged her even tighter.

"Alright."

Amber closed her eyes and sank into the bed, she thought, about Tam and James and Luke and all the others she's ever dated. Then she thought of her earlier conversations with Colin, about being in love with your best friend.

"Louis," She whispered, he murmured something incoherent in response. "I broke up with Luke."

Louis stilled for a minute, before pulling away to look at her, Amber wanted to laugh at the expression on his face, there was not a hint of surprise. He looked like he was expecting this.

"You okay?" Louis asked, and she nodded.

They stayed that that for a long time, their arms and legs around each other, their heads inches apart, and the eyes meeting in a telling gaze.

There was another moment before Louis opened his mouth.

"Embers, I think I've always—"

"You think?" Amber smiled at him, making a face.

Louis rolled his eyes, "You're absolutely insufferable, you know?" He poked her side, and she jumped away, flailing her arms.

"Oh please, you know you love me." Amber laughed in the dark, but her eyes widened as he stayed silent, she could feel his gaze, and saw the knowing smile that flitted at the corner of his mouth.

"Amber, I've always—"

She closed the distance between then, and kissed him. She held her breath as she waited for him to respond, and she didn't wait long. A heartbeat later, he's kissing her back.

When they pull away, her eyes were shinning, her heart about to burst. This was the feeling she only felt with Louis, and she could see that in Louis, every time he looked at her.

"I know," Amber whispered, a smile spreading across her face, "me too."


Amber wiped a table with her cloth, and straightened to look at Colin, and the nerdy kid, Elaine, smile at each other as they share a drink with two straws. They came into the cafe that afternoon so Colin could introduce her properly to everyone as his girlfriend.

"They've know each other for some time now?" Scott asked, passing her with an ice cream cone for a costumer.

"Almost a year now." Amber answered, rolling her eyes when Colin decided to remove the cream on Elaine's lips with a kiss. "He's been so happy these days. I suppose it's thank to her."

"They finally stopped dancing around each other all the time," Scott said, "People are much happier when they finally see what's been in front of them all along." He gave her a long look.

"Those are two very different things." Amber raised her eyebrows at him.

"Two things you the bill very well." Scott grinned.

Amber looked up as the doorbell rang once again and Louis walked in. He met her eyes, and simultaneously, they smile at each other.

Amber can see what Scott had said. From the outside, people must have thought that all those years of her friendship with him as dancing around each other. But it's not that, they weren't assessing each other, nor were they shy. Amber has always seen him.

She and Louis… they just are.

Maybe the reason she's never been interested in anyone was because of Louis. She meant it when she said that her hands were full with him to think about dating, she never needed anyone else, because she always had him.

Amber smiled as Louis leaned towards her for a kiss. She didn't need to get used to it.

She's had it all her life.