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What am I doing?
I put back down the small bag of salted peanuts I had in my hand. Why I continue to eat, I don’t know. My mom swears I have tape worm, but I on the other hand think it’s some genetic disorder. It’s not my fault I was born into a family of overactive eaters. Look at my grandma for instance, she cooks all day, and you would think by the looks of it, she’s cooking for a family reunion or something. But no, she lives alone and eats it all herself.
I look at the peanuts again. I have a massive stomach ache from being on this plane and just one more back of these babies and I’m going to be in some serious pain. They shouldn’t even look appetizing to me, yet they do. I look down at my stomach then at my thighs. I should really thank my mom for passing down the high metabolism gene. I just wonder what I would really look like if it wasn’t for that.
“Excuse me?” I look over at the guy sitting next to me who evidently just woke up from a nap. “May I have those?” he had a thick British accent. It irritated me more than it would have because he was asking for my peanuts, the ones I was just about to eat. He smiled at me. He had a nice one too, with dimples and everything.
I handed the bag to him reluctantly, knowing that if I didn’t, I’d end up eating them and regretting it. “Thank you,” he said giving me a nod. “You know these really are my favorite snack.”
“Mmm,” I said still annoyed that it wasn’t me eating them right now. I could tell him that they were my favorite too, and then possibly he would share. But instead I’ll just wait for the attendant to come around again so I can get my own pack.
“My names Ethan,” he said smiling at me. I gave him a smile back. Obviously this guy was not getting the point that I was not in the mood to talk. Why did he even have to wake up from his nap? Everything was just fine when he was asleep. I began to unravel my headphones from the knot they were in. “and yours?” he said looking at me, still chewing some peanuts.
I didn’t even look over this time. Instead, I kept busy by pretending to ignore him and trying to detangle my headphones. I heard him mumble something to himself and he then turned to look out the window. I quickly scanned the seats around me to see if there were any open, preferably next to no one. Actually, I would even sit next to someone as long as they didn’t feel like chit chatting like this guy.
“It’s quite beautiful,” he said, “the clouds I mean.” I put in my head phones and turned up the volume of the music. The station I was getting was playing Green Day’s new song. And just as I was about to flip the station, the music was cut off and Ethan here beside me was holding the other end of my headphones.
“What?” he said shaking his head, “do I have bad breath or something?” It was actually quite the opposite. The lingering sent of peanuts on his breath drew me closer to him until I was close enough to place my lips on his. I pulled out the buds from my ears and yanked the other end from him. Then quickly backed away and faced front so now I could see the back of the heard of the person in front of me.
“Is that why you’re not saying a word to me? Hm?” I could feel his stare on me and it was starting to get uncomfortable. “Fine,” he said facing away from me, “I was just trying to be nice.”
The flight attendant was coming down the aisle offering drinks and little snacks, peanuts included. But now, I didn’t have the appetite for them. And in fact, I felt pretty embarrassed for acting like a little kid just then.
“My name is Audrey.” I said with my eyes closed.
There was a long pause before he spoke. “Well nice to meet you.” his tone was bitter. I looked over at him and he looked at me and then quickly away. He had creamy brown eyes which matched his warm personality. He looked about seventeen, my age, and had in between his legs a guitar case covered in stickers from places around the world.
“You play?” he looked over at me again but this time I held his gaze.
“Yeah,” he said, his eyes had little flecks of gold around the pupils more so in his left eye than in his right. He looked away and ran his fingers along the case. I was tempted to ask him about this one sticker that he was rubbing back and forth but instead I said the second thing that was on my mind which was, “your hair is the color of peanuts.” He looked up at me with a confused look and then there was an awkward pause. “Sorry, that was…ridiculous.” But then, he smiled, and then laughed and I found myself laughing with him at my own stupidity.
“No, no,” he laughed, “your right it is the color of peanuts.” I looked at it again and realized that I admired this hair. No one in my family has hair even close to that color. It’s all dark even our dog has hair as dark as night. “Where are you going?”
I was surprised, “what?”
“You’re on this plane for some reason right?” he smiled, “where are you headed?”
Up until now I completely forgot about the summer internship at the Maryland School for the Arts. I was chosen out of a “select group” to come and join their singing program. It was a big honor.
“Don’t worry,” he said, “I’m not going to stalk you.”
I smiled at him, this time meaning it. “Baltimore,”
He looked sort of surprised, “well, me too.”
“Really?” I said, “Where in “Baltimore?”
He hesitated then started to dig through his backpack he had jammed under the seat. “I’m sorry; I can’t remember the name,” as he was looking for something, I saw that most of the things in his worn bag were rough copies of lyrics. This surprised me. “Ah, here we go.”
He held out a pamphlet of a school with students posed, smiling of course, on the stairs. “The Maryland School of the Arts,”
I looked up at him my eyes wide.
“What?” he said and I started to laugh and then shook my head.
He smiled, “wait, you too as in…you too?”
“Yes,” I laughed and he put the pamphlet away.
“This is a little coincidental don’t you think?”He was smiling and I loved how his eyes crinkled just the slightest bit. He was just about to speak when the captain came over the intercom saying we were beginning to descend.
“Here,” he said handing me a piece of paper torn off from a larger piece, “give me a call sometime,” he smiled, “I think we’d make some great music.”
Just as he said that I felt myself blushing but I turned my head so he couldn’t see and shoved his number deep into my pocket. But before I did, I noticed the back of the piece of paper came from one of his songs. And it said “sing to me”
I smiled to myself and thought, “This is a little coincidental”