Falling For You

February 24, 2011
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I sat on the edge of the bed with my feet propped up on a metal garbage can. My calculus book crushed my thighs as I intensely studied how to divide polynomials.

Right outside the window I could hear the soft whisper of the ocean a muffled musical beat coming from the large speakers on the beach. I could also hear the distant voices of teenagers, their gregarious shouts echoing in the air.

The sound of bare footsteps against the wooden floor pulled my eyes away from my book. My older sister Brooke was standing in front of me sporting a red and white floral bikini. Her long brown hair was clipped back, revealing her perfect cheekbones. I almost envied her small waist and long tanned legs, but then thought of how much smarter I was than her.

She smiled at me with her fake white teeth. “Hey Ari, I’m going tanning, want to come with?” she asked me in an overly upbeat voice.

“Kinda busy right now,” I replied, pointing at my textbook.

She rolled her emerald eyes and places a hand on her hip. “You get to stay in California for the whole summer and you choose to study math problems? Wow, mom and dad have really messed you up, haven’t they?”

Through clenched teeth I replied, “They have nothing to do with this. You know I want to be a math teacher. I need to study hard.”

Brooke sighed loudly. “Well at least go outside and study,” she said, looking at the closed shades on the windows. “It feels like you’re working in a tunnel.”

Before I could answer her, she walked out of the room, her sculpted hips swaying from side to side.

Despite my annoyance with Brooke, I found myself walking outside minutes later, math book in hand.

I eased onto one of the benches that faced the beach. I watched the waves move on to the shore with a calm, delicate touch. The water looked so soft, as if I could run my fingers along it and feel the warmth of the sun’s reflection.

People of all ages were scattered among the sandy ground. I spotted the younger children digging and making pathetic sand castles that their parents smiled proudly at. Most of the adults who didn’t have children with them were tanning and sleeping on beach towels.

The kids my age were surfing, playing beach volleyball, or dancing with their friends to the blasting music. The smiles on their faces were genuine and their body language showed that they were open for adventure.

I breathed in the beauty of Del Mar. I was secretly excited that I was here for my entire summer break. Brooke’s husband, Ian, owned a lot of property along the beach. He rolls in the dough while Brooke sits on her throne all day, doing whatever she pleases. When they invited me to stay at their upscale beach house for the summer, I surprisingly didn’t hesitate to say yes.

I crossed my pale legs and opened my book again. It was difficult to concentrate with all the background noise.

Through the corner of my eye, I saw a body sit down right next to me. I kept looking down at my book even though I was curious to see who it was.

“Ah, trigonometric functions. Looks intriguing,” spoke a smooth voice, inches away from my ear.

I quickly turned my head and found myself looking at a boy about my age. His shaggy black hair and multiple eyebrow piercings looked threatening, but his eyes forced me to stare.

The sapphire in his eyes resembled the bottom of the ocean; mysterious and compelling. They looked into my own eyes with magnetized intensity.

Since I momentarily forgot how to speak, he broke the lingering silence.

“So is that a new form of entertainment or something?” he asked, smirking at me.

I cleared my throat. “Uh, no. I’m planning on becoming a math teacher so I need to just concentrate on studying.”

His eyebrows raised in a high arch. “You’re in over your head. You’re going to have to relax eventually.”

“Please I get enough nudging from my sister,” I said, nodding to the most golden-skinned person lying on the beach.

“Oh, you’re Brooke’s sister!” He smiled, revealing pure white teeth. “I’m good friends with Ian. He told me you were coming. You’re Ariana, right?”

“Yeah but you can call me Ari. And you are?”

“I’m Scott but you can call me Scotty,” he said, still smiling.

He stood up, leaving me to stare at long legs of black skinny jeans.

I looked up at him as he started to speak again.

“A bunch of us are meeting here around nine tonight. You should come hang with us,” he said, looking down at me. “Just don’t bring the book.”

He winked at me as that attractive smirk stayed on his face.

After he walked away, I went back to the house to study more.

I studied for hours, but instead of seeing lines of black and white numbers and letters, I kept seeing his eyes. I kept thinking about how blue they were. How glossy and clear they were, never looking away from me.

I never daydream. Especially while doing my math work. But something was different this time. My sudden attraction for Scotty was distracting me.

Perhaps that’s why I found myself throwing my book on the bed and getting ready to go out.

I looked at my reflection in the mirror. I had on my favorite t-shirt; a blue v-neck with a large white peace sign on it. I was satisfied with my outfit but my hair was a mess and earlier the hot sun melted my eyeliner, smudging it under my eyes.

I ran my fingers through my amber hair, cursing myself for forgetting to bring my hairbrush. I touched up my makeup as best as I could, giving my green eyes one last stare-down before looking away.

Brooke was out with Ian for the night so I left her a text letting her know I would be out all night too.

It was fairly quiet when I got the to beach. The subtle lights surrounding the sand made the ocean look unknown yet interesting. The stars were so radiant that I kept look towards the sky in awe.

“It’s nice out here isn’t it?” Scotty’s voice asked from behind me.

I turned around to see the same stunning boy I had seen earlier. Even in the dark of the night, his eyes were the first things that stood out to me.

“Yeah it’s really beautiful,” I said, giving him a shy smile.

He smiled back, making my heartbeat faster.

“Are your friends coming too?” I asked.

“Nah, they couldn’t make it tonight. Well that’s what they told me to tell you. I told them I met a girl and they got all excited,” he replied with a chuckle.

I laughed and felt a surge of excitement running through my body.

“So I was thinking we could go to this really awesome rollerblading rink. I’ve been going there since I was little,” said Scotty.

I looked at my feet and said, “Um…I don’t know how to rollerblade.”

“You’ve never been rollerblading before?” he asked in a shocked voice.

I slowly shook my head giving him a sheepish grin.

He lightly grabbed my arm and said, “Well, it’s never too late to learn. Let’s go!”

When we arrived at the rollerblading rink, I started to fear that I would make a complete fool out of myself. I would probably fall right on my butt and he would think I’m such a loser.

We paid for our rollerblades and sat on a bench to put them on.

I watched the other rollerbladers out on the rink, rushing by, showing off their skills of spinning and other talents that I would never come close to doing. As they went around that circle, I felt a knot forming in my stomach.

Scotty must have seen the worry on my face. “It’s okay, I’ll help you out at first. You’ll be a pro before you know it,” he said, trying to reassure me.

Even with that adorable smile, I wasn’t convinced enough. But I still made my way to the rink with Scotty’s assistance.

I started out slow, holding on the to wall as we skated around the big circle. I moved my feet inch by inch, letting everyone else skate past us.

“You’re one of the only people I know who has never learned how to rollerblade,” Scotty said to me.

“Yeah well I grew up working hard and never really found the time for things like this. I always believed that school was the most important thing,” I replied. I kept shifting my eyes from my feet to Scotty, making sure I wouldn’t fall.

“School is important,” Scotty agreed. “But having fun is also important. You can’t truly succeed unless you actually enjoy your life.”

I was so drawn in by his words that I now only focused on him.

“I obviously don’t know the meaning of the word ‘fun’,” I said.

“Well you’re about to find out,” he said smiling.

He grabbed my hand and pulled me away from the wall. He started gaining speed, taking me along with him. I was thrilled and terrified at the same time.

“Oh my gosh!” I shouted. “This is freaking me out!”

He laughed and shouted back, “That’s a good thing!”

We went around the circle once, this time passing everyone up. On our second time around I felt my feet go out from under me. We both fell simultaneously and landed on the hard wooden floor.

I looked at Scotty with fear in my eyes.

Then I started laughing.

We sat on the ground laughing while people swerved around us. Our laughs were loud and probably obnoxious, but at that moment I didn’t even care.

Scotty stood up and leaned down to grab my hand. He pulled me up next to him as he grinned widely at me.

After skating and talking for a little while longer, we left the rink and went to get ice cream.

“So did you have fun?” Scotty asked before taking a mouthful of cookies and cream.

“You know what? I think I did,” I replied.

Scotty seemed satisfied with that answer. I felt a sudden rush and I don’t think it was from the chocolate ice cream I was eating.

“You should really burn that math book now,” he said, chuckling.

I grinned. “Not gonna happen.”

We went back to the beach and sat on the same bench we met on earlier in the day. The air was so fresh as I took a deep breath in, feeling so at ease.

A soft wind blew a strand of hair in my face. Scotty turned to me and tucked it behind my ear.

He stared at me and then brought himself closer.

The moment his lips met mine, I seriously considered burning my math book.

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