Riley pushed her way through the crowd of dancing teenagers who reeked of body sweat and alcohol. When Oliver asked her to prom, she imagined it would be entirely more fun than this. She had been stuck in that awful crowd all night, and while she did find some of her friends to dance with, the proximity was much-too suffocating. She escaped the crowd and made her way to the snack table, unsuccessfully searching for something to drink that wasn’t spiked fruit punch amongst the sea of stale popcorn and cookies.
“Having fun out there?” Riley looked to see Jamie approach the snack table beside her. Judging by his apparent lack of sweat and his snarky grin, Riley assumed he hadn’t been on the dance floor.
“If you call having fun being drowned in teenage body sweat and grinded on by kids you’ve never even seen before fun, then yeah, I’m having a blast,” Riley responded. Jamie let out a light chuckle to which Riley let out a giggle of her own. “I am having fun though!”
“Good.” The tension from their fight two weeks ago seemed to no longer remain between them, but there was still some hesitance. At least no one was screaming at each other yet. She tucked a strand of loose, sweaty hair out of her warm face while looking up at Jamie softly.
“I, uh, I’m gonna head outside for a cigarette. You enjoy the best night of your life now,” Jamie announced. He patted Riley’s arm and gave a visible look of disgust before wiping her sweat on his pant leg. She laughed at his reaction, which caused a smile to break out on his face. “See ya, Riles.” Jamie began walking out of the gym, digging around in his pocket for his cigarettes and lighter, but was stopped by a hand grabbing onto his arm. He turned to see Riley who had a confused look on her face, like she almost wasn’t completely sure what she had just done. She quickly gained her composure back, releasing Jamie’s arm back to him.
“Can I come with you?” She asked confidently, but had an unsure look on her face.
“Where? Outside? I mean, it’s not my private property so you can do what you want.”
“Okay, smartass, touche. But I meant as in like, can I come sit with you outside? It’s too stuffy in here and Oliver kind of ditched me to hang out with all his friends. Well, actually, I was the one who ditched him. I found Gia and slipped through the crowd and haven’t seen him since. That was maybe for the best though. He and I didn’t seem to have a lot of chemistry, I mean, we could barely hold a decent conversation! Besides, we would’ve split ways anyway when he won prom king. And you may ask why I am so sure, but I mean, look at him! There is no way he isn’t going to win-”
“Okay, okay. If I let you come outside with me will you stop rambling?” Jamie interrupted her, which she was very happy about. She was just so nervous and when she was nervous, she rambled uncontrollably. She just wanted to reconnect with him and get rid of all the awkwardness between them.
“No promises,” Riley responded with a wink, attempting to mask her awkwardness with false confidence, before walking out of the gym herself. “Actually, let’s go to Harvey’s! I’m starving.” Riley looked back at him, nervously awaiting a response. He didn’t say anything so she thought she might have pushed it too far and began chastising herself mentally.
“Fine, but you’re buying me a milkshake.” Jamie said and placed a cigarette in between his lips. It seems to have took Riley a second to process what he had actually said before giving him a grin. Jamie couldn’t help but smile. He missed this. He didn’t realize how badly until now. Jesse would be downright thrilled if he realised Jamie had taken Riley away from her date so they could hang out. Well, it wasn’t even like he asked her, she invited herself. Yeah.
“Only if you’re buying me one,” Riley took this cigarette from his mouth and placed it between her own lips. She gave him a mock-inspirational face, “Ya’ know, Jamie, you should take the wise words of Augustus Waters to heart: you put the killing thing between your lips but don’t give it the power to kill you.” She simply handed the cigarette back to Jamie which he pushed away with a grimace. She gave him a confused look, to which he answered,
“Ew, I can’t use that one now. You got your cooties all over it,” Jamie said mockingly, which Riley snorted at. Jamie took the cigarette back in his pack and pulled out a new one, placing it between his teeth and fishing his lighter from his pocket.
Riley was happily chatting which Jamie noticed was a turnaround from the gym, where she seemed stuck in her head. She was much more free and loose now, which caused a smile to spread across his face. As the two approached Jamie’s car, he brought the lighter up to the cigarette butt, but hesitated. He watched as Riley got in the car, laughing with a big smile on her face. He took the lighter and cigarette and put the two back in his pocket.