Author: MdX MaxX PM
After a long 3 years following On Tour, SSX is back and better than ever! With 14 returning competitors and 4 newbies, who knows what awesomeness, romance, randomness, and/or mayhem will happen? Get ready for the experience! PLEASE READ NOTE ON FIRST PAGERated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Romance - Chapters: 8 - Words: 47,585 - Reviews: 26 - Favs: 11 - Follows: 7 - Updated: 02-20-10 - Published: 11-23-08 - id: 4673038
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
(Commentary: COULD IT BE!? IT IS!!! AN UPDATE!!!!! I finally got around to wrapping up this last chapter. I'm sorry for taking so long, my interests tend to fade in and out. I had already uploaded most of this chapter a while ago, so there isn't much that's brand new, but it's enough to satisfactorily close the chapter. So I hope you guys enjoy Chapter 7!)
Hmmm, I see Disclaimers in all the other stories. Maybe I should put one.
Disclaimer: I don't own SSX, EA does. I only own my original characters, whom cannot be used without my permission.
Chapter Seven: Happiness Peak
"*sigh* Seriously? I just fell asleep like two seconds ago..."
Zach slowly rolls over from his left side to his right and reaches out to the alarm clock on his nightstand. He taps the button on top a few times but it doesn't seem to be shutting off.
"Hey, what's going on here?"
After tapping it a few more times he lifts his head to see why it won't shut off.
"What the- Oh, wait, that's my wallet... *sigh*"
He moves his hand over to the left to shut off the alarm, but rolls off the bed before he can. Luckily his pillow had fallen on the floor while he was sleeping, and it breaks his fall. Sort of.
"Dammit, what's wrong with me today!? I only had one drink last night... Aw, and I've got a headache too, what else can go wrong?"
Now angry, he stands himself up and slams his hand down on the alarm clock, stopping its loud, incessant buzzing.
"That's better. *sigh* Why I bother waking myself up at 8 AM I have no clue..."
Zach plods into his bathroom and quickly grabs an Advil from the medicine cabinet before enclosing himself inside the shower, too tired to remove his shorts. He turns the knob all the way up, but is greeted with an unpleasant surprise as he immerses himself in the stream.
"Ahhhhhhhhhhh! Shit, that's cold!!"
He hastily shoves the shower door open and jumps out, nearly falling on the floor. Now dripping wet, he stands there panting from his sudden exertion of energy.
"Why the hell is the water ice cold!?"
Turning back around, he realizes he made a small crack in the frosted glass shower wall from thrusting the door open so hard.
He slaps his palm to his forehead in exasperation. "Oh well that's just great, what am I on, like strike five already? Geez..."
Zach angrily snatches a towel from the towel rack and quickly dries himself off before going back to his bedroom. Once there he throws on a t-shirt and walks over to Moby's bedroom. The door's open a little so Zach takes a peek inside.
"Moby, you awake?"
Apparently not; he's looks like he's making out with his pillow. He starts to mutter something in his sleep.
"......mmm...Zo...mmm...You smell fantastic, my love..."
Zach closes the door and shakes his head vigorously, trying to get that disturbing image out of his head.
"...Ewww...... *sigh* Okay... Let's see who else's water is freezing. God I hope it's not just me..."
He storms over to the front door and swings it open. One out in the hallway he finds Zoe peeking her head out of her room doorway, her hair half wet and her body covered in a black bathrobe.
"Oh, hey Zoe. Your water freezing too?"
"Okay, good, it's not just me." Zoe leaves her room and enters the hallway. "So what do you think's happened?"
"Well, who else causes 98% of the mayhem that goes on here?"
Zach nods his head. "Right. What's his problem, anyway?"
Zoe shrugs. "Beats me, he's just an insane asshole that thinks he's all that. But I mean he can be pretty cool sometimes... when he's drugged up, anyway..." She then eyes Zach's shorts quizzically. "Hey, uh, you normally shower in-"
"Nah, I just woke up on the wrong side of the bed, I guess..." Zach starts walking down the hallway, fists clenched.
"Where ya goin'?"
"To give Psymon a piece of my mind!"
"Dude, hold up!" Zoe runs to catch up with him. "Ya can't just confront Psymon like that, do you know what he's capable of? Shit, if I wasn't sort of his friend I'd probably be dead by now! Why do you think everyone else is so scared of him?"
"Zoe, I've dealt with a trio of armed robbers before, I think I can handle Psymon..."
Zoe stops walking for a second, a little surprised by the statement. Then she shakes her head. '*sigh* Crazy Brit...'
Zach arrives at Psymon's door, the room closest to the lounge, and starts beating it furiously.
"Psymon!!! Open up, I know you're in there!!!"
After about 10 seconds, the door quickly swings open and an annoyed Psymon shows up in the doorway, his hair dyed a deep red and half-gelled.
"What the hell is your problem, I was in the middle of something!!"
"What the hell is my problem? You shut off the hot water!!"
Psymon smiles and lets out a quiet maniacal laugh. "Ha, damn right I did, I hate hot water..."
"Well don't go and shut it off for everyone else! Cool your own damn water! Leave the rest of us out of it!"
Psymon's maniacal laugh grows louder. "Hahaha, okay okay, so wait, you expect me to just go back to the basement and turn the hot water back on!?"
"Why else am I here you asshole!? I wanna take my goddamn shower!!"
Zoe's backing away slowly, praying this doesn't escalate to physical violence.
"Oh look, the Brit's using mean words now! Ha, and what're ya gonna do if I don't!?"
Zach holds up a fist. "This thing ain't clenched for nothin'!"
'Oh God, Zach, please don't...' Zoe doesn't know what to do.
"Hahahahahaha, you don't know me, do you? If you did you'd know I don't feel pain! Pain registers as pleasure to me, you can't hurt me!!"
Zach continues to stare murderously at Psymon with his cold blue eyes, not backing down even a little. His hair is nearly touching Psymon's at this point.
Suddenly, Zach develops a smile of his own. "So what? Pain is just that, Psymon, a feeling. No matter how good it feels to you, I can still do more damage than you've ever experienced. Is that what you want?"
That seems to get through Psymon's hard skull. It gets through really well. Psymon actually seems a little scared, but only for about half of a split second.
Psymon's face turns sour again. "*sigh* Move it." He shoves Zach backward and starts walking in the direction of the lounge.
"Where are you going, Psymon?" says Zach in a clever voice.
"Where the hell do you think I'm going, stupid Brit!?" After a few more seconds Psymon disappears through the door.
Zach turns back around to see if Zoe's still there; he'd tuned everything else out since the confrontation.
"Hey Zoe, you still- Ah, there y- ...What's wrong?"
Zoe stares back at Zach, wide-eyed. "......Shit..."
Zach gives her a quizzical look. "You okay?"
".........How in the hell did you do that? No one else would have been alive that long..."
Zach smiles. "Yeah, well... I'm not no one else..." He starts to walk back to his room.
"Hold up, Zach."
He turns around and finds Zoe eying him curiously.
"So I've been around Moby and his family for a while now, and I've come to learn their...language. But you don't seem to speak like 'em..."
"Yeah, I get that a lot. People expect me to say 'bloody hell' and 'mate' all the time, don't they?"
"Hmm... Well, my mom's from America. Heh, kind of weird, a rich British man falling in love with an American woman......" Zach's eyes suddenly widen. "Oh crap, wait, I didn't mean it like-"
"No, don't worry man, Moby ain't rich."
Zach chuckles a little. "Ha, well anyway, I won't bore you with the details, but just take my dad's accent, mix it with my mom's dialogue and you get Zach Speak. My parents always used to call it that."
Zoe's amused. "Haha, Zach Speak, that's funny... Well, uh, maybe you can tell me the details sometime..."
"Sure thing, Zoe."
Zach keeps smiling at Zoe, and she realizes what she just implied. "Whoa, wait, not like that!" She points a finger at him. "You better not get any ideas! You see this ring!?"
Zach starts to laugh. "I'm just kidding, Zoe, I wouldn't dream of it! Heh, unlike Moby..."
"What was that, mate?"
Zach whips around and finds Moby staring at him, arms crossed, a sly smile on his face.
"......Oh, uh, nothing, Moby, we were just......uh......hey look, it's Zoe!" He suddenly makes a dash for the room.
Moby doesn't even turn to chase him, he just looks at Zoe and keeps smiling. "So, what'd I miss, love?"
"Oh, you missed a lot..."
"This is gonna be hilarious!"
Eddie is quickly slipping a letter-sized envelope under the door to Brodi and JP's room.
'Alright, now I just gotta go tell Elise...'
Eddie jumps up from the ground and starts rushing over to Elise's room. After about two seconds he bumps into someone and stumbles, arms flailing.
Regaining his footing, he whips his head around to see who he hit. He finds Sarah slowly rising off the ground, holding her shoulder.
"Oh, snap! You okay, Sarah?"
She lets go of her shoulder and meets her eyes with Eddie.
"Oh... Yeah, I'm fine. Heh, sorry about that..."
"Nah, it's my fault, I wasn't lookin'. See ya!" He starts dashing down the hall again, not even waiting for her reply.
After a few more seconds, he reaches Elise's door and quickly knocks on it.
He can hear Elise's voice from inside the room. "I'm doing my hair! Can't you wait?"
"No, it can't! It'll only take a minute, I promise!"
About 15 seconds later, the door swings open and an annoyed Elise stares at Eddie.
"This better be worth my time..."
Eddie chuckles. "I sure hope so... So anyway, I just gotta tell you something."
"...So tell me."
"Okay, I need you to not be on Ruthless at 3:00 today. Also, can you try not to let Brodi see you until then?"
She looks at him quizzically. "Umm...... Why?"
Eddie looks both ways, then leans in close toward Elise's ear.
"Well... I'm gonna play a prank on Brodi..." he whispers.
"...I repeat. Why?"
"Because... I just wanna scare him. C'mon, it'll be hilarious!"
Elise glares at him for a few more seconds before developing a small smile. "You're lucky we're friends, Kid."
"So you'll do it?"
"Eh, alright. I mean it is a harmless prank, right? Not like Psymon's idea of a prank..."
"Yeah, no, it's fine."
"Alright then. Now go away, I've gotta finish with my hair." With that, she shuts the door in Eddie's face.
"Hey, that's wasn't very nice!"
Eddie can hear Elise's mocking laughter through the door.
"Pssh, some friend you are!" he mutters.
"I heard that!"
"Oh..." Eddie quickly leaves to avoid getting in any more trouble with Elise.
'Alright, the stage is set! Lemme get some breakfast now. Mmm... I could go for some waffles right now... and some bacon and eggs... with french toast on the side...'
It's about 9 AM, and Atomika's at the Starbucks in Metro City. He's sitting at one of the tables with his Dell Latitude business laptop, doing a bunch of SSX event organizing. He's got his jade green sunglasses on today, and has a cup of iced coffee next to him.
Atomika looks up from his screen to find Allegra in the chair across the table from him.
"Hey, Allegra. What's up?"
"Nothin', just drinkin' some coffee here." As if on cue, she takes a long gulp of her coffee.
Atomika's eyes widen. "Isn't that hot?"
Allegra shakes her head. "No... Not to me, anyway."
"Okay..." Atomika shrugs and continues to run his fingers over his keyboard.
"So, Atomika, Remember that rule you said about boys and girls rooms at night?"
Atomika finishes up and closes his laptop. "Yeah, what about it?"
"Well, I'm just wondering... What are the consequences?"
Atomika grabs his iced coffee and takes a long gulp, as if he just remembered it's there.
"...Are you stalling or something?" Allegra gives him a quizzical look.
Atomika quickly puts down his drink. "Um... no, I just wanted to take a drink..." he says hesitantly.
Allegra starts to smile. "...There is no consequence, is there?"
Atomika's eyes widen again. "...Of course there is, you just haven't given me the chance to say it yet."
"Well, here's your chance..."
After about another second Atomika starts reaching for his iced coffee again.
"Aha! You are stalling! I'm right aren't I?"
Atomika lets out a sigh of defeat. "Well, you're half right. I just made up that rule to try to prevent things like... relationship conflicts. I just hate dealing with those..."
"I hear ya dude, I see those on TV all the time. I would not wanna be caught in one of those love triangle thingies..."
"But anyway, if nothing like that happens then I don't have much reason to really enforce it. I'm no police officer... Why'd you ask, anyway?"
Allegra seems to hesitate for once. "Well... Do you know if Kaori's okay?"
Atomika raises an eyebrow at her. "Actually, I saw her in here earlier today......... Come to think of it, she did look a little more upbeat than usual... Why?"
"Oh, nothing, it's just that Mac's room is next to mine and last night I heard sort of a scream, it sounded like her. I thought Griff might have done something..."
Atomika looks amused. "Ha, what could Griff do? He may be 18 but he's no more of a threat to anyone than he was when he was 13..." He picks up his drink again and starts to drink the rest of his iced coffee.
"Well, what else would make someone scream...?" Allegra rests her head on her hand for a few seconds, watching Atomika, before she thinks of something.
"Hey... Do you think Mac and Kaori had sex?"
Atomika suddenly coughs and empties half the contents of his mouth onto his laptop. Allegra bursts out laughing.
"Wow, dude, all I said was sex, you don't gotta drown your computer in coffee for it!"
Atomika quickly grabs some napkins and wipes off his laptop and his mouth. "Way to be so subtle about it, Allegra..."
"I'm, I'm sorry, I-I didn't know that, tha- ahahahaha!"
"Allegra, breathe! Oxygen, woman!"
"Okay, okay!" She calms down after a few more seconds. "Whoo! Okay... But seriously, do you thi-"
"I heard you the first time."
"...I'm not gonna jump to any conclusions. Kaori's okay, let's just leave it at that."
"Aw, man, you're no fun. Alright, I'll change the subject. Let's talk about your love life."
"You really like to gossip, don't you?"
"Only when I'm hyper on coffee."
"Right... Well, if you must know, I haven't had a girlfriend since high school."
"Really? What do you do on Saturday nights? Do you hang out with anyone?"
Atomika shrugs. "I have a couple friends in the SSX staff I talk to sometimes, but other than that I'm usually solo." He quickly finishes what's left of his iced coffee.
"Oh... Really? I mean you're no nerd, Atomika, you're a cool guy, I figured you were a people person, y'know?"
"Yeah, well, not so much." Atomika pulls back his sleeve and checks his expensive-looking wristwatch. "Hmm. I should probably be heading over to the station now, gotta set up for the broadcast."
"Really? It takes you almost..." Allegra checks her digital watch. "...45 minutes to set up?"
Atomika cradles his laptop under his arm and rises from his chair. "Yep, let me tell ya, being head event organizer and Radio BIG DJ isn't so easy. But hey, I enjoy it... Well, I'll see you later I guess. Take care, Allegra." Atomika holds out his hand to her.
Allegra looks puzzled. "What? Do I owe you money?"
"It's called a high five, ever heard of it?"
"Oh! Riiiiiiiiiiiight... Heh..." Allegra slaps his hand. "But wouldn't a wave be more appropriate?"
"Yeah, well, I can be somewhat of a nonconformist... I like your hair, by the way."
Allegra smiles and runs a hand through her hair in reaction. "Thanks, I was wondering if this was a good style for me..."
"Yep, looks good on ya!" With that Atomika turns around and leaves.
Allegra continues to play around with her hair. She had gotten rid of her braids and let her orange-blond hair grow halfway down her back. She figured guys like girls with long hair.
But she's not thinking about guys at the moment. Well, at least not in plural form.
'No girlfriend since high school? Hmm...'
Later that morning, Mac and Griff are hanging out in their room at the Lodge. Mac's eyes are glued to the TV as he constantly changes the channel every second. Griff's on the other side of the room, practicing his juggling with tennis balls.
"Hey, Mac, I think I can juggle 4 for half a minute now, wanna see?" Mac doesn't seem to hear him. "Mac? Yo, Fraser..." Mac's eyes remain locked on the screen. Griff suddenly tosses one of the tennis balls directly at Mac's head.
"Ow!" Mac snaps out of his trance. "Dude, what was that?"
"A tennis ball."
"I know it's a tennis ball, doofus, why'd you hit me with it?"
Griff smiles and shrugs sarcastically. "Sorry, it slipped."
"Yeah, uh-huh. Try that again and this remote's gonna 'slip' right at your groin, then we'll see who's smiling."
"Alright, you don't gotta get hostile, geez..." Griff walks a few steps into the kitchen and grabs a 7up out of the fridge. He looks at Mac for a few seconds, still flipping the channels endlessly, and takes a deep breath before speaking.
"So Mac, Kaori's your girlfriend, right?"
Mac turns toward Griff with a 'duh' look on his face. "No, Griff, I'm dating Britney Spears."
Griff puts a look of disgust on his face. "Oh great, you made me picture it, thanks a lot Fraser!"
"No problem. But actually, Kaori's my fiancée now."
"Oh, so you proposed to her. Well that explains it."
"Nothing." Griff quickly downs the rest of the 7up, letting the lemon-lime soda burn his throat.
"Dude, just where are you going with this?"
Griff tosses the can in the trash. "Well, I've been thinking, and... well... Mac, how long after you met Kaori did you fall in love with her?"
Mac looks confused. "Uh... I dunno, maybe like... a year? Man, I don't see what this has to do with anything!"
Griff's leaning on the counter now, his head down in thought. "Mac... do you think love at first sight exists?"
"Well, they put it in those stupid Disney movies all the time, don't they?"
"You're not helping..."
"...Well I don't know, I've never seen it happen in real life. I still don't- Hey, Family Guy's on! Hey, this is the one where Lois gets..."
"Y'know, I think I'm just gonna call Brodi, he can probably help me."
"No, wait, I'm listening." Mac turns his face away from the TV for once, but only for a second. "Wait, is this about Sarah?"
"Wow, good job Captain Obvious, you solved the mystery! Here's your prize!" Griff suddenly grabs another tennis ball and throws it at Mac, harder this time.
"Ahhh! Man, that one really hurt!" Mac starts rubbing his forehead. "You nearly knocked my eye out, dawg!"
"Good, maybe then you wouldn't be so seduced by the TV!"
Mac starts to say something in response, but finally looks up at Griff, seeing his troubled expression. He finally tries to help him. "What's the problem? You know you love her, and she loves you too."
"See, that's the thing. I'm really not so sure. Is it love, or is it infatuation?"
"Dude, don't go all Shakespeare on me, I don't get that stuff..."
"What? That's not... *sigh* Never mind that, I'm not sure if I really am in love with her or not."
"...Shouldn't you be able to figure that out for yourself?"
"That's the thing, man, I've never had these emotions before!! I really don't know!! *sigh*............ Sorry."
"Nah, it's cool. Go on."
"Well, I thought you could help me figure it out; you're 5 years my senior; you've been in your relationship for what, 4 years now?"
"Well, actually no, last season she was with this guy named Sid."
"Sid? That crazy Japanese guy from last season with the massive sunglasses and no last name?"
"You know him?"
"I saw him on TV a couple of times."
"Oh, OK... But anyway, back on topic..." Mac sighs and thinks for a second. "... Hmm...... Well, Grommet, I probably can't really teach you how to love someone. Uhh... How about I tell you what I think love is. It's probably the most I can give you."
"I can use anything right now."
"Okay. Well...... Okay, I think, that love's mainly about making each other happy. The way I see it, you've gotta... I dunno, share yourself...... compromise, that's the word I'm lookin' for. You've gotta compromise, you can't expect to get everything you want out of the relationship. And, uh, make sure not to be selfish. Well, that kind of means the same thing... Anyway, just try to make her happy. Don't change yourself into something else, but give her your best......... Yeah, that's how I see it... Hey, pass me those Cheetos right there."
Griff tosses the Family Size Cheetos bag at Mac. He pulls the bag open and instantly starts devouring the twisted cheese puffs.
Griff nods his head in understanding. "Y'know, I think I actually get it...kind of. Thanks...... Wow, I didn't think you were like that, Mac."
"Yeah, well, Kaori made me watch some mushy romance movies with her, so I kinda know what girls like."
"Wait, that's not exactly what I meant. I always thought you were the ladies' man type, picking up dates left and right, the cool guy..."
"Oh, no, that's not me. I actually never really had feelings for any other girl..."
A few more seconds later, Mac bursts out laughing, little orange particles flying out of his mouth. His attention's completely turned back to the TV.
Griff leaves the kitchen and goes into his room. After about a minute, he comes back out, fully dressed in snowboard gear, carrying a white snowboard.
"I'm going up to Happiness."
Mac turns to look at him. "Why? We're done with Peak 1..."
"I'm just gonna do some more thinking. I need some place peaceful."
"Oh. Okay then, have fun."
Griff walks over to the door to put on his snowboard boots. As he shoves his feet into one, he feels something blocking his foot from going in all the way.
"What the...?" He reaches into the shoe with his hand and feels something soft. He grabs it and pulls it out, finding that it's a clump of cotton balls.
"Mac... Who the hell put cotton balls in my boots!? Ew, they're all covered in toothpaste! And something el-... EWWW!" He throws the clump at the wall opposite him.
Mac turns his head toward Griff, eyes wide. "Dude, I swear it wasn't me this time!"
"*sigh* Whatever, I'm just gonna go get my other ones."
A few minutes later, after switching boots, Griff heads out the door. "See ya later, Mac."
"Alrighty." Mac watches him as he leaves and closes the door. He shakes his head in disbelief. "Man, I can't believe how much that kid's matured in 4 years... Wow." He turns back to the TV and reaches his hand inside the Cheetos bag again. His eyes go wide again.
"Damn! I ate this whole bag already!? Man, how is that possible!?"
Sarah immerses herself in the peaceful atmosphere of Happiness as the noontime sun shines brilliantly above the course. At this time of the day, the sun's reflection off of the snow is borderline blinding, but Sarah doesn't care. The tranquility of the Peak 1 backcountry and the calming sound of her snowboard sliding across the white powder is enough to make her feel relaxed. It's already her favorite course.
It hasn't snowed since the competition began, so there are still multiple snowboard tracks in the ground. But as Sarah lands a jump off a small cliff, one track in particular catches her eye. Shifting her board into a horizontal position, she slows to a halt and inspects a trail that veers off to the left of the course into a sort of mini-forest. It doesn't seem like an accident; there's nothing that could throw an unsuspecting boarder toward the trees. There has to be something over there, even if it is off-course.
Sarah may not interact with other people very well, but she's always enjoyed exploring and admiring nature. She decides to follow the trail, maybe to try to find something worth seeing.
After winding through the trees in the mini-forest for about 30 seconds, she approaches what look like the opening to a cave or tunnel. 'Whoa... The others never mentioned a secret cave or anything... Maybe I'll find something cool in here...'
The trail still continues, so obviously someone else has found this already, wanting to keep it a secret. After about 10 seconds the ground shifts from snow to ice as she becomes enclosed in a long tunnel. She realizes the tunnel's going downhill; she'll have to get off her board and hike back if she needed to turn around.
About a minute later, Sarah exits through the other end of the tunnel. She quickly stops and re-adjusts her eyes to the bright light before trying to see where she is. She slides forward a few more feet before stopping, awestruck by the view in front of her.
Sarah finds herself looking off a tall cliff, overlooking a dense forest of snow-topped evergreen trees. Clearly this area is off-course. In the distance, past the trees, she can see a desolate-looking area with untouched white powder and boulders strewn across the landscape. Over to the far right she can just barely make out the left edge of the Happiness course, the specific area where many an avalanche has happened. To Sarah this spectacular view looks like it belongs in a famous painting.
"Oh my God...... I wish I had a cam- *gasp*" She quickly reaches into her pocket and pulls out her MCOMM. Smiling, she double-taps the screen to bring up the menu and selects the Camera option. She lines up the photo and taps the Capture icon.
"Oops, I left the flash on..." As she starts to snap another photo, she starts hearing a sound. She instantly recognizes the sound, the distinct sound of plastic sliding against plastic.
'A Rubik's Cube? Someone else must be here, then...' Suddenly feeling somewhat awkward, she starts traveling in the direction of the sound, realizing the snowboard trail changes to footprints. After a few more seconds of walking to the right, she realizes that the cliff is like a curved ledge. After rounding the curve of the icy rock wall behind her, she finally finds the source of the sound, and the person making the sound. He's sitting on the ground with his hood covering his blond hair, his white snowboard leaning against the rock wall. He seems deep in concentration, furiously twisting and turning the cube's shifting sections. Suddenly he stops and mutters to himself.
"Wait...it's Ri,F,Ri...F,F? Oh wait, no...umm...oh! Right, it's Ri,F,Ri,B,B..."
He continues twisting the cube again, and Sarah just watches him, not understanding anything he just said, but smiling nonetheless. Only a few more seconds later, he stops and holds the solved cube in his hands, nodding in satisfaction.
Sarah finally says something. "Hey, Grommet."
Griff quickly throws his hood behind his back and looks up at Sarah, wide-eyed. "Oh! Hey, Sarah..." He suddenly throws the cube over his shoulder. "Heh, how long have you been standing there?"
"I don't know...... About a minute?"
"Really? I didn't hear ya..." Griff pushes himself off the ground and stands up. "So.........what's up?"
"Oh, nothing........." Sarah bends down and unlatches her feet from her snowboard. "So......this is kind of a weird place for practicing a Rubik's Cube, isn't it?"
"Heh, yeah, well, this is the only place I can without being called a nerd..."
"Who's called you a nerd before?"
"No one yet, but knowing the others, I really don't want to take that chance..."
Sarah chuckles, then walks toward the edge of the cliff, admiring the extensive view a second time. "So, Griff...what is this place?"
Griff smiles and walks up beside her. "This place? I dunno... I just call it Happiness Peak..."
Sarah turns toward him with a quizzical look. "Happiness Peak?"
"Yeah... I mean it's not the peak of anything... Heh, technically, it's not Happiness either..." Griff shrugs his shoulders. "But hey, it sounds much better than 'Backcountry Cliff' for sure."
Griff chuckles a little as Sarah turns to face him. "So how did you find this? Does anyone else know you did?"
"Hmm... Well, it was the middle of season 3. The rest of the boarders had gone to see a movie, but I couldn't come since it was R-rated. They said it'd give me nightmares, as if I still believed in the boogieman or something... Man, I told them my dad let me watch R-rated movies, but they wouldn't listen... But anyways, they just left me there at the lodge by myself."
"Well that's kinda mean... Why didn't they let you see another movie?"
Griff shrugs his shoulders again. "I dunno, none of them wanted to babysit me I guess. They did treat me like I was 5."
"...Who leaves a 5-year-old in a lodge by himself?"
"Haha, I know, right? They confuse me sometimes. But anyway, it was a Thursday and normally I'd be watching Cartoon Network reruns, but there was gonna be a race on Happiness the next day so I wanted to try and find some shortcuts. So, long story short, I was looking for a shortcut in the trees, found the tunnel, and yeah... The rest is self-explanatory. I just kept it to myself for some reason; looking back I'm surprised my big mouth didn't tell the whole world..." Both of them chuckle a little. "Yeah, but now I'm glad I kept it secret. It feels...I don't know, like a place where I can just...escape...*sigh*"
Sarah smiles and turns back toward the view. "I see what you mean, Griff. This view is beautiful..."
"Yeah...and it's even more beautiful today."
Sarah turns back to him. "Why is that?"
"Because... you're here to enjoy it with me."
She stares at him for a second before turning away, blushing.
"Come on, it's not my fault that I think you're the most beautiful girl in the world...... Okay, maybe it is......a little..."
Sarah turns back to Griff and smiles, her face still red. "......You really mean that?"
"Well...yeah. I mean I can be immature a lot of times, but I mean what I say." Griff leans toward her and places a light kiss on her cheek.
For the first time since she first met Griff, Sarah feels fluttering in her stomach. After thinking for a few seconds, she realizes why: he's never called her beautiful before, only her eyes. She feels closer to him than she ever had.
On the other hand, Griff's conscience starts to kick in, getting him thinking again. 'There you go again, Griff, acting out on impulses... Will you ever learn?' The doubts about his confused emotions flood his mind again, and his romantic mood seems to vanish into thin air.
After a few more seconds Sarah notices Griff's sudden change in mood. "Griff......are you okay?"
"Oh yeah, I'm fine...it's just......" Griff can't decide what to say. Should he quit bottling in his emotions and tell her he's on an emotional roller coaster? Or would it be smart to stay quiet and not risk alienating her? Follow his emotions or follow his conscience...? "No......*sigh* Sarah..."
Sarah's getting a little anxious. He all of a sudden seems very distant, as if something changed about her. "...Griff...?"
"Why do you love me?" he says suddenly, his voice barely above a whisper.
Sarah's eyes widen in surprise, not exactly because of the question itself, but from being unsure how to answer.
Griff sighs again. "Don't take the question the wrong way...it's just...... I don't know how......*sigh*... I'm just...not sure how I feel... Am I being too impulsive?"
After a few more seconds of thinking Sarah gathers her thoughts together...sort of. "Well...maybe at first, but... okay, the first question. *sigh* First of all, if I haven't said it before, I do love you, Griff. That I'm sure of......as for why? I just feel like you're......you're the first person to really love me the way you do..."
"...So...I am doing well with this relationship? I'm not rushing this?"
"What? No..." Sarah takes both Griff's hands in hers, trying to comfort and answer him as best as she can. "I really never...had anyone care about me like this. You're the only person to really ever try to befriend the lonely girl... I dunno......... I guess for years I though I was content in isolation. But then I met you... I guess then I realized how lonely I always used to be. That must be why I fell for you so fast...... *sigh* If anyone was acting on impulses it's me. I'm sorry..."
"...No, Sarah, I should be sorry... I mean I made a move so fast, I wasn't thinking..."
"...but I didn't resist. I guess you could say the both of us are at fault here. But does that really matter...? I mean... 3 days ago when we got to know each other......that's when I really started to feel like you're...you know...'the one' as they say..." Sarah's blushing furiously at this point.
Fortunately, Griff seems to cheer up again. "......*sigh* Ha, well... knowing I'm doing things right sure is a relief... Thanks."
Before Sarah can reply, Griff releases her hands and wraps his arms around her affectionately, and she does the same. Sarah's still amazed at how much he shows his love for her, it just doesn't seem like him. But she's not complaining; no one's ever shown her this much love before.
Griff's just happy that he knows his love for Sarah isn't a blind obsession; his conscience is cleared. 'This is great...no I don't have to feel bad every time I ki-'
Suddenly, Sarah pulls back a little and puts her face directly in front of Griff's, smiling and a little watery-eyed.
Griff's eyes widen. "...Crap, I said that out loud, didn't I...?"
Sarah's chuckles. "Well, I guess that's another thing we have in common..."
With that, she closes her eyes and softly places her lips on Griff's, hugging him tighter. She wants him to enjoy her kiss just as much as she enjoyed his 3 days ago. And he definitely is; Griff feels like his heart's gonna pound its way out of his chest...but in a good way.
After about 10 seconds, Griff feels a vibration in his pocket, and his ringtone starts to play. Nobody really calls him; when they do it's usually something important. Reluctantly he breaks the kiss and reaches for his pocket.
"...Sorry, I should probably answer..."
Sarah's a little disappointed but doesn't show it. "Go ahead, I don't mind..."
Griff quickly fishes his MCOMM out of his pocket and taps the answer icon, eager to get this call over with. "Hey.........umm...I don't know, did you check the......Yeah, but did you check the other path?......Oh, OK. Well, I don't know.........Yeah...Hey can you speed this up, I'm kinda in the middle of......Yeah......uh-huh......yep.........alright then......OK, see you." Griff ends the call and shoves the device back in his pocket. "I swear, when it comes to video games Tyson can just go on and on and on... *sigh* So......" *long pause* "...a few more seconds?"
In response, Sarah slowly embraces him again, staring into his eyes and smiling. Griff develops a smile also.
"...I'll take that as a yes..."
The two share another passionate kiss for about 30 more seconds, practically frozen, before Griff finally pulls away, breathing heavily.
"...My God that was amazing..."
"......Wow..." Sarah whispers, also panting slightly.
After the two cool down, Griff walks over to where he was sitting and picks up his snowboard and cube from the ground. Sarah starts strapping on her board as well.
"So...... Mortal Kombat?"
Griff turns toward her, amused. "What? It makes a good ringtone, doesn't it?"
"Ha, yeah, I guess so..."
Griff starts strapping on his snowboard. "Kinda random, but have I complimented you on your hair yet?"
"...I don't...think so."
"Well, I like it, it's soft and smells really good. I really like those silver stripes, too."
Sarah smiles her shy smile and starts running her hand through her hair in response. "...Are you trying to embarrass me with compliments today?"
Griff puts his hand on his chin and pretends to think for a second. "Ummm, maybe..."
Sarah chuckles and looks down. "Well, uh......thanks..." Griff throws his hood over his head. "So, Griff......how do we get out of here?"
"Oh, that's easy." He motions for her to come next to him at the edge of the cliff. "See that clearing in the trees right there below us? We just gotta jump down, then make our way back to the main track. Makes an excellent shortcut during a race, how do you think I got that Platinum so easily?"
"You can do that?"
"Yeah, it's just like an Out of Bounds shortcut, even though it's off-track... So c'mon, let's go!"
"...This is a pretty high cliff..."
"Yeah, but we've jumped much bigger jumps than this on the tracks already."
"Yeah, moving forward, but not...straight...down..."
"Eh, just bend your knees when you land, you'll be fine." With that, Griff bends down and throws his feet over the edge. Sarah watches him as he roughly lands on the snow below a few seconds later. He moves out of the way to give her room to land.
Sarah follows suit and swings her feet over the edge, but doesn't do so well with the landing, losing her balance and falling on her back in the snow.
"Whoa, you okay?"
"Yeah, I'm fine, just lost my balance." Sarah sits up and brushes the snow out of her hair. "......Umm...a little help?"
"Heh, right..." Griff quickly slides over to Sarah and helps her up. "...So anyway, I'm gonna head to the arcade from here...you with me?"
"...Sure, I guess... I don't really have anything else to do."
"Great! ...Hey, how about this, beat me there and I'll take you to the movies!"
Sarah smiles and starts to blush again. "And if I don't?"
"......Then you buy your own popcorn." Griff suddenly shoots off through the trees, thinking, 'Wow, that was easier than I thought it was gonna be...'
Sarah starts after him a few seconds later, following Griff's trail. 'Oh, I'm definitely not buying popcorn...'
"*sigh*... What could Elise possibly want me up here for?"
Brodi's standing at the top of Ruthless, studying the note he received from Elise earlier that morning. Her handwriting seems different, but what does he know, he hasn't seen Elise's handwriting in 7 years.
But it's a nice windless day on Ruthless, so he didn't mind taking the trip up here. 'Besides, what could Elise really want from me...? ...She has a boyfriend, right...?'
Brodi starts heading down Ruthless's steep slopes on his Yin-Yang Alpine board, enjoying the crisp mountain air. About halfway down the steep section, he spots a large orange ball a little bit ahead of him......Eddie. He's laying face down on the ground.
"Eddie? What are you..."
As he pulls up next to Eddie, he also notices that under his body is a pool of dark red liquid staining the snow. Brodi would have been alarmed right then...if he hadn't noticed the can of red paint on the ground just a few feet away.
Brodi shakes his head in amusement. "Eddie, you've pranked people plenty of times before; I didn't think you'd make such a stupid mista-..."
But upon closer inspection of the paint can, he realizes something that sets off the alarm after all.
The paint can's not open.
Brodi's head snaps back toward Eddie, still laying on the ground. The red liquid stain seems to have gotten bigger.
"...Oh no......Eddie? Eddie?"
Eddie doesn't move or respond.
Brodi quickly unstraps his bindings and rushes over to Eddie's body, somewhat afraid to touch him. "Oh no......This is bad."
Heart pounding. he quickly digs his hand in his pocket and pulls out his MCOMM to call an ambu-
Brodi lets out a small scream and stumbles backward a few feet before landing hard on his butt. "...Owww..." Somehow he kept his grip on the MCOMM.
"Haha! I got you good, Brodi, whoo!!"
Brodi stares at Eddie with wide eyes. "But...you......were-"
"Fake blood, dude." Eddie holds up a large tube filled with and covered in red liquid, the same liquid covering his shirt and the spot where he was laying motionless just 30 seconds ago. "Man, I got you with the paint can, didn't I?"
Brodi slowly gets up from the snowy ground, rubbing his lower back. "Ha ha, very funny, Eddie. *sigh* So are we done here? I have to go find Elise and-"
"No dude, I wrote the note. It's part of the trick! My cursive looks somewhat like Elise's, so it worked out! Great joke, huh?"
"*sigh* Whatever... If you'll excuse me, I'm going back to the Lodge to finish my medi-..." His voice trails off.
"...What, you're gonna go without mentioning some ancient Buddha sayi-"
"Where's my board!? It was right here!" Brodi starts looking around frantically for his board.
Eddie shrugs his shoulders. "It didn't slide down the- No, it woulda stopped right there... I dunno, dude, maybe the animals took it."
Brodi stares at Eddie quizzically. "Animals? What animals?"
"Y'know, wolves and stuff. They hang around here."
"......*sigh* Great, so my board got taken away by wol-" Brodi glances up at the sky. "Aww, and a storm's starting, what else can g-"
"Shhh! Don't say that, you'll jinx us!"
"...Eddie, where's your board?"
"Oh, it's over there......snapped in two..."
"Hehe, I'm sorry, it was supposed to be part of the prank... Gee, I really gotta start planning the after... Hey, where're ya goin'?"
Brodi's started walking down the course. "Well I'm not gonna just stand here while a storm starts! The sooner we get outta here the better."
"Hey, wait for me!" Eddie runs to catch up to Brodi. "Why don't we call someone to bring us boards?"
"Nah, they wouldn't get here before the storm started. We might as well just walk."
"...Alright then......Man, you're seeming kind of stressed for a Buddha guy..."
Brodi ignores his comment as the two start walking down the track at a relatively quick pace. But they don't make it very far before the wind and snow become much heavier.
"Dude, you sure you don't wanna just call for help?"
"Eddie, we'll be caught in the storm either way. It's better to keep moving than to sit and wait for someone to come anyway..."
"*sigh*...Man, I don't know about this......"
"Kaori... What is that?"
"...What, this?" Kaori points to the tray of food in front of her.
"Yeah, that. Are those meatballs? Those are some funky-lookin' meatballs..."
Kaori lets out a small chuckle. "No, Mac, it's takoyaki."
"Takoyaki, Mac." She says it slowly so Mac can understand every syllable. "It's a Japanese food. I used to eat it all the time when I was young."
Mac still looks puzzled. "Okay... Well, what is it?"
Kaori sighs and shakes her head. "Why don't you just try one?" She emphasizes her question by holding up one of the little spheres with her chopsticks.
Mac hesitates a little before taking a seat next to her at the table. "Okay, fine. But only because I trust you."
Kaori smiles and holds the sphere up to Mac's mouth with the chopsticks. But he takes it in his fingers instead, an unreadable expression on his face.
"I'm perfectly capable of feeding myself, Kaori," he says jokingly.
Giggling at his comment, she watches him take a bite, bringing about half the sphere into his mouth. After a few seconds of chewing, swallowing, and awkward facial expressions, Mac finally smiles.
"Hmm, that's actually not so bad." He quickly pops the other half into his mouth quite eagerly.
"Yeah..." Kaori lets him chew for another few seconds before speaking. "Oh, did I mention it's octopus?"
Mac's expression turns sour almost instantaneously. "Oc—Octopus?" he stammers as he desperately looks for something to spit in. Luckily, Kaori has some napkins next to her, and he snatches half of them before Kaori can react. "Ack!! Disgusting!"
"Come on, you said it was good a second ago..."
"Yeah, but... Ugh! I just don't eat things that......that used to have tentacles!"
When Mac finishes freaking out, he turns to find Kaori staring at him, head resting on her hand, smiling in amusement.
He gives her a quizzical look. "...What?"
Kaori shakes her head, still smiling. "Nothing, Mac..." She then returns to eating her takoyaki.
Mac sighs and buries his head in his hands. "Man, this is like the time my mom tricked me into eating sushi..."
Meanwhile, on the other side of the lounge, Zoe's sitting on the couch watching the weather channel, a bored look on her face.
"Damn, it's a blizzard out there. I feel sorry for whoever's stuck outside in this..."
A few seconds later somebody lands on the couch next to her. Quickly whipping her head to the side, she finds it's Zach.
"Oh, hey Zach."
"Hey Zo, what's up?" He takes a glance at the TV screen. "I'm guessing there's nothing on TV?"
Zoe gives him a mock surprised expression. "Are you kidding? The weather forecast is like, the best show ever man!"
After a few seconds of starting at each other with strange looks, they both burst into laughter. After about another 10 seconds they calm down.
"Ha, well I don't know why that was so funny," says Zoe, "but no, there's really nothing on TV. Kinda sucks since there's not much else to do now..."
"Yeah, I don't feel like playing arcade games so much."
After a few seconds or awkward silence Zach starts to speak.
"Hey, Zoe, can I ask you a question?"
"Well...remember earlier when I went to get Psymon to turn the water heater back on?"
Zoe's eyes widen at the mention of Psymon's name. "Uh, yeah. What about it?"
"Well, no offense to you, but you just looked so...scared. More scared than I could have ever pictured you." He pauses for a second. "I guess in my anger I wasn't thinking clearly, but now that I look back I'm wondering if I was putting my health—or my life—at risk..."
After another extremely long silence (minus Griff going crazy on DrumMania in the arcade) Zoe sighs and responds quietly.
"I've...known Psymon for a long time. In that time I've seen him do some things...some extremely insane things, insane even for him. I just...hmmm... When Psymon gets angry enough-"
Suddenly, the doors to the lobby burst open, and Brodi and Eddie stand in the doorway, shivering vigorously. Snow is caked in their hair and boots, and their clothes are soaked. Eddie's shirt is covered in red, and he looks like he can barely stand up. If it wasn't for Brodi holding his shoulder he probably would have collapsed right there.
Viggo is the first to say something. "Uhh... What happened?"
That comment catches the attention of everyone else in the lounge. Within a few seconds Brodi and Eddie are surrounded by all the boarders, minus Sarah, Elise, and Psymon (thank God).
"Are you guys okay?" Griff asks after a few seconds' silence.
"Of course they're not okay you idiot!" Mac retorts, "Look at them!"
"How'd you guys get caught in the blizzard?" Carol asks, concerned.
"...M-m-mommy..." is all Eddie manages to say.
Brodi finally sheds some light on the situation. "Well, long story short, Genius here managed to get us both stuck on Ruthless without boards. We walked for hours to get back here!"
"That's terrible!" exclaims Seeiah, also concerned.
"Well, why didn't you just use your emergency call on your MCOMM?" asks Allegra.
Brodi's expression turns from angry to puzzled. "Emergency call?" Suddenly all eyes are on Allegra.
"Uh...yeah. There's a feature on the MCOMM that lets you call for help if you're stuck on the mountain. Just press the button and a helicopter arrives in 2 minutes..."
The other boarders continue to give her puzzled looks (except for Eddie, who's mere seconds from unconsciousness).
"...What? Didn't Atomika mention it at that meeting one time?"
After a few more seconds of awkward silence, Viggo speaks up.
"Okay, number one, I don't think anyone gives a damn what Atomika says at those meetings, am I right?" No response. Viggo continues anyway. "And two, I don't remember him saying anything about an emergency call feature."
"But dude," replies Tyson, "you just said you don't pay attention to-"
"I know what I said!"
"Hey Viggo, calm down why don't ya? What're you so mad about?" Mac questions.
Viggo suppresses his seemingly thoughtless anger and sighs loudly. "I'm sorry, I've...just been having kind of a bad day...... I'm gonna go to my room, find some blankets for Eddie or something." He slowly walks out of the lounge, head down, hands in pockets.
Brodi interrupts another awkward silence. "Well, uh, all that aside, I didn't even have my MCOMM on me so..."
"I-I did," Eddie manages to stutter. (What? He's still conscious?)
Brodi snaps his gaze toward Eddie. "You what!?" Without even waiting for a reply, he drops Eddie on the ground (who passes out instantly) and storms off toward the rooms. "I'm gonna go meditate," he mutters as he pushes through the glass doors.
Kaori has a pained expression on her face as she looks toward the doorway. "Poor Brodi..."
Mac looks around anxiously. "So, uh... Who's gonna be the one taking The Kid back to his room...?" Silence. More silence. Mac sighs defeatedly. "...Fine, I'll do it."
The storm ended about 2 hours ago, and snow crews were quick to clear the roads and get everything up and running again. In the somewhat active nightlife, Allegra wanders through the streets of Metro City, searching for something to satisfy her sweet tooth.
After a while she happens upon a small ice cream shop. Freddy's. But it's not the name of the shop that draws her attention. It's the ominous dark brown desert sitting on one of the tables inside. And a certain someone sitting in front of the desert, eying it hungrily.
'What the... Atomika?' she thinks as she approaches the door, resisting her urge to smile.
Atomika looks up as he hears the door swing open, and smiles at the girl entering the shop.
"Hey, Allegra! Looking for some dessert?"
She gives him a 'duh' look. "Well, yeah, but now I'm more interested in that brown mountain sitting in front of you."
"Oh, this?" He returns his gaze to the huge dessert, licking his lips as he does. "This, my friend, is Death by Chocolate," he states excitedly.
"Ha, no kidding, I'm getting chest pains just from lookin' at the thing." Allegra maneuvers over to the chair next to Atomika. "What the hell is it?"
"Well, it starts off with 4 huge scoops of delicious chocolate fudge ice cream, mixed in with Oreo cookie pieces, chocolate chips, and fudge brownie pieces. Then, it's topped with more chocolate chips, more brownie pieces, chocolate crunchies, chocolate sprinkles, and gooey, warm melted fudge. Finally, a mound of chocolate whipped cream is sprayed on top, and topped with even more sprinkles and hot fudge." He licks his lips again and sighs in pleasure. "It's a chocolate lover's dream come true..."
Now sitting beside Atomika, Allegra stares at the dessert wide-eyed. "Damn... That's a lot of Calories."
Atomika's grin grows even wider. "I know, isn't it awesome!?"
A few seconds of silence pass before Allegra turns toward Atomika. "You're not gonna eat all that by yourself, are you?"
Atomika's smile neutralizes. "...Well I was..."
Allegra's mouth drops open in shock.
"But... I'm willing to share." His smile returns. "Grab a spoon."
Allegra does so, and within seconds the two are stuffing their faces with the chocolate monstrosity, loving every second of it. Somehow they manage to carry on a conversation while eating.
"So Atomika," Allegra starts, after gulping down a spoonful of chocolate whipped cream. "Do you have a nickname?"
"Uh... not officially, no."
"Well, you need one." She swallows some ice cream. "Let's see... you like A-man?"
"No, too unoriginal. Hmm... Hey, how about Atom Bomb? Or A-bomb, that works!"
"No, that sounds stupid..."
A few more stupid nicknames later, Atomika interjects.
"Hey, you know what? Why not just call me DJ? That's simple enough, right?"
"...What, you don't like Atom Skywalker?"
Atomika gives her a blank stare. "...No."
After about 20 minutes of eating, the two finally finish dying by chocolate and lick their lips and rub their stomachs in satisfaction.
"Oh my God... I've never had that much chocolate...in my whole life."
"Ha, this is nothing, Allegra, try eating a whole one by yourself. Now that hurts."
"Geez, I can't imagine... I...I think I just gained 10 pounds..."
5 minutes of idly sitting later, Atomika rises from his chair and stretches. Allegra follows suit.
"So Allegra... Wanna go for a walk? You know, to kinda burn some of this chocolate."
"Uh... Sure, why not? I've got nothin' to do."
Allegra and Atomika leave Freddy's and breathe in the crisp night air of Metro City. The two stroll down the sidewalk in silence for about a minute, both unsure of what to say. Then, Allegra decides to say something, in hope of sparking a conversation.
"So..." She pauses to think for a second. "I, um, haven't had a drink since we got here..."
Atomika turns to her with a curious expression. "Really?" he says. Allegra nods. "Hm... four days, right?" Again, she nods. "Well, cool..."
He smiles benevolently to her for a second before taking a quick glance at his watch. 10:17.
"Wow, I didn't realize it was so late."
"Why? You need to be somewhere?"
"Well, I wanted to catch the Wildcats game tonight."
"Oh, you watch baseball?"
"Yeah, I just think it's an awesome sport. Not as awesome as snowboarding, but it's cool."
Allegra nods in understanding. "I didn't even know baseball went on now. Wouldn't the weather put a damper on things?"
Atomika shakes his head, smiling. "No, it's always warm and sunny in Paradise City."
"Really? Where exactly is Par- whaa!"
Allegra's toe snags on an uneven part of the sidewalk, and she quickly loses balance. Before Atomika can even think, both his arms are around her, halting her fall.
Allegra stares at him for a second, eyes frantic. "Damn... Nice reflexes."
Atomika chuckles sheepishly in response. "Um... thanks."
After a few more seconds, Allegra straightens herself, and Atomika realizes where his arms are.
"Oh! Wow, um, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to, um..."
He itches his hair nervously as she blushes slightly.
"No, don't be sorry, it's okay..."
The two walk in a somewhat awkward silence for another minute until they reach their split-off point, Allegra heading back to the boarders' lodge, and Atomika returning to his home located somewhere in the vicinity of his radio tower.
"So... Allegra... Good luck in the races tomorrow!"
She smiles. "Yeah, I hope to see ya around," she says as she holds her hand up.
Atomika looks at her, puzzled.
Allegra's grin grows. "It's a high five, ever heard of it?"
Atomika laughs out loud as he realizes the joke and meets his hand with hers. "You're awesome. I'll see you."
He looks at her for another second, smiling, before slowly releasing her hand and turning the other direction.
Allegra continues to look in his direction, a thoughtful expression on her face. She doesn't let him get too far...
"Atomika, wait up!" She quickly closes the gap he opened between them.
"Yeah?" He turns around, finding Allegra barely an inch in front of him.
"I, um, wanna give you something..."
She bites her lower lip in hesitation before her face slowly drifts toward his, and her lips meet his slightly open mouth. Atomika's eyes drift closed as he savors the short kiss, feeling her hand resting on his shoulder.
After about five seconds, Allegra slowly pulls away and drops her hand to her side.
Atomika seems slightly stunned. "Um, did you... whoa."
Allegra gives him a satisfied smile. "Yeah..."
A few seconds of staring later, she turns around to start walking. "See ya," she whispers.
Atomika blinks his eyes rapidly a few times before smiling and turning around himself. "Whoa..." he repeats.
Allegra can't stop grinning. "Yes. Yes..."
(Commentary: Okay, well that concludes the first "block" of the story. I'm expecting this story to have three "blocks" by the end, so I still have a ton more to do. In future chapters I want to include more action and exciting events than romance, so that's to be expected. Umm... School has me pretty busy, so updates won't be frequent, but I'll make sure to pack a lot into each new chapter to satisfy all you devoted readers...however many of you happen to be out there. I thank all the readers and reviewers, you guys are my only reason for writing this story. I'm hoping it won't be too long until I update again!)