Things were the same. By day they were students, Gwen of the smart honor-roll type, Ben of the intelligent, but the hell with doing all the homework, and Kevin as the wait, I have class now?-type. By night they were fighting aliens. Ben was still trying to figure out how Gwen managed to do all of her homework and studying while out with them at least a couple nights a week.
They had even started hanging out together outside of the alien fighting. It wasn't all the time and mainly occurred when they thought alien activity might stir and wanted to be together already in case that happened. It was mainly hanging out at diners or driving around in Kevin's car while trying to figure out where to go.
But lately things had been boring and the end of the school year was arriving, meaning that Gwen spent the time studying even when they were driving around, despite Ben and Kevin poking fun at her the entire time.
One of these nights, Kevin walked into Ben's room, looking bored as he did. "Ready to go?"
"Where we going?" Ben asked, looking up from the book he was reading on his bed. "And did you break the door again? 'Cause my mom is downstairs…"
"No, I actually knocked this time," Kevin replied, seemingly exasperated from the comment. "And same thing as always? Pick up Gwen and save the world from evil aliens?"
"Can't," Ben replied nonchalantly. "Gwen's sick."
"Sick? Is she okay?" Kevin immediately reacted. It took Ben giving him a confused look to make him realize how soft he sounded. "I mean, it's not a uhh… alien disease or anything?"
"It's a cold," Ben answered slightly annoyed. "Half the school has it."
"Well come on."
Ben stared at Kevin some more. "…And where are we going?"
Kevin picked up Ben's jacket and threw it at him. "To give Gwen a visit."
Ben sighed as he rang the doorbell while Kevin stood back a few steps, arms folded, trying his best to look cool despite being the one who sped over to see her. One of these days Ben was going to get sick of sitting in the middle of this tension. He'd do anything to get him to ask her out already.
His mind was beginning to roam in that direction until the door opened. "Oh hey Ben," his cousin sniffled.
The guys looked up to see Gwen in a pair of black fleece pajama pants and an oversized ratty sweatshirt. "Wow, you look pretty bad," Kevin blurted out before thinking about it.
Gwen glared best she could while sniffling. "Thanks Kevin," she replied sarcastically before practically yelling at him. "I'm sick."
"We uh, just wanted to check up on you," Ben interjected trying to divert the fight between them. "How are you feeling?"
"Still kinda bad, so I'm not going out tonight."
"That's okay, we really weren't either," Ben answered wondering why he was the one covering up for Kevin.
"Oh okay. Then you guys can come in." Gwen stepped aside letting the boys walk into the house. "I'm just watching tv," she explained, pointing to the living room.
Ben held up his book. "I need to study some anyway."
Gwen looked over to Kevin with a questioning look. It took him a moment, but he realized that she was waiting for an answer. "TV's fine," he answered with a shrug. Ben had already moved to the large recliner and had his book open again. Kevin followed Gwen into the living room and sat next to her on the couch. They sat in silence watching the stand up comedy marathon Gwen's father had left on the television set that Gwen had not bothered to change. "So how long have you been sick for?" Kevin asked breaking the silence in the room. "You were fine the other day."
"Last night it hit me real bad," Gwen answered.
"Well clearly that's because you just stayed in and studied," Kevin teased.
Gwen glared at him again. "Because that makes perfect sense." She sighed for a minute. "Ben, what'd we do in English today?"
"Nothing," Ben answered without looking up from his book. "We had a sub today so it was some mindless work that we didn't even hand in."
"Well that's good at least," Gwen answered before falling into a coughing storm.
Kevin watched her, wanting to do something to make her feel better but not sure what he could do. After all, it wasn't like he could just go and beat up the illness. But he could go and beat up whoever made her sick…
"So are you going to school tomorrow?" Ben asked.
"Yeah… I really don't want to miss another day," Gwen whined slightly, which snapped Kevin out of his current train of thought. "Mom and Dad won't even be back until the weekend so I can't get a ride from them in the morning."
"I can pick you up in the morning," Kevin interjected sheepishly.
Ben bit his lip to keep from laughing at Kevin, thus keeping them from coming to blows in his cousin's house. It amused him to no end to see just how dumb Kevin could sound when talking to Gwen. The whole situation between the two of them hurt his brain. If they knew that they liked each other, what was the issue?
"You don't mind?" Gwen asked sweetly, clearly going for pity.
"Yeah I can do that."
"Thanks!" Gwen answered as she gave him a small hug that lingered for a moment longer. Ben had to keep from looking otherwise he was sure he'd say something. They were really starting to drive him crazy.