"You wanna hear something funny?"

Paige smiled. This girl, she thought, this perfect girl. "I would love to hear something funny."

"When I was trying to talk myself into being interested in boys… I would look for guys like you."

They made eye contact and chuckled softy.

"Like me how?"

Paige hung on every word, half believing everything that was happening wasn't real somehow.

"The kind that would pull me up on stage and get me to sing. Because I would never do that on my own."

There it was, a green light. For a brief second, Paige hesitated. Then she sighed letting everything that had plagued her for so long go if only for a moment and leaned in to Emily. Paige was tired of fighting it, tired of the confusion. All she knew was right now, sitting there with this gorgeous girl who always managed to say exactly the right thing, she wanted to kiss to her. Emily, this girl who was everything she wasn't and everything she wanted to be, moved in too, needing a way to soothe the broken girl sitting on her window seat. Neither could deny the overwhelming chemistry and attraction between them and, right then, they couldn't even bring themselves to want to.

Paige was overcome. Everything was becoming too much. Her father, swimming, but most of all this girl, the girl she was kissing. Emily was gentle and sweet and Paige couldn't resist taking Emily's hand in her own, letting go, clinging to this moment of release.

Emily deepened the kiss, softly tugging on the ends of Paige's hair. Paige felt amazing and their kiss was filled with passion and longing, feelings fueled by a burning mutual attraction and frustration over circumstance. Paige squeezed Emily's hand tighter as thoughts of what this would mean crept through, reality tugging her back in.

Emily felt it too and began to pull away, looking into Paige's eyes. Her eyes were filled with sadness and defeat but there was something else too: a look of absolute adoration. She felt it every time Paige looked at her. Paige looked at her as if she was the most beautiful girl in the world. She looked at her and saw someone strong and fearless. She made her feel powerful and worthy. No one had ever seen Emily like that or made her feel that way.

Filled with affection and a general appreciation of the side of Paige she was just beginning to discover, Emily moved in and started kissing Paige again. The sweetness of their past kisses was left behind and was replaced by Emily's utter need to take as much of Paige in as she could. She kissed her mouth, their tongues and lips moving together in a feverish dance.

Emily moved to Paige's neck and Paige could not stifle a moan. She had never done anything like this before. She had never felt like this before. She felt drunk, intoxicated by the way this stunning girl was making her feel. She felt shaky and she tingled all over, wishing she could stay right where she was forever.

Then as Emily moved her lips back to her own, Paige felt Emily's hand move up to her breast. She inhaled sharply and softly whispered, "Emily…"

Emily pulled back, looking into Paige's eyes once more, finding uncertainty.

"I'm sorry," Emily breathed, pressing her forehead to Paige's and taking her hand. "We should… slow down. I just…"

She breathed out the words in a husky, sensual voice and it only took a second of looking into Emily's lust-filled eyes for every rational thought and fear to leave Paige's head and for her to capture Emily's mouth in another passionate kiss. This time with Paige moving to kiss and nip at Emily's neck and ear.

Emily moaned and Paige could swear she had never heard anything like it in her life. It was a noise that set off every nerve in her body. She felt dizzy and excited and even with everything in her world failing apart all she knew was that she wanted more. She unlocked their hands and over Emily's clothes ran her hands up Emily's side, slowly and with soft pressure over her hip, stomach, and breasts. It was teasing and sensual, enough to leave them both longing for so much more.

They separated moments later, breathless. Roaming hands ceased movement and Paige swallowed hard.

"I s-should go, " Paige stammered quietly, reality and fear returning. Before Emily had time to respond Paige was standing. She straightened her dress and looked away, blushing. "Tonight was…incredible. You are incredible."

Emily stood and moved closer to Paige, feeling the other girl stiffen at the closeness. She guided Paige's chin up to force her into making eye contact. They were both still noticeably aroused, but a seriousness fell over them.

"You'll figure it out, you know," Emily told her, "and if you wanted, I could be here when you do. I can still be your friend."

They looked each other over with intensity and the overwhelming need to say more, to promise more. Even with everything that had just happened between them, reality won and comforting words failed them. The truth was, Paige wasn't ready and Emily had enough chaos in her life, chaos that left no room for secrets. They both knew the truth and yet still Emily, the proverbial bright spot in the darkness, smiled sweetly.

"You know though," referring to their window seat rendezvous, "I don't normally do that with my friends…"

Paige shook her head and couldn't help but grin back at her. "Ha ha very funny."