I thought I'd give you a taste of Memoires of a Crazy Cat Lady. It hasn't been thoroughly edited, so I hope you won't hold that against me too badly. I did run it through Grammarly, I'd been asked to use the site to see how I liked it. Meh. Im not a fan of sites that you have to pay for before getting a look at your free trial. Let me know what you think.
He held my hand, breaking the connection only to shift his little Suzuki as it trudged up the mountain trail. I could hear my sister in the back seat chatting to her "kinda" boyfriend, but it was really just background noise. I was holding his hand.
I wasn't certain if the butterflies in my stomach were from excitement, nerves or fear, I just knew I had a crush and he liked me back! It was enough. We talked a bit, nothing exciting, just wondering how the other person had grown up. He'd never been back East, and I'd never seen the desert.
We parked and the guys hauled the heavy stuff down one mountain and up another, only to disappear behind the ridge.
"Are you ok?" My sister asks, concerned about how my asthma will effect me at this heightened elevation with all the unknown allergens about.
"Yep," I reply between gasps for air. I hated being sick and having no control over it. The last thing I wanted was for him to see me use my inhalor. I'd rather die.
"Do you want me to stop for a minute so you can do your thing?" She asks quietly, knowing how humiliated I was at having this disease. "They'll be busy for a minute."
I pulled my inhaler out, took my puffs and Gerald walks over the mountain's crest.
"You guys coming?" Gerald asks, noticing me trying to hide my inhaler from him. "Hey, you okay?"
The concern in his voice caused a blush of humiliation to burn in my chest.
"I'm fine." I mumble.
"She's got asthma." My sister blurts out, much to my embarrassment. "She's not used to the mountains."
If a hole opened up next to me, leading to a fire-y death at the center of the earth, I'd have happily jumped in.
Gerald came down the mountain, ran his fingers across the backside of my hand and grabbed the last of the stuff out of his Suzuki. My sister and I continued up to where Andrew was setting up the tent. I was nervous about staying in the middle of the desert with two strange boys, but Veronica knew them, so they couldn't be all bad. She was, after all, my sister and I trusted her.
Veronica and Andrew crawled into the tent to argue and make-out. I was quickly beginning to understand that this was their relationship's MO. Gerald took my hand and walked over toward a large boulder where we continued our conversation.
"So, are you really okay?" He asks me, wondering what I'm hiding from him.
I hang my head, pulling out my inhaler to show him I wasn't doing drugs or some other nefarious thing.
"I have allergies and asthma. I'm not used to the lack of oxygen here." I confess. "Where I'm from, there's a ton of humidity and I'm closer to water level. The oxygen content in the air decreases the higher up in elevation you go, did you know that?"
I was babbling. It was a nervous tic I'd discover I had, much later in life. I'm sure I continued on with some medical jargon, but he just smiled at me.
"At least you're okay." His smile was open and I could tell he was just as shy as I was, he was just better at hiding it.
We sat on the boulder, talking about school and our dreams of the future, watching the multitude of stars emerge in the sky. I sighed as I leaned into him, partly for comfort, partly because I was freezing my butt off. It got cold quickly once the sun set, even in the middle of July.
Casually he slipped his arm around me, smiling contentedly as he held me.
"I love the stars." I whispered with a sigh.
"Me too. I was thinking of taking Astronomy in college, maybe minoring in it or something." He whispered back.
"Oh ya?" I asked, slightly surprised. In a teasing note, I continued. "Where's the big dipper?"
"There." He replied as he pointed to a cluster of stars. "You see the three stars sloping down like that, and the other three curving into them, like a bow and arrow?"
He pulled me tighter, pointing at the stars as he described them. I could barely pay attention over the pounding of my heart.
"Yah," I replied, grateful that we were still whispering. I couldn't have managed anything louder at that moment if you paid me to.
"That's Scorpio. Half the year he's in the sky, half the year Orion is. You'll never see them in the sky together."
"That's too bad. Orion's one of the few I can find." I replied, looking up at him.
His chocolate eyes were staring back into mine. There was a heart beat of a moment before his lips fused to mine. He tasted like beer and breath mints. My heart thundered in my chest while the arm that wasn't already next to him, gripped his shirt. His tongue slipped past the barrier of my lips, tangoing with mine in a dance as old as time.
I moaned softly as we kissed under the stars, melding completely into Gerald's embrace, no longer caring or knowing what was going on around us. All that existed in that moment was us. We were fused together, not knowing where one left off and the other began. It was perfect. Heaven.
So of course it had to be ruined.
Veronica and Andrew came out of the tent, arguing again, only to pause and start teasing us. The two shy people, making out under the stars and being completely, utterly romantic. Before I could become too mortified, he clasped my hand and led me into the tent.
"It's freezing here. I don't understand how it gets so cold when it's so hot during the day." I complained, coming back to myself from the euphoric haze of lust.
"I think it has something to do with the dryness and the elevation." He replied softly. "Why don't we zip our bags together, share warmth?"
I bit my lip between my teeth, wanting what he offered so badly, but knowing I wasn't ready to go as far as he probably expected me to. Before I could let logic ruin the night, I simply nodded. Whatever happened, would happen. I was sixteen after all, and almost all my friends had done "it."
He snuggled into the bags, opening them so I could snuggle in beside him. He was still wearing all his clothes, so he couldn't be looking for what I thought he was. I took my shoes off, burrowing into the sleeping bags with him. His arms wrapped around me seconds before his lips found mine again. The tent grew warm with our desire until Veronica stormed in, followed closely by Andrew. They had a tentative truce, one that wouldn't last long.
"We're tired. You two have had enough time to do whatever, so good-night." She said with a hint of jealous smirk. Only I would've noticed the tone.
Gerald pulled me close so I could lay my head on his chest. We fell asleep almost instantly, cuddled in the embrace of our blossoming attraction. It was the first time I'd ever slept with a boy.