"Were you doing anything special?" Roman could tell he'd surprised Angie and even Abel, too, as Abel let out a little chuckle when he opened the door.
It wasn't a Saturday but just an after school afternoon, late in the school year. Roman didn't know if school was out or not.
He watched Angie suck in a breath and Abel grinned from ear to ear.
"Were we doing anything special, Angie?" Abel looked at her, but she kept sullen, not even eye contact.
"She made lemonade and we're making no bake cookies." Abel informed Roman once he got into the livingroom.
"How do you make those?" Roman knew the best way to get to Angie was possibly through Abe.
"Well, I'll show you." Abel lead the way to the kitchen. Yes, there was a melting pot of chocolate goo.
"Is that oatmeal?" Roman questioned.
"Peanut-butter too." Abel clarified.
Angie was awful quiet as if she might be part of the audience, waiting to see what Abel might do. Not Roman.
"So?" Roman looked at Angie.
"So what?" She didn't look all that happy to see him, but of course, Abel was. He got out a spoon for Roman.
"What's this for?' Roman winced as if he might be witnessing the cookie monster's transformation.
"You know, what its for." Abel giggled.
"You are a bad boy, aren't you?" Roman smiled.
Abel only smirked and dug into the goo. It wasn't long until chocolate was all over them.
"LOOK WHAT YOU DID!" Angie made a face of disgust. She headed for the paper towels, but Roman knew that was no way to go.
He landed a warm wash cloth on Abel's face first.
Roman couldn't help but laugh, thinking Angie wanted to blame him for all of Abel's actions, as if he were a bad influence.
Of course, Abel smiled as if he were cupid, after all..and he knew where this was going way before either of them.
"I..I was wondering ..if you'd like to go out with me." He looked at Angie.
"Can I go too?" Abel was jumping as if he wanted to go now. Not next week.
Angie sighed as if she really shouldn't.
"You, don't have too." She shook her head, no.
"But..but I want too. You and Abel are practically my only two friends." He told them.
"Seriously?" Angie was full of doubt, and yet she made him want to be here more. Roman did wonder how she'd be if he actually showed up at her front door.
Carly could sense it coming. First it was the nightmares. The thoughts of her mother pulling her up close, slapping her, stinging her face so hard..she'd never know she was bleeding. Then the bruises from the lashes. Sometimes, her mother scratched her with her sharp fingernails.
Carly gritted in her sleep. She didn't want to see that sort of horror coming to Jen's house, but she knew very well what her mother would say.
"Ain't no child of mine gonna get it on with a bitch!" That was only the beginning. Her bitter words could drag her down like a disease that left her helpless. She knew she'd be crying. Just like her mother always told her, Carly was not tough enough. So she got to packing.
"What are you doing!" Jen's raspy voice was used to cheering not getting worried over someone, thought Carly who stuffed her backpack with fresh undies and red Twizzlers.
"Just gonna lay low for awhile." Carly looked at her as if she'd done it before. There were a few old houses she knew off. If worse came, well, there were the shelters.
"But..but I don't understand."
"You, don't need to understand." Carly told her. Already, Carly's right eye was flinching. She needed to be gone before her mother came.
It was warming up. Her mom was probably waking up from winter and needed to find out where her family went. And she would find them. She always did.
"Just keep the baby safe." Carly could at least hope she had a good home. The baby deserved one.
She didn't want trouble.
She hugged Jen hard.
"I love you, so much." Carly fought back tears. She wanted to leave before dark. Honestly, she didn't even want Jen to know this much, but she already did. And Carly needed to go.