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After Ashley opened the door for Spencer again and buckled in Cody, the bear, they were off. Again she refused to tell Spencer their destination. Spencer relaxed knowing wherever it was she’d love it just because Ashley was taking her. She didn’t have to wait long as she could tell exactly where they were headed just by the smell in the air, which brought a smile to her face. Ashley continued to drive along the shore well after the streetlights stopped passing by overhead.
“Here we are.”
Spencer looked out the window. “Oh wow, the dark,” she said sarcastically.
“Don’t get cute with me, Carlin. If you can help yourself.” Ashley came around to open Spencer ‘s door after pulling a blanket from the trunk. “Follow me.”
“Lead the way.”
Ashley suddenly stopped in her tracks. “You think Cody will be okay while we’re gone?”
Spencer looked at Ashley incredulously saying, “I think he’ll be alright.”
“Cody is a girl, and I hope you’re right. That’s the first stuffed animal anyone has ever given me…except for my father.”
Spencer would have laughed at Ashley’s omission if it hadn’t been for the look in Ashley’s eyes and the tone in her voice. “Tell me about him?”
“No, your father.”
Ashley continued walking. “Oh, nothing to tell really. He’s dead.”
Spencer was shocked at the nonchalant tone in which Ashley told her such an important detail of her life. “I’m sorry, Ash.”
“Nothing to be sorry about. I’m sure you’ve heard the story.”
“Actually, I haven’t.”
“You and Michael don’t talk at all, huh?” Ashley asked seriously.
“Well, now that you mention it, we don’t talk about anything too serious. And even when we do it’s certainly not about you.”
Ashley nodded understandingly.
“I’d rather hear the details about your life from you anyway,” Spencer insisted. “So, your dad, tell me about him.”
The two continued down the shore as Ashley recounted the story about her rock star father.
“Wow, that’s your dad? My parents are like super big fans of his band.”
“Thank you very much,” Ashley smiled proudly.
“He sounds very special.”
“He was one of the only people that ever really cared about me.”
“What about your mom?”
Spencer almost felt like she was prying, but she was curious and she knew talking could prove to be therapeutic. Ashley didn’t seem to mind recounting the details of her life.
“She’s just the means of my creation, nothing more. I’ve been a burden to her since I was born and she wastes no opportunity to remind me of that. When my dad died me and sister took our inheritance and got out of that devil ladies house as fast as we could.”
“Sister?” Spencer was realizing she knew nothing about Ashley and vice versa. This little outing was a good idea.
“Yeah, Kyla. She’s my half sister. We met for the first time when we were in high school.”
“That must have been something.”
“To say the least. We hated each other when we first met. But after time we realized we were all each other had. So we grew to tolerate each other and now I love her more than anything.”
“That’s great. She sounds pretty special too. Where is she?”
“She goes to Columbia.”
“So she’s the one that got the brains then. I was wondering.”
Ashley frowned. “Ouch, friend.”
Spencer gave her shoulder a nudge. “Don’t feel bad. You got the looks.” Please tell me I didn’t say that out loud!
“You’re quite the charmer. I’m going to have to watch out for you.”
Spencer was ecstatic to have the covering of night to conceal her deep blush. “So are we going to stop walking some time soon or are you planning to murder me?” Their destination was a welcomed subject change.
“Relax there, princess, it’s just a little bit further.”
“That.” Ashley pointed to a small cliff they’d come to. The earth seemed to just drop away and the moon looked close enough to touch.
“Oh my gosh, Ash,” Spencer gasped as she took in the gorgeous sight before her.
“Beautiful isn’t it?”
Spencer found Ashley eyes riveted to her face. She turned and looked her in the eyes, the flecks of gold standing out incredibly in the moonlight. Spencer never pulled her eyes away saying, “Breathtaking.”
Ashley had to look away. She found that she could feel oddly intimidated by Spencer at times. Her seemingly endless kindness coupled with the strength of her azure gaze just forced her to crumble. “Come on, let’s sit.”
As they took a seat Spencer was very mindful of the amount of space between them. Michael remained in her thoughts no matter how hard she tried to point her brain elsewhere. Despite that, the silence between them was comfortable.
Spencer was first the first to break it asking, “How’d you find this place?”
“I was having a particularly bad day and I needed to get away. I just got on the road and drove. I ended up here. Been coming ever since.”
“So this is like your special place?”
“And you brought me? I’m honored.”
“Well, you’re proving to be really special too.”
Spencer frowned. “Why do you do that?”
“Do what?” Ashley looked at Spencer with confusion. She was being sincere and couldn’t imagine her words being offensive.
“Why do you say incredibly sweet things like that? Or the other extreme, incredibly sexy.”
Ashley was really confused now. “I’m sorry, but I was just being honest.”
Spencer turned to face her. “I know. That’s what’s making this even harder for me.”
“Making what hard?” she asked in just above a whisper.
Silence fell between the pair at these new revelations.
Only inches apart, both of their eyes drifted to each other’s lips. An anticipatory feeling loomed deliciously between them. Neither knew who made the first move, but soon the space between them was rapidly disappearing.
Spencer’s ridiculous ring tone for Michael ripped through the moment destroying it. They both let out a frustrated growl as they pulled apart.
I feel like that bitch is watching me sometimes, Ashley thought. She just knew this had to be punishment for the bet. That’s the only reason why they could have such a perfect moment utterly ruined.
“Hi. Nothing much. Really? Oh…okay…yeah…right. See you soon.” Spencer shut her phone and looked at Ashley. “I have to go. Michael’s study group let out early.”
Ashley felt disgusted at the sound of that name. Surprisingly she was more disgusted with herself than Michael. This whole bet thing was getting out of hand.
“Okay. We should go anyway. Look Spence, I need to tell you…”
“Ash,” she interrupted. “Can we talk about this some other time? If Michael beats me to my room I’ll never hear the end of it. I’d to be able to do this again sometime.”
“Of course. If you do I mean.”
Any ideas of coming clean were thrown out as Ashley’s heart soared. “Let’s get you back then”
“You sure we can make it in time?”
Ashley smiled. “I drive a Porsche babe, daddy taught his baby how to drive.”
Spencer laughed as they rushed hand and hand back up the beach. Ashley opened up Spencer’s door, threw the blanket in back and peeled off back down the road.
“Your father did a great job teaching you,” Spencer complemented when they made it back with time to spare.
“I had the best time with you tonight.”
Ashley smiled. “Me too.”
“Um…Mike has to study all weekend. I’m free if you are.”
“Suddenly my schedule is wide open.”
Spencer smiled then leaned over to give Ashley a kiss on the cheek before getting out the car. Ashley wore a goofy grin as she watched Spencer disappear. She sat and thought a few moments after Spencer was gone. It was disturbing to realize that she was going to have to talk to Michael.