With her lips pressed together in a thin line and with her arms crossed, Ellie Roberts stared into the abyss that was her closet, searching through what seemed like endless thrifted finds for the perfect outfit to wear to tonight’s party. It was indeed a bit unusual that the girl would be in attendance, as normally she’d be working a closing shift at the diner, but she had made a vow to herself that this year she would try to break out of her shell and have a little fun while she still could. So, she found herself getting ready alongside her best friend in the hours before they departed for Christian’s house.
Everyone would be there tonight- both Rosefell and Liberty kids -and out of them all, the only person that Ellie was intent on avoiding was Rico. She somehow had managed to go all week without running into him (aside from spotting him on the first day), but knew that luck would run out tonight since it was practically guaranteed that he’d be present. This meant that even if she didn’t intend on talking to him, she still had to look damn well good.
Grabbing two hangers in order to present them as options, she pivoted on her heel to meet Lil’s gaze. “Alright, which one? Left or right?”Lilith
was sitting on the edge of her best friend's bed, legs crossed as she silently rolled a blunt over her rolling tray. At the sound of Ellie’s voice, Lilith’s head snapped up as her eyes examined the two choices in front of her. ”Honestly, babe? The second one is way too formal. I know we’re low-key trying to impress the Liberty cuties but… no. That’s gross.”
Taking a lighter, Lilith gently ran the flame back and forth across the wax strip to help the blunt dry faster. ”I like the first one. You know I do. I adore that outfit everytime you wear it - but I also think you could do better.”
The brunette vocally grumbled, letting both the hangers drop from her hands and fall to the floor dramatically. She was sure one of those outfits would have been good enough for the party, but now she was back at square one. Even though she knew her friend was right (as always), she still was frustrated. Finding something to wear wasn’t normally this hard! “Ugh, fine. Let me see what else I have.”
Turning back around and leafing through her options again, Ellie spoke over her shoulder to Lil.“How many of those are you making?”
The girl inquired curiously, not directly implying that she wanted in, but her interest clearly piqued.
Ellie’s reaction put a small smirk on Liliths face. A small huff through her nose signified the girl's amusement as she readjusted on the bed, and the question resulted in the shrugging of her shoulders. ”At least five - one for each of the storage tube thingies and one for now. Maybe more. Just depends on how long we hang out until the party. Plus what I don’t smoke now, I’ll smoke later with someone at the party, so...”
Her voice trailing off, Lilith began to roll another blunt. ”You know… the offer always stands to smoke with me. Sure, the choking sucks, but it’s worth it.”
Ellie sighed, resigning for a moment from scavenging her wardrobe to flop down on the bed in momentary defeat. She peered over and watched as Lil rolled another blunt with delicate fingers, a true art form of it’s own. For as long as the two had been friends, and as many times she had been offered a joint or a hit from a bong, Ellie had never smoked. Partially because she had been scared to death when they talked about drugs during Health class for the first time, partially because she’d seen how Ri- her ex
could get when he mixed too many things together, and mostly because she was afraid of how she’d react while high. But something about tonight and the mood she was in was making her extra curious about joining Lil in her escapades. “I know,”
Ellie replied, always aware of Lil’s open door policy. With a slight pause, she let her train of thought become words, “Like, how high will I be if I smoke with you? Is there like a tolerance for weed like there is for alcohol?”
The brunette asked in her naivety, knowing that her friend would probably laugh at her dumb question. “I’m just like really nervous for tonight.
Lilith cleared her throat and narrowed her eyes as she tried to concentrate. This one wrap wasn’t wanting to stick shut, and it looked like she might have to double wrap it. It was a little annoying, but it also burned a little slower, so it was worth the pain. ”Well, love… like with anything else in life, every person is different. Some people have to smoke a little bit more when they get high, some people a little less. Also depends on the strains. And there’s different kinds of highs and --”
Pausing for a brief moment, Lilith glanced over to see the look on her friend's face. ”Okay, that might be kinda scary. Let me put it this way.”
Putting her rolling tray of supplies to the side, Lilith turned to look Ellie in the face, her legs crossed on the bed. ”The strain that I have is called Cherry pie. It’s what we call an Indica hybrid, so it’s really gonna mellow you out.”
Ellie’s brain moved at a mile a minute as Lil tried to explain the intricacies of smoking, but all she was focusing on was the high. Of course she was nervous, as such is anyone when trying something new, but she trusted her friend with her life (quite literally) and so she knew that Lil wouldn’t throw her in the deep end without a life vest. “There’s different types of weed? I thought it was all the same thing…”
The brunette sighed, burying her head into a nearby pillow. “How the fuck am I supposed to be going to art school and plan on surviving in college if I don’t even know that there’s different types of weed?!”
Her words muffled, she replied to Lil with a grumble. Lifting her head up, she returned her gaze to her friend. “I’ve missed a lot, haven’t I...”
She trailed off, referencing the fact that instead of going to parties, she’d been working around the clock at the diner. ”Baby - listen. At the end of the day it is all the same. It all burns, it all smokes, and it all gets you high - unless it’s just really shit weed.”
Lilith took a moment to light the first of her treasures, inhaling deeply before letting the smoke exit through her nose. ”Are you okay, E,”
she asked, clearly concerned as she got off the bed to open the window. Taking another hit, she looked at Ellie. ”Something seems…. off.”
The brunette exhaled deeply once again, “I don’t know.”
She replied honestly, staring blankly at the ceiling. “I thought I was okay- I thought I was over it- but of course I had to see Rico on the very first day of school hitting on some Liberty blonde and it made me question everything.”
Ellie explained, the words just tumbling out. It was an uneasiness that she had felt all week but opted to keep to herself, but as it always went, she knew she couldn’t lie to Lil.“I sometimes feel like I made the wrong choice and breaking up with him was a mistake.”
Lilith listened as her friend explained her current dilemma, her eyes widening at the mention of Rico’s name. So he
was the problem. Putting the blunt out in the ashtray, Lilith made her way over to Ellie’s closet, trying to see if she could find a revenge outfit. Hands on her hips as she huffed in frustration, she shook her head. ”Look - I know that you loved the guy. I mean, how could you not?”
As Lilith began shuffling through the clothes in the closet, she began to feel the heat rise to her face. Rico had been an ass to Ellie, and Lilith had never forgiven him for it - no matter how many times they had hung out. ”But! He broke promises. He lied. He manipulated. He came home at odd hours in the morning, not caring if you had plans or if you were in the right mind to deal with his shit. And he didn’t treat you right.”
The more upset Lilith got, the faster the words came out. Taking a deep breath, she yanked the two most appealing pieces from the closet she could find - a white crop top and jean shorts. ”I’m sorry. I don’t have any right to be upset. But I remember how he treated you, and I’m sorry, but I don’t think I’ll ever forgive him for it, either. Now - if somewhere down the road you do end up taking him back then so be it. But don’t forget what he did, and don’t forget how he made you feel. Breaking up with him back then was the right choice. And now that I know what’s wrong...”
Tossing the clothes to Ellie, Lilith picked the ashtray up from the bedside table. ”I suggest that we find a way for you to have a good time tonight - starting with that outfit.”
The brunette watched as her best friend’s demeanor made a complete 180 from the moment previous, her statement about Rico clearly striking a negative chord and resulting in an off- colored tangent. But she couldn’t blame her- Ellie would react the same way if Lil was in a similar situation and as she listened to the words that quickly fled from her lips, the girl tried to align herself with the mindset that her friend was in. Lil was right- her ex had made empty promises, he hid things from her, and he always knew that she’d come to his aid even when it was inconvenient. And as much as Ellie was head over heels for him at the time and would do anything for him, looking back, the behavior shouldn’t have been tolerated in the slightest.
As her friend threw options her way, the brunette inspected the shirt and shorts choice from her closet before slipping off the outfit she was wearing in order to try it on. As she pulled the white cropped tank over her head, she realized it was more revealing than she’d normally wear, the fabric just hitting above her belly button. The same was discovered as she stepped into the shorts one leg at a time. With both pieces on, she responded to Lil. “You do have a right to be upset, you know. Just because you didn’t date him doesn’t mean you weren’t hurt by his actions too…”
Ellie paused, not wanting it to sound as though she believed he had cruel intentions. Because he didn’t, so she clarified. “But he’s not a bad person either though- he just clearly needed help with getting his priorities in check.”
The brunette inspected herself in the mirror before breaking her train of thought to address the clothes she was wearing. “Is this more of what you were envisioning?”
Ellie asked, turning to see her backside in the reflection, “My ass isn’t hanging out of these shorts, is it?””I know he’s not a bad person, and I know people change,”
Lilith said, relighting the blunt. Talking about Rico had a way of killing your buzz. ”But despite all that… just don’t get hurt.”
Flopping back down on the bed, Lilith laughed at Ellie’s reaction. ”That’s perfect!”
she exclaimed, genuinely pleased with the job she had done. ”For the current situation - there could not be a better outfit. Besides - you have a nice ass and it ain’t gonna look like that forever.”
Shrugging her shoulders, Lilith took another hit. ”But seriously - we can find you something else if it’s too much. Or… you could just say fuck it, think about the fact that it’s Senior year and hit this shit so I don’t feel so bad about smoking a whole one by myself. Your call.” “No,”
Ellie blurted, continuing to gaze at herself
in the mirror. The more she stared, the more she liked the outfit and how she looked in it. The shorts hit her hips just at the right spot to emphasize her natural curves, and the tank hit her midriff in the perfect place to draw the eye upward. “I think it’s just enough.”
The girl directed her attention away from her reflection and towards Lil, as well as the blunt she was holding. Debating with herself for one last moment, she finally walked towards the bed and extended her hand, agreeing that if there was ever a time to smoke, it was now. Besides, what’s the worst thing that could happen?“Fuck it, this is happening.”
Grasping the blunt delicately with her thumb and index finger, Ellie walked towards the window and brought it towards her lips, inhaling shallowly at first but then deeper. Even though she had never smoked before, she had seen Lil take a hit about a thousand times at this point, so she knew basically what to do. As her lungs filled, she tried to resist the urge to cough, and managed to exhale almost completely before letting one or two gentle ones slip out. Heat graced her cheeks and Ellie smirked as she handed the blunt back to Lil. “Are you proud of me?”
Already bursting with excitement before Ellie took the blunt, this moment easily made the list of Lilith’s top five most shocked moments. Standing by and watching eagerly to see if Ellie’s first hit would be good or bad, she nodded her head in encouragement as she took the blunt back from her friend. ”Eleanor Roberts - I have been waiting a lifetime for you to smoke with me,”
she said, laughing. ”And yes. I am completely shocked at how well you took that. My first hit was an absolute disaster.”
Taking another hit, Lillith looked at Ellie. ”What do you say you go do your makeup and I’ll get us an Uber to the party?”
The brunette laughed along with her bestie before nodding in agreement. “Sounds perfect. Let’s make tonight one to remember… or not.”
Ellie winked before grabbing her makeup bag and heading towards the bathroom to complete her look, preparing for the night ahead of them.