Look at her. If only she knew the possibilities racing through my mind. What I could do to her, what I want to do... Charli's eyes scanned the body before her. She sighed in defeat, But I could never do any of them, not without your permission. Her eyes skipped to the clock beside her.
Charli knelt down and placed a hand on her friend's small shoulder. "Adelah, it's time to get up. Your class starts soon." Adelah's eyes fluttered open and searched Charli's crinkled gaze.
She rolled over.
Charli watched Adelah's golden locks cascade down her pillow. "I made you eggs. They're waiting for you at the table." Adelah looked at Charli through the corner of her eyes.
"Your favorite." Adelah swung her blanket off to reveal black sweatpants and a tank top. Charli swallowed hard, avoiding her friend's protruding chest. Wear more clothes, at least.
Adelah hopped out of bed and strolled over to the kitchen, muttering, "Thanks."
Charli watched her hips sway as Adelah walked out the door before scrambling after her. "No problem! You know I'd do anything for you."
As Charli held open the school doors, she said, "I'll walk you today."
"Thanks, but you know you don't have to. I mean, you walk me every day."
Charli grabbed Adelah's hand and smiled, "I know, but I want to." Adelah glanced at her.
"Why do you take care of me so much?" she asked. Charli remembered the promise she made Adelah's parents.
It was a month before graduation. Charli was at Adelah's house as usual, watching their favorite sitcom.
"How do you think I should tell them?" Adelah asked from her seat on Charli's lap. Her head fit the crook just right.
Charli's hand stopped playing with the blonde lock that had fallen from Adelah. "How about just sit them down?"
"But what if they freak out? Their baby would be leaving them."
Charli looked down to Adelah and smiled. Her hand found Adelah's under the soft blanket, and she squeezed. "I'll be there. They'll be fine if they know I'll be with you."
"Thanks," Adelah said, squeezing back.
As Adelah pulled Charli's arm over her, the sound of the door opening resounded in Adelah's ears. She flinched, peeking over the couch to see her mom bring in the groceries. Charli followed her gaze.
"Here, let me help with that," Charli told Adelah's mom, her gentle fingers lifting Adelah off her.
"Oh, why thank you, dear. It's always lovely having you here."
Adelah watched Charli take the few bags from her mom. The thunder in her ears almost drowned out her mother's next words.
"Dear! Charli's here," she called out the door. Adelah heard her father shuffle inside with more bags.
"Oh, hello, Charli. How's my girl doing?" he asked.
Charli smiled, "I'm fine, but--" She looked to Adelah and motioned for her to speak. Adelah shook her head. 'It will be fine,' Charli mouthed to her.
Adelah sighed, "Mom. Dad. Can we talk?" They turned to look at her, their eyes full of worry.
"Sure, sweetie. Let me just put these bags in the kitchen," her mom spoke.
Charli sat down next to Adelah and held her hand under the table for support. She fought off the tingling of her fingers and squeezed. Adelah nodded to her.
Adelah's parents sat down across from them and waited for their daughter to speak.
"I--This fall, I want to move out for college. I found this great apartment a few minutes away, so I can walk. There's this great coffee shop I got a part-time job at. I won't need you to pay my rent or anything." Adelah's parents looked in shock.
Their little girl, their only girl, wanted to leave the nest, to spread her wings. The same girl who couldn't lift a finger without breaking something. The same one who didn't know how to cook or clean, or even make her bed.
"Um, Mom. Dad. I'll be her roommate, so you don't need to worry. I'll make sure she's taken care of." Adelah's parents exchange a look before nodding.
"Make sure you take care of our little girl. You know how she is, so I'm sure it will be a lot of work," Adelah's mom said.
Her father chimed in, "Are you sure you can handle it?"
"Of course! I've known Adelah since we were little. I already know all her little habits. Plus, she's super cute. How could I say no?" Adelah brushed off the compliment without a second thought.
Since the age of seven, Charli has called Adelah cute and adorable. Adelah didn't understand why at first since she hadn't done anything to be called such, but by now, Adelah has heard such things so much, she's grown used to it.
Adelah's parents let out a sigh of relief at Charli's words. They knew if Charli lived with her, Adelah would be safe and sound. After all, Charli was inseparable from their daughter.
Charli looked to the waiting Adelah and said, "You are precious to me. That's why I take care of you."
"I don't need any other reason," Charli told her. I would have done it, even if your parents didn't ask me.
Adelah still didn't understand but enjoyed having her best friend around. Charli's presence was comfortable, and Adelah needed that during her time away from home.