Chapter 9 – Totally Oblivious

The day that we spent at Six Flags was an interesting one. First of all, it wasn’t all that hard for me to convince Dani to get on any rides. That should have been my first clue – she hates those things.

Secondly, things were getting less and less awkward by the minute. Where I used to find it totally weird holding hands with her and acting like a couple, it was becoming more natural. I was finding myself touching her without giving it a second thought. That, and there wasn’t anyone there for us to fool. There was no reason for us to be acting that way.

Third, and probably the most important, she’d been making jokes about actually liking me all day. I don’t know if she thought it was funny, if she was trying to see what my reaction would be or what, but that really should have been a tip off. Of course, I thought I knew Danica. You know, that fact that she was my best friend should have made this easy. I should be able to read her like a book.

Unfortunately, she’s a girl and I’m not so good with girls. Sure, they flock to me and it’s easy for me to get them. But understanding exactly what they’re thinking? I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to do that. They make no sense to me. So when Danica made all her little jokes about having a thing for me, that’s all I thought they were – jokes! I mean, what would you think?

“Don’t worry about it, I’ll pay.” I said, as I pulled out my wallet.

She looked up at me and grinned. “Well I should hope so, seeing as I’m hopelessly in love with you and all.” She said, linking her arm with mine.

Seeing as that was the first comment she’d made of that nature that day, I was kind of taken aback. “What?”

Staring at me in all seriousness, she explained further. “Of course. Why do you think I came up with this plan? It was so I could get you to see how much you really liked me.”

I didn’t reply, I think I was too much in shock. There was a tense moment of silence before she burst out laughing.

“Relax Nick. I’m just kidding. Obviously I don’t like you.”

Well, what would you think? Because I really didn’t know if she was being serious or what. And it went on like that all fucking day. I mean, I was pretty sure she was just messing with me the whole time, but then Bev decided to make a comment to me.

“You’re totally oblivious.”

What the hell did that mean? I didn’t have a clue, and when I asked Danica about it, she just seemed to brush it off. God damn it, girls confuse the hell out of me.

For the most part the drive home was really quiet. Danica sat in the passenger’s seat fiddling with her CD player. I tried as best I could to concentrate on driving and not think about this, but it was no use. I had to find out what was going on.

“Danica?” I asked, and she glanced at me, taking her headphones off.

“Sorry, did you say something to me?” She asked.

I rolled my eyes. “No, I was talking to the other Danica in the car.” I said sarcastically. “Of course you.”

She shook her head. Sarcasm had never been her favourite trait of mine. “What’s up?”

I took a deep breath. “Do you actually like me? Because honestly I can’t tell anymore.” I asked, maybe with a little too much exasperation. Oh well, I was confused!

She paused. Shit, that wasn’t a good sign at all. “Um…” She stammered.

What the crap? She wasn’t supposed to say ‘Um’! She was supposed to say ‘No, Nick, I don’t like you at all. God, I was just kidding. You need to relax.’ No, this wasn’t good at all. “Dani? Do you want to be going out with me for real?”

She sighed. “I wouldn’t be opposed to it.” She said slowly.

Yeah, a simple ‘Yes’ would have been just as good, Dani. How the hell did this happen? If I had been thinking straight, I probably would have asked her a million questions. But I didn’t. “For real real, not for play play?” I asked, using a long running inside joke of ours.

“For real real.” She repeated quietly, looking at me for the first time in the duration of this conversation.

Shit… Danica was my friend. I didn’t know if I had feelings for her… at least I didn’t think that I did. And even if I did, AJ would kick my ass… well he’d already done that, so I wasn’t too worried about him. But Brian… I’d already told Brian he could have her. Could I really go back on my word like that?

Fuck, what a messed up situation this was.

At that moment I realized I hadn’t said anything for a while. Danica was looking at me, waiting for some kind of response. I think she probably wanted me to tell her that I liked her too, and that we were going to live happily ever after, or whatever else girls think of when they like a guy. But I couldn’t say those things to her. Not when I didn’t know how I felt, and especially not with the Brian situation.

“I need to talk to Brian.” I finally said, and she seemed to accept that as an answer. She nodded, and put her headphones back on.

And so we continued on the very awkward drive back to the hotel.

~~~

Once we got back, Danica left the car without a word and quickly retreated to her hotel room. I sighed to myself, this was not going well at all. She was clearly upset, but there really wasn’t anything I could do about it! Sighing, I made my way back to my room. And I nearly made it there without incident.

“Yo, Nick!” Damn it, AJ!

“What’s up, J?” I asked, putting on a cheesy grin. “Have a good day of shopping?”

He ignored my question and cut right to the chase, which he always likes to do. “Why isn’t Dani with you?”

Oh crap, I still had to go on with this stupid plan, didn’t I? Things were getting more complicated by the second. I had to come up with a quick lie. “She’s not feeling well, too may roller coasters I guess.” I replied dumbly.

“Well you should be with her, nursing her back to health!” He said suggestively. I rolled my eyes. If I thought that kissing Dani would be too awkward, having sex with her would be nearly impossible.

“Yeah, whatever.”

AJ gave me a funny look. I was usually quick to match AJ with sexual innuendos, so he caught on to the fact right away that something wasn’t right. “What? Have you not sealed the deal yet?”

“Shut up.” I mumbled. I really didn’t want to have this conversation with him, all I wanted to do was go to sleep. Playing the part of Danica’s boyfriend just got a million times more awkward.

“You haven’t!” AJ laughed. Of course he wasn’t about to let this go. “And here I was all jealous because you were the one that was fucking her, guess I don’t need to be.”

“Not everything is about sex.” Whoa, wait. Did those words just come out of my mouth?

AJ wasn’t buying it, and rightfully so. “Yeah okay, Nick.” He said. “That girl has got you wrapped around her fingers.”

I glared at him, AJ really had no idea what was really going on. “She has me whipped?” I laughed a little. “Look at you, seeking me out to find information. Quit acting like a twelve year old who’s never been laid, I could have Danica right now if I wanted her. Too bad I can’t say the same for you.” I snarled.

“You’re on thin ice, Carter.” AJ said, but he backed off. “You don’t deserve her.”

“And you do?” I shot back, getting in his face. Awkwardness with Danica or not, she was still my best friend and I didn’t appreciate AJ talking about her the way he was.

“Women, women, break it up!” Howie said, suddenly poking his head out of his hotel room. “I can hear you all the way down here!”

“Get lost, AJ. This isn’t you business.” I said, going into my hotel room without waiting for his response. I fell asleep almost immediately, but not without thoughts and worries about Dani crossing my mind. Things were about to get a whole lot more interesting.

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