Keep Me A Secret: Chapter 3

Previously: Chapter 2 [U]

As a special St Andrew’s Day treat, here’s the latest chapter.

Rating: AA. Hallucinations of petting.

* * * * *

Chapter 3

I guess I first knew for absolute certain that I had more than just the normal friendly feelings towards Ashley when I was thirteen. I guess there was an ongoing history for a few years before that, but who really knows anything about sexuality and those feelings until puberty.

It was probably about the same time that Ashley started noticing boys that I started noticing Ashley. She was my best friend, so the fact that I was obsessed with her didn’t seem so out of place. We spent all our spare time together, mostly at each other’s houses, and we were in the same class. My life mostly consisted of school, family and Ashley, so the fact I thought of nearly nothing else was almost natural.

I do remember the first day I knew it wasn’t quite like everyone else, though. I remember it vividly.

King Middle and High School was a good school in a good zone. Despite being a public school, it had many people coming in from out of area just to partake of its excellent education and sporting programmes. The middle school allowed its students to join second-stream sporting teams as a lead in to the high school teams, but they weren’t allowed to be cheerleaders yet. So, Ashley and I were relegated to the sidelines while Aiden and my brother, Glen, were already showing off on the basketball and soccer fields.

Neither she nor I had any desire to join a team. I might have been interested in field hockey, but it was the same time as Advanced English and that was far more important to me. Ashley wasn’t really a joiner. Nevertheless, we were all expected to take part in the three annual sporting events that the school demanded of us. The first was the cross-country run, which for us was a cross-country walk. The second was the track and field day. I could never understand why all of us had to take part, given that our school had an all-state track team and they won all the events. The same went for the third event, the school swimming carnival, where the school swim team ruled the day each and every year. Why we all had to jump in the pool, I don’t know. I wasn’t a bad swimmer, but I couldn’t beat those girls who spent their lives at the beach, arms made strong by constant fighting with the waves. Ashley could surf, so Ashley could swim. But, Ashley refused.

After a very long, in-depth discussion with the vice principal, she agreed to attend and be, well, peppy, but not actually to step into the pool. This is how Ashley ended up at the swim carnival in cut-off denim shorts and a bikini top and I ended up in a one-piece suit, wet and shivering. I’d come sixth out of seven in the freestyle heats and had thereby concluded my ‘participation’ requirements. I’d just wrapped my towel around my waist when my eyes were drawn to her. They’d been drawn to her all day, but I hadn’t really thought about it prior to that moment. Her cut-offs hugged her thighs in such a fantastic manner, and her young breasts were barely contained by the black triangles of her bikini top.

That wasn’t really what I was noticing, though: I was noticing Aiden, tall and tanned and covered in droplets of cholorinated water. He was wearing loose blue swimming trunks and, even at thirteen, he was tall and muscular. Of course, I wasn’t really noticing him: I was noticing her with him. I was noticing her hand, lifting through the air, pressing lightly on the middle of his bare chest. I was watching her palm flatten against his skin as she laughed at something. She was laughing at something that Aiden said, laughing like it was the funniest thing ever, with her cute smile and winsome ways. That alone was highly unlikely, I’d known Aiden Dennison for at least a year and he’d never been funny before. Chances of him starting now: minimal.

What got me – what really startled me – was the white-hot flash of anger and betrayal that flew through my body. In one instant, I hated her, I hated him much more and I hated myself most of all. I hated myself for suddenly being flushed with the realisation that I truly believed that Ashley Davies belonged to me and no-one else. I knew, without any of the confusion that normally clouded my life, that what was happening between her and him was wrong.

I have to admit things went downhill in my brain after that.

Ashley’s on-and-off relationship with Aiden has been the source of almost endless pain for me since. Usually when they pick up again, I have the biggest flushes of sheer anger and panic and then, when it carries on for a while, it dulls down to an ache that never leaves.

Ashley’s on-and-off dalliances with other boys cause similar pains in me. Somehow, though, Aiden is the worst. Maybe it’s because she keeps going back to him, because I suspect she actually has feelings for him. I hate the idea of her loving him. She can date him, but loving him is completely wrong.

It surprisingly took me a few months to realise that I actually had sexual feelings for Ashley. I knew I loved her, but it was the age of thirteen, when my teenage horniness actually blossomed, that I wanted more than just friendship.

In retrospect, dating Daniel was a terrible idea but, at fourteen, I’d grown sick of wanting something I couldn’t have. It was very wrong of me because, for two years, I used him, even though I tried my level best to love him, or at least like him in the way I was supposed to.

Nearly two years I dated him until I realised, utterly and completely, that I was living a lie. I still feel like I’m living a lie, not telling her. I can’t, though. I can’t risk everything I have with her for just that extra inch more. Which is why I’m lying here, awake, at 3am, and she’s gently making sleep noises next to me.

Sometimes, she snores. It’s a very ladylike snore, a gentle one. Tonight, she’s just cuddled down into the pillow and making the most adorable noises. Sometimes when she’s like this, I take a chance and brush a tendril of hair off her face. I can’t help but be tender with her: she’s my Ashley. Should she ever wake up, I hope she’ll just attribute it to the closeness of our friendship.

I snuggle down next to her, allowing myself to be as close as possible without waking her up. I can smell her perfume from here, see the beauty on her face and the wonders of, well, Ashley. She moves slightly and her knee moves over to touch my leg. Her skin, bare, is against mine and it makes my pulse take a few steps forward.

It only takes about five minutes and I can’t actually take it any more. Sometimes, my whole life feels like exquisite torture. I don’t know why I can’t either make myself admit it to her or make myself get over her. I don’t know why I don’t.

This time, I turn over.

Turning away from her brings temporary relief.

That is, it does until her body moves over and cuddles into mine. A hand snakes around my waist and a small puff of air escapes my mouth. It would have been a gasp but I managed to pull back from that at the last split second. She mumbles and nuzzles into my shoulder. This has happened before. We sleep together fairly often but this spooning is a rare occurance. Usually, I enjoy it but, this time, I can’t help but wonder where it comes from. My mind brings up the possibility that it’s because she sleeps with Aiden like this and I feel physically ill.

I’m not an Aiden substitute; I’m Spencer.

The way that I’m stuck in the bed, I have no choice but to either put up with the cuddling or fall out of bed. It’s 3am and she’d notice me falling out of bed. That would be awkward so I just put up with the hugs. It is, of course, a double-edged sword. There is the wonder of spooning with Ashley and that same, sick knowledge that she isn’t thinking of me.

I close my eyes and focus on the warm hand that is cupping my abdomen. It’s on the outside of my clothes but my over-active imagination immediately moves it inside to my skin, stroking. In my mind, it’s making its way up across my breasts and I can feel my nipples harden. Down it sweeps, beneath the waistband of my cotton pyjamas and my underwear.

That thought makes me wet.

How the hell did I get so sex obsessed? I move, unable to cope with these feelings and that jolts Ashley out of her deep sleep.

“Stop wriggling, Spencer,” she murmurs in my ear. “Sleep time.”

Then, the double-edged sword flips. She turns over and cuddles the other way, well away from any contact. I miss her instantly.

But she knew it was me. She said my name. And that’s worth more than I ever thought it would be.

* * * * *

Next up: Chapter 4 [U]

16 Comments

  1. Posted 30 November 2009 at 5.48pm | Permalink

    haha this didn’t really help..

    I’m totally spencer right now.. in love with the one you can’t have.. wile she is with someone else..

  2. BG
    Posted 30 November 2009 at 6.12pm | Permalink

    Pfft – who wouldn’t have an overactive imagination with Ashley’s hand cupping their abdomen!

    I am really enjoying this one Clom. I love looking inside Spencer’s thoughts and living the Spashley relationship through her eyes.

  3. kpd
    Posted 1 December 2009 at 2.32am | Permalink

    That was a lovely update Clom. I’m really liking this story. I have been in Spencer’s situation before. Having strong feelings of more than a friendship for someone you know you can’t have is not a very good feeling. That is why I relate to your Spencer so much right now.

  4. Fishtosea
    Posted 1 December 2009 at 5.21am | Permalink

    Well, this was fasanating. But…..get to the point! The big ka-boom in the story! Ya know! Like…..important stuff. Like the part where Ashley is going to break up Aiden and Aiden going to try to get Ashley back…probably. Night night!

  5. Fishtosea
    Posted 1 December 2009 at 5.22am | Permalink

    I’m still in love with it as much my chloe though……

  6. nodame08
    Posted 1 December 2009 at 8.02am | Permalink

    its been a while since i commented, but i wanted to tell you i really enjoy this fic. ^.^

  7. pseudonym
    Posted 1 December 2009 at 5.55pm | Permalink

    I almost cried while reading this because I’m in Spencer’s situation right now. I don’t know how to quote things from the story but I’m really glad that you mentioned something about Spencer being angry when Ashley touched Aiden. I get those feelings all the time but I’ve always thought that I was a crazy bitch for feeling that way. Thank you for everything.

  8. bookthief
    Posted 2 December 2009 at 3.44am | Permalink

    I think I’m in love with this story…and the snowmen lining the page.

  9. this_years_luv
    Posted 2 December 2009 at 7.51am | Permalink

    Hey Buggy! Just wanted to let you know I was keeping up with your updates. Really enjoying this story so far! Miss you.

  10. Noodles
    Posted 3 December 2009 at 12.35am | Permalink

    Yay! Another story!

    Falling in love with your bff…feels like home. Seems everyone has, or knows someone who has, or know someone who knows someone who has, or know someone…I’m sure you get it.

    One request. Please no tickle fights. I dunno how many tickle fights I’ve started and nothing ever happens. Ever! I’m beginning to think its fanfiction lore. *sigh*.

    …Yay!

  11. missa92mm
    Posted 3 December 2009 at 3.20am | Permalink

    Yup Spencer I feel your pain. I’m in the exact same situation. It sucks.

    Great post as always, update soon :)

  12. nautic187
    Posted 5 December 2009 at 5.03am | Permalink

    Wow, the last chapter was kind of cute but this one went straight for the heart, or jugular or something equally bloody. The double-edged sword isn’t just for the situation in the bed, it’s for her whole relationship with Ashley and it’s been happening for so long now.

    Out of everything you bring with your writing Clom what I love the most is how adroitly you’re able to write emotion. I could read Precious Things 100 times and I’d still feel kind of sick to my stomach for a Spencer who is so in love with a girl who has never even really shown her the time of day that it physically hurts her and if this isn’t quite that extreme it’s still there and you make it so easy to feel that despair. She’s trapped in what seems like an impossible situation and there really isn’t a good way out of it.

    Or more accurately, there’s no risk-free way out of it, but sometimes you have to put your heart on the line and see what happens. A coward dies a thousand deaths, the brave but one and all that. Obviously from our perspective on the outside of this story looking in we see it moving in a more Spashley-centric direction and can call out encouraging advice but real life is a lot more scary than that so I love that you’re not just jumping into things being solved. I do think we’re probably getting close to the point where Spencer might snap or dig down and find the courage to admit what she feels for Ashley and I know that when you write it it’s going to be poignant and heartfelt and make me kind of sick to read it but ultimately I’ll love it and be amazed that yet again you’re able to take these two characters and make us feel something so real for them.

    So basically, yes, you’re awesome Clom, and you don’t really need me telling you that all the time but I hope you don’t get tired of it because it’s probably not going to stop any time soon. Or at least as long as you keep writing. Speaking of which…

  13. Posted 12 December 2009 at 2.54pm | Permalink

    I really like this story, would like longer updates though, hahah. So glad its back to being updated though. ON to the next chapter.

  14. yeahbutno
    Posted 17 December 2009 at 12.07am | Permalink

    awwww poor Spence *hugs her*

    ummmm realises what I just read *does arms length hug*

    go have a shower love! a cold one!

  15. tee452
    Posted 4 January 2010 at 1.19am | Permalink

    I’m playing catch up tonight.

    This chapter made me feel so sorry for Spencer. The first two chapters were angsty, yeah, but something about this one just pushed a little further. Probably because I identify with her a bit.

    I thought the last part—about sleeping with Ashley being a double-edged sword—was put together brilliantly.

    Thanks Clom.

  16. Lorinda
    Posted 10 May 2012 at 2.18pm | Permalink

    [link removed]

    This is the way I picture spencer and ashley.

    * * * * *

    A Dev writes: The link violated our terms of posting (no long links over 36 characters) and pointed to a protected Facebook page. Feel free to post it again if you use a link shortener and link to a public image.

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