It had been two weeks, Christmas
Break had started yesterday, it was a Sunday, and Asher wasn't
going to lie, he felt slightly guilty for antagonizing Rebecca
when he knew he shouldn't have.
He had a knack for starting drama
when there shouldn't have been drama in the first place. He never
learned, it was just too entertaining.
Nick had invited him to stay after
church, to hang with him, and since he trusted Nick's judgment,
he didn't think he'd get yelled at for attending. He'd been going
to youth for this long; he didn't think they'd kick him out
Unfortunately, Nick was also in the
band he was rallying Asher to join so desperately. Really, Nick
just wanted a male on stage with him, because the boy got very
nervous around Gabrielle. Asher was shy, he knew that, but at
least he knew how to talk to a girl he liked without getting
nervous. After Nicholas being friends with so many girls one
would think he had confidence, but frankly, around Gabrielle, he
Asher ended up texting Hailey, who
never usually bothered to text back. She was more concerned with
flirting with a senior she had just met.
He liked thinking to himself
anyways, and the fresh air would do him good, help him take his
mind off of things. It had been a month since his last high, and
ever since trying to enjoy this church thing, he hadn't exactly
had any sort of urge to get high. He even denied getting high on
a Friday night, just so he could be sober at church. When he
smoked to upset his mom it was rebellion, when it was against
Rebecca or Nick, and all they stood for, for some reason, he felt
He had checked a majority of the
female population at this church out, but he had yet to meet most
of them. Samantha was cute, slightly aggressive, and easily
bored. From what he could tell she was entertaining and high
maintenance. He barely wanted to deal with friendship with a girl
like that. But he was stuck with her; he'd bear her if he had
Lorraine was quiet, when she wanted
to, but around certain people she was loud and crazy. She was
Rebecca's best friend, and the two were glued at the hip. She
didn't look like she wore an ounce of make up on her face, yet
she was also one of the prettiest girls there. From what it
looked like though, she was friendly, but she barely
In the midst of his thoughts Rebecca
huffed all her way to the front step of the church, frustrated,
and looking towards the empty street in front of
He had two options: walk away and
dash all hopes of friendship, or try talking and hope she didn't
lash out at him. Either way would cost him.
"So are you going to shut me out
too, then?" He muttered, and her large eyes looked to him,
surprised, she jumped an inch into the air too, she must not have
noticed him beforehand.
"You don't even know me," She spat,
"so don't even try." The insult didn't hurt at all, and he
doubted she actually meant to hurt him.
He chuckled, "And here, I heard you
were friendly…loved by all." Her emotion fell, and her frown was
even deeper, and he apparently had hit a sensitive issue for her.
He'd have to remember that.
"Just shut up Asher." She snapped,
clearly frustrated that he was being either honest or sarcastic,
or both, with her.
"Weren't you just yelling at me
about shutting people out…here I am…trying to be your friend."
Rebecca's eyes grew wide, and he just smiled in the ever so suave
way that only he could when he tried to be friends with somebody,
which he knew was a rare occurrence.
"What's your problem?" She
questioned, genuinely hurt, but he felt no urge to comfort
"I can't just be complicated and
mysterious?" His charm was working, and he smiled as a smile
erupted on her face, he'd keep going on as long as he could. He
shrugged, "I hear what people say about me…might as well use
"I don't get you," He shrugged, and
he doubted she ever would, for he was like Lorraine, a completely
different person once you got to know him, or when he decided to
be friendly. Most people would describe him as complicated, when
really, he wasn't.
"Do you need to?"
"You're so bipolar." She teased,
pushing his leg, the closest thing to her and he immediately
rubbed his leg in the spot she pushed him, the small action
bringing a smile to his face, as she had already forgiven him for
whatever she was mad at him at.
"I prefer to call it being real." He
pushed her back, breaching his physical boundary. He wasn't a
physical person, he acknowledged it.
Rebecca poked at her shoe, keeping
eye contact with him as he sat down next to her. She bit her lip,
"Why is Levi so mad at you?"
Asher sighed, looking forward, to
the street in front of him, trying to forget, himself. He'd never
forgive him for the way he acted that night. It may have been the
truth, but he had no regard for his brother's well being. He
looked at the street for a while, staring into space before he
finally spoke, "I told him things he didn't want to hear, I think
he's more scared than mad."
"Oh," The answer made her look
disappointed, but he was, in no way, ever going to tell her the
truth about that night, she'd never understand everything that
"Yeah…Levi's a lot like me…he tries
to be like me." Rebecca nodded, listening as he continued, but
her face fell, as if she realized, maybe she didn't know Levi all
that well. He doubted she would, as she had only known the
"Christian" side of him and not the stoner side, "I just don't
want him making the same mistakes I did."
He looked forward, thinking,
distracting himself by looking away from anything besides
Rebecca. The way she asked things, he didn't doubt he'd tell her
his life story if she asked. Oddly, it wasn't even part of the
attraction. Her personality just drew him to want to trust
"He has to know he has a whole
family to support him, people that care about him." She sighed,
and he nodded, he knew it was true.
Asher breathed a deep breath,
looking into Rebecca's eyes, thankful that he felt nothing, "He
"You know Ash…" Rebecca sighed
nervously, "If you ever let us in, we'd be there to support you
Asher's gave her a skeptical glance,
the people in this church would never truly care about him; they
just didn't care about some stoner.
"And if not…there's always Nick and
I." The thought made him feel a little bitter, although they were
his only friends at this church.
His chest rose again, and he caught
her staring at him, staring at what looked like his arms or his
chest, and without thinking, he puffed out his chest slightly.
Harmless flirting was always fun.
"Thanks Becca." He forced a smile,
and then opened his mouth, only to close it again. He rubbed his
arm with his hand before continuing, trying to think of something
to talk about. She was one of the few people here he genuinely
wanted to know, "So are you ever going to tell me the secrets of
She gave him a quizzical glance, as
if the question was that complicated, "Secrets?"
He chuckled, realizing that he'd
have to explain things to her, and this wouldn't be the last
time, "Who likes who…who hates who…all that."
"Oh," Rebecca nodded in a sort of
way that suggested she was nervous, unsure of herself, and he
only watched with curiosity as her face contorted with every
thinking process, "I guess I could tell you." She sighed, "But
you have to promise that you won't tell."
He chuckled, smiling at her
carefree, naïve attitude that was so refreshing. Everyone else he
knew was trying to be tough, mature, and experience life. And
here Rebecca was enjoying it, not hiding anything, being herself,
"I feel like I'm in kindergarten again…keeping
"Yeah," She brushed a hand through
her chocolate brown hair, and he looked forward, waiting for her
to speak, "Well…what has Nick told you?"
"Nick?" His voice lifted in octave
in clear enjoyment, "The first thing he told me was that he liked
Gabrielle, that brunette who plays guitar." He brushed through
his hair, for no particular reason other than it would occupy
him, "Samantha gets hit on by every guy in this church, and
"Me?" She looked absolutely nervous,
"what about me?"
"You…try too hard, care to much what
people think of you." He wanted to comment about William, the guy
she had supposed feelings for, but he didn't want to start
anymore new drama, but even if Rebecca was this naïve girl, she
always looked nervous and unsure in front of everybody. She just
needed to relax.
"Oh," She sighed, her face falling,
and she just scratched at her arm for a while before finally
speaking, "Why are you talking to me?"
He cleared his throat, honestly not
sure. He had no true desire to speak to Samantha or Lorraine
because they didn't prove to him anything special, but Rebecca
tried to befriend him, she was complicated, she held up this wall
that everything was perfect and everyone was good, when inside,
he knew she must have been conscious of everything. She had a
sort of shyness about her. She wanted to know your secrets, make
you feel better, but no one ever cared about her.
"Because you tried…" He mumbled,
finally, not exactly willing to tell her much else.
She sighed, and Asher was sure that
both of them could feel that awkwardness that always came with
new friendships. "What?" She questioned, a bitter sarcasm rolling
off her tongue, "Am I one of the few people here that you
He let out a soft chuckle, turning
to look at her, humored, as she suddenly turned cold, for
whatever reason. He was curious, but still, he wasn't in the mood
for her emotions. He wasn't going to deal with it.
"I don't trust you Rebecca," he
attempted to shrug it off with a chuckle, but before Rebecca
could argue back, he was quick to respond, "at least not yet.
There are very few people I trust."
"Who do you trust?" She questioned
curiously, looking to the clock on her phone, which seemed to be
distracting her from him. She turned to him, their eyes locking,
and he felt exposed as her hazel brown eyes bore into his, as if
she was staring beyond his eyes.
"Well," he scratched the back of his
head, thinking, trying to ignore the knot he was developing. He
didn't trust many people, "I trust my mom."
He sighed, trying not to show
Rebecca that her question had hurt him in any way. He wished
sometimes, he could trust easily, but he couldn't, nobody
legitimately cared about him, "However stupid he is…I trust my
best friend Silas." He didn't expect Rebecca to know Silas well
at all, and though he was a stoner, he was one of the best
friends Asher had ever had, staying with him even with "rehab",
"I trust Levi…and I just might trust Nick."
He knew he couldn't trust people,
but it wasn't his fault, it wasn't his fault that people hated
him for whatever reason. Maybe that's why he liked to talk to
Rebecca, because she focused all of her attention on him and not
herself, she actually tried to get to know him, unlike what most
people before hand had done. They would say high, speak
occasionally, but never had they tried to go beyond that. She
asked questions no one else ever dared to ask.
She started to look around
nervously, as if someone would catch them together. He could
understand, he supposed, he was a guy that wasn't exactly
Christian, and she was a pretty, and single, Christian girl; they
hadn't exactly been friends for very long either. He could hear
the gossip already.
"Are we good then?" He questioned
curiously, meeting eyes with her again, and his breath hitched,
as she glanced at him with curiosity, an intention in her eyes.
It was making him nervous.
He held out his hand, preparing full
well to shake it in the comical way only he knew how, "Shaking
hands? Are you serious?"
He let out a chuckle too, not quite
sure why he was making them shake hands, other than the fact it
was different than regular methods, "I'm old
"Okay then…Ash. We're good." She
gave him a solid grip, and he couldn't help but smile at the fact
that he had gained another friend here.
He let out another chuckle, doing
his best to annoy her now that they were 'friends', "Does that
mean I can call you Becks?"
She let go of his hand, walking away
as quickly as she could, but stopped at her final turn, "You ever
call me Becks," she raised a serious yet playful eyebrow, "And
whatever friendship we have…" her hand moved to her neck, as she
drew an imaginary line across her neck, and Asher chuckled
understanding the message clearly. The friendship would be dead,
if he ever called her Becks. But still, he was unique, and if all
the males called her Becks, he wouldn't, Becca suited her well
Maybe he'd always be attracted to
her, but she was a sweet girl, and even if he couldn't see
himself falling for her romantically, he definitely didn't want
to let her go, because she actually gave him hope for this place.
Maybe there were people who cared about the well being of others,
without any expectation of return. If the world was a little bit
more like her, maybe he wouldn't hate church so
A/N: Yay! Now they're sort
of friends! And from here the fun starts, I promise. And
character pics are now up for you to check out:www.booksie.com/young_adult/miscellaneous/sarabethany/ashes-character-pics
. Please comment (on here if you would like to be updated)and
tell me if you like their pictures too. Feel free to disagree,
but thats how I pictured them.