Yes, terrible things happen, but sometimes those terrible things-- They save you.

-- Chuck Palahniuk

Friday, May 31, 2013

39- Blurry

[A quick Author's note before you read.

 This chapter is quite a bit longer than usual. The reasoning for this is that this entire chapter was roleplayed with 7 very talented writers. 

I really wanted to take a moment and say thank you to all of them for being a part of this. It is quite a bit different writing form wise because I had to take it from first person and turn it into third. But I hope I do not disappoint.

Once again, all of you:
Abi, Aperille, Aoi, Willow, Natalie and Lilac.

And lastly, Carter. The last scene wouldn't have been the same without you. It came out better than I possibly could have hoped for. You're amazing. <3

 THANK YOU. You guys are phenomenal and I appreciate this more than you could ever know.

 <3 ]

 A game of chess, Aria would be the black queen and Carter could be the white king, I guess. I had no reasoning behind the others. I wanted to see who beat the timer and got a checkmate. Even if our game had no winner, their's sure as hell would.

--Aoi Yushi

Babies First:
Madeline, Kristina, Dante

April, Rhiannon, Wilson

"Can we not have this conversation?" Aria snapped, staring out of the window. 

"You might as well just answer the question Aria, pent up aggression is just going to eat at you."

She whipped her head around and glared at Lilac.

"Stop shrinking me. You're here to party. Not to act like a therapist."

Lilac help up her hands in surrender and went back to her iPod that started blasting loudly out of her headphones once more. Willow, who was seated in the back seat next to her grimaced and popped one of them out, pointing at the device.

"Super hearing remember? That sounds like cats wailing."

"Can we just get there already?" Aria rolled her eyes.

 She had had a set of donor babies right before their trip to Bridgeport for this party.

Babies 86 and 87, Macayla and Owen.

She had been nothing but busy, and this was supposed to be her night to get away.

Only.. Carter was going to be there. Lovely.


Aperille was more than a little excited to be holding another party with her friends. She scurried around her house hiding anything that could get broken easily.

"Hun what are you doing?" 

Rich asked as she was putting a vase under sink. 

"What? Your mother gave it to us" 

"You hate it, wouldn't this be a perfect time to have someone break it?" 

Aperille looked at Rich and  placed the vase on the bar right next to the tequila shots. 

"So Aria, are you excited to see your favorite babysitter tonight?" 

She asked, tilting her first shot back.

Aria scowled at Aperille's comment, approaching the bar. 

Her babysitter, what fun that would be... She  kind of hoped he just wouldn't show up, but her luck wasn't good enough for that.

"I really hope that was a joke. I don't even want to be in his vicinity.. Let alone at a party within ten feet of him."

Aria took a shot, the taste close to that of what she imagined battery acid to be.

Aria pretended not to notice the all-knowing look Aperille shot in her direction as she set up the next round of shots and headed to answer the door.

"Me thinks thou protest too much." 

That comment just made Aria's frown more pronounced. 

Protest too much my ass. I would protest as much as I pleased when it came to him.

Aoi Yushi, a new girl that Aria had met and really liked, took her shot as Abigail Silver walked in the door. 

Aria tilted another shot back, watching as Abigail gave Aperille a hug. She was clearly distressed about something. It was written all over her face. It was etched in her gray eyes.

Everyone had their demons tonight.

"I brought Vodka, and I would prefer not to have any left by the end of the night"

Abigail said, the sadness touching on her voice as well.

Aria shrank into the corner and waited for everyone to arrive. A fight with Carter was likely, and not what she needed. The fact that he was coming at all made her antsy.

When he finally walked in the door, followed by a pretty girl Aria didn't know, whom Aperille referred to as 'Nat', his eyes fell on her and swept away quickly.

Aria wondered how many ways he was criticizing her in his mind.

Carter looked like he would much rather be anywhere but here.. But he still came.

Aria wondered why. He hated parties. He hated her. Why would he even do this?

"Sorry I'm late."

His words stretch across the room and into Aria's ears. The sound of his voice made her heart skip. She should probably kill that before it becomes an issue. Carter was nothing more than an insolent jerk and she needed to accept that.

He passed Aperille and the rest of the guests without a second glance at Aria and settled into a chair in the corner with a beer. 

She was surprised he was drinking at all.

Aoi's adorable voice, lightly touched with a Japanese accent floated on the air as she joked with Rich about some low budget horror film called 'Nail Gun Massacre."

It seemed like everything was going pretty smoothly aside from the tension that settled like a cloud between Carter and Aria.

 Aria could feel the storm coming already.

Everyone who had not already been in the living room followed Aperille and settled into various seats. Aria sat as far away from Carter as she possibly could. The resentment almost tangible. 

Rich poured everyone a shot of Patron and passed them out, Carter being the only one who denied it.

"To friends." Aperille announced, throwing hers back happily. 

The rest of the party guests took them in various stages of unease and Aperille laughed a little.

She settled onto the couch next to rich, her smile wide.

"Now who is ready for a spirited game of I never? Aria you remember how to play right?" Aperille asked with feigned innocence, looking straight at her.

Aria's stomach tilted. She kept her face blank, locking her pink eyes on Aperille's brown ones.

She was probably the most flawed person in attendance and this could not be the best idea especially if Carter was going to be here.. So close and yet so far away. 

She honestly thought about lying.. But what would be the point. It wasn't like she needed to impress him.

Every damn person in the room looked nervous. Apart from Carter, who had that vague look of annoyance etched on his features.

Aoi was the only one who piped up, asking the question that was probably on a few people's minds.

"I've never heard of this game, how do you play?"

Aperille smiled.

"The rules are simple if you have done the I never that the person mentions you take a shot and maybe give us the story about when you did it!"

She looked at Rich.

" Hun you go first." 

He looked grim. Something told Aria he either really didn't think this was a good idea, or he really didn't want to play.

"Alright," he said, his voice dripping with malcontent. "Never have I ever had a threesome."

Aria glanced over in Carter's direction, embarrassment immediately burning her cheeks.

She reached over and downed the shot, praying Carter wasn't watching her.

A few others drink to this one too. Abigail was one of them.

"My best friend and I got totally wasted just a few weeks ago with another one of our friends and needless to say the three of us did the deed."

She explains, her cheeks burning crimson.

"All I remember was Making out with the other female of the party, I can't remember anything else that happened but the pictures were enough proof to give me a slight outline."

"Never have I ever," Carter's words startled Aria and she jumped slightly. She hadn't expected him to join. 

The silence hangs heavy for just a moment and then:

"Never have I ever been a part of an affair."

He locked eyes with her, his completely cold as she tipped the shot. 
Lilac stumbled in, catching onto the back of the chair, clearly already drunk. She grabbed a shot from in front of Carter and downed it.

"Oh, I like this game."  

She winked at him and he rolled his eyes. 

The front door opened and Willow nudged it with her hip.

"I'm back guys!" 

She sang, walking over and sitting on the arm of Carter's chair.

Aria mentally glowered. She knew that feeling.. She was jealous. 


Aperille cut the attention away from Aria for a moment with her story of how her and Rich had met. Aria silently thanked her until her next I Never left her lips.

"Never have I ever lied about who I love." 

She was staring directly at Carter.

The question shot straight through Aria's stomach and she stared at him with wide eyes.

She thinks he loves me?

The shot she took for the question was barely tasted with how quick she did it.

Her eyes fall back onto Carter just fast enough to see him lean across the coffee table and take a shot.

There was a familiar feeling that pulled in Aria's chest and she forced herself to look away  as he sat the glass cylinder back on the wood.

Aoi's small voice came from her seat. She had been watching with bemused and curious eyes the entire time, finally coming forward with her own 'I Never'

"Never have I ever had sex in a car."

Aria took the shot, memories of Quill and another of her stupid transgressions plaguing her mind.

Aperille stood, gesturing to Abigail. 

"Abby could you help me in the kitchen?" She staggered a bit as she asked, and Abigail stood, following close behind. Her death glare given to Carter was more than obvious. 

The pretty girl, whose full name was Natalie, stood and followed the two of them, Clearly wanting to get away from the pressure that was choking the room.

Aria spat the next words with more conviction than she thought she held.

"Never have I ever pretended to care about someone more than I actually did.."

His eyes never left hers for a moment as he leaned backwards, crossing his arms over his chest.

"I have never pretended to care more for you than I did."

The astriction that covered everything in it's surroundings seemed to be drowning the guests one by one, as Aoi stood and joined the other girls in the kitchen.

It was like it didn't even affect Carter and Aria, still locked in an impossible game of cat and mouse. 

Willow's I never startled both of them. They had been so busy staring each other down it was if they forgot she was still sitting there.

"Never have I ever ignored my feelings for someone," 

Aria stared daggers at Willow, tipping the shot back. She put the glass back down on the table with a lot more force than she intended to, and the sound seemed much louder than it should.

Her words tumbled out before she could completely think them through and she could feel the tears that she had managed to keep hidden all night burn her irises.

"Never have I ever manipulated my best friend into feeling safe with me so I could just rip it all away."

There is no fucking way I am going to let this asshole see me cry.

Aria got to her feet, dizzily. She apologetically made her way past the guests left in the room, which was really only Rich and Willow, and pushed the heavy door open, stumbling into the night air.

What the hell was wrong with me tonight.. Why did I even agree to come? I knew he was going to be here.. Was I that big of an idiot?

Aria heard footsteps behind her and she groaned, turning way too fast. The alcohol in her system made her hazy and she tipped a little to the side.


His voice did two things simultaneously.. It drove that same knife straight through her chest that him being around always did and it made the spark of anger she kept hidden so well, explode.

"What Carter?! What do you fucking want from me? Do you want me to fucking beg you to be a decent person? To not act like a condescending prick? Do you think that it matters what words come out of my mouth?! That ANYTHING about you would change??"

She kicked a rock aside and balled her hands into fists.

"You're never going to be any different. I don't know why I keep trying. I don't know why I give you so much effort when all you do is push me aside."

She could feel the tears slide down her face, but she was far too angry to care.

"I fucking gave you everything when we were kids. I would have done anything to make you happy. And you know what you did?? You ignored me. And then you left me behind without a single fucking word."

Her voice broke and she crossed her arms over her chest, defensive.

"You're not even worth it anymore. This isn't worth it. I just want you to fucking leave me alone."

Aria deflated with the last statement, her anger dissipating and the alcohol finally going to her head and silencing her.

She was done. Done with all of it. Done with him.

Carter watched her, silent. His calm exterior was infuriating, but Aria was so drained it wasn't worth it to care.

He took every accusation she threw and crossed his arms over his chest.

"So I have morals and don't like the way you're living. Fact. So I left long ago, and that was a mistake. Fact. But I didn't ever not care. And I'm not the only one who walks away, Aria."

A growl rumbled in the back of his throat as he spat the words.

"But you're right about one thing. It's not worth it anymore."

He shook his head and walked back to the house, getting his keys.

Aria stared at him as he exited, her knees threatening to give way.

"You're going home with me."

He backtracked.

"I'm taking you home."

Aria wanted to tell him no. She wanted to scream and say she didn't want anything to do with him. 

But she was too emotionally leveled out and depleted to fight him.


It was barely more than a whisper.

Carter's face was still noticeabley flushed as he stepped over something on the ground that Aria couldn't see and walked out the door, her stumbling behind him. Aria bumped clumsily against the railing and let out a soft, drunken sigh. She didn't even realize she was as drunk as she was. Her vision spun and the world was almost upside down at times.

She watched him approach the stupid enviornment destroying Hummer, with its ridiculously large frame cutting into the road. The night was quiet and it seemed so out of place that it had been filled with gaudy music and drunken cheers and angry fights the past few hours.

He glanced back at her, but her eyes avoided him entirely. A vein pulsed just under her skin, but Aria can't quite decide if it's there because she was angry, or intoxicated.

The air hung heavy and silent as Carter bypassed the door, letting Aria climb inside by herself. 

Weird.. He usually insisted on being the one to help her inside.

The car started with an insanely loud roar and as soon as his back hit the seat, he turned the stereo on.

Aria sat there, fuming. The silence between the two of them almost echoed it was so loud.

Aria's drunken mind was not really sure why she had agreed to leave with him in the first place. He was apparently still really good at talking her into things. Just like when they were kids. That fight was probably the worst fight they had ever had and she still allowed him to take her back to Riverview..

"You know what I don't understand?" He asked after they had gotten onto the highway.

 "I don't understand why it's such a big deal for you to let me drive you home. It's not like we weren't friends at one point..."

Aria hid her surprise at his question and bustled forward with a catty response.

"I'm riding with you aren't I? Besides, we're still friends. At least I was under the impression that we were."

She  looked back out the window at the rain that had started to fall, increasing in weight every few minutes.

"Do you even think anything through before you say it? How can you expect things to be the same after the stuff you say and the way you act? It's like you feel justified hurting me.."

Carter squinted at the road, staring intently at the dotted yellow lines. Clouds had rolled in and rain started to thump down on the wind shield. He clicked on the wipers, gritting his teeth in tune to the swish swish swish.

His fingernails dug into the leather steering wheel and Aria winced, almost as if she could feel it.

"Look at yourself, Aria."

He reached over and pulled down the car's passenger shade, exposing the mirror on the other end.

"Look at yourself."

Aria flinched at his sudden movement, Not that she  thought he was going to hit her or anything near it, He wasn't his dad.. But the action startled her, nonetheless.

She scowled at his instructions, Not entirely sure what his point was. The mirror was shaded in the car, the light outside fading into nothing at this point, but what she could see was enough and it made her recoil.

She looked terrible. Her face was flushed from alcohol. She couldn't even remember how much she had drank. Something told her that she didn't want to know. The few tears that had escaped when she was screaming at him had done major damage to her makeup and she looked like hell.

She could feel those same angry tears just under the surface again as she slammed the shade shut and bit her lip. 

"Yeah, I hate what I see. Is that you wanted to hear? Because I do.. Of course I do. How could I not?"

She choked on the last couple of words and trained her eyes on the dashboard.

His arrogance was insulting.

Or maybe it wasn't arrogance.. But whatever it was that was hiding behind the callous exterior he seemed so happy to embrace, it hurt her more than she could say.

His lips pressed into a thin line and his jawline hardened, a look Aria can't quite peg flashing through his bright green eyes.

"I just wish you saw yourself the way I see you..."

He muttered  the words quietly. They're hardly audible over the Maroon 5 song that beats from his stereo system.

"Because you have potential. And you just-"

He cut off, paying attention to the road as he hit a slick spot.

"You just don't get it."

Aria rolled her eyes, blowing air through her teeth.

"Oh yeah? And how the fuck do you see me? I think I have a pretty good idea from the things that you have said over the past couple of weeks."

Her tone was biting, more so than she intended for it to be.

"That's something you say a lot.That I don't get it. Except, you never fucking say what I don't get."

As fast as she looked at him, she looked away, alcohol rolling in her stomach. She had barely eaten and drank way more than her fair share.

She just wanted to be home. Away from him.

"Could you drive any slower? Fuck."

At her words, the speedometer drops by 5 MPH. Aria groaned. 

It was just like him to have to prove a point.

"You don't get that people need you."

"I get that people need me.."

She trailed off, his words from the roof scattering through her mind. That was the only time in their entire lives that he had told her he needed her. He didn't specify in what way, but it was enough to get him off of the roof and onto solid ground.

"And I miss how we used to be.. I miss the Aria that wasn't so.. Igno

Heat rushed to her cheeks at his comment.

"It can never be like it used to Carter.. Not when you hate everything that has to do with me now. I don't even think when all of this is over that it will ever be normal for us."

She pulled a strand of her hair into her fingers and tugged slightly.

"How can you ever expect to be anything other than what we are now. I can't change the past."

Carter's mind was full of unspoken anger and something else.. Hurt maybe?

He declined a response, reaching over and turning up the radio and they just drove.

The rain was terrible. Angry, as though it reflected their hearts and minds. Angry and loud and the clouds wept for them as the thunder and lightning danced in the sky, their waltz burning the air and setting fire to the world.

Carter didn't speak again until they pulled into her driveway.

"I don't mind our past," 

Aria's eyes flew open and she looked at him, the lightning breaking across the sky.

"I just want a future."

She curled her fingers around the door handle, ready to just go inside and get in her bed, buried in pillows and sleep until she had to face this shitty reality she called her life once again.

"If it was OUR specific past that was the issue, I don't think this conversation would be happening.. You could never let go of anything I have done, because if you could, you wouldn't be throwing my mistakes in my face with every chance you got."

She swallowed her sadness and rushed forward.

"As for a future.. I don't think that is in the cards either."

She tossed the idea around in her head. The possibility of actually continuing her  life with him in it was nearly unfathomable.. Since when would he even want to be with someone like her. He could have anyone..

"And you know what, Carter? Who says I would even want you around? After everything you have said to me, and everything you have done since this whole fucking challenge started, how do you know it's not too late?"

She could feel the frustration in her  chest, mixed with something else.. That stupid feeling that seemed to get stuck there whenever he was around. The one she could never quite seem to drown.

"Maybe, for once in my life, I am sick of the way you treat me."

She pulled the door handle and jumped down, landing in a puddle, just as, with her luck, it figured she would.

Carter didn't even blink as she slammed the door, the thunder outside coincided with the sound of the door shutting hard behind her. She had only taken two steps and the downpour had soaked her black hair. It clung to her bare arms and her skirt hugged her legs. 

Aria hesitated for just a moment. Just a moment as her head turned half back to him, but then her shoulders dropped, she ran a hand through her hair and she walked her driveway.

Carter tapped his fingers against the steering wheel, a permanent indent from his fingernails disrupting the smooth feel of the leather there.

Fuck it. Why should I care? Why do I currently care? Why does every part of me want to follow you right now? Why do I want to hold you and tell you to stay with me.
And you're right. I should care about what you've done. But when it boils down to it...

Well, I don't. I could overlook all of it if you could love me.

He had no idea how he could ever tell her that.. Except..

With a huff, he opened the door, his feet splashing into a puddle. He winced as the water soaked his socks, and he rounded the car.

"Aria," he called out after her as she took the first step up the stairs to her front door. 

"Aria, wait."

She turned around as she heard him say her name, wondering what the fuck he  could possibly want from her. She watched the rain trace down his face and blur into his eyes as he approached her, her  pulse setting up a rhythmic stutter.


He whispered her name, smiling. 

He was still taller, even though she was on the first step.

"Aria," He said once more, reaching his  hand to brush a clingy piece of her hair away.

The touch of his fingers on her face as he slid the hair away from her eyes sent tension through her body. He shouldn't be this close. When he was this close her thoughts cascaded into one another and she couldn't think straight. She couldn't formulate an appropriate response to anything he said. 

"How can I show you...."

But there was only one way, he decided. 

Only one way he could convey himself to her.

His hand cupped her face firmly but his thumb brushed against her cheek gently in contrast.

"Let me show you," 

He said.

 And then his lips took hers. 

Just like they should have before. And just like they did those many years ago.

Except this time, his kiss said what he had always wanted to say.

He prayed she got it this time.

Aria was pretty sure her entire world exploded in the moment his lips met hers.

Nothing else mattered. Nothing had ever come close to the way this made her feel. The electricity between them put the lightning above to shame.

She held his face in her hands and she could feel his pulse in her fingertips. She had been waiting what seemed like an eternity for him to touch her again.

She locked her arms around his neck and pressed closer, this.. She was not ready for this to end.

Something was telling her, when it did, things would be the same as they always were.

She was realizing slowly, She didn't want them to be..

She couldn't believe It had taken her this long to see what was right in front of her.

She was falling in love with her best friend.
<3 <3 <3

Kristina, Madeline, Dante

Rhiannon, April, Wilson

"Everyone is changing
there's no one left that's real
so make up your own ending
and let me know just how you feel
cause I am lost without you
I cannot live at all
my whole world surrounds you
I stumble then I crawl"


  1. I love Carter and Aria, they need a nickname like Caria, but that's not very good xD
    Amazing chapter, my new favourite, can't wait for the next one<3.

  2. hahah, Someone actually christened them as Caria a long time ago, so you got it right!

    And I am glad you like them, and the story in general <3

    The next one will be up very, very soon! <3

  3. hurietgiureatuirehpfjOJFIRGREUF