‹ Prequel: Zoned
Status: Part Two

Zoned: Waking Up

5 Years Later

"Okay we'll take a break then we'll do the last one." the intercom was loud. I sat on the counter and swung my legs back and forth as my feet hit the side of the counter. Dylan twirled in his stool. I looked out the giant window and watched as Matt walked to the exit.

"So you wanna get something to eat?" I asked Dylan.

"You always wanna eat." He smiled.

"Yes, but you do, too. So hush."

He smiled at me kept twirling. I sat and thought to myself about what he was talking about in the parking lot. I kept creating scenarios, over and over again, to a point where I giggled to myself and couldn't stop smiling. One scenario was him finishing his sentence:

"I really care about you, Rich. It kind of pains me not knowing your actual name, but I guess we'll find out when we get married!" Obviously he was making a joke, but there was some truth behind it. Those were always my favorite parts of talking to him. I loved hearing him make cute and flirtatious jokes and knowing that he was serious. He just didn't want me to know he was. I was never able to determine whether or not he was flirting, or if was just being nice, but after spending time with A-Rad and Jordon, and after seeing them flirt, I caught on to it. My scenario wandered to us having sex for the first time. It being slow and passionate, then fast and not so passionate. I got a little carried away with my thoughts and let out a small giggle. I snapped out of my comatose stage of daydreaming when Dylan cleared his throat and was looking at me.

"What's so funny?" He asked. I grinned and shook my head.

"Nothing, nothing at all."

He cornered his eyebrows and curled his lips inward, then he stood up and made a normal facial expression, "Fine, whatever. Don't tell me. I still want something to eat, though." He then smiled at me.

"Fine, but can I ask you something?"

"Yeah, anything."

"What were you gonna say in the parking lot? Jorel kind of interrupted us..." I said trying not to sound like I dwelled on the subject for long, even though I did.

"I don't remember." He was blunt. I wanted to slap him in the face and yell, "FOR GOD SAKE WHAT WERE YOU GOING TO SAY IT'S NOT THAT DAMN HARD!" but I simply nodded and said, "Okay." It was difficult for me. I wanted to know so badly. Although if I asked A-Rad, I knew she'd say he liked me. She was right; we do sound like 8th graders, I thought.

"Why?" He asked.

I shrugged and said, "I don't remember." He crossed his arms and tilted his head back a little bit.

"Are you sure?" He asked.

"I'm sure," I smirked. He smirked, too. I felt blood rush to my face as I began to smile uncontrollably.
Am I seriously blushing right now, I thought. He laughed. "What?" I said awkwardly.

"You're adorable."

I stopped blushing and sat on the counter shocked. Did he just say something sweet? He walked towards me and, before I could even think, we were kissing. His hand was just below my ear and he pulled my body closer to where I almost fell off the bar. It was like all of my insecurities and worries vanished. After a few moments of sparks, he pulled away. I felt myself smiling like a dumbass, so I bit my lip to try and stop. That made it worse. "I didn't expect that."

"I know. That's why I did it. It's kind of what I wanted to tell you in the lot, earlier, but Jorel came out. Plus, I wasn't sure how to put it in words."


"Aren't I?"

"Let me ask; why did you act all bitchy in the car today?"

"I was mad."

"Was that it? Why were you mad?"

"You did it in the bathroom with one of my best friends. It'd be like A-Rad and Jake doing it or something."

"Why is that? Does Jordon actually have a thing for her?" I got excited.

"Well I can't answer that, but you know he's not a huge relationship guy. Remember that shit marriage he was in? Ha sad how it ended."

"Well should I assume he does like her?"

"Can't answer that, either."

"You're no fun. Guys and their 'pacts'." I scooted back on the counter. Dylan was still standing in front of me with one hand on my knee and the other on the counter.

"You act like we never tell you girls anything!"

"Well not when it comes to liking each other! I swear, y'all are gay or something."

"And you say this because?"

"Two chicks are about to live with you. Fuck, we already kind of do. We hang out everyday, and none of you, for the past 5 years, have made a move on either of us. What gives?"

"You do realize what just happened, right? Like not even a minute ago?"

"Okay, well 5 years later, maybe, but you know what I'm talking about! I'm not trying to sound conceited or anything, but what the hell? We're decent, right?"

"Better than decent. And it's not like no one ever liked you."


He didn't answer. He just stood and stared at me. "Aren't we hungry?"

"Dylan, c'mon. Who was thirsty?" I joked.

"Well Danny, for one."

I knew that, I thought. Dylan didn't know about New Year's in 2010 or when Danny first joined the band. I remembered when Danny was standing alone, not dancing, just holding a drink. He was bobbing his head to the beat. I remembered how mad I got after seeing Dylan swap spit with some girl and I grabbed Danny and made out with him. New Year's Eve was awkward, and he and I agreed not to acknowledge it. At this point, he was in the band for about 11 months. The first month, he started making subtle hints that he was, as A-Rad would say, "tryna holla". I ignored the signs for multiple reasons: I didn't want to start any drama, I liked Dylan, and I had no idea he was even flirting. During the second month, he and I were in the old recording booth together. We were alone and he was sitting in Matt's chair at the editing booth. I was sitting on the shelf and Danny was playing some songs he needed to remember for American Tragedy. I would catch him looking over at me every now and then, but didn't think much of it. No one opposed the idea of us (A-Rad and me) spending time alone with him. They all kind of saw it as a time to "get to know" him. I never made it my "quest" to get to know him as well as I already knew the other guys, but I felt like it would help him if he felt comfortable with A and myself.
After sitting in the booth, listening to Jordon sloppily sing on the CD that he recorded for Danny to memorize, I got bored. I went and got a few drinks from the Cage, and Danny and I played a little drinking game.

"Okay, Daniel, what is your favorite color?" I started.

"I don't know. Green? Do we drink if we don't know or..?"

"Okay how about this: we drink when we have something in common?"

He smiled and said, "Okay that sounds good. I'll say my answer is green, then." He looked and wanted to see if I'd drink. I didn't. "Ha okay what do you do when you're bored?"

"Watch Netflix, doodle, listen to music, masturbate."

He smiled and took a drink. After an hour or so, after getting tipsy, things got more personal.

"Are you kinky? Or are you more of a 'romantic' kind of guy?" I asked.

"I'd say I'm more romantic." He waited for me to take a drink, but I didn't. We both started laughing, "Really! That is hilarious! Umm well, what are some your kinks?"

"Being called 'princess'. Domination in general."

He took a drink and we both laughed.

"Okay okay, here's a good one: have you ever liked anyone friends with, related to, or in the band?" I asked.

"Aha yeah. Yeah I have."

I took a drink.

"Woah, who?" he asked eagerly.

I was kidding, and wasn't about to tell a stranger I had a thing for one of his best friends, but I said, "Me, of course. Who wouldn't love me!" And laughed. But then he took a drink. I sat there awkwardly with my mouth open a little and chuckled a bit. It was quiet for a moment and then he spoke up, "So this was fun."

"Yeah. Yeah, it actually was. Maybe...maybe we should meet up with the guys?" I said. It was the most awkward moment of our friendship. We both agreed to not talk about it.


"Why do you ask?" Dylan asked.

"Oh just curious. You said someone else did, or.."

"Jorel liked you at one point, and actually, Scribs did, too. When you girls first met Jake and Tommy. He thought you were cute and had nice tits. Didn't blame him." He smiled. "I'm serious, though. I'm hungry." He backed up a little and lifted me off the counter. We walked out the door together and down the hall to the Cage. The entire time we walked, I thought about what Dylan said. Jorel liked me? What the fuck, I thought he was in love with Vanessa for like 5 years, I thought. When we went into the Cage, Jordon, Danny, and George were hanging out and watching TV. I didn't see A-Rad anywhere.

"Where's Fagshit and J-Dog?" Dylan asked.

"They went out to pick up some food." George said. Jordon was sitting on the far left side of the couch, not saying a word and staring at the floor. George sat on his right and watched whatever what was on. Danny was getting a beer out of the fridge.

"Um where's A-Rad?" I asked.

"She said something about a 'family emergency'. She left a minute ago, actually." Jordon said without looking at me.

"I'm gonna go see if my guy has anything. I'm wantin' to get baked, son!" George said in a weird way. He got up and walked out.
♠ ♠ ♠
Cage again