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Inspired by this Atlanta rain.

Waking up, his headache had subsided. The rain still rapped violently against his bedroom windows, as he awoke in the dimly lit apartment bedroom. He briefly glanced at the glowing clock that read 6:45pm, and wondered where the time had gone. He glanced at her, sleeping, through cloudy contacts lenses. She, in sleep had moved to the other pillow, eyes shut, head nestled with her arms folded under. He stared at her bare shoulders, and with his one unobstructed eye, watched her breathe, with thoughts of how buttercream soft, her supple flesh was in his grasp. He smiled as he wanted to touch her again.

He could hear the music still playing outside in the den, unsure of the song, but lay prone, not fully awake to go tend to it. Lifting his head, he noticed their still unfinished bottle of Starbucks Frappuccino, thinking they were drinking, earlier they had poured some of his father’s Kahlua into the bottle.

She stirred briefly, and turned to face him in her sleep. Her bright round face, framed by her dark hair, falling over her cheek, shined in the dim evening. He smiled at the sight of her furrowed nose, the structure of her angelic face, her full lips, he still tasted, and the thoughts of her sounds, her kiss, her moans. Satisfied, at least for now, he thought. But, looking at her sleep, he wanted more. He had tasted her, they released their angst together, and found something they had been looking for, if just for this moment.

Earlier, the two friends snacked on chips and fruit juices on campus, as he decided to leave as a sudden headache began to bother him. As if it were just the right moment, him, always in need of her, and her very needy this morning, he decided to go home, and she asked if he needed her to follow him. When she had tried this previously, it had not worked for them. The rain had begun by the time they arrived, cars following each other. As the soaked co-ed’s ran through the cool fall rain, his headache was masked by the euphoria brought on by her presence. She was intoxicating, he would learn later.

Snacking on olives in the refrigerator, and a shared spiked coffee beverage, a smile, led to a long overdue kiss, then subsequently led to two friends crossing a barrier they had put on each other, though the people in their worlds had picked up on it long ago.

She woke up, and smiled gazing at him. She giggled looking at her coat, and their clothing strewn around the room, and looked at his braids, that were fresh this morning, but unraveling from him sleeping without them covered, and…well, earlier. She scooted back toward him, and placed herself before him, wanting to lay on his chest again, but was wary of waking him, not knowing he had just been watching her through the same gazes and stares. Thoughts of him lifting her from sitting from the floor, and him carrying her to his room were still fresh in her mind, she hoped they echoed the same in his dreams for him. She wanted to wake him, but waited…still,

Cold, she pulled the comforter over her shoulders, admiring the richness of his brown skin. His nose, his lips, his apparent smile in sleep, she was not worried about tomorrow…not yet. He stirred and opened his eyes.

“Hi beautiful,” he mumbled as he instinctively kissed her. She moved with him, and moved closer, as she had wanted.

“Is your Dad coming,” she asked wary of surprises, but when he reassured her, he was out of town, their rainy afternoon of love making, transitioned to and evening and night.

The rain grew into an intense thunderstorm as it seemed to match them. Tomorrow was left for tomorrow, as these two friends complicated everything about their relationship…

Over, and over, and over again.

The manuscript Blue Lines is the fictional coming of age narrative of a young California woman Key Yemaya Walker, and her 2 year growing journey through school, love, and life period piece, written by Kenneth Suffern, Jr., taking place at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill between the years of 1997 – 1998. Loosely based on true events, and experiences during that time, told through the eyes and voice of the main female protagonist, a freshman first attending the school.