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kiss me under the light of a thousand stars

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The music dropped to a slower beat, the energy level of the Spring Fling much lower as guests took their leave from the premises. Janis stood to the side of the party, watching people leave. She was waiting to do the same, but Damian had excused himself, saying he had to take care of something. He disappeared before she could ask what he meant, leaving her awkwardly placed by herself. To distract herself, she reaches up to grab the crown on her head. Her head tingled remembering the feeling of Cady placing it on her head. Her lips tilted into a slight smile at the thought of the other girl. Ever since they forgave and made up earlier, there’s been a feeling like a massive weight had been lifted of Janis’s chest. Maybe it’s her guilt. Regardless, Janis can’t help the giddy bubble of happiness in her chest.

“Janis! There you are, I’ve been looking for you,” a voice exclaimed. Janis jumped slightly, spooked by the sudden appearance of the voice. She whipped around to face the source, only to meet the smiling face of Cady Heron. Her own smile grew larger at Cady’s presence, the bubble appearing on her face.

“Looking for me? Why?” Janis asked, realizing there had been a pause after Cady’s original statement where she was supposed to answer. She may have been distracted by staring at the jacket-clad girl, but she adjusted her posture to make everything seem more casual. Cady’s smile grew wider like its increased size would bolster her bravado, but she began to exude a nervous energy.

“I know that everyone’s kinda leaving, but I wanted to ask, uh…” She doesn’t finish her statement, choosing to wring her hands and look at anything but Janis. Confusion dawned upon Janis, unsure as to what Cady wanted from her.

“You okay, Caddy?” Panic began to build within Janis, a million different reasons why Cady could be nervous running through her head. “Is something wron-”

“Dance with me,” Cady blurted out. Janis can feel a mental record scratch happen, halting her thoughts.

“Huh?” A rather intelligent answer, but it’s the best her mind can give. Cady blushed, flustered and embarrassed at her response. Her smile became crooked, it’s awkwardness much more palatable.

“J-just forget I said anything, okay? I have, I gotta get home, y’know? It’s late,” she stammered out, laughing at the end. She pulled away, moving to get as far as possible from her blunder. Janis watched her leave before her body jerked forward after Cady.

“Wait!” Janis called out, her body rushing forward to grab Cady’s wrist before she was too far. Janis felt her face grow warm, her mind catching up with what she had just done. Bewilderment colored Cady’s face.

“Janis, wha-” Janis grabbed Cady’s other wrist, freaking out over how close she was to the mathlete. She almost choked on her next sentence, but a burst of confidence forced it out.

“Yes! I’ll...I want to dance with you,” she proclaimed. Her anxiety festered uncomfortably within her chest over the lack of response following her words. Cady seemed to be dumbfounded, or shocked, but her face changes from confusion to pure unadulterated joy. She dragged Janis over to the almost vacant dance floor, the soft croon of a slow song in the air.

Together, they settled into a simple box step dance, occasionally stumbling or going off beat. Janis chalked up to nerves. She wondered if Cady can feel her heartbeat, her pulse pounding in her ears from being basically chest to chest with her. It jumped even faster when Cady wrapped her arms around her neck, bringing her into an area of shared breathing space. As they go through the motions, Janis’s heart rate slowed, lulled by the gentle swaying. She stared into Cady’s eyes, glazed over with an emotion she can’t quite understand.

“Do you wanna know why I wanted to dance?” Cady whispered. Her tone gave off a vibe of privacy, in the sense that her next words would be something she had rarely shared. Sombered, Janis nodded, not trusting her voice to make any words worthwhile for what Cady might tell her. Cady never answered her, instead opting to pull Janis closer to her. She can feel Cady’s breath against her cheek, close enough that if Janis leaned down just the slightest bit, she could brush her lips against Cady’s. The thought froze her thought process. Janis remained dazed in her position, reeling over the fact that Cady was trying to kiss her. While unresponsive, Cady shook hesitantly and began to step away, her affections unrequited in her perspective. The movement yanked Janis back into the physical plane and she used her hand to angle Cady’s head toward her’s, connecting their lips.

It’s soft and warm and everything she could have imagined. It’s a chaste kiss, a simple peck on the lips, but to Janis, it conveyed all the feelings she had hidden ever since she met Cady. It’s utter bliss to achieve what she wanted. She made a small noise of surprise when Cady began attacking her lips with a suggestive vigor, but doesn’t protest, instead of allowing the other girl to take control.

A flash of a camera shined in her peripheral. She reacted by breaking off the kiss, the old fear of being outed in middle school running through her veins. She turned to face the offender. Damian, a simultaneously smug and elated grin on his face, gave her a thumbs up. The fear disappeared, his support reinforcing her rationality. She faced Cady again, who had a worried expression on her face, terrified of what Janis might do. Janis placed her hand on Cady’s hips, gently ushering the girl into another small dance, waiting for her to relax. The music played in the background, a different song from when they first started. She embraced Cady closer, feeling the warmth of love and affection. Janis committed the scene to memory, from the ambiance of the soft song to the lights making the walls appear to be made of thousands of stars, and Cady’s appearance, the crooked jacket, flushed face, and slightly gaped lips.

“I’m glad you asked me to dance,” she murmured into Cady’s ear, then takes the girl’s lips with her own.