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sᴀᴠɪɴɢ ᴅᴀʏʟɪɢʜᴛ [Sin]

By SmileBright

Replies: 17 / 18 days ago

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Allowed Users

  1. [Allowed] Sin

[center [pic https://i.imgur.com/bMbLjeD.jpg]]

[b They] dated through highschool, being best friends before that. When [b she] went away to college, they broke up, letting each other explore other options, saying if they were meant to be, they would be. [b He] stayed in their town, going to school at a college nearby.

[b They] tried to stay in contact, but it eventually fizzled out, as [b she] assumed she’d never go back to the town she was originally from.

After school, [b she] gets into a serious relationship, and is now engaged. [b She] returns to her old town, wanting to get married back home.

Going to a bar with friends, [b she] just hoping to have a simple night out. But when she looks over to the small stage where they have live music on the weekends, she sees her old best friend, his eyes locked onto her as well while he is singing.

After his set, he makes his way over to her, hoping to reconnect with his old best friend, whom he believes he is still in love with. She seems to feel the connection as well, but now she is happily engaged. But, she seems to not want to tell her friend right away, until her fiance calls wondering where she is. But the two old friends agree to meet up, wanting to catch up properly.

Beginning to reconnect with an old love interest while planning a wedding was not what she expected, but she needs to make a choice. Marry her fiance, or find new love in an old friend.

[center Photo Link:
Name||Age (24+)||Occupation||
Short Bio]

[center [b Him]: Taken
[pic https://i.pinimg.com/564x/b6/b0/03/b6b0039c946f9063b0c0eb685e5d9d51.jpg]
Hunter Ash Miller||26||Bartender/Aspiring Musician||
Short Bio: Even after his best friend left their small town, Hunter did not have the heart to do the same. He had grown up there, and eventually his career could send him somewhere else, and he’d rather soak up his town as much as possible. He dated here and there after [b her], but no one ever compared to the spark the two shared. Even though they stopped talking, he knew all he wanted was her to be happy. When she returned to their town out of the blue, he knew there was a reason she came back, and he wasn’t going to let it get away from him. Not again.]

[center [b Her]: Taken
[pic https://i.imgur.com/z2ZOvm1.jpg]
ᴀʐᴀʀɪᴀʜ ɪᴅᴀʟɪᴀ ᴍᴏᴏɴ||26||Hospice Nurse||
Short Bio: Azariah, also known as Az, has always been a tomboyish girl. Much against her father's wishes on becoming a 'proper lady, Az has always been walking a bit on the rebellious side. Despite her slightly timid nature, Az has a way with having a hard time being too brash and outspoken at the worst moments and too quiet and reserved at the inappropriate times. This has lead her to commit a couple of mistakes, yet she finds her mistakes as small hiccups that help her grow.

However, most of her mistakes have lead others to despise her, run away from her or simply push her away. The one regret she has had was to push her best friend, former boyfriend, away; Hunter. With pride being one of her many flaws, Az didn't have the guts to speak up about her own regret of leaving him behind for feeling like she wouldn't ever be good enough for him. Instead, she chose to move on so he'd have a better chance at life while she'd still be figuring out hers…

After college she met Elijah and everything had seemed to fall into place. Swooned and in love, Az had thought she had it all. Marriage wasn't even a doubt. And thus she wanted to be married back in her hometown where her family was. But then after seeing Hunter again… things felt a bit different.

[center Rules]

-PLEASE BE 21+. The characters are that age and I prefer to write with someone my own age. There are mature themes and it is a comfort thing for me as an educator.
-Real Photos Please. Something that isn't too big, doesn’t have a watermark, and fits the personality of your character. I am more than happy to assist in finding a photo and I can edit it for you as well if need be.
-I can write anywhere from 1000 Characters to 1000 Words. I ask that you stick to AT LEAST 1000-1500 Characters a post.
-This roleplay will be romance based. Please don’t make it immediate, especially for the woman. She is engaged to someone else, whom she loves. She wouldn’t drop him immediately for an old friend. They will have to realize it for themselves.
-You will, at times, may need to play NPCs. Friends, your fiance, etc. I will do the same for my character, but they do not have to be a whole new character. It will be mostly her and him, NPCs just help move the story alone.
-Please PM me a skeleton and I will accept before requesting access to the roleplay. Otherwise, I will refuse.
-Please PM me and let me know if you have any twists or turns you want to add. I love and encourage it!
-Please post at least one a week. I’ll let you know if it will take me longer than that, and I expect the same on your end. If I don’t hear from you and there is no post in 14 days, I will delete the thread and try again.
-PLEASE do not steal this plot. I've been working on this for a while. The poem is not mine but the plot is, so please accept that and do not steal it.
-Let’s have fun!


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He didn't seem too convinced of going. And honestly, she didn't blame him. This was all an awkward situation. And she was sure that if they both hadn't had an ounce of alcohol in their system, it would've been worse. She wouldn't have even said such things! But she still would've invited him… eventually. Or maybe her mother would've, since she always had a soft spot for Hunter.. Surely her father wouldn't, given how much he didn't like Hunter or ever approved of him. The contrast of their views on Hunter had also taken a toll on her and given reason as to why she also made a big decision to leave all together...

He still considered her his best friend despite all of this? "History… we do have a lot of history together, don't we?" She said mainly to herself. A smile then crept on her face when he offered a hug. Something she couldn't ever deny. Not even when she was mad. Az leaned in and wrapped her arms around his body, snuggling up close to him.she rested her head against his chest, listening then to the all too familiar sound of his heartbeat and breathing. It sounded just the same and brought her comfort just as it did years ago. He even smelled the same… something she always love--- she had to stop. She loves Elijah, what the fuck was wrong with her?

"Yas and Gaby want me to have fun this week. Possibly have sex with someone before my big day. I think anything that doesn't involve me doing those kinds of things would be fun for me. I… I'd like to take a trip to the lake. I have a lot of good memories there." She smiled. It'd been the place where she'd first kissed Hunter and the place she'd first realized her feelings for him. She could recall it being their old hangout spot. The place where she first skinny dipped with him when they were still just friends. He always made her feel comfortable… regardless of the situation. That was always one of the things she most admired about him… "We can go skinny dipping like old times. I don't think I'm drunk enough to sink to the bottom. And the cold water will sober me right up!" She grinned like the idiot she was. "And that way… you won't miss me as much again… I can make up for lost time… I'll do anything you want." She leaned up and pressed her lips to his cheek. She stared at him for a moment, taking notice of the longing in his eyes. She… she really knew she couldn't. Even if somewhere deep down inside she secretly wanted to… She swallowed hard and pulled away from him.

Az reached into her pocket and ordered a car. "So the lake it is." She smiled as her eyes met up with his. "Help me pack towels."

At the lake…

Az stared out into the large pool of water. The glistening reflection of the moon shimmering upon the water had always made her fall in love with the scenery. The soft winds that brushed against the tall pine trees that surrounded the waters and the lovely fireflies that fathered around them always made her feel as if she were in some sort of fairytale.

Az looked back at Hunter, her hands behind her back then, secretly trying to maintain her balance and not fall off boardwalk. "It's just as beautiful as I remember it." She finally said before turning back to look at the waters. "I can't believe how much I miss this place… I remember when we used to camp here sometimes." When they actually were friends and then things got complicated after she got drunk and kissed him. She had been a total mess that night...

"Well, no use in wasting time." Az reached down and removed her pants, tossing them gently to the side, doing the same with her shirt once she'd removed it. She looked over her shoulder at Hunter. "Last one in is a rotten egg." She said with a grin before running off and jumping in.

Az shivered as the cold waters pricked at her skin like needles. In a sense it had sobered her up, but even then she had felt drunker than ever. Maybe it was because she was enjoying this moment all together. Reliving the good ol' days when she wasn't worried about much… back before she had just been friends with Hunter.

Once As surfaced, she wiped the excess water from her face and eyes before looking for him. Once she spotted him she smiled. She moved over to him and splashed him playfully. "I hope this can make up for our lost time? I missed this. Not the cold persay, but just being like this with you. I'm going to have a tough time finding a girl for you, I'm not gonna lie. Especially with such little time. But I'm sure I can find her. Or maybe I can ask Gaby or Yas to help. Even your dudes." She moved closer to him. "Maybe I'll find your soulmate." She smiled. "What do you think, Hunter? What do you want?"
Hunter smiled as she spoke about him reminding her about her hangovers. But when he asked about if she was excited, it was like she choked. He reached out to rub her back when she did so, but stopped himself. But he was happy she was excited, she should be. But, he wasn’t excited about her getting married to someone else when they just got reunited. If she was dating, it would have been easier on him but married. He didn’t want to make her unhappy, and this new guy made her happy. But, he wished he could have been the one to make her that happy. That he could have gotten down on one need and gave her a ring. His ring wouldn’t have been as nice and big as the one currently on her finger, but he would have given her something she truly loved nevertheless.

When she mentioned why she couldn’t wear white, he rubbed the back of his neck awkwardly. [i “Yeah, I did do that.”] he spoke softly. Their first time was awkward and messy, but he hoped she had enjoyed the other times they had been intimate together. It was very few and far between, but he had enjoyed the times they had together. His eyes brightened when she said she wanted to wear black, and he thought she’d look absolutely amazing, but seemed like she was talked out of it. And he smiled when she said she’d be changing, he knew that immediately. She was a tomboy type, not one to wear a dress a whole night.

When Hunter gave her that look, the look that he gave when he wanted to lean in and kiss her, she ended up crawling over to him. He got flustered, as he could have sworn she would lean in, but she had just laid her head in her lap. When her head hit his lap, he laughed to himself. Why did he think she would kiss him, she was literally getting married! He was so stupid to even think that could happen, she wasn’t like that at all. He let his hand lightly play with her hair, it was soft and just how he remembered. He leaned back against the headboard, closing his eyes as well.

As she spoke, his eyes opened. All the things she was saying, he didn’t know how to feel. That she was actually nervous, her future husband reminded her of him, that she wanted him to come to her wedding. His face heated up, so he was happy her eyes were closed and her face covered. But once she looked up at him, he couldn’t help but smile at her. He still didn’t speak as she spoke. He had one girlfriend who he was close to keeping forever, Abigail Matthews . He had been planning to propose to Abbie, a woman he had been dating for three years, but he then found out that she had only been dating him to make her ex-boyfriend jealous. When he brought up the date he planned to propose to her at, she had realized what it was and ended it. She didn’t want to marry him, and they broke up. After Abbie, he’d been only keeping flings or short term relationships, getting close to people was hard. When she put her hand to his face, he leaned into his hand slightly. But then, she was sat up.

Wait, she [i wanted] him at her wedding. He couldn’t say no, or it would give away how hard this was for him to process. [i “Oh, uh, sure. If you’d like.”] he smiled, nodding softly. A date, picked out by his ex-girlfriend. He knew that whoever he picked, she would be great, especially with how well Az knew him. But, he wondered how she’d be able to find a date for him in such a short amount of time, especially when she's been gone for so long. Would it be someone coming to the wedding? Or would it be someone from their small town? He would be more nervous if he wasn’t intoxicated, and he could freak out tomorrow.

[i “And, I consider you my best friend still as well. We have too much history to throw it away because we broke up and spent a couple of years apart.”] Hunter smiled. He held his arm out, something he did to allow her to lean into his side. He didn’t know if she’d accept the gesture, but he thought he’d offer. [i “You don’t have to…”] he spoke, letting his hand fall, but leaving it outstretched if she did decide to come over to him.

[i “So, was the dancers the last thing on the schedule for tonight? Is there anything we could do to make your night be perfect? We could go get some milkshakes and fries, or take an uber to the lake? Or we could just pop in a movie like we used to? Or, we could just talk? I know I already told you, but I really missed you, Az.”] Hunter explained. He wanted to tell her how his world felt dark without her here, how it was hard to get out and do anything because all he thought of was her. But, that would just make her feel bad, and why would he do that to her on her bachelorette party night. Hunter tried his hardest, but he couldn’t help but take glances at her lips as he spoke, but knew he couldn’t act on how he really felt.
“Hey Sunshine.” he spoke, coming to her side. Hunter was no stranger to using nicknames, ‘Sunshine’ being one he used rarely but definitely one he liked the best. It contrasted with her last name, which is how he came up with it in the first place. He scooped her up, a hand on her back and under the bend of her legs. He lifted her easily, placing her on the bed softly.

Az jumped in her skin at the sudden voice in the room. Sunshine? This was definitely Hunter… she couldn't mistake his voice for anyone else's. But her thoughts were too preoccupied with trying to get up from the floor. Her eyes shifted over to him. His sudden actions caused a small gssp to escape her lips. Did everyone seem to pick her up that easily? Like… shit. She wasn't a doll.

She kept her eyes on him as he teased her. Yeah.. she wasn't the dancer type… but he clearly was. Again… not that it should've mattered to her. Even though he tried to explain himself and what he felt… Az couldn't seem to believe him. Maybe it was because of the blurred thoughts in her head. "I just don't enjoy having a stranger wiggle his dick at me in my face." She said before laying back on the bed. "Though I wonder, if I wasn't here making things awkward, would you have enjoyed her? I bet you would." Az laughed as she took the bottle.

Hunter always used to take care of her Whenever she'd fuck up this badly. That was done she couldn't ever complain about. Hunter was always well aware of her in that sense. And she truly could recall the night she had drank one drink too many from her father's secret whiskey stash after having a long, miserable 'conversation' with one of the girls from her previous school who was after Hunter. It was the same night she learned the cruelty of others. It was also the night she couldn't tell Hunter in fear that he'd lash out again and end up in trouble once more because of his temper. No, Azariah would rather keep her bullied life in the dark.

"I remember I wanted to die. My head was killing me and I couldn't stop throwing up. Thank you for reminding me." She smiled at him as she downed the bottled water. Given his question, Az had suddenly spat up some of the water, some of it also coming out of her nose. She coughed vigorously before wiping her mouth. "Excited?" She coughed again before settling the bottled water aside and sitting up. "Well, of course I am." But it was still a complicated answer. She was excited for the wedding, but nervous for the aftermath.

It was a big step, a long term commitment. Something Az wasn't entirely sure she was ready for. But she always was that way with everything. And judging by.how well Elijah treated her, Az knew she wouldn't regret a moment with him… but she also hoped that she wouldn't have changed her mind later on and possibly make him feel unloved. And now that Hunter was back in the picture… That uncertain feeling was worse…

"Well… my mother wants me to wear white. But I clearly can't wear it given the nature that I am no longer a … well you should know. It was your fault." Az admitted shyly with a slightly nervous giggle. "Anyways, I was actually thinking of wearing a black dress. No fluff, nothing extravagant… just something simple and elegant. Yas and Gaby were a bit against it. So I still got a white dress waiting for me. And I will feel like a hypocrite." She laughed. "I guess they are too scared for me to wear black since it's bad luck to do so, apparently. Given my record, I always have bad luck so it wouldn't be surprising to me." Not that it really mattered to her beyond this point in time… "And yes… You're right. I will change into my regular boy clothes. Because, you know how much I love frilly dresses and shit." She laughed. Though as her eyes met with his, she noticed the look in it. It was an all too familiar look. Given the years they shared together, Az already knew what he wanted… What… she couldn't give.

She opted to simply crawl over to him and lay her head upon his lap with closed eyes. "If I had to admit it to someone, I'm nervous about all of this. I'm not sure what I'm doing, but I'm still doing it. If that makes sense…" She covered her face with her hands. "Elijah is a great guy. He also reminds me of you." But he wasn't Hunter… "I wanted you to come to my wedding, but I wasn't sure if you'd want to go or would feel weird about it. I… I still consider you my best friend and a wedding without my best friend isn't a good wedding." She pulled her hands from.her face and looked up at him with a smile. "And I always wondered when you would finally settle down. I thought that by now you'd end up with some girl that could be as badass as you and would convince you for more than just a simple long term relationship. Then again, you also lean towards the whole badboy/lone wolf." She reached up and caressed his face. "But you always had a heart of gold. It's a shame no one has able to claim it yet…" Her eyes widened. She sat up abruptly. "I could find you someone! I-I mean… if you want me to. I could find you someone or at least someone to come to the wedding with."
After giving him a pretty decent dance with no reaction, the woman decided not to waste her time on Hunter anymore, which he was honestly fine with. He sat on the bed, watching the dances and reactions his friends provided her, which the woman ate up. You could tell the reactions were what she was looking for most, and she appreciated the tips the boys had been sliding into whatever few clothing articles she had on. But Hunter’s mind just kept going to Az. He needed to do something, or he was going to go crazy thinking about it, so he got himself up and headed to the bathroom.

Hunter starred in the mirror, leaning his hands on the counter. He sighed deeply, before turning around, leaning on the counter now. All he could think about was Az, and her getting married soon. In just a few short days, the woman he assumed he would be walking down the aisle with would be tied to someone else. Someone he didn’t even know. It was hard for him to think, at this point, about anything. The alcohol, mixed with the confusion he felt for Az, even if he knew it was wrong. He just hoped the two of them could sit down and talk about what happened, give them both closure and they could both move on. She would get married, and he would...figure out something. He hoped they could, now that they reunited, stay friends this time. He would make sure of it, he wasn’t going to lose her again.

Hunter returned from the bathroom, when he heard Gaby’s voice. She appeared like she was having fun, her hair slightly messed up and her shirt disheveled a bit as well. When she spoke of Az, he nodded. [i “Sure, she okay?”] he asked, but before she responded, he was off. He gave Tommy a couple of bills he had stuffed in his pocket, before heading out of the room. He would get more use out of them than he was anyway. He went into the hallway, before seeing a door slightly ajar with an agitated Az struggling to get up. [i “Hey Sunshine.”] he spoke, coming to her side. Hunter was no stranger to using nicknames, ‘Sunshine’ being one he used rarely but definitely one he liked the best. It contrasted with her last name, which is how he came up with it in the first place. He scooped her up, a hand on her back and under the bend of her legs. He lifted her easily, placing her on the bed softly.

Hunter made sure she was comfortable, he could tell she was clearly still very intoxicated. He was almost happy the two were alone, away from any friends who would judge any conversation they had. He took a seat at the end of the bed, turning toward her. [i “Really not a dancer type, huh?”] he teased softly, before pulling one leg under himself. [i “Me either. She seemed disinterested in me once she realized I was disinterested in her.”] he laughed, rubbing his hands together.

Hunter got up, going into the small fridge the hotel had, grabbing a bottle of water for the girl. [i “Here, this should help.”] he held it out to her, sitting down next to her now. [i “You need to stay hydrated, and take Advil before bed or you're going to be miserable in the morning. And I remember how you were after I carried you home. Remember you called me when you woke up?”] he teased, the memory clear in his head. He had told her to drink water and take Advil, but the girl was too tired and drunk to do anything but pass out right then. She then called him bright and early to tell him he was right, and that she was paying the price now.

Hunter knew the only way he was going to get over Az was to just accept the fact that she was getting married, talk to her about it and move on. He’d talk about their situation when she was a little more clear headed. He had basically sobered up when Gaby asked him to keep Az comfortable. Sure, he had his confidence of alcohol, but he was able to hold himself, at least for the most part. [i “So, are you excited?”] he asked, looking at the ceiling. [i “For your wedding.”] he finished, his eyes finding hers. [i “I bet your dress looks amazing. You never liked to dress up, I could see you changing after the ceremony so you can be more comfortable.”] he teased, a small laugh coming after his statement. He wasn’t happy to be talking about this, but thinking about her was something he could always find a reason to smile about. As he spoke, he could help but let his eyes wander to her lips, wishing he was able to kiss them like he had years ago. Before he let it get to a point of no return, he made his eyes return back to her eyes, which was just as dangerous as her lips.
It was nice to feel his comforting touch once again. Az was ashamed to admit that there were times when she was with Elijah, Hunter would come to mind. Mainly because there were small details that Elijah would do that would remind her of Hunter. And this was one of them… the way he always seemed to bring her comfort. And yet, Az felt a slight bit of discomfort in the pit of her stomach once again. Maybe it was because he was too close to her?

Az didn’t realize she was holding her breath until he questioned her words. Bad girl… Well she meant bad girl in the sense of her doing something wrong. Like the mixed feelings she had right now. She didn’t want to feel this way anymore. No, she wanted to finally put a stop to it and move on from these feelings. Whatever they were… or maybe she was just over thinking about this all together again? No, she was pretty sure she still had feelings for Hunter somewhere deep down inside. Which was entirely wrong given that she also had feelings for Elijah. Wait, was that even possible?

“I’m not a bad girl… I just have very bad thoughts…” She spoke a bit mumbled as she was taken into the room. Her eyes settled upon Yas who suddenly pulled her away from Hunter. Her eyes shifted over to Hunter who also had been pulled away from her. This… this was an all too familiar feeling. A Deja Vu moment. Az could remember the times in the past that they’d been told that they weren’t good for one another, how much everyone was against her being with someone like him. Hunter was the popular guy and she… she was nothing compared to him. Even then he had chosen her, but why did he really choose her? Why her out of all the other girls that were a lot better than her? And even after he had chosen her… she still didn’t feel good enough.

"Are you ready?" Yas questioned as she opened the door. Az then took notice of the three men that stood at the doorway. One of the men was copper toned with muscles anywhere she looked, with brown hair and blue eyes. The other man had chiseled abs with dark skin that shined brightly. His almond colored eyes contrasted with his skin and his long braided hair. The other man's golden hair complemented his blue eyes and porcelain skin, his body was muscular, but not like the other men.

"Oohhh girls… God sent us angels!" Yas giggled. Gaby only sat down next to Az, waiting for the show.

As soon as the men walked in, Az's vision became a blur. She could hear the loud music and her friends laughing, giggling, moaning even. But Az really wasn't interested in the show, nor the men who danced away, showing off their bodies. Instead, she had only wondered if Hunter was enjoying his time like her friends were. she only hoped he did…

"You're the bride to be?" One of the men spoke, pulling Az out of her thoughts. Her eyes lifted from the ground and stared into his honey colored eyes. Feeling as suddenly pulled her up from the seat.

"I'm sorry, what?" She replied half a daze. It was then that he suddenly picked her up, as if she weighed nothing, and wrapped her legs around his waist. Az blinked twice, if she wasn't sober before, she felt a bit sober now. Not really… but she was aware of what was happening. "C-can you please put me down?"

"So you're a shy one. It's ok. I won't hurt you. Just want you to feel pleasure." He winked at her. Az raised an eyebrow. She instantly tapped his shoulders.

"No, I'm really not into this…" she said softly. Her eyes drifting to her other friends who seemed to be enjoying it. Her stomach began to spin along with the room. Az looked back at the man and pulled his face to look at her straight in the eye. "I know they paid you to give me a good time. But I'd like it better if you'd instead take me to the bathroom? I want to throw up…"

The man laughed and nodded. He carried her back over to the bathroom and gently placed her down, helping her keep her balance. "Are you sure you don't want the happy ending surprise?" He gave her a cocky smile.

Az blinked twice and shook her head. "No offense, but the only happy ending I want is something you can't provide me with you flopping your dick around. It's nice though. Excuse me." With that she closed the door and collapsed to her knees by the toilet and threw up.

Moments later, Az could hear her friends becoming rowdy in their room. Az could only imagine what they were doing. Then again, she didn't want to imagine. She didn't want to know.

Az washed up her face, struggling to turn off the faucet. Damn… she was really wasted. She could tell. And she could see it in her own reflection in the mirror. This was a terrible idea… but she was here. She had come this far…

Az splashed her face once more with water and reached for the door. Opening it quietly, she watched as her friends got dry humped on and danced for. They were having a lovely time. No use for ruining it for them… So Az tried her best to walk out of the bathroom and closed the door behind her. She wondered if the boys were having as much fun…

Making her way through the hall, struggling to keep standing up right by hanging on to the walls for dese life, Az finally made it into the room where the female stripper was. Her eyes then fell upon Hunter, the woman straddling him, her arms wrapped around his neck and her chest all up on his face basically.

Az felt heat rising within her, her chest now compressed with bitterness. It almost felt like when they were younger… the feeling she had when other girls attempted to get with him… But why would she care now? He was single… he had every right to enjoy a woman like her… And yet she hated it…

She felt the contents of her stomach coming up once more, Az quickly covered her mouth and hid back in the hallway. He...he deserved more than what she could've ever given… He was happier this way… right?

Az quietly made her way back into her own room and collapsed upon the bed----floor. She groaned in pain. "You're a fucking idiot." She muttered to herself. "Why… why did you do this to yourself?" She struggled to get up. "You should've stayed… why did you leave?" Why had she left Hunter?

Meanwhile… Gaby was the first to notice that Az was no longer around. Though drunk off her ass, Gaby had removed the stripper from her and looked around. She looked in the bathroom, then in the hallway. Her eyes noticed Az quietly hiding. She looked upset. Gaby watched as she left and she quickly walked into the room where the other three were. Gaby looked at Hunter. He had seemed to be closer to her… right?" "Hey, you. My friend is lonely… mind cheering her up a bit? I bet she'll give you more of a good time than Ms. Cherry here." Gaby winked at him. "She really needs it. Getting married in a few days, she needs to… let out a lot before then, you know?" She laughed.
Hunter could help but smile when she pulled his hands to her waist, holding her close to him as he had done in the past. It felt natural to hold her close like this. They had gone to very few parties, a couple he was able to drag Az to, and they had been able to dance together. But tonight, he mainly wanted to keep her away from creeps who would try and pull her away, a drunk guy who was just looking for a sloppy makeout session in the back alley. He cared about Azariah, more than he should for someone who was getting married in a few weeks, and felt a need to keep her safe. They were still friends, at least to him, even with all the time that past. So, he moved with her as she began to sway with the music, keeping his hands planted on her waist. He looked over to his friends, Richie following Yaz’s lead, letting his hands roam before they rested on her backside, while Tom had his hands on Gaby’s hips. And soon, they all had plenty to drink and were worn out from dancing, Yaz’s wasn’t kidding when she said they’d supply the drinks, they definitely delivered.

[i “I’m coming, I’m coming.”] Hunter laughed, following Az out of the elevator. The other two coupled up had been holding each other up, while Az tried to run ahead, Hunter had tried to pull her back. As the other two couples piled into the room, Hunter and Az were still making their way down the hallway to the door. Once he made his way to her, he took hold of her, grabbing her waist to hold her up. He had never seen her so drunk before, but it was kind of cute, if he was being honest. When she started talking about the dancers, he laughed. [i “I guess, yeah.”] he laughed with her. Sure, having dancers come to the room was fun and all, but he would have rather just taken the time to catch up with Az. She wasn't into it either, but her friends surely weren’t going to let their fun go to waste without her.

When Hunter saw her face change, his face did too. To concern. [i “Hey hey hey. No, you’re not a hoe. I don’t think anyone in the whole world would make that mistake.”] he spoke calmly, but stifled a laugh. He placed a hand to her cheek, his other hand holding her arm to keep her upright. He used his thumb to push away the tears that fell from her eyes, and let a sigh escape his lips. [i “Not yet? Why would you be a bad girl?”] he teased, a small laugh escaping his lips as he moved his arm back to her waist, bringing her into the hotel room and shutting the door behind them.

Hunter sat Azariah down the plush bed, letting himself sit down as well, but laying his body back against the cushion. But soon, his friends were pulling him into the other room the girls had, as they rented a suite, and into the other bathroom to freshen up. The two other boys messed with their hair, as Hunter just sat on the counter. [b “What? You too much of a pretty boy think you don’t need to do anything? Already look good enough.”] Richie teased, while Hunter rolled his eyes. [i “I’m just not looking to impress anyone. And besides, don’t they HAVE to like you, no matter what? That’s how they make money.”] he laughed, running a hand through his hair, tossing it a bit. [b “Whatever, buzzkill.”] Richie replied, before finishing up his hair.

Hunter was actually happy they were in another room, as he was pretty sure with the alcohol in him, if he saw Az look uncomfortable with the dancer, he’d punch him in the face. Hunter had a bit of an anger problem, even back in highschool, and wasn’t afraid to punch someone or something if things went awry. He assumed she didn’t know, but he had beaten up a kid who had been making jokes about Az behind her back, and he just told her his parents let him skip school for a couple of days after, even if it was actually suspension. No one really messed with her after that, which is how Hunter liked it.

Hunter could hear Yaz and Gaby oohing and ahhing over their dancers who had just arrived, and the boys reentered the first room they were in. The dancer’s were here, and as soon as the lady saw the boys enter, a sultry smile played on her lips. She pushed them into the other room, closing the door behind her. Sure, this was fun, but he couldn’t let himself relax because he was too concerned with Az. Before she left, they sent almost all their time together, and leaving her so quickly was odd to him now. The woman sure gave them a show, and at least Richie and Tom fully enjoyed it. Hunter was able to forget and relax a bit, but whenever he heard a noise come from the other door, he just couldn’t help to think what was happening in the other room.

As the woman tried to get Hunter’s attention, strading on top of him, giving him a dance any guy would die to have, he just seemed uninterested. If this had happened yesterday, he would have been all for this, but his mind had been running so much since he first saw Az, there was no way he could enjoy it. She realized his disinterest, moving on to the other boys who would give her the attention she wanted. He just hoped Azariah was having somewhat of a good time, but he knew this wasn’t something she was interested in. He hoped her friends would help her relax, and allow her to take the dancer in her own way, not hold her down and force him onto her.
Hunter was right… However, Az wasn't sure about Yas and Gaby being totally her best friends when it came.to that. Yeah, they knew her in a way. They were around every now and again. And of course they were always there for her when she wanted a fun time. But they never really got to know her, about her past and such. Maybe it was because Az didn't feel comfortable telling them about how badly she fucked up back when she messed up her relationship with Hunter--Both the friendship and lovers relationship.

Az smiled as Hunter spoke about her. At least he still saw her in a good light. But would he still feel that way tomorrow? After all, they'd all been drinking… Who was she kidding. It was Hunter. But even then… years could change people.

And there it was, the smile that made her heart melt away as he repeated after her. Forever… but forever was such a short time when it came to them. She had promised to be his forever and now she was getting married to Elijah. Did forever even exist in their book?

Az placed her glass down, watching as her friends were taken away to the dance floor. Of course they were more than happy to have been dragged off by some hot guys. It was their thing, what they always looked forward to at a party or get together. Mainly so they'd have a good story to tell.

Az, however, was comfortable sitting at the table with Hun-- "S-sweetheart?" Her face blushed, her eyes stared at him with curiousness. She… she hadn't heard him call her that in ages. And now… it felt odd. Uncomfortable even…

Az was basically dragged from the table against her will. Of course she wouldn't fight about it, since it was Hunter. And for some reason, Az always did whatever Hunter wanted her to do… even when she really didn't want to. Reason? She hated to see him hurt… as hurt as that last time she had looked at him when she left… Fuck.

Az wasn't a large crowd kind of girl. But she couldn't help but feel her friends' eyes on her, begging her to dance. Her grip on Hunter's hand tightened. She was anxious in the pit of her stomach. But they all seemed to be having fun. Especially Yas who didn't hold back on becoming handsy with Richie.

Az turned to look at Hunter as he pulled his hand away from hers. Her sense of confidence had suddenly left her body when he moved closer to her. It became second nature for her to suddenly close her eyes when he leaned in. As if waiting for a kiss. But… instead she heard him whisper into her ear, his breath brushing against her neck. Az couldn't help but laugh nervously. She opened her eyes and looked at him.

He should've known by now how terrible she was at dancing. So instead, her hand reached out for his and pulled him closer to her, wrapping his arms around her waist as she pressed her back against him. Now, Az wasn't sure if it was the alcohol or the comforting feeling he gave off to her, but Az had found herself moving her body to the music. She swayed with the music, enjoying the moment she had with him. And just like that…. Before she knew it the time at the bar had flown by. Drinks after drinks, laughter after laughter and song after song.

Az hadn't realized how drunk she was. But one thing was sure, her body hurt from all the dancing and her stomach hurt from all the laughter. She had allowed herself to come out of her shell a bit. But that was only when she felt comfortable…. Like when she was around…

"Hunter! You slowpoke. They're already at the room door! Get off the elevator!" Az slurred her words as she laughed. She attempted to pull him out of the elevator, but her laughter made her too weak to even do so.

"Yas! Fuck Yas! Open the door already!" Gaby said as she tried her best to hold herself up with Tom. The two seemingly giggling.

Yasmine had then finally opened the door and walked in with the three others. Soon peeking around the corner of the door to Hunter and Az. "Yo, I called the strippers! They'll be here any minute. We should prepare ourselves." Yas laughed before disappearing into the room.

Az laughed before looking back at Hunter. "You're going to get a treat. You and the uys get to see boobies all up in your face. Get a jiggly bubble butt rub. I, on the other hand, have to deal with some dude wiggling his thing on my face. That is… if Yas doesn't get to him first. Or Gabs." She smiled brightly. But her smile then faded. "Oh God, does this make me a hoe? I'm not a hoe." Her eyes suddenly filled up with tears. "I'm a good girl. Not a bad girl. At least not yet!"
The smile that sat on Hunter’s lips was bright, something he hadn’t felt like in a long time. Being able to be so happy was something he had been experiencing, especially as of late, and just having Az next to him brought it back. Listening as she spoke about carrying her home, he knew exactly what she was talking about. The two had gotten drunk together, both extremely nervous before Azariah had pressed her lips to Hunter’s, and he was able to quickly return the kisses back to her. That was the night they had kind of started dating, but Hunter confirmed the next morning, as he was unsure if he had actually asked her to be his that night.

[i “Actually, I’ve been working out. I actually enjoy working out now.”] he laughed. He had tried working out in highschool, and he hated it. He complained every single day to her about how he hated working out, but once she had left him, he needed to find something to get his mind off of her. So, he sang and ran. After he found out he enjoyed running, the gym became more enjoyable. Somewhere where he didn’t have to sit and wallow in his feelings, which happened if he sat still for too long.

But, what he was really interested in now was hearing how the girls met. Mainly, because he wanted to hear what Az was really like in college. He had always imagined she would break out of her shell while in college, go out and make lots of friends and have a lot of fun. But, immediately, he knew that wasn’t the case from Gaby’s story. Of course, she was the same as she was in high school. Keeping to herself, working really hard in school. Hunter always tried to bring her into friend groups he was in, but no one really stuck with her, except him. Hunter listened to her story, giving his own opinions through his facial expressions, as well as his friends, making comments through noises, as to not break the story.

Then, Yaz’s story was a bit more vulgar than the first. To be honest, Hunter would have never expected these kinds of people being Azariah’s best friends. He would have pictured different, someone who was similar to her. Yet, here she was with party girls, but they do seem like they were kind to her, which they were. She also showed them her kind heartedness, which is why their friendships started. And he always knew that would never leave the female. [i “Hey, being popular never beats having a few best friends. I think we both know that.”] he said, motioning to his best friends. Sure, he had lots of ‘friends’, more like acquaintances, but they were just around for a good time. They’d come to a house party or a show of his, but only Richie or Tom would show up at his house at 2am if he needed them.

Hunter looked toward Yaz, [i “Her heart has always been in the right place.”] he spoke, then turning to her, giving her a warm smile. Hunter took the shot glass that was slid toward him, holding it up to cheers with everyone. But, was pulled into a small cheers with just Az, when she met her gaze with him. He smiled at her, his teeth showing now. [i “Forever.”] he clinked their glasses, before shooting back the alcohol.

As the music became louder in the bar, Richie’s face lit up. [b “Aw, guys. We gotta dance, I love this song.”] he smiled, before taking Yaz with him. Tom followed behind, bringing Gaby by the hand with him too. Hunter smirked, [i “I know you’d rather stay here, but this is your night sweetheart. Let’s go dance.”] Hunter took another quick shot before he took her hand, pulling her to the dance floor. He hand was soft and the fact that he was able to call her sweetheart with such ease caused his face to heat up, but it was concealed by the heat the liquor brought to his face.

It was busy, and crowded, but Hunter made sure they found their friends. They had a small circle, the boys outside to protect the girls from any skeezy guys trying to make a pass. Gaby and Yaz seemed to dance with whatever male they had been paired with, while Hunter kept a little distance between the two of them. This was her bachelorette party, and, considering her friends were going to hire strippers, they wanted her to get some kind of action tonight. But, he knew that wasn’t Az’s style. If she ended up wanting to dance with her, he’d let her. Their hands were still intertwined, so he gave a small sip, trying to make her more comfortable in the crowd. He pulled his hand away, but leaned into her ear so she could hear him over the pounding music. [i “Do you want to dance?”] he asked, [i “However you feel comfortable.”] a smirk making its way to his face, his voice smooth as it left his lips.
Az studied hunter closely. His actions spoke louder than the words that slipped from his mouth. The slightly hurt look behind his eyes. She almost felt guilty for having mentioned anything. In a way, she already regretted coming back. But since he was going to push past this and pretend everything was fine, then she'd do the same… for his sake.

Her heart fluttered a bit when she suddenly felt him lean closer to her. It was a rather unfamiliar yet familiar feeling. A feeling she could remember but had forgotten about. But his words made her laugh. At least he knew her well enough to identify who truly wanted the strippers. He would've known how… uninteresting she found other naked people to be. Though there was only one person who made her feel hot and bothered, nervous even, when she saw them naked, and it was--- "Hunter, you should know by now that it's gonna be very easy to get me drunk. I'm a lightweight as it is…" Hell, even right now she felt a bit buzzed, but it wasn't that bad yet… She just hoped she'd make it through the night. Especially now that she was near him… "I'd still love to go out with you. Afterall, catching up with a friend with a couple of drinks sounds pretty amazing. I just hope your back is still good. Since you're probably gonna have to carry me home like that first night we got drunk under the stars."

She could recall that night… It had been the night they had first kissed. Or well...the night she had kissed him and drunkenly confessed her feelings for him. She couldn't remember much else from that night… But she could remember his soft warm lips pressed to hers, the way he gazed at her, the way he held her closely…

Az shook the thought from her head and looked over at their friends. "No shame in that. It means all of you are wonderful writers. I remember Hunter being good with poetry. He always had to explain poetry to me… I guess I'm a little slow when it comes to verbal art." She laughed.

Yas looked at Hunter then. "Oh us, how we met?" Yasmine started while she laughed. "Oh boy, that was just a mess. Did you know this gurl is clumsy?" Yasmine looked at Gaby who laughed even harder.

"Az was my roommate in college. But I didn't really get to meet her since she is quieter than a church mouse. I met Az after I got drunk at a party. This girl had been invited to the college party but didn't go. No, she was too good to go and hang with us. I was trying to get back to my room but instead I fell face first into the college fountain. I was drowning in an inch of water, can you believe that?" Gaby smiled before looking at Az. "I just remember hearing this mamacita telling me off of how much of an idiot I was. How I was wasting my life on partying. How I wasn't going to pass my exam. And she was right. But this little girl dragged my fatass back to our dorm. She didn't complain, didn't tell me anything the next morning. She just took care of me. No questions, no judgement, just pure caring nature. And then I puked on her face. Best friends since. Right Az?"

Az cringed. "Yes… bestest if friends." She chuckled. "It was horrible… I smelled vomit for a week…"

"My turn, my turn." Yas cleared her throat. "I met Az butt naked, riding some guys dick in college. She kind of walked in on us getting it on. I remember her face was priceless, as if she had seen a ghost. She was paler than Casper, but her cheeks were redder than the apple that killed Snow White." She laughed. "She was in the college pool, we were in the locker room and boom! We got caught. She didn't snitch on us though, just got traumatized for a while. At first I thought she was the bitch trying to steal my mine away. But then I realized that she was just a little mouse trying to find somewhere to hide from the crowds that followed her taunting her. So… we became friends after. Now she my bitch." Yas smiled at Az.

"Totally, your bitch." Az rolled her eyes with a smile. Her eyes shifted over to Hunter. "I'm not as popular as you were, Hunter. Not even after college."

"Damn right. But your heart is in a good place, honey. That's all that matters." Yas smiled before looking at all of them. "Let us drink to our long lasting friendships!" She poured everyone a shot.

Az smiled and held her glass up to everyones, through her eyes soon met with Hunter's gaze. "To keeping our friendship forever?" She gently hit her glass against his. And downed the shot as everyone did.
The way one of her friends spoke made Hunter nervous. [b “You’re gonna tell him, right?”]. He liked to believe Az wouldn’t hide anything from him, but maybe that was back when they were close. They had 8 years between them now, and now, someone else too. [i “Tell me what?”] he cluelessly asked, until it all made sense.

Married. Azariah was getting married. In two weeks. To a freaking doctor. How was he supposed to compete with a doctor? He wasn’t surprised, honestly, because he knew how beautiful,competent, smart and charming she was, but he had hoped she was single, and that he actually had a chance. At that moment, he knew he should have ran after her father’s car that took her away from him. He should have gone with her, but he let her slip right through his fingers. He should have known someone would have snatched her up sooner rather than later. But, he couldn’t let her see the hurt he felt. Instead, he smiled. [i “That’s amazing. Congratulations.”]. He peered at the diamond ring she had gotten, and it was perfect. Something she deserved from someone she deserved, someone better than him. But, the way that she refused eye contact when she told him, showed she may be a bit embarrassed about it.

As her friends began to speak, Hunter was actually confused. Why were they asking him, her ex-boyfriend, to spend her bachelorette party with her? Then it clicked, they had no idea about him. About them. They were her new friends, and this whole area was new to them, including him. Tom and Richie were in the moment they heard what the girls had up their sleeves. Something right up their alley. He was about to politely decline, before Az’s voice spoke up.

Hearing her saying she wouldn’t mind having him around changed his mind immediately. Even if it was only two weeks and she would most likely move back to where she was before, leave again, he still wanted to reconnect. She had been his girlfriend, but she had been his best friend first. And he missed that more than anything. He wanted it, he wanted to be able to be there for her like he had been before. Through everything, they were there for eachother, and he got a do-over. And he wasn’t going to mess it up again.

[i “Sure, I’d love to.”] Hunter smiled, looking into her eyes. Those eyes he had missed dearly. He let his gaze slip away from her eyes, as to not heighten suspicion of her friends or her. He leaned over to her ear, lowering his voice, [i “I can guarantee the dancers are not your idea.”] he teased. Even with 8 years between them, he still knew her. She couldn’t have changed that much, personality wise...right? [i “Also, you’re gonna have to let me take you out or come over, I want to be able to catch up with my friend while we’re drunk at a club.”] he finished, before pulling away from her. And he meant it, he just wanted to catch up. Even if he was being even the tiniest bit flirty, he wasn’t about to be a homewrecker.

Their friends seemed enamored enough with each other that they didn’t notice his whispers, except maybe Richie who was giving him a side-eye look. He knew what that was. Richie didn’t want Hunter to ruin this for her, as Hunter cared for people hard and deep. But, that’s why Hunter controlled himself too. He wouldn’t do anything, unless she wanted to. He had nothing to hold against whoever she was marrying, but if she wanted it, he’d oblige, for her. But he wanted to, more than anything.

Hunter knew he couldn’t be silent now, he had to keep talking. But, he was ready to be done talking about her fiance, and would prefer anything else. [i “So, how did you all meet? Have you guys ever been to our small town before?”] he spoke, his charm seeping into his words. [i “You’d never guess it, but I met these goofballs in an advanced classic literature class in college.”] he teased towards his friends, who threw a few profanities towards him. [i “We got stuck on a project together, and they never left me alone.”] he teased further, his smile not leaving his face.

More profanities and teasing punches, Hunter quieted up. Even though he studied music, he gave himself a buffer of minoring in English. What that would do for him, he wasn’t sure, but it did keep his parents off his back. Hunter was a natural writer, as essays and projects of that nature came easy to him. He was also an avid reader, so English was an obvious choice. But music had always been his passion. And if he needed, he could easily become a teacher, which had always been his backup idea.
Az smiled as he spoke about his life. It was nice to know that he was still the same. Hadn't really done much with his life or pursued a luxurious career. Instead he had kept it simple and decided to stay where he was most comfortable. Even though most people would've seen it as being lazy or even lame, Az found it ro be quite respectable and smart. Here he would have those who'd back him up no matter what. He didn't have to be constantly worrying about failure in his own town with his own people. He knew this place like the back of his hand and could find multiple ways to prosper. Unlike her who had to struggle a litt---lot at the beginning...

His laugh was contagious, Az found herself smiling. She had almost forgotten how much she enjoyed his laughter. Even after he explained that he had written it for her… He had written a song for her… after she left. Had he felt that lonely? Or was this his way of getting over her after she was gone? Whatever it was, she couldn't pay much mind to it. It was already over… And now she had Elijah.

His question had suddenly caught her off guard. She had almost forgotten about the bachelorette party she was participating in… She really didn't want to tell him. "I'm actually here for a good while. Two weeks to be exact. And honestly it's because I'm having a bach---"

Her eyes shifted to the men and her friends. Gaby was next to Tom while Yasmine had her arm wrapped around Richie's arm. She was a leech that way. Once she liked someone, she wouldn't let go so easily, unless asked to or given a proper reason.

"Oh, hi Rishie." Az replied with a smile. Her eyes then shifted to Tom who spoke. Her heart nearly stopped for a moment. This wasn't too bad. But even then Az felt a sense of guilt wash over her. Even more so when Tom spoke and then Hunter had only made the feeling grow more intensely in the pit of her stomach. Her eyes shifted over to Gaby who chuckled. "You're gonna tell him, right?"

"Not at all, Tom. I'm quite happy to meet you guys actually." Az smiled before turning to look at Hunter. "I'm actually having the bachelorette party." She said almost shamefully. A bit hesitant at first, Az then raised her left hand up and exposed the diamond ring on her finger. Her eyes remained on the table with a forced smile. "I-I'm getting married in two weeks."

"With a Doctor!" Yasmine nearly shouted and then howled. "This girl got a damn doctor to marry her. She gon' and did herself good." Yasmine laughed.

"She got herself a papi that will love her and spoil her non stop. Non-stop trips to Hawaii, Paris and Bahamas anyone?" Gaby chimed in.

Yes, Elijah was a doctor. A neurosurgeon to be exact. She had met him while she was studying in college. She had accidentally spilled her coffee on his laptop while in a café. She'd apologized so much for his clumsiness that she hadn't even realized that she had spilt some on him as well. And he… he had been amused by her sudden actions of trying to try the laptop and eventually his lap when she started to wipe him down with napkins. Awkward and charming. That's what he called her. Since then… they had become closer and eventually had gotten engaged.

"We were wondering if you here, lovely gentleman, would like to hang out with us? Help us celebrate my girl's engagement. I promise there will be lots of booze, on us, and boobs, on us too." Yasmine laughed.

"We're hiring strippers. Male for us, girls for you three?" Gaby grinned.

Az sighed softly and smiled before looking at Hunter. "You don't have to join if you don't want to. I'd totally get it… but… I wouldn't mind having you stick around for a while… maybe catch up for old times sake?"
The smile she had on her face when he came over brought him right back to when he was just 18 years old, spending his last night with her before she left. They were able to stow themselves away in his basement, his guitar propped against the wall to sing if she wanted him to, and just have one last night together. The smile that sat on her lips was the same, but he didn’t know if the girl who held it was still the same woman. But, he hoped she was in there.

When she spoke, she seemed happy. She was doing well, doing something she seemed happy doing. She was working, she had finished school; as he knew that was something she always talked about doing. [i “That’s amazing. I’m really happy for you, Az.”] he smiled back to her, leaning against the chair in front of him.

When she patted the seat next to him, insisting he spent time with them, he obliged. How could he not, really. He pulled his seat up next to hers, almost wanting to reach out and connect with her; her hand, her thigh, something, but he held off. He didn’t know if she was seeing someone, and he didn’t want to put her in a bad position. He had recently gotten out of a relationship, dating for a little under a year before the two decided they needed space. [i “Well, there isn’t a lot to tell. I’m still here, graduated school a couple of years ago. Working in this bar as a bartender, performing the other half of the time. I’m hoping for the music thing to take off soon, but ya know. It’s rough.”]

Hunter laughed, allowing a smile to rest on his face as she mentioned his performance. [i “Thanks. I’m glad you liked it, and I’m honestly glad you heard it too. I wrote it after you left, but it’s for you.”] he spoke, his voice not too loud. Not that he was embarrassed for people to know it was for her, but embarrassed that he had to tell her he wrote her a song like this. He had always hoped he could play it for her, more intimately, but once they’re connection was broken, he didn’t think he could reach out and show her once he had finished it.

When she mentioned their friends hitting it off, he smirked. [i “Looks that way.”] he spoke, a small laugh escaping as he watched his friends, who were terrible at flirting, flirt with these girls way out of their leagues. He turned back to Azariah, running a hand through his mess of a head of hair. [i “So, back in town for long? Actually, I’m just gonna come out and ask, why are you back?”] he asked. He knew it was a bit forward, but he wanted an answer. After they stopped talking, he had assumed he’d probably never see her again. And now, she was back. She was where he had wanted her to be for the last 8 years.

As he waited for her answer, his friends made their way to the table they were all seated at. The two boys pulled up chairs to sit beside whatever girl had been claimed by them for the night. [b “This must be your friend you’ve been talking about! I’m Richie, my friend’s Tom. And it looked like you and Hunter are already pretty acquainted.”] Richie said, leaning over the table slightly to introduce himself. Richie was always all over the place, especially when he was around his friends. Hunter rolled his eyes, his friends always barging in at the right time. [+grey “Hope we aren’t putting a damper on the bachelorette party you’re having.”] Tommy spoke, having been oblivious to the whole idea that Hunter and Azariah used to be together.

[i “Bachelorette party?”] Hunter teased, [i “whose getting married?”] he asked. He started laying on his charm, which is what always happened when he was in groups. He wasn’t flirting, but always a charmer when around new people. He looked around the group, trying to solve the answer to his own question.
"It's not like you didn't enjoy the attention you got from the singer." Yasmine continued.

Az sighed. She knew Yasmine meant well for her, but sometimes she wondered if her friend was really trying to help her or create enough drama to get her into trouble. Luckily Gabriella was a bit more low key in comparison to Yasmine. If not, she'd surely have an awful time every single time they hung out.

"Well, since lame-ass daisy here doesn't wanna hang with the band, we will get more shots until you're drunk enough to have fun. Being prude won't get you anywhere hun." She winked at Az before leaving with Gaby. Az sighed in relief. At least she'd have some quiet time…

Or so she thought. Her eyes had then noticed Hunter walking over to her. Azariah had to remind herself that it was nothing. That he was nothing--no not that he was nothing. That they didn't have anything between them anymore. They were no longer together or lovers. That they were frien--- were they stilleven friends? It'd been so long that she had spoken to him… she kept her eyes on the shot she poured herself. She needed to calm down.

She took the shot just as she heard him speak her name again. She had nearly felt the alcohol come out her nose. She coughed slightly as she had forced it down her throat. She quickly turned to face him and smiled.

She tucked her hair behind her ears as he spoke about her appearance. He was being nice. As he always was… He was being just as awkward too. That alone made her feel comfortable. “I've been doing great!" She leaned back in her chair. "I finally graduated college and started to work right away as a Hospice care nurse.''

Her eyes glanced over to the empty bottle of tequila. "Oh, I think I'm good for now when it comes to the drinks." Her eyes lured back to him. "You are welcome to join us. I'm here with two of my best girl friends." She pointed over to the bar before patting the seat beside her. "Actually, I insist on you spending some time with us for a little. We could catch up… you can meet my friends and maybe you could tell me about you? How have you been? Also… I really enjoyed your performance… and the song." She chuckled. "Reminds me of the old days…"

Her eyes shifted over to her friends at the bar with the guus from the band. "Seems like your mates are interested in my girls."
As Hunter looked over again, her eyes were on his. Her beautiful eyes stared back at him with the same amount of shock he had had moments before. He was happy he had relaxed by the time their eyes connected, and he was able to prove he had made it. He was doing okay for himself, because he had remembered telling time and time again he ‘didn’t know what he was going to do without her’. She seemed as shocked to see him as he was to see her, seeing a shot glass literally fall out of her hand. She was with people he had never seen before, maybe some new friends from wherever she had ended up. But the main question on his mind was a simple one; why was she back? And better yet, why didn’t she tell him? Sure, they hadn’t talked in years, but she might have guessed he would still be kicking it here. Was there something she didn’t want to tell him, or had she forgotten about him. He, clearly, hadn’t forgotten about her.

Hunter had dated, sure, but it was hard to not compare people to his first love. He had a couple of long term relationships, some flings too; but nothing felt as solid as he did when him and Azariah were together. Very much in love, he thought. When she had mentioned leaving and breaking up, he acted pretty cool about it. He only did that to prevent having an outburst about how crazy he thought the idea was. He knew she was going away, and he had been prepared to follow her, or do something long distance. But when she brought it up, he had no choice but to agree. He didn’t want the bad blood between them, but it didn’t stop them from discontinuing contact.

As the song ended, applause rapped through the bar, Hunter giving a smile and a wave out. He really hadn’t been paying attention to Az, but soon there was someone who was almost thrown at the stage. He quickly made his way, reaching his hand down. [i “Oh god, are you alright?”] he asked. Seeing the hair, he knew it could be only one person. As her face met his, he could only smile. She was even more perfect up close. He could see some girls behind her, smiles on their faces as well. As he was about to bend down and help her, say something to her, she was up and began. The things leaving her mouth were quick and it was cute to see her so flustered. He definitely chuckled at her joke about breaking a leg and was sad to see her leave. He wanted to talk to her, and off she was. She was still in the bar, and that meant he could catch her later. He was mainly happy she heard the song, her song.

Richie, his guitarist and best friend, came up to him as they were adjusting levels.
[b “Was that…”]
[i “Yeah...”]
[b “Did you know…?”]
[i “Would I have acted like an idiot if I had?”]
[b “Are you…”]
[i “Nervous as fuck, yes.”]
Richie and Hunter knew each other too well at this point, so unfinished questions were common. Both Tommy and Richie, friends from college, knew of Az from Hunter’s countless stories about her. But seeing her, you could feel the tension between the two of them, even with their short encounter.

After playing a couple of more original songs of theirs, songs to get up and dance to, he switched over and played some covers of a few favorites or a bit heavier versions of pop songs. They weren’t playing heavy metal, but something a bit more pop punk to get the crowd up and moving. Once his time was over and they would soon switch to a new band or DJ for the night. The band would usually hang around, as Dom basically offered them an open bar for the rest of the night, and then only paid them when the bar closed. It was his way of making Hunter help close before he got his money. He also couldn’t say much, as he gave him a job and a stage to sing on.

Once the stage was clear, Hunter was dead set on finding Azariah. After grabbing a beer, he scanned the bar as he leaned against the countertop, taking a swig of the drink. [i “Man, where is she?”] Hunter spoke to himself, but enough for Richie and Tommy, who were next to him, to hear. [b “I dunno man, would she leave?”] Richie asked, looking around. [+grey “Maybe she’s in the bathroom or something. Look, her friends are over there.”] Tommy spoke. [+grey “I know Az is off limits, but…”]. [i “You can hit on her friends, yes.”]. The two boys gave him a handshake before heading over, the two boys getting their flirt on with the two women at the table.

As he took another sip of his beer, his eyes did set on Az. She was sitting at a table alone, the girls further down on the bar, probably grabbing drinks. He headed over, hoping she wouldn’t be nervous around him if it was just the two of them. [i “Hey Az.”] he spoke softly, as not to spook her. [i “I just wanted to say hi. I mean, like more than that. I mean…”] he started, now he was a bumbling mess. [i “Sorry, just...it’s really nice to see you. You look amazing.”] he spoke, rubbing the back of his neck awkwardly, an awkward smile on his lips as well. [i “H-how have you been? It’s been a long time.”] he asked, putting a hand down on the back of one of the chairs at the table, using it to keep himself upright. He took another swig of his beer, before looking at her. [i “Oh my, do you want a drink or anything..”] he asked, seeing the couple of bottles on the table, [i “Unless you’re satisfied with those.”] he asked, pointing to the liquor with a slight chuckle. He wasn’t in tune with her drinking habits, as they maybe snuck a beer or two in high school together.

Hunter didn’t want to sit down, invade her space without her saying so. She might want nothing to do with her, but at least wanted to shoot his shot. He had no idea of her relationship status, and would even be okay with just reconnecting. If she wasn’t up for even reconnecting, he’d respect it. But, seeing her again brought a million things back into his head from the past. He wanted to catch up, take her out to her favorite place and just talk for hours like they used to. He would still see her mother at the store or something, always making a point to say hi and check in. He really did just miss [i her].