After school, Cee drove straight to the one big department store in town, which was just a few streets away from my house. We hustled down the sidewalk and under the black and white striped awning of the store.
"What do you think of this one?" Cee asked holding a satin pink cowl neck top to her chest.
"That would look good on you." I encouraged her.
"What about this one?" She held another one with a ruched front and puff sleeves.
"Umm..." I thought, "Not sure about this one, but you should try it out." I suggested.
Cee found a few things to try on and went inside the dressing room. Meanwhile, I found a few things for myself.
A few minutes later, Cee came out of the dressing room wearing the satin pink top.
"You look stunning! " I complimented.
She stood in front of the three way mirror and appraised herself. It really suited her, accentuating her curves. Cee have a beautiful body, with slight curves and a thin waist. The kind of figure that most of the girls would die for. Whereas I am a few inches taller than her and have a lean body which was close to skinny. There have been days when our friendship was the only thing standing in the way of my jealousy.
We tried a few things on and critiqued each other on what to get our hand's on. Then we headed over to the shoes and accessories section. Cee found a pair of ankle strap heels.
"So when is Grace coming back?" She held her leg out, twisting her ankle to get a better view.
"She's out for two weeks! " I replied as I wandered over to the wall of perfumes.
I was contemplating over perfumes when I felt a familiar presence nearby. It felt like someone had dropped ice down the back of my shirt. On the other side of the plate-glass window, I saw a black sedan. The same black sedan that has chased me last night. I froze on my spot and stood immobile for a whole minute. Either it is the same car or my mind was again playing tricks on me.
I had two options, tell Cee about the car chase and leave the store immediately or call 911. I decided to choose the latter.
"Kat?" Cee' voice pulled me out of my thoughts. "Are you even listening to me? "
"Sorry... What did you say?" My voice cracked. Whether she noticed it or not, but I had began to panic.
"What's up with you? You look alarmed! "
"No I'm fine." I looked outside again. The sedan was missing from the spot where it was parked. "I... just zoned out... What were you saying?"
"I was saying that, Lucas and Zach are going hiking in the forest park the next weekend. Zach asked me if you and I wanna tag along."
"What!" I was startled by her statement.
"I told you everything I had to, don't know how I can explain further. " She frowned.
I glanced outside the window one last time, there was no trace of sedan outside. Either the sedan was actually there or I have imagined it being there. But I was relieved ... for now. I sighed and turned back to Cee.
"I don't think I can go out next weekend, you guys should go." It was an excuse. The thing is as long as all those unrealistic things are in the picture, fun was out of question. Also I didn't quite like the idea of hanging out with Zach and Lucas. We didn't know them and Lucas has already raised my suspicions about him being the person outside my window, who knows if he was the one with the black sedan.
The thought made me shiver.
"Come on Kat! " She said, "We finally get to do something, and you're saying no. You know my mom would never let me go alone. "
"Fine... but I'm not sure about that." I replied curtly.
"Don't worry, I'll make sure that your maybe becomes a certain thing by next week." She winked and took out the heels she was trying. "I'll get these as well."
Shopping didn't take much time. After an hour and thirty minutes of rummaging, complimenting and returning the rejects to their racks, we sauntered over to Bob's diner down the street.
The restaurant was intimate and elegant. A dimly lit space filled with two seater tables, a piano bar and a huge fishtank with angelfish curiously swimming back and forth. We sat in a small booth and a waiter came over to get our orders.
"Two chimis and loaded fries!" Cee began without consulting the menu.
He scribbled on his notepad and then turned towards me.
"One hamburger" I said.
"Anything else?" He asked.
"We'll let you know." Cee spoke.
After our waiter left, I said, "So when did you plan the hiking thing with Zach?"
"Today."She paused, "We were just talking and he invited us so I said yes." She took a sip of water from the glass, "Hanging out with them is not a bad idea, after all we don't have dates for the spring fling yet!"
"I don't like the idea of where this is going. "
She chuckled, "Relax babes, you just get tensed whenever I mention guys and dates."
I wasn't sure if the cause of my concern was guys and dates. It was more than that. I was still thinking about what Lucas said in biology today. How did he knew about the someone by my window or was it just a guess. It was too accurate to be a simple guess.
"I don't quite appreciate the idea of hanging out with Zach and Lucas. Zach is quite cheerful and sweet but on the other hand Lucas... he is a total asshole. He sure knows how to get on my nerves." I ranted.
"Did something happen again after that biology incident?" Her question sounded concerning but I can sense that she was holding back a laugh.
"Nevermind." I said, "Maybe I overthink too much! " That wasn't entirely true.
I can't explain Cee about the things that have been happening. I can't tell her about how dubious I have become of Lucas. There was something different about him. He has a magnetic aura, that has drawn my attention since day one. And for some reason or another, I found him intimidating, right from the start. He was trouble and I already had enough.
A minute later, our waiter came up with our food.
"By the way, I won't mind dating Zach." Cee confessed.
"I knew it. " I laughed.
"I mean he's a real nice, sweet guy" She paused to take a bite, "and I really can't ignore the fact that he's super handsome." She almost sang the last part.
"That's true. Don't you think you and Zach should go alone on hiking or somewhere else?" I suggested, hoping it would be my escape. "I and Lucas might be the sidekicks!"
"You clever fox" She scrunched her nose, "I know you're trying to dodge this" She said, "But I won't let you. You're coming and that's final. No buts and maybes" She laughed.
I laughed along with her. Cee and I had been best friends since we were kids. We both had a bond that we swore was long before we even knew each other. There were no secrets between us. Those unexplainable events won't count.
"Kat! " She said, "Lucas isn't a bad guy either." She meant it, it was all written on her face.
I looked at her in disbelief. I can't believe that out of all the people, Cee was saying this.
"He was really worried about you yesterday,
when you accidentally locked yourself in the toilet. He asked me if you were having some real life problems or something."
Why would Lucas be acting like a genuine person all of a sudden. It threw me off on so many levels. Every time he's with me, he would act like a total jerk and make mean comments. Why would he act all nice with Cee.
"Apart from his constant bugging, I have no problems!" I replied curtly, hiding the fact that I had problems. But there was no use explaining unexplainable things.
"Are you not paying attention" Cee smirked, "He's definitely into you and is trying to single you out." Cee replied, a smile playing on her lips.
Single me out... bullshit. He freaks me out to an extent that I want to run away from him screaming danger.
"Okay... " I straightened and shifted forward in my seat, " You cannot just co-relate those rom-coms you read with some real life scenario. If there was something, he would have said it by now." Mature. Good.
"Kat, you have no idea... " She smiled, "When someone drops a hint, you have to take it."
"I believe he's a straight forward person."
"Damn... you already know so much about him" She teased again.
"Not this again." I rolled my eyes.
Our conversation continued over food. Cee continued teasing me with Lucas and jabbered on about Zach. When we were done, we parted our ways. Cee intended on giving me a ride but my house was just a few streets away, so I preferred to walk.