Moment's Hesitation

Story by Sparrow Wolfess on SoFurry

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Casey walks down the empty streets of her town as the stars above twinkle in the silence of the navy blue skies. Looking down at her converse sneakers, she can't help but think about Julia. The entire situation stayed in her head like a dream, playing over and over again like a movie.

The music is loud; every bass line of the song playing sends vibrations throughout the entire house, shaking tables lightly and causing ripples to appear in everyone's drinks. Casey plops down onto the sofa, panting hard, laughing and spilling her drink. Her short, black hair shags over her eyes. Wiping her brow, she clears the sweat away from her green eyes before laying her head back, catching her breath.

"Yo, you alright down there?" a red haired girl laughs, sipping from her red plastic cup.

Casey looks up with slightly blurred vision, "Haha, y-yo! Haha, yeah I'm good. I'm doin' sweet."

"You... my friend... are d-r-u-n-k!" the red haired girl giggles, plopping down on the sofa next to Casey.

"Nah, this is Sprite! Hey, what's your name, girl?" Casey asks, her voice reaching over the music.

"I'm Julia," the red haired girl responds, "You know the host here?"

"Haha, yeah, we go way back. I'm Casey."

The girls talk for hours, exchanging Skype names and Facebook information. All goes well and everyone has a wonderful time, but then Julia reveals something a bit personal.

"Hey, do you wanna... maybe... go outside and get some air?" Julia asks, "We can talk a little more."

"Yeah!" Casey says, standing and brushing off her jeans, running a hand through her short, shaggy hair, "Let's go out on the porch."

"What?" Julia calls over the loud music.

"I said," Casey says a bit louder, a bit of a laugh in her speech, "Let's go out on the porch!"

"Oh! Okay!" Julia says. She follows Casey out to the front porch of the house and closes the door. She joins Casey's side, sitting on the steps with her drink in her hands. She looks down at her drink and soon her smile fades away.

"Whoa what's wrong?" Casey asks.

"It's nothing," Julia says, painting a smile on her face, "Just some stuff going on at home."

"Yeah? We've all been there," Casey says, taking a refreshing swig of her citrus soda.

"Well... maybe. My mom... she found out I'm bisexual, so she's kind of... sour... toward me." Julia explains.

Casey's eyes widen as she holds the fizzing liquid in her mouth. She's bisexual? Maybe I can ask her... like... how to know if you are or something. Maybe I'm not the only one who kinda likes... girls. "Oh."

"Oh?" Julia smiles.

"Well, I'm... not sure what to say, really."

Julia smiles and shrugs, "Most people aren't. But uh... if you have questions or something, I'm totally open to answer and stuff."

Casey smiles, feeling something she hadn't felt for a long, long time. Her stomach begins to flutter the more she hears Julia's voice. Looking at her long, curly red hair makes the fluttering even worse. When her hazel eyes dart in Casey's direction, Casey can feel her face heating up, her cheeks tingling. If it were daytime, surely Julia might notice Casey blushing in her direction.

"So uh... what's your mom's problem anyway?" Casey asks.

"She's_super_ religious. I mean, I believe in God, too, but I'm more about equality and such." Julia explains, "I guess I'm kind of a feminist activist haha."

"Hey, nothing wrong with that," Casey smiles, "But... if I can ask... how did you come to realize that you were... you know?"

"Oh, the bi thing?" Julia smiles, "I guess I just... knew, you know? Guess it sorta clicked when I met my girlfriend."

"Oh, you have..." Casey says, her voice trailing off.

"Oh, no! Not anymore. This was in like, middle school."

"Oh," Casey laughs, feeling honestly relieved, but also confused. Do I... like her? I've never crushed on a girl, well... never had a boyfriend, either. "Well, uh, I bet she was a super lucky girl."

The night drags on. Casey and Julia get along pretty well for having just met. It raises the question in Casey's mind, however. She asks herself why she can't stop thinking about that lovely red hair. Even Julia's perfume tickles her nose for the rest of the night.

The party guests all start slowly leaving, a large party mess of cups and snacks in their wake. Casey stays behind to help her friend, the party host, Ron clean the place up. Everyone's gone - including Julia.

"What's on your mind, dude?" Ron asks, clearing the coffee table of cigarette butts and snack crumbs.

"Ah, it's nothing," Casey says, her voice droll and empty, a bit flighty. "Just some stuff goin' on, and whatever."

"Casey, you alright? Did something happen during the party?" Ron asks, setting a trash bag next to the coffee table. "Who did what?"

"No, no... was just... I uh, met someone." Casey says, smiling, tossing red plastic cups into a plastic bag, "She's uh..."

"Wait,she? You met a girl?" Ron chuckles.

"Yeah... so? We're just friends..." Casey says, blushing.

"Your face is redder than a lobster's ass. You... like her? That way?"

"No! I... dunno. I learned she's bi... and... well, I never really thought about sexuality stuff." Casey grumbles.

"You're not flaking out, are ya?" Ron asks, "Look, if you like a girl that way, so what? Maybe you could experiment."

"Experiment. Like... sex?" Casey asks.

"Naw, there's other ways. Like uh... how do you feel around her?" Ron asks, "You can experiment by, like, kissin' or just going out on a date or something."

"Around her? I feel... light." Casey explains, "I feel like... floaty and high, but not crazy high. The kind of high I can control, you know? It's hard to explain. My heart beats really fast and I get all nervous and I just want to look at her. Just... look at 'er."

"Sounds like you're in love, dude."

"You think so? Am I... weird?" Casey blushes.

"You're hella weird. But not for liking a girl," Ron laughs, "You got her contact stuff, right?"

"Yeah, we have Skype and whatever," Casey smiles. "It's so weird. I've always been a tomboy, but I never saw myself having a crush on a girl."

"So you admit it, it's a crush!" Ron teases.

"I... wait! Ugh, I'm... I'm going home. It's late. Thanks for the party, it was awesome!" Casey says as she stands up, dusts off her jeans and quickly heads to the door.

"Wait! You're gonna make me clean all this up myself?! Casey! Hold on!" Ron calls just as Casey closes the door, heading to her place.

The entire situation plays in her head like a movie. Over and over, she can hear Julia's laughter in hear head. God, I can't get her outta my head. I have to see her again. Hands in her pockets, Casey gets closer and closer to her own home. As she steps up her porch, slinging open her door, she sees that nobody is home. Good... no lecture tonight. I'm beat.

Casey drags her feet a bit as she walks to her bedroom, opening her bedroom door to reveal her clothing-gilded carpet and band-tee draped furniture. Plopping onto her bed, she rests her arm over her forehead. Smiling, she looks at her cellphone on her nightstand, still charging since this morning.

"1 Missed Skype Call. 1 New Video Message."

Casey flips through her smartphone and opens her Skype app, seeing that she's already gotten a video message from Julia.

The video begins with Julia in quiet room - maybe her bedroom. She smiles into the camera and moves her red hair out of her face. "Hey! Awesome party! I know you won't get this yet, but I just wanted to say hey and I'm glad we met! Hope we can hang out sometime. Looking forward to it! Haha, bye!" Julia ends the video with a cute wave and the video stops.

Casey immediately downloads the video, saving it to her phone. She smiles, putting her phone back on the nightstand and laying her head back on her pillow.

I wonder what she's doing right now? Is her mom being a cunt or something? She looked happy in the video. I should see if maybe she's okay... though she probably is okay. I should at least say thanks for hanging out. Maybe thanks for the video. I should tell her that I like her hair. We're girls, it's fine to talk about hair. Will she think I'm flirting? Am I flirting? If I Skype her now, will it be creepy? Am I bisexual, too? Maybe a lesbian or something?

Casey's mind wanders, racing with thought of Julia amidst her self-conscious paranoia. With a sigh, Casey realizes that there won't be any sleep for her tonight. Sitting up, Casey heads to her PC, turning it on and logging into Skype.

Julia is set to "away" on Skype - probably asleep at this hour. Eleven at night? Very religious mother? Odds are, Julia is in bed. Just a quick message. She left me one, after all. Won't hurt, will it?

Casey begins typing in Julia's window, "Hey Julia! I got your message. It was awesome hanging out with you - gotta do it again sometime. How about tomorrow? We can get lunch or something. I can pack a pretty mean lunch! Let me know, okay? See ya."

Casey mouses over the "send" button. Her heart slamming against her chest like a drum signaling war. Casey's hand shivers a little as she counts down from three in her head, a good ten times, before finally touching the clicker. _Come on. It's not weird! Just send it!_Casey finally clicks the button and the message is sent.

She waits for hours, looking at her Skype chat with Julia and even scrolling down her Facebook wall to check out some of her posts. There's a lot of "Share if you like" photos and quite a few posts about how homophobia is ruining our country. One of her statuses catches Casey's eye.

"I wish for once there could be some guy or girl in my life who liked me for me and didn't just want sex all the time. I'm not that kind of girl, people! I'm bisexual! I'm not a sex fiend! I'm a human! Ugh!!! - Feeling Annoyed."

The post is old, but Casey decides to like the status anyway. It dawns on her that this status was written in 2013. Two years ago. Crap! Julia's gonna think I'm some kind of stalker! Should I unlike it? Would she notice? What if she thinks I'm clingy?! I don't even know if I like girls!"

_ _ Casey calms her mind and takes a moment to reflect. She never did have a boyfriend, and she never really knew how to feel about girls dating other girls. She certainly never saw herself with a girlfriend, but she never had this feeling with anyone in her life - not even close friends.

Her thoughts are interrupted by her stomach growling. Casey sighs. Oh, I guess I didn't really eat at the party, did I? I just had a bunch of soda. I should eat something, but I don't feel hungry.

Casey leaves her room and heads to the kitchen, ripping open the refrigerator door and taking out some lunchmeat and butter, setting them on the counter. She opens the bread box and takes out the wheat bread, preparing herself a sandwich.

Should I just ask her out on the date to see how I feel? I don't want to just use her or something. What if I do have a crush on her but she doesn't like me the same way? What if we did somehow end up dating, and her mother disowned her or something because I'm a lesbian?"

_ _ "I'm a lesbian?" Casey asks herself, looking down and realizing that while lost in thought, she had been buttering a piece of bread with nothing but air, tearing the piece of bread apart. "Oh, shit..."

Casey takes the ripped up bread to the trash can and plops it in, uncaring about the issue of waste. Returning to the counter, she feels her stomach flutter again. Saying it out loud felt right, but not just any kind of right. Truly right, as if she had been honest with herself for the first time. Casey prepares her sandwich and cuts it in half.

"Lesbian..." Casey mutters, "I've never really been attracted to guys," she whispers to herself. I've never had a boyfriend. Never really wanted one. But I want... Julia.

Julia lays in bed at home, listening to her mother cry in her bedroom, praying to God about "curing" her. Julia sighs and closes her eyes, feeling lower than low. The hopelessness in her heart is something she'd never felt before, but refocusing her thoughts on Casey seems to make her crack a small smile.

"God, please... I'm begging you. Cure my little girl! Take the devil's influence out of her heart and... make her normal, Lord! Allow her to see your light!" Julia hears her mother say through the walls.

Julia smiles still, remembering a few jokes Casey had told at the party, remembering Casey's laugh and how her hair was scruffy, how careless she seemed. Julia remembers the porch, how they sat and talked, and how Casey listened. It was then that Julia realized that she had indeed taken an interest.

Hey mom, I went to a party tonight. I didn't go to Kim's to help babysit like I said. I went to a party full of boys and didn't like a single one. Mom, I fell for a girl today. How do you like that? Pray the gay away if you want, Mom but I met a girl. Casey... she listened to me and... made me feel good about myself. So there.

Julia smiles as she rolls over in her bed, mouthing off to her mother in her head as she falls asleep, Casey being the last person on her mind.

In the morning, Julia wakes up and stretches, fluffing out her long, red hair as sits up and places her feet on the floor. For the first time in a long, long while, Julia greets the day with a smile. Stepping away from her bed, Julia smiles at herself in the mirror and sighs. Looking over to her laptop, she can see Skype flashing. She heads over to the chat window and sees a message from Casey.

Reading the message, Julia's face lights up, smiling wider. She immediately responds.

"Yeah, like, today? I'd love to! Meet me in front of the library - the new one being built, okay? Around... 2?"

Casey jumps awake at her PC as the alert sounds.

"Gaagh! Oh... God..." Casey jumps, rubbing her eyes and yawning. She allows her eyes to adjust on her screen, seeing that Julia responded to her invitation. "Oh, shit."

Casey feels light headed - Julia has accepted.

"It's a date!" Casey sends. Shit, wait... what if she really thinks it's a date? Is it a date? I'd like for it to be... but I don't want to offend her if it turns out I'm not gay... ugh, what do I say? "I'm glad we decided to be friends!" Casey sends. Shit, no! I just friend-zoned her! "Because I've been thinking about you since the party." Ugh... keep digging a hole, Casey, you're doing great...

Julia looks at her screen and can feel herself blushing. Does she like me? She seems very eager to see me. "Haha, a date, then. Well... you know what I mean." Julia says.

"Hmm... 'You know what I mean'? Sorry, Julia, I don't really... uh, okay..." Casey says aloud, beginning to type, "Yeah haha. I'll get some lunch made for then."

Julia looks to her clock - ten in the morning. More than enough time to get ready. I don't even know if she's straight or not, but... I guess if I can impress her or something I can find out?

_ _

The day seems to drag on as the girls both prepare themselves. Casey manages to finally pick out what to wear. She chooses a Nine Inch Nails tee, a blue plaid over shirt, and the jeans from last night, and of course, her canvases. Julia on the other hand decides to wear a floral mini dress with a bright green, half-sleeve over shirt that ties to close. Her shoes are simple green flats.

"Julia, where are going today?" Julia's mother asks, peering into her bedroom, "You're looking... rather girly."

"I'm going on a date," Julia says with confidence, "Well, I hope it's a date... I met Casey a few days ago."

"Casey? Oh... that sounds like a boy's name!" Julia's mother smiles happily.

"Yep, sure does," Julia smiles, walking past her mother, "Gotta go. Bye mom... I'll be home before dark."

Casey scratches her head as she looks on the kitchen counter. A note lays there, "Working late again tonight - here is money for pizza. Be safe and come home before dark this time - I'm not stupid."

Haha... damn... no getting passed mom. Casey takes her cellphone out of her pocket and sets an alarm for eight tonight. There. That's when I gotta start heading home.

Julia arrives at the library, nervous, but excited. Looking down the opposite end of the street, Julia can see Casey arriving, carrying a large lunch bag. As Casey approaches further, Julia begins to feel her stomach flutter. Casey feels it too; her stomach flutters and she can feel her face heating up again.

"Hey! You look... heh, you look really nice," Casey says shyly, "I uh, packed us a lunch, like I said!"

"What'd you bring?" Julia smiles, "I'll bet it's delicious."

"Hope you like grilled cheese and salad," Casey blushes, "We didn't have much in the house, so I kinda... just threw stuff together."

Julia leans forward and whispers, "I love grilled cheese," she backs away, "and a nice salad on a day like today is perfect, Casey, thank you!"

Having found the perfect spot beneath a tall oak tree, the girls sit beneath, talking and laughing as if they had known each other for years. Julia explains that she heard her mother praying last night for a "cure" to being gay, and how she didn't really feel upset by it this time.

"That's great!" Casey says, "I mean, that you didn't feel bad. You should never be sorry for who you are, you know? I think you're perfect." Casey smiles, soon blushing, "Ah... I mean... y-you know..."

"Casey... do you maybe... like me?" Julia asks.

Casey's life pauses, time stops, and her head spins. I don't know. Do I... Do I like you like... do I like girls?

_ _

_ _ Julia leans closer to Casey, "Casey, I've never really felt this comfortable with someone before. I... think I really like you. But... if you're straight, I totally understand. I just think you should know."

Casey remains silent, watching Julia lean ever closer, very slowly. Is... she going to... should I just... In Casey's mind, a million years have passed. The butterflies in her stomach churn and flutter with madness, high on some kind of drug that they sapped from her brain, no, from her heart.

"I can understand if... if you don't..." Julia stammers, blushing immediately when she realizes that Casey's lips are pressed against hers in a deep, sincere, heartwarming kiss. Casey gasps as she backs off quickly, embarrassed and shy.

" me." Julia finishes, blushing just as badly.

"Julia... I'm a lesbian." Casey says. For once in her life, the question that haunted her and prevented her from sharing her feelings with others had finally been put to rest. The reason she never really took interest in boys became clear, and the feelings she has for Julia finally makes sense.

Julia smiles and blushes, "Glad to hear it."

Julia leans in one more time and kisses back, gently placing her hand on Casey's jawline. Soon, the two embrace, kissing gently and sharing their hearts, once two separate beating muscles now bound together as one, life-giving soul.

"You know what this means, though..." Julia says.

"What's that?"

"You'll have to eventually meet my mother."

"Oh..." Casey laughs sheepishly as Julia laughs at her blushing face, laying her head on Casey's shoulder, taking a bite of her salad. "That'll go over well, won't it?"

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