>>32762570>"But something changed?">Your eyes flickered open at the change in Maud's tone as her fingers circled your wrist.>It was quieter. >Softer. >You hesitated, but your head turned slowly and you met her eyes.>This close, you could tell she was tired.>Dark circles under her eyes weren't quite hidden by her makeup.>Half-lidded, you might have mistaken her look for seductive if you weren't convinced she was struggling to keep her eyes open.
"Yeah.">You'd never seen Maud as anything but her stoic self.>What could possibly have left the girl that broke rocks eight hours a day in this condition?
"Little things I never really noticed, like how she was always doing her best to make sure everyone had fun.">Maud's lips twitched up ever so slightly, and you shared a timid smile with her.
"As time went on, the stuff I thought was annoying, it just stopped bothering me.">Your head turned back to the ceiling, eyes adjusted to the dark room.>Picking out the barely glowing constellation of your birth, made up of faded glow-in-the-dark star stickers.>You cracked a slow grin as you gestured up with your free hand.
"See those? Pinkie put them up as a birthday surprise the year I moved here. She never told me how she knew what day my birthday was on, but that didn't bother me.">Maud shifted at your side, and you assumed it was to look up at the stars.>"She's important to you.">Your hand came up to rub your eyes as even the faint light set them to aching.
"Yeah. She really is my best friend.">You turned your head to glance at Maud again, just as her arm slid off yours to settle against your opposite side.>"Mine, too.">Well...>She was a lot closer now.>Seems she'd taken the opportunity to scooch a little closer to you.>You couldn't help a blush from bursting across your cheeks as her body slowly pressed against your side.>Looking into your eyes mere inches away, hers held a glint of despair.