The sun was just starting to rise and Maya and Josh walked as the darkness faded from the bedroom window and the dull glow of a winter morning started to creep in.
"Do you find it kind of wierd that we just spent half the night having sex at my dads house?" Maya asked, not able to keep the question in once it had popped into her head.
"I didn't until you said something. So thanks for that. I'm thoroughly creeped out" Josh responded, giving a little shiver.
"Ha. Then you definitely don't want to know where those condoms came from"
"Oh god" Josh half growned, squeezing his eyes closed.
"Please stop talking about your father facilitating our sex life" Maya couldn't help but let out a belly laugh but stopped when she heard her own stomach rumble slightly.
"Remember when you said that chivalry isn't dead?" Maya asked carefully. Her head was rested against the bare skin of Josh's chest, and she could hear his heartbeat.
"What do you want?" He asked, pretending to be exasperated.
"The leftovers. Please!" She begged, her mind swimming with thoughts of lo mein noodles and spicy ginger beef.
"Fine" Josh huffed, pushing her playfully off of him, sitting up and pulling on a pair of sweatpants that were on the floor next to the bed.
He padded off barefoot across the apartment and towards the kitchen. Maya also sat up in bed, pulling the comforter up over her chest and tucking them under her armpit, ready for the delivery of her makeshift breakfast.
Josh reappeared, the take out boxes stacked one on top of the other balanced in his hands.
"Delivery" he announced, placing the boxes on the bed and climbing back in beside her.
"Bless you" she said gratefully, pulling a container towards her and cracking the box open.
Maya's phone began to buzz on it's place on her bedside table. She reached over and unplugged it, thinking it must be Riley or maybe even her dad. She answered the call without thinking to check.
"Mayyyyyyaaaa!" Sashsas' too loud voice pierced her ear. She pulled her phone back from her ear and glanced at the time. It was just past 5 am.
"Woah, what are you doing up this early?"
" I just got in. You wouldn't believe the party you missed last night. There was this guy-"
"Easy Killer. You haven't been to bed yet?"
" No," Sasha admitted, a little guilty but mostly overflowing with giddiness.
Josh looked over at her, half an egg roll hanging out of his mouth, confused about who she might be talking to so early in the morning.
"Go to sleep. I'll see you tomorrow"
" You're not coming home today? You have to come out with us tonight!" Maya's immediate thought was that she was already home, and that the last thing she really wanted to do was go back to school, put on a full face of makeup and bounce around to a few different clubs until they dragged themselves back to their dorm at 3 in the morning.
"Next week" Maya promised. She could hear Sasha give a huff on the other side of the phone.
"Whatever" and then the phone went dead.
Maya clicked her screen off and tossed it to the end of the bed, reaching out and pulling a container of leftovers towards her.
"Who was that?" Josh asked offhandedly, between bites of coconut shrimp.
" A very drunk, slightly pissed off Sasha" Maya explained, shoveling orange chicken into her mouth.
It looked to Maya like Josh wanted to say something, but was holding back.
" What?" she pressed, nuding him in the ribs with her elbow. Josh considered what he wanted to say for a few more seconds before he spoke.
" It seems like Sasha parties a lot" Maya considered that for a second and then nodded.
"Yeah I guess she does, or we do. So do a lot of people on our floor"
A lot of the freshmen, who were just getting their first taste of freedom all went out a lot. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights were dedicated to what clubs they could get into and who could score a few bottles for the pregame.
But it was true that Sasha never missed a chance to go out, even if it meant going out late on a tuesday night and being too hungover to go to class the next day.
"And you go out with her a lot"
Maya nodded. It was true, she did go along with Sasha most of the time, even when she would have prefered to stay home. Maya didn't like to think about it much, but she didn't really have many friends. She'd spent most of her life wrapped up in Riley and their little sisterhood of two, and had never really gotten close to anyone else. So with Riley so far away, Maya had kind of clung to Sasha. They had things in common and got along well. So when Sasha wanted to go out, Maya went out.
"Which is totally cool" Josh continued quickly, clearly not wanting to come off as if she was lecturing her, " but I think I know you pretty well and it doesn't seem like the type of thing you'd want to do all the time"
This was also true. Maya did like to go out and dance from time to time. She liked going to see bands and she didn't mind getting dressed up from time to time but there was something a little tedious about doing the same thing every weekend, going to crowded clubs and coming home coated in sweat, and not only her own, and she hated having to slip away from the grasp of grabby guys who wanted to dance with her when all she was trying to do was scream the lyrics to 90's pop songs and dance around with Sasha.
There was a part of Maya that knew she only put up with it because she didn't want to lose her friendship with Sasha, and there was a lot she would do for her friends.
"It can be a bit much," Maya confided. She wouldn't mind going out once or twice a week, rather than the three to four that had become their normal.
"It wasn't like this before," Maya quickly explained. " She just broke up with her boyfriend in December, so she's been on a bit of a bender"
"I get that. It just that you're already spreading yourself a little thin"
"Nothing thin about me" Maya joked, poking her stomach in a self deprecating manner.
"Stop" Josh said seriously, catching the hand that she'd used to poke herself and holding it. Maya rolled her eyes at him. Josh brought her hand to his lips and kissed it before fixing her with a serious look.
" I'll talk to Sasha," Maya promised.
"Now. Coffee." Maya pronounced, pulling her hands back and jumping out of bed, heading in the direction of the kitchen and the coffee pot.
"Ouch that's hot!" Maya yipped as she pulled the baking sheet out of the oven and the heat radiated through the dish towel she had been using as an oven mitt.
It was a little past seven in the morning when Maya had decided the thing that they needed to go with their coffee was cookies. She'd pulled down the one raggedy cook book in the apartment and set to work. It would have probably been quicker and easier to pull up a recipe from pinterest, but there was something about flipping through the pages of the red and white checkered betty crocker book and dog earing the correct page.
Josh sat at the kitchen table and kept her company as she flitted around the small space, mixing dry ingredients in a bowel and beating eggs together with softened butter and sugar.
Maya quickly slid the pan onto the cooling rack and tossed the scorched towel in the direction of the sink.
"They smell awesome," Josh mused, watching as Maya examined the cookies she had just pulled from the oven.
"Call me suzy homemaker" Maya joked, poking a toothpick into the centre of one of the cookies to check if they were done. Satisfied with the cookies, she lifted them from the pan and into the cooling rack. She shifted a few onto a plate, placed it down in the centre of the kitchen table and plopped down across from Josh.
"Ah hot!" Maya hissed as the bite of cookie she put into her mouth scorched her tongue.
"What did you expect?" Josh asked jokingly. " You just took them out of the oven".
"Worth it," Maya said between bites of her stupidly hot cookie. They had turned out pretty much perfect, and the melty chocolate was worth the minor burns.
Josh blew on his own cookie before taking a measured bite.
"So good" Josh confirmed, taking another bite. Maya broke off a piece of her cookie and tried dunking it in her coffee. A tiny fraction of the baked good broke off into her cup, but the part that actually made it back to her mouth was delicious.
Maya's bedroom door opened, and both Josh and Maya turned confused and a little startled. Hudson, who had been fast asleep on the couch, jumped to his feet and let out his best attempt at a menacing bark.
"I thought I smelled cookies!" Riley said excitedly, hurrying across the apartment and helping herself to a cookie.
Riley must have come up the fire escape and let herself in through Maya's windows.
"What are you? A sniffer dog?" Maya joked, poking Rileys leg with her toe under the table.
" I have a sense for these things"
"Pretty risky of you to just waltz right in here. How did you know we weren't going to be naked?" Maya teased. Riley pantomimed gagging.
"Please. I'm trying to eat"
"You left Lucus downstairs to fend for himself with your parents?" Josh asked, breaking another cookie in half and shoving it in his mouth.
"He's still out cold. He's a little jetlagged. It's like 5 am or something in Austin"
"How long is he staying?" Riley shrugged.
" He's supposed to be going to stay with his grandparents at some point. Maybe another night? I know we've been apart for so long, and we've been through so much, but I still need space you know?"
"Maybe we could go on a double date this week. Not that Lucas and I are dating. At all. More like a group hang out where certian members of the group have had sex with certian other members of the group. What i'm trying to say is that we should all do something. Farkle is going to be home on Monday. We could all get dinner or see a movie or something"
"That sounds fun!" Maya said encouragingly, although she secretly thought that hanging out with Riley and Lucas might be extremely awkward.
"Great! I should get back downstairs before Lucas wakes up" Riley got to her feet, took a quick drink of Maya's coffee, swiped a few cookies from the cooling rack and headed back in the direction of Maya's bedroom.
"Riles! Why don't you just use the front door?"
"Oh right! I forgot about that"