Hold Still
there won’t be anything new between us ever again.
    So when I get back to my house, I lock my room door even though I’m the only one home, take Ingrid’s journal out, and just hold it for a little while. I look at the drawing on the first page again. And then I put the journal back. I’m going to try to make her last.

15
    After dinner, I climb into the backseat of my car with my laptop. I push in Davey’s mix tape, but I keep the volume low so I can concentrate. I’m thinking of ways to start my English paper.
    I type, Music is a powerful way for people to express themselves. Then I delete it. I try again: Songs can be important ways of remembering certain moments in people’s lives. That’s closer to what I’m trying to say, but it isn’t exactly right yet. I shut my computer. A girl plays her guitar, sings earnestly, and I crank open the moon roof, sink lower on the seat, look up at the sky, and listen.
    When the song is over, I turn the tape off, and try again. There is an indescribable feeling that comes from being desperately in love with a song.
    I read the sentence over. I keep writing, trying to feel the best night of my life over again.
    Ingrid and I had stood in front of her bathroom mirror, concentrating. The counter was cluttered with little makeup containers and bobby pins and hair goop.
    We are so hot, Ingrid said.
    I nodded, slowly, watching my face as it moved up and down. My hair was shiny and straight and long, parted down the middle. Ingrid had put this deep green, glittery eye shadow on me and it made my eyes look amber instead of just brown. She had pinned her blond curls back messily, and was wearing red lipstick that made her look older and kind of sophisticated.
    Yeah, I said. We look really good .
    We look amazing .
    What it was, was that we complemented each other. We just fit in this way that made strangers ask us if we were sisters, even though her hair was blond and curly and mine was straight and dark. Even though her eyes were blue and mine were brown. Maybe it was the way we acted, or spoke, or just moved . The way we would look at something and both have the same thought at the same moment, and turn to each other at the same time and start to say the same thing.
    Okay, Ingrid said. Hold still. She put pink lip gloss on my mouth with this little wand thing, and I licked my finger and wiped off a speck of mascara that had gotten on her cheek.
    We climbed into the back of Ingrid’s parents’ SUV, and Ingrid’s mom, Susan, looked at our reflection in the rearview mirror.
    You two look great, she said. In the mirror, I could see that she was smiling. Mitch, Ingrid’s dad, turned in his seat to see us.
    Look at you two. What a sight. Which I think was his way of saying he thought we looked good, too.
    Ingrid’s brother, Davey, and his girlfriend, Amanda, had just gotten engaged, and they were throwing a huge party at a restaurant near their apartment to celebrate. Ingrid’s parents had Davey ten years before they had her. She always liked to say that she was a mistake, but Susan and Mitch never admitted it. All the people at the party would be older, but that didn’t matter. We still got to dress up and look forward to something. We still got to get out of Los Cerros for a night.
    Mitch and Susan dropped us off in front so that we wouldn’t have to drive around with them, searching for parking for an hour. We found Davey and Amanda inside the restaurant, smiling and looking so happy like they always did.
    After we had talked with them for a while, we found a table and ate all these small dishes of fancy food. The lights dimmed and the music got louder, and everyone got up and started to dance. All of Amanda and Davey’s friends were beautiful, but for once I felt beautiful, too. I got up and walked out into the middle of them, wearing my black V-neck sweater and the tight maroon pants I got from the mall. Ingrid followed me in her yellow dress and brown boots. It felt good to be

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