The Needing for Love

September 25, 2011
By misguidedmuse, Athol, Idaho
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misguidedmuse, Athol, Idaho
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Favorite Quote:
"Dwell in possibilities."


Author's note: I worked really hard on this. I hope you like it.

Chapter One
*You Got To Be Out There. You Got To Be Somewhere. Wherever You Are I’m Waiting.*
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I sat there. Alone. In my room. Fuming. I refused to marry that man sitting downstairs in my living room.

"Please, Seirnali , I know this is sudden but please, do this for me!" My dad was begging me as I sat on the couch.

"No! Ok! No! You can’t force me to marry someone I don’t even know!" I shouted back at him. I glanced over at him. Standing at the end of the staircase looking down at his feet.

"Please Seirnali , I don’t relish the idea either but…" he faltered. I looked at him and clinched my jaw. Before he could speak again I was up in my room, sitting on my bed, fuming.

It wasn’t that I hated the guy, I just didn’t want to be forced to marry someone. I mean and at the age of 19? Considering the fact that I just turned 19 a month ago. I laid down on my bed and stared at my ceiling. I thought about why I had to marry him. Apparently, his family were very good friends with my father, and according to him, it wasn’t an arranged marriage, but a set up to see if we would work out. Of course, that didn’t make it sound any better. After Eric, my ex, and I split, I refused to even think about dating again. I laughed despite the situation.

He must be really desperate if he has to get his family to find him a girlfriend.

I heard a soft tap on my door. I ignored it.

"Can I…..uh…can I come in?"
Oh, it was him.

"Seirnali , open the damn door." My dad spoke next.

I sighed deeply and swung my legs off the bed and got up and opened the door. I rested my hand on hip and glared at them both.

"Seirnali , please," my dad spoke softly now, "just….can you give Alexander a chance?" He looked at me pleadingly. I just sighed. It was silent for a while until my mom came upstairs and broke it in two.

"Mike, for goodness sake leave the girl alone!" My mom looked at me and smiled. My mom and I got along but of course like any mother/daughter relationship it had it’s fighting. Plenty of it. My dad and I got along perfectly fine. Well, besides now of course. But my dad was always the protective one, especially since I was an only child.

"Kelly! She won’t even give him a chance!" My dad was flailing his arms in the air as she led him downstairs. Alexander stayed up stairs. Awkward.
I looked at him fully for the first time since he got here. He had really messy hair, bluish gray eyes. Tall. Pale. Gorgeous. It was obvious he hadn’t shaved for a few days, and I could tell he wasn’t about to either.

I wanted to say something but I couldn’t think of anything so instead I shut the door and went back to sit on my bed. I didn’t mean to be rude to him but, I was mad. I heard him sigh from behind the door. I decided I wouldn’t be a total b**** to him and be somewhat civil. I got back up and opened the door to find him standing the same place he was before.

"Hi." I said somewhat grudgingly. I looked up at him and he was fighting back a smile.

"Hello." He was amused. That ticked me off. He was amused at the situation?! I had had enough of it and shoved past him to go downstairs. Maybe I could talk my dad out of it… I got to the corner of the kitchen and heard them arguing. I decided I would eavesdrop and see who was on my side.

"Mike! What are you thinking?! She just got out of a relationship with Eric! And, to add, she just started acting normal! Don’t make her go through something like this again. I can’t stand to watch her when she gets as depressed as she was!!" I listened to my mom.

Yes, I had become extremely depressed after Eric and I split up but it was for good reasons. I shuddered thinking about those three long months.

"How do you know that this will go the same way? Kelly, come on, I can’t convince her alone!" He pleaded.

I stormed back up to my room and found him rifling through my bookshelf.

"What are you doing!?" I glared at him.

"Are you serious? Please tell me your not some obsessed fan like all the others." He said in his British accent as he waved my Twilight book around in the air.

"Give me that!" I ripped it out of his hands. "And for your information, I do love these books so you’re going to have to deal with that." I paused and I could tell what he was going to ask.

"And yes, I’m in love with Edward Cullen." I put the book back in its spot on the shelf.

"Lovely." He smirked as he watched me.

"Seirnali !? Can you come down here for a minute please?" I heard my dad shout from downstairs. Great. I slowly made my way downstairs and sat down on the couch in front of my parents.

"Listen. I know you don’t want to do this, but if it still isn’t working out by…June, then you can leave him and never have anything to do with him ever again. Ok?" My dad was trying to compromise with me. I thought it over. Well it was October 1st. So that would be…eight months with him. Oh Joy! I could tell this wasn’t going to end unless I agreed so I thought I would say yes and then the first chance I got, run to my house and try and see him as little as possible.

"Fine." I said glaring at them both. I watched my father’s pleading face go to relief.

"Thank you." He hugged me. Then he came down from exploring my room no doubt, and walked into the living room.

"So…" He looked at me from behind my dad. My dad let go of me and turned to face him.

"Yep! But I told her, if it still wasn’t working out still in June, she could…leave."
Alexander had this contorted, pained expression for a split second then smiled.

"Sounds good to me!"

I stood there, not really knowing what do to.

"Well, It’s getting late, you two should be heading home." My mom yawned. A few minutes later we were both outside. I was heading toward my apartment. It was only a few miles away. I didn’t drive here so my black mustang wasn’t here. I didn’t mind though. It was nice out. Then I felt someone grab the sleeve of my shirt pulling me back.

"Where are you going?" He looked at me quizzically. I was getting a little freaked out.

"My apartment…" I drawled. I tried to get his fingers off my arm but it was futile.

"Well, I could drive you." He was half smiling.

"No, I can walk." I started trying to pry his fingers. Instead, he started dragging me to his car.

"What are you doing?! Let me go!!" I started shouting at him. We got to his car and he opened the door for me. I refused to get in. The moment he let me go I would run. He raised an eyebrow, then sighed and pushed me in and shut the door. I sat there with my arms crossed as he started the car.

"Calm down. Jeez." How was I supposed to be calm when he was basically kidnapping me?! I just turned my head and looked out the window. Later, realization dawned on me that he had passed my apartment a while ago.

"What are you doing?! You passed my house miles ago!" I was bewildered.

"Yeah. I know. I’m taking you to my house." He kept his eyes on the road.

"So you are kidnapping me!?" I asked.

"No. I’m not kidnapping you now would you please calm down?" He shook his head and I continued looking out the window.

Chapter Two

*Because There Are These Nights Where I Sing Myself To Sleep. And I’m Hoping My Dreams Bring You Close To Me. Are You Listening?*

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By the time I got to his house I had counted 74 trees, 55 street lamps, 3 garbage cans, 1 dog, 4 cats, and 6 restaurants. I was still looking out the window when he had stopped the car, counting the trees around his house. I could feel him looking at me. I turned my head and looked at him.

“What are you doing?” He asked concerned for my mental health.

“Counting the trees.” I said faking a coy smile. He frowned.

“Well, are you coming in, or are you planning on sleeping out in the car?” He asked blankly.

“I know, why don’t you sleep in the car and I will sleep inside?” Alright. I’ll admit it. I was being a jerk. I felt kind of bad but I pushed it away.

“Tempting.” That’s all he said and then he got out.
What? What the hell was that?!

He disappeared in the darkness. Was he seriously going to leave me in the car? Before I could think of anything else my door was swung open and he pulled me out and threw me over his shoulder.

“What the hell are you doing?! Put me down!!!!!” I was pounding on his back and kicking and screaming. He opened his front door and threw me down on his couch and walked into the kitchen.
I curled up into a ball and sat there in silence. He came back with a glass of water and sat down next to me and turned the TV on and started watching some stupid late night show.
What. The. Hell?
I glanced over at the clock. It was almost 11:30. I looked around. It was a nice house. Not that big, but not that small.

“You like it?” He asked not taking his eyes off the television. I just nodded and contemplated my escape. It was really quiet. He wasn’t really watching the TV, just staring at it. I was going to get up and look for some window that I would be able to crawl through after he fell asleep but he spoke before I got the chance.

“Who’s Eric?” He looked away from the TV following my glance from window to window. I looked at him. Surprised that he caught that.

“Uh. He was my ex-boyfriend. I met him in high school but…” I trailed off.

“How long were you going out?”

“I don’t know, a couple years…” What was he getting at?

“Oh.” That’s all he said. He stared at the TV a bit longer then turned it off. He sat there for a few minutes then got up and looked down at me.“I’m going to bed, and just in case you were thinking of crawling out the window after I fell asleep, you can sleep in my room.” He smirked. How did he know about my window plan?

“You going to sleep out here on the couch?” I asked expecting a specific answer.

“No! I’m sleeping in my bed.” He looked shocked.

“Well, then where am I going to sleep?!” I was getting a little afraid of where this was going.

“In the bed silly. Come on.” He motioned for me to follow him. I eyed him warily before I got up and followed him from a safe distance.

I poked my head into the room that he went into. It was simple enough, a bed, a dresser, and this huge window that took up his whole wall. It had a white curtain over it though. I walked all the way in and he threw some clothes at me.

“You can sleep in those if you want to. But I mean, you don’t have to.” He eyed me up and down and raised both eyebrows and smiled at me.

Pervert.

“The bathroom’s over there.” He nodded towards the door and took his shirt off and crawled into the bed. I walked into the bathroom and tossed his clothes that he threw at me on the floor. I would just sleep in the tank top I had on under my shirt. I was wearing some shorts already so I would be fine.

I looked in the mirror and scowled. I had dark circles from my sleepless nights of crying and nightmares. I was pale with blonde hair that was curly and so I kept it up all the time. I never had it down all the way. I was decent, average looking, but that had never been good enough for me.
I sighed and took my shirt off and adjusted my tank top. I was going to brush my teeth but I didn’t want to ask him if he had another toothbrush so I just walked back out and walked to the other side of the bed closest to the giant window.

He was already asleep so I figured that I would be safe. I lifted the covers and laid on the very edge of the bed as far away from his as possible. I prayed that I wouldn’t have a nightmare like I had been having for the past three months. I closed my eyes and fell asleep immediately.

Chapter Three

*Hear Me! I’m Crying Out! I’m Ready Now! Turn My World Upside Down, Find Me!*

><

“Eric! Knock it off!”

“Come on we have been going out for a year now!” He wined as he kept trying to kiss me.

“No!”
His expression darkened as I got up and headed toward the door. He got up after me and shoved me against the wall and started kissing my neck and trying to unzip my jacket.

“Get the hell off me Eric!” I shoved him away and he walked into a bowl of water he had sitting out for his dog. I stood there expressionless as he let out a string of profanities. He got back up to me and slapped me across the face.

“Seirnali !? Seirnali ?! What’s wrong?! Wake up! Come on! Seirnali ?!”

I woke up to Alexander shaking me and then stroking me and switching back and forth. I tried to focus on what was going on and why he was freaking out. I just kind of looked at him.

“What’s wrong??” He asked concerned.

“What…?” I was confused. He frowned and wiped a tear off my face. Oh, I was crying, typical. I didn’t know why, but I would cry whenever I had that dream. I never really understood.

“Seirnali ?! What’s wrong? Why are you crying?” He shook me out of my thoughts.

“Oh. Um. Bad…a bad dream…” I lied. He didn’t look convinced.

“You want to talk about it…?”

“No. I’m fine.” I replied and slapped his hand off my arm. He looked offended at first but then he looked amused. He shrugged and rolled back to his side and fell asleep again. I looked at the clock. Two in the morning. I let out a frustrated sigh and rolled back over and looked out the window.

I woke up in the morning rather pleasantly. It was warm. I brushed the hair out of my face and put my hand back on the bed. I heard a muffled laugh and opened my eyes.

I had my head on his chest and my hand laying across his stomach. Within five seconds I gasped in shock and pushed myself off and wound up falling onto the floor. He looked over the edge at me and laughed.

“Morning!” He tried to hold back his laughing. I scowled at him got myself up off the cold floor.

“Shut up.” I muttered. He stopped laughing but his amused little smile stayed. I rolled my eyes and walked into the bathroom and did my hair. I obviously couldn’t brush my teeth so I grabbed a piece of gum from my pocket and popped it into my mouth and walked back into the room to grab my shirt.
He was still laying in bed.

“Come here.” He patted the empty space next to him. I looked at him.

“No thank you.” I retorted. He sat up and looked at me and put on a faked a hurt expression. I ignored him and picked up my shirt up. I put it on and he grabbed my elbow and pulled me on the bed and forced me to sit next to him.

“Stop touching me!!!” I kept hitting him. Frankly, after my break-up I flinched whenever anyone touched me and this was crossing the limit.

“This is nice.” He sighed.

“Yeah. Sure. Whatever. Can I go now?” I asked sharply. I had things to do today and this was not on
my agenda.

“Fine. Jeez.” He got up and walked into the bathroom. I was going to run and steal his car but I was really hungry so I snuck into the kitchen instead.

There wasn’t much of a selection so I grabbed some cereal and prayed to God he had non-expired milk in the fridge. After I sat down and started eating he walked in with a faded gray t-shirt and ripped up jeans. His hair was a mess still. I was beginning to think he never brushed it…

He watched me eating my cereal. It was nerve-racking. I finished and put my bowl in the sink and turned around but of course, he was blocking my way.

Stupid British man.

“Move.” I looked up at him. I felt so short. He just smiled and put his arms on either side of me and put his weight on the counter behind me. I was getting both pissed and freaked out. Pissed at what he was doing and freaked out about what he I might do.

I put my hands on his chest and attempted to push him away from me but it didn’t work. He inched his face closer to mine. I was seriously freaking out by now. If he was planning on kissing me I was going to punch him in the face.

“Why don’t you like me?” He finally said. I was taken back. Not expecting it.

“Uh….Well, Um…What?” I couldn’t think of anything else to really say.

“I’m just saying.” He paused and looked down at me. “Are you planning on wearing that all week?”

Oh yeah. I only had this outfit.

“No…” I replied looking down at the floor.

“Well then come on. Let’s go to your apartment and get your stuff.” He pushed himself off the counter.

“What? Why?” I was getting worried here.

“Well, you’re going to be living here, don’t you want your stuff?” He looked at me like I was mentally incompetent.

Oh, great.

Chapter 4
*I’m Lost Inside The Crowd! It’s Getting Loud! I Need You To See, I’m Screaming For You To Please Hear Me.*
~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.~.

I ended getting most of my clothes that I liked, my four books, my laptop, and a few other things. I got done putting my clothes into the dresser and stood there after I closed the drawer and sighed.

“You done?” He popped his head into the room and looked at me. I nodded in reply and he walked in.

I stayed where I was at the dresser and continued thinking. Unfortunately he had to interrupt me by putting his arms around my waist and putting his chin on my shoulder. I tensed up and grinded my teeth.

“We really have to talk about the whole ‘don’t touch me’ concept.” I said glaring at the wall.

“Why do you hate me?” He inquired again.

“I don’t hate you.” I stated apathetically.

“Then why do you freak out if I touch you?!”

“It’s not you. I do that to everyone.”

“Why?”

I thought why.

I had been crushed by Eric. He practically ruined my life. It started out fine. I loved him so much. But, he went and slowly starting ruining it.

I loved him though. The whole time. Even when he would hit and me and apologize and promise he would never do it again.

I believed him and forgave him. But he broke the promise as soon as me made it.
I could feel the pained expression on my face. I was used to it by now. I had thought about him so much I had become numb to the pain.

I was broken into a million little pieces never to be put back together again.

“I swear Abby, I’m never going to trust another guy again. I am never going to fall in love again.” I sobbed into my best friend’s shoulder.
I thought back to when I sat on her couch and cried all day. She was there with me the whole time.

I could feel him putting his finger under my chin and forcing me to look at him.

He was a pain in the ass, but then again, he was nice.

“Are you sure you don’t want to tell me?” His eyes looked pleading.

“No. I’m fine. Really. I am.” He didn’t look convinced.

I was having a hard time convincing myself lately.

“Are you sure?” He inched his face closer to mine and I could feel his breath on my cheeks. I was getting very uncomfortable.

I hadn’t had this much physical contact since, well, Eric. And I didn’t really like it then either. Mainly, I was afraid of being hurt. Both physically and emotionally. I don’t think I could take much more of either one.

“What… what are you doing?” I asked shakily. His lips were pressed against my ear by the time he spoke again.

“Nothing.” He replied calmly while I was on the brink of panic.
Then, to make matters worse, he started kissing down my neck. I was panicking now. He put his hands on my hips and softly pushed me against the dresser. I was afraid of where this would lead.

“Please. Stop.” I managed to say. He paused and looked at me apologetically.

“Sorry.”

I couldn’t tell if he meant it or not. I had lost my ability to trust people. He took his hands off my waist and backed away from me and walked out into the living room and I heard the TV being turned on.

I decided I would stay in here where I was safe. I walked over to the bed and pulled out my laptop and plugged my headphones in and slipped into my slice of peace and happiness.

I listened to my usual music. Depressing music. Or slow music that sounded sad but it really wasn’t. I pulled up a game of solitaire and zoned out not really listening to the music at all.
I thought about what just happened. Honestly, being held again was…nice. I shied away from it for six months. But, I wasn’t sure I wanted to let my guard down and have everyone hugging me, and touching me again.

I sighed in frustration and put my head in my hands.

Oh, s***. I think I like him.

Chapter 5

*I Used To Be Scared Of Letting Someone In, But It Gets So Lonely Being On My Own.*

*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^^*^*^
Ok, don’t panic. Don’t. Panic. I thought to myself, repeating it over and over in my head.

Ok, Panic.

I quietly shut my laptop and ripped out my cell phone from my pocket so that I could text Abby. But then I double thought it. She would be freaking out and screaming in happiness and that’s not what I wanted right now. I needed someone to slap some sense into me.

Instead I ran to my purse and ripped out my car keys. (He had let me bring me car here after much arguing and whining.) I calmly walked out to the living room and started toward the door.

"Where you going?"

I froze. What was I supposed to say? Oh, I think I like you so I’m going to go for a drive to clear my head. No.

"Abby wants me to go see her new kitten…"
Her new kitten? What the hell kind of excuse is that?!

"Oh. Ok then." He turned his attention back to the TV.

I ran out to my car and put the keys in the ignition and backed out of his driveway and headed toward the nearest coffee store.

I ended up in Barnes and Nobles. There wasn’t really a lot of people there so I figured I would be safe. I walked to the café part of the store and sat down in the corner.

Ok, so what’s the worst that could happen?

Well, end up falling for him, trusting him, having him break my heart, leave, and then wind up back where I was five months ago. Sitting in my bed, crying. I must have sat there for two hours trying to figure something out. I came one conclusion.

Maybe, he wouldn’t notice. Maybe he didn’t like me back. Maybe I would stop liking him once I came to my senses and I realized that this ‘set up relationship’ wasn’t going to work out.

Of course, there was the other possibilities that I didn’t really want to think about.

What if he’s just another ‘Eric’?

No.

No one, could be like Eric. I looked at my cell phone. I had been sitting here for three hours now.

God, I’m a wreck.

I figured I should head back. I mean I don’t think that he would buy the lie that I was marveling at a freaking kitten for three hours.

I got into the car and put in a CD, and turned it up as loud as it could go to drown out my thoughts.
When I got back, I walked silently back into the house to find him asleep on the couch. I was slightly relieved as I made my way back to my laptop. I threw my keys onto the nightstand and checked my email.

Nothing.

I sighed and shut it off and turned around to see a very groggy Alexander leaning against the frame of the door.

Damn he looks good. No! What am I saying?! Focus!

"Did you have fun?" He smiled.

Oh yeah. Tons. I just love thinking about all the ways my life can be even more screwed up then it already is.

"Yeah." I lied.

I walked back out into the living room and made my way into the kitchen and grabbed a glass of water and drank the whole thing in less than five seconds. I breathed slowly and walked back into the living room and sat down on the couch and watched some dumb soap opera.

He walked back in and sat next to me on the couch. He still looked tired.

How could he be tired?! He woke up, walked into the kitchen, pestered me, then watched TV, and took a nap! How could he be tired still?!

He sighed and put his arm around my shoulder and pulled me till I was leaning against his shoulder.

I stared at the wall in front of me and focused and breathing steadily.

This is going to be hard.

Chapter 6

*With No One To Talk To. And No One To Hold Me. I’m Not Always Strong. Oh, I Need You Here. Are You Listening?*

<3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3

"Eric, you really shouldn’t drink another one." I warned. He looked at the un-opened can and sighed.

"Yeah. You’re right." He set it down on the ground. He was drunk. Kind of. Not sober, but not completely drunk. I sighed and leaned back against him as we watched some old movie on TV.

"You’re really pretty today Seri’." He smiled.

"Thanks."
He tried to kiss me but I pushed him away. I wasn’t much for that kind of physical contact at all.

He tried again.

"Eric! Knock it off!"

"Come on we have been going out for a year now!" He winced as he kept trying to kiss me.

"No!"
His expression darkened as I got up and headed toward the door. He got up after me and shoved me against the wall and started kissing my neck and trying to unzip my jacket.

"Get the hell off me Eric!" I shoved him away and he walked into a bowl of water he had sitting out for his dog. I stood there expressionless as he let out a string of profanities. He got back up to me and slapped me across the face.

I stood there, shocked. He got this really weird look on his face and looked at me.

"Oh, my God Seirnali . I’m so sorry. I-I didn’t mean to-I just-I’m so sorry!" He put his palm where he hit me.

He was drunk. He didn’t mean to. I slightly smiled.

"I know Eric. It’s ok. I forgive you." I replied.

"I promise it will never happen again. I love you. So much." He smiled.

I believed every, single, word.

I woke up. Startled. I very rarely remembered that day in whole. I sighed and laid my head back against the back of the couch.

I froze when I realized I wasn’t laying on the back of the couch.

Alexander had his legs on the table in front of him and was laying somewhat diagonally on the couch. I, on the other hand, had my head on his chest and the rest of me was laying in the empty space on the couch.

"Calm down. Don’t fall off the couch now." He laughed and looked down at me.

"Sorry…" I murmured.

"You’re fine. Stop freaking out."

I didn’t know what to do so I just laid my head back down and stared at the back of the couch. I tried to count the rows of thread in the fabric, but I got tremendously bored. I sighed and turned myself around so that I was watching the TV.

I didn’t really hear what they were saying on the TV. I was to engrossed in my own thoughts. Particularly my dream. That was just the beginning of the horrible months that followed. I had never told anyone. Ever. What he did to me. I would just lie and cover up the evidence.

Of course, I wanted to tell someone. But, I could never do it without bringing the gaping pain back. So I left it locked up in the back of my head where it haunted me every day.

I felt him kiss the top of my head. I smiled inwardly.

Maybe.

Maybe I would tell someone.

Someday.

Chapter 7

*Hear Me! I’m Crying Out! I’m Ready Now! Turn My World Upside Down! Find Me!*

~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^
By the time we were eating dinner, I was still freaking about the whole ‘I think I like him’ thing. I was very quiet while we ate.

"So what? Are you not talking to me anymore?" He prodded me.

"Huh? Oh, no, I’m just, thinking." I looked down at my plate while I answered.

He got up and put his plate in the sink. Then, he came back to the table and sat down. After a few more seconds he leaned his arms out on the table and then rested his head on his arms and looked at me.

"You’re a very complex person you know that?" He stated.

"So I’ve heard." I replied quietly.

He frowned then got back up on his feet. He walked around the table and pulled my chair out.

"What are you doing?" I asked as he pulled me out from the safety of the chair.

"We are going to go out!" He stated. I looked at the clock.

"It’s eight o clock. Where could we possibly go?" I was confused. He ran to the bedroom and grabbed my shoes and my jacket and came back into the living room and threw them at me.

"We are going to go out to eat." He said as he shoved his shoe onto his foot.

"But…we just ate…"

"We are going to go out and eat dessert." He smiled at me and helped put my jacket on. I wasn’t really one for dessert but ok. We got into his car and he drove to some ice cream shop.

We got inside and I looked at him.

"Why are we here?" I asked curiously.

"I thought you needed to get out of the house." He looked down at me.

"…So…you bring me to get ice cream?" Seemed at little odd to me.

"Yep!"

Ok then….that’s a little…random….

I ended up getting a chocolate ice cream and he got some cake batter one. We sat down at one of the tables and I looked at him with concern.

"What?" His smile faded away as he looked at my expression.

"Alexander…are you…. Ok? Mentally?"

He laughed.

"Of course, why wouldn’t I be?" He questioned.

"Well. We’re in an ice cream shop….at eight thirty at night." I answered.

"So?" He shrugged and smiled at me.

"I mean, don’t you have ice cream at your house?"

"Yeah, but it tastes better when you buy it." He continued to eat the ice cream.
I looked at the ice cream. Honestly, I wasn’t sure how to approach it. I hadn’t eaten ice cream for a while. I stopped eating dessert when Eric told me that I needed to lose weight. I frowned. He had told me so many things.

"Are you going to eat it or watch it melt?" I looked up at my ice cream to see him staring at me.

"Uh…I don’t really know how…" I felt like a freaking moron. He looked at me funny and then laughed. I scowled and started licking the ice cream.

"There. See, it’s not that hard." He was eating the cone now.

"Mmhm." I replied.

I finally got to eating the cone after about fifteen minutes. I heard him muffle a laugh.

"What?!"

"Nothing, it’s just, you were looking at the ice cream like it was the most confusing thing you had ever seen."

Usually, I would be offended or make up some comeback. But I didn’t.

"Yeah, well it kind of was." I smiled.

"Hey! You do smile!" He was extremely happy at this.

"Well, yeah…" I was getting a little worried at his strange behavior.

We got home at nine thirty. We got inside and I went to the kitchen for a glass of water. I was so confused. I wanted to hate him, but then at the same time, I really liked him.
I shook my head and put the glass away. Then, I felt him put his arms around my waist. I looked up at him. He made me feel so short.

"How tall are you?"

"I don’t know. Six feet. Why?"

I laughed. It felt weird.

"I feel really short."

"Oh. You’re not that short. And plus, I’m supposed to be taller."

"I guess." I yawned.

"You tired? I’m tired. I was going to bed. What about you?"

"Uh. Yeah. I guess I will…" I said.

He let go of me and walked out of the kitchen with me following him. After I got done getting changed and brushing my teeth, I cautiously made my way to the bedroom.

When I got in and pulled the covers up around me he put his arm around me and pulled me so that I wasn’t on the edge of the bed. I bit my lip.

Well, at least I won’t fall off the bed again.

Chapter 8

*I’m Lost Inside The Crowd! It’s Getting Loud! I Need You To See, I’m Screaming For You To Please, Hear Me!*

>*>*>>*>*>*>*>*>*>*>*>*>*>*>*>
I woke up to the sun blaring in my eyes. To my great surprise I had slept soundly with no nightmares. I kept my eyes closed.

I hated that window.

I yawned and stretched my arms out. I rolled over so that the sun wasn’t blinding me. I opened my eyes and blinked a few times.

Oh, dear God, not again.

Sure enough, I had my head on his chest. Again. This time I didn’t go flying off the bed though. I kept calm.

"Morning."

I looked up to see him staring down at me.

"What are you doing?" I queried. He flashed a crooked smile before he answered.

"Watching you sleep."

I was both flattered and frightened at the same time.

"Oh…" I trailed off. I went to get out of the bed but he had his arm rested on my back."Can you move your arm?"
"Well, I was thinking we could…talk…I mean it’s not like we are doing anything today…" He smiled at me hopefully.

"Uh. Ok." I rested my head back down on his chest. "What do you want to talk about?"

"Well. Let’s see. Who is Seirnali Bray? Hmm?" He asked.

How was I supposed to answer that? I didn’t even know who I was!

"Uh. I…don’t…know…" I replied. I honestly didn’t.

"Well, then. Let me try. You’re a nineteen year old girl who is very quiet and keeps to herself. You freak out whenever someone touches you and you’re in love with me but you deny it of course. Did I do a good job?" He smiled down at me as he watched my facial expressions change swiftly from one to another.

"I…I…don’t know what you’re talking about." I answered, flustered.

"Right." He leaned his head back on the pillow and closed his eyes.

I stared at him with my mouth open. I was trying to say something but nothing came out. He opened one of his eyes and saw my exasperated expression. He grinned and closed his eyes again.

"I…I have to go." I replied curtly. He lifted his arm off my back and I grabbed my clothes and rushed into the bathroom.

Damn it! Damn it! Damn it! Was I that horrible at covering stuff up?!

I hurriedly got dressed and did my hair. I sat down on the ground and tried to calm down. Honestly, I didn’t know I was freaking out. But I knew, sure as hell, he was going to taunt me with it. Why was I such a hopeless romantic wreck?!

I walked back out and put my pajamas in my drawer. Thankfully, he was out eating breakfast. I was in no mood to eat at the moment. I figured the best strategy for now would be to avoid him.

Yes, I realized that it might be difficult but I had to try, right?

I grabbed my laptop and plugged in the headphones once again. I thought maybe I could just hang out in here all day. I know it was cowardly to avoid him and not face all the jokes he would probably make, but I wasn’t in the mood for joking.

I had emailed Abby and my mom while I was on the internet. After that I had nothing to do so I played solitaire.

I had been on my laptop for two hours when he finally realized that I was avoiding him. He walked into the room but I ignored him.

He stood there and stared at me but I pretended not to see him. I saw him sigh and walk over to the bed. Next thing I knew he was crawling over my legs and then he got up to me and pulled my headphones out.

"You can’t avoid me forever Seirnali ." He smirked. I looked at my laptop still.

"I’m not avoiding you." I lied. Staying focused on the screen.

"Oh really?"

"Really." I mimicked.

I continued to play my game of solitaire and go on ignoring him. He frowned and shut the lid of my laptop and pushed it off my lap.

"Hey!" I frowned. I watched him pull himself closer to my face.

"So, you hid in here for two hours and messed around on your…computer?" He breathed.

It took me a minute to react.

"Yes." I answered slowly.

A smile slowly spread across his face.

"Right. That makes sense." He murmured to himself.

My God, look at that smile. And those, eyes, they’re so perfect…No! Shut up! Just stop looking at him!

He looked at me again.

"You know, you’re going to have stop lying to yourself at some point."

"What’s there to lie about?" I asked as I smiled innocently.

Chapter 9
*I’m Restless And Wild! I Fall But I Try! I Need Someone To Understand! Can You Hear Me?!
_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-

"Well, for starters…" He spoke as he kept inching closer. "You can stop denying the fact that you are in love with me." He smiled haughtily.

All right, so he was right. But I was not about to let him win so easily.

"You are horribly conceited to think that I am in love with you." I stated.

"Am I?"

"Yes."

" I see then. I just don’t understand why you can’t admit it though. I mean you’re stuck with me so…" he condescendingly stated.

"Till June." I retorted.

He snorted.

"Yeah, that’s going to last."

"What is that supposed to mean?" I asked, offended.

"Oh, I think you know perfectly well what that means." He countered.

"Well. What about you?"

"What do you mean?"

"What if you want to leave by June?" I was afraid of the answer.

"Well, I wouldn’t have that problem."

"And why is that?"

"Because, believe it or not, I actually like you. I mean I would have to. I was the one who suggested this whole set up to your parents." He raised his voice.

"It was you?!" I was shocked. "Wait. How did you know me?!" I was frightened.

"We went to school with me for a year remember?" He tapped my head.

"…No!"

He hung his head down and sighed.

"Remember, when you came to England for a year because your father had to
move up there for a job…?"

"Yeah."

"And you went to the school there for a year…?"

"Yeah…but I don’t remember you…" I eyed him.

"Well of course not! You never spoke to me!"

I shrank back.

"Look, it’s not the point."

"Then what are you trying to get at?!" I exclaimed.

"Why won’t you just admit that you like me?" He looked at me and softened his voice.

"Yes. You’re a nice person. You can be a little weird sometimes…but yes I like
you." I blurted out. He smiled.

"There, now was that so hard?"

I didn’t reply. I just glowered at the wall behind him.

"Mmhm. That’s what I thought." He kissed me on the lips and then got off of me.

I stayed there with this incredulous look on my face. He walked into the living room. I shook my head and closed my mouth.

I got up and followed him into the living room.

There is something wrong with that man.

Chapter 10

*I’m Lost In My Thoughts! And Baby, I’ve Fought For All That I Got! Can You Hear Me?*

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The next few weeks were torture. He was always touching me until I would lose it and hit him or yell at him. He found this amusing and would continue to do it.

The next day I woke up to find a note that he left me.

‘Have to go help Jake do some work. Be back later.’

Jake was his friend, I had never met him but he would talk about him from time to time. I sighed in relief. He wouldn’t be here to bug me. I got up and picked out a tank-top and some jeans. I grabbed an apple and went to go watch TV in peace.

I was in the bedroom folding my laundry and putting it in my drawer when he came home. He walked in and I looked up at him and laughed.

His face was smudged with dirt. His hair was messier than it usually was. He had spots of dirt splattered across his shirt and jeans, and his hands were covered in grease. I laughed again.

"What?" He asked.,

"You look nice." I laughed. I had no idea why I found this so funny but I kept laughing.

"Oh, so you think this is funny?" He smirked.

I nodded my head in response, trying to control myself.

"Well, you look nice today don’t you? It would just be terrible if something happened to your outfit." He replied sardonically.

I stopped laughing as what he said sunk in.

"You wouldn’t…" I said as my eyes widened.

"Oh, I would." He replied mischievously as he started towards me.

I ran past him and hid in a closet that he never used. I saw him walk past the closet and I let out a sigh of relief. He had gotten about 10 feet away from me when my stupid cell phone rang. I ripped it out of my pocket.

Damn it Abby!

I pressed ignore and shoved back into my pocket. I thought maybe he didn’t hear it, but then I heard him walk back over to the closet. I panicked and put my hand on the doorknob in an attempt to keep him out.

"Really? A closet?" He said faking disappointment.

I felt him trying to turn the door knob but I turned it in the opposite direction. It slowly started opening so I leaned back against the wall. Unfortunately, however, my hand slipped off the door knob and I fell on the floor.

He opened the door all the way and looked down at me sitting on the floor and laughed. He grabbed my arm and pulled me up.

"Let go of me!" I shouted.

"Oh, come on I just want a hug." He was amused once again at my frustration.

"No. I do not want to hug you when you are covered in dirt or any other time." Before I could say anything else he pulled me into a hug and leaned his head back to look at me. He lifted his hand and rubbed his thumb against my cheek and smeared grease all over me.

"There. You look even better now."

"Yes. Thank you." I pulled away from him and tried to rub the grease off my cheek. I started walking back to the bedroom when he grabbed my waist and started walking with me.

"So, did you miss me?"

"Terribly." I lied sarcastically. "What were you doing at Jake’s?" I asked brushing dirt off me.

"Yard work, stuff like that." He replied.

"Oh." I frowned. He let go of me and walked in the bathroom to take a shower. I went into the kitchen and grabbed a washrag and tried to wipe the dirt off me.

He came out of the shower clean and dirt free. His hair was sopping wet and plastered against his head.

"All better." he claimed.

"Lovely." I rolled my eyes. My whole ‘try and avoid him’ thing wasn’t really working because he kind of tended to follow me. He shook the water out of his hair and it sprayed across my face.

"Thanks." I said blankly.

"So, what do you want to do today?" He said, wrapping his arms around me.

"Well," I pulled his arms off me. "We could leave Seirnali alone and not annoy her…" I answered, hopeful.

"Where’s the fun in that?" He followed me back into the bedroom.

"Gee, I don’t know." I said, annoyed. I crawled onto the bed and picked up my computer.

"Am I annoying you?" He drawled.

"Well…" I started.

He came and laid down next to me and snuck his arm behind my back. I rested the side of my head on my shoulder and looked at him from the corner of my eye. He imitated me and smiled.

"Yes?" He spoke.

"Why?"

"Why what?"

"Why are you doing this to me?" I asked.

"Because I love you." He enunciated.

I narrowed my eyes and looked back to the computer. I felt him start playing with my hair. I sighed loudly.

"What are you doing?" I asked irritated.

"Playing with your hair."

I closed my laptop, set it on the floor and then sat there and waited for him to bore himself.

 Chapter 11

*Hear Me! I’m Crying Out! I’m Ready Now! Turn My World Upside Down Find Me!*

~`~`~`~`~`~`~`~`~`~`~`~`~`~

How could someone be so entertained by playing with someone’s hair?!

I sighed roughly and slipped down so that I was lying down instead of sitting up. Putting my hair out of reach. He frowned then slid down so that he was lying next to me.

This agony is never going to end is it?

After a few minutes he slowly rolled over until he was hovering over me. My heart beat sped up slightly by its self.

"What are you doing?" I feigned annoyance but truthfully I was freaking out.

He didn’t say anything. He just slowly shook his head back and forth. He slightly smiled and opened his mouth somewhat.

"Can I?" He asked gently. I was confused.

"Can you what?" I asked my voice shaking.

Instead of answering me, he bent his head down and pressed his lips against mine. He didn’t move. Waiting for my reaction. I was frozen with fear and shock. I didn’t do anything.

He continued to kiss me and I continued to panic. Half of me wanted to kiss him back but the other half of me was telling me to push him off me and call the police. Of course, I wasn’t going to resort to the latter option.

I was going to go with the first option but I didn’t really know how. So I just laid there, frozen with panic.

After a few more seconds, his kiss became more intense and he moved his mouth down to my neck. I couldn’t think straight and my breathing became sporadic.

I had never been very physical with Eric. All he would do would, hold hands, hug, a kiss on the cheek. I was used to that. Of course, every now and then I wouldn’t have minded a peck on the lips but I was happy. Well for some time at least.

I stopped myself before I started depressing myself by thinking about him. I had been doing very good at not thinking about him the past week.

I shook myself out of my thoughts to find that he was still kissing me. He slowly made his way back to my lips. Unconsciously, I started kissing him back. I could feel his lips moving against mine. It felt nice for a change.

He grabbed my hands and rested them on his back. I cautiously moved my hands up his back. I got to his neck and hesitated. After a few seconds of wavering, I moved my hands and knotted them in his hair.

I could feel him smirking. He let all his weight rest on me. It was kind of abrupt. He moved his hand against my neck and rubbed his thumb against the base of my ear.

It was getting to be too much for me.

I unknotted my hands and tried to push him off. It didn’t work. I pounded on his back. He lifted his head up and looked at me.

"What?"

I didn’t really know what to say so I just looked at him. He looked at the expression on my face and it clicked.

"Sorry." He rolled off me.

"Thank you." I got up figuring he would be mad that I didn’t let him take it anywhere. He grabbed the back of my tank-top.

"Where are you going?" He grinned.

"Uh…" I was still recovering.

"You don’t have to leave you know." He pulled me back and adjusted me so that I was laying on my side next to him.

Why God? Why?!

chapter 12
*I’m Lost Inside The Crowd! It’s Getting Loud! I Need You To See I’m Screaming For You To Please Hear Me!…*
>">">">">">">">">">
I had been watching the clock tick minute by minute for three hours now. He had fallen asleep. I was trapped. Sure, I could have simply moved his arm, but I didn’t want to wake him up.

So I just laid there.

He must have been really tired from working at Jake’s. I let out a sigh. I was so bored!

I spotted my cell phone sitting on the nightstand. Maybe I could text Abby. I reached my arm out but I couldn’t quite grab it.

I looked back at him. He was the same as he was three hours ago. I tried to pull myself out of his grip so I could grab it. I was so close to it.

It touched the tips of my fingers. I started moving it towards the edge but my hand slipped and it clattered to the ground.

Perfect.

I felt his arm tighten around my waist. I looked at him. He was still asleep. I looked at him, irritated.

"Alex." I whined.

"What?" He said without opening his eyes.

"Let go of me." I prodded his arm.

"But you’re warm." He joked as he nuzzled my neck.

"Ugh." I groaned.

"I’m tired." He yawned in my ear.

"You slept for three hours." I contradicted.

"Really?" He asked surprised.

"Yeah."

"Hmm."

I rolled over to see that he was closing his eyes again.

"If you’re going back to sleep can you let me go?" I asked impatiently.

He slowly opened his eyes again.

"I’m not going back to sleep." He smiled. I closed my eyes and briefly shook my head. I sighed and rested my head back on the pillow and looked at him.

"You’re so confusing. You know that right?" He questioned.

"How so?" I inquired.

"I don’t know. You’re very hard to read." He finally answered.

I didn’t answer. I just nodded. I kind of understood what he was saying. I mean, really, I was just
emotionally screwed up. That was it. I looked back at him.

I lifted my hand and used my thumb to wipe off some dirt that he missed on his face.

"Yeah, that makes sense." I replied.

He grabbed my hand and forced me to look at him.

"Are you ever going to tell me?"

"Tell you what?"

"What happened."

I froze. I knew what he meant. I desperately wanted to let it out, but I wasn’t sure if I was ready to tell anyone.

Chapter 13 *…Is This A Dream? If It Is, Please Don’t Wake Me From This High.* &lt; :&lt;:&lt;:&lt;:&lt;:&lt;:&lt;:&lt;:&lt;:&lt;:&lt;:&lt; I looked at him. His expression was empty. I let out a sigh and let everything out. Telling it could break my heart or save me. I could remember the day it all started. "Eric, you really shouldn’t drink another one." I warned. He looked at the un-opened can and sighed. "Yeah. You’re right." He set it down on the ground. He was drunk. Kind of. Not sober, but not completely drunk. I sighed and leaned back against him as we watched some old movie on TV. "You’re really pretty today Seri’." He smiled. "Thanks." He tried to kiss me but I pushed him away. I wasn’t much for that kind of physical contact at all. He tried again. "Eric! Knock it off!" "Come on we have been going out for a year now!" He winced as he kept trying to kiss me. "No!" His expression darkened as I got up and headed toward the door. He got up after me and shoved me against the wall and started kissing my neck and trying to unzip my jacket. "Get the hell off me Eric!" I shoved him away and he walked into a bowl of water he had sitting out for his dog. I stood there expressionless as he let out a string of profanities. He got back up to me and slapped me across the face. I stood there, shocked. He got this really weird look on his face and looked at me. "Oh, my God Seirnali . I’m so sorry. I-I didn’t mean to-I just-I’m so sorry!" He put his palm where he hit me. He was drunk. He didn’t mean to. I slightly smiled. "I know Eric. It’s ok. I forgive you." I replied. "I promise it will never happen again. I love you. So much." He smiled. "I went home that night and went to bed like nothing happened. In the morning he called me and wanted to hang out again. The next week went on and nothing happened. I thought it was all fine. Then one day I went over to his house for dinner…" "Hey honey." He hugged me. "Hey." I glanced as he led me to the dining room. There were empty beer cans in the trash can. I ignored it. After dinner we were watching TV. I looked over and he was drinking again. "Eric. Why have you been drinking so much? Is something bothering you?" "No. What? I can’t drink without there being something wrong?!" He yelled. "You’ve just been drinking a lot. I mean, I just think maybe you should cut down a little…" I suggested. "Why don’t you stop telling me what to f*ing do?!" "I…" I looked down. "You are so lucky you have me! No one else would be able to stand you! You know that?!" "I…I…was just saying." "Shut the f*** up!!" He shouted as he hit me across the face. I could feel it burn where his ring cut my cheek. I stared at the wall. Empty. It hurt to think about it. I still wasn’t crying to my surprise. I could feel him looking at me. "After that, I. Hell, I don’t know what I was thinking. I guessed that he was drunk but I didn’t really, I mean, really think it through. I kept going back to him whenever he called me. I still loved him…" "I’m sorry…I…" I started to cry. "You are such a waste! You realize that I’m the only one on this planet that would ever love you!?" "Yeah, but I…" "Shut! Up! I am so sick and tired of all your s***!" He pushed me on the ground. I was used to it all by now. The pushing. The hitting. The demeaning. The yelling. "That was the first time I broke a bone." I laughed darkly. He kicked me in the ribs. I closed my eyes and gripped my sides. He scoffed and left me laying there on the ground. I got up and an intense pain shot up through my chest. I leaned against the wall. "Just get the hell out of here!" I heard him yell from the other room. I grabbed my coat and ran out the door. "Didn’t your parents notice anything?" He whispered. "I moved out and got my own apartment when I was 17." I answered and continued. After a month I had lost count of how many ribs I broke. How many bruises I gotten. How much blood I had lost. I sat there on my couch. Thinking about how much pain he had been putting me through. I loved him though. And he was right, no one else would ever love me, but him. I sighed and then winced in pain. He had hit me for talking to another guy. I wasn’t sure how much more of this I could take. I thought about how one year with him was perfect. I couldn’t think about being with anyone else. Then the next year it all went downhill. I couldn’t help but blame myself. After a couple of days, I went over to his house. Heaven knows why. I knocked on the door. No answer. I waited for a few more minutes. Nothing. I turned the knob. It wasn’t locked. I turned it all the way and opened the door. I started to cry. I walked through the house. He wasn’t anywhere in the house. I looked down the hall. His bedroom door was open. He probably passed out. I got to his room and froze. I don’t know why this came as such a surprise to me. I mean, after all the things that he had done to break me down, I was asking for it. He was sleeping with some other girl. "S***! Seirnali !? What are you doing here?!" He was as shocked as I was. "I…I got to go." I ran out with tears streaming down my face. I could hear him yelling at me. He came running after me with a pair of pants on and grabbed my arm. "Seirnali , please, let me explain." My face was wet from crying. "No Eric! I don’t want to hear it! I don’t want to see you, hear you, or talk to you ever again. I’m so sick and tired of taking all this shift from you. So don’t come to me looking for someone to listen to you b**** and complain about your crappy life. Why don’t you just go back to your…whore and I’ll just go on with my life. Ok!? I’m through with you!" I pulled his hand off my arm and went to the door. "Fine! I don’t care! You’re just going to be alone for the rest of your life! No one is ever going to want you. No one’s ever going to love you." He shouted. "Yeah, I know you’ve told me. And Eric, I just hope that you treat her better than you did treated me because I am probably the only f*ing girl stupid enough to sit here and take it day after day after day. I hope you’re happy with her." With that, I walked out the door, never to see him again. I got home and cried. Not because I had just broken up with him, or because he was cheating on me. I was crying because despite it all, I believed all the stuff he said about me. I was stupid. I was worthless. No one ever would love me, want me, or care about me. And that’s when the three months of my endless hell on earth started.

Chapter 14
*I’d Become Comfortably Numb Until You Opened My Eyes. To What It’s Like, When Everything’s Right.*
:_:_:_:_:_:_:_:_:_:_:_:_:_:_:_:_:_:
I was crying. Of course. That’s why I hated thinking about it. I always cried either at the beginning or the end of it all.

I had forgotten where I was.

"Shhh. It’s ok." He muffled into the top of my head.

I was crying into his chest, getting his shirt wet.

"I’m sorry." I wiped the tears off my face. I smiled up at him. I was crying but I felt so much better having all of that off my mind.

"It’s ok." He pushed the hair out of my face. He smiled back at me.

I rested my head on his shoulder. It was nice. I looked at the clock.

"You…" he paused. "Are you Ok?"

I looked at him and grinned.

"Never better." I meant it.

He hugged me.

"Thanks for telling me. I know it was difficult. But, I understand you a lot better now." He laughed.

"Yeah." I answered.

"…You didn’t need him anyway. He was a piece of s***." He said.

I burst out laughing. I found this hilarious. It still felt weird laughing and meaning it.
The he became serious again.

"You know I would never do that to you right?" He looked at me intently.

"Yeah, I know." I answered honestly.

"I can’t believe you put up with him for that long." He shook his head in disgust.

"Me neither." I agreed.

He helped me up off the bed. Once I was up I hugged him.

"You can’t tell anyone else. Promise?" I begged.


"I promise." He wrapped his arms around me. I felt safe.I felt like he was the only person keeping me from breaking into those million pieces that I had put back together. I let go of him and looked down at the floor. I felt really awkward.

He lifted my chin up.

"Do you trust me?"

I thought about it. Did I? I thought I did, but then again…


"Yes." I answered quietly.

"Good." He looked at me.

"Thank you." I said.

"For what?" He looked baffled.

"For…everything." I answered openly.

"Your welcome." He smiled revealing a set of perfect, white teeth.

I breathed in and stood up on the tips of my toes and kissed him. I could tell that he was extremely surprised. After a few moments he reacted.

He wrapped his arms around me and pulled me closer to him. I put my arms around his neck. It was weird to be kissed.

I had assumed that physical contact was followed with pain. Emotional. Physical. Either or. I had to breathe. I pulled away from him.

I kept my arms around his neck and he kept his around my waist.

"I love you." He breathed into my ear.

I didn’t know what to say. I was shocked to hear it so sincerely. What was I getting myself into. He had moved his hand to my cheek.

"Me too." That’s all I could say.

I was perfectly content. Standing there. Having him hold me. Then the phone rang. He let me go and I stood there and watched him go answer the phone. I was biting my lip when he came back.

"It’s your mom." He handed the phone to me and pulled me to the couch.

"Hey." I answered.

"Seirnali ! Hi! So how are you? Are you two getting along all right?"

"Yes." I answered.

"Oh good. Well I was wondering since you two are getting along…If you two would want to come over to our house and have Thanksgiving with us." She asked with hope in her voice.

"Uh." I looked at Alex.

He looked back at me and smiled.

"Um, sure mom. Sounds great."

"Oh good! Ok you can come over at say…three?"

"O…ok." I replied.

"All right then, I will see you two in a couple days. Bye honey, I love you."

" ‘you too." I hung up the phone.

"Well?" He pulled me closer to him.

"Err, we’re going to my parents’ for Thanksgiving. Is that Ok?" I asked.

"Sounds great." He grinned.

Chapter 15
*I Can’t Believe You Found Me, When No One Else Was Looking. How Did You Know Just Where I Would Be?*
:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:}:
We were getting ready to head over to my parents house. I was dreading it. Alex, on the other hand was extremely excited. I had absolutely no idea why. I was wearing a low cut black top and some dark jeans. I was waiting in the living room.

He eventually came out. He was wearing a gray button up shirt with his usual jeans. Of course, he didn’t have the shirt buttoned up all the way, which, was extremely distracting. His hair was the same as it always was. Disheveled.

He noticed me staring at him.

"Ready to go?" He broke in.

"Yeah…" I closed my mouth.

He walked out the door and I followed closely behind him. I still felt really weird around him. Especially since I kissed him. He was happier then ever though.

We got there and I didn’t move out of the car.

"Come on Seirnali . It’ll be fine. I’ll be right there." He joked.

I looked out the window with my hand wavering over the handle. I looked back at him. He was staring at me expectantly. I bit my lip and looked back out the window.

"Well, I guess we could just stay in here…" I heard him move closer to me and then he brushed the hair away from neck. I could feel him breathing on me. He laughed quietly." I don’t mind." He continued. He started trailing his lips down my neck.

This man was literally driving me insane.

"Ok. Ok. Ok. I’ll go." I half-way shouted.

He looked at me and laughed and then turned my head towards him and kissed me again.

"Thank you." He said.

We walked up to the door and knocked on it. He slid his arm around my waist.

"You’ll be fine." He whispered in my ear.

My mom opened the door and looked at us. She raised an eyebrow and then smiled.

"Come in. Come in!" She urged us.

We walked in. It was warm. I could smell the dinner cooking.

My mom didn’t hug me. She knew my whole not touching thing. That was probably why she was surprised by the fact that I was letting Alex touch me.

"Where’s dad?" I asked.

"Oh, he’s on his way home. Should be here in thirty or forty minutes. Hungry?"

"Yeah…" I replied.

"You can go sit down if you would like." She pushed us towards the living room.

We went and sat down on the couch together. I was still cold. I curled up and leaned against him and stared absent mindedly at the TV.

The doorbell rang and I saw my mom walk to the door. She glanced at me on her way. She opened it and I heard her talking quietly.

Then, Abby came running into the living room. Her brown ponytail bouncing up and down. I hadn’t seen her in a few months.

"Seirnali !" She screamed.

"Hi.." She pulled me away off the couch away from Alex, and hugged me tightly. I looked at him with wide eyes. He just laughed. She pulled away from me and looked at me expectantly.

"Well, are you going to introduce me or not?!" She nodded towards him.

"Oh, uh…this is Alexander Johnson. Alex, this is my friend Abigail Revlen."

"Hi." He said politely.

"Hello." She shook his hand. "Excuse me for a minute." She smiled and walked to the kitchen to talk
to my mom no doubt. They were extremely good friends. I stood there shocked. He grabbed my hand and placed me next to him again.

"She’s exuberant." He laughed in my ear.

"Tell me about it." I agreed.

He kissed me softly on my cheek over and over again.

The doorbell rang again. I couldn’t think of anyone else that would be coming, but then I wouldn’t be able to think of anything at the moment.

Abby went and answered the door and she looked at me sitting there while he was kissing me. I didn’t really look at her. I was staring blindly at the wall.

"Seirnali ! Look who’s here to see you!" I heard her shout excitedly at me.

I got up with Alex tagging beside me. I got to the door and froze.

Chapter 16
*You Broke Through All Of My Confusion. The Ups And The Downs, And You Still Didn’t Leave.*
}_}_}_}_}_}_}_}_}_}_}_}
"Eric?!" I asked numbly. I felt Alex tense beside me.
"Hey Serinli. You look great!" He said. Faking.
"Yeah! I bumped into him at the mall and he said he really missed you and wanted to see you. So, I invited him!" Abby said proudly.
"Yep!" He smiled. A small, skinny blonde walked in behind him. She was gorgeous of course. Supermodel like.
"Hi. I’m Ashley." She had an annoyingly fake voice.
"Hey." I hissed.
Of course, they didn’t notice anything.
"Oh yeah, this is Ashley. My wife." He introduced.
A trophy wife. Oh, how cute. Ignores is bliss.
I felt Alex digging his fingers in my side. I looked up at him. He was glaring coldly at Eric. Eric noticed.
"Who’s this?" He asked.
"Alexander Henderson. I’m here fiancé." His voice sounded as sharp and cold as ice.
I looked at them both. Alex loomed over him. Eric looked short.
He makes everyone look short.
"Hey…nice to meet you…" Eric said awkwardly.
Abby cut through the tension like a knife.
"So, how about we watch TV. Dinner’s almost ready." She said cheerily.
We all made our way to the living room and Alex and I sat on the edge of the couch. I was on the inside of him so I was out of view. He was still glaring. I tapped his shoulder and he whipped his head around and looked at me.
"Calm down." I whispered to the both of us.
He looked at me and his expression softened slightly. I looked over his shoulder and saw his wife staring at Alex. I narrowed my eyes at her and she looked away.
"How about I give you a tour of the house?" I asked trying to distract him. He nodded sharply and I grabbed his hand and headed toward the stairs.
"Where are you going?" Abby asked.
"Showing him around the house." I answered and kept walking. I got to my room and shut my door and locked it. He went over and sat down on my bed. I went and sat next to him. He looked at me and smiled.
"I’m touched that you want to kill him for me." I commented.
"Hmm. If you’re mother wasn’t in the kitchen I would have beaten the s*** out of him." He replied.
I laughed. I would have loved to seen that. He let out a sigh and laid down on the bed. I laid down next to him and put my head on his chest.
"I remember one time, I was seven, and I snuck out of my room." I said.
"Why?" He asked curious.
" I was grounded and all my friends were outside eating ice cream across the street. So I locked my door and climbed out my window. There used to a be a tree there so I used that to climb down."
"Did it work?"
"Yeah, until I had to get back in my room." I laughed. "Yeah, I couldn’t climb the tree back up to my window so I went through the front door. I was in so much trouble."
"I would have liked to see that. Is that what you were planning on doing the first night with me?" He laughed.
"I was planning on it. I’m quite good at climbing through windows actually." I smiled.
"Oh yeah, I bet you are." He said sarcastically. We were both laughing when my mom knocked on the door.
"Dinner’s ready."
I got up and unlocked the door. He was still sitting there.
"Oh, come on." I quoted and pulled him out of the door. We were the last ones in the kitchen. I didn’t really get a lot of food and neither did he.
We got to the dining room and everyone looked at us. I got flustered and sat down in an empty chair. He followed suit. My dad was sitting by my mom. I waved at him. He smiled at me and narrowed his eyes at Alex. Of course, now, he becomes protective.
I looked at Ashley, she had a tiny salad on her plate.
Figures.
After we got done eating, everyone went out to watch football, or to Alex, soccer as he put it.
I didn’t enjoy watching the sport and neither did he so we went outside and sat on the little swing out on the porch. It was nice out.
He had his hand underneath my hair and was rubbing my neck. I had my eyes closed and he was talking about something. I tried to pay attention but I gave up.
"…I don’t know, what do you think?" He asked.
"About what?" I asked confused.
"Were you even listening to me?"
"I…no." I answered honestly. He laughed.
"What am I going to do with you?" He joked.
"What are you two doing?" I heard my dad from behind us. I turned around.
"Nothing." I smiled.
"Right, well everyone’s leaving if you wanted to say goodbye." He asked, eyeing Alex.
"Oh yeah, we should get going too." I looked at Alex and he nodded.
I had said goodbye to everyone and Alex went upstairs because he left his keys in my room. I was waiting outside. Eric was outside telling his whore goodbye. She drove herself here. After she left he came and stood somewhat near me.
I ignored him. He tried to hug me.
"Don’t even think about it." I hissed.
He smiled.

"What it’s just a hug!" He defended.
"I. Said. No." I stared at him. He got that angry look on his face. He slammed me against the wall and starting kissing my cheek.
"Get the f*** off me!" I shouted.
He was pulled off me and Alex was standing there. Pissed.
"What the f*** do you think you’re doing, you son of a b****?!" He yelled at Eric. We were across the street so hopefully my parents didn’t hear.
He pushed him on the ground.
"What?! You actually defending her?!" Eric protested as he got up.
"Yes, I am." He punched him in the face and next thing I knew Eric was on the ground wiping blood from his face. Alex went to go kick him in the head and I was afraid of what would be the conclusion to this.
"Stop!" He looked at me, incredulous. "Leave him." I said softly. He looked back at Eric, doubled over on the ground, then back at me.
"Are you ok?" He grabbed me.
"Yeah, I’m fine. Thanks." He smiled back at me then told me to go in the car. I did as he told. I was halfway over to the car when I heard him.
"Go to Hell." He said and then I looked over to see him kick him in the stomach. A minute later he caught up with me and put his arm around my waist. I looked up at him to see him grinning in satisfaction.

Chapter 17
*I Guess That You Saw What Nobody Could See. You Found Me. *
^_^_^_^_^_^_^_^_^_^_^_^_^_^_^_^_^
I was silent while we were driving back. He seemed involved in his own thoughts anyway. I actually would have loved to see Eric get what he deserved. But, ultimately, I think it would have been something that would be on my conscious for a very long time.
He parked the car in the driveway. It was dark. He didn’t move, neither did I.
I waited to see what he was going to do but he kept his hand clinched around the steering wheel.
"Alex…?" I asked tensely.
"Yes?" His voice was somber.
"Are you coming in?"
He didn’t answer. He kept looking out the window.
"Oh come on. Please?" I begged.
He turned and looked at me. He put his hand where Eric kissed me.
"Are you sure you’re ok?" He questioned apprehensively.
"Yes. I’m sure. Now, can we please go inside?" I asked again.
He sighed and got out of the car. I followed him.
I got inside. It was warm inside. He walked into the bedroom. I followed warily and I watched him from the edge of the bed. He changed into some shorts and took his shirt off. He got to the bed.
"Aren’t you going to sleep?" He asked tilting his head to the side.
"Yeah…" I got up and went for my tank-top and shorts in the dresser. I was to tired to walk to the bathroom so I took my shirt off in exchange for the tank-top. I did the same for my shorts.
He whistled as I made my way to the comfort of the bed sheets.
"Shut up." I said as I laid down on the edge of the bed. I still liked the edge but I never got to stay there for long.
"So that was fun. I mean going over to your parents house anyway." He said after a while.
"Oh yeah. Tons of fun." I said sardonically.
"Well, it wasn’t too bad."
"Yeah, I guess." I yawned.
I woke up to the shrill ring of the phone. I jerked my head up.
"It’s just the phone." He mumbled. I rested my head back down and listened to the machine pick it up.
No one.
I groaned and looked at the clock. Once I was up I couldn’t fall back asleep. I got up and he fell back asleep. I got dressed. Despite it was cold out I threw on a pair of shorts and a tank-top.
I walked back in and he was propped up against the mountain of pillows he made behind his head.
"You look nice."
"Uh, thanks." I looked down at the floor.
He had the covers off his chest. I couldn’t help but stare. He was laughing and I looked away and put my clothes away.
"So what do you want to do today?" He stopped laughing.
I walked over to the bed and laid down.
"I don’t know." I cuddled up against him.
"Hmm." He pondered. "Well…" He moved me so that I was laying on him.
"I can think of a couple things we could do." He continued.
I looked at him.
"Oh really?" I drawled and kissed him.
"Mmhmm." He murmured against my lips. He moved his mouth to my jaw. His hands slid down to my hips.
I moved my hands up his chest. He paused and then rolled over so that he was hovering over me. He leaned his head back down to my neck.
He sucked on the hollow beneath my ear. I moaned softly. He heard it and smirked.
S***! What the hell are you getting yourself into?!?!
He moved his hands on either side of me and pushed himself up so he was looking at me. He had that haughty smile of his face.
I rolled my eyes. He rolled off me and grabbed me before I could escape. I turned around so I was looking at him.
"What?" I narrowed my eyes.
"Nothing…Was Eric you’re only boyfriend?" He asked randomly.
"Yeah…" I thought about how disappointing that was.
"Oh."
"Why?" I wondered.
He smiled.
"I was just checking if I would be able to beat up anyone else…" He laughed.
"Nope. But what about you? Hmm? How many girlfriends have you had?" I watched his facial expression.
"It’s embarrassing."
I raised my eyebrow.
"Oh come on. Tell me." I urged. He sighed.
"Three. Jessica, Trish, and Angela." He looked away from me.
"Three?" I asked. Dumbfounded. I figured someone like him would have a been around the block.
"Yep." He answered. "Pretty pathetic huh?"
I shook my head.
"Jessica was my first, she was cheating on me. Trish was the second, I broke up with her…"
"Why?"
"Nothing in common I guess. And Angela was my third…" He trailed off.
"What happened with her?" I probed.
"Oh, nothing." He was hiding something.
"What did you do? Get her pregnant?" I joked. He smiled.
"No. Well, promise you won’t get mad?" He got serious again.
"Promise."
"Well, she broke up with me the night I was going to propose to her. She said she didn’t think we were right for each other. I walked home that night and she was eating dinner with some other guy." He admitted.
I felt so bad for him.
"Oh my gosh. I’m so sorry." I really was. "How long ago was that?"
"Oh, about five months ago." He answered. "But, I’m fine. I got you." He smiled.
"But, still…" I started.
"No. I don’t care about her anymore. Ok?" He forced me to look at him.
"Ok. It’s just…that’s horrible." I whispered.
"No it’s not. If she wouldn’t have broken up with me then I would have never found you." He said brightly.
I smiled back at him. I was happy that I was with him of course, but I couldn’t help but feel bad for him.

Chapter 18
*So Here We Are, That’s Pretty Far, When You Think Of Where We’ve Been.*
|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|
The days slipped into December. The ground was covered in snow. It was white everywhere. But, it was pretty outside.
It was the third week of December. It had occurred to me that Christmas would be in a week. I think my mom wanted us to come to her house for Christmas Eve. I didn’t think we really had a choice. Of course, then, more of my family would be there. I didn’t want to think about it.
I was sitting on the bed looking up what to get my two little cousins on the internet. Katrina, was my little cousin. So was James. They were both six. They were annoying as hell. Whenever I saw them, they would follow me. Katrina worshiped me. James would just annoy me. I hated kids.
I sighed and waited for the page to load. I looked around the room. I glanced outside the window and looked at ice sickles melt in the sun. I heard my phone vibrate and I whipped my head around and went to grab it.
Then I screamed.
Alex ran in and looked around the room frantically.
"What?! What’s wrong?!"
I jumped off the bed and ran up to him.
"Kill it! Kill it! Kill it damn it!" I shouted at him.
"Kill what?!" He looked at me like I was losing it.
"The spider!" I pointed to my phone.
He relaxed and looked down at me and guffawed.
"That’s what you were screaming about?" He queried.
"Stop laughing and kill it!" I shouted again. I hated spiders.
"Ok. Ok. Calm down." He left my side and went up to it and smashed it with an empty glass that was on the nightstand.
"There. It’s dead."
"Thank you." I said as I walked back to the computer and sat back down.
"You scared the s*** out of me. I thought someone was killing you." He followed me.
"It was going to!" I protested.
"Right." He said sardonically. "So, you’re afraid of spiders eh?" He teased.
"Yes. I hate them. I wish they would die." I stated. I decided I would get the two brats some toys.
"Hmm. What are you doing?" He looked at the screen.
"Getting my family they’re presents." I answered grudgingly.
"Oh, that’s right. Christmas. I already got your present." He put his arm around my shoulder.
"What do you want?" I interrogated.
"I don’t know." He pondered.
"Hmm. I don’t know what to get those two pain in the necks." I exasperated.
"Get the girl a doll and the boy a toy truck." He suggested.
"Yeah. I don’t know. Oh screw it, I don’t care if they like it or not." I got them a doll and a truck. I got my mom a book, my dad a gift card, my aunt a little figurine, and I got Abby a CD that she really wanted.
"There. Done." I sighed. I hated Christmas shopping.
"Good." He grabbed the computer and put it on his lap and looked something up.
I looked back out the window. The sun was reflecting on the snow. It was bright. I felt something crawling up my arm. I screamed and hit it off me.
I looked over at him while he was laughing.
"Don’t do that! It freaks me out!" I scowled.
"Sorry, I couldn’t help it." He was still in hysterics.
I shuddered involuntarily and picked my laptop up and plugged it in to charge it. I left the room while he stayed there on the bed laughing. I was in the kitchen when the phone rang.
"Hello?" I answered,
"Hey Seirnali !"
"Oh, hey Jake."
"Is Alex there?" He asked.
"Yeah, hold on." I walked in the room and chucked the phone at him and walked back out.
"Hello?" I heard him ask. "Oh hey Jake…No, I’m not losing it jackass!" He defended. "What do you want?" I stopped listening and snuck in and grabbed my cell phone off the table.
I went back out in the living room and called Abby.
"Hey ‘Seri. What’s up?" She answered.
"Hey, I need to go pick some presents up. You want to come?"
"Sure! I need to pick some stuff up to." She agreed.
"Ok. I’ll pick you up in a little bit." I told her.
"Ok. Bye." She hung up.
I grabbed a piece of paper and wrote that I was going to town with Abby on it and placed it on Alex’s lap. I picked up my keys, and he grabbed my arm and pulled me down to him and kissed my check.
"No. I don’t care about who you hit on last night Jake!" He said annoyed. I waved goodbye and headed out the door.
I got to her house in about twenty minutes and then started for town.
"So, what are we getting?" She asked.
"Presents for the family and I need to get Alex something." I answered.
"Ah. What are you going to get him?"
" I don’t know!"
We got to the mall and picked the stuff up. She had gotten various things for everyone. Even though she was just a friend, she practically was family. She attended our get togethers and everyone in my family loved her. Especially my mom. So in a way, she was pretty much a sister to me.
We wandered around the stores aimlessly. She was talking about her new boyfriend. She wouldn’t tell me who he was. Said she was bringing him to the Christmas thing.
I ended up getting him a guitar. I knew he liked to play it but he left his old one at home in London. I figured he might like it. I put all the stuff in the trunk of my car and we went out for lunch.
"So, do you like him?" She asked me out of the blue.
"Yeah." I answered.
Too much.
My cell phone rang and I looked at who it was.
"Speak of the devil and the devil shall appear." I murmured and flipped it open.
"What?" I answered.
"What are you doing?" He drawled.
"Eating. You?" I asked.
"Waiting for you to come home."
"So you can annoy me?" I rolled my eyes.
"No. I miss you, and I’m lonely." He laughed light heartedly.
"I’ve been gone for three hours. Call Jake again."
I could picture him frowning.
"No. What did you do in town?"
"Picked up everyone’s gifts. Got yours too." I added.
"What did you get me?" He asked excitedly.
"I’m not telling you! Look, I have to go. I’ll come home after we finish eating" I humored.
"Fine." He pouted. "Bye."
"Bye." I hung up the phone. Abby was looking at me.
"What?" I looked at her.
"Nothing. You done? I would hate to keep you away from him for too long." She ridiculed.
"Yeah. Come on let’s go." I answered annoyed.

Chapter 19
* No Going Back. I’m Fading Out, All That Has Faded Me Within. You’re By My Side, Now Everything’s Fine.*
 
I dropped her off and she told me she would see me at my mom’s on Christmas Eve.
I guess I’m going then…
I got back and took all the stuff, except the guitar, out so I could wrap it and get it out of the way. I got in and dumped the two bags on the floor. I laid down on the couch and let out a drained sigh. I heard something digging in the bags on the floor. I lifted my head up.
"What are you doing?" I asked.
He grinned sheepishly.
"Looking for my present."
"It’s not there."
"Where is it?!" He begged.
"It’s at Abby’s house." I lied.
"You ruin the fun." He pouted.
"You can wait a few more days." I soothed. I moved over so that he could sit next to me.
He sat down and I rested my head on his shoulder.
"So how is Abby?" He asked.
"Good I guess. She got a boyfriend apparently. But she won’t tell me who it is."
"What’s the point of saying anything then?"
"Well, she said she was bringing him to my mom’s on Christmas Eve."
"Oh. Brilliant." He commented, emphasizing his accent.
I laughed. He sighed.
" I missed you." He articulated.
" I was only gone for three hours." I commented.
"I know," he breathed. "I get bored and lonely though." He smiled.
"Well, in all honesty, I missed you too. Abby was driving me insane." I admitted.
The days flew by and before I knew it I had to go to my mother’s. I woke up in the morning and went back to bed.
"Get up you lazy bum." He shoved me.
"No." I groaned.
He had been pestering me for two hours. I was planning on just sleeping the whole day away and then pretend to be sick when the time came. I should have considered the external forces however.
"Why don’t you want to go?" He asked.
"Because! My family is weird and they freak me out and I have no desire to see my little cousins!" I answered into the pillow.
"What do you have against them?"
"If you must know, James is freaking in love with me and for all I know, Katrina is going to get a huge crush on you!" I groaned.
He laid down next to me.
"Sounds like fun!" He feigned enthusiasm.
"Can’t we just go back to sleep?" I begged.
"Seirnali , It’s noon." He responded.
"Exactly." I put the pillow over my head.
He skittered his hand up my back and I jumped out of the bed screaming.
"Stop doing that!" I screamed.
He rolled his eyes at me and helped me up. I grumbled as I walked into the bathroom.
I threw on a tight, red, V-cut top and some dark blue jeans and some black heels. I did my hair as I usually do. I walked back out to the bedroom and tried to go back to bed.
"No, no, no." He scolded and tore the covers off me.
"Go away…" I muffled into the pillow.
He picked me up and tossed me over his shoulder. He made his way to the car and set me down in the seat.
He got in and put the keys in the ignition.
"You can be so stubborn sometimes." He laughed as he started the car.

Chapter 20
*I Can’t Believe, You Found Me When No One Else Was Looking. How Did You Know Just Where I Would Be?*
 
 
"Seirnali !" Katrina screamed as she headed towards me.
I froze and leaned against Alex. He rubbed my arm.
She reached me and hugged me around my waist. Then James came running after her and shoved her out of the way to hug me.
"Hi Seirnali !" James smiled up at me.
"Hey James, Katrina." I struggled to make the words come out.
"Did you bring us any presents?!" They asked in unison.
"Uh, yeah." I swallowed. Kids made me very uncomfortable.
"James! Katrina! Let her come in! I want to see her to!" I heard my aunt yell from the living room.
I always liked my Aunt Anna. She respected me. I made my way with the two pests following me.
"Seirnali !" Anna came up and gave me a hug.
"Hey Anna." I smiled. She pulled away from me.
"This must be Alexander?" She looked at him.
"Yes. Alexander this is my Aunt Anna." I introduced.
"Nice to meet you." He greeted being a complete gentleman. He looked back at me. "I’m going to get the gifts." He whispered and then headed back towards the car.
"Oh Seirnali ! You two look great together!" Anna cheered.
"Yeah…" I answered watching the door. "You look nice Anna." I complimented. I hadn’t seen her in a few years.
"Thank you. But let’s talk about you! You look so much older. And you got a fiancé!" Her words rushed together. I sat down next to her and James sat down on the other side of me.
Alex came back in with the gifts and the two kids attacked them when he sat them down. He smiled at me and sat down next to me. My dad came down the stairs with a few presents in his arms. The kids tackled him next.
"Calm down would you!?" My dad exasperated. "Seirnali ." He motioned for me to come hug him.
I got up and hugged him.
"Has he tried anything with you?" He whispered in my ear referring to Alex.
"No dad." I sighed. He laughed and let me go and walked into the kitchen. I turned around.
"When’s Abby getting here?" I asked Anna.
"Um, I think in an hour or so. She said she’s bringing her new boyfriend or something." She smiled at me.
"Right." I sat down again. He put his arm around my shoulder. Anna got up and headed for the kitchen. James walked up to me.
"I got this for you." He smiled and handed me a flower that he probably stole from his mother’s garden.
"Uh, thanks James. It’s pretty." I feigned generosity. He smiled and walked off proudly.
" Aw. It’s so pretty." Alex teased.
"Shut up!" I smacked his arm. My mom walked out and stopped at end of the couch.
" I need to tell you something." She said anxiously.
"What?"
"Well, see, your wedding date was June first but it got changed to May first. I hope that’s ok…" She waited for a response. I was honestly ok with it. I didn’t know what he thought though.
"Great! That’s good!" He was beaming.
My mom sighed with relief.
"Ok. Good. That has been bugging me for weeks!" She walked back into the kitchen.
I looked at him. He looked back at me and kissed me on the cheek.
All right then..

. Chapter 21
*You Broke Through All Of My Confusion. The Ups And The Downs, And You Still Didn’t Leave.*
 
 
Abby finally came about an hour later. She rang the doorbell.
"Seirnali . Can you get that?" My mom asked from the kitchen.
I got up and headed towards the door. James and Katrina followed me. I rolled my eyes and opened the door.
"Merry Christmas Seirnali !" She threw her arms around me.
"Hey. So, where’s your boyfriend?" I looked around.
" Ok. Well, it may be a little weird but don’t worry I will explain everything."
I had no idea what she was talking about. That is until her boyfriend came up behind her.
"His wife left him a couple days after Thanksgiving. I met him again at the mall and we started dating." She hugged him.
"Hey Seirnali . Long time no see." He joked.
"Eric. What a nice surprise." I looked at the faint black eye he had and smiled. I heard someone come up behind me and I presumed who it was.
"Alex, look, Eric is dating Abby. Isn’t that a nice surprise?" I asked through clinched teeth. He looked coldly down at him.
"Oh yes. Quite."
"Come on Eric. I want to introduce you to everyone." Abby grabbed his hand and led him into the house. They passed by us and Alex dragged me outside the door and slammed it shut.
"Why the f*** is she dating him!?" He shouted at me. I stayed calm much to my surprise.
" I don’t know. She doesn’t know what that bastard did to me." I guessed.
"I swear, if he pisses me off once! I’m going to kill him."
" I won’t stop you." I wouldn’t. "But, we can’t let them know. Ok?" I put my hand on his arm. He smiled at me. James opened the door and popped his head out.
"What are you doing out here in the cold ‘Seri?" He asked.
"Nothing. I’ll be in in a minute." I said. He shrugged and went back inside.
" ‘Seri?" He quoted.
"I don’t know. Some stupid nickname he made up." I shook my head. He laughed and went back inside. I shut the door quietly and my mom told us that dinner was ready.
Alex and I sat at the end of the table away from Eric and Abby. I found it somewhat heartless that she would go out with the man that tore down my world but, whatever.
"Guess what I got you Seirnali !" James spoke.
"Hmm?"
"Guess what I got you!" He repeated.
"I don’t know. A book?" I guessed, uninterested.
"No…" He shook his head.
"I give up." I didn’t honestly care what the brat got me.
"Then you’re going to have to wait. You’ll love it!" He went back to eating.
I leaned on Alex and sighed. I saw Anna and my mom glancing at me and then talking and then glancing back at me. I rolled my eyes. Eric and Abby were talking amongst themselves. I still laughed when I saw his black eye.
Everyone was done eating but they stayed at the table to talk. I thought I would have a little fun.
"Hey, Eric, how did you get that black eye?" I asked pretending to be interested.
"Oh yeah, did you get in a fight?" Alex joined in.
Everyone stopped and became interested in the conversation.
Eric stared coldly at me and then Alex.
"Yeah. I got in a fight at a bar." He lied through his teeth.
"Oh. Wow, looks like he hit you pretty hard." I commented.
"Yeah." He snapped.
After dinner we went out to the living room and everyone exchanged presents. We watched James and Katrina tear the paper off their presents. It was amusing. Katrina screamed with joy when she opened her doll. So did James with his truck.
"You’re a genius." I praised Alex.
" I know." He joked.
I got a book from my mom, a computer game from my dad, money from my aunt, a picture from Katrina and then James came up to me to give me his gift.
"Here you go!" He gave it to me and waited for me to open it.
I opened it and it was one of those plastic rings you get out of the 25 cents machines in the grocery store.
"Um. Thank You?" I flustered.
"Your welcome!" He exclaimed.
I looked up at Alex.
"Well, I don’t think I can compete with him now." He laughed.
I scowled at him as my mom brought out dessert.
It was ice cream. I didn’t want any. Instead I went in the kitchen and made some hot chocolate. Alex followed me as usual.
"Oh, you’re ring must have cost a fortune!" He pretended.
"Oh yes, thousands of dollars easily." I played along waving it around in the light.
I waited for the water to heat up in the microwave.
He insisted on it having whip cream and small marshmallows. I watched him as he made his. I just had my plain. That was until he put whip cream all over it.
"How am I supposed to drink it now?" I asked.
"Like this." He took a sip out of his.
I tried it but it didn’t really work. I got whip cream on my nose. I shook my head and scrapped the whip cream off the top of the mug and ate it.
"You missed some." He pointed out.
"Where?" I asked.
He kissed the tip of my nose.
"All gone." He smiled.
"Thanks."
"Mmhmm." He murmured against my mouth. He placed his arms around my waist. I opened my eyes and saw Anna glancing around the corner from the living room while she was talking to my mom. She was smiling. I felt my face redden.
I knew she wouldn’t say anything to my mom though so I didn’t worry to much. He started kissing down my neck when someone cleared their throat. He jerked his head back and looked at who it was.
"What the f*** do you want?" He hissed at Eric.
"Nothing." He sneered. He looked at me. "Wouldn’t your dearest daddy be ashamed of you." He shook his head in false shame.
"Oh go to hell Eric." I snapped.
He shrugged. Abby walked in before I was about to say something.
"Hey guys. What are you talking about?" She was so oblivious sometimes.
"Nothing." Alex answered and we walked back out to the living room. My mom and my aunt were the only ones in the living room. We sat down.
"Do you have a wedding dress picked out?" My aunt bombarded.
"Uh…no. Not yet." I answered surprised.
"Oh, I can’t wait to come to it! Oh Katrina could be your flower girl! Could she?" She asked.
"Sure." I humored.
She smiled at me and my mom got up to do the dishes. She went on gleefully about it. I wasn’t really listening. I would ’yeah’ and smile at all the right times. I was planning on how to kill Eric.
After a while my aunt said that it was time for her to leave. She hugged me goodbye and so did the twerps. I said goodnight to my parents and we went outside.
"Can I kill him?" He asked once we were outside. I laughed.
"I was thinking the same thing."

Chapter 22
* I Guess That You Saw What Nobody Could See You Found Me. And I Was Hiding. Till You Came Along And Showed Me Where I Belonged.*
 
I woke up to Alex shaking me.
"What?" I asked my voice uneven.
"Wake up! It’s Christmas!" He exclaimed.
I had always thought that the whole ‘jumping up and down on Christmas morning’ ended once you passed 12, but he had always been the exception.
"Oh. Ok. Well how about you just go open your presents and then I’ll just go back to sleep." I rolled back over.
"I would, but, I don’t know where my present is." He stated. I sighed and rolled my eyes. I got up and got dressed. He wasn’t planning on getting dressed. He followed me into the living room. I stopped at the door.
"You’re going to have to wait in here." I told him. He went and sat down on the couch and I went outside. I came back in and set the large box at his feet. His face lit up.
"What is it?"
"Well, open it." I urged. He did so and pulled out the guitar.
"Holy s***! No way! Seriously!? This is amazing!" His words jumbled together in a rush.
"You like it?" I smiled.
He looked at me and nodded. I watched him take it out of the case. It was a glossy black. He played a couple songs and I watched in awe. He looked up at me and grinned and set it down and walked into the bedroom.
"Close your eyes." He shouted from the room. I did so and relaxed on the couch. I heard him come back in the room and sit next to me. He grabbed my hand and pulled it towards him.
"Now, I know it’s not as high priced as the one you got last night but…" He trailed off jokingly. He slipped a ring on my finger and I opened my eyes to look at it.
It was silver with a simple little diamond on it. It was perfect. I wasn’t much for those big flashy rocks.
"I don’t know. I mean I thought I would get you a nice little engagement ring you know." He looked down at his feet.
"Oh my God Alex! It’s perfect! I love it! I really do! Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you!" I shouted breathlessly. I hugged him tightly.
"It’s not that great. Really. I mean it’s just a little ring." He told me confused by reaction.
I pulled back and grinned.
"No. I love it! Really! Thank you!" I contradicted. He smiled, pleased.
"Yeah, yeah, yeah." He replied. "And, thank you for my gift!" He picked it back up.
"Mmhmm." I replied as I got up to get something to eat. I got in the kitchen and flaunted my ring so I could admire it and I thought about what to eat. He came up behind me and put his arms around my waist.
"You like it?" He asked.
"Yes. I love it!" I answered enthused. I turned around so that I was facing him and kissed him.
He reacted by pressing me against the edge of the counter. I slid my hand under his t-shirt and started to run my hands up his chest. He got the hint and took his shirt off and threw it on the floor.
He groaned in frustration when the doorbell rang. He ignored it though. He picked me up and sat me on the counter. He left my mouth and I gasped for air.
"Shouldn’t we get the door?" I asked.
"No." He answered quickly. The doorbell rang again. And again. And, again.
He sighed in frustration.
"I’ll get it." I hopped off the counter and went to the door.
I opened it to reveal Abby standing there with a present in her hand.
"I forgot to give you your present last night! So, here I am!" She explained.
"Oh. Thanks." I said as Alex came up to see who it was. He didn’t bother to put his shirt on. I flushed.
"Morning." Abby answered warily.
Alex smiled back in response and then it turned into a scowl when Eric came up behind Abby.
"Merry Christmas." His cruelness hidden under the guise of kindness.
It surprised me that Abby never noticed how hostile Alex was towards to Eric. Or how whenever Eric walked in everything went silent. I guess she was wrapped up in her own happy little world.
"Likewise." Alex replied.
"Can we come in?" Abby asked us expectantly.
I looked up at Alex and he had a mischievous smile on his face.
"Of course." He invited.
They walked in and made their way to the living room.
How long is that relationship going to last?

We followed them and sat down on the couch. He still had his shirt off. He was warm though.
Eric was looking around the house from the couch. Abby noticed the ring on my hand.
"Seirnali ! You got a ring? Let me see it!" She pulled on my hand.
"Yep. This morning, in fact." I boasted.
"Wow. Did you like your guitar?" She directed it to Alex.
He smiled brightly and nodded at the same time.
"So, did Eric get you anything for Christmas?" I asked Abby.
"Oh yes he did actually!" She flashed a diamond tennis bracelet.
Son of a b****!
"Oh, wow Abby. That’s beautiful. I’m going to get some coffee. Would you like some?" I asked.
"Yes please." She answered. I got up and Alex followed.

I got in the kitchen and started making the coffee.
"That son of a b****!" I hissed under my breath.
"What?" Alex asked interested.
"That bracelet! He gave that to me on my seventeenth birthday! I gave it back to when I broke up with him! That bastard!" I explained.
"Oh really now?" He narrowed his eyes and looked out towards the living room.
"Yes! Oh I swear I’m going to kill him!" I was mad at the fact that he was interfering in my life. I wasn’t jealous. No. I had suppressed anger that I should have gotten out seven months ago.
"Well, we have another thing in common then don’t we?" He commented as I continued to make the coffee.

Chapter 23
*You Found Me When No One Else Was Looking. How Did You Know? How Did You Know?…*
 
 
"Here you go." I handed her the coffee.
"Thanks." She answered while she took a sip of it.
"How’s your eye?" Alex questioned Eric.
"Fine. Thank you." He answered blankly.
"Poor thing. He got it after Thanksgiving." Abby said sympathetically as she rubbed his arm.
"Yeah." I agreed, pretending to be concerned.
Poor thing my ass.
After an hour or so they finally left.
"I hate him so much." Alex commented.
"I know. I do too." I agreed as I went to make the bed.
" I just don’t get it. One day he’s married, and the next he’s going out with Abby? I don’t think that’s normal. And how can she even go out with him? I mean it hasn’t even been a year since you were going out with him!" He vented as he watched me.
"I don’t know. Abby is probably the most oblivious person I know." I admitted. He laughed at that.
"I’ve noticed." He laughed again and hugged me.
When New Year’s Eve rolled around Alex suggested that I should go out with Abby and he would go out with Jake.
"What are you going to do? Go to some stripper club?" I joked.
"No!" He answered offended.
"Calm down, I was joking." I replied. "Yeah, I can call her. She will probably be up for it." I picked up my cell phone and dialed her number.
I explained it all to her and she agreed happily. Jake had already said yes and was coming over so Alex could drive.
Jake got there and I answered the door.
"So this is the infamous Seirnali eh?" He said once I opened the door. He had short dark brown hair and he wasn’t as tall as Alex, but he was a little bit bulkier. He was good looking I concluded.
"Yep! You must be Jake!" I replied.
He pulled me into an unexpected hug.
He’s friendly…
"Hey! Get your hands off my fiancée!" Alex joked.
"Hey! I was being nice!" He defended as I shut the door.
"Sure." He looked at me. "Be careful all right?" He told me.
"I will." I promised. He kissed me.
"Ew. Come on Alex. I didn’t come here to watch you make out with her!"
Alex turned around and threw something at him. I waved goodbye and told them to have fun as I went out the door.
I got to Abby’s. She wanted to go to a bar, but I wouldn’t be able to anyway ‘cause I was 19. She was 22. So we were just going to do whatever. I got to her apartment to find that she was throwing a party.
Oh this should be interesting.
She met me outside and led me inside. She had a whole bunch of her friends and some other people I didn’t know in her place. She had music playing and of course she had the beer sitting on a table.
"Party!" She shouted.
"Yeah!" I acted.
I really want to go home now. This is going to be hell.
She left me and I made my way to the food. I was hungry. I grabbed some food and she offered me something to drink. I refused. She shrugged. I knew a couple of people so I went around and talked to a few people.
After a few hours of that nonsense, I decided to go home. I didn’t entirely regret coming. I caught up with a ton of old friends.
I told her goodbye and looked at my cell phone. It was eleven. I was halfway to my car when Eric showed up.
"Where you going?" He asked.
"Home, moron." I replied as I looked for the key to the door.
"What the f*** is your problem?" He walked up to me.
"My problem? You are the one with the problems! Your ‘wife’ just left you and you start going out with Abby?" I confronted. "So, that’s my problem. You."
"Where’s your bodyguard?" He asked.
"Not here." I answered. "Is there something you need? Because I’m leaving." I stood there next to the open car door.
"You know, one day, he’s going to leave. And I am going to be there when you break."
"Yeah, that’s nice Eric. Look, why don’t you get the hell away from me and tell this s*** to someone else."
I got in my car and drove away and left him standing there in the street.

Chapter 24
*…It’s Like You’re A Drug. It’s Like You’re A Demon I Can’t Face Down.*
 
 
I got home and he was still gone. I sighed and sat down on the couch and played on the laptop. He came home an hour later.
"Oh! You’re home! Did you have fun?" He asked as he hung his coat up.
"Yeah, I guess." I didn’t really know. "What about you? What did you do?"
"Oh, went to a bar. Jake got wasted, he’s going to be sick all night." He grinned. "But, it wasn’t much fun. You weren’t there to keep me company."
"I wouldn’t have been able to anyway. I’m not of age remember?" I laughed.
"You could get in." He supported.
"Right." I yawned. "Well, I’m going to go to bed." I got up and he followed. Of course.
I sat on the end of the bed and started took my shoes off and dropped them on the floor. He laid down beside me and he pulled me down to him.
"You know what we should do tomorrow?" He questioned.
"Hmm?" I asked half asleep.
"Look for a wedding dress for you!" He said enthused.
"Really?"
"Yeah. I mean unless you don’t want to go with me." He added.
I didn’t really want to go with someone else. Or alone.
"No. I want you to go with me. I don’t want to take Abby or my mom." I admitted.
"Good. That’ll be fun."
"Mmhm." Then I fell asleep.
I woke up buried under the covers. I opened my eyes and stayed under the covers where it was warm. Alex stuck his head under the covers to look at me
"You awake?"
I nodded in response and closed my eyes again.
"No, you’re not."
"Yes I am." I yawned. I popped my head out of the covers and rested it on the pillow. He threw the cover over the edge of the bed. I shivered at the gust of cold air. He pulled me against him.
"Cold?" He laughed. I nodded and stretched.
"I’ll go get dressed." He let me go and I grabbed some clothes. He was already dressed.
What time does he get up?!
We got into town and we went to the mall. I had no idea what kind of dress I was looking for or why he even wanted to go with me.
"Why did you want to go dress shopping with me?" I asked.
"I don’t know. I like being with you." He said honestly. I smiled pleased.
We found a store that had all sorts of dresses. We walked in and I looked for the wedding dresses.
"Hey, how about this one?" He held up a short black dress.
"No." I sighed and rolled my eyes. I found the wedding dresses and a clerk came up to me.
"Can I help you?" She asked politely.
"No thank you. I’m just looking." I answered and she walked off. I looked through a couple until I found one that caught my eye.
It was strapless and the top was black with white and silver embroidered flowers. The bottom was white with black and silver flowers that tapered down to the end. It had gray and silver ruffles and the very bottom that cut diagonally across the bottom of it. It had a sheer black veil that had gold lining on the end.
It was perfect!
I looked for Alex but he was rummaging through all the short dresses. I rolled my eyes and went to go try it on. The clerk helped me.
"Seirnali ?" He was looking for me.
"Over here." I shouted.
He came around the corner to find me standing in front of a large mirror.
" I like it." He grinned.
"I do too!" I agreed in a slightly higher voice. He watched me turn around at look at my reflection in the mirror.
"You want to get it?" I asked after I was done. I bit my lip and showed him the price tag.
He shrugged nonchalantly and smiled. Money wasn’t a huge deal to him on account of his aunt and uncle who passed away where extremely rich and left him a large sum of money when they died. A very large sum. He tended to conceal just how much, which probably meant that it was a lot. And, on top of that, he had a trust fund that was gaining more and more interest every single day. So, he had money,
"If you want it, then we will get it." He told me.
We ended up getting it. But we left it at the store so it wouldn’t be in the house.
"Hungry?" He asked once we got out of the store. I nodded.
We went to some Italian restaurant for lunch. I just had a salad he had something that I couldn’t pronounce. He barely could either. I looked at him. There was something different but I couldn’t quite place it.
"Did you shave?" I noticed.
"Uh. Yeah." He half smiled, surprised.
"Oh." I said somewhat disappointedly. I kind of like the scruffy look on him. But then again….
"What’s wrong?" He laughed quietly.
"Nothing." I smiled at him.
He reads me like a book!
"What? Is it because I shaved?" He leaned towards me and lowered his voice.
I flushed and looked down at my empty plate.
"Is it?" He asked, incredulous. "You like it when I don’t shave, don’t you?" He laughed.
"Well…" I trailed off and nodded.
"Hmm." He commented, thoughtful. I looked up at him.
"What?"
" Nothing. It’s just my past three girlfriends made me shave all the time. I thought you would too."
I shook my head in disagreement.
"No. I like the stubble." I laughed.
"Good. Because I hate shaving." He grinned.

Chapter 25
*It’s Like I’m Stuck. It’s Like I’m Running From You All The Time. And I Know, I Let You Have All The Power.*
{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{
The next day I became very bored waiting for Alex to wake up. He had gone to help Jake get home and then fix his car after it broke down on his way home. He ended up coming home around three in the morning. I waited for him. I couldn’t sleep anyway.
I ventured into the kitchen. It was eleven in the morning. I picked through the stuff he had in his kitchen until I found all the ingredients for chocolate chip cookies.
By the time I had it all made and put some in the oven it was twelve. I was hoping to kill more time but oh well. I grabbed a spoon and scooped out some cookie dough to eat.
"You making cookies?"
I jumped and turned around to see him leaning on the door way rubbing the sleep away from his eyes.
"Mmhm." I said while putting the spoonful of cookie dough in my mouth. I looked and him wondered how he managed to look so good in the morning. I got caught up in looking at him and jumped when the timer went off. I took them out of the oven and placed them on the counter to cool.
He picked up the cookie and eyed it. I watched him from the corner of my eye as I placed more cookie dough on the sheet. I came to the conclusion that he was debating on whether or not it would be good.
" It tastes good. I promise." I said as I ate a cookie to prove it.
He looked at it again and then took a bite out of it. I watched him. He smiled and ate the rest of it.
"You like it?" I asked. He smiled at me and nodded and grabbed a couple more and went back to the bedroom to change. I went back to the cookies. He walked back in and grabbed the milk and drank a glass.
"Those are really good." He praised.
"Thanks." I turned around and laughed.
"What?"
"You got some chocolate on you." I wiped it off his cheek. He flashed a crooked smile and wrapped his arm behind my back and pulled me against his chest.
"What time is it?" He asked. I looked at the clock on the wall.
"Twelve twenty." I replied.
"Why were you still up when I got back?"
I thought for a good reply.
"I missed you." I quoted him.
"Oh, well isn’t that sweet." He said sweetly and kissed me. I closed my eyes and placed my arms behind his neck and kissed him back. He backed me into the wall and ran his hands up to my neck.
He licked my bottom lip. I hesitated. After a second or two, I slightly opened my mouth. I tasted the chocolate.
I tangled my fingers in his disheveled hair. He groaned and pressed me against the wall. I smirked this time.
He slid one of the straps of my tank-top down. He kissed down my jaw and then started down my neck. I unbuttoned the rest of his shirt. The timer on the oven went off but I ignored it.
"Aren’t you going to get that?" He muttered into my ear. I shook my head and kissed his jaw.
"If you burn those cookies you are going to regret it." He joked. I pushed him off me and went to the oven. I pulled them out of the oven and set them on the counter. I pushed the strap back up to my shoulder.
He hugged me and grabbed a cookie.
"These are addictive." He commented.
"I know." I sighed. He put the cookie up to my mouth and I took a bite out of it. He ate the rest of it. I kissed him again.
I licked my lips.
"You taste like chocolate." I remarked. He licked his lips.
"Really?" He drawled.
"Mmhm." I confirmed and rested my head on his chest.

Chapter 26
* It’s Like The Only Company I Seek Is Misery All Around. It’s Like You’re A Leech, Sucking The Life From Me.*
 
"When’s your birthday?" We were watching TV.
"September 23rd . Why?" I asked.
"Just wondering."
"When’s yours?"
"May 13th." He answered. I flipped out my phone and answered the text message from Anna and set it on my lap. He grabbed my cell phone opened it. I watched him sift through my phone.
"What are you doing?" I asked as he pointed the phone at us sitting on the couch.
"Taking a picture." He answered. "Smile." He told me. I did so as he took the picture. He pressed a few more buttons and gave it back to me.
I opened it again to see that he put the picture as the background.
"It’s beautiful." I laughed. He got up and went into the kitchen and then sat back down next to me.
"How many of those have you eaten?" I inquired and nodded toward the cookie in his hand.
"A few…" He looked at me innocently. I shook my head in false shame and grabbed a blanket and draped it over me. He laid down and laid me on top of him and I pulled the edge of the blanket under my arm.
He rested his hand on my back and turned his head to look at the TV. I pulled my hand out from under the blanket and started playing with his hair. He turned his head to look at me.
"What are you doing?" He raised his eyebrow.
"Playing with your hair." I quoted and continued to mess his hair up. He watched me with a slight smirk on his face.
Thirty minutes later I finished styling his hair.
"Done?" He questioned.
"Yeah." I replied. He sighed and rubbed his hand up and down my back.
"You are so easily amused." He chuckled.
"Yes. Yes, I am." I agreed fully. He sighed.
"I don’t know about you sometimes." He stated.
"And what is that supposed to mean?" I asked and pushed myself up so that I was looking down at him.
"Well, you can be a little odd sometimes don’t you think?" He played.
"Well, sometimes…I mean, you know." I said coyly and sat up. I looked at him. It was dark outside and the only light we had on was coming from the TV. I wrapped the blanket around me and fell back on the other side of the couch.
He crawled over to me and hovered above me. After a few minutes he laid down. The air huffed out of my mouth from the sudden weight resting on me. He grinned at me.
I toyed with the button on his shirt. He kissed my collarbone and made his way up my neck. I moaned and ran my fingernails up his back. He sat up suddenly and I watched him take his shirt off and toss it behind him.
Then he pulled my shirt up over my head and tossed it next to his. He leaned back down and pressed his lips against mine. I opened my mouth slightly, he did the same.
I could feel his tongue against mine. It felt weird. I ran my fingers through his hair. He went back to kissing my neck as I caught my breath. I felt his stubble rub against my cheek. I smiled to myself.
He slid one of my straps down my arm and paused.

He looked up at me.
"What?" I said somewhat disappointedly.
"I should stop." I found it nice he was respecting my boundaries.
"Right." I agreed and he got off and I followed him closely into the bedroom.
I went to the dresser to grab a tank top. He was right behind me.
"You have a tattoo?" He said, touching the spot on my shoulder.
"Huh? Oh yeah. I got it three years ago." It was a little red rose with some petals falling from it. It was on my shoulder blade where no one could see it.
"Oh. Got anymore?" He moved his hand towards my waist.
"No." I playfully slapped his hand away. He turned me around so I was facing him.
"Just checking."
"Right." I got to the bed and pulled the covers over me and practically took them all. He stood at the edge of the bed.
"Do I get any covers?"
"Nope!" I laughed. He frowned.
"Please?" He begged.
"I guess." I sighed and he crawled in and took them.
"Thanks so much." He rolled his eyes. I snuggled against him.
"Your welcome." I yawned.

Chapter 27
* It’s Like I Can’t Breathe Without You Inside Of Me. And I Know I Let You Have All The Power.*
øøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøøø
"You know, one day, he’s going to leave. And I am going to be there when you break."
"Shut the f*** up!!" He shouted as he hit me across the face. I could feel it burn where his ring cut my cheek.
I jolted out of my odd dream.
I opened my eyes. It dark. It felt like there was a huge weight on my chest. I tried to figure out what it was. I tried to push it off. I scoffed.
"Alex, get off of me. I can’t breathe!" I hit his shoulder repeatedly.
"What. What’s wrong?" He lifted his head sleepily and looked at me.
" Can you please move?!" I demanded.
"What are you talking about?" He blinked.
"You’re laying on me!" I pushed.
"Oh. How did that happen?" He joked and rolled off. I took back the covers and curled my legs against my chest.
It was six in the morning. I rolled over and huffed out a sigh.
"Now I can’t fall asleep! I hope you‘re happy!" I complained.
"I am." He supported.
I waited for another hour and got dressed and what not in that hour. I sat back on the bed and I thought that I would annoy him this time. I rolled over and his back was facing me. I blew the hair out of my eyes and set my chin on his shoulder. He turned his head slightly and opened his eyes.
"What?" He looked at me.
"Nothing." I enunciated. He eyed me skeptically. I smiled and moved as he rolled over and pulled me against him.
"Bored?" He more so pointed it out than asked. I nodded my head in response.
"Well, I suppose, we could go out for breakfast." He suggested in my ear. I liked the idea and nodded my head quickly.
"Ok. But Alex wants to sleep for another hour first." He yawned. I knew that a ‘hour’ really meant ‘hours’. I rolled my eyes and waited.
We got to the restaurant and I found the fact that he never bothered to button his shirts up all the way exceptionally distracting.
He was looking at the menu so I ogled. He asked me something but I didn’t hear him.
"Seirnali ?" He tapped me on the nose.
I snapped my jaw shut and shook my head quickly.
"Huh?" I asked dumbly. He laughed.
"What are you getting?" He repeated.
"Oh uh, I don’t know…what are you getting?" I asked.
"That." He pointed to a picture of a waffle covered in whip cream and other sweets. He grinned at me.
"I’ll just get that too then." I stated. He cleared his throat after the waiter took our orders and left.
"So, what were you looking at?" He asked . I blinked a couple times.
"It’s very distracting when you don’t button your shirt all the way." I blurted and grabbed a crayon that was sitting on the table and started drawing on the napkin. I looked up at him briefly to see that condescending smile on his lips.
I narrowed my eyes and went back to the napkin. He got up and sat next to me instead of across me. He put his arm around my shoulder.
"Do you like me better then Edward Cullen?" He joked.
"In your dreams." I smirked.
"Oh. Speaking of dreams, did you know you talk in your sleep?" He was getting somewhere with this. I flushed.
"I do not!" I retorted.
"Yes, you do. You wouldn’t know of course because your asleep." He noted. I rolled my eyes.
"So? Even if I do. What’s your point?" I went back to drawing. I saw him grin out of the corner of my eye.
"My point is, that you talk about me perpetually in your sleep." He arched his eyebrows.
I gaped.
"I do not!" I refuted.
"Yes. Yes you do." He corrected as the waffles came.
"Liar." I muttered under my breath.
"I don’t lie." He put the fork in his mouth.
"Oh, how would you know? You’re asleep before I even get into bed." I stabbed the cherry on the plate with my fork.
"Yes, but." He paused to swallow. " I do wake up in the middle of the night from time to time." He confessed.
I had a feeling I wasn’t going to win this argument. Everyone had told me at one point or another that I talked in my sleep from time to time.
"Shut up and eat." I snapped.

Chapter 28
* And I Realize I’m Never Going To Quit You Over Time. It’s Like I Can’t Breathe!
It‘s Like I Can‘t See Anything!*
???????????????????????
"Hey Seirnali . You want to do something today?" Abby called me on my cell. I was sitting on the couch watching Alex outside. I wasn’t really paying attention.
"No. I’m busy today." I answered listlessly.
"Doing what?!" She demanded.
" I got to go." I shut the phone without saying good bye and walked outside.
"What are you doing?" I asked him once I was outside.
"Jake said he dropped his sunglasses out here but I can’t find them." He said, defeated.
"Oh." I answered.
"What are you doing?" He asked me the same question.
"Nothing." I started towards the door. He caught up to me.
"Fun." He said sarcastically. He grabbed my hand.
"You still wearing this?" He said referring to the ring.
"Yes! I love it." I defended. He nodded in satisfaction. We were almost to the door when he stopped short and plopped onto the grass and dragged me along with him. "What are you doing?"
"Nothing." He recited. I rolled over on my stomach and rested my chin on my hands. After a few minutes of that I rolled over to my side. He copied me.
"Hello." He greeted jokingly.
"Hi." I responded. I smiled and closed my eyes. I could feel him breathing slowly on my mouth. I opened my eyes he was less than an inch away from me.
After what seemed like minutes he pressed his mouth on mine. He pressed my back against the grass and parted his lips and I slipped my tongue is his mouth. He groaned. I ran my hands across his chest and around his neck.
He kissed hungrily down my neck. I closed my eyes and moaned into his ear. He grabbed both my wrists in one of his hands and pinned them above my head.
After a few minutes he pulled away and I involuntarily whimpered. He looked at me and cocked his head to the side. I winced in regret. He chuckled softly and tilted his head and pressed his lips against my ear.
He placed his hand on my neck and set his other hand under the hem of my shirt. He kissed down my jaw line and stopped at the corner of my lips. I concentrated on breathing steady.
"Did you want to go inside?" He whispered. I nodded my head weakly. He got up and pulled me to my feet. He dragged me through the door and then he pushed me against the wall.
He pulled my shirt up over my head and then he crashed his lips down back on mine. I entangled my hands in his hair and licked his bottom lip. He immediately opened his mouth.
He pulled away and looked at me. His mouth was slightly open and his eyes were hazy. He looked at me and grinned. I wrapped my arms around his neck and rested my forehead on his and sighed.
He tilted his head and kissed me meaningfully. He pulled my head against his chest. He kissed the top of my head and then handed me my shirt. I smiled and thanked him sheepishly and I pulled it back on over my head.

Chapter 29
* Nothing But You! I’m Addicted To You! It’s Like I Can’t Think, Without You Interrupting Me! In My Thoughts, In My Dreams, You’ve Taken Over Me.*
||||||||||||||||||||||||
"I can’t believe Eric gave this to me!" Abby squealed from the other side of the table in the mall. The bastard gave her a necklace with her birth stone on it.
"Yeah, me neither." I muttered under my breath. She looked at me strangely at first and then smirked.
"You’re jealous aren’t you?" She mused.
"No!" I was offended.
"Well, I mean I would understand Seirnali . Eric was out with you for two years and he never gave you anything and he gives me stuff. And plus, Alex never gives you anything really so…it’s ok I understand." She was smug. I narrowed my eyes at her. No, I was not jealous, but at the moment I hoped that she would find out who Eric really was.
"For your information, Abigail," I used her full name, " I’m not jealous nor will I ever will be." I snapped. She looked back at me incredulously.
"If you say so." She commented. I got up and walked to the bookstore and she followed.
"Is something wrong with you?" She asked.
"No." I said annoyed.
I walked to the magazines and picked up a couple and looked through them. Nothing of particular interest. I sighed. Lately, Abby was getting on my nerves. She would not stop talking about Eric.
I didn’t even know why I came with here. I would have gone home but she picked me up so I was stuck here.
My cell phone rang and I looked at the caller ID. I smiled and flipped it open.
"Oh thank God!" I sighed into the phone.
"Wow, you must be being tortured." He joked.
"Yes." I moaned. I looked over my shoulder and Abby wasn’t in ear shot. "If she talks about Eric one more time I might actually kill her." I whispered.
"You want me to come get you?" He asked.
"Yes. Please!" I begged. He laughed.
"Ok. I’ll be there in a little bit." He hung up the phone. I turned around and Abby was there.
"Who was that?" She inquired.
"Alex." I answered and walked out of the store.
"Oh." She commented. She caught up to me. "So, has he even kissed you yet? Eric’s a very good kisser." She boasted.
I ground my teeth and closed my eyes.
"Well, has he?" She pressed.
"Yes." I answered.
"Oh." She paused. "Guess where Eric took me out to dinner last night? I’ll give you a h-."
"Shut up! I don’t want to hear about you and Eric anymore! I’m sorry Abby, but I don’t care about that bastard!" I cut her off. She stared at me with her mouth open.
"Bastard? Look Seirnali , I know he broke up with you and everything but…" She said, conceited.
"Oh. Is that what he told you? That he broke up with me?" I asked. I bit my tongue before I could tell her anything else. "I got to go." I snapped and walked outside. As if on queue, Alex pulled up. I got in the car and slammed the door shut.
"What’s wrong?" He looked at me.
I smiled.
"Just trying not to kill Abby." I joked.
"And…?" He pressed.
"Oh, well, she kept talking about Eric and how I was jealous of her, which I’m not, and I yelled at her but, did she listen? No." I spilled.
"Ah." He summed. I sighed and leaned my head on the side of the door.

Chapter 30
*It’s Like I’m Not Me. It’s Like I’m Lost. It’s Like I’m Giving Up Slowly.*
ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ
"Alex, knock it off." I said, annoyed. It was the middle of the night. I felt his hand skit up my arm.
"I’m not doing anything." He contradicted groggily. I threw the blanket off me and there was a little demon spider sitting on my arm. I screamed and jumped out of the bed and ran to the wall.
He jumped in surprise and he looked at me. I was frantically brushing my hand on my arm. He watched me, amused.
I walked out to the living room.
"Where are you going?!" He shouted.
"I’m sleeping on the couch!" I stated and laid down. He stumbled out.
"Seriously?" He asked.
"I am not sleeping in there." I let my head fall on the pillow. He walked back in the bedroom and grabbed the blanket off the bed and came back to the couch. He laid down next to me on the couch and threw the blanket over the both of us.
"What are you doing?" My question was muffled by the pillow.
"What does it look like I’m doing?" He retorted and wrapped his arms around me. I shrugged and nestled my head against his chest.
I woke up in between the couch and Alex. I shuddered when I thought of that little demon creature on my arm. His arm tightened around me involuntarily. I rolled my eyes and looked at him.
His head was laying on the arm of the couch and his mouth was slacked open. He was faintly snoring.
I smiled. I was slightly amused by his current scenario. I relaxed and thought about Abby. I was quite pissed at her. One, because she hadn’t been herself since she started dating Eric. And two, she was being a b****.
I sighed rather loudly. He stirred behind me and groaned.
"Morning." I greeted. He smiled at me and closed his eyes again and stretched. I looked at the other end of the couch. His feet were hanging over the edge. I laughed.
"You’re to freakishly tall for the couch." I nodded towards his feet. He looked down at them and frowned.
"Huh, so that’s why I was freezing last night." He concluded. He looked back at me. "What’s bothering you?" He pried. I smiled supportively.
"Nothing." I answered quickly. He looked down at me and raised his eyebrow.
"Really?" He asked again.
"Well…" I started. "Never mind, it’s my problem." I said, not wanting to bother him.
"C’mon, tell me!" He pressed.
"It’s Abby. She’s just been such a…b****, since she started dating Eric. I can’t stand it. And all the ‘oh look what Eric bought me’, ‘guess where Eric took me?’. I can’t take it anymore." I confessed.
"Oh, well. She’ll figure him out eventually and then you can have your fun." He grinned.
I laughed.
"I guess that helps." I sighed.
Later that day I ventured back into the bedroom and put the bed back together. I was on guard looking for the spider.
"I think you have an abnormal fear of spiders." He commented as he walked in the bedroom.
"I do not. They are demon creatures and they should be feared." I sniffed. He wrapped his arms around my waist.
"I think you’re safe." He assured in my ear. I shook my head numbly in disagreement and he chuckled.

Chapter 31
*It’s Like You’re A Ghost That’s Haunting Me. Leave Me Alone. And I Know These Voices In My Head Are Mine Alone.*
???????????????
" ‘Let’s take a hike in the forest in the back yard. It’s nice out.’" I mocked as he pulled me through the trees. I tipped my head up at the sky and a few raindrops splashed on my nose.
"It was nice out when we left." He grumbled.
A loud crack of thunder broke the silence in the forest. I jumped and he laughed.
"Scared?" He teased.
"No." I defended. Then a flash of lightning lit up the sky. Now, I was scared.
"Get me home right now!" I demanded halfway shouting. He grinned and grabbed my hand and started pulling me back towards the warmth and safety of the house. It started pouring rain.
"Holy s***." He blurted at the sudden downpour.
"You better not be lost, or I swear, I will kill you!" I threatened.
"I’m not lost." He objected. He paused to look for the opening in the woods. He spotted it and jerked my hand forward.
"Slow down!" I shouted. He laughed and kept dragging me until we finally got to the yard. I was soaked. So was he. My hair was plastered against my face and I had to keep moving it out of the way so I could see.
His white t-shirt was clinging to him and his hair was flattened and dark. He stopped when we got to the door.
"What are you doing?" I asked incredulous and cold.
"I want to do something." He shouted over the thunder.
Before I could ask what he placed his hand on my neck and kissed me. My mind immediately went to the corny romantic movies where they would kiss in the pouring rain. I smiled inwardly assuming that’s what he was thinking.
He pulled away and smiled his crooked smile at me.
" I don’t see what the big deal about kissing in the rain is." He exclaimed. Another roll of thunder brought me back to reality. "You want to go in?" He shouted over the storm again. I nodded my head rapidly in response. He grinned again and opened the door and I ran in after him. He walked me to the bedroom. I flipped the light switch on.
Nothing.
"Are you kidding me?!" I shouted to no one in particular.
"What?" He said shaking the rain from his hair.
"The power’s out!" I indicated.
"We’ll be ok." He comforted and took his shirt off and grabbed a towel. He started taking off his rain soaked jeans. I stood there, watching him, not knowing what to do.
"Well, aren’t you going to get into some dry clothes?" He asked as he wrapped the towel around his waist. " I won’t look." He teased.
I eyed him and grabbed some clothes and walked into the bathroom. I changed into some dry sweats and a tank-top. I combed out my hair and then put it back up. I walked out of the bathroom clean and dry. He had a pair of shorts on and another t-shirt. He ruffled his hair with the towel trying to dry it off.
I still shivered due to the fact that it was freezing in the house since the power was out. He noticed and walked to the closet and wrapped a blanket around me.
"There." He smiled.
"Thanks." I said graciously.
"Well what now?" He asked.
"First, you have to promise we are never going to do that again." I demanded.
"Promise." He raised his hand up at me.
"Good." I smiled and then jumped at the flash of lightning. To top it all off the wind starting picking up speed. He walked out in the living room and left me in the dark alone. I followed after him. He dug out a candle or two from a drawer and a pack of matches and set them on the table.
He lit the candles and then pulled me down on the couch.
"Better?"
I nodded and rested my head on his chest.

Chapter 32
* And I Know, I’ll Never Change My Ways If I Don’t Give You Up Now. It’s Like I Can’t Breathe.*
̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅̅
"I’m cold." I whined. He looked at me wrapped up in the blanket and then took it from me. I looked at him as he redid it so he was under the blanket too. I smiled, welcoming the extra body heat.
"Thank you." I smiled up at him. I looked at the candle. It was pitch black inside the house besides the candles.
"So what do you want to do?" He wondered, breaking my concentration.
"I don’t know." I was a lot of help. He was silent for a while, thoughtful.
"Do…do you want…kids?" He swallowed.
"Hell no!" I stressed.
He smiled in relief.
"Good. I don’t either." He grinned. The thunder and lightning went off again.
"How does that not bother you?" I hid my head in his chest. I felt him shrug.
"Well I can’t be afraid of the stuff you are. You would be a wreck then wouldn’t you?" He joked. I hit him in the shoulder.
"You’re still talking in your sleep." He said after a while. I was getting the feeling he was trying to annoy me.
"You snore!" I retorted.
"I do not!"
"Yes you do." I said in a sing-song tone. He looked at me and then ripped the blanket off me.
"No! I’m cold!" I whined.
"Nope, nope, nope." He grinned playfully. "Take it back." He told me.
"Fine, you don’t snore." I grabbed for the blanket.
"And…?" He urged.
"And, uh, you’re the best looking man in the world who loves me and wants to give the blanket back." I begged.
"All right." He shared it with me again.
"Thanks." I grumbled. More lightning.
"How long is this going to go on?!" I shouted getting irritated.
"It’s only been half an hour." He explained.
"Ugh."
He pulled me against his chest and rubbed my back with his hand. Shortly after, I fell asleep.
I woke up to darkness. The candles had burned out and it was still pouring rain. I guessed that the power was still out. I quickly realized I was alone.
"Alex?" I panicked.
"I’m right here." He shushed me and sat down. "I called to see when the power would be back on." He paused. "It will probably be on in the morning."
"What time is it?"
"Ten." He answered blankly. I nodded in response.
"Hungry?" He asked. I nodded again.
"Me too." He got up again. I could barely see him walk into the kitchen. I rushed after him.
I heard him look through the cabinet. I had no clue how he knew what he was looking at. He sighed.
"I don’t know." He gave up. I felt around and grabbed an apple. He turned around and opened a drawer. He pulled out a flashlight and turned it on and shone it on me.
"Is that all you ever eat?"
"Mmhm." I said with apple in my mouth. He shook his head and grabbed an apple off the counter and led me back into the living room.

Chapter 33
* It’s Like I Can’t See Anything. Nothing But You. I’m Addicted To You. It’s Like I Can’t Think Without You Interrupting Me.*
³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³³
I woke up to the sunlight streaming in through the glass door in the living room. I was laying on Alex with the blanket over me. He had his arm on my back. I gently lifted his arm off and got up. I put the blanket back over him.
I walked to the kitchen and flipped the light switch on.
It worked!
I reset the clock on the microwave. It was eight in the morning. I decided I would make pancakes for breakfast. I found some chocolate chips and smirked; I should have guessed. I put them in the pancake mix.
I got done and I wasn’t really hungry. I was cold. I put the pancakes on a plate and then made my way to the bathroom. I looked at Alex on my way to the door. He was still asleep.
I took a shower and let the hot water warm me up. I stood there for a while. Eventually, I got out and wrapped a towel around my chest. I wiped the fog off the mirror so I could see.
I walked out to the living room, dressed and warm. He was sitting on the couch eating a couple pancakes. He looked at me and smiled.
"Thank you." He lifted the fork and turned back to the TV. I smiled and went into the kitchen and got a pancake and then went back out to sit next to him.

Later that day Abby called. I grudgingly picked it up.
"What?" I answered irritated.
"Hey. Did you guys loose power last night?" She asked like nothing ever happened.
" Yeah." I remarked.
She was silent for a while.
"So, uh, what’s new?" She asked awkwardly.
"Nothing."
"Oh. Look, listen, about the other day…" She trailed off.
I waited.
"I wanted to apologize for saying all that stuff."
"Uh huh."
"So are we good?" She asked hopeful.
" Yeah, I guess." I sighed.
" Cool. So, do you want to do something today? Eric is out of town for the weekend."
"No. I’m going to stay home today." I answered sharply.
"Oh, uh. Ok then. Well I’ll see you later then."
" ’Kay." I hung up the phone. I felt kind of bad for being such a b**** to her but I felt that she deserved it.
I huffed and closed my eyes and threw the phone.
"Ouch!" I opened my eyes and Alex was rubbing arm.
"Sorry!" I apologized quickly and jumped up and picked the phone up.
"Why are you throwing the phone at me?" He asked jokingly.
"Oh, Abby pissed me off so I threw the phone after I hung up." I grinned. He nodded and kissed me.

Chapter 34
* In My Thoughts. In My Dreams. You’ve Taken Over Me. It’s Like I’m Not Me. It’s Like I’m Not Me*
ùùùùùùùùùùùùùùùùùùùùùù
I sat on the bed reading. With, Alex beside me reading over my shoulder.
"I’m lost." He declared.
"That’s because you have to read the first two books." I informed.
"Oh." He nodded. I put the bookmark in and sat it down on the table next to me.
"I’m bored."
" I’m Alexander." He replied smiling. I chuckled. "Well then what do you want to do?" He continued.
"I don’t know."
"We could go on another hike." He suggested.
"No." I replied quickly. He laughed in response.
We ended up going to see a movie. There was nothing else to do. We sat down in the theater and waited for the movie to start.
"Stop hogging the popcorn." I joked and grabbed a handful of it. "S***." I blurted.
"What?" He looked around.
"Get down." I hushed pointing to Abby and Eric walking in. He copied me and ducked his head out of sight.
"Seirnali ! Hey!" Abby shouted while some people shushed her. She walked up to us. "Hi!" She said once she was up to us.
"…Hey…" I said trying to hide my hate. Alex glared at Eric with malice. Eric shrank back.
"Can we sit next to you?" She asked politely. I looked at Alex and he was still glaring at Eric so he wasn’t really any help.
"Uh, sure." I asked more than stated. She sat down next to me and Eric followed suit.
I leaned away from her inconspicuously. Alex complained in my ear.
"So Seirnali . Have you thought about getting a wedding dress yet?" Abby inquired.
I pulled away from Alex.
"Yeah. I already got one actually." I said sheepishly. She looked at me, incredulous. Shocked.
"Oh. I see then. I thought you were going to ask me to go with you." She confessed disappointedly.
"Yeah. You don’t mind do you?" I asked, pretending to care.
"No. Of course not." She sniffed and then murmured to Eric.
I have no idea why we saw a horror movie. I guess we were that bored. But Abby ended up screaming through half the thing. Alex would roll his eyes every time she screamed. I jumped a couple times.
When the movie ended Alex and I were practically running towards the exit door to get away from Abby and Eric.
"Bye." I said to them before we went out the door. We got into the car and he sighed.
"Are they following us? Because I think they are." He said annoyed.
"Abby is very needy." I informed. He laughed.
"I noticed."

Chapter 35
* I’m Hooked On You. I Need I Fix. I Can’t Take It. Just One More I Hit. I Promise I Can Deal With It.*
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
"Do you have to put whip cream on hot chocolate all the time?" I inquired as he grabbed the whip cream from the fridge.
"Yes. Yes, I do." He shook the can. I rolled my eyes. "Whip cream makes everything taste good." He explained. I raised my eyebrow. He sprayed it on the chocolate and some of it sprayed back on his face. I laughed.
I went up to him and kissed the spots of cream off his face.
"Mm. I see what you mean." I agreed. He smiled. He put some of it on the tip of his finger and dabbed it on my nose. He kissed it off like I did with him. He kissed my lips and then my neck.
"Your hot chocolate’s going to get cold." I pointed out.
"Oh well." He ignored it. I tugged at his shirt. He smirked and pulled away and grabbed my hand.
"What are you doing?" I asked. He ignored me and led me in the bedroom. I stood at the end of the bed as he took his shirt off. I tilted my head to the side. He came back up to be and pushed me on the bed.
He crawled over me and put his hands on either side of my head to hold his weight up. He resumed kissing my neck. He moved his hands causing his weight to fully rest on me.
He somehow managed to unzip the jacket I was wearing and take it off leaving me in just my tank top and jeans. He came back to my lips and slid his hand under my tank top.
I parted my lips and his tongue explored every crevice of my mouth. He pulled away started kissing my collarbone.
He paused only for a second to take my top off and threw in on the ground next to my jacket. Normally, I would object to this.
He went to my hip and kissed slowly all the way up to my neck. He looked up at me. My sight was out of focus because I was breathing so sporadically. He grinned.
Oh my God. That smile! No, focus.
"You have beautiful blue eyes." He whispered unexpectedly. I flushed.
" T…thanks." I stuttered. He kissed me again in response. I kissed him back until he pulled away.
I then noticed that he had grayish blue eyes. I looked at them in awe.
"What?" He asked about my staring.
"Sorry, it’s just your eyes. They’re amazing." I breathed. He smiled sheepishly at me.
He rolled off me and I turned on my side and rested my head on his chest.
"You know, one day, he’s going to leave. And I am going to be there when you break."
I shook the thought out of my head trying not to think of that possibility.
Because I don’t think I could live without him.

 Chapter 36 * I’ll Handle It. Quit It. Just One More Time. Then That’s It. Just A Little Bit More To Get Me Through It.* ¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶¶ "Seirnali ! Look!" Abby shoved her left hand in my face. "What about it?" I asked not really caring. "Look!" She urged. I looked at each finger carefully. I wasn’t really aware of what I was doing. I was lost in thought. "Abby, seriously. Can you just tell me?" I pleaded. She frowned and then replaced it with her gleeful smile. "Eric proposed!" She squealed. I gaped at her. You’ve got to be f*ing kidding me. "Uh, wow." I said in disbelief. There was something wrong. Eric would never propose if his life depended on it. "I know right! Oh, I’m going to have to get a dress and pick out the bridesmaid dresses and I have so much to do." She rambled. " I can’t believe he got me such a beautiful ring." She added smugly, looking at my ring. I smirked. I loved my ring. It was perfect. Modest, but flashy. Well that’s what I thought anyway. "Oh, it was so sweet and romantic! I was so surprised of course. I mean we haven’t been dating that long." She continued blissfully unaware to the malice in my eyes. "So anyhow, what have you been up to?" She asked after a while. "Same old, same old." Venom dripped from each word. She frowned. "I thought you would be more excited about this." She commented disappointedly. "Sorry." I apologized not meaning it. "I have to go." I got up and headed to the door. Eric came down the stairs and stopped me. "Did you want to congratulate me?" He smirked. "Get out of my way asshole." I hissed under my breath. "Jealous?" He taunted. I shoved him in the wall and opened the door and slammed it shut on my way out. I heard her squeal in happiness as I got to the car. "Naïve b****." I muttered as I started the car. I walked in the front door and was greeted by Alex. I smiled. "So what was the big surprise?" He asked referring to Abby’s urgent phone call. "She’s engaged." I waved my hands in the air pretending to be happy and cheerful. He choked on the air. "Seriously?!" He asked in disbelief. I nodded. "She wouldn’t shut up! ‘He was so sweet. The ring is so beautiful.’ Blah, blah, blah." I grimaced. "She is so naïve." He spoke. "That’s exactly what I said."

Chapter 37
* It’s Like I Can’t Breathe. It’s Like I Can’t See Anything. Nothing But You. I’m Addicted To You.*
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Alex went to Jakes house for a little while so I had the house to myself. I was excruciatingly bored. However, Abby called me and wanted me to go wedding dress shopping with her.
A little soon…?
I reluctantly agreed.
We walked into the store from where I got my dress and she grabbed my hand and pulled me toward the dresses. The clerk asked her is she needed help and she declined. She pulled three or five out off the rack and slung them over her out held arm.
I watched her try on the first one. It was a simple white one.
I got the prettiest one.
"What do you think?" She asked my opinion. I smirked.
"It’s kind of cliché ." I answered honestly. She frowned and went to put on another one.
I sighed and leaned against the wall. I wondered what Alex was doing at the moment.
She came back out in a better looking one. Less plain.
"How about this one?"
"Better." I smiled.
She put on three others and picked the second one. She ended up putting it on layaway. Then she went to the bridesmaid dresses.
"Ok. I want purple dresses." She giddied.
I blanched. I hated the color purple with a passion. I looked horrible in it. She didn’t seem to notice. She grabbed possibly the most hideous purple dress she could find and held it up to me. I scowled.
"If you’re thinking about having me wearing that, I will not come." I spat.
"Fine." She said passively.
She ended up looking at a midnight blue one with black embroidery on it. I didn’t mind it as much. She gave up and we left the store so she could think about it. I walked slowly behind her.
She finally drove me home and I pretty much ran to the door. He still wasn’t home. I looked at my cell phone. I had only been gone for an hour and a half. I sighed, frustrated and sat down on the couch.
I waited patiently until he got home. He finally walked through the door and hour or two later.
"Hey." I jumped up and hugged him.
"Hi." He greeted, hugging me back. "How are you?"
"Good, I guess. Abby drug me to go look at wedding dresses with her. She has horrible taste." I complained.
He smiled but it wasn’t his usual smile.
"Something wrong?" I asked him once he was in the bedroom. He looked at me with a blank expression.
"No." He answered quickly and smiled again.
Something’s wrong…

Chapter 38
*It’s Like I Can’t Think, Without You Interrupting Me. In My Thoughts. In My Dreams. You’ve Taken Over Me.*
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Alex’s strange behavior continued. It was starting to worry me. Extremely so at that. I would ask him if something was bugging him or if something was wrong. It was always the same reply.
No.
I didn’t want to annoy him, so I tried not to ask him to much. He wasn’t depressed or anything like that. He was just acting weird. Like he was dreading something or he was in pain.
I was starting to think that it was me. If I did something. I couldn’t think of anything though.
"I love you. You know that right?" He would constantly ask and tell me for the past few days. I would nod in response and then he would hug me or kiss me.
I tried to shrug it off. Thinking maybe it was just something that was on his mind and it was going to pass in a couple days.
I went to bed that night a little annoyed. But I was more frightened than anything. He got in next to me and pulled me against his chest. He pushed the hair away from neck and kissed it softly.
I closed my eyes.
"Seriously, Alex. What’s wrong?" I asked again.
"Nothing. You’re tired. Get some sleep." He said somewhat pained.
I swallowed loudly and tried to go to sleep. I was on the brink of falling asleep when he whispered in my ear.
"I love you."
I wanted to reply, but I fell asleep.
I love you too.

Chapter 39
*It’s Like I’m Not Me. It’s Like I’m Not Me…*
ÐÐÐÐÐÐÐÐÐÐÐÐÐÐÐ

I don’t really know how to say this. First, I love you more than anything. I mean that. With all my heart.
But, I don’t think I’m good for you. You should be with someone who doesn’t hoard you to himself.
You can stay at the house. Keep it. Whatever you want.
I swear to God.

I know everyone says this.

But it’s not you.

I just want you to be happy. I know that you’re happy with me now, but I don’t think it will last. I promise I will never bug you. I’ll stay out of your life.
I know you probably hate me now. I understand.
I don’t know what else to say really.
So I guess I’ll end it here.
I love you. So much. You’ll be ok.
I love you, more than anything.
-Alex.

Chapter 40
*…Louder. Louder. The Voices In My Head. Whispers Taunting, All The Things You Said.*
SSSSSSSSSSSSS
I stared at the letter. Numb. I folded it back up and shoved it in my pocket. I stood there. Motionless, in the middle of the living room.
I wasn’t angry.
I wasn’t sad.
I wasn’t…anything.
I was empty. Numb.
I felt my whole body go cold. I couldn’t breathe. I could feel my eyes prickling with the tears. I held them back.
I couldn’t feel anything.
I couldn’t hear anything except my world falling apart to pieces.
I felt my legs start to weaken under the weight of my body. I fell against the wall and slid down to the ground. I pulled my legs against my chest and laid down on my side.
I tried to remember how to breathe.
I pushed away the pain that tugged at my heart. I had to stay above the surface of it all.
‘Love, Life, Meaning. Over.’
I closed my eyes tightly.
The pain pulled me under.
I couldn’t resurface.
‘You’ll be ok.’
I nodded my head numbly and let the darkness overtake me.

Chapter 41
* Faster The Days Go By. And I’m Still Stuck In This Moment Of Wanting You Here.*
ÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚÚ
I woke up to the phone ringing. I thought it was just all a horrible nightmare.
It wasn’t.
I stayed there on the cold floor and let the machine pick it up.
"Seirnali . It’s Abby. You haven’t picked up your cell phone all day and I’ve called the house like ten times and you’re not answering. So, call me back."
I weakly got to my feet. I didn’t want to call her back. I didn’t want to talk to anyone but him. I pulled the note out of my pocket and memorized it. Word for word.
I made my way to the bed and collapsed. I looked at the clock. It was ten at night. I had laid there on the floor for fourteen hours. I shuddered.
I was so cold.
I took a shower to see if it would help.
It didn’t.
I crawled back under the covers and rested my head on his pillow. I closed my eyes again.
My cell phone rang and I grabbed it to see who it was. I was hoping it was him so I could hear his voice.
It was Abby. I placed it back on the table.
I was surprised I wasn’t crying. But I didn’t feel like crying. I was empty. Dead inside.
I heard the phone in the kitchen ring again.
"Seirnali ! Where the hell are you!? I’m getting worried. You aren’t answering the phone. I’m coming over." She explained worriedly.
I waited for her to run in and find me drowning in depression.
I saw the headlights of her car shine through the window and then go off. She turned to door knob and came in without knocking.
"Seirnali ?" She called out warily.
I didn’t reply. I didn’t know how.
She walked in the bedroom and gasped.
"Oh my God. Seirnali . What’s wrong?"
Silence.
"Seirnali ?!" She shook me. I stared at the table, empty.
"What happened?!" She shouted. She spotted the paper clutched in my hand. She unwrapped my fingers and took it carefully. She silently read it to herself.
"F***…" She trailed off and placed it on the table. I grabbed it and grasped it tightly in my hand again.
"What…when…what happened?" She stuttered.
No reply.
"Seirnali . Tell me." I didn’t look at her.
I tuned her out and went to a less painful place.
"Can I?" He asked gently. I was confused.
"Can you what?" I asked my voice shaking.
Instead of answering me, he bent his head down and pressed his lips against mine. He didn’t move. Waiting for my reaction. I was frozen with fear and shock. I didn’t do anything.
He continued to kiss me and I continued to panic. Half of me wanted to kiss him back but the other half of me was telling me to push him off me and call the police. Of course, I wasn’t going to resort to the latter option.
I was going to go with the first option but I didn’t really know how. So I just laid there, frozen with panic.
After a few more seconds, his kiss became more intense and he moved his mouth down to my neck. I couldn’t think straight and my breathing became sporadic.
"Seirnali ! Answer me damn it!" She demanded.
I glanced at her and then returned my dead stare to the table.
She let out a loud sigh.
"Fine. Whatever. If you don’t want to talk, I don’t care." She complained. "I’ll come check on you in the morning." She slammed the bedroom door shut and left me to my memories.

Chapter 42
*Time, In The Blink Of An Eye. You Held My Hand. You Held Me Tight.*
OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
"She won’t talk to me! I kept asking her but she just ignores me!" Abby shouted to my mom who was in the living room with her.
"Well, you just got to be patient with her Abby." She soothed as she walked to the bedroom.
"Seirnali , sweetie, you want something to eat?" She asked sweetly.
I didn’t nod or shake my head. I didn’t want to eat. She frowned at my lack of response. She sighed and went back to Abby.
"She’s really torn up about it." She noted to Abby.
"Yeah, it’s five times worse then what happened with Eric."
I thought back to the three months. I was depressed. But I ate. I talked. I moved. I cried.
I took in a sharp breath of air. It almost hurt to breathe.
"What a bastard. I mean leave her months before they get married?! Jeez." Abby commented.
I clinched my teeth. I loved him still and I wanted to kill Abby for calling him that, but I didn’t move.
"What are we going to do with her?"
" I guess we should just wait it out. And in the meantime, we can just come back once a day or so to check on her." My mom sighed.
"Yeah, I guess." Abby agreed.
I didn’t need to be checked on. I wanted to be left alone. I grabbed my cell phone. I flipped it open and winced.
I looked at the picture that he took of us.

"Taking a picture." He answered. "Smile." He told me. I did so as he took the picture. He pressed a few more buttons and gave it back to me.
I opened it again to see that he put the picture as the background.
"It’s beautiful." I laughed. He got up and went into the kitchen and then sat back down next to me.
I could remember it all so vividly. I smiled a very small smile.
I love you. So much. You’ll be ok.
I looked at the note. I wanted to believe that but I knew…
I wasn’t going to be ok.

Chapter 43
*Now You’re Gone, And I’m Still Crying. Shocked, Broken, I’m Dying Inside. Inside.*
??????????????????????????????
I lost track of the days. Abby came over every day for five minutes and then left. I could tell how pissed she was getting with me. But I didn’t care.
Then one day Anna came to check on me. To my great surprise. She brought the demon children with her.
"Seirnali !" Katrina yelled as she ran up to me. I didn’t look at her or flinch like I usually do. James followed closely behind her.
"Seirnali ?" Anna spoke softly. I wanted to talk to her. She was probably the only other person that I would talk to, but I didn’t.
"Where’s your ring?!" James asked frantically looking at the engagement ring that replaced his. I brought my hand under the pillow so it was out of sight.
Anna sat down next to me and brushed the hair out of my face.
"What’s wrong with her mommy?" The kids asked in unison. I glanced at her to see what she would say.
"Nothing, she’s just sick." She slightly smiled at me.
I looked back at the wall.
"Why don’t you two go watch TV?" She urged them
They ran off to the living room and turned it on to the cartoons. She returned her attention to me.
"Honey, you need to eat." She pressed. I hadn’t eaten in a couple days. I didn’t react. She got up and came back with a cut up apple and placed it in front of me. I looked at it. I grabbed a piece to satisfy her.
She smiled again.
She pulled the torn piece of paper from my hands and read it like everyone else did. She gave it back to me and briefly rubbed my arm. She got back up and went to the living room.
"Come on James, Kat. Let’s go." She told them.
"We want to stay with Seirnali !" They argued.
"No. She’s sick." She demanded and then rushed them out the door and left.
I put the half eaten apple slice on the plate. I pulled the covers over my head and fell asleep.

Chapter 44
*Where Are You? I Need You! Don’t Leave Me Here On My Own. Speak To Me. Be Near Me. I Can’t Survive Unless I Know You’re With Me!*
hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
The gaping hole was starting to sting.
I got up and stumbled into the kitchen and opened all the cupboards. There had to be something to stop the pain for at least a little while.
I opened one of the cupboards and found a half full bottle of whiskey. I grabbed it and threw the cap off and took a long drink of it.
It burned my throat. I winced and shook my head. I sat down on the floor and let the burning sensation in my throat calm down.
I took another sip.
After a bit, the pain started to ebb away. I was dizzy. The pain was still there, but I couldn’t feel it.
Another drink.
I knew that this wasn’t the solution to my problems. But, I didn’t care. It was a momentary escape.
I rested on my side with my cheek pressed against the cold tile. I rested the quarter full bottle in front of my head.
Then, I blacked out.
"Seirnali ?" He tapped me on the nose.
I snapped my jaw shut and shook my head quickly.
"Huh?" I asked dumbly. He laughed.
"What are you getting?" He repeated.
"Oh uh, I don’t know…what are you getting?" I asked.
"That." He pointed to a picture of a waffle covered in whip cream and other sweets. He grinned at me.
"I’ll just get that too then." I stated. He cleared his throat after the waiter took our orders and left.
"So, what were you looking at?" He asked cheekily. I blinked a couple times.
"It’s very distracting when you don’t button your shirt all the way." I blurted and grabbed a crayon that was sitting on the table and started drawing on the napkin. I looked up at him briefly to see that condescending smile on his lips.
"Seirnali ! Oh, God, Seirnali wake up!" Someone was shaking me relentlessly.
I slowly opened my eyes, everything was blurred.
"Seirnali ! Eric, she’s not waking up! Call 911!" Abby screeched.
"She’s fine Abby. Look, her eyes are open." He said, clearly annoyed.
"Oh thank God!" She relieved. I closed my eyes again. My head was thAlexbing.
"Seirnali ! What’s wrong with you!? You know you shouldn’t drink!" She reprimanded. "Come on lets get you back to the bedroom. Eric help me."
They picked me up and dropped me on the bed. I crawled back to my spot on the bed and got back under the covers.
"Seirnali , you can’t drink like this. Ok. I’m putting this away." She was talking to me like I was a child. She walked back to the door and Eric.
"That’s kind of pathetic." Eric commented.
"Eric, don’t." She shushed.

Chapter 45
*Shadows Linger, Only To My Eye. I See You, I Feel You. Don’t Leave My Side. It’s Not Fair.*
```````````````````````````
I was cold. Still.
I crawled out of the bed and made my way to the shower.
Warmth.
I turned it on and watched the mirror fog up. I stepped into the shower and I stood there, waiting for the warm water to soothe me. I shivered.
I stayed in the shower for a very long time. I figured that the hot water wasn’t helping and stepped out. I grabbed a towel and wrapped it around my chest.
I did my hair in a ponytail and put on a pair of jeans and a long sleeved shirt in my attempt to stay warm.
The covers of the bed weren’t any source for heat at all. It was always cold. Everything was cold.
I looked at the clock. Usually, someone would be coming to check on me to see if I was still alive. I would have finished off the bottle of whiskey but I didn’t know where Abby hid it.
I sat up so my back was up against the headboard. I looked at the wall in front of me.
The front door opened.
Eric walked in.
Without Abby.
I thought that was kind of weird. He walked into the bedroom and looked at me.
"Well, well, well. What did I tell you. I said he was going to leave you and I was right! Hmm. Imagine that." He smirked.
If he was trying to hurt me. It was futile. I was unable to be hurt any further.
He waited for me to say something. I didn’t. He scowled.
"So, Abby and I are getting married. The funny thing is, I don’t really like her that much. No one would ever compare to you though. She’s a good kisser though." He said smugly.
I ignored him and continued to numbly stare at the wall. He frowned at my lack of response.
"So, Abby told me to come check on you." He crawled on top of me and his face was inches away. I didn’t flinch. I didn’t care anymore. My life was screwed up as is. It couldn’t get worse.
He brushed the hair away from my neck and kissed the exposed skin. I just stared at the wall.
Empty.
Dead.
Cold.
Broken.
He kept kissing me. I didn’t do anything. He pulled back and looked at me.
"Why aren’t you putting up a fight?!" He complained.
I looked at the wall, again. Still.
He tilted his head to the side and tapped my cheek. He got off me and punched me in the shoulder.
"What’s wrong with you!?" He shouted. " You’re such a wreck! I mean isn’t it obvious!? He’s not coming back! Obviously, he doesn’t like you!" He headed towards the door.
He scoffed and slammed the door shut.

Chapter 46
*Just When I Found My World, They Took You, They Broke You, They Tore Out You’re Heart. I Miss You. You Hurt Me. You Left With A Smile.*
dddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddd
I woke up in the morning rather pleasantly. It was warm. I brushed the hair out of my face and put my hand back on the bed. I heard a muffled laugh and opened my eyes.
I had my head on his chest and my hand laying across his stomach. Within five seconds I gasped in shock and pushed myself off and wound up falling onto the floor. He looked over the edge at me and laughed.
"Morning!" He tried to hold back his laughing. I scowled at him and got myself up off the cold floor.
"Shut up." I muttered. He stopped laughing but his amused little smile stayed. I rolled my eyes and walked into the bathroom and did my hair. I obviously couldn’t brush my teeth so I grabbed a piece of gum from my pocket and popped it into my mouth and walked back into the room to grab my shirt. He was still laying in bed.
"Com here." He patted the empty space next to him. I looked at him.
I woke up. I had dreams about him every night. It was somewhat comforting. But at the same time, it was painful.
I became motivated to look for the whiskey again. I pushed away the covers and sauntered into the kitchen, presuming she didn’t take it with her when she left. I looked through all the cupboards and started at the drawers.
After much looking, I finally found it in the closet that was never used. I grabbed it and tried to twist the cap off. Eric must have put it back on. I was getting frustrated, seeing that I was to weak to twist it off.
Grabbing a knife from the kitchen, I started cutting away at the plastic neck of the bottle. It fell off and I threw it in the garbage can and put the knife away. I hesitated, looking at the jagged edge of the plastic but I didn’t hesitate long.
I drank half of what was rest. Seconds after, vertigo hit me. I fell to the ground and leaned against the doorway and sighed.
I honestly didn’t know how much longer this could go on.
I looked at the bottle again and ran my finger over the sharp edge of the freshly cut opening. After the burning in my throat died down I put the bottle back up to my lips.
I didn’t tip the bottle so that the liquid would go down my throat. I figured I would keep the rest of what was left.
Just in case.
Making my way to the bedroom, I shoved the bottle in the little compartment in the nightstand so that no one would notice. I felt dizzy again so I sat down.
My head fell on the pillow and the pain, and everything else, left my conscious. I tried to fight against the blackout that I knew was coming, but I gave in and I closed my eyes again.

Chapter 47
*Mistaken Your Sadness Was Hiding Inside. Now All That’s Left Are The Pieces To Find. The Mystery You Kept The Soul Behind A Guise. Inside Me.*
íííííííííííííííííííííííííí
I felt someone picking me up. I didn’t bother opening my eyes. I didn’t care. I was dropped abruptly onto the couch in the living room. I opened my eyes.
My dad and mom were standing in front of me. My dad was clearly angered by something.
"Alcohol!? You resort to alcohol!? Seriously!? Seirnali , look I know you’re depressed and all but you don’t need to resort to this." He yelled holding the cut up bottle of whiskey in his hand.
My mom sighed in the chair and looked at me sympathetically.
"This is just getting out of hand Seirnali . It’s been two weeks and you have barely eaten. You won’t talk. You don’t move. All you do is sit here and sulk! It’s…I can’t watch you kill yourself like this." He softened.
I winced.
My head was hurting again and all this yelling sure as hell wasn’t helping me at all.
"Seirnali , your dad’s right. You need to start doing something. Anything." My mom added quietly.
Why the hell would they care? I was my own person now, and if this is how I wanted to deal with this, then this is how I would deal with this.
They waited in silence for my reaction. I didn’t know what they were expecting.

I pulled my legs up to my chest and rested my chin on my knees. I closed my eyes and bit my lip, waiting for the pain in my head to go away.
"How much have you drank?!" My dad shouted again. I turned my head slightly into the pillow that was laying on the couch. Out of view.
He waited and tapped his foot repetitively.
Nothing.
"Mike, maybe we should leave her alone. Ok? I don’t think she wants to talk to anyone right now." My mom spoke.
"No. Ok. No! She needs to get over this and get on with her life. I mean, Seirnali ," He looked at me now. "Alexander’s not coming back."
I winced at the sound of his name.
He sighed in frustration and set the bottle back down on the table.
"Fine. You know what, you want to act like this. Go ahead. I don’t care if you want to drown in liquor and depression." He started shouting again.
I had noticed how everyone stopped caring about me. I wondered if they just didn’t care or if they didn’t have the patience to wait for me to heal. Granted, it would take a while, but maybe. Maybe, I would get there someday.
But, I doubt it.
They left.
Just like everyone else would do.
Was it to much to ask? To be understanding? To be patient? To wait?
To love me?
I didn’t need to be fixed. I didn’t need to be found.
I wasn’t lost.
I needed to be loved.

Chapter 48
*Where Are You? I Need You! Don’t Leave Me Here On My Own. Speak To Me. Be Near Me. I Can’t Survive Unless I Know You’re With Me.*
¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹¹
How long could one person take this?
The pain? The misery? The solitude?
I knew I needed to get back up on my feet and move on with my life. But everywhere I went, it hurt. Every memory taunting me. I still had no desire to talk to anyone. I had gone without talking for three weeks now.
I wandered out into the living room and turned the TV on and grabbed a blanket. I curled up on the couch and closed my eyes, listening to the TV.
" See, it’s not that scary." He whispered in my ear and pointed to the small spider on the tree in the woods behind his house.
"Yes it is!" I objected. He sighed, defeated.
"We have to get you over this fear of spiders." He had his arms around my waist and was standing behind me.
It moved up the tree and I winced.
"No. I. Don’t." I said slowly.
"Fine." He rolled his eyes dramatically.
"Come on let’s go. It’s freaking me out!" I turned around. He laughed. I loved his laugh.
"Well then, what do you want to do?" He asked his common question.
"What do you want to do?" I asked him this time. He smiled alluringly and grabbed my waist.
"Oh, I could think of some things I would want to do." He grinned and he placed his hand under my shirt.
"Really now?" I smirked. He nodded slowly.
I woke up and looked at the TV. I grabbed the remote and changed the channel. Not that I was really watching it anyway.
I remembered that day. I smiled inwardly. I thought about calling him. Or something, but I had guessed that he had already found a new girlfriend and had forgotten about me.
While I sat here, drowning in self pity and whiskey. Of course, I was hoping that maybe he was thinking about me from time to time. I read his note. I knew that he loved me. I knew that.
But part of me was stuck in this frame of mind that he had moved on. Sure, there were better girls out there. Much better ones. Maybe he had gotten back together with one of his exes. Like the one he was going to propose to the night she dumped him.
I looked at the ring he gave me. I was still going to wear it no matter what.
"Close your eyes." He shouted from the room. I did so and relaxed on the couch. I heard him come back in the room and sit next to me. He grabbed my hand and pulled it towards him.
"Now, I know it’s not as high priced as the one you got last night but…" He trailed off jokingly. He slipped a ring on my finger and I opened my eyes to look at it.
It was silver with a simple little diamond on it. It was perfect. I wasn’t much for those big flashy rocks.
"I don’t know. I mean I thought I would get you a nice little engagement ring you know." He looked down at his feet.
"Oh my God Alex! It’s perfect! I love it! I really do! Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you!" I shouted breathlessly. I hugged him tightly.
"It’s not that great. Really. I mean it’s just a little ring." He told me confused by reaction.
I pulled back and grinned.
"No. I love it! Really! Thank you!" I contradicted. He smiled, pleased.
"Yeah, yeah, yeah." He replied. "And, thank you for my gift!" He picked it back up.
I wanted to cry.
So badly.
But.
I didn’t.

Chapter 49 * Why Did You Go? All These Questions Run Through My Mind. Let Me Be Numb. I’m Starting To Fall. To Fall Apart.* I wouldn’t say that I was getting better. No. I was getting worse. Torturing myself with all the memories. Every single one. Every second. Every Minute. Every Hour. Every Day. Every Night. It may have made me ‘happy’. If you want to call it that. But it was a masochistic type of happy. Every one else noticed. They thought I was happy at first. But I wasn’t. I was sick. Not physically. Not crazy, no. I wasn’t crazy. I acted the same, but worse. I was just more depressed because I was killing the loneliness with what was. It wasn’t good. I could hear his voice in my head. I could close my eyes and see him. Anna was the most worried out of them all. She was the only one that still even cared about me. The others tried to care. But they didn’t want to anymore. I was beginning to think that everyone was…scared of me. Like they were afraid that they would hurt me. Or if they said one thing, I would snap. I finished off the bottle of whiskey. A majority of it all was the fact that I was obsessed with him coming back. Everyone kept telling me that he wasn’t. I didn’t want to believe it. I ignored them. He would come back. He had to come back. Eric and Abby rarely would stay long. Abby was apparently making plans for her wedding. She seemed to mock me with it. "I thought you were going to beat me to the alter. But, looks like that’s not going to happen. I think I’m going to have it in May. I could just take you’re wedding date. I mean it’s already reserved." She mocked. "Shut up!" I smacked his arm. My mom walked out and stopped at end of the couch. " I need to tell you something." She said anxiously. "What?" "Well, see, your wedding date was June first but it got changed to May first. I hope that’s ok…" She waited for a response. I was honestly ok with it. I didn’t know what he thought though. "Great! That’s good!" He was beaming. My mom sighed with relief. "Ok. Good. That has been bugging me for weeks!" She walked back into the kitchen. I looked at him. He looked back at me and kissed me on the cheek. All right then. Everything. Everything brought up a memory. I’m going to f*ing kill her. I hate her. Why can’t she just shut the hell up!? She left after a few minutes and Eric would wink at me. I still had my empty stares at the wall. Or the side of the table by the bed. It was never going to end. Was it?

Chapter 50
* Where Are You? I Need You. Don’t Leave Me Here On My Own. Speak To Me. Be Near Me. I Can’t Survive Unless I Know You’re With Me.*
‘ The broken clock is a comfort. It helps me sleep tonight. Maybe it can’t stop tomorrow, from stealing all my time.
And I am here, still waiting. Though I still have my doubts. I am damaged at best, like you’ve already figured out.
I’m falling apart. I’m barely breathing. With a broken heart. That’s still beating. In the pain, there is healing. In your name, I find meaning.
So, I’m holding on. I’m holding on. I’m holding on.
I’m barely holding onto you.
The broken locks were a warning. You got inside my head. I tried my best to be guarded, but I’m an open book instead.
And I still see your reflection, inside of my eyes. That are looking for purpose, they’re still looking for life.
I’m falling apart. I’m barely breathing. With a broken heart. That’s still beating. In the pain, there is healing. In your name, I find meaning.
So I’m holding on. I’m still holding. I’m holding on. I’m still holding. I’m holding on. I’m still holding.
I’m barely holding onto you.
I’m hanging on, another day. Just to see what, you will throw my way. And I’m hanging on, to the words you say.
You said that I will be ok.
The broken lights on the freeway, left me here alone, I may have lost my way now. Having forgotten my way home.
I’m falling apart. I’m barely breathing. With a broken heart. That’s still beating. In the pain, there is healing. In your name, I find meaning.
So I’m holding on. I’m still holding. I’m holding on. I’m still holding. I’m holding on. I’m still holding.
I’m barely holding onto you.
I’m holding on. I’m still holding.
I’m holding on. I’m still holding.
I’m holding on. I’m still holding.
I’m barely holding onto you!’
I had been thinking about that song a lot lately. I was standing in the shower, mouthing the lyrics to myself over and over again. I shivered at how much it reminded me of what I was going through.
I stepped out of the shower. The mirror was fogged up so I couldn’t see anything. I was still mouthing the words while I got dressed. It was ten at night.
I put on a pair of jean shorts and a tank-top. I left my hair down. It was long and dripping with hot water.
I looked at myself in the mirror. I was so pale.
I looked away quickly. I put my cell phone back in my pocket. It was the only piece of sanity I had left.

I walked out and glanced at the living room. Abby, Eric, my mom, my dad, and Anna were all sitting in the living room.
I warily walked out to the room and my mom looked at me.
"Can we talk to you for a minute?"

Chapter 51 *Where Are You? I Can’t Survive Unless I Know You’re With Me…* I nodded slowly and I stood there, watching them. "Seirnali , don’t be offended by this. But, we think you need help." My mom started. Ah, an intervention. I didn’t want to understand. I shook my head sluggishly. She frowned. "Seirnali , you aren’t getting over this. You’re getting worse. You aren’t dealing with this like you should." Abby broke in. I looked at her. I could feel that pained expression make its way back to my face. " ‘Seri. He’s not coming back." My dad spoke softly, looking at me desperately. "He’s not honey." My mother added. I got a very confused expression on my face. "No." My voice cracked since I hadn’t used it in the past four weeks. "Seirnali ! You need to talk to someone about this! This isn’t normal! You need professional help!" My dad started shouting at me again. "No." I repeated again. Inaudibly. "When the hell are you going to realize that he’s not coming back!? He’s gone! For good! You need to move on!" Abby joined the shouting at me. My mom grabbed my arm and started pulling me towards the couch. I ripped my arm out of her grasp. "No! Ok! No! Just leave me alone!" I shouted. "He’s…he is going to come back." I whispered for myself. "Seirnali , please let us help you. We found a great doctor…" She trailed off. A doctor? A f*ing doctor?! "Just leave me alone!" I said again. I ran out the door and slammed it shut. It was pouring down rain. I ran down the sidewalk with the tears I held back all month spilling over. I didn’t know how far I had ran. I didn’t care. I couldn’t take it anymore. I wanted it to be over. Gone. My cell phone rang and I ripped it out of my pocket and answered it without looking who it was. "What?!" I shouted. "Seirnali , get back here right now! It’s pouring down rain and you’re in shorts and a tank top! You’re going to get sick!" My mom yelled. "I don’t care!" I retorted. Crying. "Seirnali ! Look at yourself! He’s not coming back! Move on!" She repeated. I had heard enough of it all. "Just shut the f*** up! Quit telling me that! I’m not a f*ing child anymore! Why the hell do you even care anyway!?" I was practically screaming into the phone now. "Seirnali …" She trailed off. "No! I give up! I can’t f*ing take all this s*** anymore! I just can’t do it anymore! I quit! I can’t f*ing do this anymore!" I sounded like some crazy person. "Seirnali ! What are you doing?! Where are you!?" She was concerned now. I didn’t answer this time. I shut the phone and threw it across the road. I watched the flimsy piece of plastic break into a million little pieces on the pavement. It was gone. That little piece of sanity. Broken. Just like me. I stood there. Crying. I collapsed onto the ground. The puddles of water splashed up against me. I was cold already, I didn’t feel anything. I was completely drenched in the rain. My face was wet from all the tears. I just wanted it to end. Whatever worked. Just be over. I sobbed relentlessly. I bit my lip, trying to compose myself. I gave up. It wasn’t going to work. "Seirnali …?" I heard someone call my name but I didn’t respond. I heard running. "Oh, God, Seirnali . I’m so sorry." He was on the ground next to me, brushing the hair out of my eyes. I looked up. Ok, I was officially crazy. "Alex…?" I looked at him. I was pretty sure I was seeing things. But I would take it nevertheless. He sort of smiled. "I’m so sorry." He whispered. He pulled me onto his lap and I sobbed into his chest. He stood up and I was still leaning against him. Crying. He pulled me back and looked at me. "I love you. So much. I’m so sorry." He repeated. I nodded and hugged him again. I wanted to be happy. I did. But part of me kept telling myself that he was going to leave again. That this was some horrible coincidence. Or a horrible nightmare. I would wake up and have to go through another day without him. I wasn’t cold anymore. Standing there, with him holding me. I welcomed the warmth that had left me for so long. I missed hearing him, holding him. But I knew this would make it worse if, when, he left again. I didn’t care. I wasn’t going to waste the time I was allotted. I wanted to say something. But, I couldn’t stop crying long enough to get a word out. I looked up at him. It looked like he was crying, but I couldn’t tell if it was the rain or not. I could smell the strong aroma of alcohol on his breath. I eventually composed myself. Somewhat anyway. I lessened the crying and just held him. I shivered. The rain was starting to get to me. "You want to go home?" He whispered. I simply nodded. I didn’t want to move though. He picked me up and I wrapped my arms around his neck and started crying again. I must have fallen asleep, because the next thing I knew there was a lot of accusing shouts. My eyes fluttered open and I saw my dad standing in front of me. I blinked a couple of times. "What the hell is wrong with you!? I can’t believe you even have the nerve to come back here after what you did to her!" My dad tried to pull me onto the ground. I turned my head away from him and clutched onto Alex’s shirt in defiance. "Please, just let her lay down." Alex begged. My dad sighed and let him go. He walked into the bedroom and unlatched my hands off his shirt. He rested me on the bed and got up and headed back to the living room to talk to my dad. "Don’t go." I pleaded, my voice breaking. He looked at me with immediate concern and hushed me. "I’ll be right back. I promise." He swore and kissed my forehead. I panicked as he went to the door and quietly closed it. "What is wrong with you!?" My dad roared. He waited. "I apologize sir. Really, I do. But, it’s a long story and I really didn’t think this would happen…" He trailed off somberly. "Do you have any idea what she was like?!" "Believe me, I wasn’t gala banding around town. I’m sorry. Really I am. I swear, if she doesn’t want me back, I’ll leave and never bother your family again. I just… I…" "I don’t care if she wants you to stay or not! This isn’t about her anymore. The whole family had to put up with all that s***. She was drinking herself to death. She wasn’t eating. Or talking. We don’t have time to deal with that every single minute. We have better things to do than wonder if she was still even alive when she was alone." My dad complained. I was a bit taken back. I knew that I wasn’t a joy to be around, but it sounded like he didn’t even care about me. Like none of them did anymore. Except Anna though. She loved me. "Sir, I love your daughter. More than anything. I can’t imagine ever being without her again. She’s my world." He responded softly. I almost couldn’t hear him. "And, I’m sorry that the fact that she needed her family was an inconvenience to you and your family." He raised his voice. " Maybe, if you’re lucky, we can go get married in Vegas and then we can move and you’ll never have to f*ing deal with us again!" He was infuriated. I had never heard him yell at someone before. It was kind of scary. My dad was silent for a minute. "Are you saying that I don’t care about her?" He contradicted. " That’s what it’s sounding like to me! God forbid you help her! Take an hour out of your day and be with her at least!" "We tried to be with her. She wouldn’t talk to us and she ignored us and she was drinking all the time and it was frustrating." Abby supported my dad. "Oh shut the hell up Abby. You don’t give a s*** about her. All you care about is that bastard you’re about to marry. So don’t you tell me that you’re her friend and then b**** about her." He sounded different when he was yelling. Standing up for me. "You don’t have the right to yell at my husband like that." My mom joined. Alex laughed darkly and briefly. " Don’t think for a minute that I’m buying that bloody act of kindness and sympathy you put on." My mom scoffed. " Who the hell do you think you are? I mean you come in here and--" My dad was cut off. "Why don’t you just get the hell out of my house. All of you. I don’t want to hear another f*ing word out of your mouth." His tone softened. "Except you Anna. You can stay. I have nothing against you. You’re probably the only one here who actually cares about her." He muttered. "You--" My dad started. "Get. Out." Alex said sharply and coldly. I heard my parents and Abby and Eric leave. I didn’t know if Anna left. "I should get back to the kids." Anna spoke up softly after everyone had left. I didn’t hear a reply. "You really do love her, don’t you?" She asked from the doorway. "More than you can imagine."

Chapter 52
*…How Long Have I Been In This Storm? So Overwhelmed By The Ocean’s Shapeless Form. Water’s Getting Harder To Tread. With These Waves Crashing Over My Head.*
ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ
He quietly opened the door and looked at me. Drenched from head to toe. I ran up to him and hugged him tightly. He wrapped his arms around me and placed his lips on my wet hair. I bit my lip so I wouldn’t cry again. I would only be crying out of happiness though.
"I’m so sorry. You have no idea. And I know you will never know how sorry I am." He swallowed. I shook my head. " I don’t know what I was thinking. I just, I thought that you would be better off without me. I was holding you back from so much and I…" He trailed off.
I shook my head again.
"No. I, I don’t care. I don’t care why you left or anything else." I closed my eyes tightly. "Just promise you won’t leave." I said quietly, my voice breaking.
"I will never leave you." He promised. He picked me up again and laid down next to me on the bed. I turned around so that I could bury my head in his chest.
"Where were you?" I asked curiously.
"Jake’s. And a hotel. Wallowing in self pity and depression." He answered quietly. I pulled my head back so I could really look at him.
He had dark circles under his eyes. His eyes were on the brink of being bloodshot. Haggard. My memories had done him little justice. His gray eyes were more on the blue side.
The tips of his fingers brushed my cheekbone.
"You look tired." He commented. I shook my head.
"How did you know where I was?" All these questions kept popping in my head.
He smiled halfheartedly.
"I was actually coming over to beg you to take me back. Then, when I knocked and Abby answered the door, I thought maybe you would be in the living room but you weren’t. I asked her where you were and she got all pissed and told me that you ran off a few minutes ago and they had no idea where you were. I figured you had gone the other way that I came so I went looking for you."
"When I saw you, on the ground. It was…excruciating to see." He paused. "Seirnali , I’m so sorry. Really, I am. I don’t know how to make it up to you. If you don’t want me around I understand. I feel so guilty and so horrible. I just. Hell, I don’t know what I was thinking. I wanted to call you, but I didn’t want to upset you. I didn’t know if you would be mad at me or hate me or if you had another boyfriend or what." His words came out in a rush. I put my index finger on his lips.
"I don’t care." I recited.
His eyes softened and he smiled.
" I’m so sorry though. I’ll get down on my knees and beg for you to forgive me if that would make you happy." He smiled, but his tone was serious.
"No. I don’t want you to beg. I forgive you. Really. I do." I repeated. I laughed bitterly and sat up. He looked at me concerned.
"What?" He sat up so he was looking directly at me.
"Nothing, this just…It feels like a dream. Like I’m going to wake up and it will all be gone." I smiled. Subdued.
He frowned at the sad tone in my voice.
"I’ll prove that I’m here. And that it’s not some horrible dream." He added, slightly smiling. He placed his left hand on my cheek. Before I could say anything, his mouth was pressed against mine. His other hand knotted its self in my hair. My hands memorized every detail of his face. My hand roamed up his cheek and to his hair.
I could taste the whiskey on his breath. He pulled away and we were both panting. He pushed my back up against the bed and kissed me again. He pressed his entire body up against mine. He kissed my neck, my cheek, my forehead, and my collarbone.
"I love you." He breathed in my ear. I nodded weakly. His clothes were still drenched from the rain. He rested his ear where my heart was racing.
"Thanks." I said quietly catching my breath.
"For what?" He sounded perplexed.
"For, standing up for me. Out there." I smiled weakly.
He looked at me awkwardly. Not knowing what to say. He smiled at me sympathetically and nodded. Another tear leaked from the corner of my eye as I looked at him. His smile faded and turned into a pained expression. He brushed it away with his thumb. I bit my lip and tried to smile back at him.
"I’m so sorry." He apologized again-and I hoped it was the last time- as he lowered his lips back down to mine. He kissed me sweetly and sincerely this time. He moved his mouth to the hollow base beneath my ear.
"Do you still think that this is some horrible nightmare?" He murmured.
"No." I answered, my voice shaking from the coldness of the wet fabric on my skin. He pulled back and noticed that I was shivering. He frowned but it was replaced with a smile. He got up and motioned for me to stay where I was. I watched him walk over to the dresser and rummage through it until he found what he was looking for. He came back and helped me up to my feet. I felt oddly unbalanced, I assumed it was because I was so tired.
He handed me one of his t-shirts and a pair of his sweats as well. I looked at them bemused. He smiled at me quickly.
"I think they’ll be warmer than your shorts and tank-top." He gestured. I nodded in agreement. I slowly made my way to the bathroom to change. I looked in the mirror. My hair was flattened against my head, it was dark with rain. My clothes were soaked through and through. My eyes were slightly puffy from crying. I sniffed and put his clothes on. They were warm. I felt weird in them though, but I ignored it.
Groggy, I stepped back into the bedroom. He was already in dry clothes. He looked and me and smiled genuinely happy and pleased.

"Warm?" He asked me.
"Yeah." I spoke softly and walked into his open embrace. I closed my eyes on the brink of sleep.
"You’re tired. You should get some sleep." He pointed out. I sauntered over to the bed and crawled under the covers. He got in after me and wrapped his arms around my waist and pulled my tightly against his chest.
I wanted to stay up. To enjoy every minute of being with him. It was hard though. I turned around and kissed him before I fell asleep.

Chapter 53
* When I Can See You. Everything Is All Right. If I Can See You, This Darkness Turns To Light. And I Will Walk On Water. And You Will Catch Me If I Fall.*
aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa
When I woke up, all of last night flooded back to my mind. The intervention, the running, the screaming, the crying. Then him. I started to think that it was a dream. But, it was so realistic. He was there.
My eyes opened to see nothing there. I panicked. It was all a dream. He isn’t back. He’s never coming back. It was painful to think that it was all a dream. It was so realistic. I started hyperventilating and thinking of a way out.
"Seirnali . Calm down. I’m right here. It’s all right. I’m right here." He walked through the door and got in beside me and held me. I felt like an idiot. Freaking out like this. But, that’s how dependant I had become. I used to be so independent, but it was all gone. I couldn’t live without him.
Not now, not ever.
"I just went to get some water. I thought you would be thirsty." He explained sheepishly. I swallowed. My throat was incredibly dry after all the screaming and crying. I nodded graciously and reached for the glass of water that he was holding in his hand. He handed it to me immediately.
I let the water soothe the burning in my throat. I set the empty glass on the nightstand.
"Thanks." I said quietly. He still looked tired. I wondered if he even slept that much last night. "You look exhausted." I added with concern. He simply smiled back at me.
"I missed you." He spoke in an explanatory way. I didn’t quite understand how that answered my question, but I pushed it out my mind.
"What…did you do? While you were gone?" I queried. He looked up at me, distressed. He swallowed loudly before he answered.
"Well." He started hesitantly. "I, drank. A lot. And argued with myself and sat there doing nothing." He answered, biting his lip. "You?" He asked coolly.
"Same." I answered. "Well mostly. I only had so much whiskey." I added. He arched his eyebrows in surprise.
"You drank?" He asked, incredulous. I nodded, somewhat ashamed.
"There was some in a cupboard and I drank it. My dad was pissed. It doesn’t taste all that great." I smiled. He laughed at my observation.
"Yeah." he added quietly chuckling.
"Did you even sleep last night?" I probed. He looked at me then looked down quickly.
"Uh. No, not really." He said sheepishly.
"Why?" I asked concerned. He shook his head.
"I don’t know. I guess. I just. Well, honestly. I was watching you sleep. I know that sounds weird, but, I missed you. Seeing you every day." He explained. I nodded in understanding. I still didn’t like the fact that he didn’t really sleep. He looked at me expectantly.
"What did you think I was doing?" He asked randomly. I laughed bitterly.
" I thought you might have gone back to Angela." I added, clearly embarrassed. He smiled at me.
"No." He simply replied to my prediction.
"Alex, I really think that you should get some sleep." I urged. He shook his head vehemently.
"No. I’m fine. Really. Hungry?" He changed the subject. I sighed, figuring he would end up falling asleep on the couch. I nodded to satiate him. He flashed his crooked smile and I realized how much I missed it. He grabbed my arm, pulling me out of the bed. He stopped to look at me up and down. "You look good in my shirt." He smiled.
"Thanks." I looked down at the oversized shirt I was wearing. He dragged me out into the kitchen.
"What do you want to eat?" He asked in his normal tone.
"Um. I, don’t know." I hadn’t really eaten in a while. So I wasn’t really sure. He noticed my unsure expression.
"You want some waffles?" He suggested slowly. I looked at him and nodded still unsure. He smiled and I watched him start making them. He was wearing some jeans and his favorite gray shirt. I went and got changed and put my hair up. I walked back in and he had a plate for me and him placed on the table. I smiled as I sat down and started eating.
"Thanks." I had missed eating. He nodded.
Later, like I had presumed, Alex was passed out on the couch. But, more importantly, he was passed out on me. I sighed.
Same old, same old.

Chapter 54
* And I Will, Got Lost Into Your Eyes. I Know Everything Will Be All Right. I Know Everything Is All Right. I Know You Didn’t Bring Me Out Here To Drown.*
ÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇ
Taking into consideration the lack of eating, drinking and sleeping in the past month; I should have guessed that I would get sick by running into the pouring rain in shorts and a tank top. I sighed.
"How are you feeling? You want some water? Another blanket? A pillow? You want a Tylenol?" He pressed. He was very…worried or concerned. Caring. He would never leave me alone unless he went to go get something. I was very grateful none the less. My own parents had never been this compassionate. They would usually just tell me to call them if I needed anything and then leave for work. I was used to taking care of myself whenever I was sick. It felt weird having someone else do it for me.
"Alex, really, I’m fine. You don’t have to spend every waking second with me." I told him. He shook his head.
"No. Really. I don’t mind it. Do you need anything?" He asked again. I sighed. I just had a touch of the flu. Nothing I couldn’t handle. I shook my head.
"Were you this protective over your other girlfriends?" I rasped.
"They were never sick." He laid down next to me. I looked down at him in disbelief.
"You’re going to get sick!" I warned. He shrugged. I coughed and he sat up.
"You want some water?" He looked at me. I shook my head. "You want anything? I feel so helpless." He admitted. I sighed and thought for something to make him happy.
"Well then, can you please get me a glass of…apple juice?" I asked for something random. He nodded quickly and went into the kitchen. I sighed and my head fell on the pillow. He came back in with the glass of juice.
"Here." He handed it to me.

"Thanks." I smiled. He waited for a couple minutes before he bombarded me with questions again.
"Are you cold?" He asked again. I looked at him and put the glass down.
"Sure." I answered simply.
"You want another blanket? A sweater?"
"No. Here just lay down and relax. Me being sick is not the end of the world. Ok? You don‘t have to coddle me." I patted the empty space next to me. He smiled and came back to his spot next to me. I rested my head on his shoulder. "I feel like s***. Do I look like s***?" I asked. I hated being sick mainly because I would be paranoid about how I looked.
"No. You look good. Great. Beautiful." He contradicted. I laughed and how he was acting.
"Thanks." I said somewhat sarcastically. I shivered. He sat up straight again. "Alex." I groaned in frustration before he could say anything.
"Why are you so stubborn to let me help you?" He asked, hurt. I sighed and pulled him back down.
"I don’t know. I’m grateful, really, I am. I’m just used to taking care of myself. I mean my parents never really helped me. So, I just got used to taking care of myself." I admitted. His frown replaced with a scowl.
"Did they do anything for you?" He hissed between clenched teeth. I thought for a moment, I couldn’t really remember anything that stood out.
"That’s not the point ok? Just, you don’t have to freak out about everything. Ok?" I added softly. He sighed defeated, and slowly nodded. "Thank you." I kissed his forehead and then turned away to cough. He looked at me with wide eyes and I flashed him a warning glance. He nodded curtly and relaxed.
Later that day, he had calmed down. Kind of. He was still overly protective though.
"Are you hungry?"
I blanched.
"I don’t think food would be very beneficial to me at the moment." I joked.
"Right. Sorry." He apologized.
"Don’t be sorry. Jeez." I paused. "Oh, I wonder what I did to deserve you sometimes." I sighed. He smiled.
"Really?" He asked, incredulous. I nodded. I blinked a couple times. The medicine I took a few hours ago was kicking in. I was getting tired.
"Mmhmm." I tried to stay awake. I rested a majority of my weight on him now. He laughed.
"Tired?" He asked, already knowing the answer. I nodded slowly and he pulled the covers over me. "Get some sleep." He told me. "I won’t leave." He assured as he pulled some of the blanket over him and rested his head on the pillow beside mine. I rested my head on his chest and yawned again.
" ‘Kay." I mumbled before I fell asleep.

Chapter 55
*So Why Am I Ten Feet Under And Upside Down? Barely Surviving, Had Become My Purpose. ‘Cause I’m So Used To Living Underneath The Surface.*
mmmmmmmmmm
When I woke up, I felt considerably better. My throat wasn’t so sore, and the aching in my stomach had gone away. No chills. No fever. I smiled.
"Feel better?" He looked at me while he stroked my hair. I nodded and smiled. "You need anything? Food?" He started the questioning again. I rolled my eyes and shook my head. He slightly laughed. "All right." He gave up. I got up and went in the bathroom to go brush my teeth. I fixed my hair and then went back to the comfort of the bed. He was still where he was when I left him, toying with the loose strings on the blanket.
"How are you feeling? You want more medicine?" He said as soon as he saw me. I laughed.
"Are you trying to drug me?" I asked jokingly. He smiled in fake malevolence.
"Maybe." He grinned again and placed his arms behind his head. "But, I don’t think I would have to." He added, smiling provocatively. I arched my eyebrow and looked at him.
"Oh, really? Are you saying I’m easy then?" I feigned offense. He smiled.
"No." He defended. I folded my arms in front of my chest.
"Mmhmm!" I hummed and sat back down on my side of the bed. He frowned and grabbed my waist and pulled me onto his lap. I glanced at him from the corner of my eye. He smiled back at me and moved the hair off of my neck and placed his lips on my skin.
He kissed down my shoulder blade and then back up neck and as far down my jaw line that he could reach. He moved my hair on the opposite side of my neck and did the same thing. I got off of his lap kissed him on the lips. He kissed back. I remembered that I was still sick and pulled back.
"You’re going to get sick." I explained my actions. He shrugged.
"Oh well." He kissed me again. He pushed my back on the bed and crawled on top of me. I smiled inwardly at his behavior and then rolled my eyes as he took his shirt off. Probably guessing that I would be trying to take it off anyway.
He placed his mouth back on mine He begged me to part my lips. I hesitated at first to tantalize him. He was getting frustrated. I found it amusing. He tugged on my bottom lip with his teeth. I still refused. His fingers clawed into my arm in hindrance.
"Own." I complained against his mouth. He smiled in satisfaction as his tongue roamed the inside of my mouth. His hands moved under my shirt and placed them on my hips. I jumped at how cold his hands were. He smiled apologetically.
He greedily kissed down my neck. As usual, I ran my fingers through his hair and he groaned. He pulled my shirt up over my head. He ran his hands over my bare stomach and up to my neck. He kissed me beneath my ear and I bit my tongue.
He sucked on the hollow base. I moaned and he smirked. He pressed his bare chest against mine. I placed my hands back near my side for a moment, and he pinned my wrists above head on the headboard. I rolled my eyes. He ran his other hand through my hair and pulled my head back so he could reach the hollow base above my collarbone.
I blinked a couple times trying to make the blurriness go away. He let go of my hair and moved his hand up and down my pinned arm. I smiled against his lips. He kissed down my chest.
I tried to move my hands a little bit, and he tightened his hand around my wrist and I winced. He came back to my lips. I eagerly kissed him and he rubbed his thumb against my cheek.
I heard the phone ring and I easily ignored it. The machine picked it up.
"Hey, um. Seirnali . It’s mom. Abby was just wondering if her and Eric could have your wedding date because they figured you would move the date anyway considering the recent…events. So yeah. Call me back. Please." My mom spoke shakily into the phone.
He fingers dug into the skin on my hands in anger. I whined in pain. He let go of my wrists and pulled away. I rubbed my wrists where his nails cut into the skin. He grabbed my wrist out of my hand and rubbed his thumb along it.
"Sorry." He kissed the underside of my wrist. I nodded and he sat up. I copied his movement. He looked at me. "Can I please go and kill Eric and Abby?" He begged in a serious tone. I smiled.
"I would love that." I answered jokingly. But somewhat serious. I kissed him again. He released my wrist and wrapped his arms around me and laid down on his back. I was resting my weight on him.
He raked his fingers up and down my back and parted his lips.
He breathed into my open mouth. I pushed myself up and he smiled up at me and put his hands on my shoulders. He pressed my body back up against him and pressed his lips against my hair.
"So. You’re not easy?" He laughed.
"Nope!" I confirmed as I got up. He jumped up and wrapped his arms around my waist.
"Right." He drawled.

Chapter 56 * When I Can See You. Everything Is Alright. If I See You. This Darkness Will Turn To Light. And I Will Walk On Water. And You Will Catch Me If I Fall.* UUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU "Mom?! What the f***?! You gave my wedding reservation to Abby and Eric?!" I shouted in ire in my parents’ living room. She seemed nonchalant. I knew that she didn’t care about me anymore. She never did. Never would. "Are you sure you should go over there?" Alex asked as he followed me out to the car. "Well, I have to get it out of the way sooner or later." I sighed as I slammed the passenger door shut. He looked at me and frowned. "Well, I mean. Are you sure you want to go over there? I mean, seeing them." He asked quietly. I met his concerned gaze and nodded. "All right." He started the car. I was beginning to regret coming here. "Well, honey. It’s just that, while he was gone. Abby asked for the reservation a lot and I mean after a couple weeks, he was still gone and I figured that she would probably have a better chance at using it than you would. I didn’t want it to go to waste. So, I gave it Abby and Eric. It made them so happy. "You should have seen her face! I mean when she asked a couple days after he left, I was a little skeptical. But, I can’t just take it back. I’m sure you’ll get a new date sometime. Maybe." Maybe? "Do you even care about me anymore?! I swear, you care more about Abby and Eric than you do your own f*ing daughter!" I shouted. She turned back to me with a scowl on her face. "Don’t cuss at me young lady!" She reprimanded. Alex walked out from the kitchen and put his hands on my shoulders. "Just say it to my face! You and dad don’t f*ing care about me! No one does!" I shouted my voice shaking. "Who told you that?!" She asked oblivious to the fact that I had heard them when Alex came back. " Well, you were pretty damn blunt about it when Alex came back the other night. I heard you! I was a trouble. A pain. A waste of your precious time!" I challenged. She looked at me gaping. "You know, I’m glad that your father and I gave that date to Abby and Eric. You don’t appreciate what we did for you anyway." She said smugly. I opened my mouth to yell at her. "Let’s go." Alex whispered in my ear. I nodded sharply and headed to the door. He followed closely behind me. We got outside when we ran into the newly engaged couple. "Hi Seirnali !" Abby squealed. "I’m getting married in a couple months!" She exclaimed. I faked a smile. "Yep. We got to snag up your wedding date." Eric sneered at me and lightly tapped my cheek with his hand. "Why aren’t you putting up a fight?!" He complained. I looked at the wall, again. Still. He tilted his head to the side and tapped my cheek. He got off me and punched me in the shoulder. I winced at turned my head around. What happened next occurred very quickly. I turned my head back around and Alex punched Eric in the face. He fell on the ground covering his nose and swearing under his breath. I looked up at Alex and then to Abby. Her mouth was open and then she started screaming. "What did you do!? What is wrong with you!? You could have broken something." She accused and fell on her knees to Eric. She moved his hand back and she gasped at the blood dripping off his hand and onto the cement. "Oh, Eric. Are you ok?!" She asked in concern. "Yeah. I’m fine." Eric got to his feet. What happened next pissed the hell out of me. Eric punched Alex in the stomach. I looked at Eric in absolute rage. "You son of a b****!" I screamed at him and went to go kick him or punch him or anything. Alex pulled me back and told me to stay back. I obeyed as he went back up to Eric and hit him again. I bit my lip as it turned into a fist fight. "Seirnali ! Make it stop! Eric’s going to get hurt!" She yelled at me. I ignored her. I was happy that Eric was getting what he deserved. She frowned at my lack of action. "Stop fighting!" She yelled at them now. My parents must have heard the cussing and screaming because my mom and dad came out slamming the door. "What is going on out here?!" My dad shouted. My mom gasped. "Oh Mr. Bray! Make them stop!" Abby pleaded at my dad. My dad walked toward them. I ran ahead of him. "Get out of the way Seirnali ." He pushed me to the side. I gnawed on my bottom lip. "All right you two. Knock it off." He pulled them apart and I ran up to Alex and grabbed his arm. He looked at me and his eyes were wide with rage. He had a small cut across his upper cheek and his lip was bleeding. Some blood leaked from the corner of his mouth. He smiled nevertheless. Eric however had blood smeared all over his face. I could see the black eye forming and his nose looked slightly crooked. The blood dripped out of his mouth. "Oh God Eric! Are you alright?! Look at the blood! Are you ok!?" Abby poured. "I’m fine Abby." He spit some more blood out. ‘What happened?" My mom demanded. "That little b****’s bodyguard beat the s*** out of me!" Eric shouted. Alex stepped towards Eric and Eric shrank back. I thought for sure, my dad would be mad at the fact that Eric called me a b****. "Seirnali ! You know better than that! Go apologize." My dad wasn’t phased. I looked at him in shock. "Did you hear him?! He called me a b****! I’m not apologizing to him! Not for this. He’s the one that owes me the apology!" I yelled. What was wrong with everyone!?

Chapter 57
* And I Will Get Lost Into Your Eyes. I Know Everything Will Be Alright. And I Will Walk On Water. And You Will Catch Me If I Fall. And I Will Get Lost Into You Eyes…*
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"Seirnali . I know you don’t particularly get along with Eric here, but you can’t have Alex beat him up." He was talking to me like I was mentally incompetent.
"Dad, do you even care about me? Because honestly, you guys can adopt Abby as your fucking daughter ‘cause I sure as hell don’t want to be it anymore." I spoke quietly to him then turned my gaze to Abby.
"Abby, I hope that he doesn’t do to you what he did to me. And I’m not referring to him breaking up with me. Which, by the way is a lie. I broke up with him after I walked in on him having sex with another woman. I probably should have left sooner though considering how much he hit and abuse me. But do you care? Do any of you care? No. So what does it even matter?" I scoffed.
"So enjoy your wedding. I’m assuming neither of us will be invited." I continued.

"He…abused you?" My dad whispered. I nodded.
"Yeah, but please, don’t let this stop you from marrying him Abby. I’m sure he’s over that little phase of his." I shook my head. "Oh and mom, don’t worry about giving Abby my reservation. I’m sure I’ll find another one, and I won’t bother you two and waste your time by asking you to come. Of course, I’ll have to ask someone else to walk me down the aisle." I looked at my dad.
"I could ask Matt." My cousin. "But, he lives so far away. Oh well, I can just walk myself down the aisle…" I trailed off thoughtfully. "Well, I’m taking up to much of your guys’ time. I’m sure you have a ton of wedding things to work out with Abby, mom."
"Ready to go?" I looked at Alex. He smiled at me sympathetically and nodded. He handed me the keys and pushed me in the direction of the car.
When we got home I led him to the bathroom and grabbed a washrag and turned the water on. He watched me intently. I gently wiped all the blood off his face and rubbed some hydro peroxide on his cuts. He winced.
"Sorry." I muttered. He smiled back at me again. He had a small bruise on his cheek by his eye. I placed a band-aid on his cut and threw the wrapper away. "All done." I stated admiring my work. He moved his mouth a little.
"Is my lip swollen?" He asked for conformation.
"A little bit. You want some ice on it? I’m sure it would help. Or some Advil?" I bit my lip. I was starting to sound like him. He laughed.
"No. I’m fine. Thank you though." He added as he hugged me. "So, when do you want to get married?" He asked coolly. I looked at him and tilted my head to the side.
"What?"
"Well, you don’t have a schedule to pertain to anymore. When do you want to get married?" He explained. I raised my eyebrows in thoughtfulness.
"Um. I don’t know. Oh! How about, um, May 15th ?" I asked excitedly. He smiled.
"Sure. Sounds good to me." He grinned. Realization dawned on me and I groaned. He looked back at me. "What’s wrong?"
"I don’t know how to plan a wedding!" I groaned. He smiled at me in support.
"Aw, it can’t be that hard. I can help. And I’m sure Anna would love to help you." He encouraged.
Anna. Anna! Of course! Why didn’t I think of that? She hadn’t been turned into one of the traitors in my family.
"That’s true." I mumbled. I looked back up at his cut face and chuckled. "Oh, the things you do for me." I observed.
"What? This?" He pointed to his cuts. "He deserved it. And plus, I had fun." He grinned again.
"Oh, well that’s good." I paused. "I think you broke his nose." I laughed as I walked out of the bathroom with him following me. "Do you think Abby will stay with him?" I asked, thinking about to my latest revelation.
"Knowing Abby, she probably will." He sighed. "Such a pity." He added with a chuckle. I nodded introspectively. He stopped walking and grabbed my hand. I looked up and him and smiled.
"What?" I asked coyly. He leered.
"Have you ever danced before?" He asked unsystematically. I looked at him perplexed and shook my head.
"I don’t know how." I admitted forlornly.
"Well then how are you going to dance at the wedding?" He asked deriving from a point that I wasn‘t getting.
"I’ll figure something out." I looked down at the floor. He grabbed my waist and lifted me up so that I was standing on his feet. "What are you doing?" I laughed. He placed my hands on his shoulders and then set his on my waist.
"See? You can dance." He pointed out. I rested my head on his chest.
"Right." I closed my eyes as he gently walked back and forth.

Chapter 58
*…I‘m Always Too Late. I See The Train Leaving. I‘m Always Laughing, When It‘s Not Cool To Smile.*
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"You know what would be cool? If we got married somewhere tropical. Like Aruba, or Fiji." I suggested, staring out the huge window in the bedroom. He turned the light off and crawled into bed.
"I like Aruba." He wrapped his arms around my waist. "I like Fiji too." He kissed my neck.
"And then we could stay there for the honeymoon. And we could get married in the evening when the sun’s setting." I grinned in the darkness.
"Who all is going to be there?" He asked, interested. I thought about it for a moment.
"Well, I’m sure Anna will want to be there. I’m sure my parents wouldn’t come. So what like three people?" I estimated.
"Three?" He questioned me in confusion. I nodded.
"Yeah. I thought that Katrina could be the flower girl and James could be the little ring bearer. I mean, it fits right?" I chuckled. He laughed in agreement.
"Yeah, that makes sense." He paused. "Jake could be my best man. So that would be four." He affirmed.
"All right then. Four people it is." I smiled in satisfaction.
"What kind of flowers do you want?" He said in between trailing kisses on my neck.
"Um…flowers?" I tried to think straight.
"Mmhmm." He stopped when he got to the nape of my neck and blew warm air on my skin sending shivers down my back. I was silent. "Well?" He murmured.
"I…like….roses. And lilies." I managed to say.
"Roses are nice." He breathed. "They would go with your dress." He whispered in my ear. I didn’t know what he was doing, but it was very distracting.
"Uh huh…" I agreed quietly. He smiled and placed his hand under my shirt and ran it up my back. "What are you doing?" I asked.
"Nothing." He answered simply as he pulled his hand out from under my shirt and then situated me so that I was facing him. His smile was of pure mischief. I eyed him warily. He pulled me so that I was closer to his face. "And, what kind of cake do you want?" He breathed. I blinked, completely losing my train of though or what the hell we were even talking about.
"…What cake?" I asked, lost. He grinned again and inched his lips closer to mine.
"The wedding cake. Do you want a chocolate cake or a white cake?"
"…White." I answered slowly. He slightly nodded. I closed the space between us and he smiled in triumph. I rolled my eyes. His kissing was rather rough but I didn’t say anything. He pulled away and I caught my breath. I looked at him. He grinned again.
"Do you have any idea how distracting you are sometimes?" I asked him, presuming he knew the answer.
"Well, not to everyone. Just to you." He pointed out.
"Well, gee. I wonder why." Referring to what he was doing prior to this conversation.
"You’re easy to distract." He smiled.
"I am not!" I objected in offense. He shook his head.
"Yes you are. See?" He moved his face closer to me and looked straight me in the eyes and ran the tips of his fingers down my arm. "Now, do you believe me?" He whispered.
S***! What the hell are we talking about? Frick. Ok just say yes. But then he would win. Say no.
He raised his eyebrows waiting for a response.
"Do you have any clue what I’m talking about?" He smirked. I shook my head slowly. He laughed. "See? You are very easy to distract." He moved back. I shook my head to clear it.
"That’s not fair." I balked. He shrugged. I narrowed my eyes and turned my back to him. "I’m going to sleep." I stated. He sighed loudly. I went to the edge of the bed where I originally would sleep. I missed it. However, I laid awake for an hour. I couldn’t fall asleep. I concluded it was because I had grown used to sleeping beside him. I sighed in frustration and shame.
"We both know you’re never going to fall sleep over there." He drawled. I knew he was right, but I was still pretending to be mad at him. He started whistling some rhythm less tune. I sighed in defeat and he pulled me against him.
"I love you." He stated. I closed my eyes.
"Love you too."

Chapter 59
*I‘m Always Aiming, But Somehow Keep Missing. So How Did You Get Here? Something Is Wrong.*
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In the morning, after Alex had woken me up and annoyed me, Anna came over to help me plan the wedding. She brought the kids with her since she was a single mom and they had nowhere else to go.
"Oh Seirnali . I’m so glad that you want me to help you plan your wedding. But, I thought that your mom was planning it all and what not." She asked.
"Oh yeah, Well, my mom kind of gave my wedding date to Abby and Eric and they aren’t coming anyway so yeah." I looked down at the floor. She looked at my sympathetically.
"I’m so sorry sweetie." She comforted. I nodded to show her I was fine. Alex walked out of the kitchen, not bothering to get dressed and was wearing his shorts and no shirt. I flushed again.
"Seirnali , you need to make some more of those cookies." He glanced up at me and saw Anna. "Oh, hi Anna. Good morning." He smiled and walked into the bedroom, shameless. I didn’t understand him sometimes.
"Sorry about that." I apologized. She laughed.
"Well, what have you planned so far?" She asked.
"May 15th, in Aruba, with red roses and the sunset." Alex walked out of the bedroom reciting the details as he sat down next to me. "And white cake." He grinned at me. I looked away from him.
"Oh, that’ll be great! Who all is coming?" She inquired.
"Well, you, the kids of course and Alex’s friend Jake." I said happily. She looked surprised.
"Who’s going to be your bridesmaid?" She asked.
"I was hoping you would be." I smiled sheepishly. "And Katrina could be the flower girl and James the ring bearer?" I added hopefully.
"Oh I would love that! Katrina? You want to be Seirnali ’s flower girl?" She directed toward the girl on the floor in front of the television. Her attention turned to her mom.
"Really? Yeah!" She squealed in excitement. James pouted.
"What about me?"
"You would be the ring bearer." Anna explained. His face lit up. She turned back to me. "Do you have a dressed picked out?" She asked.
"Yep." I answered. She smiled in excitement.
"Where is it?"
"Oh, it’s at the store, actually." I answered. She smiled in disappointment in not being able to see it on me.
"Seirnali ?" Alex called in distress. I looked at him and Katrina was sitting on his lap, looking at him with a flashy smile on her lips. He half smiled at her. He looked absolutely awkward in the scenario. I laughed.
"Katrina…" I froze, not knowing what to do. I didn’t want to particularly touch her. Anna rolled her eyes.
"Katrina, come on." She grabbed her by the waist and set her on the floor.
"Thanks." Alex sighed. Anna smiled at him.
"So, how have you two been?" Anna changed the subject abruptly. I went to answer but he beat me to it.
"Great. Fantastic." He smiled. I looked up at him. "We would be even better if you made cookies later today." He looked at me now. I rolled my eyes and nodded. "How are you?" He asked politely.
"Oh, good, good. But we’re not talking about me. So, what have you two been up to?" She turned the attention back to us.
"Oh, this and that." I answered rather simply. She smiled back at me and then glanced at Alex and her smiled vanished.
"What happened to you?" She eyed the cut on his cheek. He smiled triumphantly.
"Oh, he got in a fight with Eric the other day."
"How?"
"Well, we went to my mom’s house and she told us about the whole giving the reservation to Abby and Eric thing. Long story short, we went outside and we bumped into those two and Eric pissed him off so they got in a fight." I summed up. She nodded slowly.
"Where’s your ring?!" James asked in a frenzy. Anna rolled her eyes at her son’s behavior.
"Sorry James. I got a different one and I couldn’t wear them both." I answered him. His face fell.
"Oh let me see it." Anna grabbed my hand. She complimented it and then praised Alex. He grinned sheepishly, still not seeing the big deal in it. James went off and pouted, so did Katrina. "Well, how about Monday, we go out and pick all the stuff out for the wedding?" She asked after she released my hand. I nodded in agreement. "Did you want to come?" She asked Alex. He looked at her.
"Sure." He pulled me against his shoulder.
"Great. So, I will see you two next week then. James, Katrina, come on. We need to go." She called out. They looked up from pouting and slowly followed her out the door as she waved goodbye to us.
She shut the door and he looked down at me expectantly.
"Cookies?" He asked.
"Yeah, yeah, yeah."

Chapter 60
* Where Did I Go Right? How Did I Get You? How Come All This Blue Sky Is Around Me, And You Found Me?*
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Alex stuck his head in the fogged up bathroom.
"What are you doing?" He asked.
"Well, the shower’s on and I’m in the shower, so I think it would be safe to say that I’m taking a shower." I answered over the running water.
"Hah hah." He said smugly. I rolled my eyes and turned the water off and stuck my hand out of the curtain.
"Can you hand me a towel?" I solicited. He placed a towel in my open hand. "Thank you." I wrapped it around my chest and tucked the end of in so it would stay as is. I got out and I brushed my hair out and the water dropped down to the floor. I ruffled it with a towel and then combed it out again. It fell to my shoulders in perfect, wavy curls.
I walked out to the bedroom and grabbed a pair of jeans and a black tank-top and he followed me. I went back to the bathroom to change.
"Can I have a minute?" I laughed. He smiled suggestively at me. I shook my head and shut the door on him. I pulled my jeans on and then my undershirt when he opened the door again.
"Can I come in now?" He was practically in already.
"Yes."
I sighed in frustration. I didn’t want this tank top. I threw it in the hamper and walked out to the bedroom.
" I like what you’re wearing now." He pulled me against him.
"Yeah well, jeans and a bra isn’t an outfit." I sighed and tried to get away to put a top on. He constricted me so that I couldn’t move. "You know, it’s not fair when you do this to me." I stated. He rested his cheek on the top of my head.
"You smell nice." He complimented.
"Thanks." I gratified roughly. "I’m getting cold, can I please get a top?" I implored. He shook his head. "Are you going to annoy me like this for the rest of my life?" I requested. He nodded his head fervently as he backed up to the edge of the bed and fell back on it. I grabbed the blanket to the side and placed it over me to keep myself warm. "Ok. I’m warm now." I stated.
"Lovely." He rolled his eyes. He moved his arms and I rolled over so my face was pressed against his half exposed chest.
"Do you ever button your shirt up all the way?" I mumbled.
"Nope." He grinned. I shook my head in false shame. "Have you asked Jake about being your best man yet?" I changed the subject and looked up at him.
"Yep. I mentioned Aruba and he said yes before I finished." He pursed his lips. I laughed. That sounded like Jake. "He’s probably planning on checking out all the girls in the bikinis." He paused and looked back down at me and smiled. "Speaking of which…" He trailed off.
"Yeah, that’s not going to happen." I condoled sarcastically. He frowned.
"Why not?!"
I didn’t really have an answer.
"Because. I look horrible in them and just, no." I explained.
He looked at me and shook his head. He was irrefutably planning something.
"We’ll see about that." He said confidently.
"Yeah, well ok. You just keep telling yourself that." I kissed him quickly and then got up and grabbed a top. I put in on and he hastily turned me around so that I was facing him and took it back off and threw it on the floor. "What are you d--" His mouth crashed down on mine before I could get a complete sentence out. He rested his hands on my waist and shoved me against the wall on the other side of the dresser.
I started getting dizzy from lack of oxygen and pulled away. He seemed oblivious and went to my neck. After I calmed my erratic breathing, he went back to my mouth. He pulled on my bottom lip with his teeth.
I cautiously unbuttoned his shirt and pushed it on his shoulders. He shrugged it off and it fell on the floor. He knotted his hand in my still wet hair.
He elevated me off the floor so he could reach my neck. I wrapped my legs around his waist and he grinned. He walked over to the edge of the bed and I felt the comforter on my practically bare back. He broke away from my mouth and panted. I looked at him incredulously. He grinned seductively and then moved his lips to the base of my neck. I ran my hands from his shoulders and down to his forearm. He tipped my head back slightly and kissed under my jaw.
" You’re spontaneity is really starting to confuse me." I informed him. He pulled away.
"I’m sorry." He murmured. The tip of his tongue traced the outline of my lips. I kissed him insatiably. His hands went to my shoulders and pushed the straps down my arm. I pushed him away and looked at him with rebuke on my face. He bit his lip and looked at me apologetically. "Sorry, got carried away." He grinned again. I rolled my eyes and pushed the straps back up.

Chapter 61
* Where Did I Go Right? How Did I Get You? I Don’t Know How I Did. But Somehow Now I Do.*
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Alex pushed me against the wall and kissed down my neck. I moaned and ran my fingers through his hair. His mouth came back to mine and I licked his bottom lip. He parted his lips and my tongue ran over his.
Anna knocked on the door. She was meeting us here so that we would go to the mall to start planning the rest of the wedding. He kept kissing me, oblivious to the knocking on the door. Anna knocked again. He went down to my neck again.
"The door?" I asked breathlessly.
"What door?"
On cue, the door was knocked again. He pulled away and ran his hands through his hair and sighed.
"Right." He fixed my shirt and smiled at me. I rolled my eyes and he wrapped his arm tightly around my waist and walked me to the front door. He opened the door and Anna smiled at us pleasantly.
"Morning." She greeted.
"Morning Anna." I mimicked.
"Ready to go?" She asked. I nodded.
We walked into some wedding boutique that I didn’t even knew existed. There were the tables with the plates and silverware that coordinated with the tablecloths and even the napkins. Then, around the corner they had the cakes and everything else under the sun. I sighed.
"Ok. So, where do you want to start?" Anna broke through excitedly. I looked at her with a shocked expression on my face. She smiled at me in support. "We can look at the tables or the cakes. I don’t know what you two have planned really. I’m just here to help." She added. I nodded slowly. Alex wrapped his arm around my waist and towed me to the cakes. Of course, he would go to the sweets first. I rolled my eyes.
"White cakes." He smiled proudly. I rolled my eyes again and intertwined my fingers with his.
"Yes. White cake." I walked around the various tables surveying each one carefully. I found one that had white as its main color with black detail all over the cake. It had red roses made of frosting at various ends of the black vines. I gasped at its absolute perfection. I thought about how perfectly it would match my dress and the flowers that would decorate the area. I grinned.
"I’m assuming you like this one." He spoke. I jumped and he chuckled.
"Yes. I do like this one." I confirmed. Anna excitedly made her way over to us.
"You like this one?!" Her voice raising another octave. I nodded briskly. "Oh. Fantastic! Ok, now what about tables?" She eyed the coordinating sets.
"Do I really need tables for six people?" I was guessing. She gave me an understanding look.
"Right. Good point." She pursed her lips and walked off to find a clerk to secure the plans with. I turned my attention back to the cake and he wrapped his arms around my waist and rested his chin on my shoulder.
"Do you think it tastes good?" He asked quietly. I laughed.
"Well, I’m sure you can put whip cream all over it." I said in between laughs. He smiled.
"You said so yourself that it makes everything taste good." He reminded me. I chuckled.
"Yes, I did." I sighed in agreement. He kissed my neck while I continued to stare at the cake.
"All right. That’s all squared away." She broke in. Alex pulled away abruptly.
"Good." He approved. Anna winked at me. I flushed.
We went to one of the fast food restaurants in the mall to get something to eat. We sat down and I sipped from my bottle of water. I wasn’t really hungry.
"So, are you excited?" Anna ultimately asked. I didn’t know. Was I? Was he for that matter?! I peeked a glance at him. He was all smiles. As usual. I sighed. I didn’t want to sound like one of those crazy fiancées who was obsessed with getting married and would do anything to accomplish it. I mean I was excited, but I was going to start screaming and jumping up and down.
"Yeah." I answered coolly. She beamed.
" I know you guys are probably sick of hearing this, but, you two look great together." She complimented. I smiled sheepishly and nodded to show my thanks. Then, her eyes softened. "I’m sorry about the whole ordeal with your parents and everything. It’s horrible." She consoled.
"No. It’s ok. I mean, whatever." I answered simply, waving my hand in the air to dismiss the subject. I mean, I was still ticked about it. But, I was trying not to let it bug me. He pulled me against his shoulder. I took another drink water. "Has Abby invited you to her wedding?" I swallowed.
"Yeah. She did, actually." She admitted, disconcerted. I nodded.
"Oh. Are the kids going? I’m sure you’ll have fun." I smiled in support. Alex moved his hand to the back of my neck.
" I don’t know if I’m going." She admitted. I looked at her quizzically.
"Why? Just because I hate her doesn’t mean that you can’t go."
"I know. I just…I don’t know." She said, unaware of her future decision.
"No. You should go." I blinked a couple times as he unconsciously started rubbing my neck. She looked at me for a minute and then sighed.

"Yeah. I suppose I should go." She said defeated. I smiled, pleased with myself. She looked at her cell phone. "I should get going. James and Katrina are probably getting bored with your parents." She joked. "Well, I will see you two later. Ok?" She got up and Alex moved his hand so I could get up and hug her. She pulled away. "Bye." She pecked me on the cheek and then headed to the exit, waving.
Shortly after she left, we got up and walked around to nowhere in particular.
"Alex?" Someone asked from behind. I turned around to see a woman with the body of a freaking Victoria’s Secret model and perfect brown hair that fell to her shoulders.
Who the hell…?

Chapter 62
* I’m Always Driving. Forget Where I’m Going. Should Have Turned Left, But I Was Singing Some Song.*
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"Angela?" Alex swallowed his disbelief. My whole body went cold. Angela smiled and ran up give him a hug. He didn’t hug her back, to my great surprise. She pulled back.
"You look great! How have you been?"
"Fine, thank you."
She smiled and then she looked at me and scowled.
"Who’s this?" Her eyes narrowed at me. Alex’s smile returned and he pulled me against him.
"This is my fiancée, Seirnali ." He grinned.
"Oh. You’re engaged? How…nice. I thought you might have been single still." She added, hopeful. I had a bitter taste in my mouth. She was wearing a skin tight shirt and an equally tight pair of skinny jeans. I hated her.
Immensely.
"Nope. Happy as could be." He boasted. I wanted to smile, but all I could manage was chagrin. Her face fell.
"Well aren’t you lucky?" She directed me sarcastically. I faked a smile and nodded. I had to get out of this situation. I looked around quickly and spotted a nice clothes store a few feet away.
"I’ll be right back." I whispered as I tore away from him to go into the store. He looked at me desperately and grabbed my hand. I felt bad as I pulled my hand out of his grasp but, I seriously had to get away from her. I heard her voice again as I got further away. I got to the store and flipped through the racks of clothes, not really paying attention to what I was looking at. I could see why he would have proposed to her, she was beautiful. Made me look like s***. I had literally no idea what he saw in me, compared to her. I sighed in defeat. I felt someone roughly grab my elbow and pull me back.
"What is wrong with you?! Are you insane? Leaving me with her?!" His voice was husky with anger and frustration.
"What? I saw some clothes and I wanted to look at them." I tried to reply calmly with his lips pressed against my ear.
" You just leave me?! I barely got away from her!" He hissed, his temper growing. I shrank back.
"Sorry." I apologized. He scoffed and he dug his fingers into my elbow. A clerk walked up behind us.
"Are you two alright?" He asked warily eyeing Alex. I rolled my eyes.
"Yeah, fine." I answered and he walked off. After he was out of earshot Alex gripped my elbow again and towed me out of the store. I struggled to keep up with him. He pulled me out to the car. "What are you doing?! Seriously! Calm down." I begged. He shook his head fervently. He opened the back door and pushed me in. "Alex." I whined. He smiled malevolently at me.
" Alex, hey." I heard Angela. Alex slammed the back door shut. The windows were tinted so she couldn’t see me. I looked out the window.
"Hi Angela." He replied coolly.
"Where’s Seirnali ?" She asked flirtatiously as she got closer to him and pulled on one of his shirt buttons. I clinched my teeth, and waited for Alex’s reaction. He roughly pushed her away.
"Yeah. I don’t think so Angela." He said sardonically. She scoffed in pure offense.
"Fine." She hissed and then walked off to her car. I grinned then shrank back as the door opened again. He looked down at me.
"You. You owe me." He narrowed his eyes.
" I don’t see what I did wrong." I admitted sheepishly. He laughed and then got in the backseat and slammed the door shut and locked it. I rested my back against the door and stretched my legs out. He sat at the end of my feet.
"You don’t know what you did wrong?" He scoffed as he crawled over me. "Well, let me give you a hint or two. You left me with my ex girlfriend, whom I was going to propose to. Two, she was hitting on me nonstop once you left. So, there are some reasons." He grinned haughtily. I pulled my head back against the window. He had me cornered.
"I’m S--" He cut me off by crashing his mouth down on mine. I put my hands on his neck and pulled him closer to me. His hand searched for the lock on the door I was leaning on and pushed it down. He pushed my head to the side and kissed down my neck.
" You want me to apologize, and then, you cut me off. I don’t understand." I remarked. He unzipped my jacket and kissed my chest.
"I’ll let this one go." He promised and kissed me on the lips again as I unbuttoned his shirt and ran my hands up his chest and to his neck. I parted my lips and he groaned. His eager lips returned to my neck and moved to the hollow base beneath my ear.
"Alex?"
"Hmm?"
"This is nice and all, but…" I trailed off. "This backseat isn’t all that comfortable." I completed. He pulled back and looked at me, all hint of anger gone from his eyes.
"Fine." He gave in as he crawled over to the drivers seat. I took my jacket off and relaxed in the backseat.

Chapter 63
*I’m Arriving, As Everyone’s Leaving. But There You Are Waiting. Something Is Wrong.*
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"Damn it." I muttered. I spilled some pop on the kitchen floor. I sighed and grabbed a washcloth and got it wet and bent down to the floor. After I finished cleaning it, the linoleum was still wet, so I was being careful not to slip. I could be quite the klutz sometimes. But did my life ever go as planned?
Nope. Not in the least.
Somehow, I managed to slip on the water that I was being so careful to avoid and landed on the floor, my ribcage taking most of the blow. I winced in excruciating pain. I knew that never taking the correct precautions when my ribs broke time after numerous time would come back to me in the end. I landed on the side that Eric kicked the most. I bit back the cry of pain that was building in the back of my throat.
"Oh, God." I groaned, gripping my side. Shortly, the answer to my prayers walked into the kitchen.
"What happened?!" He bent down to the floor. I managed a grin.
"I think I broke a couple ribs." I strained. Wincing as I spoke.
"How?" He asked concerned.
"Oh, you know. Klutzy me fell down." I joked. He smiled shortly and then replaced it with concern again.
"Come on. Let’s take you to the doctors." He sighed and carefully picked me up without touching my broken ribcage.
"Alex, I can walk." I winced again. He shook his head as I opened the front door for him. He slowly sat me down in the car and shut the door and then walked to his side of the car. We went to the immediate care instead of the hospital. He parked the car as close to the door as he could get. I rolled my eyes.
He carried me to the desk.
"Alex, I can walk. Seriously." I repeated. The receptionist looked up from her dead stare at the desk.
"What’s wrong?" Her voice was nasally and annoyed.
"She broke a couple of ribs." Alex answered her impatiently. " I wanted a doctor to look at it." He added. The receptionist told us to sit down and that a doctor would be out in a minute. He let me sit down on the one of the chairs. A young doctor came out and Alex picked me up to take me to the room.
"So, what happened now?" The doctor asked.
" I fell down and broke a couple of my ribs." I explained. He eyed Alex.
"I didn’t hit her." Alex defended. The doctor returned his attention back to me.
"All right, the most I can do is tape them up." He sighed. I nodded. "If you want to take your top off I’ll get the tape." He said as he searched through the drawers. I started taking my shirt off.
"What are you doing?" Alex hissed.
"I’m taking my shirt off. Calm down." I said nonchalantly. His eyes narrowed on the doctor as he turned around. I rolled my eyes. Alex glared at him the whole time, I could tell how uncomfortable he was getting.
"All done." He stated. I pulled my shirt up over my head.
"Thanks." I said as I carefully got up. Alex had his hands behind me in case I fell. I grinned and headed to the door. We paid the fee at the desk and he helped me back to the car.
"Do you want anything?" He immediately asked once we were in the house. I shook my head. "Are you sure? Does anything hurt?" He insisted. I shook my head repeatedly. He followed closely behind me as I made my way over to the couch. I sat down and cringed. He sat down next to me and I leaned on his shoulder, sighing.
"Thanks." I said in the silence.
"No problem."

Chapter 64
*Where Did I Go Right? How Did I Get You? How Come All This Blue Sky Is Around Me, And You Found Me?"
FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF
"Dad. I don’t want to go to school here." I groaned as he parked the car in front of the school. He shook his head.
"Seirnali , If we’re going to be living in England, then you have to take school here." He enforced. "Now, go; You’re going to be late." He added sternly. I got out and he drove off. I swallowed my fear and ran to the door. I finally found the classroom five minutes after the bell rang. I stumbled in the door. Everyone was staring at me. I looked down and bit my lip.
"You must be Seirnali …Bray?" The teacher asked for conformation.
"Yes sir." I mumbled. He motioned for me to take a seat and I took the desk in the back corner so no one could stare at me. I looked up quickly from my desk and noticed some guy staring at me. I blushed and bit my lip, looking down again.
I figured that if I just didn’t talk to anyone, ever, I would be good. I followed through with the plan.
I walked down the halls to my next class. I wasn’t paying attention to where I was going as I tried to put all my papers in the same direction. Being me though, I tripped over my own feet and my papers went everywhere on the floor. I bit my lip, again. Before I could compose myself, someone handed me the papers. I looked up. It was the same guy who was staring at me the first day. I felt my face get hot again.
"Thanks." I smiled to show my gratitude as I grabbed the papers out of his hand. I looked at him a bit longer. "Thanks." I repeated as I hastily made my way past him.
A few weeks later, he came up to my usual table that I sat at. I glanced up at him and then back down at my bottle of water.
"Do you mind…?" He trailed off. I eyed him again and slowly nodded. I tried not to look at him. I found it…distracting. I pulled the apple out of my pocket. "I’m Alexander Johnson, by the way." He introduced in a thick accent. I shook his open hand and then glanced back down. I had no idea why a senior was talking to a freshman such as myself.
"Seirnali Bray." I replied meekly, biting my lip and locking my gaze on the fruit in my hand.
"So, you’re from America?" He asked. I nodded. I was quiet for a while.
"Yeah, my dad got a job here in England." I explained. He nodded in understanding. I smiled inwardly.
"Seirnali . Wake up." He shook my shoulder. I opened my eyes; tired. My vision focused on his smiling face. The light bulb went off in my head.
"I remember you!" I exclaimed. He looked at me in pure concern.
"Did you hit your head too?" He laughed regarding my slip and fall in the kitchen.
"What? No. I mean, from England. I remember you. You sat with me at lunch one day, and helped me in the hallway." I rambled and then bit my lip to shut myself up. He smiled and nodded.
"Yeah. I remember. Yeah, you still bite your lip you know. I remember almost every time I saw you, you would bite your lip at some time." He recollected. I grinned. It was true. I looked around and noted my surroundings.
"How did I get in here?" I asked, changing the subject.
" You fell asleep so I carried you in here." He elucidated. I nodded slowly. "But um, your parents are here, with Abby and Eric. They wanted to talk to you." He clinched his teeth. My head fell back on the pillow and my chest screamed in protest of the sudden movement. I winced.
"Yeah. Ok." I breathed and looked up at him and bit my lip. He rolled his eyes and picked me up. I smiled. He walked out to the living room and set me down on my feet. Vertigo hit me and I leaned against him for support.
"Can’t you walk anymore?" Eric commented. I glared at him.
"She broke a couple ribs Eric." He hissed his name. "So shut the f*** up."
Eric shrank back. Abby glared.
"What do you guys need?" I hissed. My dad looked at me hesitantly.
"Well, I was wondering, if you were coming to Abby’s wedding?." He finally asked. I gaped. They wanted to see if I was going to Abby’s wedding?! Is that all they cared about?!
"You all came here to see if I was coming to her wedding?" I breathed in frustration. My mom nodded. "And, you weren’t concerned about your daughter’s wedding, at all?" I drawled. They exchanged looks with one another.
"Well…when is it?" My dad asked, feigning interest.
"May 15th."
"Well, that’s pretty close to Abby’s wedding Seirnali . I don’t know if we could make it…" My mom concluded. I raised an eyebrow in incredulity. My dad didn’t make eye contact with me.
"Well then that’s a good point. I guess I won’t be able to go to Abby’s wedding then. It’s just to darn close to mine." I clicked in pretend disappointment. "Oh well." I shook my head and coughed. My hand flew to my ribcage and I groaned.
" Are you ok?" My parents asked in synchronization. I glared at their false sympathy.
"I’m fine." I clinched. My parents exchanged another look.

"Well, Seirnali , we have to go." They got up from the couch. I nodded at them as the walked out the door to their car. My dad glanced at me in sympathy as he shut the door.
"So, you’re not coming?" Abby asked me. I shook my head. I wasn’t surprised that she was still getting married to him even though I told her that he was a jerk.
"Sorry." I said vacuously. She glared.
" You know, you can be such a selfless, conceited, b**** sometimes! I mean all you care about is yourself, and how the world has to revolve around you." She paused. " No ones coming to my wedding, no one cares about me." She mimicked. " I mean, all that crap about how Eric abused you? Come on, no one believes that s***. I mean, do you have to lie to get attention? Seriously!? Are you that needy!?" She shouted. Eric grinned at me malevolently. Alex took a step forward and I grabbed the back of his shirt. He looked back at me.
" You think I lied about Eric?" I laughed darkly. " Well, I guess all those scars are from me then." I added. Alex looked at me immediately.
"Prove it." Abby challenged. I pulled my shorts up my thigh to reveal the long scar that ran from my hip to my knee. Eric had gotten wasted one day and used his pocket knife. He had torn a long line in my jeans that I had to throw away once I got home. Abby gawked. "Well…I mean. That doesn’t prove that he did it." She tried to disprove me. I rolled my eyes.
"Whatever, believe what you like." I said dismissively. Alex glared at Eric and then shot his glance back to me.
"You bastard!" Alex shouted. Abby stood up immediately and Eric got up and rested his hands on her shoulders.
"Seirnali , you better shut the hell up before I break another rib." Eric threatened. Abby stared at him with an open mouth. Eric looked away from her.
"Well then, that’s settled." I sighed in discontent. I turned around and headed to the bedroom door so I could lay down. I heard Abby storm out the door.
"Abby! Abby, wait! Come on!" Eric chased after her. Alex walked shortly in the room after they all left. I motioned for him to come lie down beside me. He sighed and came to console me. I rested my head on his chest and he kept his arms to his side.
"You can touch me you know." I stated. He looked down at me.
"I don’t want to hurt you." He explained. I shook my head and placed his arm on my waist and closed my eyes. He ran the tips of his fingers down the mark on my leg. His hand went back up my thigh and edged his fingers up my shorts. I grinned and nudged his leg with my foot to show my disapproval. He laughed and placed his hand back on my waist.

Chapter 65
* Where Did I Go Right? How Did I Get You? I Don’t Know How I Did. But Somehow I Know Do.*
WWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW
A couple weeks had passed and it was the beginning of April. It was a little more than a month until I got married. I was starting to freak out, a little.
"I was wondering, if maybe, before we went to Aruba, if we could stop by London to see my parents? I mean, if you want." He hugged my waist. I actually wouldn’t have minded it. I smiled at him in support. He saw straight through me. " You don’t want to do you?" He half smiled. My face twisted in panic, afraid he was offended.
"No, no, no! I want to meet them really. And I know you want to see them and everything. It’s not that I don’t want to. Really." I blurted out.
"But?" He raised his eyebrows for me to clarify my hesitance. I bit my lip.
"What if…they don’t…like…me?" I asked slowly. He guffawed.

"That’s why? Oh, no. You don’t have to worry about that. Trust me, they’ll love you." He comforted. I looked at him quizzically.
"How do you know that they’ll like me?!" I asked in disbelief. He shook his head.
"I might have spoken about you when you were in England, and whenever you were gone…" He admitted sheepishly.
"Were you saying nice things about me? Or were you lying to make me seem nice?" My words came out in a rush. He put his index finger on my lips to shush me.
"They want to meet you. Ok? They’ll love you. I promise." He looked at me. I nodded and looked to the side. He laughed again and carefully pulled me against his chest. " I was thinking we could spend a week or two there. I could show you around and we could have some fun." He smiled at me cheekily. I rolled my eyes. "And then, we could go from there to Aruba." He finished. I nodded again. " I was thinking we would leave the 29th of April, get there, spend a week and a half in England, and then to Aruba?" He asked for my opinion. I affirmed.
"But if they don’t like me, then I’m leaving." I stated, moving to the dresser to gather all the clothes that needed to be washed. He chuckled. "Where would we stay?" I wondered, not looking at him.
"Well, I don’t really know. I’ll have to ask my mum. I’m sure she’ll want us to stay there though. She likes having guests since its just her and my dad." He trailed off. "Is that ok? I mean we can get a hotel or something." He added quickly. I shook my head.
" Whatever you want." I answered passively as I made my way to the washer. He followed me as usual. " You have any clothes you want washed?" I looked up at him. He shook his head slowly. I shrugged and started the washer. He warily placed his palm on my chest.
"Does it feel any better?" He asked quietly. I nodded.
"I’ve had worse, but it doesn’t hurt as much when I move." I answered, chipper. He nodded and then he was quiet for a minute. I studied his facial expression. His full lips were pursed and his dark eyebrows were slightly pulled together. His gray eyes looked up at me.
"I love you." He breathed. I blinked a few times.
"…I love you too." I repeated. It felt weird to actually say it. I would usually shorten it. Like ’you too’, or something like that. I smiled at my success.
Another week passed. I was getting more nervous by the day about meeting his parents. He would roll his eyes at my anxiety. I had to get my mind off of it, so I called Anna and asked her if she wanted to shop for a dress for her and Katrina. She agreed whole heartedly. Alex was going to stay home and call his mother. Anna came by and picked me up. Katrina was ecstatic to see me. Why, I had no idea.
When we got to the mall, Katrina immediately ran to the dress shop. Anna rolled her eyes and followed her. She looked good for her age. Dark brown hair that was cut short. Slender and a sweet disposition. Her daughter looked similar to her in many ways. James looked like his father, whom left.
We looked at one white dress with black edging on it for Anna. She liked it. And so did I, it coordinated with my dress. Then came Katrina. Of course she wanted to look at every single one. I sighed.
"How about this one?" She held up a purple dress. I shook my head.
"I think this one would be better on you Katrina." I held up a dark rose red dress that had black detail on it. I found it rather attractive. It had flowers on it. Katrina eyed it.
"Do you like it?" She asked. I nodded. "Ok then, I’ll try it on." She grabbed it and ran into the dressing room. Anna shook her head and laughed. She came back out and twirled. I nodded in approval. Anna bought the two dresses with a huge smile on her face.
"I can’t believe you’re getting married! Are you nervous?" She blurted once we were out of the store. I nodded timidly. "Don’t be! You’re going to love your wedding. And of course, Alexander’s an amazing guy. You’ll be so happy!" She poured.
" Yeah. I’m just nervous because we’re going to England to see his parents before we leave for Aruba." I confided. She smiled at me supportively.
"I’m sure they’ll love you Seirnali . Everyone likes you." She grinned. I nodded. She put her arm around my shoulder. "Don’t worry." She repeated.
She dropped me off and walked through the front door.
"She can’t wait to see you." He greeted. I groaned and sat down next to him. "My dad’s quite excited too." He added. I smiled in sarcasm.
"Perfect."

Chapter 66
* Makes No Sense To Me. No, It Isn’t Clear, But Somehow You’re Standing Here. Then Something Gets To Me. It’s That Nothing Is Wrong.*
õõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõõ
I sat on the end of the couch, under a warm blanket and watched him play his guitar. It was nice.
" Is it hard to learn how to play that?" I inquired when he paused. He looked at me and shook his head grinning.
"Nope. You want to try." He offered. I bit my lip, unsure. He rolled his eyes. "Come here." He gestured to his open lap. I sighed in defeat and I crawled over to him and sat in his lap. "There." He placed the instrument on my legs.
"Ok, what do I do?" I shook my head. He put his hands on mine and placed them on the guitar. He explained all the strings to me. I was utterly lost. I took a sharp breath and winced. He looked at me in concern and I shook my head and he turned his attention back to what we were doing.
"Got it?" He asked. I nodded slowly, but in actuality I hadn’t a clue. He smiled at me in support. "Go ahead then." He urged. I looked at the six strings then back at him. He looked at me expectantly. I plucked one of the strings and it produced a melodic tone. "See? Easy." He exemplified. I played a couple more notes in no specific tone or order. It didn’t sound horrible. I looked back at him and grinned.
"You play it better though." I complimented him. He rolled his eyes and I moved my hands out of the way. He placed his hands back on the guitar and resumed playing. I leaned my head back on his chest. I watched him intently as he swiftly played each note.
After a while, he placed the guitar on the floor and wrapped his arm around my waist and laid down on the couch.
"So, are we staying at your parents’ house when we’re in England?" I asked, looking at the back of the couch.
"Well she wants us to, but, we don’t have to." He offered. I shook my head.
"No, that’s fine. I don’t mind." I smiled up at him and he nodded. I tried to stay positive about meeting his parents, but it didn’t really work. I had a week and a half left to prepare myself. I still had to pack my suitcase, and all that stuff. He already made all the reservations though, so that was taking care of.
I sighed and got up for something to drink. He came in shortly after I grabbed a glass.
"Do you want to go out?" He asked. I looked at him and tilted my head to the side.
" Uh…sure." I agreed and followed him to the bedroom and watched him put his shoes on. I slipped my sandals on and he pulled me to the door. We got in the car drove to a random restaurant. It was nice; traditional. We were taken to a table and he sat next to me rather than across from me.
We both got hamburgers and I got a pop. He got a beer.
"Are you still nervous?" He asked without any reference. I knew what he was talking about though. I nodded guiltily. He chuckled. "I don’t see what your so anxious about." He took a sip from his glass and looked at me. I shrugged.
"I don’t know. I don’t want to make a bad impression I guess. I mean what if they end up thinking I’m some crazy, neurotic, snobby , conceited, slut. Or some--."
"Who thinks that about you!?" He asked in a serious tone even though he was smiling.
"I don’t know! They might!"
"Yeah, well, you don’t exactly give off that vibe, so I think you’re safe." He popped a french-fry in his mouth.
"But what if?" I whispered in sarcasm. He looked at me lowered his gaze to mine.
"Stop. Worrying." He whispered back and kissed me. I sighed once he pulled back. "Here." He held up a french-fry. I sighed and ate it. He grinned and pulled me against his shoulder.

Chapter 67
*Where Did I Go Right? How Did I Get You? How Come All This Blue Sky Is Around Me, And You Found Me?*
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I pulled out a few long sleeved shirts, shot sleeved shirts, sweaters, a jacket, jeans, and three different pairs of shoes and crammed them into the suitcase. He watched with a smirk on his face.
"Do you want me to put the whole dresser in there or not?" He laughed. I shot a glare at him and then turned my attention back to the clothes.
"Ok, this half is for England, this half is for Aruba and then…" I motioned with my hands and then I pulled another suitcase out. "This is for the dress." I huffed.
"Ok then. That’s dealt with." He grabbed my waist.
"Wait, I forget my shorts." I pulled away and he sighed in frustration. I stuffed some shorts and a tank top to sleep in, in the open space. He grabbed my waist again and kissed me.
"Can you relax for ten minutes?" He murmured against my mouth. I wrapped my arms around his neck.
"I guess." I gave in. He smirked. I could be such a pushover sometimes. He pressed me against the wall and I arched my back so that my torso wouldn’t hit the wall. He ran his hands up my shirt and rubbed his thumb against my skin. He abruptly pulled away and he walked to the bed and pushed the suitcases on the floor. I got caught up in the moment and pushed him on the bed. He grinned and pulled me on top of him.
He rolled over till he was hovering over me. He nibbled on my ear lobe and ran his hands back up my shirt. His fingertips brushed my ribcage as he carefully pulled my shirt up over my head. My head fell back on the pillow and he crushed his lips on top of mine. He rested all his weight on me, but was careful about my torso. I pulled on his lip with my teeth and he parted his mouth.
Sure, this was getting my mind off the fact that in a couple of days, I would have to get on a plane and go to England. But, it was still there, in the back of my mind, taunting me. I switched my mind back to the present. He kissed my collarbone and made his way to my neck then down my jaw line and stopped at the corner of my mouth.
"Are you still thinking about it?" He whispered. I sighed loudly and then nodded. He groaned at my facial expression and sat up and pulled me with him and placed me on his lap. He brushed the hair off my neck and rubbed where my muscles were tensed. I sighed again. He pushed the straps down my arm and I looked at him. He rolled his eyes dismissively and turned my head back forward with his hand. I closed my eyes in defeat.
"Now," He started after a while. "You have to promise me that you are going to stop freaking out. Ok? Promise me." He breathed in my ear. I nodded numbly.
"I promise." I sighed.
"Good." He pulled away from my ear and placed his lips on the nape of my neck. His breathing on my neck sent involuntary shivers down my back. He slowly slid down so that we were lying down instead of sitting up. I shivered from my lack of a shirt. He pulled a blanket over me and I smiled. "I love you." He grinned.
"I love you too."

I stared out the window then quickly paused to look at the clock. It was one in the morning. I returned to looking out the window. Alex had his face nuzzled against my neck and was out cold. I sighed. I didn’t know why I couldn’t fall asleep. Guess I had to much on my mind. There was a lot. His parents of course. But there was other stuff. Deeper stuff.
What if, later, he would realize that I wasn’t what he wanted. What triggered this little idea? Angela. She was the epitome of perfection. She had the looks, the personality. Everything. If he could do that good, why would he sink down to me? Of course, I was obsessed with him. Well, maybe obsessed wasn’t the right word. But it was the only one I could think of. But, if he wanted to move on, I wouldn’t stop him. I wanted him to be happy. Granted I would be crushed, but…
Was I not what he thought? Would he got tired of what he had? I shook my head to clear it of the questions.
I huffed and slowly moved his arm off my waist and got up and headed to the kitchen. I didn’t bother to turn the light on in the kitchen since the moonlight streaming in through the window lit it up enough for me. I grabbed a glass of water and sat down at the little two chair table. I didn’t really drink anything out of it I just ran my finger along the edge of the clear glass. I sighed as I thought how emotionally screwed up I was.
The light suddenly came on and I blinked to let my eyes adjust to it.
"What are you doing in here?" He slurred. I turned around to look at him.
"Uh, I couldn’t sleep." I answered blankly, trying to hide everything. He gave me his unconvincing look. I looked away.
"C’mon. Something’s bugging you." He pried. I shook my head dismissively.
"It’s not your parents." I clarified. He looked at me in a more concerned fashion.
"Then what is it?" He put his hands on the back of the chair I was sitting in. I looked back up at him and smiled.
"Nothing. Ok. It’s my problem, I’m just thinking is all." I paused. He pulled me up out of the chair and seized my face and forced me to look at him.
"Tell me. Please." He breathed. It was hard not to tell him when he did this.
"I was just thinking…" I started. He raised his eyebrows waiting for me to continue. " what if one day, you finally come to your senses and realize that I’m not what you want." I faltered. He looked at me both sympathetically and seriously.
"Why would you think that?" He whispered. I shook my head and shrugged.
"Alex, honestly. Compare me to Angela for just a second." I demanded. He looked at me with a flint of anger in his eyes.
"There isn’t a comparison." He declared sternly. He closed his eyes tightly and then his expression softened. " You want to know something? To tell you the truth, when I was dating Trish, Angela, and Jessica, I was thinking of you. I know it had been a few years since I had seen you, but I couldn’t stop thinking about you. When you left England, I was devastated. I was going to ask you out, but you left and I never saw you again. I never dated anyone because I thought by some chance I would see you again."
"When I finally realized that it was never going to happen, I started dating. But, I was always thinking about you. And when I found you again, I didn’t even want to date you." He paused and I gave him a hurt, confused expression. He smiled and shook his head. " Nope. I wanted to marry you." He finished. I smiled. "There. So I think that answers your question; you’re everything I want."
I nodded and wiped the tear off my cheek with back of my hand. He pulled me against his chest and he sighed.
"Can you come to bed now?" He asked. I laughed and nodded and shut the light off.

Chapter 68
*Where Did I Go Right? How Did I Get You?! I Don’t Know How I Did. But Somehow Now I Do. Somehow Now I Do. Now I Do…*
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"Get up." He whispered in my ear. "Time to go to England." He sang. I groaned. The days went by to fast. I looked at the clock. It was five in the morning. "You can sleep on the plane. I promise." He assured as he coaxed me out of the bed. I shook my head profusely. He flipped the covers back and grabbed my waist and stood me up on the floor. He took my tank top off and pulled a clean shirt over my head. His hands drifted to my waist.
"I can dress myself." I slapped his hand with my eyes half open. He grinned.
"I don’t mind doing it."
I pushed him off me and walked over to the dresser and pulled out a pair of dark jeans and put them on. He was extremely excited at seeing his parents again. I pretended to be. He walked past me into the kitchen as I made my way to the bathroom. I did my hair and put some makeup on to make me look halfway decent. Alex’s ‘you look beautiful’ crap didn’t help me any. I walked back out and he pushed a plate of waffles in front of me. I blinked a few times and then sat down on the bed and ate. I watched him walk in and out of the house, carrying all the suitcases to the car. I sighed and put the plate in the sink and went to brush my teeth. I walked back to the bed to lay down, but he grabbed me by the waist before I could fall onto the mattress.
"No, no, no." He scorned. I whined as he drug me to the car. I wanted to sleep! He sat me down and buckled my seatbelt seeing that I was to oblivious to do it myself. "You can sleep now." He laughed and kissed my forehead before he closed my door. I nodded and closed my eyes.
" We’re here." He nudged. I opened my eyes. Not as tired, but still tired. I nodded and got out of the car. He handed me my suitcases and I followed him through the airport. We got the tickets and went through customs. I leaned on him a majority of the time. He laughed.
I was half asleep by the time we got to that whole security part. You know, where they have you do all this pointless s*** so they know you’re not a terrorist. Walking through the door that picks up any trace of metal, the wand just to catch what the door didn’t. I groaned. After all the suitcases were on the plane, we could finally sit down in the airport.
I sat on his lap because I thought that the chairs were uncomfortable. I had my head on his shoulder and my eyes closed. He rubbed his hand up and down my arm.
"Just think, in a few weeks, we’ll be getting married in Aruba." He whispered as he kissed down my neck. I laughed.
"Are you going to make out with me in front of your parents?" I yawned. He pulled away.
"Not in front of them." He pointed out lasciviously. I rolled my eyes. After about twenty minutes, they finally called our flight. I got up rather reluctantly. He grabbed my hand and dragged me to the plane. We handed the flight attendants the tickets and walked down to the plane. He ended getting first class, which meant I could sleep comfortably. He led me to the seats and I sat down. I attempted to put the seatbelt together but I was to exhausted to figure it out. He sighed and did it for me. I thanked him as I closed my eyes again.
I woke up some time later, it was bright with everyone’s windows open. I recoiled against the light momentarily. I felt better. Rested. I felt him looking at me.
"What?" I asked.
"Are you going to stay up? Because I’m lonely and would like someone to talk to." He explained. I nodded and turned my body around so that I was facing him. I leaned my head on his shoulder again and he brushed the hair out of my face.
"How long was I asleep?" I looked up at him.
"Five hours." He rolled his eyes. I grinned sheepishly.
"How much longer till we get there?" I wondered. He looked thoughtful for a moment.
"Two and a half, three hours." He estimated. I nodded. "You thirsty?" He pAlexed. I shook my head. He picked up my hand and rubbed his thumb across the ring. "You know, my mum’s going to yell at me for not getting you something better." He grinned. I laughed.
"Well, I love it. So that should make her happy right?"
"Let’s hope so." He chuckled.
I found that when Alex was excited, he was quite the chatterbox. Which, made the remaining hours go by much faster. He talked about everything. Everything. I didn’t complain though. I found it rather refreshing.
"You were expelled from school twice?"
"Yep." He grinned. I shook my head.
"What did you do?"
"That’s not really important now is it." He smiled down at me, concealing it all. I eyed him. He shook his head and pulled me up out of the seat.
"What are you doing?"
"We’re here." He laughed. I flushed and he led me out of the plane. It had been a few years since I was here, but I didn’t remember a thing of it. I think I had blocked it all out. I followed him to where you wait to get your luggage. I never liked waiting for it. What if it never came?! He soothed my anxiety though when he came back with the suitcases. We went to get our passports checked and then we were outside. Apparently, he rented a car for us while we were staying here. I waited anxiously as he went to get it. He came back with a sporty looking black car. I rolled my eyes as he got out. "What?"
"Nothing." I sighed as I helped him put the luggage in the trunk. I sat down in the car and started shaking, my nerves finally catching up to me. He sat down and looked at me.
"You promised." He reminded. I shook my head. He laughed as he drove out of the airport. "You’re going to be fine. I promise." He repeated as he drove to the house. I tried to believe him but I found that I was having a very difficult time doing so.
Half an hour later, he parked across the street from his parents house and turned the ignition off and looked at me sitting there stiff in the seat. I turned my head to look at his expression. He had his eyebrow raised and was looking at me apathetically. I looked back out the window. He sat there with the same expression on his face.
"Stop looking at me!" I demanded. "I’m getting there ok!?" I panicked.
"By the time you get out the door, we’re going to have to go to the airport again." He mocked. I sighed and relaxed my shoulders. He leaned over and looked at me again and brushed the hair away from my eyes.
"Please? For Me?" He looked at me. I bit my lip. I wasn’t going to win this.
"Fine." I whined. He grinned and quickly kissed me.
"Thank you." He jumped out of the car and I got out and watched him hurriedly pulled the things out of the trunk. I looked at him desperately. He shook his head and handed me my suitcase. He took the other two and wrapped his arm around my waist. "Ready?" He looked at me eagerly.
"Nope."

Chapter 69
*…Tonight The Sunset Means So Much. The One Thing That You Know, Will Never Touch.*
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He practically had to pull me to the door of his prior home. We walked up the three steps and he stopped at the door and knocked on it. I hadn’t breathed since I left the car.
"Breathe." He whispered in my ear and then proceeded to kiss the hollow beneath it.
"You’re not helping me!" I hissed under my breath. He chuckled and then pulled away right as the door opened. A sweet looking woman stood at the door. She possessed some of Alex’s qualities. She had a huge smile on her face as she looked at her son.
"Alexander!" She squealed and opened her arms for him to hug her. He let go of my waist and walked up to embrace her. I smiled, watching them. She was clearly ecstatic at seeing her seeing him again after some odd years.
"Hey mum." He replied. She pulled away and grabbed his face with her hands.
"Oh, you look so much older!" She exclaimed. I thought about running back to the car and they wouldn’t notice. I eyed the car warily. It was quiet for split second. I looked back to them. She caught my eye and she pushed Alex away. "You must be the Seirnali that we’ve heard all about." She looked at me warmly. I smiled tentatively. Alex wrapped his arm back around my waist.
"Seirnali , this is my mum, Clare. Mum, this is Seirnali Bray." He introduced. I smiled again, hoping I wasn’t giving her a horrible impression right off the bat.
"It’s so nice to meet you Mrs. Johnson." I said, trying to make my voice audible. She pulled me into a hug.
"Please, sweetie, call me Clare." She stated. I nodded as she pulled away so she could look at me. She smiled again. "Alex was lucky to get a girl as beautiful as you." She exclaimed. My face turned a dark shade of crimson and I looked down at the ground.
"Thank you." I mumbled. She looked at Alex again.
"Alex! She’s so skinny! Aren’t you feeding her!?" She demanded. Alex rolled his eyes.
"Yes mum." He sighed. She laughed.
"Please come in." She led me to the living room. I looked around at the nicely decorated house. It was cozy. I looked back as Alex closed the door and put the suitcases out of the walkway. He smiled at me supportively. I smiled back. "Here. Sit, sit." She urged. I awkwardly sat down on the couch. "Are you hungry dear?" She asked politely.
"Oh, no. I’m fine." I replied as Alex sat down beside me and pulled me against his shoulder. She smiled at me and then looked at Alex. " Thank you for letting me come stay at your house Mrs.-- Clare." I corrected. She smiled at me warmly.
"It’s fine dear. I’ve been dying to meet you since he was in high school." She laughed. "Alex, she looks exhausted! What’s wrong with you?!" She accused. I chuckled, enjoying her criticism towards him.
"She’s fine. She slept for five hours on the plane." He sighed. She shook her head.

"Are you tired? You can go rest in the guest room if you’d like." She offered.
"Oh, no. I’m fine. But thank you." I bit my lip. He chuckled beside me I looked at him briefly. Then, a small white dog jumped on my lap. I jumped at first and then grinned. "Who’s this?" I asked. Alex picked her up in pure joy.
"Patty." He explained. I smiled at the little dog. "My dog." He continued. He sat the dog and his lap and stroked her. Patty walked over to my lap and I hesitantly petted her. She laid down on my lap and I laughed. He scoffed. "I’m home for three minutes and she completely forgets about me." I laughed. "Where’s dad?" Alex directed the remark to his mom.
"Upstairs." She looked up at the staircase. "Richard! Your son’s here for goodness sakes!" She shouted. After a minute or two of sublime stillness his dad came down the staircase. He was tall, with black, but graying hair. I looked between his parents and then at Alex. I could see little similarity. Alex got up and gave his dad a quick hug. He came back and pulled me up.
"This is my dad, Richard. Dad, Seirnali Bray." He repeated his introductions. His dad grinned.
"Pleasure to meet you Mr. Johnson." I greeted.
"None of that. Call me Richard." He allowed. I nodded as he hugged me. "It’s nice to finally meet you. Alex didn’t tell us how stunning you were." He remarked as he let me go. I blushed again and thanked him.
"Come on. Let me show you to the guest room." Alex grabbed my waist and led me to the staircase. Patty was right on my heels. He rolled his eyes and scoffed again. We got to the door to the room and his dog ran in eagerly. He shut the door and I sat down on the bed and looked at him. "See? That wasn’t so bad." He grinned. I shook my head. "What?"
"Are you kidding?!" I asked incredulously. "They hate me!"
"Yeah, I picked that up to." He said in a sarcastic tone. "They love you. What are you talking about?" He said seriously as he kicked his shoes off and laid comfortably on the bed. I shook my head again and looked at him. "Well, Patty loves you." He laughed as the dog hopped up on the bed. I looked at him seriously. "Why do you think that they hate you?" He looked at me with a passive expression.
"I don’t know. People just generally don’t like me Alex." I sniffed. He laughed and waved his hand for me to lay down beside him. I sighed and did so. He put my head on his chest.
"I think you’re imagining things." He kissed my hair. " You’re here. It’s over with. Just calm down and relax. Alright?" He suggested. I nodded and closed my eyes. "Tired?" I shrugged. He stood up and pulled me along with him. "I’m going to go get our stuff. You want to stay up here or come along?" He offered.
"I’ll come." I rolled my eyes. He grabbed my hand and led me back downstairs and handed me one of the suitcases.
"Alex. Don’t make her carry that!" Clare scorned at the foot of the stairs.
"Oh, Clare. It’s fine. He’s actually been carrying me around all day, it’s ok." I assured. His mom gave him a reprimanding look.
"Alright." She smiled. "Dinner should be ready in a little bit." She closed. Alex nodded his head fervently and then hastily led me back up the stairs. I placed the suitcase softly on the floor and he dropped the other two. I rolled my eyes. He came up behind me and moved my hair to one side of my neck and kissed me. He let me go and I pulled my shoes off and crawled onto the bed and laid down. I watched him go and lock the door and then turn back towards me.
"What are you doing?" I tilted my head to the side wondering, but I think I already knew. He grinned at me and took his shirt off. I quizzically raised my eyebrow as he crawled on top of me. I rolled my eyes as he molded his lips around mine. His hands instantaneously started pulling my shirt up over my head. Then, he hungrily ran his lips up and down my neck. He stopped at the base of my ear and kissed under my jaw. His hands moved across my stomach up to my neck. I moaned as his tongue slipped between my parted lips.

His insatiable lips brushed against my collarbone as I knotted my hands in his hair. I heard a knock on the door, he completely ignored it.
"Dinner’s ready." His mom told us from behind the closed door. Alex broke away for a second.
"Ok." His voice was uneven as he responded. I heard her footsteps fade as she made her way back downstairs. He resumed kissing me, his hands drifting down to the my waist and toying with the button on my jeans. My hands went down to his to move them but he grabbed both my wrists with one hand and pinned them on the headboard behind me. He grinned haughtily against my mouth as he undid the button and tugged at the zipper. He broke away so I could breathe and moved back to my neck.
"Aren’t we going to go eat?" I panted. He shook his head.
"It can wait."
"Well, I’m hungry and would like to eat." I enforced. He sighed in frustration and defeat as he looked at me.
"Fine." He conceded as he rolled off me and jumped up off the bed. I laid there and looked at him, still catching my breath. He grabbed my hand and pulled me up to him. He kissed me again as he pulled the zipper on my jeans back up and then broke away to hand me my shirt. I thanked him and pulled it back over my head. He had his shirt back on when I looked back up at him.. He unlocked the door and pulled me against his side. "Come on then. Let’s go eat."

Chapter 70
* Like The Feeling. The Real Thing. You Got To Reach Out For The Sweet Dream. But Somehow The Darkness Wakes Me Up.*
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"Thanks for dinner Clare. It was really nice." I smiled and thanked her as we made our way back to the living room. She beamed.
"Thank you. It wasn’t a problem." She added. I nodded and looked out their window. It was starting to get dark. Alex pulled me down next to him on the couch and I folded my legs under me. His parents sat in the chairs arranged around the television. "So, has Alexander been driving you insane yet?" She laughed. I chuckled and shook my head.
"No. Not yet. He’s actually been taking very good care of me." I clarified. She nodded in joy and then sighed.
"I’m so happy that you two are together. Alex would talk about you nonstop during school." She pointed out. Alex cleared his throat and shot his mom a glare. I looked at him and he grinned. "Oh, I almost forgot. Did you want anything for dessert? There’s some cookies. I think we have some ice cream. There is some hot chocolate mix too, Alex." She smiled as his face lit up. He looked at me.
"I’m going to make some of that." He kissed me quickly before he got up. I flushed and then Patty jumped on my lap. I smiled and pet her as she laid down.
"How many people are you going to have at your wedding?" Clare asked, curiosity dripping with every word. I looked up from the furry animal on my lap.
"Um." I counted in my head. "Not including me and Alex, four." I answered. Her face was full of surprise.
"Who all is that then?"
"My aunt, her two children, and Alex’s friend, Jake." I named.
"What about your parents?"
"Oh, they aren’t very involved in my life." I tried to smile. She looked at me sympathetically. Alex walked out, balancing two nearly overflowing cups of hot chocolate. I found it…funny almost at how seeing him instantaneously cheered me up. He grinned back at me and handed me a cup. I thanked him as he slowly sat down next to me again. I took a small sip and placed it on the coffee table in front of me.
He drank practically half of it and then placed it next to mine. I rolled my eyes.
"What?" He mouthed. I shook my head and yawned. He pulled me against him and I rested my head against his chest. Patty looked up at me from the carpet and I leaned forward slightly and picked her up. "Amazing. My dog loves you more than me." He shook his head. I laughed.
"Yep." I confirmed.
"Alex? What happened to your cheek?" Clare scrutinized. I looked up at Alex. He still had a faint scar from his fight with Eric.
"I got in a fight." He shrugged. His dad smiled triumphantly.
"Did you win?" Richard asked. Alex nodded his head, grinning. His dad laughed. I went to take another drink but Alex’s arm was constricted around my waist. I tugged at his hand. He loosened his arm and I grabbed the cup and took another sip of it and sat back.
"Why were you fighting?!" Clare demanded of her son. He shrugged again.
"He ticked me off and he got what he deserved." He explained and then mumbled something inaudible. Clare gave him another chastising look. He ignored it and looked down at me. "Tired?" He asked as I yawned as if on cue. He looked at his parents. "I think we’re going to go to bed." He clarified. They nodded and I got up and winced and took in a sharp breath of air. He immediately stood up and grabbed me. "Does your ribcage hurt?" He asked worry painting his face.
"Yeah, but it’s not that. My foots asleep and it really hurts." I bit my lip. He sighed in relief.
"What happened to her ribs?" Clare asked concerned. I looked at her.
"Oh, klutzy me fell in the kitchen and I broke a couple of ribs. But I’m fine. I’ve broken a few before this." I dismissed the subject. She nodded warily.
"Well, if you need anything, let me know." She smiled supportively. I nodded and thanked her. Then, Alex abruptly picked me up and I yelped in surprise. He looked at me and grinned.
"I can walk." I noted.
"I know." He contradicted. " ’Night." He gave his valedictions and headed upstairs.
"It was nice to meet you Seirnali ." Clare shouted.
"Nice to meet you both." I shouted back before he slammed the door. I looked at him and he smiled at my expression. He carefully sat me down on the ground and then locked the door. "You know, quite frankly, it frightens me when you lock the door." I said with a hint of sarcasm.
"What’s there to be afraid of?" He whispered lustfully in my ear. I suddenly lost my ability to think straight as he slowly breathed on my neck. He turned me around so that I was facing him and I involuntarily started kissing him. He wrapped his arms around my waist and pulled my entire body against his. I virtually tore his shirt off and he broke away to take mine off and throw it on the ground next to his. I moved my hands around his neck and pulled him back up against me. His tongue greedily explored my mouth as his hands roamed my body. He started walking to the edge of the bed and something in my head clicked.
I knew what he wanted. He was guy. What did every guy want?
Sex.
Sure, Alex was different then most guys, but not that different. I almost laughed at my ignorance. I pulled away and he looked at me with that hazy look in his eyes.
"I have to take a shower." I breathed, mainly panting.
"Can’t it wait?" He kissed my neck and went straight to the hollow beneath my ear. My eyes fluttered and I bit my lip.
Well…
"No…" I managed to say. He sighed both in disappointment and frustration. He nodded numbly and let go of me. I shakily made my way to the door of the bathroom. Thankfully, it was in the room so I wouldn’t have to go out in the hallway. I quietly shut the door and turned the shower on. I took a deep breath and then laughed at myself for my blunt ignorance.
The hot water was very soothing. I almost didn’t want to get out, but I did. I took a wary breath of hot air and walked back out to the room. He was taking all the extra pillows off the bed and tossing them randomly across the room. I dodged one that he flung absentmindedly.
"Hey." I accused. He looked at me and grinned.
"Sorry." He smiled. I walked over and grabbed a tank top and pulled it over my head. I turned my head and he was staring at me.
"Do you mind?" I asked, waving a pair of shorts that I was going to change into. He grinned.
"What? We’re going to be married in a few weeks you know." He acknowledged. I nodded.
"I know."
"Then what’s the problem?"
"I’m very self conscious!" I admitted. He shook his head. "Turn around!" I demanded. He turned sharply on his heel and I started unzipping my jeans that I had put back on after I got out of the shower. He cocked his head towards me. "No, no, no." I scolded. He turned his head back forward. I quickly pulled my jeans off and slipped my shorts on. "Ok." I allowed. He turned back around and I crawled into bed. I heard a scratching noise on the door and he let out a exasperated sigh and walked to the door and opened it. Seconds later, I felt paws on my back. I laughed into the pillow.
"Off Patty." He picked her up and set her on the floor as he snuck under the covers and pulled me against his chest. "Good night." He kissed the nape of my neck.
"Good night." I repeated as I yawned. Patty jumped up and laid down in front of me. I chuckled. "Night Patty."

Chapter 71
*I’ve Felt This Emptiness Before. But All The Times That I’ve Been Broken, I Still Run Right Back For More.*
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My eyes closed shut once the sun streamed into them. I turned my head into the pillow and tried to fall back asleep. Alex crawled back under the covers and hugged me. It felt like he had a fever.
"Why are you wet?" I mumbled into the pillow.
"I just got out of the shower." He informed. I nodded. "Would you like to get up anytime soon?" He asked. I shook my head ardently. He sighed and I rested my head on his chest. He wasn’t wearing a shirt or jeans, just his briefs. I pushed him away.
"Go put some pants on!" I laughed. He got up and headed to his suitcase. I watched him as he put his jeans on and then he looked back at me.
"Happy?" He rolled his eyes. I shrugged. Someone knocked on the door. "Come in." Alex shouted. Clare opened the door.
"Morning. I was just wondering if waffles would be ok for breakfast." She looked at us. I nodded along with Alex. "Ok then. Good. It should be ready in a bit." She started closing the door but then halted. "Alex, put a shirt on!" She scolded. He sighed roughly and nodded. I giggled as she shut the door. He looked at me and I got up and grabbed a shirt and jeans and made my way to the bathroom. Patty jumped up once my feet hit the floor and followed me. He scoffed.
I finished and picked her up and walked back out to the bedroom. Alex was patiently waiting, sitting on the edge of the bed. I dropped the dog on his lap and he grinned. I figured I still had a good fifteen minutes, so I crawled back under the covers.
"Seriously?" He asked me. I nodded and closed my eyes. He sighed at me pathetically and tore the covers off. "Fine. If you don’t want to go downstairs with me…" He trailed off. It was quiet for a second. He grabbed my waist and gingerly threw me over his shoulder. I screamed in alarm and surprise and then clamped my hand over my mouth. He laughed hysterically as Patty barked at him in playful defiance.
"Look what you’ve done! Your parents are going to get mad at all the noise." I shouted over the barking and laughing. I wasn’t really helping the situation.
"Nah, when I was a kid, my sisters and I would make way more noise than this." He opposed. I hit his back.
"Put me down then!" I stipulated. He shook his head again and opened the door. My eyes widened. I didn’t exactly want his parents to see that he carried me around on his shoulder all the time. I mean, I don’t know exactly what wrong they would find it, but still! He started practically running down the stairs. "Alexander Thomas Johnson put me down right now!" I shouted his full name threateningly. He chortled as he set me down on my feet. I hit him repetitively on the arm. He grabbed my hand and wrapped his other arm around my waist and pulled me against him.

"Good morning to you too." He kissed my check. I rolled my eyes as Clare came in from the dining room.
"Morning." She greeted. I smiled up at her and she grinned back. "Did you two sleep alright?" She asked. I nodded and Alex laughed and nodded. "What about you Seirnali ? I know Alex snores sometimes."
"Told you." I hit his arm again. Clare laughed. He rolled his eyes, still unconvinced.
"Well, it’s ready, if you want to eat." She informed. Alex nodded and pulled me to the table. He pulled out a chair and sat me down and handed me a plate with a waffle on it. I smiled and thanked him as I watched him. He had been irrefutably happy since we got here. I mean, he was happy back home, but… I didn’t really know how to describe it. Clare walked back in a sat down across from us.
"Are you two going to do anything today?" She questioned as she poured some milk into her glass. I both nodded and shook my head at the same time and glanced at Alex.
"Mmhmm." He nodded, pulling the fork out of his mouth.
"We are?" I asked. He nodded again. "Then, what are we doing?"
"It’s a surprise." He grinned. I nodded and turned back to my plate. Clare sighed and rolled her eyes. I smiled.
"You’ll have to show me your dress later this week Seirnali ." She sat down. I grinned and nodded my head. "I can’t believe your getting married." She looked at Alex now. He smiled softly and shrugged.
"You can still come to the wedding you know." He suggested. Her face lit up.
"Well, didn’t you two already make all the reservations and everything?" She asked. I laughed.
"There’s four people coming. There isn’t really any reservations. No, I would love it if you could come." I pleaded. She had a look of consideration on her face.
"And dad could walk her down the aisle." Alex suggested. I like the idea compared to walking myself. Clare smiled again.
"I’ll talk to your father about it later today." She complied. I nodded happily. Alex got up out of his chair and then grabbed me and pulled me up.
"Time to go." He smiled. I looked at him, confused. He pulled me up to the bedroom and handed me my shoes. I pulled them on and then he pulled me back downstairs. "We’ll be back in a bit." He waved goodbye and shut the door. I winced against the blinding sun as he towed me along the sidewalk.
"Where are we going?!"
"You’ll see." He satiated. Oh well that helped a lot. I tried to think. We were in the capital of England. What is there to do? I couldn’t pin anything down, and gave up. We walked for a while. "Ok, close your eyes." He commanded. I eyed him and he looked at me expectantly. I sighed and closed my eyes. He grabbed my hand and started walking again. My feet felt the grass instead of the pavement.
"Where are we going?" I asked again. Was he going to leave me in the woods or something?! I mean, I knew he wouldn’t of course, but I was skeptical. He stopped walked and I bumped into him. "Sorry." I apologized. He chuckled and then let go of my hand and I heard him walking. He was leaving me in the woods! How dare he!?

He wrapped his arms around my waist and breathed into my ear. Ok, so he wasn’t leaving me in the woods.
"Ok, you can look now." He whispered. I slowly opened my eyes to see a nice green area with the trees placed in the perfect spots. Prismatic flowers were scattered across the green grass and there was a creek running next to a weeping willow. It was secluded and absolutely perfect. Beautiful.
" It’s…amazing." I gasped. He smiled. I liked it, a lot. But I didn’t know why exactly he brought me here. I didn’t ask.
" In high school, I wanted to ask you out, and take you here, for a date." He answered my unasked question. I nodded slowly, in awe. He pulled away and grabbed my hand again. I followed him in silence, admiring it all. He stopped once we were under the willow tree. I looked up at him and he motioned for me to sit down. I did so and he laid down next to me. He smiled and pulled me down so that I was laying instead of sitting. I moved until my head was on his chest.
"You like it?" He wondered after a few minutes. I nodded.
"Why did you want to take me here, in high school?"
" I don’t know. You were so reserved. I thought you might want to go somewhere secluded." He concluded.

"That’s really thoughtful. I would have said yes to you know." I paused. " I was actually waiting for you to ask me out. But, you never did." I laughed. "Until the last day I was here." I remembered. He chuckled. " Oh well." I sighed. He moved his hands from behind his head and placed them on my waist. I smiled and closed my eyes and listened to his heartbeat.
"So, do you like my parents?"
"Yeah. They’re pretty nice." I nodded.
"Well good. They love you by the way. My mum especially." He added. I tilted my head towards him.
"How do you know?"
"They told me. This morning, when you were still asleep, I went downstairs and talked to them. They really like you." He smiled down at me. I grinned back in satisfaction. A question was on the tip of my tongue, trying to get out. I didn’t exactly know if I should let it be said.
"Alex?"
"Hmm?"
"In school, if we barely knew each other; I mean never really spoke. Then when I left, why did you still want to be with me?" I paused and he looked at me, perplexed. "I mean, after all those years, why did you still want to go out with me? We hardly spoke in school and then I left." I tried to make all the words make sense. He smiled back, understanding what I was trying to get out. He moved me so that I was laying on him.
"Well." He started. "I guess that I wanted to get to know you. You were so quiet and nervous all the time. None of the girls at school really paid a ton of attention to me, and I guess I just really liked you. Whenever I talked to you, you were always so timid, it was kind of funny. In a cute way." He assured. I laughed. "When you left, I always regretted never asking you out though." He added, quietly. I lifted my head and kissed him.
"I love you." I pulled away.
"I love you too."

Chapter 72
* You’d Think That I’d Learn My Lesson By Now. You’d Think That I’d Somehow Figure Out. That If You Strike That Match You’re Bound To Feel The Flame.*
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Alex carried me to his house on his back. It was kind of funny. I had my legs wrapped around his waist and my arms around his neck. He reached the front door and he walked in.
"We’re home." He shouted, his voice reverberated throughout the house. I laughed and kissed his neck and removed my legs from around his waist; he helped me down on the floor. He pulled me against him and kissed me back. I heard someone come down the stairs and I went to pull away but he had his arms tightly around my waist. I rolled my eyes. He broke away as his dad reached the foot of the stairs. I felt my face get hot.
"Hello Seirnali . How are you?" He smiled at me warmly like nothing ever happened. Alex turned me around so my back was against his chest.
"Good, thank you. How are you?" I returned the question.
"Great." He replied and then made his way to the kitchen. Alex kissed down my neck once his dad was out of sight. I laughed lightly as he ran his hands up and down my body. Clare came in from the backyard and grinned.
"Oh, you’re back! Where did you go?" She questioned. Alex put his hands back on my waist.
"Oh, a nice little park." He smiled.
"Oh, that sounds nice." She smiled proudly at her son and then made her way to the kitchen. Alex towed me to the bedroom and I rolled my eyes. I noticed that the bed was made and everything, I smiled thoughtfully at his mom’s kindness. I took my shoes off and placed them carefully on my suitcase. He was looking at me suggestively when I turned around. I raised my eyebrow at him and then sighed and walked up to him and kissed him. He grinned against my mouth and pushed me against the wall. I ran my fingers through his hair and his hand twisted the lock on the doorknob and then moved back to my waist.
He pulled away and I frowned. I went and sat down on the bed and rested on my heels and watched him. He took his shoes off and then his shirt. He came up to me and pulled my shirt up over my head.

I grinned as he ogled for a minute or two, then he pushed my back down on the bed and I crawled back until my head found a pillow. He wasted no time to press his body against mine and I longingly ran my hands up his chest. His lips moved to my neck and I stifled a moan. He smirked and his hands moved towards my waist.
He swiftly undid his jeans. I hesitated for a second, then slipped his jeans off his hips. His fingers toyed with the button on my jeans and wavered there. He pulled on my bottom lip, asking. I nodded weakly and he expeditiously started pulling my jeans down my legs. He tossed my jeans on the floor next to his. I felt extremely self conscious.
He didn’t seem to notice my hesitance at all as he pressed his nearly stark body back against mine. I parted my lips as he ran his hand down my leg. My hands went to his neck and pulled him closer. He brought his hand back up to my waist and he kissed down my neck. I felt his hand go under my back, trying to reveal the territory under my collarbone. I pulled his hand out from under my back and he grinned.
His tongue slipped through my lips as his finger pulled on the elastic on my hips. I pushed him back. He looked down at me in puzzled disappointment.
"What?" He almost whined.
"I’m not having sex with you in your parents house!" I hissed under my breath.
"Why not?" He breathed in my ear.
Why does he have to make this so freaking hard?!
"Your parents are downstairs! It’s weird!" I argued. He kissed below my ear. He was not helping!
"So?" He contradicted.
"So. I’m not sleeping with you in your parents house. End of story." I forced. He sighed.
"Fine." He settled as he stood up and pulled me along with him. I bent down to grab my clothes that he threw on the floor. He watched me.
"Would you stop staring at me?!"
"Well, it’s kind of hard not to." He grinned. I shook my head and pulled my jeans back on, then my shirt. I huffed and then fell back on the bed. I lifted my head slightly and looked at him and rolled my eyes. He chuckled and pulled his jeans back on. He laid down beside me and sighed. "What do you want do to now?"
Later that day, I sat at the end of the couch, stroking Patty while Alex was sleeping on the rest of the couch. I sighed and looked at the dog.
"What am I going to do with him?" I asked her. She jumped up and put her paws on my chest. I laughed quietly then looked at Alex. He was laying on his stomach. I grinned and looked back to Patty. I carefully placed her on his back and she walked up to his neck. I watched her intently, trying to choke back the hysteria building in my throat. She started licking his neck and I bit my tongue. He stirred and Patty barked in his ear. He jolted and she jumped off his back and landed on the floor, barking at him. I laughed out loud and he looked at me.
"Why are you laughing?!" He stared at me groggily. I tried to speak, but I was laughing to hard. He glowered and rolled his eyes. I controlled my laughing and took a deep breath to steady myself.
"Nothing. I’m not laughing at anything." I lied. He looked at the dog.
"Oh shut it." He demanded. Patty stopped barking and wagged her little tail. He sighed and ruffled her head. His hand moved to the back of his neck and wiped the slaver off and wiped it on his shirt. I bit my lip. "Was that entirely necessary?"
"Perhaps." I snickered. He smirked and pulled me onto his lap.
"Are you going to apologize?" He grinned. I looked at him thoughtfully and pursed my lips. He raised his eyebrows and looked at me expectantly. I blew the air out of my cheeks and rolled my eyes.
"I’m sorry." I smiled coquettishly and kissed him. His parents went out to eat so we had the house to ourselves. He ran his hands up my back and laid my back against the couch. I hitched my leg on his hip and he forced his body against mine. He pulled on my bottom lip and I gave him what he wanted. I heard the front door knob turn and I pushed him off me. He looked up at the door and sat down and pulled me against him.
"We’re back." Clare shouted.
" Oh. Did you two have fun?" Alex asked nonchalantly.
"Yep." His dad answered from behind Clare. "What about you guys?" He returned the question.
"He slept the whole time." I sighed and rolled my eyes. He grinned. Clare looked at me and smiled.
"That sounds like him."

Chapter 73
* You’d Think That I’d Learn The Cost Of Love. Paid That Price Long Enough. But Still I Drive Myself Right Through The Pain. Well It Turns Out, I Haven’t Learned A Thing.*
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"Alex, I have to tell you, Seirnali ’s absolutely perfect for you." Clare praised. "She’s just so sweet." She continued. "But, she seems so shy."
"Yeah. She’s kind of been through some uh…stuff." Alex sounded awkward.
"What kind of stuff?"
"I don’t know if she would want me to say." Alex concealed. I honestly wouldn’t have cared. They were family and I had already told my family. I was laying in bed, they were downstairs talking. It was early in the morning and I was listening in on their conversation. What can I say? I like to eavesdrop when it concerns me. "Well…" Alex trailed off. I could picture Clare’s concerned facial expression. " Her first and only boyfriend abused her. And that particular man is getting married to her ex friend. Her parents practically abandoned her and they are obsessed with Eric and Abby." He paused. "So, she’s kind of timid after all that."
"Oh my God. That’s horrible." She breathed.
"Yeah." He didn’t know what else to say. I sighed and heard someone hastily making its way up the stairs. Before I could think of who it was, Patty jumped on my back and I laughed into the pillow.
" How could her parents do that to her? I mean, why aren’t they going to her wedding?"
"Well, apparently, it’s to close to Abby’s, so they can’t make it. And, they gave Abby Seirnali ’s wedding date. So we had to get a new one." He scoffed. I got up and picked out some clothes and got changed, still listening to them. " I don’t know. I don’t particularly care for them anyway so…" He didn’t finish his sentence. I picked my new companion up, after I finished my hair, and slowly walked down the stairs. I reached the living room and Alex looked up at me and grinned. "You’re up early."
"Yeah." I walked over to them.

"Good morning Seirnali ." Clare smiled up at me, unaware I was listening to them earlier.
"Good morning." I replied as Alex pulled me down on his lap. "And good morning to you." I looked at Alex. He kissed me and my cheeks turned a dark shade of crimson. He pulled away and laughed as I involuntarily bit my lip.
"Are you hungry?" Clare interrupted. I shook my head.
"Not at the moment, thank you though." I smiled. She nodded. I looked down at Patty and sat her down on the floor and she scuttled into the kitchen.
"Since you’re both here, I just wanted to let you know, that I talked with Richard last night and he gladly agreed to go to your wedding. And he was touched that you wanted him to walk you down the aisle." She giddied. I smiled.
"Oh that’s wonderful! I’m so glad that you can come Clare." I said sincerely. She got up and hugged me briefly before she made her way upstairs.

"Guess who." Alex covered my eyes as I sat on the bed. I gasped sarcastically.
"Patty! You learned how to talk!" I laughed. He rolled his eyes.
"No." He drawled in my ear. He moved his hands and I looked at him.
"Oh. Alex. It’s you." I joked.
"You sound so disappointed."
"I can deal." I kissed him. He pulled away and I looked at him and stood up. "What?"
"Turn around." He ordered. I turned around and faced my back to him. "Close your eyes." He murmured. I did so and let out a sigh. He moved all my hair to one side of my neck and then I felt his fingers run along the nape of my neck.
"What are you doing?"
"You’ll see." He moved his hands and turned me around. "You can look now." He allowed. I opened my eyes and looked at him. He was grinning. I didn’t know what the point was. He tipped my head down and I gasped.
"Oh my God, Alex! It’s beautiful!" I squealed. It was a necklace with a silver heart. In the center of the heart, there was a sapphire stone set there. Sapphire was my birthstone. It was an amazing necklace. "Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you!" I jumped up and he caught me and I kissed him repetitively.
"Your welcome." He said in between my kissing. I pulled back and he kept his hands up my waist so I wouldn’t fall. I looked at the necklace and looked at in awe. "You like it then?"
"Yes!" I kissed him again. He grinned. "But, what’s the occasion?" I asked. He shrugged.
" No occasion. I just saw it and thought you would like it." He admitted. I smiled at his consideration.
"I love it! Thank you!" I kissed him again. Clare walked in.
"What’s going on?" She peeked in the room warily. I turned my head towards the door and smiled.
"Oh sorry." I apologized for the screaming. "But, look what Alex got me!" I squealed again and jumped back to the floor and showed her the jewelry. "Isn’t it amazing?!" I tried to lower my voice. She smiled.
"Oh it’s beautiful."
"I know!" I agreed and went back to Alex and hugged him. Alex pulled me back and kissed me. "Thank you." I sighed went he broke off. Clare chuckled and made her way downstairs.

Chapter 74
* Sometimes I Think I’m Better Off, To Turn Off The Lights And Close Up Shop. And Give Up The Longing. Believing And Belonging.*
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"Seirnali ?" Clare asked from behind me.
"Hmm?" I turned around from looking out the window.
"I was wondering if maybe I could see you in your wedding dress?" She asked meekly. I smiled and nodded.
"Of course." I agreed wholeheartedly. Alex was out with his dad buying a tux for him and his dad. She grinned and followed me upstairs to the suitcase that I kept the dress in. I pulled it out and she gave me a minute to myself to put it on. I called her back in to have her help me tie the strings in the back.
"It’s beautiful." She gasped as I turned around. I smiled in return to her compliment.
"Thanks." It was quiet for a while.
"Are you excited?" She asked quietly. I nodded slowly.
"I’m actually really nervous." I laughed. "I mean don’t get me wrong. Alex is an amazing guy and I’m more than excited to marry him. But, I don’t know." I swallowed. "I guess, I’m just afraid that I’m not right for him. I’ve met one of his exes and she was so much more. You know?" I smiled apprehensively.
"Sweetie, don’t worry about that." She laughed. " He loves you more than anything in this world. Even Patty." She joked. I laughed tensely. " When he was in high school," She started and pulled me down to sit on the bed. " He came home one day and he was so happy." She sighed. " And later that day he started talking about you." She smiled at me. " And I mean nonstop!" She laughed. " When you went back home he was so depressed. For weeks. He moved to Oregon and dated a few girls. He never spoke about them on the phone like he talked about you though." She looked at me candidly. I smiled back at her.
"Thanks." I whispered. She nodded and hugged me.
"You look beautiful though." She added. I laughed. We heard the door open downstairs.
"Hello?" I smiled at the sound of Alex’s voice.
"Up here." Clare answered. I heard footsteps on the stairs and then Alex was at the doorway grinning.
"You look nice." He complimented. I laughed and got up and Clare helped untie the back. "I can help her mum." He shooed her out the door and she scoffed and rolled her eyes as she was pushed out the door. I chuckled as he undid the rest of the strings and then started pushing the dress down.
"I can take it from here thank you very much." I pulled away and he looked at me desperately. I rolled my eyes at him and walked into the bathroom. "Did you have fun?" I shouted through the closed door.
"I guess." He leaned against the door.
"Did you find a tux?"
"Yes I did." He answered proudly. I came out the door and he immediately grabbed my waist. I put my hands on his and looked at him. "What did you two talk about while I was gone?" He grinned, trying to pry the information from me.
"Oh you know. Stuff." I answered vaguely.
Later that night, I was lying under the covers with a book in my hand. I let out a sigh and continued to immerse myself in the words of the book. Patty was laying in my lap as I flipped another page. Alex was downstairs doing something so I was all alone; well, I had Patty though. I was one of those people who got so engrossed in a book that I tended to block out all the sounds and people around me.
Patty stuck her head under the open space between the book and my lap. She looked at me and licked my nose. I chuckled and placed the bookmark in and placed the book on the small nightstand next to me. I pushed the covers off and picked her up and headed downstairs in my shorts and a tank top. I felt like having popcorn.
I looked around when I got downstairs and no one was there. I shrugged and headed to the kitchen. I set Patty down in front of her bowl of water and dug through the cupboard. Why couldn’t I remember where Clare told me it was? I sighed in frustration and continued to look.
I finally found it and tore the wrapper off and placed it in the microwave and pressed the button. His parents were asleep so I was careful not to be to boisterous. I rapped my fingers on the counter; staccato, while the popcorn revolved. Someone put their hand over my drumming fingers.
"Impatient?" Alex chuckled in my ear. I rolled my eyes and turned my head around to look at him. His nose was touching mine and his lips were less than an inch away from mine. His grey eyes stared at me warmly. He chuckled again at my lack of response. He moved his hand off mine and placed it on my waist.
The popcorn was done and I unwillingly broke away from his stare and pulled the popcorn out of the microwave. I didn’t bother getting a bowl, so I made my way back up to the room and he was following me closely. He shut the door and pulled me against him. He took the popcorn out of my hand and set it aside.

"Only 12 more days until we’re married." He noted. I smiled nervously. He pressed his lips against mine and put his hand on the small of my back and pressed my body against him. I wrapped my arms around his neck and pulled him down to me. My legs hit the edge of the bed and my back fell on the mattress.
So much for popcorn…
He ran his hands up my shirt and then over my head. I moved back so that my legs weren’t hanging over the edge and rested my head on the pillow. He moved up to me and pressed the switch on the lamp next to me. The room became obscured and I waited for my eyes to adjust. I felt the fabric of his shirt against my skin as his lips kissed my neck. My eyes finally adjusted and I desperately looked for the hem of his shirt. He beat me to the punch and his hands swiftly pulled his shirt over his head in one quick movement. My hands ran through the hair on his chest to his neck.
I thought about how I was getting married in twelve days. I was nervous, but the thing was, I didn’t know why. I turned my attention back to the present. He ran his hands down the length of my body. He smiled against my lips and I knotted my fingers in his hair. I parted my lips and he grinned.
He pressed his lips to my ear and I caught my breath.
"Do you want your popcorn?" He whispered. I nodded weakly, figuring this would end up leading somewhere…immoral. He kissed down my neck, slowly before he pushed himself off me. I propped myself up against a pillow as I watched his silhouette walk to where he left the bag of popcorn. He opened it as he made his way back to me and turned the light back on.
He pulled the covers over us both and I rested my upper body on his chest and sighed. He grabbed a handful and the pieces fell into his mouth. I watched him, in a wanting way. He looked back at me and took out a piece of popcorn with one hand, and placed his index finger of his other hand, to my lips.
I gave him a perplexed look and he placed his fingertip on the top of my bottom teeth. He looked at me expectantly. I parted my lips and slightly opened my mouth. He grinned and placed the piece of popped kernel in my mouth.
He grinned at then kissed me again.
"Silly, silly, girl." He chuckled. I rolled my eyes and kissed him again.

Chapter 75
* Just Hold Down My Head And Take The Loss. You’d Think That I’d Learn My Lesson By Now. You’d Think That I’d Somehow Figure Out That If You Strike That Match You’re Bound To Feel The Flame.*
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When I woke up the next morning, I had my legs somewhat entwined with his and my face pressed against his chest. I felt him trace his finger lightly up and down my arm. I pulled my head back and rested it on a pillow.
"Good morning." He smiled. I tried to mumble a response but I just nodded. He chuckled and kissed my neck. "Did you sleep good?" He pulled away. I nodded again and pulled the blanket back over my head. He pulled his legs away from mine and started getting up. I hugged him.
"Don’t go." I smiled, half asleep.
"I’ll be right back." He promised. I sighed and let him go. He came back after a few minutes and pulled me back against him. I snuggled up to him and he pressed his lips to the back of my neck. "What do you want to do today?" He murmured. I shrugged and yawned.
"I’m sure you’ll think of something." I assured him. He nodded thoughtfully.
"We could go out later." He suggested.
"That’s fine." I yawned again "Where?"
"I don’t go. We could go to a nice, fancy restaurant. If you want." He advocated. I nodded and then got up to get dressed. I searched the floor for the tank top that he tore off me last night. "Where’s my top?" I mumbled. He clicked his tongue off the roof of his mouth. I turned around and he had it hanging off his finger. "Can I have it back please? I’m washing some of my clothes today." I informed him. He shook his head slowly back and forth.
"You have to come and get it." He said it in a sign song tone and grinned. I jumped on the bed and my hand reached for it but he swung it just out of reach.
"That’s not fair!" I avowed. He laughed.
"If you really want it…" He trailed off. I narrowed my eyes and reached for it again. He pulled his arm away again.
I sighed, figuring the only way to get it back would be to give him what he wanted. He grinned again at my thoughtful expression. I bent down and kissed him. He somewhat nodded and dropped the top to the ground and wrapped his arms around my neck and pulled me down on him. I pushed the blanket off him so it wouldn’t be in my way.
He sat up and then pushed my back on the mattress and straddled his weight over me. His hands ran over my bare torso and then pressed against my hips. The more physical part of me was taking up most of my mind than the mental portion, because my hands went to his hips and pulled on his shorts, leaving him in his briefs. He paused in surprise and looked at me.
I smiled meekly and he grinned and went back to kissing my neck. He broke away and took my shorts off and threw them to the side.
Why am I doing this?….
I kissed his neck and he ran his hand down my bare legs. He pushed my head to the side and kissed down the line of my jaw. His lips moved to mine and he licked my bottom lip. I eagerly parted my lips and his tongue moved over mine. My hands knotted themselves in his messed hair.
He roughly pressed his entire body against mine. It was somewhat overwhelming. He smiled against my mouth as I wrapped my arms around his neck in an attempt to pull him closer to me.
He skimmed his nose up my neck and then kissed beneath my ear. I caught my breath and tried to compose myself. My skin felt hot as his hands roamed my body. I desperately searched for his lips and he laughed under his breath and gave me what I sought.
Sure enough, there was a knock on the door. He groaned in frustration.
"Alex, Patty won’t leave us alone. Can I put her in the room with you?" Clare sounded impatient as the dog barked at the closed door. Alex pulled away from me and I whined.
"I’m not decent mum!" He shouted through the door. I kissed his chest and he turned back to me. Patty barked again. He broke away from my mouth again and looked back at the door. "Hold on." He replied. I sighed and he threw my clothes back to me and I ran into the bathroom. He pulled his shorts back on and opened the door.
"Thank you." Clare relieved the dog to him. He muttered something and then shut the door. I came back out grabbed some clothes for the day. I put them on, and Patty jumped into my arms. He looked at me in disappointment and I gave him a quick kiss and headed downstairs.
Later, we were walking out the door to dinner. He wrapped his arm around my waist as he walked us across the street to the car.
"So where are we going?" I asked him once he turned the car on. He shook his head back and forth.
"No, no, no. You’re going to have to wait." He clicked. I sighed and watched him drive. We got to the restaurant and it was very rococo looking from the outside. I looked back at him and he grinned. He got out of the car and opened my door and helped me up. He wrapped his arm around my waist again and we walked up to the small podium in the front of the brasserie. Alex gave the man there his last name. I looked up at him.
Reservations? When did he have time for that?
I followed him to our table and sat down. The waiter handed us our menus, and I looked through the entrees. They were all in Italian. I read the descriptions though since they were in English. I got a shrimp pasta dish. Alex got something similar. I took a sip out of the ice cold water and he looked at me.
"You look beautiful." He breathed. I blushed furiously and looked back down. He chuckled and leaned over the small table and kissed me. I kissed him back and kept it at that. "Do you want some wine to drink or anything?" He looked through the drinks menu. I shook my head and laughed.
"After this morning? I think not." I explained. He frowned and then took a drink of water.
Shortly after, the waiter brought us our plates of food and it smelled good. I grabbed a fork and twirled some pasta on it and placed it in my mouth. It tasted good too.
"You want dessert?" Alex put his fork on his now empty plate. I judged how full I was and nodded slowly. He grinned and ordered us some chocolate tie mousse cake. The waiter took our plates and then Alex’s order for a dessert. I sighed and leaned back in my chair.
"When did you make reservations?" I demanded jokingly.
"Oh, a few days ago." He grinned. "I was going to take you here whether you wanted to or not." He laughed. I rolled my eyes.
The cake came and it was definitely something that Alex would order. Covered in chocolate. I laughed. He put some cake on the fork and held it up to my lips. I smiled coyly and he placed the mousse covered fork in my mouth. He pulled the fork back and grinned.
"Good, no?" He took a bite. I nodded and licked my lips.
"Yep. Pretty good." I summed.
We got out of his car and the street lamps were on. It was ten o clock. He had his arm around my shoulder and we walked on the sidewalk, passing his parents’ house.
"Are you excited about the wedding?" He asked nonchalantly. I nodded. Truthfully? I was nervous as hell. I’m sure there was some excitement buried somewhere, but, at the moment, I had no idea where.
"Yeah." I swallowed. He mused something and smiled at me. I looked at him warily. He pulled me in front of him and placed my hands around his neck. His hands drifted to my waist.
"You can’t tell me that your nervous?" He smiled. I looked down at his feet.
"Maybe…" I trailed off.
"Well then." He grinned. I shook my head.
"I don’t know why. So don’t ask." I warned. He nodded again and bent his head down and kissed me. I licked my lips when he pulled away. I could still taste the chocolate. "Oh well, I still have eleven days to calm down right?"
Right?

Chapter 76
* You’d Think That I’d Learn The Cost Of Love. Paid That Price Long Enough. But Still I Drive Myself Right Through The Pain.*
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Ten days. Ten days till I got married.
Holy s***! Too short, too short!
I panicked when I woke up the next morning. Ok, ten days was plenty of time to calm down. I mean that was like a week and a half right? But was it enough? I didn’t know why I was so nervous though! I should be excited. I mean, I loved him. I wanted to be with him. So what was I freaking out about?
"Stop freaking out." He murmured into my neck.
"How do you know that I’m freaking out?! I haven’t said anything!"
"I know you." He answered plainly. I sighed roughly. "But, I’d be happy to soothe your frayed nerves." He laughed as he kissed the back of my neck. I rolled my eyes.
"Well, thanks but no thanks." I laughed. He ignored me though and continued kissing me. "I just wish I knew why I was freaking out!" I exasperated. He shrugged.
"Don’t worry about it." He told me. How could I?
"I guess." I replied in defeat. He unwrapped his arms from around me and I stood up and got dressed. " I had fun last night." I commented as I pulled my shirt over my head. He grinned.
"I did too." He mused. "But I did enjoy yesterday morning." He winked.
"Of course you did." I drawled. He flashed a crooked smile and then pulled the covers over his head.
"Ten days." He sung from under the blanket. I groaned.
"Don’t say that." I fell back on the bed. He laughed and then pulled the blanket back over. I crawled to his open embrace and buried my head in his chest.
"It’s going to be fine." He kissed the top of my head. "I promise."
Later, I was sitting in Alex’s lap, watching TV in the living room. We were bored, at the most. I flipped through the channels. He had his chin on my shoulder, saying ’no’ to every channel I passed through.
" I give up." I surrendered and handed him the remote. He let out a sigh and turned the TV off.
"Me too." He joined. Richard walked in.
"Bored?" He stated, more than asked. We nodded in unison.
"Why don’t you take Patty for a walk?" He suggested. I looked at Alex, and he nodded his head. I jumped out of his lap and he grabbed a leash. I picked Patty up and he placed the collar and leash contraption over her head.
We walked out the door and I set her on the pavement. She ran down the steps from the doorway and barked at us. I laughed and he rolled his eyes and wrapped his arm around my waist.
"Well, this is nice." He joked as Patty sniffed the cement. I rolled my eyes.
"Yep." I sighed and rested my head on his shoulder. I laughed introspectively.
"What?"
"Nothing. It’s just." I paused. "I never thought that I would end up getting married to you." I breathed. He chuckled.
"You say it like it’s a bad thing." He joked.
"No, no. I mean, well, in high school. You were a senior, I was a freshman and we both really liked each other and then we never saw each other again." I thought. "Then one day, you show up at my door." I chuckled.
"And I never thought I would be wrapped around your finger so easily." He bent down to kiss me.
"You aren’t wrapped around my finger." I argued, but I knew he kind of was.
"Uh, yeah, I am." He looked at me with his eyebrows raised in disbelief. "But I don’t mind." He subsided.
He was quiet for a while. Thinking, I presumed. I left him to his thoughts and watched Patty enjoy the outdoors.
"Oh darn." I cursed sarcastically. He looked down at me. "We missed Abby and Eric’s wedding!"
"Oh, I was so looking forward to it too!" He laughed.
I looked at him as he kept his eyes ahead. Suddenly, I wasn’t nervous about getting married to him anymore. He was my everything. My life. He was my friend, and my soon to be husband. I couldn’t think of anyone else I would rather be with than him. He made me laugh, he understood me. He was my support, he was there for me.
He was my…forever.
I didn’t know why it took me so long to realize it. I was somewhat ashamed of myself.
"Something wrong?" He broke through my thoughts. I smiled up at him.
"No. Everything’s perfect."

Chapter 77
*Well It Turns Out, I Haven’t Learned A Thing. You’d Think That I’d Learn My Lesson By Now. That If You Strike That Match, You’re Bound To Feel The Flame.*
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Nine. Days.
It was stuck in my head. No matter what I was doing. Ticking away day after day. Of course, I wasn’t nervous anymore; but it still bugged me.
I guess I just never saw myself being the type to get married before 25. I sighed. There wasn’t much I could do anyway. Once the ball starts rolling, there’s not much you can do to stop it.
Alex had his arm wrapped around my waist and his lips pressed against my neck. He was asleep though. So basically, I was trapped. I let out a sigh and tried to adjust my back to a more comfortable position. He gripped him arm around me and I took a sharp breath of air and winced.
I heard Clare walk down the stairs. I had a small flint of hope. She walked into the kitchen and took a double look at me, trapped under him on the couch. She smiled at me, trying not to laugh.
"Help me." I mouthed. She nodded, quietly laughing. I smiled up at her hopefully. I didn’t want to wake him up, but I didn’t want to suffocate either. She walked over and gently nudged his shoulder.
He completely ignored it. I sighed in frustration. I managed to pull my arm out away from my side and pushed his shoulder. He still didn’t react. Clare frowned. I beat on his back repetitively.
"What?" He mumbled into my neck.
"You’re suffocating me." I choked. He pulled his arm out from around me.
"Sorry." He slurred and rested his head on my chest and closed his eyes again. Clare shook her head in disappointment and walked back towards the kitchen.
"Lazy bum." She muttered. He grinned and waited for her footsteps faded away. I let out a sigh and let my head fall on the arm of the couch. He lifted his head off my chest and kissed me full on the lips, slowly making his way to my neck.
"What are you doing?" I laughed.
"What’s it look like I’m doing?" He susurrated as his hands ran down my side. He titillate my side and I stifled a giggle. "Are you ticklish?" He smiled down at me. I shook my head rapidly back and forth. He raised his eyebrow at me.
"No." I blurted. He prodded my side with his finger and I bit my lip. He grinned and tickled my sides, clearly enjoying himself. I laughed involuntarily and tried to grab his hands. "Knock it off." I tried to say seriously in between my laughing fits. He laughed at my struggling. My sides were sore from laughing so much. He bent down to kiss me and I tried to compose myself.
His hands slowly drifted to my side and I smacked him on the arm. He chuckled and moved his hands to my neck. He roughly pressed my back into the couch. I didn’t really want to make out with him with his mother in the other room. But, once his mind was set….
He groaned and pulled on my lip. I rolled my eyes and pushed on his shoulder; trying to get him off. He pulled away and looked at me.
"What?" He wined.
"I won’t make out with you in front of your parents." I mimicked his accent from the day in the airport. He sighed and kissed me softly.
"Technically," he murmured, "we’re not in front of my parents." He chuckled. I shook my head in fake disappointment as he continued kissing me. Clare walked back out of the kitchen and shook her head, laughing. I blushed and he put his palm where my cheek was turning a dark shade of red. He laughed as soon as he pulled away.
"Shut up." I muttered, smacking him in the arm. He grinned and kissed me again.
"Sorry."
A few days passed by. I tried not to notice it though. Alex was getting over excited about it though. It was a bit unnerving. I only had two days before we left for Aruba. We were going to take a couple days there to get everything situated. Anna said she would be there the day before. Same with Jake, and Alex’s parents. So we would have a day all to ourselves.
That’s going to be interesting…
"Alex, we still have two days. Why are you packing?" I groaned. He looked back at me, meeting my desperate gaze. He guffawed.
"Well, I want to be prepared." He noted.
"Ok, then why are you packing my bag?" I arched my eyebrows at him. He smiled at me crookedly.
"Well, we all know that you’re dreading it to much, to even think about packing." He shook his head at my fault. He was right. "And plus, I’m doing you a favor." He added sarcastically. I rolled my eyes.
"Right. Of course." I agreed dismissively. He sighed and pulled me off the bed and into his arms. "I really do want to marry you, you know." I made it clear. He nodded his head.
"I know." He kissed the top of my head. "I just wish I knew why you were so nervous." He sighed. I shrugged.
"I don’t know. PAlexably because I’m afraid that I’m going to trip when I’m walking down the aisle." I joked. He twirled a strand of my hair around his finger.
"I’m pretty sure you won’t." He laughed. I shook my head and looked up at him.
"If you say so."

Chapter 78
*You’d Think That I’d Learn The Cost Of Love. Paid That Price Long Enough, But Still I Drive Myself Right Through The Pain. It Turns Out I Haven’t Learned A Thing.*
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" I think the thing I’m looking forward to the most, is the cake." He nodded thoughtfully. We were out in the backyard, lying on the grass. I lifted my head off his chest and looked at him with sarcastic shock. "And marrying you." He snickered and kissed my nose.
"Right." I rolled my eyes and rested my head back on his chest. "I bet you can’t wait to rip open the presents either." I joked.
"Oh, I forgot about the presents." He laughed. "But yes, those too." He added. "And…" He ran his finger up my back. "most importantly…you." He grinned down at me and gave me a come-hither look.
"You’re such a guy." I played and smacked his shoulder lightly. He raised his hands back in defense.
"I’ve been good." He complied, proud of himself. I guffawed. "I have!" He defended. I shook my head and rolled over on my side so that my back was facing him. "What?" He laughed.
"Nothing." I folded my arms in front of me, smiling. He sat up and looked at me. I glanced at him from the corner of my eye. "What?" I queried. He smirked. "Alex, you have that look."
"What look?" He frowned.
"That ’I’m going to annoy you endlessly’ look."
"There’s a look for that?" He flashed a smile. I nodded, closing my eyes.
"You have a look for everything." I sighed, sarcasm dripping off my every word. He stood up and his shadow cast over me, making it slightly darker. I rolled back over on my back and held my arms up for him to pull me up. He sighed and grabbed my outstretched hands.

I smirked and pulled him back down to the ground. The air escaped through my lips as he fell on top of me. I laughed at his shocked expression. He simpered back at me and my arms encircled his waist.
He looked at me and smiled, I returned the favor and then moved my gaze to the sky. It was a deep blue color with flecks of silver in them. It was reasonably dark outside, but I liked the dark. His lips brushed against ear and I stifled a giggle, but stayed focused on the microscopic stars. I moved my arms to his neck.
I flinched at the cold drop of rain that fell on my lips. He pulled away from my neck and kissed it off eagerly. Another drop of water fell. And, another. He fervently kissed each and every single drop as they came.
The light from the house came on.
"Alex, we’re going to bed." I heard Clare shout. I couldn’t understand why she didn’t care that Alex was trying to freaking ’ravish’ me in front of them. He rolled off me and gave her a thumbs up.

"Night mum." He shouted back in reply. I rolled on my side and rested my arm across his chest. He twisted the ring on my finger, sighing. "Do you ever take this thing off?" He laughed quietly.
"Nope." I buried my head in his side to avoid the rain. "I like my ring. I don’t know why you find that so hard to believe." I breathed, sitting up. He followed suit and smiled.

"Well, if you like it then." He yawned.
"You want to go inside?" I looked at him, smiling. He nodded, and I stood up, dragging him along with me. He snaked his arm around my waist as we walked to the door. The rain was falling harder than before. "Could you walk any slower?" I said sarcastically as I got drenched. He grinned at my displeasure.
"I can actually." He slowed his walking pace down. I growled at how wet I was getting. He chuckled as I drug him to the door.
I slowly made my way to the bed. He watched me. I yawned and was to lazy to walk to the other side of the bed, so I lifted the covers and laid down next to Alex on his side of the bed. He laughed and made more room for me.
"Thanks." I yawned.
"Mmhm." He hummed. "Not long until we get to Aruba." He kissed my neck. I turned around to kiss him back.
"Can’t wait." I tried to sound enthused.
"I know you can’t wait." He joked. "And you won’t be able to sleep tomorrow night because you’ll be so excited."
"Or because I’ll be having a panic attack. You’re marrying a crazy person Alex. A crazy person." I emphasized. He chortled.
"You’re not crazy." He argued. I looked up at him.
"I am though." I closed my eyes.
"I’ll keep that in mind." He yawned this time. "Good night…crazy." He mocked. I shoved him away from me and he laughed.
"Good night." I replied as he pulled me against him again.

Chapter 79
*I Haven’t Learned A Thing. Haven’t Learned, Haven’t Learned. I Haven’t Learned A Thing…*
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I woke up in the morning and immediately tried to go back to sleep. I felt cozy, being practically on the edge of the mattress and having him keep me from falling off. I didn’t know if he was awake or not, so I tentatively unraveled his arm from around me. He didn’t seem to notice, so I made my way to the bathroom to take a shower.
The whole nerve racking started again as everything set in. I took a deep breath. Telling myself that it would be ok. Right? I mean, nothing bad would happen. He promised, and I trusted him. I had to.
I wasn’t really taking a shower, I guess I just needed to escape so Alex wouldn’t patronize me about my nerved expression that would be plastered on my face. I shook my head at how risible I was being.
I laughed at the idea of having to be dragged down the aisle.
He knocked on the door.
"Are you getting out anytime soon?" He catechized. I exhaled again.
"Yeah, hold on." I placated. I turned the water off and grabbed a towel and wrapped it around me. I opened the door and he was leaning against the frame casually. He smirked at me and I pushed past him to my clothes. I managed to quickly get dressed before he came out of the bathroom. He walked out and frowned at me. I smiled at him triumphantly though.
"Good morning." He grinned mischievously. I eyed him charily. "Last day here." He crooned. I shot him a distraught look and went to go downstairs. He laughed an apology and grabbed my waist before I made my escape to the kitchen.
"Let me go. If you’re going to mock me, I’m not going to speak to you." I stated in faux anger.
"I’m not mocking you." He kissed my head. "And plus, you’ll still have two days to freak out once we get there." He supported. I groaned.
"Wow, thanks. That really makes me feel better." I droned sarcastically.
"That’s what I do."
I was sitting down on the couch watching TV. Alex walked out of the kitchen with his index finger held up.
"One more day." He mouthed. I scowled at him and refused to let him sit next to me. He sighed and sat down on the chair instead. I ignored him and his false glares. "Come here." He motioned to himself. I shook my head insolently. He frowned at my lack of fervor towards him. "Why not?" He inquired.
"You just want to torture me. So no, I won’t sit with you." I stated obdurately.
"I’m not going to torment you. Now come here." He added with more force. I let out an incensed sigh and slowly made my way to his open lap. "There." He said with content layering his voice. I looked at the wall in front of me in vexation. "Now, can you please tell me why, exactly, you don’t want to marry me?"
"I never said that!" I said, in shock at his words. "What? Why? No! I never…What?!" I couldn’t seem to find the right words and put them in the correct order. He gave me a concerned look.
"I was joking. Calm down." He palliated. I nodded. "But seriously. What are you freaking out about?" He asked with inquisitiveness. I shook my head, not knowing that answer myself.
"I don’t know!" I threw my hands up in the air in frustration, trying to grab an answer from the air. I huffed the air from my lungs and fell against him.
"I told you that it was going to be fine. Don’t you trust me?" He asked in disparity of trying to calm me down. I nodded my head.
"Yes, of course I do. I just, I don’t know." I gave up on trying to think of an excuse. "I need help." I said in defeat. He laughed.
"So you’re nervous? You don’t need to be sent to the asylum." He chuckled. I gave him an apathetic look and he stopped laughing. "Look, please, just don’t worry about it." He begged. I gave in, well at least that’s what he thought. I was still going to be freaking out when he wasn’t looking of course…
As promised, I was lying awake that night. Watching the minutes on the clock pass by slowly. We went to bed early so we could get to the airport. Which of course, gave me more time to panic. I peeked a glance at him and he looked sound asleep, so I slowly got out of the bed. I didn’t feel like going anywhere like downstairs. So, I sat down at the end of the bed with my knees pressed against my chest.
"If you’re going to not sleep, can you at least not sleep next to me?" His voice was eliding.
"I’m quite happy on the floor, thank you." I negated. He let out a sigh and sat up. I glanced up at him and he leaned over the edge of the bed. "Go back to sleep." I recommended. He shook his head at me as I shivered. "Fine." I grumbled and got back under the covers.
"Thanks." He said, half asleep.

Chapter 80 *When The Night Won’t Fall, And The Sun Won’t Rise. And You See The Best, As You Close Your Eyes.* ''''''''''''''''''''' I sat on the end of the bed, trying to breathe. He came out of the bathroom and rolled his eyes at me as he sat down. "I’m sorry." I apologized. He laughed. "It’s ok." He sighed. "Ready to go?" He pulled me off the bed and pushed me to the door before I got an answer out of my mouth. "Apparently." I sarcastically commented. He quickly wrote a note to his parents and left it on the counter. Grabbing my hand, he pulled me out the door and quietly shut it and led me to the car. "Wait, I didn’t say goodbye to Patty!" I exclaimed. "I’m sure she’ll get over it." He placated. We sat down in the plane and I looked out the small window desperately. It was pitiful, the way I was acting. I felt horrible, letting Alex see my distress, thinking he may get the wrong impression. The flight attendant was giving the lecture on what to do if the plane were to crash. I sighed and closed my eyes so I could fall asleep instead of fall to pieces. "Do you have to go?" I asked quietly from the bed, watching him as he got dressed. He nodded roughly. "But your plane doesn’t leave for a while." I added, trying to get him to stay. "I want to get to the airport early." He justified. I bit my lip. He pulled his jacket on and came over to kiss me. It was brief. Too brief. ‘Come here and kiss me and act like you miss me.’ "See you later." He didn’t really smile at me anymore. I waved goodbye to him as he slammed the door shut. I stared at the closed door; expecting him to come back to me. ‘Make me believe we’re together.’ He had gotten a job and he traveled a lot. I never saw him. He never held me like he used to. It just wasn’t the same, but I could never make myself say anything about it. ‘Come here and hold me and baby control me. Touch me like you’ll be here forever.’ It just wasn’t the same. I thought back to when he promised me all these things. Who would have thought that it was never going to come true. I told him that I wasn’t what he wanted. I wasn’t ever going to be that. The door opened again, I smiled hopefully. "Love you." He said in a monotone voice as he shut the door again. ‘Tell me you love me, it’ll hurt a lot when you go.’ I didn’t have a chance to respond before he shut the door again. I heard the car rip out of the driveway. ‘It’ll hurt a lot worse when you go.’ I cried quietly to myself. I missed him, so much. One day he was my life, my everything. Then next thing I knew, it was all gone. And I was afraid I was never going to see it again. My dreams shifted. "How the hell could you do this to me?!" I screamed at him. He struggled for the words. "I’m sorry Seirnali , I didn’t know what I was thinking." He looked down from my torn expression. "But with Abby!?" I cried, pointing to the bedroom. "I f*ing trusted you!" I accused. "What the f*** did I do to deserve this!?" I paused, waiting. "Well?! Tell me!" I demanded. "I’m sorry!" He pleaded and grabbed my hand. "Don’t! Don’t touch me!" I hit him and pushed him away from me. "Please, don’t leave." He begged. "Shut the hell up Alex. Why don’t you just go and f*** Abby, you obviously could care less about me!" I shouted, my face getting wet. I went to the door. "Please…" He faltered, grabbing my arm again. "Just please, don’t leave. I’ll do, anything. Just don’t go." His eyes watered. I glared at him through the tears as I pulled my wedding ring off my finger. "Here, take this and give it to her. I don’t f*ing want it anymore." I threw it on the ground in front of him. He picked it up and held onto it desperately. "Please." He repeated, a tear rolling down his cheek and splashing onto the floor. " I love you more than anything. I swear, I’ll do whatever it takes. Just please, I can’t live without you." He fell on his knees in front of me. "I trusted you! How could you do this to me Alex?! I gave you everything I f*ing had!" I started screaming at him again, my tears falling down by the dozen. "You promised! You promised that you would never hurt me, ever!" I whispered. "I’m sorry." He breathed. I had my hand on the door handle, my eyelashes were blurring everything since they were catching the drops of pain that fell from my eyes. "No, I can’t. I can’t forgive you for this. Ever." I shook my head and opened the door. "I, I loved you." I bit my lip so that I could stop the crying as I slammed the door shut. My dreaming switched a frame of thought. "Happy tenth anniversary." He spoke as he handed me a glass of wine. I smiled up at him brightly. "Likewise." I hummed as I kissed him. We were sitting outside; it was dark. There was a full moon which served as a spotlight on the blanket that was laying on the grass. I was happy. Without a care in the world. "I can’t believe you’ve put up with me this long." He cogitated, laughing. I shook my head. "Give yourself some credit." I sighed, setting the glass on the ground. "You’re fun to be around." I contemplated my response as soon as I said it. "Thanks." He said rolling his eyes. Even after ten years he acted the same. He hadn’t changed a bit. I wondered if I had changed any.For better or worse anyway.My eyes traced the silver lights in the sky, creating a pattern. We still lived in the same house. Same yard. Same stars. Same…everything. " I love you." I grinned, looking at him. He smiled at me softly and leaned towards me and kissed me. "I love you too." He pulled away. I woke up and it all made sense. I knew why I was scared. I was afraid of what could happen.

Chapter 81
*When You Reach The Top, As You Bottom Out. But You Understand What It’s All About.*
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I heard water lap up against the wall outside. I smelled the tropics.
"Wake up." He sung softly. I opened my eyes at the sound of his voice. I was so confused. Everything that passed through my head was so real. I bit my lip and looked at the wall in front of me. I glanced down at the blankets; perfectly white and feathery.
"Hmm." That was all I could think of. I tried to shake out the dreams so that I wouldn’t convey it to reality. I turned myself around so I could look at him. He was just wearing his shorts.
"Hey." He smiled, talking quietly. I observed his prudent behavior. I hoped that I hadn’t talked in my sleep. I tried to remember how I even got here. I vaguely evoked going through the airport when we landed. "You look confused." He laughed lightly. I shook off the mien I was wearing.
"When did we get here?" I queried, taking a deep breath.
"A while ago. You fell asleep when we got here, in Aruba." He added.
"Oh." I consented.
"Something wrong?" He whispered, looking at me. I shook my head and sat up. It was a bright room with a window looking out over the crystal clear sea. The window was half open, letting in a cool breeze. "Are you sure?" He repeated.
"Yeah, I’m fine." I consoled. Something in my head clicked. "Happy birthday." I said to him, lacking the zeal in my voice.
"Thank you." He pulled me on his lap and kissed my neck. I had to get the dream to stop bothering me. " You like it?" He gestured to the window. I nodded.
"Love it." I agreed.
"Good. Now," He bent over the edge of the bed. "go put this on. We’re going swimming." He dropped a black swim suit in my lap, grinning. I picked up the racy bikini.
"This isn’t mine." I complained.
"That’s not the point. Go put it on." He urged.
"I’m not wearing this." I tossed it at him. He pulled it off his head and frowned. He pulled out a puppy dog face. "No." I pressed.
"Please? It’s my birthday." He whined. I ignored his pleas.
"Fine." I gave up and ripped it out of his hands. I made my way to the bathroom and frustratingly put the suit on. I took a towel and wrapped it around my chest and walked back out to the bedroom. "You can’t swim with the towel on." He lowered.
"How do you know? Maybe I can?" I sat down.
"Come on." He pulled on my hand and pulled me out the door. The sun was incredibly bright. The sand was the color of cream, equally soft on my feet. There was a dock that led out to the water. My eyes widened as he pulled me towards it.
"What are you doing?" I asked, my voice shaking. He laughed.
"Trust me." He breathed. My mind instantaneously went to my dream. I pushed it away. He stopped at the end of the dock. I looked over the edge. The water was so clear; I could see the prismatic fish glittering in the sun. He tugged my towel off and it dropped to the ground. I flushed. "You look fine." He assured.
" Yeah, yeah, yeah." I unarticulated. He picked me up with one arm behind my back and one in the bend at my knees. I wrapped my arms around his neck. "What are you doing?!" I asked frantically.
"You’ll see." He assured. My eyes widened as he backed up to edge behind us. It all sunk in but I couldn’t stop him before he jumped off the dock into the water. I screamed as we were momentarily falling. He was smiling broadly and laughing at my fear and shock.
The water was warm when it hit me. We floated back to the top and I hit him as he laughed. I kept afloat and looked at the water around me, then back to him. His hair was flattened against his head and his eyes were sparkling with amusement.
He grinned and splashed me. I scowled and pushed his shoulders down into the water. His hand wrapped around my ankle and I screamed as he pulled me down to where he was. I pressed my palms against his chest for him to let me go. He let go of my foot and I resurfaced.
He wrapped his arms around my waist and pulled me towards him until my lips met his. His fingers ran through my drenched hair as his lips parted against mine. A fish brushed against my leg and I involuntarily screamed into his partially opened mouth. He let go of me instantly and shot me a frantic look. I covered my mouth and apologized to him.
"What?" He kept his expression on his face.
"Sorry…fish…" I trailed off. He rolled his eyes at my precariousness. I sighed and floated on my back.
"I don’t know about you." He shook his head. I smiled at him and swam back up to the dock and climbed the small ladder so I could sit down. "Where are you going?"
"Sitting down." I said coolly. He scowled.
"Why?" He bleated. I stopped halfway up the ladder and looked at him apathetically. "Please?" He stuck out his bottom lip.
"I need to stop being such a pushover." I let my head fall down in rout. He grinned at me in success as he wrapped his arms back around my waist and pulled be back into the tepid warm.
"I like you being a pushover." He kissed my neck. "I like it a lot." He said, chuffed. He pressed my back into the ladder and kissed my wet lips. My hands went to his shoulders and pulled him against me. His lips formed a grin as he let his hands roam my body, lingering around the strings to my top. His fingers slowly pulled on the strings. I rolled my eyes and grabbed his hand.
"I’m not that much of a pushover." I disciplined. He laughed and moved his hands to my waist as he kissed up and down my neck. I moaned as he pressed his mouth to the weak spot beneath my ear.
Although…

Chapter 82
*Nothing’s Ever What It Seems. In Your Life Or In Your Dreams. It Won’t Make Sense, What Can You Do?*
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…No.
"Fine. I can wait a few days." He grinned down at me. Realization dawned on me and I blushed furiously. He chuckled. "Don’t worry about it." He kissed me. I groaned against his mouth in angst and frustration. He pulled away and moved me so that he could climb up the ladder. "I’ll be right back." He leaned his head over the side once he was up and then bounded back to the seaside resort we were staying in. I sighed and watched the fish; from a safe distance anyway.
He jumped back in, covering me with water again. I waited for him to float back to the surface. He broke the surface and swam back over to me. He handed me some goggles and a snorkel. He pulled his goggles over his head and smiled at me encouragingly.
"Put it on." He urged. I nodded fervently and put on the goggles and he put the mouthpiece of his snorkel in his mouth, he motioned for me to do the same. He went under the water and I didn’t know what to do, so I just followed his actions.
The water was even more captivating when you could see it below the surface. Alex was ahead of me, chasing the fish. I rolled my eyes at his ingenuous behavior and caught up with him.
Later that same day, I was lying on a towel over the sand. I had a book in my hand. I hadn’t a clue where Alex had ran off to, but I let it go, knowing he could take care of himself. Hopefully, anyway.
A shadow blocked my reading light; I lowered my book and there was a man standing in front of me, casting the shadow. I grinned.
"Hey Jake." I greeted, putting the book down. He was just wearing a pair of shorts, showing is dark complexion and his fit physique. "When did you get here?" I put my hand over my eyes to keep the sun from my vision.
"Oh, a few hours ago. I know I wasn’t supposed to come until tomorrow but I got a cheaper ticket, so I figured…" He trailed off. "You look good." He grinned, looking me over.
"Likewise." I mused. "I don’t know where Alex ran off to, so I can help you there." I laid back down and picked the book back up. He nodded his head, looking around. He let out a sigh and sat down on the sand next to me.
"Hey Jake!" Alex’s voice broke the silence.
"Oh, hey." Jake replied.

"Move." Alex demanded as he wedged himself into the space between Jake and I. He offered me a piña colada. I shook my head and he frowned. "Why not?"
"You’re not getting me drunk Alex." I elucidated clearly from behind my book. He let out a sigh of defeat and disappointment.
"I’ll take it." Jake said happily as he took it out of Alex’s hand. Alex frowned and took a drink.
"What are you doing here?" Alex questioned
"Got a cheaper flight." He swallowed. "I figured I would get a head start on picking up all the girls here." He sneered, looking at me. I rolled my eyes at him.
"Yeah, no staring at my fiancée." Alex smacked the back of his head. I laughed. "Go chase after her." He gestured to a woman walking down the beach. I watched Jake jump up and run after her. Alex sighed. "Now that’s just pathetic." He shook his head. I laughed again.
"That’s Jake for you." I shut my book and put it in the sand and closed my eyes. He grabbed me and pulled me on top of him. I rested my head on his chest as the sun warmed my back. He ran his hand over my still wet hair as he watched Jake attempt to flirt with the woman he chased down. "What’s he doing now?" I muffled into his chest.
"I’m not sure, but he appears to be stalking her." He said, feigning a concerned tone. I laughed. "Wait, she’s talking to him. He’s talking back…and she’s walking away." He completed. "Well, he tried his best." He sighed. "Oh, look, he’s found another person to torment."
"Now that’s pathetic." I complied, laughing. He nodded his head in agreement. "Oh well." I yawned and rolled off him, back onto the balmy towel. I propped my head up to see an unsuccessful Jake make his way back to us. He sat down next to Alex. "Don’t worry Jake, I’m sure you’ll bang someone before you leave." I assured jokingly.
"Thanks. You free tonight?" He sniggered, irritating Alex. Alex narrowed his eyes towards him and scowled. He backhanded the back of his head. "I was kidding. Jeez! Calm down." Jake defended. I rolled my eyes at the tension. "Anyway…" He attempted to change the subject.
"I’m going to go in. I’m getting hot." I stood up and shook the sand off my towel. Alex stood up immediately and glared at Jake. He rolled his eyes at him. "See you later Jake." I waved while walking back to the room that was placed so conveniently by the beach.
"Bye." He shouted as I got farther away from him. I opened to door to the small house and went to my clothes.
"Do you have to get dressed?" He asked sweetly. I looked at him with my hand placed on my hip. "We could pass the time…" He suggested. I shook my head at him.
"No." I rolled my eyes. His expression fell. "You said you could wait a couple days so you’ll be fine."
"But it’s my birthday." He protested.
"That’s been established." I said, walking into the bathroom. I shut and locked the door and he leaned against it from the outside. "Besides, I gave you your birthday present. I wore this swim suit. So there, happy birthday." I pulled a tube top on. Might not have been a good idea with him in the same room, but I would have to take my chances.
"Could you do one more little thing for my birthday besides that?" He pleaded from the other side of the door. I let out a rough sigh and opened the door to find him grinning.
"What would that be?"

Chapter 83
*So I Won’t Try Making Sense Of You. Love Just Is. Whatever It May Be. Love Just Is. You And Me.*
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"I can’t believe the things I do for you." I ridiculed as I crawled under the covers. He shrugged. His other birthday present was me wearing lingerie to bed. I sighed to myself. I had to stop this pushover stuff. It was getting out of hand.
"Thank you." He grinned, running his hand over my lace covered body.
"Yeah, well Happy Birthday." I yawned and reached over to turn the light off on the nightstand. "And I swear, if you even try to take this off, I will make you go sleep out on the beach." I closed my eyes.
"I’ll be good." He promised, kissing the nape of my neck.
"Right." I rolled my eyes.
"I will." He bickered my point.
"I’m sure you will Alex." I added, supporting him.
"Are you saying I can’t control myself?" He propped himself up with his arm, looking down at me. I felt his grey eyes on my body.
"No." I said nonchalantly. "You’re just a very…" I searched for the right word. "sensual person." I nodded. He scoffed. "Not that that’s a bad thing." I comforted and turned around to face him. He let his arm fall so he was looking at me.
"Really?" He grinned now. I rolled my eyes at his mood changes.
"Yes, now I’m going to bed so that I may wake up in the morning and get out of this…piece of string…" I blanched. He fought back a smile and pulled me against him.

"I think you look nice." He added before he kissed me. I went to pull back but he was apparently having other ideas. He seized my face with his hands; refusing to let me pull away. I rolled my eyes as he rolled over on top of me.
I gave in and wrapped my arms around his neck to pull him closer to me.
Stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid! Am I insane?!
I pushed away my thoughts, not having the time to listen to them at the moment. His body rested against mine and I gladly accepted it. I felt his hot breath on my skin as he caught his breath. I kissed his neck, not particularly controlling my actions anymore.
Spell it out, come on. S - t - u - p - i - d.
He pressed his perfect lips back against mine and I reveled it. His shirt was already off which saved me the torment of not being able to run my hands up his body. He grinned at my enthusiasm.
His fingers slowly made their way up my so called ’top’ that I was wearing. He just couldn’t help himself could he? I would have said something, but he had his lips over mine, letting his tongue act on it’s own accord. I would have done something but he had my hands pinned up above my hands. Of course…
Why don’t I listen to me?
I wasn’t worrying, I knew he wouldn’t do anything of course; so I kissed him back. I compulsorily shivered as his fingertips brushed against the territory beneath my collarbone. He pulled back quickly and pulled away.
"Sorry." He apologized softly, in my ear. I shook my head to dismiss the subject. He chuckled and released his grip on my wrists. They moved to his neck, pulling him back to me. He gladly kissed me back. I asked him to part his lips and he pulled back. I looked at him with disappointment and offense. "Are you trying to drive me insane?" He bit his lip, something I rarely saw.
"Is it working?" I smiled deviously.
"Yes." He groaned at his weak willpower.

"Then I am." I agreed, enjoying myself.
"You’re cruel, you know that right?" He looked at me jokingly.
"I know, and I’m sorry." I feigned an apology and pressed him back up against me. I tilted my head so he could kiss down my neck.
Of course, lead him on. What a wonderful fiancée I am!
My stupid conscious had a point. It was cruel almost to lead him on like this. I let out a sigh, deciding to put a stop to my fun.
"Alex, we should get to bed." I pulled out an excuse. Like he would but it. He pulled away from my neck with an odd expression on his face. It looked like a mixture between disappointment and suspicion. I ignored it and gently pushed him off me. He sighed and his back fell down on the mattress. I pulled the fluffy blanket up around me in an attempt to stay warm.
He pulled me against his warm body and I welcomed the heat. I watched the clock change its numbers to midnight. One minute past to be exact. Technically speaking, I would be getting tomorrow.
Great…
"We’re getting married tomorrow." He heartened, reading my mind. I nodded. "You’re supposed to be happy and jumping up and down with elation." He commented.
"Whee." I cheered sarcastically.
"Ok, what’s wrong?" His tone became excruciatingly serious. I froze as soon as his words left his mouth.
"No… nothing." I stuttered.
"Don’t lie to me. You act like you don’t want to marry me or something. Do you?" There was not a single trace of humor in his voice.
"Of course I do." I defended.
"Then what’s wrong?!" He demanded, I could hear his frustration. I was quiet for a minute.
"I’m scared." I whispered, my voice breaking at the end. His body relaxed.
"About what?" He inquired. I composed myself and rolled over to look at him.
"I… I’m scared about what could happen." I bit my lip, and he knitted his brows together in puzzlement. " I keep thinking that you’ll find something better. A job, someone else. I’m so consumed with making you happy so that you won’t ever leave me, because I’m afraid of being alone again." I admitted. "So there, that’s what I’ve been freaking out about. And, I’m sorry that you got the wrong impression. But I do want to marry you, really, I can’t think of anything that would make me happier. I’m just, scared." I breathed.
"Oh." He mulled. "Why didn’t you just tell me that in the first place. It’s ok to be scared." He soothed and laughed. "I’m scared as hell."
"Then why were you prancing around like an idiot earlier?" I laughed.
"Well, I’m excited too." He grinned. "And I didn’t look like an idiot." He joked. I nodded. "That’s not the point ok? There’s nothing to be afraid of." He consoled. I nodded my head again. "Get some sleep ok?" He kissed my forehead and rested his head back on the pillow. "Nothing to worry about." He yawned before he fell asleep.
Nothing but everything.

Chapter 84
* Nothing Less, Nothing More. I Don’t Know What I Love You For. Love Just Is.*
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I woke up in the morning and kept my eyes close to block out the blinding sunlight penetrating the windows. I rolled over and rested my arm across his chest.
"Good morning." His voice sounded different. I opened my eyes to look at him; and then I screamed and fell out of the bed.
"You scared the s*** out of me Jake!" I accused, my heart beating a mile a minute. He laughed.
"I’m sorry." He offered me a hand to help me up. I put my hand in his rather large palm and he pulled me back up. "There, all better." He grinned. I shook my head and rolled my eyes at him. "You look nice." He winked at me. My cheeks burned and I pulled the perfectly white blanket over my body.
"What are you doing here?" I asked calmly as I laid back down.
"Alex went to go help his parents get situated and he told me to keep you company." He explained, smiling.
"Why? Is he afraid I’m going to catch a plane and run off on him?!" I exasperated sarcastically. He chuckled.
"No. You know how protective he gets." He sighed showing pity. I nodded in agreement. He pulled me next to him and put his arm around my shoulder. I didn’t care. He was like the brother that I never wanted, but loved nevertheless. "How are you?" He asked randomly.
"Good. You?"
"Just dandy. Still can’t pick up any girls though." He frowned.
"You’ll get there." I yawned, closing my eyes.
"I hope." He sounded irredeemable. I laughed at his tone. I heard the door open and opened my eyes to see Alex glaring at Jake.
"I said keep her company, not fondle her!" He rushed over to me and flipped Jake’s arm off my shoulder and pushed him off the bed. His facial expression as he fell to the floor made me laugh harder. "I said no touching." Alex repeated.
"You are so possessive." Jake grumbled and threw a pillow at Alex’s head. Alex’s expression let out another hysteria and I fell to the ground, clutching my sides. Alex shook his head in disappointment of my behavior.
"I’m sorry." I breathed as I shakily stood up. Jake stared at my body and I failed to notice it. Alex pulled the comforter off the bed and wrapped it around my body.
"You. Go. Now!" He shoved Jake out the door and slammed it shut. I giggled and fell back down on the bed. "Sorry about him." He said, flustered.
"It’s ok." I yawned and unraveled myself from the blanket. He grinned at my scenario of lying on the bed. "No." I warned. He ignored my caveat and crawled over me and kissed me. I laughed in between the kisses I received from him. "And you ignore me." I sighed. He laughed now.
"I try. But it’s easy to ignore you when you’re wearing this." He grabbed a fistful of the lace as he kissed down my shoulder. I laughed.
"Thanks, now get off me." I shoved him with my weak arms. He did so and I jumped up to get changed.
"You ok?" He said solemnly, referring to our prior conversation last night.
"Yeah." I lied, trying my best to hide it behind a guise of glee and excitement. He bought it.
"Ok." He let go of my hand and I made my way into the bathroom.
"I’m getting better at this lying crap." I muttered to myself once I shut the door.
A hour later, we were back out on the beach. I had my arms crossed watching Alex draw in the sand.
"What the hell is that supposed to be?" I gave up in confused frustration.
"I’m not done yet." He looked up at me from his spot on the sand. I plopped down into the white ground and continued to watch him. I sighed and laid down on my stomach. He was clearly amusing himself. I heard children squealing and I looked over my arm to see Katrina and James. I groaned. "What?" He looked up. "Oh." He answered his question himself.
"Yeah, oh." I agreed.
"Be civil." He played. I scoffed as I sat up. They ran up to me and tackled me. I screamed in protest and slight fear. He laughed, he was no help.
"Hey." I smiled at them. "Get off me now." I growled. They frowned and got off me. "Thank you." I sighed in relief. Anna caught up to them and I stood up to give her a quick hug. "Hi." I grinned at her.

"Hey, sweetie." She pecked me on the cheek. "How was England?" She released me from her embrace.
"Good. No, I had fun." I answered.
"I told you." She rolled her eyes at my previous worries.
"I know, I know." I nodded my head in rhythm with my words.
"How are you Alex?" She left me, standing there, while she made her way over to him. I played the words differently in my head.
"Do you take this man to be your husband?"
"I do , I do."
I shook my head, and tightly closed my eyes and then opened them again. I turned around and walked over to them. He pulled me down next to him and I rested my head on his shoulder. He kissed the top of my head and continued to draw in the white sand.
I do, I don’t.
I can, I can’t.
I will, I won’t.
He loves me now,
Will he love me later?

Chapter 85
* When You Ask To Stay, And Then Disappear, It Seems Your Gone, But You’re Really Here. When Every Move Seems Out Of Place, But Every Kiss Is Filled With Grace.*
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When I woke up the next morning, I was warm. Due to the sunlight beating down on my through the clear window. I rolled over to feel empty space. That was odd. I opened up my eyes, still unaware that I was getting married today. The fluffed up pillow had a blood red rose on it. Making the white look even brighter.
I was so confused.
I picked up the flower and there was a note lying underneath it. I picked it up.
‘Can’t wait to marry you.’
It was in Alex’s messy yet elegant scrawl. I laughed. Then I felt my heartbeat pounding in my ears. I blinked and fell back down on the pillow. There was no way in hell that I was getting out of this bed. I wondered where he was. We had a while till the wedding.
A few hours…
I groaned and placed the rose on the table next to me and pulled the covers back over my head. I heard the door open; I was reluctant to see who it was.

"Seirnali ! Get up! You’re getting married today!" Anna’s voice rang in my ears. I shook my head from underneath the covers. "Oh, look at that Clare. He got her a rose." She cooed.
They became friends rather quickly…
"Go away." I moaned.

"Seirnali Breanne Bray! Get out of bed this instant! You’re getting married for God’s sake!" She scolded.
"Stop saying that!" I pleaded, desperate. Clearly, I was still panicking. She tore the covers off and I curled up into a ball.
"Sweetie, you don’t have to be nervous." Clare soothed, stroking my arm. I hid my face in the pillow.
"Seirnali , we only have so much time to get you ready! Now get up!" She pulled me to my feet and shoved me in the bathroom and they started working on my hair. I groaned again. Anna smacked me. "Stop it." She smiled at me. I rolled my eyes and watched them in the mirror.
They worked on my hair for at least an hour. It was torture. When they finished that they started with the make-up. Oh, what fun.
"There." They stood back to awe their work. I sat there in the chair with my arms crossed. "Smile." Anna begged. I smiled and then went back to my blank expression. She sighed roughly and shook her head at me.
"Go put your dress on. We only have two and a half hours left." Clare urged. I stood up and went to the suitcase that I kept my dress in. I unzipped it and pulled it out of the plastic bag that it was protected in. I sighed and looked at it. I just wanted some time to myself.
They moved out the bathroom so I could get changed. I put on the strapless bra that I bought for the dress and then stepped into the wedding dress. I pulled it on and looked at my reflection.
So here I was. Nineteen and getting married. Who would have thought?
Certainly not me, that’s for sure.
I walked back out and they helped me with the back part of the dress that I couldn’t reach. I turned around to face them and they gasped. I didn’t see what the big deal was. I thought I looked kind of stupid, actually.
"You look amazing." They said concurrently. I blushed and shook my head.
"Ok, now. Here are my grandmother’s diamond earrings. Something old." Clare grinned, handing me them. They were stunning. "I want you to have them." She pleaded. I shook my head.
"I couldn’t." I gave them back.
"No, keep them." She smiled in support. I nodded passively and put them on.
"Your dress is new, so that counts as something new. Now, something borrowed." Anna went to her purse. I tilted my head, watching her. She pulled out a small band with a glittering diamond on it.
Oh, hell no!
"I’m not wearing that Anna." I widened my eyes at the garter in her hand.
"Why not? It’s a cute, fun tradition. You know the groom takes it off." She smiled playfully.
"No, that’s…embarrassing." I picked a suitable word. They both scoffed.
"What’s so embarrassing about it?" Clare laughed.
"Everything." I claimed. They exchanged a look amongst each other.
"I don’t care Seirnali . You’re wearing it." She pressed. I sighed in defeat and anger as she placed it around my leg. "Now, something blue." She looked past me thoughtfully. I clutched the sapphire stoned necklace Alex gave me. I never took it off. It was blue.
"What about my necklace?" I advocated. She smiled at my participation and nodded in approval. I grinned back at her to placate them both.
Something Old.
Something New.
Something Borrowed.
Something Blue.
I do.

Chapter 86
* Something’s Never Get Defined. In Your Heart Or In Your Mind. It Don’t Make Sense. What Can You Do? So I Won’t Try Making Sense Of You.*
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I walked out of the bathroom and headed for the bed. I was sick to my stomach, twisted with fear and dread. The bed was empty and I looked around the room for Alex. The glass sliding door was creaked open and I figured he was outside on the deck.
I quietly opened it and walked out on the cold wood. There was a warm breeze. Alex was standing with his back to me with one arm by his side and the other by his chest. I went up behind him and tapped his shoulder. He threw something into the sand and whipped his head around to look at me.
"What are you doing?" I eyed him. He gave me a surrendered look and blew the air out of his mouth. I coughed at the smoke that went up my nose. "You smoke?" I wondered.
"Not that much, just when I’m nervous or something. I don’t have a problem, I promise." He said frantically. I shook my head.
"Ok. I don’t care." I soothed. He sighed out the remains of smoke in his system and relaxed against the railing.
"Sorry." He shoved the pack of cigarettes in his pocket.
"You nervous?" I laughed, nervous myself. He nodded and shook his head at the same time.
"More excited than nervous." He grinned a shaky grin. "You?" He looked down, pulling out another cigarette from his pocket.
"Nervous." I looked away from him. He chuckled as he lit the end of it, making it glow a bright orange. I laughed under my breath and looked back up at him. He blew a puff of smoke out from his mouth and grinned. I listened to the water brushing up against the deck. I watched the flecks of sparkling dust flow off from the beach and into the water with the breeze.
"You don’t have to be nervous about anything." He touched my arm, breaking me out of my trance.
"I know." I breathed. He pulled my arm until I was against his chest.
"Trust me. It’ll be fine." He supported, and threw the finished cigarette out into the sand. I nodded my head, listening to his heart beat. He tipped my chin and his lips met mine.
I wrapped my arms around his neck in an attempt to pull myself up to his height. His arms encircled my waist and pulled me against him. He broke off and smiled at me. I returned to him a tentative smile and laughed. His smiled turned into a quizzical expression.
"This time tomorrow I’ll be Seirnali Johnson. Hmm." I mused. He grinned.
"That has a lovely ring to it." He joked. "Seirnali Breanne Johnson." He drawled out my entire name. I bit my lip, fighting a satisfied smile.
"Yep."
"Seirnali?" Richard broke through my reminiscing of last night. I turned around to look at him.
"Yes?" I replied.
"Ready?" He inquired, holding out his arm for me. I knitted my brows together and then remembered; he was walking me down the aisle. My muscles locked up and looked to the direction of the pathway to my future husband. "Nervous?" He laughed. I nodded.
"I can do this. I can do this. I can do this." I chanted to myself. He nodded at me as I shakily hooked my arm around his. He chuckled at how my arm trembled and led me to the what seemed be, mile long pathway.
I can do this?

Chapter 87
*Love Just Is. Whatever It May Be. Love Just Is. You and Me.*
©
I looked up from the sand and looked down the pathway. Anna was standing there with her dress on. She looked nice. I glanced over to see Jake in a tuxedo, perish the thought. Then I saw him.
He was wearing a tux too, but he looked good in it. He was looking at his feet, twiddling his thumbs. I smiled at the look of it. His hair was messy still though, but that was him. To him, messy was a done look. He didn’t shave, so he had the stubble.
The music started playing and my heart jumped to my throat. He looked up at me and smiled broadly. It was of awe and unadulterated happiness. My feet seemed stuck to the ground. I just could not move. Richard looked at me supportively and I took a deep breath and nodded to him. He started walking down the aisle.
I kept my eyes on my feet, being sure not trip over them. James grinned at me, I looked away from him. We reached the end of the walkway. Alex looked at the pastor impatiently.
"Who gives this woman to this man?" The pastor asked.
"I do." Richard smiled at me. I tried to smile back, but I didn’t know how.
I do. The two most frightening words I have ever heard in my entire lifetime.
The pastor nodded and I somehow ended up standing across from Alex, desperately holding onto his hands. He grinned at me and rubbed his thumb over my bare ring finger.
The pastor gave the words for Alex to recite. He said them word for word, never taking his eyes off me. I didn’t even hear him say a single thing. It was a quiet humming in my ears.
I felt my mouth moving, speaking words, but I couldn’t hear myself at all. My mind drifted back to the night where I discovered that I was being forced to marry someone. I had planned to leave him as soon as possible.
How the hell did I end up here?!
I grinned despite myself. Or at least I think I smiled. I wasn’t really sure.
He smiled at me, either out of response to my smile or just because he was happy for some strange reason. I adverted my gaze from his and looked at the sand instead. The humming in my ears went away and all the sounds became crystal clear again. The pastor finished a sentence and somehow my brain processed it, and I didn’t.
I felt his finger run over my ring finger, still not breaking his gaze at me. I looked down at my finger again and he had placed a more intricately designed wedding ring on my finger. It had a white pearl in the center of it with diamonds weaving its way around the stone. I gazed at it in incredulity, and then looked back at him. He was looking at me expectantly and I didn’t know why. Was I supposed to say something?
Say I do you moron. Everyone’s waiting.
His hands gripped mine in anxiety. I looked at the pastor and he had the same waiting expression on his face. Anna nudged me and I realized that I was supposed to say something. I took a deep breath and then the humming in my ears started up again.
"I… I do." I stuttered.
Next thing I knew Alex’s lips were pressed against mine. His hand went behind my neck and pulled me closer to him. I had no clue what was going on. There was cheering in the background. Well I guess you could call seven people being joyous ’cheering’. I heard someone clear their throat. It was the pastor. Alex reluctantly pulled away and grabbed my hand again.
To some extent, I was still hopelessly lost. Mentally anyway. It was a blur, what just happened. He led me past all the chaos. Dragging me along beside him since my legs were currently useless.
Holy s***! Did I just get married?!
Later, we were at the so called ’reception’. Anna had it all planned, of course. The cake was placed on an elegantly decorated table. There were roses; everywhere. It was almost overwhelming, yet it was just the right amount. There were a few tables set up the matched the theme. I laughed in amazement.
Jake came up behind me.
"So? You followed through with marrying him huh? You know, I was available too." He joked, taking a drink of champagne. "But, it’s your loss." He grinned. "But, no. Congratulations." He kissed me on the cheek and left before Alex could inflict physical damage to him. He mumbled something and dragged me to one of the tables.
"Calm down. He was just being, Jake." I breathed, trying to lighten the mood. More for myself than anyone else though.
Anna ran up to us. She wrapped her arms around me and hugged me tightly.
"Thanks Anna, for this." I motioned towards everything. She shook her head.
"Congratulations sweetie!" She said, capriciously. I gasped for the air that she was cutting off.
"Anna, I can’t breathe." I choked. She let me go.
"Sorry." She kissed me on the cheek and moved her excitement to Alex, whom never let go of my hand. I tried to wrap my hand around the fact that one minute I wasn’t married and then next, I was.
What the hell is wrong with me?! I should be excited!
Right. Be excited. I was married. The hard part was over with. I watched Anna chase her kids down as they gala banded around. Clare took her place in hugging Alex. Pulling back every five seconds to kiss his cheek. I giggled.
"Alright mum, thank you." He slowly pushed her away and towards me. She frowned at him and then hugged me tightly.
"Congratulations." She kissed me on the cheek.
"Thank you." I smiled. Richard just shook my hand, bless his heart. I wasn’t a huge hug fan. Well with other people anyway. I watched the few people move about, enjoying themselves. I sighed. Alex walked out in front of me, pulling on my hand.
"Would you like to go dance, Mrs. Johnson?" He smiled at the sound of it.
"Can I stand on your feet?" I narrowed my eyes.
"Of course." He nodded, taking anything.
"Ok." I gave in and wrapped my hand around his. He grinned and pulled me out to the open space of the reception party. He grabbed my waist and placed me over his feet. I balanced myself and wrapped my arms around his neck and rested my head on his chest.

Chapter 88
* Nothing Less, Nothing More. I Don't What I Love You For. Love Just Is.*
He pressed his lips against my neck as he swayed back and forth. I recollected the past few hours of the day. I had been woken up rather abruptly by my aunt and mother in law, and then got dragged down the aisle, and had what I think, was a stroke.
Oh and I was nineteen and married to a twenty three year old.
Lovely.
I was beginning to wonder how long we had been standing there. It seemed like a long time, but it was probably just a few minutes. I pulled my left hand into my view and admired the ring I had just gotten. It was amazing, to say the least. I wondered why he had gotten me another ring. I like the other perfectly fine, but this one was. Probate. Don't get me wrong though, I loved it.
"You're being awfully quiet." He commented quietly.
"Just thinking." I sighed, marveling the jewelry on my hand. "Alex? Why get such an expensive ring?" I wondered.
"I wanted to get you it. No complaining." He laughed in my ear.
"Alright." I sighed again.
"Usually, the wife is extremely excited." He joked again.
"I know. I'm sorry; I'm still in shock I guess." I shrugged. I was. He rested his forehead against mine and looked at me with an amused grin playing on his lips.
"I love you." He cooed. I rolled my eyes at him and kissed him. My heels that I was wearing made it easier for me to kiss him, without standing on the tips of my toes. He moved his hands the small of my back and pulled me against him.
"I love you too." He responded before resuming his kissing. Jake tapped him on the shoulder.

"You've been hogging her for this whole thing. I want to dance with the bride." He grinned at me. Alex eyed him. "You can trust me. Ten minutes is all I'm asking for." He offered.
"Ten minutes." He reluctantly released me and went off to his parents who were eager to talk to him. Jake placed his hands on my waist and I moved mine to his shoulders.
"So? Married huh? You grew up so fast." He faked wiping a tear from his eye. I laughed. "But, I'm happy for you." He sighed.
"Thanks." I sighed.
"You seem so happy." He said sarcastically. I chuckled.
"I know, I'm a horrible wife." I laughed. He shook his head in disagreement.
"No. You're just nervous I'm sure." He laughed and looked at me then to Alex. I followed his gaze and Alex glared icily towards Jake. I rolled my eyes. "I'll let you go before Alex comes and rips me to shreds." He scoffed. I nodded and he kissed me on the cheek, moving his arms away from me. "Felicitations." He said formerly, laughing.
"Thanks." I nodded. Alex pushed him away from me.
"Ok Jake. Ten minutes is up. Go away now." He shoved then turned to grab my hand. "Come, come my wife." He grinned. I bit my lip. "Time to cut the cake." He towed me towards the tall, yet beautiful, cake.
"Of course, the cake. I forgot about the cake." I answered languidly. I needed to be happier. I looked like I was in pain! I took a deep breath and smiled. He looked back down to my smiling face and grinned in satisfaction. He held up the perfectly burnished knife and waved it in the air. The sunlight bounced off the silver and threw the reflections in the sand. I realized that everyone was watching, waiting eagerly for him to take a slice out of it.
He wrapped my hand around his that was holding the knife. He smiled zealously and looked at the cake. I moved my hand down and the knife slid slowly down the cake. He pulled it out on the plate and held up a piece of it to my mouth. I really hated all this wedding tradition crap. I ate the sweet dessert out of his fingers and grinned at the taste of it.
Then, I grabbed some more of it off the plate and pressed the cake into his face, covering him in frosting and pudding from the filling. I laughed at the sight. He shook his head and licked what he could, away from his lips. I giggled at his mien. He gave me an apathetic expression of my immaturity and picked up the remains of the cake and did the same to me. I blanched at having cake all over me and started wiping it off with the side of my hand. He laughed raucously at this and then paused his mockery to kiss me.

Chapter 89
*Don’t Ever Ask Me For Reasons, I Can’t Give To You. Don’t Ever Ask Me Why I Live For You, I Just Do.*
vvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvv
Everyone was so happy, except me. I was probably the first bride ever to be unhappy after she got married. I blamed it all on that dammed dream I had. It was in the back of my mind, haunting me the entire time.
And the whole ‘he’s going to leave me’ thing too.
After the cake, there was more dancing. I actually danced with people other than Alex, much to his dislike. Then, his mother started bawling. It made me uncomfortable. He rolled his eyes as he tried to comfort her. Telling her we would visit her often.
It was all a blur, really.
And now, everyone had gone back to their rooms. After carrying me through the threshold, he set me on my feet in front of the mirror. I looked at my reflection. I was smiling. I didn’t feel like I had been smiling. My lips were slightly swollen from all the kissing.
I looked back at him and he was impatiently taking his jacket off and tossing his shoes across the room, hitting them against the wall on the other side. I watched him with an amused expression. He met my gaze and ignored my looks towards him. His tie hit the floor along with the belt he was wearing.
He quickly walked up to me and seized my face and kissed me fiercely. It took me off guard. He broke off and turned me around sharply and started undoing the back of my dress. The top of my dress loosened, enabling me to breathe again. I took in a deep breath of air as he turned me back around. His fingers undid the button on the white undershirt he was wearing and pulled it off his shoulders. He looked at me expectantly and I jolted back to reality and unbuttoned his slacks for him as he pulled my dress down to my feet.
He picked me up and set me down on the bed and started taking my heels off. He threw them aimlessly as well. I laughed. He grinned at me before forcing me to move back to where the pillows were.
It felt like he almost had a fever when he pressed his body against mine. He fervently pressed his mouth against mine and ran his hands up the length of my body. He seemed almost too eager if you asked me, but then again I felt like I hadn’t kissed him in forever.
I ran my hands along his broad shoulders and moaned as he kissed my neck. He pressed my back harder against the mattress and groaned out of impatience and frustration. I pushed him off me.
"Calm down would you?" I panted.
"Sorry." He took in a deep breath. "I’m sorry." He reiterated as he moved back over me.
"It’s ok." I sighed at his fanaticism. He smiled another apology to me and slowly kissed me again. I welcomed the more slower paced kissing rather than the impatience. He left my lips for other various places. My chest, my stomach, and my collarbone. I watched him with a curious expression. He looked back at me and kissed me again.
I shivered at the lack of clothing I was wearing. He pulled back and stood me on my feet. I tilted my head to the side as he tore the covers back.
"There." He said proudly. I nodded curt thanks and got under the covers. He grinned in satisfaction, or it could have been eagerness, I really wasn’t sure at the moment. I looked at him with bated breath and he crawled under the covers, situating himself above me.
I kissed him this time and the impatience of his notion returned. I rolled my eyes as his hands drifted to the only top I was wearing. I waited to see what he would do. I felt his fingers behind my back toying with the clip. He paused, waiting for my reaction as well. I continued to kiss him and he apparently took that as a confirmation.
He pulled the top off and grinned in pure satisfaction. I felt so self conscious.
"You’re fine. In fact, you‘re perfect." He assured in my ear.
"That’s what they all say." I sighed. He laughed at my thoughtful comment and then was silenced as he pressed his lips back to my skin. I tentatively pulled on his briefs, not really sure what the hell I was doing. He didn’t seem to notice, or care at that. He took his briefs off and I felt even more awkward than before. He looked at me and sighed. I watched him lean over and turn the light off. "Thank you." I grinned.
"Sure." He complied roughly, trying to take the last article of clothing I was wearing, off. I somewhat winced when his overt body touched mine. I took a deep breath and relaxed.
"Sorry."
"Mmhm." He excused, quietly laughing.
"Are you mocking me?"
"No." He went back to kissing me. I wrapped my arms around his neck and enthusiastically kissed him back. He took note of my passiveness and naturally slid in. I held in the small gasp in the back of my throat as my body went momentarily rigid from shock. "Sorry. Did I hurt you?" His tone went back to the paranoid, coddling ways.
"No." I let out a sigh instead of the gasp.
"Oh." He said, his voice still wary. I pulled his lips back to mine and he smiled. It felt weird to have him all over me. In me. I ran my hands through his unusually think hair and then down his jaw. His stubbly face, his facial hair prickling against the tips of my fingers.
A moaned passed through his lips as my tongue ran over his. He rocked back and forth and he kissed me ardently. He stopped kissing me for a terse second to catch his breath. Before I could blink, he went back to kissing me.
I moaned his name and traced my fingers down his side. He was so perfect, in so many ways. He rubbed his thumb in circles on my chest.
"I love you so much." He whispered in my ear before kissing down my body. I would have responded to him but my breathing was to labored to get a word out. He chuckled and went back to what he was doing.
We finished contemporaneously. He rolled off me and pulled me against his heaving chest. His hand followed down the length of my arm and back. I looked at the wall in front of me in a state of numbness and astonishment.
"You’re so perfect." He breathed and kissed down my neck. I turned around so I could bury my head in his chest. I kissed beneath his chin and brazenly ran my fingers down his feverish body. His arm, that was wrapped around my back, pulled me closer until my body conformed his.
"I love you." I muttered into his chest, replying from the few hours ago when he said it. The moon from outside cast a shadow over his unadulterated face. He grinned at me, his white teeth sparkling in the light. "Why are you so happy?" I laughed quietly.
"Well, I got married to you today, and I have literally never felt closer to you." He answered bluntly, running his hand up my bare back so he could play with my hair that fell down my back. I nodded wistfully. "It sucks we have to leave tomorrow though." He frowned.
"Oh well." I yawned.
"Tired?" He laughed, enjoying the moment.
"Yeah." I snuggled into his outstretched arm. "You wore me out." I sighed sarcastically.
"I know." He breathed grandiosely, laughing. "Good night." He kissed my cheek.
“‘Night."

Chapter 90
* Nothing’s ever what it seems. In Your Life or In Your Dreams. It Don’t Make Sense, What Can You Do? So I Won’t Try Making Sense Of You.*
ððððððððððððððððððððððð
The smell of breakfast woke me up. I opened my eyes and sat up, the blanket covering my bare chest. My eyes drifted across the room and then widened in shock and embarrassment.
"Muffin?" Alex offered.
"For the love of God! Put some clothes on!" I said, trying not look, but it was somewhat hard not to. I blinked.
"Take a picture, it’ll last longer." He chuckled, crawling back under the covers. My gaze followed him until his body was out of my view again. "Now, do you want this or not?"
"What?" I asked, misinterpreting.
"The muffin." He gestured, holding out to me. I looked at it and then back to him. My hand snatched it out of his and then narrowed my eyes at him and I tore off a piece and popped it in my mouth.
"Thank you." I placated and put it on the night stand so I could roll back over and bury my shame in the blankets. He yanked back the blankets and I yelped in shock. "No!" I scorned, pulling it back up around my neck. He let out an exasperated sigh and his head fell down on the pillow.
"You were fine last night." He cooed, pulling the blanket down enough to revel my shoulders. He kissed down my neck to my exposed shoulder.
"Yeah, well, you couldn’t see me, as much, last night." I explained.
"I saw you this morning." He grinned.
"…Don’t talk to me." I took the whole blanket and wrapped it around myself. I turned my head to look at him laying down on the bed without a blanket over himself. He smiled at me as I looked at him. I shook my head and turned my head into the pillow.
"What?" He laughed, tugging on the blanket.
"Nothing." I drawled.
"You nineteen year olds are funny." He sighed.
"What is that supposed to mean!?" I said, offended. I propped my elbow up so I could give him a disapproving glare. He pulled the blanket out from under my arm and ogled. I shook my head at him in disappointment. He reached over and kissed me unexpectantly.
He pushed my back against the bed and crawled over me. He attempted to pull the blanket all the way back; but being me, I didn’t let him. Which made him rather frustrated. I always found his frustration amusing.
I was such a good wife.
I placed my hands around his neck to pull him down to me. He pulled away.
" I didn’t say that nineteen year olds were bad." He gave me a crooked grin before he leaned down to kiss below my ear.
"Sure. Of course not."
I had to drag Alex out of the car to the airport. We parked farther away from the airport than necessary. He pushed me against the car and kissed my neck.
"One more time?" He begged. I shook my head.
"Twice in one day is enough now we’re going to miss the plane." I tried to say with him kissing me. He ran his hands down my sides. "Alex." I drawled.
"Fine. But when we get home." He pointed his finger at me.
"Yes, sure whatever. Now let’s go!" I demanded.
We sat down on the plane and he stared out the window, not wanting to go.
"I don’t want to go." He whined.
"I know." I rubbed his shoulder and looked at my ring. It was still stunning as before. "Maybe we can come back sometime." I yawned.
"Really?" His eyes sparkled with hope.
"Mmhm." I hummed.
"Good." He nodded curtly. I rested my head on his shoulder and closed my eyes. "You need caffeine." He laughed, flagging down the flight attendant. She walked up to him. "Can I get a coke?" He asked her. She nodded and bustled off.
"I don’t need caffeine. I need sleep." I laughed.
"Too bad, your getting caffeine instead." He wrapped his arm around my shoulder and held the plastic cup of pop up to my lips. I looked at him and he tipped the carbonated liquid down my throat.
"Thanks." I rolled my eyes. "Wow, I feel so much better." I exclaimed sarcastically.
"Good." He scoffed and kissed me.

Chapter 91
*You And Me. Nothing Less, And Nothing More. I Don’t Know What I Love You For. Love. Just. Is….*
÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷
I got out of the car and smiled at the sight of the nice house that we lived in. It looked the same. Welcoming and quaint. He huffed as he dropped a suitcase by my feet.
"Please, don’t help me." He commented. I broke out of my trance and picked up the luggage he dropped.
"Sorry." I blurted an apology. He laughed as I followed him up to the front door. His fingers went into his pocket in search for the keys. I waited patiently as he dug through all his pockets. He pulled out the silver door openers and shoved the right key in the doorknob.
I eagerly went inside before he could. I could hear him rolling his eyes. Simply to say, I missed it. I dropped the suitcases in our room and went back out to help him with his. I sat down on the bed and then laid down with my feet hanging over the edge.
"We were in Aruba and you’re happy to be back here?" He asked with a hint of incredulity.
"I know, I’m weird. I told you that you were marrying a crazy person." I sighed.
"Married. I married a crazy person." He corrected.
"Yeah yeah." I waved dismissively and crawled up and hugged the pillow. He laughed. I patted the empty space beside me and he keenly accepted my offer. Once he was lying next to me I rolled over to my side and kissed him. He grinned and moved the pillow that was between us. He stood up, pulling me along with him. I took his shirt off and his jeans. He did the same for me.
His hands softly pushed me down on the bed again and he moved over me. He was clearly happy at the physical contact he was getting in the past day. I didn’t mind either, though. His hands went through my hair as he kissed me roughly
His lips caressed my neck, a usual move for him. He still had his body balanced over me so I took the opportunity and pushed him on his back and grinned at him as I moved over him and kissed him. His hands trailed down my side after he took my top off and I kissed down his perfect chest.
Third time’s a charm….
I pulled the blanket over my head as he slowly kissed down my neck, running his hand down my bare body. His soft breathing sounding in my pounding eardrums. I pressed my face into his chest. He gently pushed me away from him and tipped my chin up and kissed me. I smiled and he traced his nose down my jaw to beneath my ear.
"So, how are you liking the married life?" He chuckled.
"Well, you’ve forced me to sleep with you a numerous amount of times. So, good I suppose."
" I have not forced you to." He contradicted. "You were willing." He nodded. I sighed and shook my head out of my own disappointment.
"Right." I drawled, sitting up. He reluctantly pulled his hands away from me.
"What time is it?" He yawned. I turned my head to look at the clock.
"Three." I stated, apathetically.
"Hmm." He mused. "What do to, what to do." He looked at me from under his lashes. I shook my head.
"No." I grinned. He let a defeated sigh slip through his parted mouth. "I’m sorry." I faked condolence. He rolled his eyes.
"Fine." He stretched his arms in the crisp air and yawned. His arms wrapped around my chest and pulled me back down to him. I let out a huff of air as my back hit the mattress. "You can at least keep me company then." He advocated, more of a demand than a suggestion though.
" I guess." I puckered, and pulled the blanket closer to my body. Despite it all, I was still exceedingly timorous. Him on the other hand was very casual about it all. He kicked the blanket off of him and crossed his ankles and placed his arms behind his head. "What is wrong with you?" I asked, my brows knitting together.
"Nothing. See, Unlike you," He moved over on his side to look at me. " I’m not uncomfortable with my body." He grinned portentously. " I don’t see why your so self conscious though." He eyed me, trying to find a good reason for my behavior.
"I don’t know." I said indolently. "Maybe you’re just conceited." I joked. He smirked. "Not that there’s anything wrong with being confident." I skimmed my finger up his stomach and tapped him on his nose. He shot me a seductive look and wrapped his hand around my wrist and pulled me against him.
"That’s sweet." He said sardonically as he kissed me.
" I know." I sighed when he pulled away. "I’m a good wife." I joked, still feeling weird about considering myself a ’wife’ at nineteen. " A nineteen year old wife." I frowned. He shook his head, always dismissing the age difference between us.
"Nineteen, twenty three." He sung. "What’s the difference?" He asked rhetorically.
"What if I was in eighth grade instead of ninth when you met me?" I wondered casually. He pursed his lips thoughtfully and looked back at the ceiling.
"Honestly?" He confirmed.
"Honestly." I repeated his words back to him.
"I still think I would have wanted to marry you." He nodded.
"No you wouldn’t! A senior and an eighth grader?" I laughed in disbelief. He shrugged, not being affected by my exclamation.
"What? It’s not the huge of an age difference. I mean, I could have made it work." He nodded, thinking of the scenario in his head. Playing it out.
"If you say so. As long as you love me." I sighed, leaning my head against his bare shoulder.
He smiled brightly. " I do love you."

Chapter 92
*…I Can’t Believe You Found Me, When No One Else Was Looking. How Did You Know Just Where I Would Be? You Broke Through All Of My Confusion. The Ups And The Downs, And You Still Didn’t Leave. I Guess That You Saw What Nobody Could See.
You Found Me.*
¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤
After a month of being married, I still wasn’t used to it at all. His mother called him every other day. Mainly wanting to talk to me though. Needless to say, being married to him wasn’t much different than before. Except, I was seeing a lot more of him than I did before we were married.
Honest to God, I lost count.
But other than that, I was genuinely happy. I would often think back to when I was freaking about getting married. It was silly, now that I thought about it. There was no point on dwelling on it now, it was gone and over with. I sighed and, by Alex’s orders, kept my eyes closed.
"Are your eyes closed?" He checked from the other room.
"Yes Alex." I shook my head, holding in my laughter.
"Ok. Hold on." He demanded. I felt the couch sink down as he sat down beside me. "Ok. You can open your eyes now." Excitement seeped into his voice. I opened my eyes and hugged him. "Happy one month anniversary." He reciprocated the embrace, a little awkwardly.
"You spoil me, you know that right?" I grinned.
"I know." He sighed, smiling. I awed at the small sapphire earrings that went perfectly with my necklace.
"I’m going to go put them on." I said, my voice raising another octave out of excitement. He laughed and nodded. I ran to the bathroom and took my other earrings out and replaced my new ones with them. They correlated flawlessly. I ran back out to him and jumped into his open arms. "Thank you." My words were muffled into his chest. His arms wound around my waist.
"You’re welcome."
"But, I didn’t get you anything." I frowned, feeling the guilt set in.
"I’ll think of a way you can repay me soon enough." He said, attempting to sound enticing. Though with his accent, he usually sounded like that to me anyway.
"I’m sure you will." I agreed, my fingers pulling on the buttons on his shirt. His hand went over mine and he laughed coyly.
"You know me so well." He mused, twiddling the hem of my shirt in between his fingers. I laughed as I stood up on my tip toes to kiss him. My hands pushed the shirt off his shoulders and then went to his neck. His hand wrapped around my calf and picked me up so I could wrap my legs around his waist.
He laid my back down on the couch and he pulled my shirt off. His jeans hit the ground, along with mine. He kissed me effusively. He ran his hands through my hair, tipping my head back and kissing under my chin. He moved his hands to my wrists and pinned them above my head….
"So what’s that, the…" He counted quietly in his head, "twelfth time this week?" He looked at me seriously. I looked at him with shock.
"Why are you keeping count!?" I raised my voice.
"Why not keep count?" He kissed me to shut me up. Inn essentially, it was hard to argue with him when he found ways to distract me. I laughed and pushed his body away from mine.
"You’re so weird." I giggled. His smiled turned to a crooked grin and he looked at me with a curious expression.
"I’m weird? Look who’s talking." He guffawed.
"Shut up." I muttered, burying my head back in his chest. His fingers traced patterns in my back. "You’re not all that normal either so there." I complied. He nodded his head, thoughtful.
"True." He sighed and lolled his head over my shoulder to look at the clock. I let out a sigh and closed my eyes, listening to his rhythmic breathing. I started to nod off. "Love?" His voice breathed in my ear. He only called me that when he wanted something.
"What?" I replied, half asleep.
"Could you get the mail?" He begged.
"Why?!"
"I’m too tired to get the mail." He yawned for emphasis.
"You’re tired?!"
He nodded.
"It’s hard being me." He objected.

"Apparently." I muttered sarcastically. He grinned and kissed my neck again. My eyes fluttered.
"Please?" He begged again.
"Fine, fine, fine." I consented, ripping the blanket off him as I stood up and walked to the bedroom to put some clothes on. He looked up at me and smiled. I shook my head at him and continued on my way.
I put on a pair of shorts and threw on a t-shirt. When I walked out of the bathroom he was slipping on a pair of jeans.
"I’m too tired." I tried to imitate his accent. He smiled impishly. I rolled my eyes and went out to the front door.
It was cold out, for April. I hugged my arms around myself as I walked down to the mailbox. Why did I have to get it? Really? I muttered a string of complaints as I walked.
I reached it and opened the small door and pulled out the few objects of mail that were in the box. What was the point? Waste of time.
"I’m to tired." I reiterated again, perfecting the imitation of his voice. "Yeah right." I scowled in the bleak darkness. I stuffed the letters under my arm and hugged my body again for warmth.
Paranoia was getting to me. Heaven knows why I felt like something was following me.
"I should be put on medication." For the paranoia and now, talking to myself. Next it would be talking to inanimate objects. I was almost to the house when I heard the c*** of a gun. I turned sharply on my heel to see a man standing there.
"Hey baby." He chimed a bottle of whiskey in his other hand. Drunk. Perfect. I eyed the silver gun in his hand though, his finger over the trigger. The shadows were guarding his face. "What are you doing out here all alone?" He sang as he walked out into the light.
Oh, please, God, no…



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JOIN THE DISCUSSION

This book has 23 comments.


on Apr. 9 2017 at 2:31 pm
GraceTaylor12 BRONZE, Coopersburg, Pennsylvania
3 articles 0 photos 11 comments

Favorite Quote:
Empowering quotes.... I don't have a favorite but I like reading them, it makes me feel unstoppable.

WOAH WOAH WOAH! WHAT???? This was amazing! Why did you have to do a cliffhanger like that??? Augh, it could have been a happy ending!

Book nerd said...
on Jul. 21 2016 at 2:00 pm
what the crap.....it couldve ended perfectly then you throw this at me ughhhhh...youre a great writer so please please please finish this like you left everyone at a clift hanger

on May. 16 2016 at 6:16 pm
TheMuseEuterpe GOLD, Lafayette, Indiana
10 articles 0 photos 12 comments

Favorite Quote:
Writing is my oxygen. Music is my carbon dioxide. ~Jessica Bell

Write more please!

on Sep. 12 2014 at 4:11 pm
Madimayisinsane, Longmont, Colorado
0 articles 0 photos 1 comment

Favorite Quote:
It's better to be hated for who you are, then to be loved for someone your not.

I love this book! Please put the next one p soon! It's amazing!

on Aug. 3 2014 at 10:44 am
EmilytheBelleofA. DIAMOND, Athens, Georgia
81 articles 5 photos 1492 comments

Favorite Quote:
To love is to be vulnerable; Triumph is born out of struggle; We notice shadows most when they stand alone in the midst of overwhelming light.

This is an amazingly written book! You are really talented! When I tarted reading this book, I was depressed. But when I started reading it, I couldn't stop. And believ me when I say I couldn't stop. I read above 80 chapters or 92 chapters in one day. Your book is that amazing. Thank you for sharing this! This is like one my few favorite romance stories. But may I ask, what happened in the end???

on May. 18 2014 at 12:43 pm
heycallmemoriarty GOLD, King George, Virginia
11 articles 0 photos 8 comments

Favorite Quote:
"The writer must write what he has to say, not speak it." -Ernest Hemingway
"IZ UR BAND RDY? anoncer pls I waz born redy k." -bandgek
"I understand what you're saying, and your comments are valuable, but I'm gonna ignore your advice." -Roald Dahl

this is such an amazing book! Oh my god! No! Don't kill her! Or Alex! Please! I will die! No! This is one of the greatest books I have ever read, please keep writing!

on Dec. 9 2013 at 8:43 pm
THANK YOU FOR 92 CHAPTERS!!!!  I've read 17 and I'm biting my fingernails.  I can imagine Alex in my head and I moan.  Have you finished it yet or are you still adding more?

on Jun. 13 2013 at 3:00 pm
Pirate_babe_91, Wilmington, North Carolina
0 articles 0 photos 1 comment
Still waiting!!

on Jun. 3 2013 at 10:54 am
mimiluvinwhat BRONZE, Austin, Texas
2 articles 0 photos 7 comments

Favorite Quote:
ummm ''live life with no regrets'' I don't belive in following fortune tellers. hahaha

wtf you have to write more you just have to plllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaasssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssse

on May. 21 2013 at 10:47 pm
blackbirds_singing BRONZE, Tulsa, Oklahoma
1 article 0 photos 6 comments

Favorite Quote:
"If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all." - Oscar Wilde

i need to tell you something.  right now.  its major important.  you began writing this book.. what? 3 years ago? and you've been working on another, supposidly.  don't get me wrong, i completly undersstand how hard and stressful it is to write in a busy work or quite possibly school enviroment, me being in school myself and working on exercericular activities.  but, and i mean this in the most pleasant and less possible thretning way, if you do not upload the sequeal, i will beat the crap out of you.  because i cant hadle the suspense!!!!!!

bellatrix said...
on Apr. 20 2013 at 2:49 am
bellatrix, Alvin, Texas
0 articles 0 photos 3 comments

Favorite Quote:
the person you love should not be the one who harms you

i love this book

on Apr. 17 2013 at 8:12 pm
FallenAngel170198 GOLD, Bundaberg, Other
13 articles 0 photos 47 comments
I love this book! Oh My Gosh, keep writing! I want to know how it is with the gun! And hurry ! I give it 5 stars!

bellatrix said...
on Mar. 26 2013 at 9:27 pm
bellatrix, Alvin, Texas
0 articles 0 photos 3 comments

Favorite Quote:
the person you love should not be the one who harms you

ello loves how are yall today i just really wanted to say I love this story cherrio

TashaB said...
on Jan. 18 2013 at 1:37 pm
TashaB, Forrest City, Arkansas
0 articles 0 photos 3 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Truth is, everybody hurts you but you have to find the ones worth suffering for"

Enjoying it hunx! Your dreams are going to go VERY far! Read some of my books :) They're nailbiting goodness....

on Mar. 5 2012 at 1:38 pm
Pirate_Babe_94 BRONZE, Wilmington, North Carolina
3 articles 0 photos 4 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Better a little which is well done, than a great deal imperfectly." - Plato

I love your story!! I've been waiting FOREVER for the next part. (:

Keep writing!!!

on Oct. 6 2011 at 10:04 pm
misguidedmuse, Athol, Idaho
0 articles 0 photos 3 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Dwell in possibilities."

Half way done! :) as of today. :) and thank you :) 

on Oct. 6 2011 at 10:03 pm
misguidedmuse, Athol, Idaho
0 articles 0 photos 3 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Dwell in possibilities."

I will. :) i am writing sequal to this book. :) and i have another book. just havent got it on here. 

on Oct. 6 2011 at 10:06 am
Mermaidmissy SILVER, Las Vegas, Nevada
8 articles 0 photos 136 comments
Wow, your book is really good. I hope you keep on writing more pages. Take a look at some of my poems and my book to please. :) 

on Oct. 5 2011 at 9:18 pm
RedWritingHood SILVER, Crawfordville, Florida
8 articles 0 photos 4 comments

Favorite Quote:
I must be a mermaid, for I have no fear of depths but a great fear of shallow living.

Totally addicting! Fantastic! Please finish!

on Oct. 5 2011 at 2:37 pm
oh ur welcome! and i will see if i know anywhere where it can be published and let you know! so how far are u in the sequel? i reaaly hope nothing happens to seirnali in the sequel and they stay together (hint, hint ;) ) and please let me know when u will be posting the sequel! this is like the 3rd time iv'e read this! keep writing!




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