No Matter What
Chapter 4: PastRing Ring, Ring Ring. There was the phone again. Alex promised me that he would call me every day. He was off with his parents to a cousin’s wedding, and since he wouldn’t be back for two weeks, we’re going to contact each other a different way.
I walked to the phone and picked it up. “Hi Alex, you’ll never guess-”
“Actually Jess, this is Summer.”
“Oh hey, what’s up?”
“I was wondering if you wanted to hang out. We haven’t seen each other for days.”
“I’ll be over in five minutes.” I hung up and got into my car.
I drove into the driveway and knocked on the front door.
“Hey.” She said hugging me. “I missed you.”
“I did too. You want to go to the mall or the beach?”
We ended up going to both. Summer and I bought brand new outfits, plus we had our nails done.
At the end of the day, Summer asked me to stay over. She wanted to talk about Alex, I was pretty sure.
“Is he a good kisser?” She asked.
“Very. He doesn’t take control, but he doesn’t make me lead either. Every time he kisses me it sends chills down my back just like the first time.”
“What’s he like with you?”
“Well, he’s very comforting, caring, and he understands me. It’s like we’re different in many ways but the same in others.”
“You haven’t . . . you know.”
“No, we haven’t had sex yet, I’m not ready. Plus we haven’t talked about it. We’re fine where we are right now.”
“Has he said ‘I love you’ yet?”
“No.” I said.
“Do you think he’ll tell you soon? Like prom?” She asked as she put a movie in the player.
“I don’t know. I haven’t even told him yet.”
“Do you love him?”
I smiled and admitted, “I think so.”
I got the remote and pushed ‘play’, but Summer told me to wait.
“Did we forget anything?”
“No, it’s just that I wanted to talk to you about Alex.”
I sat up, “We just did. What else is there?”
She looked serious. “I don’t want you to be mad at me, but I feel like our relationship has come down ever since you and Alex have been getting more into yours. We haven’t had a sleepover in months.”
“What are you saying? Alex is more important than you?”
“That’s kind of how I feel.”
I got up on my feet. “I’m sorry Summer, I guess I shouldn’t revolve myself around Alex. It’s just that I like him so much, and it’s the way he makes me feel when I’m with him.”
“Jess I think you should take a break from him for a while.”
“Why?!” I demanded.
“You keep shutting the rest of the world out.” She answered.
Just because she was feeling left out didn’t mean I had to leave Alex. “No I don’t!”
“Oh yeah? When’s the last time you went out with just friends without Alex? You can’t stay away from him and you know it. If you just could see how he’s keeping you locked up.”
“Summer, I think you’re the only one with the problem. I think you’re just jealous that I am having fun where I am right now and you aren’t.”
“Yes, I do!” I shouted.
“Well maybe you should just leave and go have more fun without me!” She yelled back.
“Maybe I should!” I picked up my stuff and stormed out of the house.
The next day was going to be better. Alex was coming back. I was going to meet him at the airport, and then take him out to dinner tonight. Tonight was also when I was going to tell him that I loved him.
When he got off the plane he was helping a girl with her luggage. It looked like he was being a little too friendly to her. He took her suitcases in one hand and gave her a kiss on the cheek. Then, he looked around until he spotted me. When he did, he waved and smiled. Alex set the girl’s luggage on a nearby cart and ran.
He ran with open arms. He came up and spun me around in his arms.
“I missed you so much!” I said kissing him.
“I did too.”
I broke away and asked, “Who’s this?”
He looked over his shoulder, set me down, and said, “This is Maria, my sister.”
I guess there was a little resemblance between them two with the blond hair, but I was too worried to notice. “Hi, I’m Jessica.”
Maria grinned and said, “Nice to meet you. I have heard way too much about you from my brother.”
“I didn’t know you had a sister Alex. Why didn’t you tell me?”
He laughed and said, “You never asked.”
“Ha-ha, very funny.” I said. “We better go before I get a parking ticket.”
He pulled me close again, not letting me go.
“Later.” I warned. Alex knew what I was talking about.
“Fine.” He gave up.
Alex and I helped Maria get her stuff in the car, and we drove off. Alex let his sister take the front seat of my car while he took the back and fell asleep.
While Alex was sleeping Maria asked some questions about school. She asked me about my relationship with Alex and even about my family.
When we got back to Alex’s house I helped unload their luggage. Maria went upstairs to take a shower, and Alex’s parents were still gone.
“Is it later yet?” Alex asked me with pleading eyes, “I’ve missed you so much, I need you now.”
I took his hand and led him to his room. “Yes.”
“Good.” Alex kissed me.
We got tangled up in his unmade bed sheets. He had his hands moving up and down my arms, finally wrapping his arms around me. Alex was kissing my neck when I let myself say what I had wanted to say, “I love you, Alex.”
Alex completely stopped what he was doing and looked at me. “What?”
“I love you.” The second time was easier.
All of a sudden we heard a knock on the door, “Alex, mom wants to talk to you. She’s on the phone.”
I hadn’t heard the phone ring, and I thought Maria was in the shower. I glanced at the clock. We had been in here for almost thirty minutes.
“I’m coming.” He answered. Alex got up and went to the door. He took the phone from Maria and said, “Hey mom, what’s up?”
I stepped off his bed and grabbed my keys. Then I told Maria that I would call later.
On my way home Alex called. “Hey.”
“Hey why’d you leave?” He asked. “I wanted to be with you.”
“It seemed like you didn’t have anything to say, so I thought I would go home and get ready for tonight.”
I didn’t hear his voice for about a minute. “Jess I don’t think I can make it tonight. When my mom called she said their car broke down. I have to go get them.”
“Can’t Maria?” I know I was being selfish, but I hadn’t seen him in so long.
“She’s going with me. I’m sorry Jess. I’ll make it up to you. I promise.”
“That’s fine.” I was about ready to hang up.
“Wait, you know what you said earlier? It was just a shock to me. You know how I feel about you.”
“Yeah,” I waited.
He paused, “Jessica, I love-”
“Alex! We need to go.” I heard his sister say in the background.
“I’m sorry.” Alex said.
“It’s fine. I’ll see you tomorrow.” I set down the phone.
“Bye.” He hung up.
I drove the rest of the way home just thinking. Alex was about to say he loved me too if only his sister would have waited another second.
That night as I got ready for bed I heard taps against my window. I walked over to it and opened the curtains. I saw Alex standing outside knocking on my window.
“Open the window!” He yelled.
I did and Alex climbed down inside my room. As he sat on my windowsill I asked, “What are you doing here?”
“We had a date, I missed it and I want to tell you how I feel. It’s important.”
“How much time do we have?” I asked. “What did your parents say?”
“They don’t know, and yours don’t either. So I can stay as long as you want me to.”
“My parents are going to leave for work early tomorrow and won’t bother me. Can you stay all night?”
“Like I said, anything you want.” He showed me his backpack.
As I left the window open, I pulled him inside and folded myself in his arms.
He let go, looked at me with a smile, and he said the words I’ve been waiting to hear, “I love you Jessica.”
I grinned back and kissed him. Alex walked me back to my bed. As I sat down, Alex kept kissing me. I stopped him and took my robe off so we could have more room, but Alex must have taken it as an invitation because he started sliding the straps of my tang-top down.
As he did, I noticed he wanted more.
I held his hand still, “Wait.”
“I’m sorry.” He whispered. “I didn’t know that you-”
“Alex, do you have protection?”
He looked up and said, “Yeah. I always do, just in case.”
“Are we ready?” I asked.
“Are you?” He questioned me.
“Do you want to?”
“More than anything, but if you don’t we don’t have to. I’m fine with it just where it is.”
“I just don’t think we should with my parents upstairs. And I’m not sure.”
“How about we just stick with this tonight?” Alex kissed me.
After a while we both fell asleep in each other’s arms. The next morning, my parents left early as I had said, and Alex was still there.
When I woke up I went to take a shower. By the time I got out Alex was up. I walked to my room in my towel. Alex was sitting on my bed looking out the window. He watched me walk in the room. “Hey, I was wondering where you went.”
He stood up and walked over by me.
“Alex, can I get dressed first?”
“Yeah, I have to change too.” He took his bag he brought and went to the bathroom.
When he came back, I was already dressed. He knocked on the door before he came in.
“It’s okay Alex.” I said. He walked in and saw me struggling to shut the window. I managed to get it shut, but I closed my finger in it. “Ow!”
Alex came to my side and opened the window so I could get my finger out.
“Is it okay?” He asked taking it my hand.
“I think so, just a little swollen.” It still hurt. “Can you get me some ice?”
When the ice was on it, it felt much better.
We watched TV for a while. When the commercial came on Alex asked how my finger felt.
“It’s better now that I have ice, but you know what would make it feel even better?” I scooted closer to him.
“What?” He asked.
“If you could kiss it for me,” I held my hand up and he kissed it.
“That better?” He asked, smiling.
“Much.” I replied.
We went out for lunch later and to the beach. We also went to get a coffee.
When we got to the counter at Starbucks, I received my coffee, took a sip, and spit it out at Alex.
“Oh my gosh! I am so sorry.”
Alex grabbed a bunch of napkins and asked, “Too hot?”
“No, it’s gross, how can you drink this stuff?”
“You’ve never had coffee before?”
“No.” I said.
He laughed and instead we got sodas.
“Really?” He asked later, “You have never tasted coffee before? I live on it.”
“No, I haven’t, I don’t have a reason to.”
When we got to his house, I was still helping him get the stain out of his shirt. “Hey I’m really sorry about the stain. I can get you a new shirt.”
“It’s fine Jess. It’s just a shirt. I’ll go put a new one on.”
He ran upstairs and I followed him, but he hadn’t noticed until I snuck in while he pulled off him stained shirt. I slipped my arms around his waist, hugging him from behind.
“What are you doing?” He turned around to face me, “Come up to ruin my whole wardrobe?”
“I didn’t mean to do it on purpose,” I tried. “I promise it will never happen again.”
He leaned down to kiss me, “I’m not worried.”
His warm, bare skin had me enthralled into more. I just couldn’t bear the thought of stopping now. We kissed until Alex brought me down on his bed with him, kissing me rougher than before. I had gotten used to his kisses, but nothing like this. He slowly pulled up my shirt and kissed my stomach, making his way lower until he hit the edge of my jeans.
“Alex,” I murmured.
“I know, I know,” He kissed me on the mouth again, “I won’t go anywhere you don’t want to go.”
Alex dropped me off at my house at nine. Mom was waiting for me.
“How was your day with Alex?” She asked.
“It was fine.”
“Can I talk to you for a minute?”
“Sure.” I went to the couch and sat by her.
“Tell me you two are being responsible.”
“Mom, we haven’t done anything yet. We are just . . .” I stopped, “there is nothing to worry about.” I insisted.
“I hope so, you’ve been spending so much time with him, we never see you here anymore.” She sighed, “Just be careful, I don’t want you end up hurt.”
“Thanks mom.” I got off the couch and headed to my room, everyone thought that Alex and I were having sex. I didn’t even know if I was ready. When would I be?