Chapter NineMature

I slept the day away, and awoke to the night sky. My head hurt, I was exhausted, and I didn’t care to check my phone. Without counting today, I had three days before school started, and already I was overwhelmed. What the hell was that last night? Had I dreamt them all up, or were they really here? At breakfast, or dinner I should say, I found my answer lying atop the coffee table; its worn brown leather staring over at me tauntingly. After having stared at it long enough, I pushed my cereal bowl away, and retrieved it. It was a lot heavier than it looked, and as I turned the red crystal lock, and the book sprung loose; I flipped through the pages until something caught my eye. The words written below familiar to me, although, I am unsure as to how that is possible.

                It wasn’t that they were going to fall in love but, the inescapable fact that they would. There is no error, no room for doubt. They were meant for each other whether they liked it or not.

                I slammed the book shut unable to move past those words, and threw it on the couch. This cannot be happening! I scold myself. There is no freaking way any of it is true. Sure, I may feel something toward Theo that I can’t describe but, that doesn’t mean anything. It can’t, there is no way. Suddenly my phone begins to ring, and I quickly race into my room to find it. It’s my parents.  “Hey sweetie, how has your day been.” My mom asks me, her voice nearly enough to make me to break down after everything that has happened lately. “Emery?”

                “I . . . uh, I slept all day actually. I just woke up.”

“Oh no, are you feeling ill?” she asked almost instantly. She’s sick? I heard my dad’s voice, somewhere off in the distance. “Sweetie say something, you’re worrying me.”

                “Sorry, I’m just exhausted.” I finally say, in earnest. “I think I’m just going to head back to back, and try to sleep off whatever it is.”

“Okay, well we love you.” I can hear the strain in her voice. “We may be unreachable tomorrow if you call us; we are heading into a no cell zone, so signal out here will be desolate.”

                “Good to know.” I say, and we hang up minutes later.

                Flipping through my missed calls, all but, a few are from Logan, and suddenly I feel guilty for not answering. What if something had happened after he left? Pressing the call button next to his contact, the phone barely rings before he picks up. “Hey Em, where have you been all day?” I sigh a weighted relief when he seems okay.

“I’m sorry; I hadn’t felt well, so I decided to rest.” I can hear someone in the background of the call, and for a second I wonder if it Mila. If so I hope she isn’t mad that I called him back before her; she was the type of person who would think something of it. “Is that Mila?” I come out and ask?

                “No, it’s Sara.” He says in a matter of fact sort of way. No. Just Sara. I say to myself, mimicking his placid tone of voice as if it were something of the usual for them to hang out. “Hey, do you mind if I come over after. I need to talk to you about last night.”

“Last night?” I ask, as if I hadn’t heard correctly.

                “Yeah, is it okay or no?”

“Sure.” I sigh into my hands. Then run my fingers through my hair, flipping a section off to the side. “I’ll get ready.”

                “Cool, see you in a beat.” He says, and then hangs up. The white fuzz of an empty line resonating deep inside my ear; I was alone. Yup, see you soon. I mouth aloud to myself. Can’t wait.

                I tucked my hair into a towel, and had just enough time after my shower to pull on some clothes before Logan arrived. He smelled of mint chocolate chip ice cream, and sugar cone, as he pressed me into a tight hug before settling on the couch. I stood the entire time, the memory of last night forever marking this room with questions, and self-doubt. “What’s up?” I asked after he had yet to say anything. I stood, arms crossed, blocking the TV.

                “Did we . . .?” He began, before the words seemed too hard for him to get out.

“What Logan?” I roll my eyes not in the mood for him beating around the bush. “Spit it out.”

                “Okay, did we sleep together last night?”

“What?” I exclaim, completely caught off guard by what he had just asked. “What the hell made you think that?”

                “I don’t know.” His tone sounded flustered, and he raked a hand through his hair. “It’s just, when I woke up this morning I felt like a million buck. Almost as if I had been asleep for days; I felt amazing.” He paused, his mind moving towards the part that made him think that we had slept together. “But, then I remembered being at your house, and watching a movie, and I had wanted to kiss you.”

“I know.” I admitted. I had felt that he did but, we sure as hell didn’t act upon it.

                “Did we?”

“No Logan, we didn’t. Now continue.”

                “Well, anyways.  After that I can’t remember a thing; it’s as if my mind was wiped clean.” He finally gets to the point. “And when you didn’t answer, I thought you were avoiding me, and even now with you standing so far away I . . .”

“So because of all that, you somehow came to the conclusion that we slept together?” I said. My tone raised slightly above embarrassed, and flat out pissed. What did that say about me, the fact that he automatically assumed because of all that we slept together? I’m still a virgin for crying out loud! He really thinks I would just up, and sleep with him because he had the urge to kiss me? Was this really my best friend sitting in front of me, or did he really have brain damage?

“I just wasn’t sure, and rather than pretending it never happened, I came to you.”

Embarrassed by the whole thing, I flush bright red, and collapse in the chair. To hell with the past few days, I give up. Raising my hands, I rub at my temples trying to sooth my growing headache. “What’s this?” I hear Logan’s voice behind closed eyes, and open to see him holding Gray’s book.  “It looks old.”

“Put that down.” I yell practically catapulting myself off the chair to take it from him; the look on his face, one of complete surprise. “It’s an antique, and if anything happens to it my father will kill me.”

“Okay,” he says, and stands to leave. I set the book back of the coffee table, and follow him to the door. “I think someone has been sipping some crazy juice lately.” He smiled playfully, and opened the door. If only. I roll my eyes at myself. Wishing it were as simple as that.

“Says that guy who can’t remember an entire night.” I retort.

“Touché” He smiled turning to face me. “That was good.”

                “Yeah, well, I’m quick on my feet.”

It’s then Logan’s face drops, and I watch him lean against the side of my door frame. His lips part first, and then his hands find my face. Before I know what to do, he closes the distance between us, and kisses me. His hands moving up to my hair, knocking the towel to the ground so as my hair brushes down my back. “You’re so beautiful.” His voice is broken, his hand still holding me within reach.  I’m too stunned from what had just happened to say anything.  Stunned, and a little more than caught off guard. Logan had kissed me, really kissed me, and I was afraid he might do it again. But, what scared me even more is what might happen if he did, and I pull away. Would we still be friends, or would it be too hard for him knowing I don’t feel the same?

Sensing he was about to lean in once more, I kiss the palm of his hand a pull out of his reach. “I should get to bed.” I smile up at him. “Good night.” I said after he hadn’t moved, and with another smile he jogged back to his car. 

The End

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