Chapter 14: Awakened (Part 4)
Over the next two days, I tried hard to keep myself busy, I couldn’t get my mind off of everything. It was harder than I ever expected. All I knew was that I had to protect her at all costs. It was what I had agreed too and it was what my heart was telling me to do. However, I didn’t have enough information to figure out how to do so. It frustrated me more.
To make matters worse, I overheard a conversation with her mother the other night. It broke my heart. How was I supposed to protect her from her biggest bully, when the biggest bully she had was the one that gave her life? I tried and tried to both call and text her, but she wouldn’t answer. I was tired of just sitting around, but was still too scared to take my usual path and climb the ladder to her room.
My only hope was that our relationship would get easier and we’d have no secrets that held us back from being there for each other.
Mickey: Hey Minnie.
Mickey: I’m going shopping to restock my mini-fridge. Want to keep me company?
Minnie: Not today Mickey.
Mickey: Are you okay?
Minnie: Bad fight with mom. I just want to be left alone.
Mickey: I’m sorry.
My nerves were starting to get bad. This wouldn’t be the first time this has happened, but it would be the first time that I’ve seen the after effects firsthand. I couldn’t take it anymore though. She wasn’t responding to anything and all I could think about were those old texts which made me wish she hadn’t responded. Sucking up whatever was stopping me, I went over to her house and knocked on the door.
“Well hello David.” her father smiled and I let go of a breath I hadn’t even realized I’d been hoping. I was overjoyed that it had been him to answer the door.
“Mr.Anise hey. Um...is Maria here?”
“Yeah. She’s in her room.”
“Do you mind?” I asked trying to be as polite as possible. I was never too sure how he felt about me.
“No problem. Go ahead.” he smiled as I smiled back. I tried to stop myself from running because that would be rude, but walking felt too slow. I was already at her door by the time I decided on a brisk walk.
I was scared again. What if she really didn’t want to see me? What if her avoidance wasn’t simply because of her mom? I’m man enough to admit when I mess up; and apparently with Maria all I did was fuck up. It was hard trying to only be friends with someone you had feelings for. Shaking away the thoughts, I raised my fist and knocked on the door before I could talk myself out of it again. I barely heard her say to come in, but the sound of her voice registering in my mind allowed my tense muscles to relax.
“Minnie, I have been trying to call you all day.” I smiled trying to hide my anxiety. Then I saw it. A scene I was so familiar with that it pained me to see her in it. This wasn’t something that I wanted us to have in common. “What’s wrong Minnie? Are you okay?” my voice was barely a whisper. Was this what it was like all those other times my narcissistic stupidity wouldn’t let me check on her?
“I got into a fight with my mom a few days ago. I haven’t been able to really sleep or anything since. I’ve gotten less than two hours to be exact.” she sighed. She sounded so drained. So tired. Yet it still felt like she wasn’t telling me the entire truth.
“Is this only because of your mom, or is it because of me too? I know that I’ve been m.i.a. These past couple of days and I’m so sorry Minnie. I was just busy.” Too busy hating myself and being jealous because another guy was talking to you.
“It’s not because of you Dave, I do have a life outside of you.” she snapped, making me flinch. “I’m sorry, I just get like this sometimes. I wasn’t answering your text and calls because I didn’t want you to have to deal with it. Plus I didn’t want anyone bothering me.” I could see the internal battle she was having, I’ve had it so many times myself. She didn’t know if she wanted me to stay or go. Pushing me away would ensure she’d be able to keep her secrets. Allowing me to stay would mean opening me up to another part of her she’d learn to hide. It would mean we would get closer. There would be more understanding for the both of us. It was dangerous for me. I was already obsessed with her, but this would be a step towards falling. I was already head over heels for her, but did I really want to fall for her? Nevermind the danger, I knew I had to be her friend. I had to be her Mickey. I had to show her why I wore this chain. So I began taking my shoes off and my shirt and crawled into bed on side of her. From the look on her face, she clearly wasn’t expecting me to go this far.
“Come here Minie.” I whispered, opening my arms wide to her. She only smiled before nestling in on my chest and yawning. I could help myself as I pulled her closer to me and held her tight. “Comfy?” I teased, raking my fingers through her hair as she nodded. “So, what do you want to do?” I was still whispering for some reason. This moment may have been just two friends being there for her, but for me it was such a romantic thing and I was loving it.
“I’m a bit tired.” she yawned again.
“Then we’ll nap, okay?”
“Don’t mention it, Minnie. Just close your eyes and rest.” I yawned slowly rocking us back and forth. She didn’t need to know that I had been in an endless cycle of anxiety and couldn’t sleep either. All that mattered was that I was here for her and was willing to do anything she wanted. Luckily all she wanted was to sleep.
… … … … … …
I was in a nightmare. It felt like all my secrets were being revealed and there was nothing I could do about it. I was drowning and no matter how I tried to breathe, I couldn’t. My mind was yelling at me to wake up. Begging and pleading not to ruin the new us, but I couldn’t move. I-
“What time is it?” I asked groggily to no one in particular. I felt disoriented, but the minute her face came into view it all came flowing back.
“Oh,” she blushed. Has she been watching me sleep? “Um, it’s a little after nine.”
“Wow. Guess we really did sleep the day away.” I smiled as her blush got a little deeper..
“Kinda.” she giggled. It was like music to my ears hearing her laugh again.
“It’s good hearing you laugh again.” I voiced unable to stop myself from speaking my thoughts. This was dangerous territory. Usually, I had time to prepare myself to be around her. This time she was here as soon as we woke up and all I wanted was for her to keep cuddling me. I was lost in the feeling and couldn’t handle it.
“Flirt.” she laughed rolling her eyes. “Anyways, since you’re up do you want to go half on a pizza. We can get meat lovers.”
“Fine with me.” I shrugged. Sometimes it was weird when she chose other food. I had grown used to eating tacos most of the time. “Only if we can watch tv too. Then I have to go love. You can’t just kidnap me for the day and think I’m okay with it.” I joked as she rolled her eyes. This was quickly turning into one of my most favorite days ever.
“You’re so weird Mickey.″ She laughed, hitting me with a pillow multiple times.
“I’m just glad I can make you smile.” I breathed catching the pillow on her final swing as she just stared at me. This was what I meant. I could have stopped right there and tried to rectify that little slip, but something compelled me to keep going. “I like the happier you better Minnie. I worry less.” I was having heart palpitations and hoping she wouldn’t question me on it.
“You mush.” she blushed as I sighed in relief. I should have stopped there seeing as I had gotten away with confessing a little bit, but I still pushed further. I tried to stare her in her eyes, but she kept looking away. It gave me hope that I could make her so shy. I laughed before lifting her onto my lap as she ignored the action and grabbed her phone to order the pizza. I didn’t mind, at least I was able to continue cuddling her. When she was done she didn’t move away, instead she leaned back and relaxed herself. I wrapped my arms around her, bringing her closer to me as she turned on some show that wouldn’t catch my attention. Not with her being this close to me.
Time seemed to stop as we just sat there like this was normal for us. She was between my legs, her back pressed against my front. The lights were off with only a lamp on and the tv was turned down low to the point I could hear her breathing. It was such a soft sound and focusing on it almost lulled me back to sleep, but then the door opened and in walked her dad carrying our pizza.
“Ya’ll pizza is here. Showed up when I did.” he laughed. I could feel her getting ready to move and although I know it was selfish, I held her tighter. I just wanted to stay like this for a moment longer. “I already paid for it. My way of saying thank you.”
“For?” I questioned starting to notice how tired he looked. Something must have happened while we were sleeping. He didn’t look like this when he opened the door. Nevermind the fact that he’d just gotten back. I wasn’t even sure if Maria had known he was here or not.
“I talk to my daughter all the time, son. It killed me not being here for her this once, but the fact that you are even in here proves you were able to get to her. So thank you for being here with her when I couldn’t be.” So she didn’t know. He must’ve come here seconds before I arrived and decided to test our friendship. I understood it.
“I’ll be here any time she needs me sir. She keeps me grounded.” he smiled at me before he started to silently mock us by making kiss faces at me. At this point I realized Maria must’ve been pretending to sleep. I tried not to laugh as he slowly backed out of the room before mouthing how he was telling my mom and closing the door. Great. Now she was going to go gaga over it. We fell into silence as I worked up the courage to repeat my words to her. “I meant what I said Minnie. Any time.” I breathed leaning down to kiss her on the top of her head.
“I know Mickey, I know.” We fell into silence again, but apparently that wasn’t enough for me. I always have to fuck it up.
“Do you know how much I like you?” I asked nervously.
“I like you too Mickey.” I have no clue if she meant it how I meant it, but it was enough for me. Grabbing her by the chin I lifted her head up as I lowered my own and finally got to taste her lips. When our lips connected a kind of sensation I had never felt before surged through me. I wanted nothing more than to taste the rest of her and still somehow never remove my lips from hers. She drove me crazy. There was nothing I wouldn’t do for her, and that was the problem. As perfect as her lips felt against mine, I couldn’t allow myself to stay a monster just because I wasn’t one to her. I wasn’t ready for her and that understanding broke me more than I could bear.
“I like you so much Minnie, but I can’t like you. I’m sorry.” I blurted feeling like an ass the moment the words were out of my mouth. I hated myself for doing it, but it was the only way I knew how. We couldn’t fall for each other. It wouldn’t end well.
We’d only end up hurting each other.