Chapter 15: Fear and Jealousy (Part 1)
After Dave left I sat there in the dark and cried.
I was drained. Although it was already the middle of the night, I just felt like I needed the time to just clear my head. I found myself in my yard, lying in the grass and staring at the stars. I was hurt by what happened, but I was mostly confused by it all. What in the hell just happened? How did it even happen in the first place? A part of me wanted it to happen again, but another part realized how big of a mistake that kiss had been. As much as it hurt, Dave was right. He shouldn’t like me. He deserved so much better than someone like me. He deserved better than me and I had the memories to prove it.
His golden hair seemed to shine under the sun. I couldn’t take my eyes off of him. It had to be illegal to look that good. I had to know who he was and I needed to know it now.
“Hey Clarissa.” I whispered, struggling to get her attention. She too had been caught up in someone else’s direction. Luckily for me, it was the guy talking to the blonde I currently had my eye on. “Rissa!” I whispered yelled.
“What?!” she snapped back, annoyed at the fact that I’d distracted her. I rolled my eyes, but ignored the attitude.
“Who is that?”I asked, pointing in the direction that had us so captivated.
“Oh. Let’s see. The blonde is Jace Johnson. He’s like one of the most popular guys in school. Total rockstar in basketball; and a total player. Rumored gay. No one knows for sure, but he’s never been seen with a girlfriend or has ever been heard talking about one. Has only ever been seen with or heard talking about the guy he’s currently talking to. Now that’s Chase McKinley. Totally fucking gorgeous and football extraordinaire. Rumor is he can be a little bit aggressive in the bedroom.” I had no idea how she even knew any of this already. We were only freshmen and school was barely a month in. Yet, her snooping had been useful. Rumored gay doesn’t mean actually gay. I needed to get his attention and the sooner, the better.
“You slut is that all you think about?” I teased with a laugh trying to remove the awkward tension from between us that seemed to be becoming a permanent fixture. She just shrugged before turning a smug smile my way.
“Maria darling, not everyone is a prude like you. Some poor guy will need a crowbar when you finally decide to open those legs of yours.”
“Bitch.” I mumbled now irritated. That comment was just uncalled for.
“Inexperienced prude.” she spat back with an eye roll before we both went back to watching the guys across from us. Just when I was starting to grow tired of wishing he would look my way, he did. I gasped lightly as he sent me a wink before walking away.
At least he’d noticed me.
-2 weeks later-
First a last minute Saturday practice. Next, a last minute scheduled hangout. Then forcing me to put on a skirt and crop top that I didn’t want to wear in the first place. Followed by going to the mall. I didn’t want to go, but I was guilted into it. I didn’t understand what went wrong until he came up to me and started asking questions. Apparently it was a known fact that I was Clarissa’s best friend and that I would be the one to get the info from.
Chase wanted to know as much as he could without anyone finding out.
She didn’t believe me though. She claimed that I believe I was better than her and could just take what was hers. She didn’t care for my explanations. Instead we argued and she left me stranded without a way home. I always hated that she was two years older, but the fact that she could drive now made things that much worse. I ended up stranded more often than not.
Like now. I’m stuck walking in the rain. My phone was dead and I still was miles away from my home with no way to call my parents. It was all bullshit in the end. I was soaking wet from head to toe in a matter of minutes, but glad that I at least had the brain capacity to wear all black instead of some light colors. Just when I thought that things couldn’t get any worse, a car pulled up in front of me, cutting me off before I could cross the street.
Was I going to die now?
“Maria, right?” came his voice after he let the window down. I leaned over so I could be sure I wasn’t imagining things and gasped as I came in contact with his blue-gray eyes.
“Um...y-yeah.” I stuttered.
“I saw what happened. You walk faster than I anticipated. Need a ride?” he asked, but I was suspicious. Why not try to help me when it was happening?
“If you’re expecting something sexual out of it then I’d rather walk.” I snapped.
“That is not my intention Princess. I simply want to help.”
“Why should I even trust you after all the drama your friend just caused?” I questioned choosing to ignore that he called me Princess. Although it gave me butterflies.
“Simply, I am not him.” he had a point, but I was still too pissed to really take it into consideration. I rolled my eyes and attempted to go around his car, but he pulled up a bit, preventing me. “Come on Maria. I’ve seen you watching me. I’m just trying to help and…”
“And I wanted to show you that I’ve noticed you too. How did you think I already knew your name?” To my surprise he actually started blushing. Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad to trust someone new this once.
“You’ve noticed me Jace?” I asked, disbelief coating every word.
“Yes. Now please get in the car.”
I shrugged before walking over to the passenger side and getting in. Almost instantly he wrapped his jacket around me and turned the heat up. It was a simple black varsity jacket that I was grateful for.
“So how much did you learn about me when you were asking around?” I teased as he pulled off before laughing.
“Not really too much besides people wondering why you’re still friends with that girl.”
“Her name’s Clarissa.” I spat defensively. In the end I still felt the need to protect her. “Simply put, I love her. No one is without flaws. Hers is her temper.”
“I don’t mean to sound judgemental. I get it though. For years Chase thought he could take what was mine as is. It got bad because I let it get bad. I never stood up for myself and his behavior continued. Until I grew tired of it that is. All I’m saying is if Chase left me miles from home and was walking in the rain, I’d have to kick his ass or something.”
“I’m legally not allowed to fight.” I shrugged. “Well not legally, but after taking Karate, boxing, kickboxing and some other kind I forget the name of, my father made me sign a contract that I wouldn’t fight unless I absolutely had to.”
“It’s not everyday you meet a girl that can really kick some ass.”
“Well it’s not everyday a girl finds herself having too.” We both laughed as we went to normal conversation topics and just generally getting to know each other. At some point the rain got so bad that we were forced to pull over and sit there. I was glad for it. Jace had turned out to be everything I thought he was and more.
I couldn’t help the tears that had started up again as I laid on my back in the grass. The last time I had been kissed like that led me to a broken heart that took forever to fix. Dave was much like Jace in ways I didn’t want to admit. For that, as much as I wanted to take the next step with Dave, I knew it would only lead to the same heartache as before.
I didn’t deserve to have his love.
I barely deserved to be his friend.
Like always I would find a way to ruin it. That kiss proved me right that much more.