How to Build a Better Princess

Food Just Seem to Make Everything Better. Oh, That And Sleep

Lucas POV

I pedaled harder up the hill, gripping the handlebars tightly. The rain began to drizzle lightly, as I glanced at my watch. I was already 20 minutes late because of my mom, who refused to wake up. Finally, I persuaded her to get up, and by the time I got to the subway, I could hear the school bell ring off in the distance. I grunted with the effort, deciding to ride my bike to school. People passed with flying colors, as I skillfully avoided them, centimeters left to spare. They shot me glares, but I tried to shrug them off, my mind set on getting to school. And seeing Riley... I thought, her face floating into my field of vision. Gah…. I'm so weird, thinking about things like this. I snapped at myself, shaking my head. Get it together! The wind whipped at my face as I rounded a corner, and I scanned the tall buildings, admiring their elegance despite their simplicity. It's really amazing, how these tall buildings can just seem so intimidating and so loving at the same time. Suddenly, a face from within a window caught my eye, and I stopped, my mouth gaping. Riley? I screeched on the brakes, and the bike fishtailed but I launched off it before it could even come to a full stop. I clambered up the fire escape, and rapped on her window.

"Open the window." I mouthed, the window fogging up from my breath, and her surprised expression caused me to grin. She is so adorable…

"Hey, what are you doing here?" she said, slowly raising the window, her pale face attracting raindrops, and I wiped on as it fell on her button nose.

"Well, I was actually on my way to school, when you caught me." I grinned, and she smiled weakly.

"Well then cowb- *cough cough*" Riley coughed, and my heart skipped a beat.

"You okay? What's wrong?" I said, placing my hand on her forehead, and she visibly relaxed.

"Your hand is so's so nice…" Riley moaned, her face lighting up with a smile, and I took a good look at her. Her pajamas were wrinkled, and her nose was bright red. She had bags under her eyes, and her voice was hoarse, obviously on the brink of disappearing.

"You sick?" I asked, worried, and she nodded, coughing roughly. "DId you take medicine?" I asked, wracking my head with possible cures.

"Sort of. Don't worry about me." She said, before coughing again. I leaned back, the raindrops still pouring down, and I shivered.

"Can I come in?"

"Oh yeah, sure." She said, scooting over, and I crawled inside, peeling off my soaked coat. "Here, I can throw that in the dryer if you want."

"Yeah, thanks." I said, rubbing my arms, as she crawled out and took my coat, before trudging out. I took in the room a little more closely. Her sheets were thrown here and there, and a cold bowl of soup sat motionless on her dresser. Pillows were askew, and the room was just a complete mess. Riley, Riley, Riley... I chuckled, picking up pillows. Within five minutes, her room was cleaner than it ever was, and I collapsed on the window seat, surveying my work.

"Okay, here's your coat. Sorry if- ACK!" Riley screamed, freezing on the spot. "What did you do to my beautiful room?"

"I cleaned it, since you obviously didn't have the energy to do anything else." I said, taking my coat. "Come on." I led her to her made bed, and layed her down gently. "Does your throat hurt?"

"Yes, a *cough cough* a- a little." She said, her voice raspy. "Because you made me scream!"

"That wasn't exactly my fault." I said, tucking her tightly into her bed. "Take a rest, I'll be right back." I hesitated, then leaned down slowly, her beautiful eyes widening as I pecked her on the forehead, grabbed the bowl of soup, and slowly walked out the door, ears burning. Did I really just do that? I thought as I started the stove, and grabbed the pot of cold soup that sat on the counter. I mean, this isn't weird at all right? I'm just skipping a little bit of school to make sure she's okay right? Suddenly a retching sound snapped my attention away from my thoughts, and I rushed to her room, toting an empty bowl.

"What's wrong?"

"Uggghhhh..." Riley moaned, puke all over her blanket, and I put the bowl in her hands.

"Take deep breaths." I said nervously, rubbing her back. I carefully bundled the puke covered blanket, and tossed it in the bathtub, when I remembered the pot of soup, and I ran to the kitchen, to find it boiling.

"Oh gosh.." I said, shutting off the heat, and ladled another bowl with the soup. I grabbed a roll of paper towels as well, and hurried into her room, where she sat, bent over the bucket, hair splayed all over her.

"Don't look... Ooomp..." She said, retching again, and I set the bowl down, yanking a few pieces of paper towels off of the roll.

"It'll be okay, calm down. Remember, deep breaths." I said, wiping her mouth, and her face screwed up adorably.

"Blech, I hate the taste of puke." She moaned, and I whisked the bowl of soup out in front of her.

"Eat this." I said forcefully, and she reluctantly took the bowl, taking a cautious sip, blowing on it with gentle wisps of air. Finally, she tilted it up, completely downing it.

"More." She slammed the bowl into my lap, and I grinned.

"All right, all right, princess." I said, taking the bowl of puke and the empty bowl. "I'll be right back." Twenty minutes later, she laid peacefully on her bed, three empty bowls on her bed stand. A wet cloth lay on her forehead, a fresh blanket snugly wrapped around her. I groaned, finally taking a seat on her window seat. At this rate, I'm going to miss all of school... I thought, running my fingers through my hair. If only I could get my dad to… I trailed off, before an idea sprang to mind, and I took out my cellphone. I hesitated, but only for a split second as I dialed the school’s number.

"Hi, Lucas Friar will be out sick today. Sorry for the late notice." I said, deepening my voice, and the voice on the other end typed something on a computer, before thanking me and ended the call, and I pumped my fist. Wait... I froze, realization hitting me square in the forehead. I just called in sick, just to watch over Riley... Riley shifted in her bed, and I held my breath, then let it out slowly. What am I going to do with you... It seems like nowadays, everybody's trying to steal MY girl... Well, I don't technically have dibs on her. But still... I smiled, as a small strand fell onto Riley's face, and my heart melted. I know I promised I would kiss her at the dance, but... How can I? Ethan already stole her... No. It's not over yet. I thought, standing up, clenching my fist. Everyone can try steal her. They can try to steal her heart. But they're going to have to search for another girl, cause she belongs to me. Cause without her... I padded slowly towards her, kneeling down and I brushed the strand away, giving me a perfect view of her beautiful face. Her lips looking so lush and red... Her face serene, eyes closed, but alive despite being asleep. Without her... It's like the sun won't shine. Like the world won't turn. I... I really need her...

"Uh Lucas?" Riley said, eyes still closed, and I fell backwards, astonished. She got up, the corners of her mouth tilted upwards, her sleepy eyes focused on me. Her hair was everywhere, and she swept it aside lazily.

"Yeah?" I said, gulping nervously, as she leaned in.

"Were you watching me sleep?"

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