I swallow hard and walk slowly to where the picture frame used to stand, inspecting the space meticulously. The lilac walls around the bedside cabinet bare nothing on them, no scratches or marks. The other items on the desk have been unmoved, nothing touched or disturbed except the photo frame. There is now a rectangle of dust where the edges of the frame should have been and a strange scent permeates the air, almost like rubber being burnt.
My heart thumps inside my chest as I sit down on my bed, the mattress feeling foreign now that I know someone has been in my room. I feel like my space is no longer my own.
My right leg bobs up and down as I tap each tip of my fingers onto the pad of my thumb. I get up, closing the window before sitting back down again, leg still bobbing, fingers still tapping.
I should probably call someone, my mum, the police but my mum would freak out and I don’t think this is serious enough to call the police. I take my phone out, finding my contacts, scrolling down to Rolan’s name. I don’t really know what Rolan will be able to do but it’s best to tell at least someone.
“Hello, Rolan speaking.” His voice filters through my phone.
“Hey, Rolan. It’s Mae. Look sorry, to bother you, I just.”
“No, no, your not bothering me. What’s up? You sound worried.”
“Yeah,” I say, biting my lip anxiously. Leg still bobbing, fingers still tapping. “Well I was at my house and I think, actually I know someone was in my room. The picture frame on my desk was taken and the window was left wide open and it wasn’t my mum. She’s not home. I just, I don’t really know what to do?” I say, scanning my room nervously.
“I’ll be there in ten minutes, ok.” He says. I hear shuffling, things falling, things being thrown about, talking and a front door being shut all in the space of about thirty, maybe forty seconds.
“And, Mae baby, if anyone tries to hurt you punch them in the throat and run, ok.” He says it jokingly but I can hear the hint of seriousness in his voice.
I smile, “Sure will.” I reply.
“Good. I’ll be there soon.”
“See you soon.”
The call ends and everything goes quiet, eerily quiet. I stand up and make my way downstairs not before looking back at my room, scanning it to make sure I haven’t missed anything. I pad softly to the kitchen, taking out a rolling pin from one of the kitchen draws. I hold the rolling pin in one hand and smack it down into the palm of my other hand, hoping to look threatening to, well, possible threats.
The doorbell rings and I jump, not expecting it so soon. I creep out quietly, looking through the peephole, rolling pin raised. Rolan’s face comes into to view, all wide and distorted-like. I giggle to myself because of how silly he looks before shaking my head. Leave it to me to be laughing at something so stupid when my life is in danger.
I notice two other people that stand with Rolan. Both are tall, like him. The one to the right of him, has black hair and strong , angular features and wears thick, square-rimmed glasses. He is dressed smartly, stereotypically nerd-like whereas the other one on Rolan’s left has russet coloured hair. His features are softer than, glasses’ is, but he still looks handsome. He wears a pair of blue jeans with a baggy grey jumper and Vans on his feet.
I open the door and the one with the Vans on puts his hands up in surrender, a cheeky smile on his lips.
“Alright, calm down, luv. We’re the ones here to help.” He looks at me with the rolling pin raised in my hand. I laugh nervously as I slowly lower it. “Sorry,”
The other one, glasses, turns to his friend with a look of utter boredom, “Really Ethan, can’t you refrain from acting like a child for at least a moment?”
“Can’t you refrain yourself from acting like such a stuck up fart for at least a moment.” Ethan replies.
Rolan rolls his eyes and interrupts the two, “Hi, Mae. These two are Colton.” He motions to his right , “And Ethan.” He motions to the left, “I thought these two idiots should come along just in case something bad was happening. I hope that’s ok?”
“Oh yeah, no, that’s, it’s fine. Uh, come in.” I move aside and allow them to walk in unable to stop myself from staring at both Colton and Ethan. Their eyes are like fluorescent blue, icy and light but bright and harsh. They are absolutely mesmerising.
I look away though as soon as I notice Colton looking me up and down, critically judging and disapproving of what he finds.
“You guys got here quickly.” I say, “Really quickly, actually.”
“We were nearby.” Colton says.
“Oh, right.” I reply, feeling slightly intimidated by his unwavering stare.
“So,” Ethan says, sensing some tension in the air, “My dad’s like head of security for Rolan and his family. So I’m like kind of a big deal.” He says, face morphing into one of mock snobbery and I laugh lightly at his joke. “This one here,” he motions to Rolan, “Thought that I could take a look at your room, see if there’s anything ‘dangerous’ left.”
“Oh uh, cool. It’s this way.” They all follow me upstairs to my room and I open the door for them to take a look. They inspect the place quietly, mumbling things to each other.
“Is everything ok?” I ask.
Rolan turns to me with a smile and nods. He places his hands gently on my cheek and indicates for me to turn my head from side to side. He looks me up and down, eyes assessing. “Are you hurt?” He asks.
I shake my head, “I didn’t actually see anyone, I heard noises upstairs and then I went to my room and the window was open and my picture was gone.”
“Was there anything else left, anything else suspicious?” Rolan asks.
My heart thumps as I remember the piece of paper that was left. It presses tightly against my skin in my pocket and feels uncomfortably warm. “I, uh, well.” Would it scare him, being the target of some maniac’s insane game? Would he still trust me once he sees it? Will he think that I want to get rid of him?
“What’s that, there?” Colton says, spying the corner of the piece of paper.
“Um, it was left in place of the frame.” I mutter, handing it to them. Rolan takes it and studies it before handing it to Colton and Ethan. “Nothing else was left.”
“I want you to stay with me today, ok? At mine. It’s safer, we have security.”
“Rolan, it’s not that easy. My mum lives here too, she’d be at risk too and she’d freak if I just disappear. I can’t leave.”
Rolan nods, “Ok, I’ll stay over.”
“What!” I say, staring at him in shock.
“I’ll stay over for the night and make sure you’re safe.”
“Rolan you can’t just stay over. My mum, my mum doesn’t like you very much.” I look away but all he does is laugh, this smug type of laugh.
“She doesn’t have to know.” He says, raising his eyebrow.
I bite my lip, head going to one side then the other as I contemplate the situation,“Fine, but only because I’m terrified to be left alone.”
“Good.” He says, “I would have stayed anyway with or without your permission. You know that.” He says, bringing me into his embrace.
“I know, Rolan.” I reply
“Ok well, let me just check outside to see if there’s anything dangerous then we’ll be out of your hair.” Ethan says.
“Great. Not great, like I want you to leave but you know, cool.” I take a breath, composing myself, “I meant cool.”
“Gotcha.” Ethan says, smiling kindly “See you around. Come on, grumpy.” He says to Colton, pinching his cheeks.
Colton pulls back agitatedly and I think...hisses, “Get off me, Ethan.”
“See, grumpy.” Ethan says to me with a wink. They close my bedroom door, leaving Rolan and I alone.
“Shouldn’t I see them out, I’m being a bad host.” I say.
“They can see themselves out.” Rolan replies.
“Or at least thank them for coming to help.”
“They’re already gone.” Rolan says.
“How do you know?”
“I just do and besides I want you all to myself.” He picks me up and throws me over his shoulder, bringing me over to my bed.
“Rolan put me down,” I laugh loudly as he places me on the bed, body hovering over mine.
“Ah, ah, ah,” I say, waggling my finger in the air, “Shoes off.”
“You actually going to make me take my shoes off.” He says, face morphing into disbelief.
“Yes, I’m actually going to make you take your shoes off.” I say, “You should’ve taken them off downstairs.” Rolan sighs then complies and flicks his shoes off.
“Happy?” He asks.
“Good.” He says, “I always want to see you happy.”
I giggle, “You’re so sweet.” I reply, avoiding eye contact as butterflies begin to fill my stomach sending waves of nervousness through me.
“Can I kiss you?” He asks boldly and it takes me back by surprise although it shouldn’t. That’s the type of person he is, bold, confident and brave all in one.
“What?” I asked shocked.
“Can I kiss you?” Rolan repeats.
“This is crazy.” I say, “I just you’re, Rolan Clarke.”
“What does that mean?” Rolan asks as he lays beside me on the bed.
“Like how could I ever be with you. Like it’s crazy.” I say, “Like, it’s not that I don’t think I’m good enough, cause we both know I am.” I flick my hair as best I can whilst lying down making Rolan laugh.
He smiles, “I like it when you’re confident. It suits you.”
I smile back, placing a kiss on his cheek and then continue, “I just, I never thought we’d even meet for this opportunity to happen. Like we come from such different walks of life.”
Rolan pushes up, leaning on his elbow, regarding me strangely.
“What?” I ask, “What’s wrong?”
“Does it bother you that we come from such different lives.”
“Of course not,” I reply, “You’re a person, I’m a person, let’s make it a thing.”
“So is that a yes to my question?” Rolan asks, leaning forward ever so slightly. I nod, reciprocating his actions, leaning in and pressing my lips to his.
The kiss is sweet and slow. Warm tingles spread from where we touch all the way down my spine to the tips of my toes. My arms wrap around Rolan’s neck as he pulls me closer so that I am almost on top of him. Rolan slowly pulls away, lips instead finding refuge on the base of my neck. My breathing comes out as pants as his hands begin to trace the skin just beneath my bra.
“Rolan, Rolan.” The jingle of keys at the front door has me panicking, “We need to stop,” I whisper.
“I know, I know,” He says, pulling away, cheeks flushed red, lips looking slightly swollen.
“You need to get under the bed now.” I say quietly panic evident in my voice, before shouting, “Hey mum! How was work?”
“The usual, filing, faxing. The boring stuff.” She replies. “So Mae, what do you want for dinner?” I can hear as my mum climbs the stairs.
Rolan lays on the bed with is hands behind his head and I hurriedly shoo him underneath my bed. “Rolan. You need to go!” I whisper harshly. He shrugs and closes his eyes. “Come on, stop taking the piss, Rolan. ” I warn.
The door opens and my mum’s head pops round the corner, she smiles and asks, “You ok?”
“I can explain-”
“Explain what?” My mum asks, a look of bewilderment crossing her features. I turn to look at my bed, finding but a mere dent where Rolan’s body once lay.
“I can not explain... the craving I have for some...macaroni pie.” I smile wide, awkwardly wide.
“Oh, right.” My mum says, laughing though she stares at me with her brows furrowed in confusion. “I’ll get some macaroni on then?” Her words come out unsure, questioning my request of macaroni. My mum leaves promptly, probably having enough of my weirdness for one day.
I stoop down, looking underneath the bed and poking Rolan in the stomach. “Oi.” He says, rubbing his stomach
“You are going to be the death of me.”
“Aww, you love me really.” He replies.
“You need to stop playing around, Rolan.” I whisper, barely able to control my laughter, “You are going to get me in trouble.”
" I believe a little trouble is good for the soul.” He replies, lips curled into a smirk.
“Of course you would,” I say with a smile and a roll of my eyes, the two actions seeming to go hand in hand. “I’m going to go help my mum make dinner. Don’t make any noise whilst I’m gone, ok.”
“Of course not, babe.” He says with a wink.
I shake my head as I rise from my stooping position. I might just regret bringing that troublemaker into my life.
I hope you enjoyed this chapter because I loved writing it, especially Colton because he’s just salty all the time .
If you did enjoy the chapter, please vote, comment and Follow! It would be much appreciated!
The next chapter might be up on Sunday but if not definitely next week, Wednesday! Hope you all have a great day!