Silently Falling

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*Chapter Twenty-Three•

HIS LIPS WERE so soft and warm and I froze. Nick immediately pulled back.

"I'm so so sorry," he apologised. "Alex-"

I don't know what I was thinking, heck I don't think I was thinking at all. I cut him off by placing my lips on his and kissing him. He froze as well but soon began kissing me back. I didn't know what to do or how to move my lips but he seemed to know what he was doing as I let him lead the way. For whatever reason, my hands instinctly found themselves in his silky black hair.

He pulled back and placed his forehead on mine. "You have no idea how long I've wanted to do that," he said breathlessly.

"And how long is that?" I asked breathless as well.

"Three weeks ago," he replied. "If someone told me I'd be here kissing you, I'd have laughed at them and dismissed them as being delusional."

"Why?"

"When I first met you five weeks ago, I actually didn't quite like you because you reminded me so much of someone I lost. And each time I saw you, I'd feel a sharp pain in my heart," he answered as he closed his eyes and took a deep breathe.

I didn't know how to react to that revelation so I decided to change the topic instead.

"Who are those two girls in the portrait?" I asked pointing to the portrait which I undoubtedly knew Jake painted.

"The one with the dark hair is Kayla and the one with the brown hair is Hayley," he stated.

The girl with the dark hair looked a lot like Nick, from the way her eyes gleamed to her hair. The name Hayley sounded an awful lot familiar but I didn't quit know where I heard it.

Seeming to read my mind, Nick answered my burning question.

"Kayla was my sister but she passed away last year. Both of them did anyway," he said as his eyes glazed over with hurt and anger.

"I'm sorry, I shouldn't have brought it up," I said.

"It's okay," he replied. "It's like each time we are alone we always talk about the most saddest depressing things. Are we going to be that kind of couple?" he joked.

"Okay, tell me something about yourself that doesn't involve school."

I racked my brain for what to say but found nothing. "There's nothing," I replied with a careless shrug.

"Hell no, there must be something. Anything that makes the infamous Alexis Vance tick or happy."

'Oh hey Nick, I'm sick and I don't know how long I've got to live' isn't exactly something that you go around telling people.

"I have an older brother who is in University, I hate heights as already stated earlier, I only had one friend until you guys came into the picture. I love reading, I don't have a favourite colour, I hate strawberries and my middle name is Erin," I answered instead.

"You hate strawberries? Why? Aren't they like in every teenage girl's fantasies?" he asked smugly. "You know, chocolate covered strawberries with the guy of your dreams."

"No! They seriously disgust me to no end," I cringed but I couldn't help but smile at what he had said.

"Okay! but Erin really? Did your parents really hate you that much?"

"Probably. But use it once and you're dead to me," I deadpanned and I was only half seriously about it.

"Gotcha!" he raised his hands. "What do you want to study in University?" he asked instead.

"I'm not quite sure yet, I've got a few ideas in mind such as Astronomy, Biochemistry, Computer Science, Microbiology and Physics," I replied. "What about you?"

"Criminal law," he said in a heartbeat.

"Why?"

"That's a story for another time."

"All right. Favourite book?"

"Stephen King's 'IT'. Yours?"

"Veronica Roth's 'Divergent trilogy'."

"Figured," he stated matter-of-fact. "You do look like a Four fangirl," he said psychoanalysing me.

My mouth hang open at what he just said. "How do you know?"

"You wrote his name all over your Math notebook."

"Oh!"

I didn't realise I wrote his name all over my notebook and now I've got to check all my other books to make sure I didn't do it to them as well.

"If you could have lunch with anyone: dead or alive, who would it be, why? and where?" I asked.

"That's easy really, it would be you because why not and Paris at the Eiffel Tower," he replied with a straight face.

I burst out laughing at his ridiculous answer, "for someone who is intelligent, you sure are dumb."

"I've got to be honest with myself," he replied with a smirk and a wink and my heart swelled.

-----☆-----

This might sound biased but my date with Nick was one of the best things I've ever done in my life. Considering it was the only date, but still.

"Why are you smiling like a lunatic?" Asher asked poking my cheek.

It was a Sunday, the day after the decathlon and Asher showed up unannounced at my house at six o'clock to 'hangout' as he put it. He dragged me out of bed and to his house where we'd spent the day. I didn't even have time to change out of my pajamas.

"I'm not smiling like a lunatic," I replied still smiling.

"Yes you are, you've been smiling like crazy since we got here," he said, "does it have to do with why you left the arena early and didn't tell anyone?"

"Maybe."

"Aw c'mon Al, I'm your best friend and I deserve to know everything," he said pouting.

"No you don't need to know everything," I stated.

"But I tell you everything," he whined.

"Because you don't know how to shut up nor do you have a filter," I deadpanned.

"Pleeeease?"

I sighed and gave in, "Nick and I went on a date and then we kissed. End of story," I said quickly.

"Hold up, I want details. Now spill before I call your mum," he said.

"You wouldn't."

"Oh trust me, I would and I will if you don't tell me what I want to hear."

"I can't believe you're blackmailing me," I said flairing my hands in exasperation. "You're evil."

Asher plopped on his bed and patted the spot next to him, "start talking Al."

I sat on his bed and told him everything that had happened from when the decathlon started to when it ended and everything in between. Asher was quietly listening as he looked at me strangely.

"Well?" I asked after I finished retelling everything to him.

"Woah!" he breathed, "I just..... woah okay so that's pretty much a lot to take in."

I sighed, "okay so what now? Are we like dating or something because honestly it's my first time."

"Oh my gosh you just had your first kiss," Ash cooed as he pinched my cheek, "my little Alexis is all grown up and I'm totally telling your mum," he said as he wiped a fake tear away.

"You can't do that," I stated as I batted his hand away.

Asher groaned from beside me and smacked a pillow on my face, "you're no fun," he whined.

I rolled my eyes at his childish behavior. "Quit being so over dramatic,"

"And I don't know, you should probably ask him where you guys stand after that. Because I sure as hell would make you my girlfriend," Ash answered my previous question.

"But what if it meant nothing to him and I really like him?"

"Then James and I will find him and what we will do to him is up to the imagination, so dream big princess."

I laughed, "did you just quote Disney?" I asked cocking my head to the side, "you and James barely get along and all you want to do is kill each other when together."

Asher shoved my shoulder playfully, "it's not that we want to kill each other, it's just that I really want to murder him. But other than that, we're good."

"Whatever you say Daniels."

"Now you're questioning me? I am deeply offended Miss. Vance."

"And I should care because?"

"Because I'm your best friend and you totally love me."

"Uh-huh,"

"What? You can't be serious right now," Asher said all too seriously but there was a ghost of a smile. "Take it back or you will deeply regret it."

"Yeah right, we all know that threat is meaningless," I said rolling my eyes.

"Or is it now?" he said inching closer to me.

"Yeah pretty much what I just said."

Asher moved quick and soon he had me pinned on the bed under him and he began tickling my sides. I burst into laughter as he continued assaulting me.

"Stop," I said in between laughs.

"Not until you say you love me Alexis Erin Vance," he replied as he continued his assault.

The door to his room flew open then, "Asher you mum sai-" Steph stopped mid-sentence and stared at us with her arms crossed over her chest. "Care to explain what is going on here ?" she asked taking in our very compromising position.

Asher was still on top of me and I shoved him off of me.

"Hey!" I said as the laughter died down.

"Asher I asked a question," she said glaring at me, "I thought we were supposed to spend Sunday together."

Asher walked up to her and held her by the waist. "I totally forgot but we can still spend it together, all three of us," he said as he leaned his head to peck her lips and I immediately looked away.

"Umm I'll be going," I said as I hastily stood up and walked toward the door, "I'll see you at school."

"Wait! no don't go," Ash called. .

"You guys have a pleasant day."

I made my way downstairs where Asher's parents were cuddled on the couch.

"Hey Henry and Riley!"

"Hey honey you're leaving already?" Riley asked looking over at me.

"Yes," I replied, "I need to prepare for school tomorrow."

Riley walked up to me and pulled me in a hug. "Why don't you spend the night like old times and I'll call your mum to drop your books and some fresh clothes," she said. "it's being so long since I last saw you."

"All right Riley, I'll just go up and tell Ash."

I dashed upstairs to Asher's room and swung the door open, "Ash guess wh-" I quickly spung around and covered my face with my hands. "Oh gosh I'm so so sorry," I apologised.

Steph and Asher were both half naked on his bed and the imagine of that would probably scar me for life like the one with James' half naked friend.

"What are you doing here?" Steph snarled.

"Um.....I just wanted to tell Asher that I was spending the night," I said not once facing them.

"What?" she exclaimed just as Asher said"finally".

"Yeah.....um your mum asked if I could stay over and I said yes," I said and dashed back downstairs.

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