The Girl In The Candy Dress

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Chapter 15: Earthquakes

The anticipation is killing me, I have had enough.

We have been waiting for almost three hours and not one word from the doctors about Nathan. The news from Luke replayed in my head, over and over again.

“So, what do you do then?”
“Sell them”

I shake my head to myself, trying to force the conversation out of my mind. The pain from my head then moved to my stomach when I heard an earthquake rumble. Luke’s eyes dart towards me and he lifts his eyebrows in humour.

“You hungry, sweet cheeks?” he asks, trying to lighten up the mood. However, I can’t bring myself to look at him. I know it’s wrong, but I psychically could not make eye contact.

Instead of answering I heavily sigh and stand up and walk to Amelia whose eyes are puffy and cheeks are stained red from all the crying. “I’m going to go get something to eat, you want anything?”

She shakes her head, “No, I’m fine” she lifts her head to look up and me a wearily smiles, “thanks”.

I pick up my stuff and begin to walk out the door, I hear footsteps trailing behind and without looking I know it is Luke. “Zoe! Wait up”, he catches up and walks normal pace beside me down the street.

“Listen I know you’re mad-“

“Mad?” I cut him off and turn to him. “Luke…I’m not mad at you. I’m just really upset. What you are doing, selling drugs and stuff is all your business. But that doesn’t mean I am comfortable with it or approve. I’m not your mother, so I’m not going tell you what you should and should not do. Just don’t be around me when it’s happening”.

That ladies and gentlemen is what I call Zero Chill.

I continue walking down the street to get to Ben’s Burgers but I was stopped again by Luke. “I didn’t mean for you to find out like this”

“How else was I supposed to find out?” I pause and look at him for a minute, “Were you…even going to tell me?”
knew I rushed into this too soon. I knew he wasn’t right for me. I knew this was all too good to be true.

“Zoe…I am so sorry”

“Just stop, this isn’t going to work”

His eyebrows furrowed in confusion, “what do you
mean ‘this isn’t going to work’?”

I rub my hands over my face in frustration and stop walking to face him, “what I mean is that you and I are complete opposites! I like reading and museums, and you like parties and…bad stuff. I don’t know. What I’m saying is that people like us don’t work out! Think about it, when have we NOT had an argument, or a disagreement about something!” I was getting riled up. “We rushed into this without thinking, heck we haven’t even kissed yet!” Oh no, that wasn’t supposed to leave my mouth.

I don’t want things to be like this, I really do like him! And the way he is looking at me right now makes me feel like the worst person on earth. It’s like watching a puppy wimper.

Get a grip Zoe!

Luke just stares at me with complete shock at my words. There was silence for what felt like minutes, until he broke it, “Well…I’m sorry you feel that way” he stuffs his hands into the pockets of his jeans. “But I’m going to have to disagree with you”.

My eyes widen at his answer, but before I could say anything Luke continues, “The thing is, when two people like each other they will do anything to be together. They wouldn’t care what others think of them and they will just do what couples love to do. But the make or break situation comes down to who is willing to sacrifice to keep the relationship going. Even if it completely goes against everything that person lives for. Because if you are truly crazy about someone, you would want to break the rules…for them”. He takes a step closer to me and locks his eyes with mine, his beautiful ocean deep eyes. “Let’s be honest, I’m crazy about you and if it means to be together I have to get out of the business, then so be it. I just want you to have complete faith”.

And without another word, Luke Hardens cups my face and places his lips on mine.

Forget fireworks, there were shattering earthquakes when we connected, volcanoes erupted in my stomach and his touch sent tingles through my body. He pulled away leaving me breathless and completely dazed.

So what do I say after something as amazing as that? “Oh shit, I think I bit your lip”

He chuckles and shakes his head, I just mentally face palm myself for being so idiotic.

“We began on a rocky start” Luke says, “So in that case…Hi, I’m Luke”.

I smile at him, taking in such beauty in front of me. He continues, “I like partying and I have done some bad stuff. The girl I care for got her car crushed by me, I am moody and I’ve been labelled a so called ‘bad boy’. However, with the help of a girl named Zoe, I was able to see the world differently, even if it was just for a month. Also, her car is about to undergo some serious mechanic service”. I laugh at the last part and really absorb what he is saying to me.

“Why are you speaking in past tense?” I ask, “You’re a good person Luke, it’s just no one sees it. Thank you for letting me see it. Thank you for taking me on adventures and for sticking up for me. Thank you for being the only person confident enough to have a proper conversation with my mum. I want to help you right your wrongs. That’s what teams do, right? I want to help you get out of this mess. Maybe after my car is repaired…”

He laughs heavenly and holds me by the shoulders, “No worries, but right now you need some food because your stomach has been rumbling the entire time”. My cheeks go completely red as he chuckles and we continue to walk to the burger shop.

After buying our burgers and eating, we head back to the hospital making sure that we don’t leave Amelia alone too long. With a full stomach and a doughnut in my hand for Amelia, we walk back into the waiting room where we find her in the same crouched position. I place the sweet treat beside her, not saying a word. She didn’t want to speak, and that was completely fine.

It had almost hit the four hour point when a female doctor walked towards us. “Hello, are you Nate Richman’s family?”

Immediately, all three of us stand up and pay attention to the doctor. “Yes” I reply.

“I am Dr Hayley Martins, I just operated on your friend. He is in a stable condition. He is very lucky to be alive. You may see him in ten minutes, although he is not awake from his coma. Please be patient” she instructs.

The stress marks are released from Amelia’s face and she looks very much relieved. “I have to go to the bathroom, I’ll be back soon” she says and turns to walk towards the ladies bathroom.

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