Chapter 18: R is for Romance
Liam looked at me and shrugged, “What, I’m a guy stop telling me not to act li-oh wait, I mean,” He said coughing into his hand confusing the hell out of me, “What the fuck do you think you’re doing kissing my girlfriend!”
I recoiled, “Girlfriend?”
“Girlfriend?” Reed asked his hands tightening around me. I looked between them having a mini stare off.
“Violet, my little pooh bear, just because we have a fight doesn’t mean you go and jump the next ugly motherfucker with no muscles you see okay?”
“What the hell are you talking about?” I hissed as he grabbed my arm trying to pull me off. And suddenly I felt like the rope in tug of war as they grabbed an arm each.
“Let her go you’re hurting her,”
“I’m not the one dragging her!”
“She’s my girlfriend you ugly shave your damn beard,”
“At least I can grow something,”
“Hey my baby face gets all the girls, including this one,”
“Oh my god let go of me!” I snapped, even Charlie was too busy licking his damn paw to help me, that traitor.
The next thing I knew was ending up on the flood with my head hitting the coffee table, “Ouch!”
“Sorry, are you okay?”
“In our defense, you said to let go, aye man?” Liam said raising his hand for a high five and then dropped it when he saw my angry glare, “Oh right, I mean darling I need to speak with you,”
I got to my feet rubbing the back of my hand, “Yeah no I don-,” the words were caught in my mouth as he dragged my hand to the corridor and then into the guest room.
“Liam what the hell are you doing?” I snapped, I needed ice for my head.
“Okay, yes, I told you to get with him but I did not mean jump him tonight, geez you move fast,”
I narrowed my eyes slapping his shoulder as he made suggestive eye movements, “OUCH VIOLET!”
“I didn’t even hit you that hard! And he came over, not like I called him,”
“Still, that scene is R rated, you need to lock the damn doors for that shit,” I scoffed, that was hardly R Rated thank you very effing much. It was just a...kiss.
“Oh my gosh what if I didn’t rock up, you guys would be going at it on the couch,”
“Liam can you not,”
“Maybe I should have come in another ten,” I slapped his shoulder again to get him back into focus.
“No one is going at it, he kissed me okay. And what the hell are you doing? I thought you wanted me to give him a shot!”
Liam shrugged placing his hands into his pocket, “Um yes, but make him work for it, not like let him eat your face, which is gross, you have two baby innocent cats in the house, you need to set a nice example.”
Are you freaking kidding me?
He cleared his throat, “Anyways your my fake girlfriend now, my baby faux, gotta make him work for it, you following?”
“No, not really,” I said shaking my head. I was not following at all. This guy was more confusing than a Melway map, and those killed me.
He placed his hands on my shoulders shaking me, “What are you doing?”
“Knocking some sense into you, now the plan is-,”
“Do we really need plans and spoons? Like...fine I won’t kiss him and make him “work for it,” but like what the hell does that even mean,”
“You’re my girlfriend now, we gotta make him jealous,”
“No we don’t, that’s so high school, what the hell Liam,”
Liam pondered, “Oh yeah true,” and that was just unnecessary drama and there was no need for Reed to be...jealous. Besides, I was just going to still be mean to him, and of course slap him where I can.
“Fine, and see, I told you that dress was a genius idea,”
“But what a waste of an outfit, maybe I should like challenge him to a dual, wait no, he looks stronger than me. You never told me he was below average in the looks department, ugly,”
“Okay fine, hes more than average,” he huffed rolling his eyes, “But don’t let him take control of you, show that female power, be Vulan!”
“Who the fuck is Vulan,” I asked as I walked back to the lounge room, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was just gone. This was molto awkward and that’s where my Italian skills stopped. Wait, Molto did mean very right?
“You are Vulan, Mulan the Violet, so like Vul-never mind clearly we don’t have a Disney fan over here,” he said shaking his head and coming to a sudden stop I ran into his back. When did he start walking in front of me?
“I have come to the conclusion,” He announced and I stepped around him giving him a look and looked at Reed who was standing at the coffee table with narrowed eyes, “That we are breaking up,” Liam finished putting his hand over his heart and sighing.
“We were never together...“I pointed out, it was a date, but dates did not make anything official. Hell it wasn’t even a date, we were just meeting who ever was on the other side of the phone.
“Wow Vulan, seriously? I know that and you know that god you clearly never watched drama films did you?”
“I am so confused,” I said shaking my head.
“Let the lawyer speak and rest your poor small brain that has no knowledge in it,” ouch bastard. Maybe I should grab that wine bottle and hit him across the head.
“Like I was saying before I was rudely interrupted, we are breaking up to get married,”
“Okay fine! God you both are no fun, have her,”
I raised my hand slapping the palm against my forehead, that was it. I was going to bed.
“Wait, I’m going, where are my notes?”
“Over there,” I said pointing to the coffee table, “Wait goodnight kiss time,” and before I knew it something wet was on my mouth and I pushed him off, “Gross,”
“That hurt my feelings,”
“Liam I am going to castrate you with Charlie’s claws if you don’t fucking leave,” I said wiping my mouth, I think he just attacked my chin with drool. I need a shower. I needed ten showers.
“Rude Vulan, you just had to say, Liam, please leave my darling and I would have,” He said storming off to grab his notes, “I’ll call you later darling,”
“I’m switching my phone off,” I said.
“Rude,” He said turning at the door before storming off. Geez.
I turned around nearly forgetting about the quiet Reed who was just standing there, “You know you should go too,” I was in no mood to talk right now.
But of course men wanted to speak when you didn’t. It was like they did that on purpose. Man I just want to sleep. “Who was that? Wait, never mind. Come on a date with me,”
“Say what?” I said startled looking up. A date...like where we eat dates or like a date date. I didn’t realise I was still rubbing my mouth and dropped my arm, well, nice one Violet. My head still hurt.
“Give me a chance Violet, please, just one date, and if it’s bad you can never see me again after. I swear,”
Ooh, the chance to never see him again, sounded lovely, but the way my stomach flipped didn’t sound that lovely. Maybe I was getting food poisoning, it was the chicken, I shouldn’t have cooked chicken.
“Reed how about we talk abou-,”
And in seconds he was in front of me grabbing my hands, whoa, he moved fast, my head was spinning. “Just one date,”
I groaned, “Fine,”
What? No? What happened to not giving in. He smiled, and it caught me off guard. A full on smile and for a second I don’t think I’ve ever seen something so handsome as that. Okay this really isn’t “Being strong,” if you’re just going to stare at his mouth Violet. Get a grip.
It was like ice-cream, just tempting me.
I leaned back, no, what was I, the kissing booth tonight? Maybe I should charge them, make some money.
“Wait what?” I asked realising he was saying something.
“I’ll pick you up tomorrow afternoon at six, dress casual and to be warm,”
“Whoa, isn’t that like...soon?” I mean was he that eager.
“Lock your damn door,” He said letting go and walking towards it, and suddenly I missed the warmth. Wait no, you don’t need the warmth.
You were Vulan!
Huh, what? I looked up, “Lock your door,”
Oh right. I awkwardly walked up to the door closing it, one date, how bad can it be. Was this easy? Wait, this was a bad idea, a terrible idea.
“He said casual not a hobo grandmother,”
I frowned sitting up on the bed staring at the beast in my closet throwing everything he got his hands out onto the ground.
“You know you’re not invited, how did you even know about the date,”
Liam looked over his shoulder, “If you’re implying I stayed back and eavesdropped through the door, you are wrong,”
Um..okay? “Don’t you have classes?”
“Yes but I had to prepare you for your date, law school can wait,” I rolled my eyes flopping back onto the bed sighing. It was only five, I still had a whole hour. “Why can’t I just wear what I am wearing now?” I asked. What was so wrong with this?
Jeans were acceptable and he said dress warm so what better than a grey jumper...well it was a bit long and big and made me look like a penguin but like, I had to dress warm and this was the warmest item of clothing I had, I didn’t want to lag around a jacket.
“Because you look like a pigeon, literally,”
Rude. Pigeons could strut.
I sighed looking back at the ceiling, the last thing I expected was to be opening the door to Liam, man, surely my outfit wasn’t that bad. And if it was good, I could see if he was dating me for my or my look-oh wait, I had none.
“Go have a shower,”
“I already did Liam,”
“This morning, yeah I can smell your sweat from here, have a nice shower,”
I sat up taking a sniff, I smelt fine, and it wasn’t the morning, it was noon. I might hasve accidentally slept in. If you could even call is sleep, it was more me rolling around and one of the cats deciding to sit on my face, which wasn’t pleasant. All I could breathe was cat fur and hair sticking everywhere.
Deciding not to argue with him I grabbed the robe and towel he was holding out, where the hell did he even find that? I don’t ever remembering owning those and went to the bathroom. Maybe a warm shower would make the hurricane inside of my stomach calm down. It was weird, was I sick?
It wasn’t nerves, or was it? But I wasn’t ever this nervous for a “date” before. Wait, was I really dating the kid that made my high school hell. Granted he wasn’t anymore, I scoffed hanging up my things, he was definitely not a kid.
Stepping inside the shower I cringed at the cold water increasing the temperature, “Stupid Reed,” I muttered as I grabbed the body wash. Dress warm, where the hell was I going?
If he was going to take me to the movies, I was definitely going to fall asleep, movies just started losing their appeal to me as I grew older, they were just so long and bored and sitting through them were torture.
But wait, Liam Neeson was a babe, I wouldn’t mind a movie like his, action packed, maybe something more interesting. But then movies were such rip off, tickets were overprices and then so was the food. I would never waste that much money when you can just buy snacks and rent the DVD.
But movies wouldn’t require me to dress ‘warm’. And we never had any carnivals in this country so I could cross that out. Museum? I was going to fall asleep walking. I was interested in art and history, just not in museums.
Six was fairly late for a stroll in the woods, wait we don’t have any woods here. Or maybe we did. I switched the shower off hopping out immediatley grabbing the towel. I hated that after feel, the air going chilly and then feeling all humid and gross.
I wiped the fog of the mirror staring at my reflection frowning, damn, I needed to get my eyebrows done. I peered closer as my hands automatically opened the drawer out grabbing new contacts out. Why did I always forget to do my eyebrows.
Because you screw them up
Maintaing was hard. The struggled. I sighed popping new contacts in, the process coming to me efortlessly but years of practise would probably do that. I grabbed the robe throwing it on and trudging back out to where Liam was hovering over the bed thinking, tapping a finger on his chin.
“FInally, you take forever,”
I frowned, really now? I was only gone for twenty minutes. I jumped onto the bed sighing, “So what now?”
“Hey not on the clothes!”
“Sorry,” I rolled over onto my stomach raising an eyebrow when I saw him have about ten tops set out onto the bed.
“I own these?” I asked touching the fabric of the one closest to me, damn that was soft.
“Yes, they have the tags on them,”
But then most people were familiar with buying clothes and then never wearing them. Somehow they looked amazing in the store, and then at home they looked horrible. I frowned, maybe their mirrors lied, their mirrors made you look skinnier than you were.
“Are you sure you don’t want to wear a dress?”
I scoffed. “God no. Besides, he did say dress warm, so if you can get rid of all these tank tops, I can get a nice woolen jumper,” I said looking irritated at all the tops. I really didn’t want to expose so much arm skin, not with my flab.
“No hideous jumpers,”
“My jumpers are not hideous thank you very much,”
“Yes they are,”
“Maybe you should wear a bikini,”
I gave him a look.
He flicked something onto me and I sat up looking at it, “What is this?” but turning the soft cloth around in my hands answered my questions, a blazer. One of those fancy crop blazer, the only annoying thing was the colour, pink.
“I own this?” I asked slightly wrinkling my nose and then looking at the tag, are you serious. I spent seventy dollars on this?
“Wait a minute, this is old! It won’t...fit,” I said looking at the size, two sizes smaller than I was. Oh god.
“Just try it, here jeans,” something else flew into my face and I frowned.
At least they were black, I mean black was meant to be slimming wasn’t it. He also passed me a simple white shirt to wear inside.
“For someone who wanted me to wear a bikini ten seconds ago, this is like dressing like a nun,” I said judging the outfit.
“Do you want to wear a bikini,”
“God forbid,” anyone who sees me will lose their eye sight. For humanity I shall never wear anything like that. I sighed placing the things in my hands down. I mean it was casual, yet the blazer was fancy casual. This was something I would have worm to a nice birthday dinner.
Would, since this was’t me anymore. The confident teenager was gone. And pink....I wasn’t a fan of that colour. Never was so why the hell did I own it.
“Do you know what’s sexier than lingerie,”
I raised an eyebrow, “There is something sexier than lingerie?” well that news was new for me. I mean the price tag on half the lingerie items I would never wear was pretty much selling my phone for it. Not to mention if I wanted holes in my underwear I’ll just poke them, not pay a hundred for it.
“Naked people?” I said answering his question confused, like I mean what’s the next level after lingerie that barely covered anything,t he full nude.
“No, being fully clothes, but the right type of fully clothes,”
“Right because, showing no skin is sexy now,” oh I wish. I would win sexy all the time, but then he did say the right clothes. I did dress like a penguin, but a sexy penguin. Scratch that.
“Because you hint at what there is. There is nothing sexier than a girl wearing a long dress and then suddenly seeing half her leg when she lifts it up. Or a top raising to show midriff. Or-,”
Midriff, more like rolls of fat, “Why the hell would she be lifting her dress,”
“Can we not talk technically here, I’m just saying, if you wear it properly, you can work clothes,”
I groaned flopping back onto the bed throwing my arms up, “I am doomed,” I cannot dress sexy for my life. Exhibit A, me. The only exhibit you needed.
“That’s why I am your fairy godexboyfriendfakefiancee fine don’t look at me like that,”
I rolled my eyes looking back at the blazer.
“Ten bucks it doesn’t fit,” I mean, gambling was bad, but extra cash was good.
“You should open the door,” I said as Liam blocked my way looking at his watch.
“No, let him wait,” He said as he pocketed the ten dollars. I sighed rolling my eyes before walking back to the kitchen to fill the cat bowls up.
Right because waiting was so nice, and the doorbell went off again as I stroked Charlie’s head before he ducked between my feet.
“Much love,” I said as he sprang on Satan and tried biting her tail off. Maybe I should lock the cats up. In separate rooms.
“Reed! Welcome,” I looked up startled as Liam threw the door open, it banging against the wall and frowned. What happened to waiting?
“Violet hurry up, how rude making our guest wait,”
I walked over giving Liam a look, “Idiot,”
“You know you love me, now, I want her back by midnight, no funny business you too,” he gave my back a shove making me trip over and slammed the door shut behind me.
I swore rubbing my nose where it banged into Reed’s shoulder, “Are you okay?”
I grunted walking towards the elevator, pretty sure Liam had his ear stuck to the door, “I think he broke my nose,” I stabbed the button for the elevator and the doors opened immediatley since Reed probably just stepped out of it.
“Here let me look,” he said and suddenly his hand was on my shoulder spinning me around and the other on my nose, “Just red,”
“Ah...yeah,” I said taking a step back. “Wait, did you shave?” I asked noticing the smooth skin and also after shave, in the most non-creepy way I could muster.
The corner of his mouth lifted, “Maybe,”
Aww, but I liked the stubble. Not that shaven was bad, it was too good, and there was a slight itch in my hands that I wanted to run my fingers over it, see what it felt like. And thankfully the doors opened and I didn’t do it and creep him out.
“So where are we going?” I asked frowning to see it was a car and not his motorbike. Man I was hoping he would teach me to ride that.
Cue every male saying - It’s a surprise.
Okay cue not every male saying that.
I raised an eyebrow looking at the sky, I mean it wasn’t dark yet it wasn’t bright either, “A beach? Do you want to get strangled by a crab?” Reed smiled shaking his head as he opened the door to his car.
Right, chivalry. Whilst it was nice, at the same time it was slightly awkward, I pulled the small coffee coloured bag that contained my spare glasses and wallet in it getting in as fast as I could. I mean what did people think when they opened doors while they waited for you to get in.
Probably “Move it fat arse,” or something along those lines. I mean that must be awkward acting like a hotel door man, what were they called, concierge?
The rumble of the engine brought be back to earth and I realised he was already in the car pulling away from the kerb.
I mentally thought of all the beaches by a close range tapping my fingers on my knee. Do people still do small talk in cars? And if so, what does one talk about. And why was it suddenly strange being in a car with Reed, since when did silence become my greatest enemy.
I could hear everything, the change of the engine, the indicator blinking, the sound of the soft radio, air con blowing out of those weird ducts or whatever you called them and I was sure I could hear my heart panicking.
This was weird, beyond weird.
“So,” I said peeking at him from the side of my eyes, “Is that a new car freshener?”
Thankfully my horrible efforts of small talk didn’t have to go on for too long since we arrived at the destination soon and I had never been more happy to jump out of a car as soon as it stopped. Yet I wasn’t sure why I was hurrying, silence was here, whether it was the car or not.
As I looked around I realsied this wasn’t the beach, I mean it was, yet it was far away from the sandy dunes I was expecting, it was a pier.
I looked at Reed as he walked around the car, “What are we doing?”
“We are going for a yacht ride,”
“A yacht?” I asked surprised, well that caught me off guard. I was somewhat excited, I don’t think I’ve ever been on a yacht. I followed hit to the closed boat shed excitedly, where there were people already waiting.
Oh, company. I shifted on my feet as the two men spoke to Reed giving him man hugs which was a funny word, why didn’t we just call them hugs? Why man hugs?
This wasn’t the time for your philosophical moments Violet.
“Have fun mate, we set it up for you, pier 3,”
“Thanks Peter,” and the said Peter looked over Reeds shoulder giving me a nod. In which I gave him an awkward smile, because that was me, an awkward person.
“This way,” Reed called placing his arm on my lower back pushing me in a new direction and I tried not to flip at his hand. I could hear him saying something but my mind was more focused on the imprint that his hand was making through that stupid pink blazer and shirt.
It wasn’t till his hand was off me that my mind started working again and looking down at the yacht my mouth dried up, and suddenly I didn’t feel so safe.
“What? Are you afraid of water, if you are we can do something else I ca-,”
“No I don’t have a phobia, the boat just looks wobbly,” I said as I looked at it. Well no shit it was wobbly Violet, it was on water.
“It’s okay, it’s sturdy,” he said patting the edge, well it didn’t look sturdy as it bounced up and down. With a sigh I threw in my bag, I could take this ship on, or boat, the thing that floats on water.
It wasn’t massive like some of the other ones yet it wasn’t like the sailboat ones that looked ever more scary. I bet a big wave could knock those ones straight over. I sat on the edge of the pier and Reed raised an eyebrow, and so did I since I had no idea what the hell I was doing.
This plan looked much better in my mind.
“I got this,“I said even though no one really asked me, but I felt like I owed an explanation to why I was sitting on the pier with my legs on the boat trying to slide in gracefully.
I needed lessons on “How to get into a thing that floats on water,”
Pushing my hands of the ledge I realised I didn’t really thing this out, placing my legs on the edge only meant when I pushed off the pier, I pushed the boat further away and I screeched as the gap widened, that was it. I was going to fall.
I could hear Reeds laughter as he bowled over, “Do you mind helping and now cackling?” I asked as my hands started to protest against the distance and my body weight. Oh god, could I swim? Yes.
I was an expert swimmer, just not in deep endless oceans, I was going to drown.
Thankfully Reed stopped laughing and gave me a hand, pulling me into the boat and I caught my breathe leaning against the side, “Never doing that again,”
But of course I had to get out again. I shook my head as Reed untied the rope, oh there was a rope, shouldn’t climbed the rope like a monkey.
The boat was fairly small, or a yacht, hell the thing that floats. It had a few seats, maybe it was one of those fast speed boats. But why the hell did they call this a yacht? Or was I the only one calling it that?
“Want to drive?”
“Hell yea,” I got up from the soft leather cushion going under the slightly covered area to the wheel, okay now this looked complicated.
The boat was moving rather fast all of a sudden and he let go of the steering giving it to me, “Just steer,”
Just steer, that seemed easy. But as I moved it to the right the boat did a full circle and I squealed letting go, “Yeah no, you can drive,” I said patting his shoulder as he started laughing again. I was going to sit where I wasn’t going to easily fall over board, in the middle, on the ground.
I could hear the waves splashing against the side of the boat and I realised my love for land. Something stable, something that can’t kill you if you breathed it in. Water, was different, it was so volatile. And suddenly I realised I was going to get a phobia of the ocean. The pretty thing was the sunset I could see, but only the sky since I was on the ground and the sides of the boat blocked everything.
Reed looked over his shoulder and then did a double take, “Why are you sitting on the ground? There are seats,”
“I am well aware of the term seats thank you very much,” I nodded, “I don’t want to fall over-board,”
Reed smiled shaking his head, “Trust me, you won’t. You’re missing the sunset,”
Well I could see the sky darkening that was enough but then I was starting to feel a bit funny, I could feel the fact I was moving but I couldn’t see it. And that was the main reason people felt air sick, car sick or sea sick. It was the fact that the motion had to be seen with your eyes or else your body didn’t really know what was going on.
So with a groan I got up grabbing the side of the thing that floated on water and sat down hesitantly and realised this wasn’t that bad.
The thing that floated came to a slow stop and I looked up alarmed, “Don’t tell me that we ran out of petrol, or whatever this thing runs on,”
Reed chuckled, “Just relax, I stopped the engine,”
“Is that safe? Are we going to sink?”
“We’re fine,” He said seating beside me and leaning his hands against the back like he did this a million times, he probably did, “Look over there,”
I looked over to where he was pointing and sure enough this was worth nearly drowning for, the sunset. It was stunning, the colours ranged from a light peach to dark navy, streaks of red and purple in the sky making one wonder why those colours were mixed into the combination. I mean the sky was blue...right?
“It’s so pretty,”
And in this moment, the silence wasn’t so awkward.
But there was only so much time one could go without talking and also staring into black space. I mean it was great, I did that all the time when I wanted to avoide things but this was slightly different.
“I don’t think I know much about you, do I?” I asked leaning against the side as he steered the boat back, or wherever we were going.
He looked over to the side briefly, “What do you want to know?”
I shrugged, “I don’t know...I guess, I don’t know,” I shook my head, wasn’t he meant to tell me things, like what was I meant to ask him, “What did you do in school after I left? I mean like, anything major happen. I know one of the teacher got punched, that was on the news,” I smiled at that.
No one liked him anyways, the science teacher who couldn’t teach. Besides he loved to stick his nose into other people’s business and even if you were a teacher, students wouldn’t respect that.
Reed smiled, “Oh yeah, I remember that. He sued the school, and won,” man I should sue all my school for being so bad. For not teaching you properly. For taking so much in school fees and never getting out of it. Where did all that money go?
He shrugged, “Same old, I moved out a year later, my parents broke up, hence the change in the name,” he said looking over, “And I went to a private school after that,”
“Oh,” I said since I wasn’t exactly sure how I was meant to respond to that. Like was it a yay or a nay thing?
“Why did you move schools? It wasn’t cause of um, us was it?”
“Dad changed jobs,” I said shrugging, “And so we had to move with him.” Which I was used to. I mean being the youngest and fourth in the family majority always voted against me. Or more not against, just not in my favor, “What do you do?” I asked realising that I had not a clue what this man did.
Was probably a lawyer like the rest of his family, so I was beyond surprise when he spoke up and said, “Architect,”
The look that shone upon his face set it pretty clear that he loved what he did, “Serious?” I asked. Somehow I didn’t peg him as a person who designs buildings and bridges and of course other things.
“Shall I tell you a secret?”
I shrugged, I mean it wasn’t my secret to tell, he leaned over as far as he could without letting go of the steering wheel, I could smell his after shave again, “I wear glasses too,” and with a sly wink he moved back.
I wasn’t sure which part I was processing first, the fact he wore glasses or that wink of his. “W-what?” I asked trying to clear my sense which was fairly hard.
“Like all the time?”
“Just when I draw,”
And somehow a Reed leaning over a desk with a ruler in one hand and a pencil in the other with thick black frames was appealing. Extremely appealing, white shirt tucked into khaki pants to finish the architect look off, or maybe now I was just making things up.
I cleared my throat standing up straighter, “Right,” I nodded, now what do I need to say. But it seemed like the wind wanted to converse with us as well as it picked up and I looked up to see the sudden weather change, “Eh...is there like a hurricane or something?” I asked.
Please say no.
“Probably just a storm, we’ll make it back,”
Holy shit a storm.
And cue panic.
“Wait are the waves going to get bigger and shit?”
Reed looked over, “Well technically we’re on top of most of the waves so it shouldn’t effect us,” but the fact we were on top of massive waves was enough to send me into panic mode clutching the side of the boat, whatever I could get my hands on.
Stupid storm, why now? Wasn’t it that the tide would go in, that mean it was more water and less land and cue more panic.
“We’re going to die,”
“Violet just breathe,”
I looked at the water, it was dark, not completely dark since there was still an inch of sun left but from what I could see was enough to literally freak me off.
“Hey! Don’t lean over like that you’ll topple,”
Oh shit, I pulled back. Maybe I should just sit on the ground in the middle where I can’t see anything. I got up wobbling, “Don’t worry I’ve done this a million times,” he said just as I let go of the side. And there was this thing called bad luck, which loved to follow me.
The moment I let go he turned the boat, more like swerving, catching me off guard making me loose my foot and my vision blur as I toppled over.
I expected the water to be cold, insanely cold, so I was silently pleased when it wasn’t too cold, but once your head gets wet the water feels warm.
Okay I got this, wait why is he leaving, come back.
Wait, I was in water, water that was deep. And then I forgot every swimming lesson I had ever taken in my life, “Ah a wav-,” and the water tasted like crap.
Was I drinking fish urine? That was probably the last thought in my mind before I realised I had to hold my breathe and try not to drown.
What did they say in swimming lessons? Pretend you’re riding a bike, tread the damn water. But I was trying, it was just hard.
Crap I didn’t put out enough food for Charlie and Satan to eat. Okay my throat was burning. And now my lungs protested and everything started to hurt. Damn it Violet pretend you’re a mermaid, swim, swim to air. And it sort of worked, I mean my swimming lessons didn’t help but flicking my legs like a mermaid did bring me closer.
Taking a gulp of air and whatever else flew into my mouth, salt water most likely, the wave pushed my body away from my destination. Shit where was the damn boat? My eyes stung the most and I realised it was casue of my contact.
“Reed you arseh-,” more water entered my mouth, “-ole!,”
I can’t swim, I can’t swim, I was going to die. My baby cats wouldn’t know why I stopped visiting them.
Whoever said treading water and doggy paddle was easy and natural was a liar. It was like someone just placed a hand over your mouth stopping you from breathing, and it wasn’t more pain, it was more discomfort that killed you. The want to take another breathe but with one per cent air came ninty nine percent water.
I heard a splash, there it was, I was leaving. Come rain, take me. At least this time my room was somewhat clean, it was just clothes thanks to Liam.
“Violet what the hell are you doing,”
I am dying god, what the hell did you think?
I felt an arm around my waist holding me up and this time it was ninty nine percent air and one per cent water.
Wait, I was breathing.
And feeling the warmth of another body made me realise how cold I was as my teeth started chattering so I clung to the warmth like a monkey would clung to a tree.
“Here climb up,”
“Clim-mb what?” I asked realising the familiar after shave wasn’t god, it was Reed. I was going to say, why would you need to climb to heaven, or hell. The side of the boat had a small rope like ladder and I silently groaned, excercise.
Damn it Violet get a grip, you’re alive.
“S...st...stop ss...sta...ring at myy bu...t...t,”
“I’m not woman!”
“L...lies,” I said as I grabbed the side, even the rope was wobbly and I sat on the ground not wanting to ruin the cream seats. Reed climbed over much more easier pulling the rope ladder back and lifting up the seat, something I didn’t realise you could do.
“What the hell were you doing?” he said throwing something at me.
Oh fluffy! I wrapped the towel around me huddling my knees to my chest, “Going for a swim ya know, it’s my favourite thing to do,” I said irritated, “What do you think? I fell,”
“I told you not to lean over like that!”
I clenched my teeth trying to stop them from chattering so much, wasn’t he cold, “No it was cause you can’t drive,”
“And you’re just there like you were meditating or something, don’t you know you’re meant to tread water?”
“Excuse me, I was panicking on the inside alright and treading water is hard,”
“Didn’t look like it,” he said frustrated running a hand through his hair sighing exasperate, with the other hand on his hip. Jesus, what got his panties into a twist. Was he clenching his jaw because he was cold as well or was he just angry, hell he had no right to be angry.
It was his shitty driving skills.
“Are you cold?”
“No, I feel so warm, I feel like I’m in a sauna,”
He pursed his lips, “And of course your sarcasm prevails,” he said walking over, he lowered him self beside me wrapping an arm pulling me towards him.
“Go away I don’t want your cooties,” I muttered, but the rest of me was traitorous leaning into his heat. The lack of rumble and vibration from the boat made me realise he had switched the engine off, but this time there was no sun to watch.
“Are you warm?”
“No,” The chattering stopped but I felt like I was sitting in a fridge for the past day. I sneezed pulling away, the most masculine sneeze I could muster, “You got me sick,”
“You’re the one who wanted to go for a swim,”
“Stop being mean to the sick and take me home,” I nudged him. It wasn’t very nice picking on sick people.
“Fine,” he muttered getting up and I frowned, wait, don’t take my warmth as well. But then I just wanted to get out of these wet clothes that were sticking to me. This time when the boat swerved I was thankfully only being shoved against seats, it felt like forever before we stopped and I got to my feet holding the blanket tighter.
“Where’s my bag?”
“Here,” he said picking it up and handing it to me, “Thanks,” I muttered as I watched him tie up the boat before jumping out and holding out a hand.
“There you guys were, we were going to send out a search party for you if you weren’t back by-whoa what happened?” Peter asked as he spotted me and I gave him a wave of my frozen fingers.
“She went for a swim,”
“He pushed me over,”
“I did not,”
“Alex, that’s not nice,” Peter said looking shocked as Reed threw the keys at him, “I didn’t push her,” he snapped grabbing my arm and pulling me, “Come on,”
Kill joy, I looked over my shoulder, “He tried to kill me,”
“She’s joking, lock up Pete,” he said pulling me my legs struggling to keep up, and the blanket wrapping itself around my feet making it harder, “Stop saying that! Someone might actually think I tried to kill you,”
“Chillax, I’m sure Peter Pan didn’t think that,” I said looking around, “Isn’t the car that way?”
“I live here,”
“Ooh someone’s got low morals on a first date,” I nudged his side.
“Not funny, I’ll drop you off after you warm up,”
“Yeah, yeah what-whoa, is that your house?” I asked as he let go of me to take out his keys and then wrap another arm again, but my mind was on the wood construction, modern with glass and timber.
“Did you design it?”
“Something like that,”
His door didn’t need a lot of kicking to open which was a good sign as I entered inside, he switched the lights on and bright orange tinted down lights lit up the corridor. It was sleek.
I stepped inside no doubt leaving a puddle on the ground as I looked at the pictures on the walls. Man his house seemed more decorated than mine and this was just the corridor.
“Come on,” I followed him inside, he threw the keys onto the kitchen bench that was the first thing on your left and then the lounge room and dinning was spacious. To the right was a staircase that was made from timber with a glass side which made it look like the stairs were just floating. I just hoped there was glass so someone’s leg wouldn’t slip through the side.
“Can’t people see you if they walk this way?” I asked. It wasn’t exactly on the beach yet it still had sand within a metre’s distance, a small footpath that must be always covered in sand. Man that would be slightly annoying.
“It’s a one way window,”
Oh that makes sense, I mean you can still have privacy. I looked around at the paintings on the walls “Do you paint?”
“My sister does, here,” he said and I realised he had clothes in his hands and I raised an eyebrow.
“Flannel pajamas?” I smiled taking the light green pajamas from his hands.
“My sister got them,” he said his cheeks a slight red tint as he cleared his throat.
“Aha, sure she did,” I said, it was slightly cute that he wore actual pajamas. Man my pjs were anything that I could find.
“The shower is upstairs to your right, it says bathroom, if you want to have one, and I can wash your clothes and dry them,”
“Aw what a perfect housewife,”
“Violet,” he said narrowing his eyes and I dropped my bag onto the coffee table untangling the blanket.
“Whatever I’m going, it was a joke, ya know, laugh,” I said as he took the blanket from me, “Sorry about the puddl-,” wait whyw as I apologising, he was making his own puddles. Wasn’t he going to have a shower?
Ladies first, right.
“What? Do I have a jelly fish on me or something?” I asked looking down realising he was staring at me his cheeks and the nape of his neck going red again.
He cleared his throat, “No you’re fine,”
“O..kay?” I asked slightly as I turned around looking over my shoulder as he muttered something to his self walking the opposite way.
The bathroom did in fact have a sign saying bathroom, a little door sign that was cute and beach themed. I pushed it open realising how clean it was, man even my bathroom was messy, the mirror itself was sparkling. Mine had spots on it and dry streak marks.
I looked around the bathroom being the paranoid person I was whenever I used someone else’s, there weren’t any cameras around were there. After a thorough check of all corners, draws and behind the mirror that slides to reveal after shave products and other stuff I switched the shower on closing the shower door as I took off my jacket and paused catching my reflection in the mirror.
Stupid shirt, I pulled at the garment sticking to me, why did I have to wear a white shirt. White was bad, no matter where you were going. If it gets wet, it gets see-through or you ended up staining it with food marks.
Seeing the red underneath my shirt made me pause, remembering Reed go red and I narrowed my eyes.
“Oh that arse-wipe,”