Living With The Boys (Journey to Love, #1)

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11. Arguments and Misunderstandings


Hope’s POV

At the end of this long day all I want is to go into our warm house and cuddle up on the couch or have a scorching hot shower. Going to Winter Wonderland as it turns out is very tiring but I would not trade it for anything. I spent the whole day laughing and taking pictures, then hours forgetting that we even have phones.

This has truly been a magical day, I feel so lucky to be where I am with Mike next to me. I am so lucky to have such amazing guys wanting to take me on dates and take care of me, it sounds quite vain but I can’t help but think that all the shit things that have happened in my life have built up all this good karma and these guys are here because of that.

There have been many moments where the bad moments have felt like they go on forever and nothing good is ever happening, that there is nothing good to look forward to. I have felt like that for years on end so having these amazing people in my life and feeling this happy is something very foreign to me, I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop yet I don’t know if it’s going to. This just all seems too good to be true.

However, how do you voice this to other people? How do you explain to them that you’re scared of being happy? Because when you’re happy, when you finally relax and start to enjoy life, it hurts that much more to have it all ripped away by someone or something.

I had gotten used to seeing my counselor at school before coming to university and these past 3 to 4 months have been my happiest yet but I miss having someone to really talk to. I can always confide in the guys or in Lily but it’s different when someone knows your past and knew you during your hardest periods, it’s different when you don’t have to describe your feelings because the other person felt them with you.

Since coming to university I have not signed up for the free counselling because I just thought that I should do this on my own. I didn’t want to start again, I was already doing that by moving to a whole different place and starting something completely new like university.

So far everything has paid off but I might have to once again start keeping a journal, you would be surprised how much some things start to make sense when you’re writing them down on paper. When you’re thinking about things they seem to go at the speed of light and it’s hard to focus on one thing as it feels like there are a million other things. Writing things out helps me to think more clearly and it somehow makes it more real when I see it in ink on paper.

Spacing out is something that I do quite often, more so when I’m tired and my head starts to wonder in a million different directions. So I’m not surprised when I closed my eyes for a second on the last bus home and then woke up at the bus stop with Mike gently shaking me awake. Of course he was gentle about it, like he is with everything else but I really started shaking off the sleep when we got nearer to the house.

Even though it’s a cold December night I can see what Mike meant this morning when he said good weather. There hasn’t been a lot of wind or any rain, just a little bit of snow and chilly winter weather, as perfect as it gets here in England.

“I could kill for a hot chocolate right now.” I complain as we turn the corner onto our road. The wind starting to pick up, as it is getting later and I just got off a warm bus which makes the outside feel ten times colder.

“Why didn’t you say so back at the station?” Asks Mike and of course he would remember that I turned down the hot drinks when we were waiting for the train. Truthfully I didn’t want him buying me anything else as today he spent quite a bit on me and I feel quite guilty. Turns out that Winter Wonderland is ridiculously expensive, but so damn worth it.

“We’re nearly home anyway, I can just makes us some there.” I answer but try to avoid answering his question straight on. Something must have been on my side as we got closer to the house, I could hear arguing coming from inside the house and something being slammed.

I turn to look at Mike with a clear question in my eyes, I have never really heard the guys argue very often if at all, they all seem to be very laid back guys and it takes quite a bit for them to get angry. But I am completely certain that the voices I hear from inside are Mark and Martin but I can’t tell what it is they’re arguing about.

Granted that as far as I know Martin has yet to tell the brothers about being bi and I don’t know whether that should be a big deal or not. I mean he should be able to date and love whoever he likes without having to explain himself or warn people in advance, I just don’t know if Mike and Mark would see it coming, or if they somehow already know.

“Do you know what’s going on?” Mike asks beside me as we stop at the start of the path leading into the house, the last we heard there was a massive slam and now everything is scarily quiet.

“No I have no idea, you don’t think it’s something serious do you?” I ask because I hate being around arguments, I hate watching them and I hate being a part of them. Something about not knowing how a person is going to react is very scary to me, just because I know that I would sometimes shout doesn’t mean the person I’m arguing with wouldn’t start throwing punches around.

“I haven’t heard Mark be this angry for a long time. I can’t even remember a time when I heard him shout like that, although he has been off these last couple of days.” He notes and I can see him trying to work out what’s going on with his brother, I guess we have all been very busy with our own stuff that we have kind of fallen behind on checking on other people.

“What do you mean he has been off these last couple of days?” I ask because I would hate for Martin to have told him and Mark to have reacted in an angry way. It could be something completely different but all my head can focus on right now is making sure that Martin is all right and praying that it has nothing to do with his news and that the guys simply have had a bad day.

“Just that he hasn’t been around as much and when he is, he’s just kind of silent. I just thought that he was overworking himself and didn’t think much of it. This still could be nothing don’t worry, sometime there is drama even when living with guys.” He jokes beside me and once again I am not sure whether he trying to make me feel better because I think he can see how much I hate arguments by the fact that we have been standing outside for a couple of minutes now.

“I’m sure you’re right, I mean we have all been under a lot of stress recently.” I agree even though I have a feeling that this is not just them being cranky and tired but it’s something more, call it a woman’s intuition.

“We should probably go inside now, people might start to think it’s a little weird how we’re waiting outside our own house.” Mike says beside me and I think he is getting a little worried about me, I feel like I have been frozen to this spot and it has nothing to do with the cold weather.

“That hot chocolate sounds really good about now.” I try to joke but I know that it’s going to fall flat, I just really want there to be nothing serious going on between Martin and Mark.

“I’ll do you one better and go buy some marshmallows.” He replies with a smile and just the amazing guy he is, he just turns around and starts walking to the nearest shop after he places a lingering kiss on my lips.

The little things that he does like that are just so cute beyond words, considering that just last week I finished the marshmallows by myself on the couch. Just the fact that he remembers that and is willing to go get them for me to make me feel better just makes me the luckiest girl on earth, he makes me feel so special.

With a new smile on my face I turn to walk into the house, there is no point in me standing outside the house freeing my ass off just because I don’t want to know what’s going on inside the house. I’m going to find out either way and I really don’t want Mike to come back and I’m still standing outside the house on the driveway like a crazy person.

Of course I know the house in unlocked but as soon as I was going to open the door, it swings open in front of me and Martin is standing there with a frown on his face. He never frowns. It was like he didn’t see me for the first couple of moments even though I am standing right there in front of me, he must really have something on his mind.

“Hey Hope.” He greets me but it lacks the Martin quality, his signature smile is missing and it seems like he is just plain sad all of a sudden, I am just not used to seeing him like this.

“Where are you off to?” I ask as I am still outside in the cold but he hasn’t moved out of the way but it’s clear as he is wearing his winter coat and a scarf that he is going somewhere. What’s weird is that he doesn’t look very happy to be going somewhere.

“I’m off on a date.” He says while finally meeting my eyes, I don’t know what he is expecting to see but my first reaction is to ask where he is going and with who as he doesn’t really seem all that excited to be going on a date, not like I was this morning.

“You don’t seem that excited about it.” I speak my mind because there’s no point in drawing circles around the issue and his foul mood.

“Well I was kind of excited before Mark fucking ruined my whole fucking night.” He throws an angry glare behind his back and his voice was louder than necessary, guess he wanted Mark to hear him but I don’t hear any reply so Mark must have back to his room or maybe he’s just plain ignoring him.

“You wanna talk about it?” I ask because what else could I really say? I have no idea what their argument was about and why Mark would have a problem with the date anyway; maybe he thinks I would be hurt by it?

“Not right now, I’m late for the date anyway.” He replies but I can no longer tell if he is sad or angry, I guess just in a plain old bad mood. He just goes to walk around me, without a simple hug or kiss on the cheek; he must really want to get away from the house.

“Mark?” I shout as soon as I close the door behind me and I know that Martin is away from the house, Mike is taking a while with the shopping but that gives me a little bit more time to find out what’s going on.

Guys complain about women gossiping and always talking but if you ask a guy what’s wrong, you will never hear the end of it. It’s a little sad how we just expect men to keep everything inside and be okay when talking is really such an underrated method of healing. I mean why are counselors so popular, it’s not because they’re magical but they help you sort through the rubble in your head.

As I take off the million layers I have on, I don’t hear a reply from upstairs where I was guessing he is. I am starting to get worried but there is also something about this that is a little but funny, if Mark is giving me the silent treatment.

I don’t call out again as I walk upstairs and to his room, where of course the door is closed. I knock because even though we are very close, sometimes you have to respect people’s privacy and its obvious now is one of those times.

It takes him a while to answer and I wasn’t even sure he was going to open the door but as I am staring at his angry face I don’t think he was expecting me at the door. Same as what Martin did downstairs, it takes him a couple of moments to focus on me, now I really want to know what they were arguing about.

“You guys back from London?” He asks even though it’s pretty obvious that we’re back if I’m here at his door. I guess men use some of the same tactics that women do, as right now he is trying to steer the conversation away from the elephant in the house.

I hear the door open downstairs and I’m going to guess that Mike is back from the shops, but as I see Marks eyes light up I know that the he’s closing the door on any type of talk we could have had. I hate it when things go unsaid as it just leads to more problems later on with tension building all the time.

“You mind me coming in to hang out for a little while?” I ask quickly as it’s the only excuse that I can think of here on the spot. It’s not even that out of the ordinary because I often hang out with the guys after I’m done with my day, I guess I have to accept that Mark doesn’t want to hangout with anyone right now, even me.

“I was going to have an early night because tomorrow I have an early shift.” He apologizes and this time it’s my turn to look a little confused because I could have sworn that for the past week he had been complaining not having a break at work and that he finally managed to get tomorrow off.

“I thought you managed to get tomorrow off?” I say but it comes out more of a question. I mean of course I could be wrong and have the wrong day but these last months I have prided myself in knowing their schedules as finding time is hard when they all work.

“They need me to cover for someone tomorrow last minute so I agreed to work some overtime.” He says and it sounds like a pretty good explanation. I just can’t help the feeling in my gut that is telling me that something big is going on right now. That could just be me overthinking everything and he could just need the extra money now that Christmas is coming up and there is lots of shopping to be done.

“Well then, you should get some rest.” I reply with a weak smile on my face, if there is nothing wrong or if he doesn’t want to talk about it right now there is nothing I can do. Pushing is only going to make things worse and I know how much it sucks to have someone pushing you when you just don’t want to talk, you snap angrily and then regret it moments later. At least I know I do.

“Goodnight, love.” He replies with his own little smile but at least he leans forward to place a kiss on my forehead. That small gesture of affection is enough to calm me down at least a little bit for now.

I make my way back downstairs as I don’t think I heard Mike come upstairs to check on Mark or go into our room for anything. I do find him in the kitchen making that hot chocolate we spent so much time talking about. Even though today has been one of the best days ever, it has once again kind of ended in a confusing way.

I don’t know if it is just me overthinking things and my anxiety or if something really is wrong. All I know is that I don’t have a good feeling about this and over time I have learned to trust my gut instinct when it is trying to tell me something.

“You think you might be able to talk to Mark tomorrow after work?” I ask in the kitchen quietly because if anyone is going to get something out of Mark it’s going to be his twin.

“I don’t have work tomorrow.” He replies with a confused look on his face, I guess Mark really did take a last minute shift and told no one.

“Mark too an extra shift tomorrow morning so could you try and talk to him after work?” I ask again and this time I guess clarify myself a little bit more.

“Sure, even though it’s a little weird he took a shift, he’s been looking forward to a day off for a long time.” Notes Mike and I’m glad that at least I haven’t imagined this part of the whole situation.

“There’s something off but he won’t talk to me, so you’re the best bet.” I say as I hold the warm cup in my hands, happy to be inside and warm after a while day in the freezing cold.

“If he wants to talk to me then he will, I’m not going to force him to.” He whines in that guy type of way when you ask them to do something remotely out of their way.

“Fine, but make sure you talk to him at some point.” I stress and he nods his head in the way that I know he just wants me to stop talking. I guess he doesn’t think anything major is going on, that’s just how it is when you’re living with three guys you sometimes feel like you’re over exaggerating everything.

At the end of the day I can’t really do much right now and I’m so tired anyway that I just want to go to bed. Whatever is the problem between Martin and Mark, it’s going to come out sometime and I can just hope it’s a little misunderstanding that will be over tomorrow.

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