Troubled Sincerity

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Chapter 11 | How It Should Be

| Mark’s POV |

I thought that after our little make out session yesterday, things would finally start to happen for us.

Instead, Naveah has been avoiding me like the plague.

I don’t know what her problem is, who cares if we both fucked other people prior to our reunion? I certainly don’t give one single fuck. The only thing I care about is that I have Naveah and she has me.

So why won’t she just let us be? Why does she continuously make our relationship complicated?

I glaring at my food as I sit in the cafeteria.

“Trouble in paradise?” I look up at the familiar blonde.

“There actually needs to be a paradise for there to be any trouble.” I mumble.

“I know you think she’s just trying to push you away, but you need to let her figure things out before you give up on her again.”

“What the hell am I supposed to do Lucy? Sit and twiddle my thumbs until she’s ready?”

“I mean, yeah.” Lucy deadpans.

I roll my eyes. “I don’t think I can do that. I’ve already waited this long to actually be with her. I mean there is literally nothing standing in the way and she still isn’t sure. I don’t think she actually loves me at all.”

Suddenly my eyes widen at my confession.

“Are you saying you love her?” Lucy grins.

“I’m saying, I feel like she just doesn’t know what she wants, and I can’t sit around forever waiting for her to figure shit out.” I sigh.

Lucy watches me as I run my fingers through my messy dark hair.

“Listen, I know Naveah like the back of my hand, and so do you. Sure, it hurt a lot when you rejected me and when I found out about you and Naveah, but I’d be lying if I said she didn’t feel the same way about you. I see it when I look at her looking at you. I see it when she talks about you. She might kill me if she finds out I ever told you this, but I know for a fact that she loves you just as much as you love her.”

I stare at Lucy, fully taking in everything she’s saying to me. She’s right.

I need to have a little more faith in Naveah. Giving up so easily before, is what almost cost me my life, and I’ll be damned if I make that same mistake again. This is our second chance, and I don’t intend on fucking it up.

“Thank you Luc, and again, I’m sorry about all the drama last year. I never meant to hurt you.” I frown at her, but she only smiles back at me.

“Don’t worry about it, it’s in the past. I’m completely over it. Besides, I’ve been hanging out with a few different people, so I’ve got options.” She smirks playfully.

“What about Dean?” I find myself asking.

“Oh, well, he said he wanted us to see other people.” Lucy brings her gaze to the table. “We decided it was best due to the distance between us.”

“I’m sorry to hear that.” I frown again.

“Don’t be, it is what it is. Always more fish in the sea!” She cheers happily. “Well, except for you and Naveah. You two are serious goals.” She nods matter-of-factly.

“I hope you’re right.” I chuckle.

“Don’t even sweat it. If you want, I can go talk to Naveah right now. I know she’s home because she doesn’t have any classes today, and I just finished my only class for the day.”

I nodded. “Thanks Luc, for everything. You’re a pretty amazing friend.”

Lucy beams at me and gets up to hug me. I hug her back and watch as she leaves.

I hope that she can talk some sense into Naveah.

We only shared a few kisses yesterday, and I already crave to have more.

| Naveah’s POV |

I’m dancing around the apartment, cleaning away, when I hear the front door open.

“Naveah?” I hear Lucy shout.

“Back here!” I yell from her bedroom.

“Why are you in my room and why are you in your underwear?” Lucy eyes me skeptically.

“Just cleaning. A thank you would have sufficed.” I smirk over my shoulder.

“Pants would also suffice.” She deadpans.

I roll my eyes as I finish wiping down the last of Lucy’s furniture. I walk over to her dresser and open up the top drawer, pulling out a pair of soft shorts.

“I didn’t mean wear my clothes!” Lucy sighs dramatically.

“Oh hush. What’s up?” I laugh as we both leave her bedroom and walk into the kitchen.

“I saw you know who today.” She smirks and my heart immediately stops.

“If you only came here to talk about Mark, you can leave.” I say as I grab a water bottle from the fridge.

“I live here dummy, you can’t kick me out.” She rolls her eyes. “Besides, we need to talk about this. You can’t keep ignoring him. He’s really upset about you not talking to him after yesterday.”

My eyes widen. Mark, upset?

“How do you know?” I eye her.

“Well, I was sitting right in front of his frowning face.” She deadpans. “Also he told me himself he doesn’t know why you’re shutting him out again. It honestly doesn’t make sense to any of us.”

I let out a huff before leaving the kitchen to walk into the now spotless living room.

Lucy of course, follows me.

We both sit on the couch and I can feel Lucy’s eyes burning a hole through the side of my face.

I turn to look at her, tears now in my eyes.

“I don’t know what’s wrong with me! He’s right there. He’s ready for this. There’s nothing stopping us and yet here I am, hiding in our apartment cleaning.” I ramble.

“You’re scared Naveah. It’s normal. You and Mark were never officially a couple, so this is still new regardless of how long you’ve known each other. It’s okay to be scared, but you shouldn’t shut him out and make yourself miserable just because of a little fear.” Lucy says gently.

I nod at her, because she’s right.

“I just don’t want this to go badly. I don’t want a repeat of last year.” I sigh.

“Well you’ll never know anything if you don’t just try.” Lucy pushes. “You should go see him.”

“I think I will.” I stand up.

“Um, you should probably shower first, oh and change.” Lucy smiles sheepishly.

I look down and notice I’m still covered in sweat from cleaning, and I know for a fact my hair is a complete mess.

“Right.” I nod again, heading for the hallway.

“Oh and Luc?” I gain her attention as she looks back at me.

“Thanks.” I smile warmly, to which she returns it.

After my long shower and throwing on some decent clothes, I grab my keys and head outside.

The drive to campus is short, so once I park the car, I get out and head for Mark’s dorm room.

It’s getting late and pretty soon no girls will be allowed in the boys dorm area. I need to hurry.

“Hey Naveah, you looking for Mark?” I turn my head to see Jessica smiling wide at me.

“Uh, yeah actually.” I decide to reply. Things are tense between us and I can feel it.

“He’s at work tonight.”


“Alright, thanks.” I send her a smile, but she doesn’t return it. She only nods.

I leave campus again, heading for Ashlynn’s. It takes me a while to get there, due to traffic, but once I do I hurry out of the car and rush inside.

“How many?” The host asks with a smile as soon as I make it inside.

“Oh I’m not here to eat. I’m actually looking for one of your servers, Mark?” I quickly ask the older woman.

She peers down at the host stand and checks a few pieces of paper before frowning at me.

“He’s not on the schedule for tonight, sorry.”

My eyes widen. Jessica lied to my face.

“Thanks.” I glare before turning around and leaving the restaurant.

Once I make it back inside my car, I sigh in defeat. By the time I make it back to campus, the male dorm rooms will be closed off to all girls.

I reach for my phone and dial Mark’s number.


“Mark!” I blurt out in a rush.

“What’s going on?”

“I tried to come and see you, but Jessica said you were at work, so I came here but you’re not here.” I’m rambling, while simultaneously trying to catch my breath.

“Naveah relax. You can’t come to my dorm, but I can come to you. I’ll meet you back at your apartment.” He says soothingly.

“Okay, great!”

I don’t give him time to response, before I hang up and pull out of the parking lot.

It takes me forever to get back home, but when I do, I see Mark’s car sitting in the driveway.

I can’t stand this feeling anymore. I need to get over my fears and just let us be.

Forgetting about my rage toward Jessica, I get out of the car and rush to Mark. He’s leaning against his car when I launch myself into his open arms.

“I’m so sorry!” I say into his chest as he tightly wraps his arms around me, afraid if he doesn’t I’ll disappear again.

“I shouldn’t have ignored you all day, I’m just-“, but he doesn’t let me finish before he’s pulling me in for a kiss.

My entire body is on fire, but I don’t pull away, not this time.

I want him now more than I ever have, and that itself terrifies me. This man does something to me that nobody else ever has before. I can’t even put it into words how he makes me feel.

After a while, we pull apart and Mark rests his forehead against mine.

“You don’t need to apologize. I understand. You’re scared. I’m scared too Nave.” He whispers to me.

“I just don’t ever want to feel how I felt all summer. Sure I put on a happy face, and yeah I spent time with another guy, but inside I felt completely dead.” I explain suddenly.

Mark nods at this, as if he completely understands.

“That’s exactly how I’ve felt. Even with Jessica.” He mumbles.

A sting of anger courses through me at the mention of her name, and I make a mental note to confront her tomorrow for lying to me about Mark.

“The truth is nobody is ever going to make me feel the way that you do. You make me feel so alive. I can’t even express it completely.” I say against his chest, sighing in content as he softy strokes my hair.

“Believe me; I know exactly what you mean.”

I look up into his smiling eyes and can’t help the smile that appears on my own face.

Suddenly my brain turns to mush and I finally say the three words I’ve been dying to say since last year.

“I love you.”

Mark looks at me with such intensity, such passion, such admiration that it makes my heart skip a beat.

“I love you too Nave, so goddamn much.”

I’m on cloud nine, no scratch that, cloud ten. I feel so elated that I forget we’re still standing outside in the driveway. The sun has since set, and the moon now overlooks us.

“Can you come inside, or do you have to go back to campus?” I whisper into his ear as I continue to lean against him underneath the stars.

“There’s no way in hell I’m leaving tonight.”

I glance up to find Mark smirking at me, and suddenly I hear a cough coming from the front door to my apartment.

I glance to my left and see both Lucy and Riley trying to hurriedly shut the door.

I roll my eyes as Mark laughs.

“Let’s get inside.”

He follows me in, and as I glare at my two best friend, Mark winks at them.

I hear them both laugh as Mark and I enter the kitchen.

Riley already cooked some dinner, and Mark happily accepts when I offer him some.

After we eat, we head down the hallway and into my room.

I don’t miss when Mark turns around to lock the door.

“Listen, I know this isn’t going to be easy, but I’m really happy about this.” I find myself saying. “We’ve come a long way since high school already, and I think this could be something really great if we both just let it happen.”

Mark nods as a soft smile appears on his lips.

“I completely agree. We’ve been through so much together and I don’t want it to end.”

I stare at him in complete awe, but suddenly his eyes turn a shade darker.

“There’s also something else I miss, that we used to be really great at.” He smirks playfully.

I can already feel heat rushing to my cheeks as I smirk back at him.

“You’re going to have to remind me.” I tease as I make myself comfortable across my bed.

He didn’t need me to say it twice. He walked over with such grace, I couldn’t keep my eyes off him.

He yanked his shirt up over his head and tossed it on the carpet below his feet. He kicked off his shoes and went to unbuckle his belt. I stopped him.

I crawled over to the edge of the bed and unbuckled his belt for him as he watched me. Lust clouded both of our visions as his pants dropped to his ankles.

He stepped out of them and climbed onto the bed, immediately pulling me in for a kiss that set my entire body in a frenzy. Suddenly my core ached to be touched by his hands, and I felt myself pressing into him tightly. He carefully lowered me down onto the bed and sat up, his hands resting on my thighs.

We find ourselves in a staring contest, as Mark slowly reaches out and grazes his hands against the exposed skin. My shirt has risen up, just enough to show my stomach.

“Dammit Nave, I’ve been craving this.” Mark says in a deep, husky voice.

With no ounce of shyness in me at all, I yanked my shirt up over my head and immediately unclasped my bra. I slowly leaned back against the soft blanket and as I bite my lower lip, I reach my hand up and caress my own breast, smirking and looking directly into Mark’s eyes.

I hear Mark let out a breath, before he’s leaning down to close the large gap between us.

Everything after that left me completely and irrevocably stunned. It’s as if we were never apart from the last time we were together this intimately.

He made me feel things I haven’t felt in a very long time, that and the fact that we both orgasmed all throughout the night made us both equally exhausted. However, we didn’t care. We didn’t give a single shit about anything other than being together.

I never wanted to leave this room. I wanted to stay in this room with him forever.

Because we weren’t just fucking anymore inside of a smelly janitor’s closet, now we were making passionate love together, a feeling foreign to both of us. A feeling neither of us ever wanted to forget.

It was just Naveah and Mark.

Exactly how it should be.

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