I stared at his lips, suddenly longing to feel them against mine again. He glanced around us and smiled as he said softly,
‘I don’t think I have ever seen you at a party, Anna.’
I tried not to stare at him, but it was virtually impossible. The effect he was having on my body could be medically verified I’m sure of it- my skin felt like it was on fire, heat spreading through my body as his eyes ran up and down it, chewing on his lip as he frowned. He stepped closer to me and I felt my heart trying to escape out of my chest as I tried to breathe normally.
‘You look good. Judging from the looks you’re getting here,’ He nodded to the crowd of people around us, yet didn’t take his eyes from mine. ‘I think you may not need my services any longer.’
We stared at each other then, unsure of what to say next. I wanted to close the distance between us and kiss him, but I knew he would probably laugh at me.
‘Oh God, what are you doing? Bailey, go and prey on some unsuspecting girl. This one is off limits.’ I heard Ray say as she grabbed my hand, pulling me back to the game. ‘You are playing, end of discussion.’
Bailey lifted his eyebrows up as I stared at him in horror and he seemed to sense my fear, his blue eyes locking onto mine.
‘Aurora, its Annabelle’s turn. She’s never played.’ Ray called as Aurora nodded, looking in my direction. I felt eyes on me as I slumped to the sand on my knees, staring daggers at Ray who grinned wickedly.
‘Ok Annabella.’ Crooned Aurora as I felt my cheeks flush at the nickname.
‘Truth or dare?’
I felt sick with nerves as I tried to avoid the stares as tried to think of what to say. Truth is social suicide- questions of have you ever and who do you- no thanks. Dare- equally as terrifying. I felt my body start to shake as Aurora regarded me coolly.
‘Annabelle? Truth or dare?’
‘Dare.’ I muttered as I stared at the floor, awaiting my fate. I heard Ray squeal happily beside me as a murmur went through the crowd.
‘Ooh, a dare.’ She looked around the group dramatically as she paused.
‘I dare you to make out with a stranger.’
Ray gasped as I stared at the floor to calls of ‘Do it! Do it!’ from around me and I stood, my legs wobbling. How was I going to convince a stranger to kiss me? I felt arms on my waist as I was span around to face no other than Reuben Fenton.
‘You’re welcome.’ He whispered, as he pulled me close to him, his mouth on mine. I felt my head spin as he kissed me, the taste of beer strong in his mouth. He wrapped his strong arms around me as people around us shouted and clapped. I felt myself kissing him back, before I pulled away, my eyes wide as he grinned at me.
‘That wasn’t so bad was it? Could have been much worse. You looked terrified.’ He kissed the top of my head as he walked away, swigging his beer. I stood, unable to move. I turned back to the crowd as Ray stared at me openmouthed. I shrugged as I walked away, not wanting to face her questions right now.
‘What the fuck was that?’
‘I didn’t want to play, so don’t start having a go at me Bailey.’
He followed me to the beach, his hand on my arm as he turned me towards him, his blue eyes flashing with anger.
’Your first kiss was with me, your second is with my brother? Wow. So tell me Annabelle. Which of us was better?′
I pulled my arm away from him as I felt a twinge of annoyance.
’Really? It was a dare. He kissed me anyway.′
He raised his eyebrows as he walked towards me.
‘That’s not an answer.’
‘You want me to tell you which of you were the better kisser? What is this, the school playground? It was a dare.’
He stared at me, his eyes unblinking as he clenched his jaw. His hair shone in the sunlight, and I found myself gazing at him.
‘Right then. I dare you to kiss me.’
I laughed nervously, the wind blowing my hair in my face as I walked towards him uncertainly.
‘Bailey, this is ridiculous.’
He grabbed my hand then, pulling me back towards the crowd, my eyes wide as he pushed me into the centre of the game.
‘What the actual fuck are you-’ I hissed as he folded his arms.
‘Truth or dare.’
The crowd fell silent as a girl complained it was her turn, but quickly stopped when she saw Bailey and I in the centre. I gaped at him and he smirked at me.
‘Truth or dare.’ He repeated calmly, his arms folding over his broad chest.
I stared at him, knowing I had to answer, but not knowing what on earth to choose.
‘Truth.’ I said, meeting his eyes.
He smiled wickedly, as though he knew I would say that.
‘Who was the better kisser, me or my brother?’
I heard a gasp ripple through the crowd as my mouth fell open. He was admitting kissing me? What?
I found searched for Ray in the crowd but couldn’t see her, desperate for someone to save me.
‘You.’ I whispered quietly, aware he probably didn’t hear me.
‘Sorry, say that again? I couldn’t hear you. Could you hear her guys?’
He called to the crowd as they shouted for me to speak up.
I folded my arms to match his as I glared at him.
‘I said, You.’ I spoke through gritted teeth as he smirked again, his mouth curling into a wicked grin.
‘Your turn.’ He said as I blinked. He winked at me, opening his arms out to me.
‘Ask me, truth or dare. Anything you want.’
I heard a voice speak then, filled with anger.
‘I’ll ask you. Truth or dare, Bailey.’ I turned to see Ray glaring at him, her eyes blazing with fury.
‘Truth, of course.’ He smiled at her and my eyes flew back to her in fear.
‘Is it true you had a bet to date me?’
Oh good, that was easy for him.
He clenched his jaw then as he glared back at Ray, as she smiled at him smugly.
‘No.’ He muttered and she nodded. The crowd became bored of us, and moved on to its next victim, but I stared at Bailey as he glared at Ray.
‘Bailey, what is she on about?’ I asked as I walked towards him. He turned to me, his eyes softening as he reached up to stroke my face.
‘I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to lie to you. I didn’t realise I would-’
‘You’re a fucking dick Bailey. You did have a bet though, just not about me. Right?’ Ray commanded, and the blood drained from his face as I watched him in horror.
‘Bailey?’ I whispered as he looked at me with hurt in his eyes.
‘Fuck. I can explain-’
‘Nope, no time for that. No time for immature silly little boys and their silly little games. Not when there are real men around, who know how to treat a girl like Annabelle. Come on.’ She tried to pull me away as I shrugged her off, seething.
‘No, I would like Bailey to explain. I’ll catch up with you.’ I told her as she threw him an angry look.
‘Don’t waste too much of your time.’
She walked away and left us standing there, my eyes on his as he reached out for me. His fingers touched mine briefly as I drew them back like I had been electrocuted.
‘So, enlighten me.’
He sighed as he chewed on his lip, his eyes sad.
‘You were the bet. Which one of us could sleep with you first.’
I felt like someone had punched me in the stomach. I felt tears in my eyes as he stared at the floor, unable to look at me. So Chase and Bailey were in competition?
‘Are you for real right now? Wow. So you weren’t helping me. You were seducing me.’ I said bitterly, my voice full of emotion as his eyes met mine.
‘No, its not like that. I didn’t realise I would feel how I do about you.’
I shook my head in disbelief.
‘Please, leave me alone. I don’t ever want to speak to you again.’
‘Its fucking Annabelle, Bailey, Annabelle. Not that I will need to correct you anymore.’