17: "So good to see you again!"
Unsurprisingly, he got there before me. The weather had not been kind, coaxing me out with its autumn promises of leafy walks to the bus stop, only to cackle hysterically as the clouds boomed above me.
To put it bluntly, I was drenched.
I'm English- we are used to it. It rains pretty much every day, and if it doesn't, it's not England.
So me being in America and all...I kinda thought I'd chance it, and the worst case scenario would be the slightly windswept look. I could almost hear the weather gods laughing as I pushed the door open, my hair stuck to my head as I tried not to slip in my boots.
I scanned the cafe, my stomach dropping when I saw him standing talking to another perfect insta girl, looking like he had stepped out of a magazine shoot. I ducked into the queue, and hoped he wouldn't notice me. I was too far away to hear their conversation, but he looked way too relaxed for my liking. He was giving her my favourite smile too, as he listened to her every word. I ordered my coffee, aware my bloody accent would soon be heard all over the shop.
"Single shot or double?" asked the barista, not meeting my eyes.
"Triple. I'm tired," I smiled, fishing my money out of my purse. My drink was ready in record time, and I sent a silent fuck you to the Coffee Gods, who were clearly in cahoots with the Weather Gods.
There was nothing else for it, I had to walk over there. Looking like a drowned rat. I went as slow as I could, realising my jeans were damp too. I looked forward to itchy skin later. As I neared them I heard him murmur to her,
"Tell them congratulations. I always did like your brother."
"I will. So good to see you Drake."
I didn't like her sweet silky voice, or the familiarity I heard in it. Who the actual fuck was she? More to the point, why was he watching her leave like she was some kind of snack before dinner? I slammed my coffee on the table, as he jumped, turning towards me.
"Hey! I'm sorry, I didn't notice you come in," he mumbled as I sat in front of him, peeling my coat that was like a second skin from my shoulders. Urgh. I needed an umbrella. For next time.
"No, you seemed rather distracted," I snapped, irritated beyond belief. He blinked quickly, before finally noticing my appearance.
"You should have let me pick you up."
His tone was disapproving, as he gazed at me.
"Well it's a good job I didn't or you might've missed her," I shot back, watching as he narrowed his eyes at me.
"Is this how we are going to begin?"
"I don't know, Drake. Is it?"
I pushed a hand through my hair as I tried to make it look less nest like, and more human. I decided to let him talk, seeing as he seemed to be better at it than me. I was just annoyed in general, especially after the way he blew me off.
"So I'm sorry for the way I reacted to you kissing that douche," he said softly, leaning forward to rest his elbows on his knees. I caught a whiff of his aroma, aching when I realised it wasn't even cologne. It was just man.
"It was just to prove I felt nothing for him," I explained, tipping sweetener into my coffee, sachet after sachet. He watched me, intrigued.
"Oh great. I do hope he believed you after you kissed him like that," he snapped, frowning at me.
"Look. I'll tell you how it was between Alexander and I, but you have to listen and not shout at me. It's not cool, Drake, I've literally kissed you once and you-"
"Alright, beautiful. Alright. I'll listen and I'll just stare at your wet body, if that's all the same to you," I gasped as he held his hands up, quickly backtracking.
"Sorry, my bad. I won't interrupt. Promise."
So I outlined the relationship as his eyes darkened with jealousy.
"I suppose because it was kinda forbidden at first, it was even more exciting. We were seeing each other whenever we could- stolen kisses in the bathroom-"
"Nope, you can't tell me shit like that, Victoria."
"Right. So anyway once it was public knowledge, we flaunted it a bit. It was...a relief to be out in the open. Finally people who had been trying things for a while with either of us unsuccessfully understood why," he was studying me carefully, his lips parted slightly as he sighed softly.
"We were together for two years. Then my Dad died."
He looked down then, reaching for my hand as he lifted it to his lips. My skin was screaming to be touched by him, a shiver running through me when he finally did.
"He said we could move in together. But the cracks had already started to appear. But you know how it ends."
"So he tried to see if you were still attracted to him?"
"Pretty much," I nodded sadly, "he said to kiss him, and if I didn't feel anything..."
"And did you?"
I looked up at him then, shaking my head slowly.
"No. It wasn't what a kiss should be like. It was methodical and familiar...but it didn't give me butterflies or goosebumps. You know?"
Of course he did. My heart began to hammer in my chest as I released his hand to sip my coffee.
"So that was that. Now tell me why you struggled so much with it."
I waited patiently, my finger running around the rim of the glass as he watched me.
"Because I was jealous," he said slowly, his green gaze resting on me as I looked at him innocently.
"I think your words were- 'have you ever seen someone you love kiss someone else?'"
He was silent then as his jaw clenched. Why wasn't he admitting what he said?
"Look. I was a bit tipsy- I meant to say- I mean- I can't.. . I don't know enough..."
I wasn't expecting him to declare his undying love for me, but still it hurt when he tried to dismiss it so easily.
"I didn't expect you to fall in love with me, Drake. I certainly don't love you."
We stared at each other then, as he nodded slowly.
"But we like each other, right? Can't we just start there? Because I'm sitting here right now, and all I want to do is kiss you. Like, I'm really struggling not to touch you."
I was cold, wet and now, unloved. But Drake Anderson wanted to kiss me.
"Only if you drive me home. I'm freezing."
His eyes danced with amusement as he leaned forward.
"I'll take you home to change, you can wear some of my clothes. You look fucking hot in them anyway. I have a shower, which is en suite. You won't need to see anyone."
"You want me to come back to yours like this? My jeans are soaked, your car seat will get damp," I protested as he continued to gaze at me thoughtfully before standing up.
"Fuck the car seat, just say yes."
He didn't love me, but he looked at me like he did. He wanted to kiss me; wanted me to wear his clothes and go to his house. Either he was one dedicated fuck boy or he was catching feelings and struggling to admit it. Either way my answer was the same.
Ohhhh these two are killing me 😂