Anyone But Him 2: Maddox

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After dropping Willow off I didn't go back to sleep. I couldn't get my mind to settle back down and sometimes it just wasn't worth it. Putting on a cup of coffee I sat down at my table and just stared at the wall in front of me.

By the time dad made it to the shop I was downstairs waiting on him on the stairs that lead up to my apartment. He arched his brow as he slipped under the bay doors. "Late night?"

I shrugged watching as he hit the lights and went in his office to start his own coffee. I followed behind him sinking down in one of the chairs inside. Once his cup was full he sat down in his chair kicking up his feet looking over at me. "Ok so go."

Looking down at the ground I sighed. "I think I'm lost."

Dad looked over at me sitting up and frowning. "Willow?"

I snorted, "why do you assume it's her?"

Shrugging dad took a sip of his coffee, "because you haven't been the same since she started here."

Lening my head back I looked up at the ceiling, "the girl gets on my damn nerves but I find myself attracted to her at the same time. I think she is in some type of trouble and I want to help. I just don't know what to do with her dad. I don't want to hurt her and that's all I would end up doing."

Dad snorted, "I used to tell your mom I would destroy her. I tried my best to push her away Maddox. The more I tried the more she pushed back. Sometimes we can't stop it. Sometimes we need to take the chances and go on the journey. She might not be your other half but she might teach you more about yourself."

"Can I ask you something?" I asked.

Dad nodded, "yeah, go for it."

I let out a breath, "you knew mom was wrong. Why did you even let it get that far? Why did you even start it?"

Dad took a long sip of his coffee and I could see him thinking of what to say. Finally, he sighed, "I don't know the answer to that Maddox. I sat up a million nights wondering the same thing when it first happened. I freaked the fuck out the first time I kissed her only to walk into her room and fuck her days later."

I looked up at him seeing him watching me. He knew their relationship had bothered me so he was usually careful with what he said. "I don't now Maddox. After it happened I had this fantasy that I could be with her then just send her home like it didn't happen. She made me happy, she brought breath into my life and I didn't want to lose that. I can't tell you why. I don't think I even knew then."

I nodded, "you knew it was wrong. Like a whole other level of wrong."

He nodded at me, "I figured I'd end up in hell or jail one but I didn't care as long as I was able to hold her if for even a minute."

Understanding that I'd never really gotten flooded through me. I still didn't think what he did was right. I still didn't condone it but it made sense to me now. She had been the anchor that his soul had needed. He had been lost without her.

"I don't know how to be what she needs," I said looking down.

Dad smiled, "if she is the one you won't need to know, she will show you. You will find yourself doing things you never thought you would for her."

"This isn't me dad." I looked up at him, "I don't fall for girls. I don't give a fuck about them for more than a few nights."

Looking up at him dad laughed, "well sounds like you have and you're going to have to figure out what to do with her."

I snorted, "easier said than done."

Dad nodded kicking his feet back up, "oh I know. I've already figured my life out. Now it's time for you to figure your's out."

Hearing other people come in we walked to the front and I sat and talked to some of the other guys until I heard Willow come in. I walked to the front seeing her look up at me uncertain as she walked behind the counter. "Hey," she said.

I arched my brow, "really that's all you have to say to me after last night?"

Willow blushed her eyes growing bigger as she looked around, "Maddox, shut up before someone hears you."

I looked around with her, "and if they do?"

She tilted her head, "I'll look like an idiot." She looked down, "when you move on if I'm still here I'll look like an idiot."

"You plan on being here that long?"

Willow looked up at me but when she saw me laugh she sighed, "Maddox, stop playing."

I shrugged, "I mean I'd understand if you said you didn't want my sisters to know cause they would give you a hard time."

She shook her head, "please go to work. I can' think when you are around."

"Ok," I said turning to walk off a little amused that she was still flustered. I didn't know what I wanted from her. I had no clue how to be in a relationship, not a real one. I didn't know if I even wanted that.

Willow called my name as I hit the door and when I stalled she sighed, "tonight, meet you at the park?"

I smiled turning around, "I have dinner with the parents. You want to come?"

She shook her head no quickly making me laugh. I kept walking not looking back. For once we weren't fighting and without that, I didn't really know what to say next.

The rest of the day I stayed busy and didn't get to talk to Willow again before she left. I made a point of not being free when she went to lunch and I stayed in the back most of the day. It wasn' that I didn't want to see her it was that I was trying to get my mind right.

When she wasn't so close to me I could think a little straighter. A little but not that much more. When she is with me I find myself weak. And I didn't like to be weak.

At dinner that night I was quiet. I didn't think that anyone had noticed. They had all seemed to be caught up in each other's conversations but as I walked in the kitchen to help mom clear the table she reached out stopping me from turning around. I looked down at her tilting my head, "what do you want woman?"

Mom tilted her head pointing at the bar, "sit I want to talk to you."

I groaned playfully, "has dad been telling you my business."

Mom turned around putting her hands on her hips, "umm no but thank you for telling me he knows what's wrong with you."

I smiled looking down as she pulled a beer out of the fridge and slid it down in front of me. "There's nothing wrong mom," I said looking back up.

She tilted her head, "you might think I'm crazy but I notice small things about you Maddox. You are so much like your dad. I swear I see him in you every time I look at you."

I leaned back, "aww shit."

She rolled her eyes reaching out and swatting me, "Maddox, be for real. You are the biggest ass I've ever met and that says a lot."

I laughed taking a drink of my beer, "I know I was just joking. There really is nothing wrong with me. I mean I have a lot on my mind but I'm fine."

Mom sat down beside me, "I just want you to know I'm here. Now that your older I can't keep up with you and watch after you anymore." She looked down, "I just worry about you. I don't want you to end up on the same path your dad was on when we..."

As she paused I smiled taking another drink, "you don't have to worry about me. I can handle my own."

She snorted, "like I said you sound like your dad."

I looked over at her, "is that such a bad thing?"

Mom looked over at me smiling, "no. I mean your dad had a whole dumb ass stage but if you turn out like him I would still be proud of you."

She had a way of making me feel a little guilty. Even though I saw her every day I didn't' always make time for her. I don't think she had been ready for me or Presley to move out. Dad had always said it was something called empty nesting. She knew Harper wouldn't be far behind.

"I love you mom. I promise you everything is ok." I looked over at her, "I'm not going to make the same mistakes dad did."

She looked over at me, "it's not that I don't want you to make mistakes. I want you to learn from them." She sighed standing up and reaching out to tussle my hair, "I love you too."

My phone vibrated and she looked down rolling her eyes, "that reminds me some girl names Rosalyn came looking for you today."

I frowned, "what?"

She shrugged, "I don't know she talked to Willow. I was on the phone trying to get a part for your dad. I think she might have upset Willow but I don't know what she said."

I let out a sigh, "great."

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