The painful secret (1)

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Chapter fourteen

Brian cursed and swam over to the intruder安ell夷ntruders. Alice, Brittlyn, and Brody all appeared through the gate in the fence. School had ended and they decided to just come over, which he was currently not cool with. "What the hell, Jason?"

The blonde shook his head when he came to the surface, throwing water on the aggravated boy. It was the second time someone interrupted and he was getting quite annoyed. Not to mention, he never invited them in the first place. He saw Allison get out of the water out of the corner of his eye and place herself on the edge.

"Hey, Brian! Missed you at school today." He looked over at Allison and raised an eyebrow at the dark-haired boy. "O-h.I hope we aren't" he cleared his throat. "Interrupting," he finished, nudging him in the arm.

Of course, Brian wasn't going to tell Jason about his uncharacteristic feelings for the girl. So he came up with a quick lie. "It's not like that. Her father had an appointment with my parents today and she came along. I just missed school because I was out drinking last night."

The boy fell for it. "Oh. I see." He sounded strangely disappointed. "Sorry, man. I hope you don't mind that we came by either."

Brian sighed and shook his head. He wasn't going to tell them to leave now. "It's fine."

"Woooooooooo! Good. I don't have a pool and it's the perfect day for swimming. I tried to call," he continued, explaining his sudden arrival. "But no one answered. I figured you were just outside playing basketball and then I heard splashing"

"And you just decided to come right in?" he asked dryly. "What if it happened to be my parents swimming and not me?"

Jason shrugged. "I looked before I jumped."

Brian sighed and glanced over at the red-haired girl wadding her legs in the water and talking with Alice and Brittlyn, who sat on either side of her. She seemed incredibly uncomfortable. He knew it was because Allison didn't want them finding out about her scars. Somehow, he had to make sure that shirt stayed on.

"Surprised to see her here," came a deep voice. Brody had joined him and Jason in the pool. "You got something going on with her? It seems unlikely"

"No, she is just here because her father had a conference with his parents today," Jason explained. "It'd be weird if Brian here started dating someone."

Brody glanced at Brian and then Allison. He had his suspicions, but kept them to himself. Anyway, his attention was on Brittlyn and her yellow bathing suit.

Jason nudged him. "Why don't you just ask her out, man? That's what she's waiting for."

The boy shook his head. "I don't think so."

"Not like you to be unconfident," Brian pointed out.

Brody frowned. He and Brian were always butting heads and everyone was just waiting for them to fight. He lunged for Brian, who moved out of the way fluidly and countered by dunking his attacker under the water. Jason was next to join the fray and a water war soon broke out.

~~~~

Brittlyn rolled her eyes. "Boys"

Allison didn't reply, just nodded. "So守m冰rittlyn, are you and Brody going out?"

The girl leaned back on her palms and shook her head. "No, but I would like to." She looked at the boy playing in the water. "I'm just waiting for him to ask me out. He acts like he likes me, but has yet to say so." She sighed, obviously frustrated. "I'm about to make the first move myself."

Alice giggled. "You always say that, but then you decide to wait for him."

"I know" She looked at Allison. "What about you, Allison?"

Allison looked at her, unsure of what she was asking.

"I mean, what's with you and Brian?"

A blushed rushed to her cheeks. "Nothing," she answered quickly. "We are just working together. That's all. It was a coincidence that we both missed school today. He called to see when we could work on it again. So, here I am" She hated lying, but couldn't possibly tell them the truth and she knew Brian wouldn't either.

"Oh," she replied.

"I can't imagine him with anyone anyway," Alice said. "He doesn't seem like the type."

"You're right," Brittlyn said. "He isn't one for relationships. That's why he sleeps with the drunken girls at parties."

Allison's eyes widened. She knew he wasn't exactly sociable, but to find out that he liked one night stands hit her hard. Glancing at him, she frowned. Was he just being nice to her just because he wanted to get in her pants? She shook her head. No. He wasn't like that. This was just girl's gossip.

"You alright?" Brittlyn asked.

She gasped, but nodded quickly. "Yeah."

"C'mon," Alice started. "Let's break them up before someone drowns."

Brittlyn nodded. "Good idea and you should take off that shirt Allison. It's not like your fat or anything."

"I don't want to get burned. I have fair skin. Besides, I had enough of swimming. I'm going to dry off." She stood.

"Aw! Come on, Ally," Alice begged. "We can't take on all three of them by ourselves."

Allison shook her head. "I won't be of much help anyways." With that, she headed over to the lounge chairs and took a seat. Sighing out of relief, she watched as the other two girls shrugged and slid into the cool water. Alice was quick to jump on Jason, who flipped her over his shoulder. Brittlyn also suffered the consequences of going after Brody. When she tried to dunk him, he spun around and was currently making chase after her.

Brian, now free from Jason's and Brody's tag team in the water, swam over to the edge and took in a couple deep breaths before lifting himself out. She watched him shake his hair free of water and stand. As he headed in her direction, butterflies broke out inside of her, twisting her stomach in knots. But, he didn't take a seat on a chair, but rather at the edge of the pool in front of her. "I didn't know they were coming over," he said.

Allison stood from the chair and boldly sat next to him. She felt his eyes on her for only a moment. "I know," she finally replied.

They were silent as they basked in the warm sun and watched their friends laugh and splash around. Jason noticed them and decided to swim over. "You sure there's nothing going on?" he asked. He was just teasing them; his wide smile gave it away.

"Shut up, Jason," Brian replied.

"Hey, hey. I was just kidding, man. Jeez. You're always such a jerk to me and I've been your friend for so long," he pouted.

"Because you're annoying."

"You should夙ive him a break," Allison said, albeit hesitantly.

Brian raised an eyebrow at her.

"Yeah! Yeah! What she said! Believe it!"

The other three also got out of the pool and took a seat behind them in the chairs. "Come and sit with me, Jason," Alice requested as she wrapped herself in a towel.

As Jaon went to pull himself out of the water, his hands slipped on the watery edge, making him grab for the closest thing to him; which was Allison. But instead, he gripped her shirt. Brian had taken hold of her around the waist when he saw that Jason was bringing her down with him.

Unfortunately, this caused her to lean forward and her shirt to slip off over her head, leaving her exposed.

She heard gasps from the three behind her, stilling her in place. Her heart seemed to stop in her chest and her breathing slowed. Everything Allison had worked so hard to hide was now on showcase for everyone to see.

"A再lly" Alice started. "What happened宇o you?" Her words were full of horror as her eyes continued to scan the wounds on her back.

Jason rose from the water, clueless to everything. "Arg! Sorry about that" He looked around at everyone. "Did I miss something?" he asked, scratching the back of his head.

Allison stood and ran inside, humiliated and scared of what everyone was going to say. She wasn't ready to answer them.

"You all need to go," Brian said, following after her, disappearing inside his house.

They all did as told, not sure if they should question what they just saw. Collecting their things, they left and Jason followed but he still didn't know what was going on.
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