The painful secret (1)

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Chapter seven

Allison looked up at him.

Brian looked down at her.

Both of them were motionless as they stared at each other for long moments. After Allison lunged at him, in hopes of retrieving her sketchbook, she realized that she may have put too much force behind her attempt because they were now lying on the floor, her on top of him. Her hand clutched the sketchbook, which Brian still held on to. Color had flushed to her cheeks and her heart pounded in her chest.

Brian was speechless. The girl surprised him when she came at him so suddenly. He was going to side-step her, but she crashed into him before he had the chance. What surprised him the most what the fact that he hooked an arm around her tiny form, as if protecting her from impact with the floor. That arm was still around her, but as he slowly collected himself, he removed his arm and also the grip on her sketchbook.

But she still didn't move. "刖et off," he said rather harshly.

Allison gasped and scrambled off of him. She grabbed her bag and shoved her sketchbook in it, mumbling apologies the entire time. Without even a goodbye, she raced from his room and out of the house.

As she hurried down the sidewalk, Allison replayed the events in her head over and over again until she was so red, that her face looked like a ripe tomato. "What was I thinking when I dove at him like that?" she questioned herself. "I must have gone crazy!" She didn't know why she was so particular about keeping her drawings from him. Was it because she didn't think they were good? Or was it because she didn't want Brian thinking they were bad?

Either way, what happened was probably the most humiliating thing she had ever done in her entire life. And what would Brian think of her? Would he even want to work with her after that little incident?

She was so humiliated.

~~~~

Brian continued to lie on the floor. He didn't move an inch, even after he heard the front door close. The only thing he could think was, 'What the hell just happened?' He didn't know what to think about the incident and he didn't know why. Usually, he would just get up and forget it ever happened.

But it continued to play over and over in his mind and it was pissing him off. He finally sat up and raked a hand through his thick, black hair. What was it about that girl that made him constantly think about her? She wasn't anyone special. She was just an average high school student安ho's a little weird

"Allison Lia " he said to himself as he looked at the chair she sat in when she was drawing. The images of her hand guiding the pencil and the concentration lines that had formed on her brow were still fresh in his mind and he couldn't get rid of them. "Ah, fuck!"

He rose to his feet and went into his bathroom. Turning on the faucet, he let the water fill up his cupped hands before he splashed it in his face. He sighed and looked into his mirror, frustration present in his eyes. "What is it about you, Allison?" He asked himself. "Why can't I stop thinking about you?"

~~~~

Allison had work the next day which was somewhat of a relief. The embarrassment of the day before weighed on her mind all night. At least her mind would be constantly occupied throughout the day. And everything was going fine, that is, until a certain dark-haired girl walked in.

"Hey, Allison," Alice greeted, as she strode up to the counter where the said girl was.

Allison looked up from wiping the wood surface down. "Oh. Hi, Alice. Can I get you anything?"

She shook her head. "No, but I've been looking for you."

"You have?" Allison asked, surprised. She only talked to the girl once during English class.

Alice nodded. "Yeah. I called your house and when your dad said you weren't home, I asked him if you were at work."

Allison became as stiff as a board. "You吃ou talked to my father? What did he say?"

"Just that you weren't home and that he would tell you I called." She shrugged. "Why?"

"Just安ondering" The truth was, she was scared. Her father had no idea that she had gotten a job. All those days when he thought she was going to the library, she was actually going to work to save up money and move out. She knew her father would be angry好o, irate. She was in some serious trouble.

"Anyway," Alice continued. "I came by because I wanted to know if you wanted to see a movie after work. Jason and Brittlyn will be joining us, too."

"I守m圭an't tonight. I'm kinda tired," she lied. Allison didn't want to stay out longer and make her father even angrier. Even though she was dreading going home, she would rather face him now than have it in the back of her mind all day.

"Oh吏kay."

She noticed the dark-haired girl's disappointment and immediately felt bad. "But, I can go out tomorrow night," she said quickly. "I don't have work tomorrow, so I won't be so tired."

A smile graced the sweet girl's lips. "Alright. Then I'll tell Jason and Brittlyn that we're going tomorrow." Just as she was planning on leaving, something else came to mind. "Oh! How was working with Brian, yesterday?"

Heat washed over her body and then rushed to her cheeks. She looked back towards the counter, continuing to wipe it down. "Fine."

"Really? That's surprising."

"We守h安e didn't talk much. Just drew. His parents were nice too."

Alice smiled. "That's what Jason said too. He also thinks he was switched at birth because Brian is so much different than them." She giggled.

Allison smiled, but it was a forced one. The only thing on her mind was her confrontation with her father. "Yeah"

"I better get going," she said. "Bye Allison. I'll talk to you tomorrow." She waved and left the caf矇.

A frown creased her lips as her hand stilled on the counter. Her stomach had been in knots ever since Alice told her that she called her father. The whole time they were talking, Allison had to work to keep the nausea from rising into her throat. Her heart was beating heavily in her chest and if it wasn't for a new customer entering arriving, she swore she would have fainted from nerves, right then and there.

~~~~

He was home. His truck was in the driveway.

Swallowing heavily, Allison opened the front door and stepped inside her house. Closing the door, she quickly hurried up the stairs and into her room. Just as she was about to close her door, her father appeared in her doorway, arms crossed over his broad chest. His emerald eyes were narrow and fixated on her.

"Where were you, Allison?" he asked, taking a step towards her.

She took one away from him. "I安as守m匈 was"

Her father slammed the door shut and approached her. "Don't lie to me, girl!" He reached out to her and grabbed her around the throat. "A Alice Anders called. Did you know that?"

Allison struggled to breath, but it was incredibly hard. She didn't answer, but tried to pull away from him.

He was having none of it and swung her body around and slammed her back into her door. "Tell me everything right now, Allison! Are you working?! And if so where?!"

"The吋he Grace列offee shop" she coughed. Her eyes made sure you look away from him, afraid to stare into his angry eyes.

"How dare you?! I don't ever remember saying you could get a job!"

Allison winced at his loud voice. "I匈'm sorry." Her head was starting to feel light from lack of oxygen.

He growled. "You will not work there anymore. You will call them tonight and quite! And I don't want you talking to this Anders girl anymore!" He pulled her towards him, only to slam her against the door again. "Understand?!"

Allison gasped and nodded.

"Good." He threw her to the ground and left her room without as much as another glance at her.

Air immediately hit her lungs, filling her and them with life. Her hands strayed to her neck, knowing that bruises were already forming. Pain throbbed through her collar bone and lower back, but what hurt the most was the fact that she could no longer work at the Coffee Shop.

She laid down one the floor and turned her face into the carpet. Her only hope of ever leaving her prison was just taken away from her.
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