The painful secret (1)

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Chapter eight

Monday was a breath of relief for Allison. All day Sunday, she felt like she was suffocating in her house, afraid of her father possibly coming back for round two. Luckily, he didn't, but the fact that he was only a couple rooms away, kept her on edge. She jumped at every and any noise she heard the rest of that day and night.

The only thing about the start of the new week was the awkward tension reverberating between her and Brian. She didn't even dare bring up the next day they could meet.

As she sat in homeroom, wearing a large turtleneck to cover the finger marks on her neck, Allison veiled her face from him with her hair and pretended to read through a book she had brought to school. She didn't know what was going through his mind after the incident on Saturday, and frankly, she was afraid to know. He probably thought she was insane for springing at him like that. Not to mention that she tackled him to the ground over a sketchbook. Insane may be too light of a word to describe how she acted on Saturday.

But what she was really scared of was if he would even talk to her anymore. Which prompted her to wonder, why. Why did she care so much about what he thought of her? It wasn't as if he had any ounce of caring for her. So why should she waste her time worrying about what he thought of her.

But存he did.

Allison casually flipped her hair behind her and glanced at the raven-haired boy in the chair next to her. He was looking right at her. His eyes were piercing and they made her emerald ones return to her book. She could feel her cheeks heating up and just wanted to dig a hole and bury herself in it.

"劣ey," came his deep voice to her ears.

Swallowing, she turned to him. She figured she would have to face him eventually anyway. "Y" Allison cleared her throat. "Yes?"

Brian was silent for a couple moments as he kept their gazes locked. But she caught him flick them away for only a second, before they returned. Finally, he spoke. "What happened to-"

The bell rang, cutting him off. Allison didn't wait to hear what he had to say and stood from her chair after collecting her things. Racing from the classroom, she headed to her English class with haste.

Alice was already there, which reminded her about the movie plans she was going to have to break. She was dreading it.

"Oh, Allison," Alice said, calling her over to her seat.

Allison feigned a smile and took a seat behind her. "Hey, Alice." She didn't want to say anything just yet.

"So, I have some bad news. We are going to have to reschedule the movies tonight because Jason isn't feeling well and I said I would go to his house after school. I'm really sorry."

Allison shook her head, relieved. "No. You don't have to be sorry. Just tell Jason that I hope he gets well soon." Did she really request that? Maybe she was just so happy that she wouldn't have to be the one breaking the plans.

Alice smiled. "I will and once he's feeling better, we'll make plans. Okay?"

Allison nodded, even though she wasn't even allowed to hang out with Alice anymore. She wasn't going to worry about it now though. The bell rang and everyone filtered into the classroom.

~~~~

Jeffrey had brought in a model so that they could practice figure drawing. The model was dressed in a skin-tight suit, allowing all of his curves to be easily viewed. Jeffrey was having them do this incase they wanted to have more than just a head in their final portrait.

Allison had pulled her hair back because it kept getting in her way. This kind of drawing came easy to her. She often sat on bench in the Grace park and drew the people that walked by or was having a picnic. She always found the human form interesting and challenging. So this exercise was very enjoyable to her.

"You're very good," came a deep voice next to her.

Allison jumped and turned her head to the owner. To her surprise, Brody was looking over her arm and at her drawing. This was the first time he ever said anything to her. "Th宇hanks" A blush came to her cheeks. She was always very private when it came to her work. Brian was well aware of that by now. In fact, the only person she ever showed them to was Jeffrey and that was because she had to most of the time.

Brody's eyes scanned over her and then flicked to his. "A lot better than I can do. That's for sure." He lifted up his sketchbook and showed her his picture. "See?"

Allison's eyebrows furrowed at the picture. She hated to think it, but it was horrible. The arms were far too long and thin and the legs where thick and stout. The model's head was too big and there was practically no neck. It looked nothing like the model.

"Can you give me some pointers?" he asked. "Jeffrey said I should ask someone for help and I think you're the best in the class. So, do you mind?"

A smile unconsciously crept over her lips. He thought she was the best in the class? That was a compliment that made her extremely happy and it also seemed like he really needed her help. She nodded and he scooted closer to her as she began showing him measuring techniques.

~~~~

Brian watched the two intently, from the other side of the room. When he noticed they were talking, he couldn't help but look over at them. But then she let him look at her sketchbook and smiled at something he said. Just two days ago, she had tackled him to the ground so that he couldn't look at the damn sketch book.

"What the hell?"

Brian watched at the dark-haired boy scooted closer to her and they continued to talk. He unconsciously broke his pencil because of the tight grip he had on it. The sound of it breaking made him look away and sigh. What was wrong with him? Why did he care what they were talking about?

Was he夸ealous?

Brian shook his head. "No匈'm definitely not jealous" He looked back at them, his stomach sinking. Maybe, he admitted to himself, he was. All he wanted to do was walk over to them and pull her away from Brody. He felt she should have been sitting next to him. She should have been talking to him. She was his partner after all.

But, he kept himself rooted to his chair. His eyes constantly strayed to them and his ears perked up when they started talking. It was excruciating to watch her smile at things he said when it was so hard to get one out of her himself. She was conversing with the boy so freely, but she barely spoke around Brian.

The whole thing pissed him off.

Then, finally, the bell rang. Brian collected his things, keeping his eyes on them. He almost rushed over there and punched the boy out when he gave her a piece of paper, which Brian assumed, had his number on it. "Like she would even call you."

Finally, Brody left her and headed out the door, glancing at him, and smirking, as he left. It took all of his will to hold back from hurting him. Allison was still putting her things away and he took this chance to walk over to her.

Brian saw her eyes follow him as he approach. She just looked away and continued putting her things in her backpack, but more frantically. He sighed when he reached her. "Allison." He waited for her to look at him.

"Y尖es?" Her voice cracked and blush rose to her cheeks. But before he could continued, she started shoveling apologies out of her mouth at an alarming speed.

Brian shook his head. "Stop."

She did so, grabbing the strap of her book bag tighter.

He sort of felt bad for being so harsh and he didn't know why. "I just wanted to know when we were meeting again?"

She thought for a moment. "Sometime this week? I匈'm busy on the weekend"

She was lying and he knew it, but he didn't say anything. "Then how about Thursday?"

"Your place?" she asked quickly.

Brian blinked. "Alright."

Allison nodded and stood. "I'll see you then"

But Brian didn't let her pass. There was one more thing he wanted to say to her.

Bending down to her ear, he whispered, "Put your hair down. You're bruises are showing." With those words, he turned and left.

In homeroom, when she moved her hair behind her, he noticed them right away. He was going to ask her about them, but she was quick to leave at the bell. It was an odd place to have bruises and it was something he wanted to ask her about. That curiosity was still nagging him and he would find about them
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