What Doesn't Kill You

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Chapter 10

Scout and Lucky were quiet on the drive back home. They exchanged a few comments but it was the radio that was the most prominent noise in the car. Scout’s mind was a million miles away, retracing everything that had happened over the weekend.

For the most part it’d been enjoyable. She couldn’t remember the last time she’d had that much fun with a single person. Lucky barrelled into her life and now it was difficult to imagine him not being in it. The problem was, she was starting to worry that the lines were being blurred, more so on her side than his.

Small sparks of jealousy arose when people paid him attention. Her heart picked up the pace when he touched her. Lucky was the first person she spoke to in the morning and the last person she spoke to at night. He said he didn’t do relationships. She couldn’t let herself feel that way about him.

Four hours later, they pulled off the motorway and into Swansea but Lucky must have been on autopilot because instead of dropping her at the flat, he drove straight to his place.

“Luck…”

“Ah, shit! Sorry, Scout.”

“It’s fine. I can get a cab.”

“I… why don’t you come in?”

“Sure.”

It was late but that was nothing new to them. They binged Tiger King recently and ended up in a heated discussion that lasted til the early hours.

Lucky helped her out of the car and opened the door to his ground floor flat. Scout was a little jealous of the fact that he had a garden.

“Do you want a drink?” Lucky asked.

“Why not?”

She followed him through to the kitchen and he pulled out a bottle of wine before pouring them two glasses. Lucky motioned to the back door. Out in the garden, he plonked himself down on the grass and Scout lowered herself down next to him.

“I’m not sure I’m sold on London,” Lucky said to her.

“What?”

“It’s busy. The people are rude. It’s packed with buildings.”

“You’re looking at it all wrong. London is filled with culture and opportunities. It’s better than Swansea.”

“Is it?”

“You wait. You’ll get bored being here.”

“I don’t think I will.”

“I know you will.”

“You know you don’t have to be right about this, Scout. People might actually like this city.” He was getting defensive and she couldn’t understand why.”

“I’m not saying you can’t like it. I’m just saying that maybe you’ll want more at some point.”

“Like you did?”

“You make it sound like a bad thing.”

“I just don’t get why you don’t appreciate what you have for now. You’re either living in your past or the future. Try appreciating what’s under your nose, Scout.”

She was taken aback by the mini lecture he had just dished out but maybe Lucky was right. Scout had been visualising and dreaming of moving back to London that maybe she hadn’t fully appreciated being home. It’d been nice to see Jim on a regular basis again. She’d missed having people know her and waving as she walked the streets.

“Sorry,” Lucky said. “I didn’t mean to snap. I’m just tired.”

“It’s okay.” Scout bumped her shoulder against his. “I really don’t have anything against the city. It’s beautiful.”

“I think that’s the first positive thing you’ve said.”

“Let me take you down the Gower the next time we’re free.”

“You mean let me take you.”

Scout still wasn’t able to drive. She was verging on three months since surgery and she had a better range of motion. Ava said there would be nothing like swimming or running until at least five months in.

“I promise to chauffer you wherever you want when I’m healed up,” Scout said.

“In which case we’re taking a road trip to Scotland.”

“I am not dealing with you for eight hours.”

“Yes, you are. And for eight hours, I am going to be in charge of the music.”

“God, no! I am not listening to any more Skrillex.” She pulled a face. Lucky had some interesting tastes in music. Not exactly the kind of thing Scout would choose if she was DJing the car.

“You were quiet on the drive home,” Lucky commented. “Is everything okay? Please tell me you aren’t thinking about that Scott guy.”

She shook her head. Scott wasn’t the guy she was thinking about. “No. I mean, not entirely anyway.”

“Scout, he wasn’t like that when you were together, was he?”

“Nope. Scott was pretty lovely when we were together. I didn’t realise that me putting so many hours into dance bothered him.”

“It shouldn’t have.”

“I don’t know. Maybe I could have paid him more attention or spent less hours in the studio or—”

“Stop.” Lucky said the word with such force that Scout turned her head to look at him. He had a small crease in the middle of his brow and she realised how close they were sitting together. “You put time and effort in to what you thought was worth it, Scout. If you thought Scott was worth it you would have given it to him.”

Scout bit on her lip and looked down. Lucky had a point. She could have made more time for Scott if she wanted to but she hadn’t.

Lucky’s fingers came to her chin and lifted her head so she was looking at him again. She wasn’t sure if it was because they were both tired or what but Lucky leaned in so that their foreheads pressed against each other. His breath was warm on her face and the butterflies ran rampant in her stomach. Lucky’s eyes were looking right into hers. Scout felt nervous, as if he’d be able to read every thought and feeling she had.

“Scout, whatever man ends up deserving you will be behind you 100%. They won’t be jealous of your career.” His voice was a whisper. It was just the two of them out in his garden but it was like he wanted to make sure that no one else in the world could hear what he was saying to her.

“I’m not sure a man like that exists, Lucky.” She was lightheaded as if she couldn’t take in enough oxygen. Lucky was stealing her every breath. What was happening? How could her heart be so out of sync with her brain? Lucky was trouble. Lucky was a fuckboy. Lucky didn’t do relationships. Scout kept screaming those facts in her head. But with every beat her heart reminded her of something else. Lucky was funny. Lucky was kind. Luck was loyal. Lucky was all she could think about these days.

“I think he does.”

His eyes flicked to her lips. Scout hadn’t felt so nervous since opening her A level results to find out if she’d gotten into uni.

“You’ll have to introduce me to him,” she whispered.

Lucky gave the smallest nod of his head and his face got closer still. It was a magnetic pull between them. Scout’s eyes fluttered closed. She wanted so badly to know what it was like to kiss him. She was close to finding out when…

“Shit!” Scout said. “Sorry!” Caught up in the moment, she’d let go of her wine glass in her hand, causing the contents to spill on him before their lips had a chance to meet.

Lucky looked shocked for a second before he laughed and shook his head. “No problem, Scout. You know, for a dancer you’re a proper klutz.” He placed some space between them and Scout picked up the glass. He took it from her before he stood up. “I’ll top you up.”

“Uh, no. Um… I think I’m going to head home actually. I’m really tired.”

“Oh… I’ll give you a lift.”

“No. Don’t be silly. You’re home.”

“Scout, it’s late.”

“Swansea isn’t exactly unsafe.”

“Yeah but still—”

“Lucky, you worry too much. I’m fine.” She pushed herself up from the ground.

“Message me when you get home.”

“Sure. And thanks for the weekend. I really enjoyed myself.”

“Yeah, me too.”

Scout took the lead, walking back into his flat and grabbing her weekend bag from the hallway.

“Scout,” Lucky said.

“Mhm?”

“…I’m really glad I met you.”

“Same. Goodnight, Luck.”

She turned away and opened the door before walking out of his flat and onto the street. She didn’t live too far away. It was probably about a fifteen minute walk and she’d done it plenty of times. Plus it gave her a chance to think.

The streets were quiet apart from a car or two that passed by and they were lit up with streetlights. Her stomach hadn’t completely unknotted itself from the interaction they’d just had.

Was it possible for them to blur the lines of their friendship? Scout valued Lucky more than she thought she would when she first met him. They’d formed a bond quickly and it was solid. He was her go to guy. He was… he was the small echo of doubt in her head about moving back to London.

When she moved, she wouldn’t have him with her the way she did now. Scout told him flippantly before that they would have Facetime but it wasn’t the same. She wouldn’t be able to hear the true, deep belly laugh he did when he found something amusing or find the comfort in his arms when she cried over a sad part in a film. There would be no more brunches or lunches. Eventually, she would find someone to date and even though her denied it would happen, so would he.

The thought of him with someone else made her heart ache in her chest but it was so utterly ridiculous to be jealous. Lucky wasn’t Scout’s. He was her friend but he wasn’t anything more than that. He could never be anything more than that.

Despite what she may or may not feel, it wasn’t like he saw her in that way. That almost, maybe kiss that seemed to happen just now… He backed away pretty quickly and acted like it wasn’t a thing. You didn’t do that to someone you were interested in.

No. Lucky hadn’t wanted to kiss her. Of course not. It was the both of them getting caught up in the moment. Scout didn’t have feelings for Lucky. She couldn’t. This was all down to the fact that they’d be spending a lot of time together. Maybe they just needed some space. She should make an effort to see Ava and see if Chrissy was free from training at some point so they could hang out.

She wasn’t going to ruin this.

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