This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.
Chapter 1 (started 9/4/2015)
Nate sighed heavily waking up to realize that he really did sprain his wrist the previous night when he fell off his dirt bike. The black brace seemed to mock him as he sat up and wipe the sleep from his eyes. Well he knew Coach wouldn’t be too happy when he found out seeing Nate was and had been quarterback of the varsity football team since sophomore year as well as captain of the soccer team though usually soccer didn’t start until after Christmas break.
He went over to the mirror and tried to fix his short blonde hair but after several failed attempts he gave up and got dressed before heading downstairs. The smell of coffee and bacon filled the air; Leah, Nate’s sixteen year old sister sat at the bar with just a bowl of cereal while their mother stood at the stove cooking.
“Did she seem mad this morning?” Nate whispered to his sister. However, before she had the chance to reply their mother wheeled around with the frying pan dividing up the eggs and bacon for three plates.
“And why ever would I be mad, Nathaniel David?!” Uh oh. Whenever his mom called him by his first and middle name he knew it meant trouble - big trouble. “Could it be because my brilliant son had a less than brilliant idea when he got drunk with his friends and nearly killed himself?!” Her icy blue eyes glared at him.
“Nearly killed?! I just sprained my wrist.”
“Shut up,” Leah breathed pretending to ignore the situation as their father walked into the kitchen and gave her a kiss on the cheek.
“J-just sprained your wrist? You’re on the football team, you don’t even know how long you’ll be out for. Not to mention what you and DJ did was just plain irresponsible.”
“Come on, Dad. You were a kid once too, right?”
“I’m staying out of this one, Kiddo.”
“Sorry to cut this short but we gotta get to school,” Leah said grabbing her bag.
“Okay coming.” Nate loved his sister, she always got him out of sticky situations even though she’d been known to get him in a few as well.
“I’m not finished with you young man and I have the perfect punishment for you.”
“What?!” Nate’s jaw dropped. He could only imagine what she had planned.
“Don’t worry, I’ll tell you when you get home that way you can think about what you’ve done all day,” she smiled wickedly.
He gulped, he hated when his mom hung punishments over his head. It made the anticipation unbearable as if it were a game to her. However, he knew he deserved it for calling them in the middle of the night from the emergency room, drunk.
“Hey, what’s with the long face there buddy?” DJ said as he pulled up to give his best friend and his little sister a ride to school.
“What do you think?” Nate waved his wrist showing off his ugly brace.
“Oh, Kora and David gave you the third degree?”
“I thought I told you before not to call my parents by their names?”
“Well, I can’t call them Mom and Dad now can I?” DJ’s hazel eyes twinkled with sarcasm as he ran his fingers through his dirty-blonde hair. The two had been best friends since daycare and he was also on the football team and soccer team. “Well, at least they still don’t know about your tattoos.”
“Yeah, but my mom is making me wait until after school to give me my punishment.”
“Yeesh, that’s no good.”
“Tell me about it, I just want to get over this headache, get through school and get this punishment over with.” Nate grabbed a pair of sunglasses and put them on as DJ drove them to school.
Most of his day blew by. Most teachers knowing Nate was the star quarterback went easy on him once they saw the cast. That is of course except for his Calculus teacher who just so happen to be the coach who enjoyed chewing him out for doing something so monumentally stupid just before play-offs.
Then onto lunch were Amber and DJ spent half the hour going on about how the World Civilization pop quiz they just took shouldn’t count since no one studied for it. Nate stretched before telling them he was going to the library to get some peace and quiet to calm his headache. They all said ‘see ya later’ and he headed out the double doors. As usual the library was completely empty and quiet or so he thought. Five minutes after Nate sat down to take a deep breath and study he kept getting interrupted by a loud shuffling noise and continuous laughter.
“Hold him down!”
Nate jumped out of his chair when he heard a loud smack. He slowly made his way to the back corner that’s when he saw at least four guys in their letter-man jackets with their back turned.
“Shut up... faggot!”
He recognized this voice as Mark Tamen, a senior from the football team.
“Y-you’re hurting me!” a soft voice yelped.
He couldn’t take it anymore so Nate stormed around the shelf and gasped. Aside from Mark there three other seniors had a small guy of maybe sixteen or seventeen pushed down against the ground. Instead of a t-shirt they had forced him into a cheerleaders’ top and were now trying to pull his pants down and put him in the skirt.
“Mike, Come on! Hold him still.” Mark looked menacing with an evil grin across his face and a gleam in his dark eyes. He laughed while the others grabbed at the young guys’ wrists and legs. “You want to stare at my ass and act like a little bitch, I’ll make you look like one.”
“STOP!” Nate yelled.
At first the others ignored him, Mark grabbed what looked like lipstick out of his pocket and began smearing it on the boys’ lips while the boy tried turning away. Mark wasn’t going to let that happened so he grabbed him hard by the chin and smeared it even more. Nate didn’t hesitate this time and didn’t waste his time yelling. He stormed over and grabbed Mark’s hand away from the kid’s face. Mark cried out in pain as Nate nearly crushed his wrist until he had dropped the lipstick like he’d wanted him to. Mike and the others looked at each other confused for a moment knowing that if Nate got pissed off enough they would all be in trouble.
“You three, let him go! NOW!” Mike and others didn’t need to be told twice they let him go. However, the poor kid didn’t run like Nate had hoped. His whole body trembled as a single tear fell down his cheek.
Mark lunged for the kid and that’s when Nate snapped. He didn’t care that Mark outweighed him by fifty pounds and was almost six foot, he punched Mark square in the jaw twice. As he watched him fall to the floor covering his mouth which was now pouring blood, Nate cursed having used the hand that was in a brace to punch him. The three guys standing there with a dumb look on their faces ran out of there with Mark following after still holding his nose.
“I swear I’m gonna make you pay!”
Nate sighed, of course he would never hear the end of this from the coach, his parents or DJ and Amber. He had let his temper catch up with him again and apparently he’d just scared the kid as well because he was no longer around.
“Damn-it!” he jogged out of the exit to the library to try find him. He almost gave up too when he passed a janitor’s closet with the door cracked open just a bit. He pushed the door open and sighed heavily before closing the door behind him. The young boy sat hunched in the far corner with his knees brought close to his chest, with his arms wrapped tightly around them. Tears were running down his face and the cheerleading top was ripped from where he tried taking it off.
“Hey, you okay?” Nate asked. The boy tried pushing himself back trying to go further but he was already against the wall. “It’s alright I won’t hurt you.” Nate grabbed a roll of papertowel and went towards the boy, kneeling in front of him. Of course, he wasn’t trying to scare him but he couldn’t blame the kid for closing his eyes tightly, obviously thinking Nate might hit him. “What’s your name?”
Now that Nate got Liam talking somewhat he figured that Liam wouldn’t be so scared. He used the paper towel to gently wipe the smeared lipstick from the boy’s lips. His thumb brushed against Liam’s bottom lip and he honestly couldn’t get over how soft Liam’s lips were.
“C-can you help me out of this?” Liam pointed to the top Mark had forced on him Nate nodded, he took the bottom of the top in his hands and pulled it up and over his head before tossing it aside.
Feeling a little nervous Liam covered his slim chest by crossing his arms. Then he averted Nate’s eyes and bit his bottom lip nervously. He couldn’t believe someone had actually risked their own neck for him and they were this increasingly handsome.
“Here,” Nate took his shirt off and handed it to him.
He took a deep breath trying to calm his already flustered nerves, first this guy saved him and he was being nice now he was taking off his own shirt for him to wear. However, he instantly shook his head, he caught himself staring at Nate’s perfectly sculpted abs and the few tattoos he had across parts of body. Instead he tried to focus on pulling the shirt over himself then chuckling when he realize that although it fit Nate perfectly showing every muscle on him it was two sizes too big.
“Don’t worry about it, I have another shirt in my locker.”
Uh-oh had he noticed him staring? Liam smiled shyly as Nate helped him to his feet then took his thumbs and wiped the tears from his cheeks away.
Nate smiled at the feel of the boy’s smooth skin and hoped no one else gave the kid a hard time because he seemed nice, just a little on the quiet side but seeing Mark and his goons were constantly on the lookout for punching bags he knew he had to keep an eye on the little guy until they got bored with him. Then Nate furrowed his brow and wondered why he immediately felt so overprotective towards him but instead of putting too much thought into it he just told himself it was the right thing to do.
They exited the janitors closet once Nate checked to make sure Mark and the others were gone. Before leaving Liam turned and hugged Nate who was caught a little off-guard. However, he just patted Liam’s head and walked over to his locker.
“Did I miss something?!” DJ said leaning against the closed locker next to Nate’s.
“What are you talking about?”
“Okay, sure,” DJ rolled his eyes with a sarcastic grin on his face. “So you didn’t just come out of the janitors closet with another guy who is now wearing your shirt?”
Nate honestly didn’t think about it until just then, he laughed. “Oh that kid was just having a bad day so I helped him out, it’s no big deal.” He took a white muscle shirt out his locker and pulled it over his head.
“You know if the principal sees you you’re dead right?”
Nate smirked then turned around knowing that voice anywhere. A short girl with the cutest smile looked up at him, he smiled back taking her hand in his trying to wince from the pain that now coursed through his wrist even with the brace. Then again he probably shouldn’t have used that same hand to punch Mark. “Mark had it coming he was pummeling some innocent kid and I simply stepped in.”
“Well aren’t you a superhero?” she giggled.
“You know it but now the superhero must go home and get grounded.” Nate kissed her on the cheek, he loved how good her cinnamon tan skin felt against his. DJ sighed and told him he was heading to the parking lot. “Well I guess that’s my queue. See you Friday - the usual? Movies and some alone time in your bedroom?”
“Of course,” she winked before heading off towards the library for her AP study lab.
The two were never exclusive but they enjoyed each others time and Nate looked forward to their Friday nights. However, part of him felt guilty because three of them had been friends since he could remember which meant he knew the exact moment DJ began looking at Amber as more than just a friend. Which is a part of the reason Nate and Amber weren’t dating because they both agreed that if they ever broke up it may hurt their friendship - for all three of them. So the two of them wanted to keep it casual just hanging out and occasionally having sex but neither one would mention it in front of DJ because of their best friend’s feelings.
“It took you guys long enough,” Leah said as she and a girl with fiery red curls stood next to DJ’s car. “Hey Mom said Gracie could spend the night. Do you mind giving her a ride, DJ?”
“Nah, it’s no problem. Pile in.”
During the ride home Nate couldn’t help but notice the smile pulling at the corner of his lips. What’s got him all smiles, was it the fact that the day was nearly over or the hug Liam gave him earlier? Sure, it caught him off-guard but he’s a good kid. As DJ pulled up to Leah and Nate’s house their mom was heading to the front door with two large grocery bags. Her long blonde hair was tied up in a tight bun. Nate thanked DJ for the ride and headed over to help his mom.
Kora rolled her eyes when her eldest child came running up to help her with her bags. “I haven’t forgotten your little stunt.”
Nate sighed heavily hoping she’s forgotten all about their little chat that morning. “Fine, what is it? Grounded for two weeks, a month?”
“Nope. Even better,” she grinned.
“What is it?!” he asked partly curious, partly hoping he wouldn’t end up regretting it. They placed the bags on the counter while Leah and Gracie headed up to her room.
“Well, you keep saying how you want to save up for your own car so I found you a way to make some money.”
“Really? Thanks Mom.”
“Don’t thank me just yet. The job is watching a co-worker of mine’s kids.”
“Yeah, they have two kids a girl and a boy and they need you to babysit this Friday. I already said you can do it.”
“What?! I have plans!”
“I know, you’re babysitting.” Kora said placing her hand on her hip.
“Why can’t Leah do it. Isn’t babysitting a girl’s job?”
David, Nate’s father just walked in from work plopping down his briefcase and suit jacket on the couch. Having heard what his son just said he walked into the kitchen. “She’s not the one who’s being punished - you are.”
“Fine whatever!” Nate yelled at his parents. He hated whenever both his parents jumped in on him. He would babysit these twerps and save up enough money to get a car that way every time he wanted to do something they wouldn’t be to stop him. He pulled out his cellphone and immediately texted Amber about the unfortunate news.
NATE : Hey, what's up?
AMBER : Nothing much, just lots of homework. U?
NATE : Have to cancel Friday night, Mom making me babysit.
AMBER : Isn’t Leah a little old 4 a babysitter?
NATE : Not for her, for a work friend of Mom’s, part of my punishment.
AMBER : Awe man. Well, have fun. I’ll see ya later this weekend?
NATE : Yea. Okay, gotta go. Night.
AMBER : Night.
The next day Nate didn’t look forward to the end of the day like he usually did most Fridays. Instead he hoped the day crawled by slowly because he was not planning on babysitting a couple of brats.
“Ow!” a quiet yelp broke his train of thought.
“Oh gosh, I’m sorry,” he leaned forward to pick a pair of glasses that were hanging on by gobs of duct tape. A small hand grabbed his trying to grab the glasses as well and he looked up to see two sparkling dark mocha eyes. A smile played at the lips just below them before they nervously bit their bottom lip. “Liam?”
“H-Hey,” Liam croaked nervously.
Nate sighed he was so involved in his own little world he nearly ran over this kid who hadn’t exactly had the best last few days.
“Oh shit!” A gnarly purple bruise was visible where Mark practically punched Liam the previous day. Unintentionally Nate placed a hand to his cheek.
Liam could feel the color creep up his neck and into his cheek. Why was this guy being so nice? First of all, they didn’t know each other; the guy was obviously a senior while Liam was just a junior. As well, he kept confusing him - was this guy also gay? Was he flirting?
“Are you okay?!” Nate asked, he was concerned when Liam froze. Liam just nodded his head in response.
“You’re too cute. By the way, name’s Nate. Don’t think I got to tell you yesterday.”
“Oh my gosh!” Liam’s heart fluttered when he remembered the shirt he’d been given. He reached inside his book-bag silently cursing at himself for making Nate jump and pull his rough, warm hand away from his cheek. He pulled out a neatly folded white shirt and tried to hand it to Nate.
“Don’t worry about it. Keep it.”
“Yeah,” he patted his head, ruffling Liam’s ebony hair. When he pouted at this Nate grinned.
“Hey, you ready?”
“Huh?” Nate turned to see DJ walking up with Leah following ready to leave school and head home.
Immediately, he pulled his hand away from Liam and looked away from DJ and Leah who were both giving him curious looks.
“Do you need a minute?” DJ asked looking at his friend.
“N-no just seeing if Liam’s okay. Well, see ya Liam. I guess I gotta go.”
“Okay?” Liam looked at Nate wondering why he suddenly changed, a moment ago he was so affectionate and caring now that he was avoiding his gave and inching to leave. The three of them left Liam standing there wondering if maybe he did something wrong or said something.
Nate turned to wave goodbye and instantly regretted it, Liam was slowly turning away headed to the buses. His beautiful eyes filled with pain and confusion. Wait?! Beautiful? Did he just think another boy’s eyes were beautiful? That was okay wasn’t it? Before he had chance to freak out Nate’s phone chirped.
MOM : Running late, sending the address to you. Just have DJ drop you off. Love Mommy.
NATE : Okay
MOM : You forgot something
NATE : Love you too
He shoved his phone back into his pocket once he memorized the address.
“Whoa!” DJ exclaimed when they had finally pulled into the driveway of the house that belonged to the address Nate was given.
“What?” Nate laughed, it was a big house but not much bigger that his.
“Maybe they have a hot nanny?”
“Shut up! Nate rolled his eyes. “If they had a nanny, they wouldn’t need me, dummy!”
Nate groaned before getting out of DJ’s car and heading to the massive front door. He gently rapped on the door with his knuckles. It was only a few seconds before the door was opened and he was invited in.
A tall, gorgeous latina woman answered the door still fumbling with her earrings. Her long dirty-blonde hair lay in thick waves that flowed down her back. A man of at least six feet tall walked up all smiles immediately helping who Nate could only assume was his wife with her earrings. He also had dirty-blonde hair though his skin wasn’t as tan as hers and they both looked like they walked out of a runway show or something.
“So, you’re the one Zoe told me about. Name’s Luke.”
“Yeah, I guess. My name is Nate.”
“I’m Zoe. I work with Kora, your mom.” Nate shook both their hands before Luke disappeared down the hallway. “He’s getting the kids. So you’re a senior?”
“Oh none of that. My name is Zoe.”
“Oh. So what time am I babysitting until?”
“Eleven o’clock should be good.” He nodded his head wanting to scream. After eating dinner before being dropped off if was still only six o’clock which meant five hours watching ankle-biters. “The time should fly by. I promise.”
Obviously she saw his face when she said how late they’d be out. They both turned when footsteps could be heard coming back up the hallway. Oh no! He couldn’t bare it, he wished it was already time for them to come back even knowing they haven’t even left yet.
“Aw, there they are. Our daughter Rochelle and our son...”
A young girl of around thirteen years old walked up to Nate with the biggest smile and wildest curls. Her skin was dark like milk chocolate while her eyes were almost black but that’s not what had Nate’s jaw drop. It was the skinny teenage boy standing behind his dad with a purple bruise on his cheek. His hair ruffled apparently from sleep as Nate realized he was wearing flannel pajama bottoms and ...Nate’s shirt, the one he’d given him just the day before.
Zoe and Luke looked between their son who was nibbling on his thumb nail nervously and Nate who seemed rooted to the spot. “You two know each other?” Luke asked.
“Well, yeah the other -,” Nate stopped himself when he saw Liam shake his head “no” and fidget nervously. Obviously his parents didn’t know the truth of how their son got the bruise on his cheek.
“Yes?” Zoe said crossing her arms over her chest.
“Nothing,” he replied.
“Alright,” Luke gave him a curious look, “Well, we’ll be home around eleven. If you need anything just call us.” He hugged each of his kids even though Liam tried to shrug him off. Then the lovely couple left leaving Nate wondering why they needed an eighteen year old to babysit for a couple of teenagers.
Liam sighed once his parents left. “Thank you,” he whispered to Nate.
“Not telling them about what Mark did to me.”
“It’s cool, don’t worry about it.” For some reason, Liam noticed, that Nate couldn’t take his eyes off of him which made him blush. He looked down and gasped, he was still wearing Nate’s shirt.
“Looks good on you,” Nate said. “You okay?”
“Y-yeah,” Liam cursed quietly hoping the night passed by quickly. There was nothing worse than having the guy he’s been crushing on for the past two days babysitting him.
LouiseJ2: I enjoyed the detail you went into with regards to the case. It made the UNSUB appear believable. The crisis in the middle of the story was my favorite part, very dramatic but not over the top. I feel like sometimes pairings can be overdone but I liked that some of the relationships were a little...
263Adder: Okay so I adore this story. I only knocked one star off plot for historical inaccuracies because I'm a bit of a stickler for that. The ending broke my heart though, considering you already changed history couldn't you (SPOILER) change it a bit more and have them together!!!! I want an alternative...
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Alex Rushmer: This was not what I expected, but I enjoyed it a lot Malfoy was always one of the characters that I liked a lot, so I like that a lot of this happens between him and Colette. I read the first couple chapters, and I enjoyed your writing style and am excited to see where you take this story. My com...
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RiverSong: So, at first glance, I thought this was just going to be like any other werewolf book out there that you could find on Wattpad, but I was intrigued enough with the little bloop that I wanted to read more. Following that weird thing that I call curiosity, I found this thing called an obsession. Th...
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Prasino45: Hi! I happen to see your updated chapter on FF.NET!It happened to be about you coming onto Inkitt with this story! I've been a fan for a while! I'm a scqualphie writer myself. I ship them HARD! Love this story! I'm gonna do a reread as you said you changed some things! Glad we both made the switc...
MavisMcQueen: "To Live Again" is a well crafted, highly engaging, heart vibrating tale surrounding our favorite Elven King. The author will keep you engrossed until the very end and by that time you will feel so strongly for Clara and the other characters that you will never want it to end...like ever. Thrandu...
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Sara Joy Bailey: "Full of depth and life. The plot was thrilling. The author's style flows naturally and the reader can easily slip into the pages of the story. Very well done."