Curly Headed Cutie

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Chp. 28: "you deserve an explanation"

I pour cupcake batter into the cups, smelling the delicious strawberry and lemon mixture. Suddenly, arms wrap around me from behind.

I giggle as Travis plants soft kisses on my neck, and nibbles at my ear. I look back at him as he grins seductively at me.

“Hey, beautiful,” He murmurs within my ear. “Travis, you’re supposed to be helping me make cupcakes not being all flirty,” I state, playfully glaring at him.

“Yeah?” He replies, huskily. He leans and whispers within my ear, “I-

~~~~~~

My eyes fly open, and I swallow hard, feeling extremely sweaty. My heart beats quickly and loudly, as I blush profusely.

What the hell was that dream!?!

I gnaw on my bottom lip, thinking about what was potentially about to happen.

Travis was...

My blush deepens, and I bring my hands to my face.

Lord...

Suddenly, arms wrap around my waist, pulling me close. I stifle yelp, as I hear, “Tiffany...” I tense up, as I feel his lips on my ear and he sighs happily, “you smell good~ ”

I look over my shoulder and find Travis sound asleep, a soft smile on his face. My eyes widen, as he continues to pull me closer, his face buried into my hair in the crook of my neck. My heart rate increases, and I begin sweating bullets.

TRAVIS REEL IS CUDDLING ME!!!!

I REPEAT!!!

TRAVIS REEL IS CUDDLING ME!!!

I take a deep breath, and just try to move away so his head isn’t in the crook of my neck. I try to pry his fingers from around me. I scoot away and he begins to stir awake, groaning. He pulls me back into him and I yelp, we now skin to skin.

Wait...

He’s shirtless?

....

I look back and notice his bare shoulder and arm. My heart nearly stops as I take notice of his naked, toned torso.

Oh shit...

“AGHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!” I scream, and Travis jumps awake.

“AHHHHHH!!!” He screams, unwrapping his arms from around me and falling off the bed, “SHIT!!”

He lands on the floor with a loud thud, hitting his head on the wall. The grey/white pillows, white sheets, and silver blankets fall off the bed with him; landing on top of him.

I quickly sit up, grabbing my glasses and slipping them onto my face. I crawl across the bed and look over at him.

“Where da fuck...” He groans, rubbing his face, the shirt I had given him the night before next to him.

Why did he take it off?!?

He peeks up at me from under his hand, glaring, “WHAT THE HELL, TIFFANY!!!”

“YOU WHAT THE HELL!!” I retort, still flustered, “WHAT HAPPENED TO YOUR SHIRT?!? AND WHY WERE YOU CUDDLING ME?!!”

Not that that either of those things bother me...

“I TOOK IT OFF!!!” He retorts, face stern, “AND WHAT CUDDLING??!”

“YOU WERE CUDDLING ME?!! THIS SIDE OF THE BED WAS YOURS?!! AND WHY WOULD YOU TAKE YOUR SHIRT OFF?!?!” I ask, eyes wide with confusion.

“BECAUSE IT’S HOT IN THIS DAMN ROOM!!! DO YOU NOT BELIEVE IN AIR-CONDITIONING?! AND WHY AM I EVEN IN YOUR ROOM IN YOUR BED?!!!!”

I open my mouth to say something else, and suddenly he gasps, face reddening, “Did we...you know...”

He then makes a circle using his fingers and sticks his finger in it repeatedly.

OMG!!!!

NO!!!! NO!!!!

“NOOOOO!!!!” I shout, blushing profusely, “None of that happened last night!”

Suddenly, there’s banging at the door, and we both jump, looking toward it. The doorknob twist and turns rapidly as Daniel and Dad shout, “TIFFANY!! WHAT’S GOING ON!!! WHY’S YOUR DOOR LOCKED?!?”

“Shit!!” Travis and I say in unison.

I hop out of bed and run over to the other side. Travis sits up as I grab the blankets, “What are you going to-” “Stay down!” I whisper-shout, pushing him back onto the floor.

He yelps in shock, as I toss the blankets over his face. “Hold as still as possible and be quiet!” I whisper harshly, as the loud knocking and banging continues.

I cover him up and run over to my door. I fix up my hair and adjust my glasses. I pull at my tank top and shorts, and unlock the door pulling it open, plastering on a fake smile, “Yeah?”

Both Dad and Daniel stare at me breathlessly, worry in their eyes. They both barge into my room and I nearly scream.

Please don’t find Travis...

Please don’t find Travis...

“WHO’S IN HERE WITH YOU?! WHERE ARE THEY?!” Daniel yells searching my room with surprising speed.

“Daniel-”

“Don’t worry, sweetheart, we’re here for you!!” Dad interrupts, digging through my closet, “Where is he!?! Where’s the piece of shit that hurt you?!”

“No! Dad!” I yelp, grabbing his arm. He looks back at me, and I simply shake my head, “It’s okay! I just had a nightmare, that’s all...”

LIES.

If only that were true...

“Oh...” Dad sighs with relief, his shoulders becoming less tense. He then pulls me into a hug, and I yelp, “Good lord, Ani, you scared me. I thought someone had broken in...”

“You just had a nightmare???” Daniel asks, relaxing, walking over. I nod, awkwardly, and he groans, rubbing his face, “What the fuck...”

“Daniel.” Dad hisses, reaching over and smacking him upside the head.

Daniel jumps, rubbing his head, “AHH! Dad!”

“Stop all that cussin’, boy,” Dad grumbles, shooting him a look, pulling me back into his embrace. “All I said was Fuck,” Daniel replies, and Dad rolls his eyes.

“That don’t mean nothin’!”

He then looks down at me, grabbing my shoulders. His eyes grow serious, “You okay? What was the dream about? You’re not having those dreams about Mom again, right?”

“No, Dad, it’s okay. I just had a bad dream about school, that’s all...” I reply, feeling slightly on edge.

Travis is on the other side of my bed...

Lord, I pray that he doesn’t fart, or do anything loud...

“Okay...good...as long as you’re okay....” Dad replies, sighing. He rubs his face, scratching his black-grey beard, “I was dead asleep when you screamed...it almost sounded like someone else was in here...”

If only you knew...

“No, just me! Sorry,” I say, pushing up my glasses. “How come your door was locked? You never lock your door,” Daniel asks, crossing his arms.

The question I dreaded the most...

“Oh! Well, ” I reply, thinking of a good excuse. I glance behind them, and notice Travis peeking his head over the bed.

I widen my eyes, as he looks from Dad to Daniel and then to me. He stares at me with a knowing look, and I mouth, ‘Stay. Down.’

He narrows his green eyes at me and mouths, ‘Where’s my shirt’?

I shrug slightly, and Dad and Daniel notice. “What are you looking at?” Daniel asks, turning around. Travis drops back down to the floor as Dad also looks.

“Sorry!” I quickly yelp and they look back at me, “Got lost in thought! I guess I locked it while half-sleep! I did get up to use the bathroom last night...”

I’m praying that I sound believable...

“Oh...” Dad mumbles, nodding in understanding. “Well...” Daniel replies, sighing, “I’m glad everything’s all right....”

Not as much as I am...

“Yeah, same...and since we’re all awake now, ” Dad yawns, and Daniel does the same, “I think you all should go ahead and get ready for school.”

Daniel whips around to look at him as he walks out, “Woah! Wait! Dad!”

Daniel follows close behind him, protesting, “Dad, it’s like 6 in the morning!” They walk down the hall toward Dad’s room, and I quickly jog to my door and close it.

I let out a sigh of relief, pressing my head against the door.

Jesus...

“Woah! Black Lace???” Travis says, and I whip around. Travis stands up, holding my black bra in his hand, staring at it in awe, “I didn’t think you were that type of girl, but clearly I was wrong. Way wrong...40c’s? Wow...”

I DON’T NEED HIM LOOKING AT MY BRA SIZE?!?

HOW DID HE EVEN GET THAT?!

My face burns up as I yelp, “WHAT THE HELL?!” I grab my slide off the floor near my door and chuck it at his face.

Immediately, he drops the bra and ducks covering his head as the slide smacks the wall, hard. I shout, flustered, “The hell are you doing with my bra, you perv!?!”

“I wasn’t purposely trying to look at your bra!! I just found it on the floor under all of these blankets and sheets!!” Travis explains, raising his hands, innocently.

I’m surprised his head isn’t throbbing from last night...

Suddenly, Travis tenses up. He groans with pain, and face plants onto the bed, “Damnnnnnn...”

Spoke too soon, lol.

“Oh fuck...my head feels like someone is doing the Irish Jig on it...” He says, voice muffled by the sheets.

“Hold on. I can get you something for that,” I reply, sighing, still flustered. I scurry off to my bedroom door and pull it open. Stepping out, I close it behind me, taking a deep breath.

I walk down the hall to the bathroom, stepping onto the cold tiled floor. I walk up to the mirror and stand a little on my tippy toes. I pull it open, revealing all types of pain medication, and grab the ibuprofen.

I close it and turn to walk out and find Dad standing in the doorway. I yelp, stumbling back, “AGH! Dad! Hey!”

He looks to the bottle in my hand and his brows furrow, “You okay? What hurts??”

I look at the bottle in my hand and back at him, “Oh! Yes! Um...I have...a, uh...”

Say headache!

Say headache!

“Bel-headache...”

WTF.

*Jumps out imaginary window*

“Bel-headache?” Dad asks, confused. I nod, laughing nervously, “Yeah! It’s a girl thing!!”

“Or is it code for something else?! Don’t tell me you’re pregnant!” Daniel shouts, peeking his head in, shirt hanging off his body, “I knew you were into guys, but I didn’t think-”

“Daniel! No, I’m not pregnant!!!” I protest, shifting my gaze to him. Stepping back, I ask genuinely concerned, “Why would you think that?!”

“You and Travis sure hang out a lot...I just thought-” “We’re just friends!!!” I interrupt, blushing, clutching the bottle of ibuprofen to my chest.

Despite the kiss we shared at the party...

And him telling me he loves me...

But those two times where either one or the both of us were tipsy and wasted.

So yeah! We’re just friends!!!

No matter how bad I would like for us to not be...

“And I haven’t done that with anyone!!!” I explain, feeling offended, “I know how to keep it in my pants, unlike someone!”

“Woah!” Dad chimes in, shaking his head, “I didn’t want to know which one of my kids has done the devil’s tango and which one hasn’t.”

“I don’t like that she’s bullying me!!” Daniel whines, nudging Dad’s shoulder, “I say you should send her to school and let me stay home...”

“What does that have to do with anything I’ve said to you??” I ask, dumb struck by his words. Dad shakes his head, walking into the bathroom.

He wraps his arm around me, staring Daniel dead in the eye, “If Tiffany doesn’t feel good, she can stay home but you can’t.”

“WHAT!”

Well, this just took a turn...

“Dad, I’m sure she’s fine. Just look at her,” Daniel claims, gesturing to me.

“She said her Bel-headaches. I’m not sure what that is, but Tiffany says it’s a girl thing. And I’m sure she wouldn’t lie to me.”

*Instant guilt*

“But Dad-” “You don’t have to go to school today, Tiffany,” Dad says, leaning over and planting a kiss on my forehead.

He then looks to Daniel unwrapping his arm from around me, “Now go! Get dressed! You don’t have all morning.”

“THIS AIN’T EVEN FAIR, BRUH!!!” Daniel cries, frustrated. He stomps down the hall and slams his room door shut. Dad rolls his eyes and looks back to me, “I’m about to head out to get a few things for work. Need anything?”

“Nope,” I shake my head, and Dad smiles. “Alright, Ani. If you need anything, just give me a call, okay?”

“Will do!” I respond, and Dad walks out.

′ Will do?′

Who says that?!

I let a sigh of relief and find myself thinking about what Dad had said only moments ago.

Well...doesn’t look like I’m going to school today...

And stuck with Travis in my house...

I swallow hard at that thought and shuffle to my room as quickly as possible. I walk in and close my door behind me as Travis whines.

I roll my eyes at his dramatics as he continues to groan, “Fuck...I’m never, ever, ever, ever, never, ever touching alcohol again...”

I snort at that and mutter under my breath, rolling my eyes, “Right...”

I can imagine how many times he’s told himself that...

“Yeah, well, that’s what happens when you drink lots of it, get wasted, and pass out,” I state, walking a little closer to the bed.

I toss the bottle of painkillers at him, and he jumps as they land on his back, rattling, “AHHH! That’s cold!”

I giggle as he reaches onto his back and grabs the bottle. He pops off the cap and pours two pills onto his hand, tossing them into his mouth.

He glances up at me, his soft green eyes meeting mine, and a soft smirk spreads across his face, “Did I drive here drunk???”

I nod, slicking a strand of my hair behind my ear, “Yep. Nearly gave me a heart attack...”

“Aww, you care about me...” He chirps, smile softening.

I roll my eyes, taking the bottle of ibuprofen from him, and screwing the cap back on, “Anyone would care if a drunk man came to their house at midnight speaking a bunch of gibberish.”

“Yeah, well you still care for my wellbeing, don’t you, Ani?”

“Stop.”

He chuckles, and I simply roll my eyes, “In all seriousness, Travis. I’m glad nothing happened to you. You could’ve seriously hurt someone else, or yourself. Or, hell, had done both. None of what you did last night was dismissive.”

I sigh, looking down at my lap, “Just...promise me that you won’t do that again? I don’t want...what happened to me or...what happened to my mom...when we got into an accident, happening to you. Or anyone for that matter. I don’t want to see you hurt. So yes, I care about you and your safety. And please promise me you won’t do that again...”

I still remember the distinct smell of burnt rubber, and the IV tubes that were hooked to me...

I remember all of that...

And I wouldn’t ever wish that on my worst enemy...

His face softens with guilt, as I look back up at him feelings tears come to my eyes at the thought of my mom.

“Yeah...I promise I won’t...”

“Thank you...” I reply, nodding a little, “Now...” I take a deep breath, adjusting my glasses, “Do you...remember...anything from last night??”

He pauses thinking, “Ummm...I remember really wanting to see you yesterday...despite already being tipsy...and drunk driving is kind of illegal...”

Kind of illegal?

Even when he’s drunk, he’s persistent...

Not to mention, hardheaded...

Walking over and sitting at the edge of the bed in front of him, I cross my arms,

He pauses, thinking. Suddenly he frowns, “Yeah? Why? Did I do any stupid shit?”

“I wouldn’t say any of it was stupid, just drunk boy things,” I reply, awkwardly, and he groans.

He sits up slowly, bringing his hands to his face, thinking, “Now that you mention it...I do remember something else...I remember telling you that I felt...bad. I remember that, but everything else is kind of a blur...”

“Well, to sum it all up, ” I reply, playing with my fingers, “You drove here drunk, then you told me you were quitting street-fighting for me? I didn’t know you did that, but here we are. Then, you insisted on driving back home so, I had to convince you into staying so you wouldn’t hurt yourself. Then, you started smelling my hair and saying a lot of things about my face. Then, I took you to the bathroom because you said you were going to piss yourself and then threw up out of my window. Then, you got in bed and started telling me a bunch of stuff about how you felt and why you didn’t come to school yesterday. You telling me how you needed to me tell me something about yourself but was scared...then told me you love me, and passed out...”

Holy cow, that was a mouthful...

Travis stares at me, shocked, “Well, shit...I did all of that?”

I nod, and he blushes bright red, “That’s, um...embarrassing...”

“I’m embarrassed for you...” I whisper, and he his face into his hands. He groan again, “Damn...”

There’s a moment before he suddenly says, “I’m starting to remember some of that...kind of...”

His looks up, eyes meeting mine, “I remember the last few things...I remember throwing up. I remember telling you how I felt bad...but the last part...I have no recollection of that...”

Figured...

“Well...with the stuff you do remember, why did you say that?” I ask, pushing up my glasses, “I mean, the part where you were saying you were scared to tell me something??”

He sighs, leaning back against the headboard. He stares up at the ceiling, thoughtfully, “Well...you deserve an explanation...”

I stare at him, the room suddenly feeling tense as he mumbles, “In short, Andrea isn’t my biological Mother...”

I raise a brow in confusion, as he looks to me, continuing, “And Samantha isn’t my biological sister...”

I continue to stare at him, still trying to make sense of what he’s saying, “They’re not...your biological family??”

“No...” He says, shaking his head softly. He then smiles, awkwardly, “Tiffany...I’m adopted, and...I’m pretty I knew your mom.”

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