Chapter 26- Hope
Shit. Shit. Shit.
What the fuck was Arden thinking angering Cassy like that? And then leaving me here all by myself with her? He just unleashed the devil and he is going to leave me to fend for myself? Bastard.
Although, he hasn’t really had a chance to process Cassy still being here. This is the first time he has actually seen her this way with his own two eyes. Hell, he didn’t even faint. I guess that puts him one up on me. The fucker.
Shaking my head, I turn towards Cassy. She is stood, still in place where Arden left her just looking up the stairs. I couldn’t tell if she was about to blow up or if she was going to burst out crying. I didn’t prefer either, but if I had to choose, I would choose tears any day.
I don’t think I can handle her coming at me with a knife. Partially because, I can’t fucking touch her to get her off of me. I go straight through her, and vice versa. Which- in all honesty, doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. How is it possible for Cassy to touch Abby without going straight through her? I’ll have to research some more on that one.
Another minute passes, Cassy still hasn’t moved. Has she even blinked? I let out a sigh, and move closer to her. “Cass?” I try to sound soothing. She is still my sister Well... In a way.
She finally breaks her gaze with where Arden last was. Her eyes fill with tears as realization dawns on her. She wraps her arms around herself and whispers quietly. “He’s completely over me... He’s moved on.”
The brotherly instinct hits me full force when I hear the shakiness of her voice, making me want to hug her. Tell her that everything will be alright, but the honest truth is, I don’t know that. I don’t know what will happen once she passes over, I’m not completely sure what is awaiting her. I’d like to think that she is going to a better place, or maybe she will just finally be at peace and no longer exist?
Whatever it is, I’m not sure. I let out another deeper sigh. “Cass, he had moved on a long time ago. I think we all have. You left years ago, and while we still all miss and love you, we had to figure out how to live without you. Our lives didn’t get set on pause all these years like yours.” I was trying my best not to anger her, but I know deep down she needs to hear these words.
“We are here to help you get the peace that we had to work out for ourselves when you died.” She was staring at me, tears rolling down her cheeks. Cassy sucks in a deep breath, before nodding.
“I know. It just really hurts seeing him happy with her.” She cries. Nodding, I shrug. “Yeah, but he deserves this, Cassy. He deserves to be happy, and you need to let him be.”
I could tell that my words were affecting her and I knew I had gotten through to her on another level. I just hope she doesn’t lose this control she seems to have now. I can only hope...
Arden and I are laying on my bed. He is absentmindedly running his fingers up and down on my side. It tickles a little bit causing goosebumps to rise up on my arms, but I wasn’t going to tell him because I could feel that he was in deep thought.
Neither one of us has said anything since we got up here and honestly, I’m growing impatient. I know I should give him space to clear his mind, hell I need to clear mine, but I am dying to know what he is thinking.
I think the whole evening with Cassy showing up, trying to kill me with a knife and everything was a bit much to handle. Not to mention, I don’t believe that Arden truly, one hundred percent believed Charlie and I when we told him Cassy was still here.
Exhaling, I turn my attention to him again. Studying his features. His eyes are glazed over as he zones out and he keeps biting on his bottom lip in thought. His brows will furrow and then relax and repeat.
Finally having enough, I ask softly. “What are you thinking about?” He blinks at the sound of my voice, tuning back into the world. Arden bites his lower lip once more, contemplating what to say.
“I just can’t believe she’s actually still here. I-” He shakes his head. “I can’t believe she came at you with a knife! This is all so surreal.” I nod understandingly, willing him to continue.
“Fuck, Abby. I could barely breathe when we took you to the hospital, and then when Cassy came at you with that knife it was like my whole body screamed at me to do something. To protect you... But, she went right through my grasp.” He looks pained as he tries to voice out his thoughts. His brows furrowing in disappointment at himself, as he asks.
“Abby, how am I supposed to protect you from something that I can’t even touch? My words will only do so much, and even so, for how long?” He glares down at the blanket, before running his hand through his hair in frustration.
Tears were circling in my eyes. I was worried that he was reflecting and maybe even receiving some of his old feelings for Cassy back, and here he was, worrying about me and my wellbeing. How the hell did I get so lucky as to get Arden’s attention?
I turn onto my left side to face him, careful of my injuries. I wrap my arm around him, massaging the base of his neck with my fingers. I could feel the little shiver that ran through him at my action and I suppressed every part of me that wanted to close the distance between us and place my lips on his. “Arden, we will get through this. I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have said anything about the stairs.”
I let out a heavy sigh, the guilt weighing on me. Arden wraps his arm around my back, pulling me closer to him. He leans down, placing his head in the crook of my neck as his breath blows hot against the sensitive skin as he speaks. “Don’t apologize. It had to be talked about, and you have every right to be angry about what happened.”
We stay silent for a few moments, just holding each other and breathing each other’s scents in. He smells so incredibly good, and if I were a dog, I’d be rubbing myself all over him to get his smell all over me.
When Arden finally pulled back, he moved just far enough to where we could look into each other’s eyes. His eyes darting down to my lips before leaning forward ever so slightly. I let him close the gap between us and as soon as our lips touch, a small sound of relief leaves me.
He presses his lips more firmly against mine, seeming to let the kiss melt away his stress. His muscles relax as our kiss takes our worries of the day and tosses them out of mind. When we were both out of air, he settles his head against mine, his eyes swirling with determination. He whispers four words as if he just found the cure for all of our problems.
“Move in with me.”