Chapter 16

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More days pass by slowly since the lunch was had between the three boys and Trip finds himself inevitably bored due to the lack of missions at the moment. He stares up at his ceiling as he seemingly always does and ponders on what to do with the rest of his day. He considers going back to sleep out of boredom until he hears his cellphone buzz on the ground beside his mattress.

He groans as he reaches down to scoop it up and flips it open, checking for the caller ID. It's his brother, Taylor.

"Hello?" Trip answers shortly.

"Hey," Beck says. "How've you been?"

Trip squints his eyes. "Since when did you check up on me?"

Beck laughs. "Jesus, Trip. I've gotta check up on my little brother once in a while."

"Right," Trip mutters to himself.

"Do you have anything going on next week?" Beck asks him.

Trip leans the phone in between his neck and shoulder and bends his fingers back on both hands, cracking them.

"No," Trip says. "Boss said there hasn't been anything recently."

"I heard," Beck says. "How about you come with me then?"

"Where?" Trip asks.

"On vacation," Beck says and Trip knows his brother is grinning on the other end but he frowns.

"Are you using Monica's money?" Trip says.

"No," Beck dismisses. "It was her idea. And she wants you to come."

"Weird," Trip says as he pushes himself up. "Where to?"

"Her parents have a house down in Virginia by the beach," Beck says. "There's two vacant rooms at the moment."

Trip stays silent for a few moments.

"Are you happy?"

He doesn't reply to Beck's offer.

"What?" Beck asks.

"With your decision," Trip continues. "Your marriage."

"Oh," Beck says. "Yeah."

Trip doesn't believe him.

"Right," Trip says with a shake of his head as his brother reassures him once more.

He thinks about the proposed vacation and looks up at his ceiling again. He'd most likely never get the chance to go again and needs time for himself. He also remembers when Reed had ridden on his bike a few days prior and how he expressed the desire to go on vacation. He smiles.

"Can I bring someone?" Trip questions.

"You have someone in mind?" Beck asks, most likely shocked.

"Yeah," Trip says. "He's been wanting to get away."

"Well, sure," Beck says. "I'll let Monica know."


And with that, the call ends and Trip breathes out a long sigh. He's surprised that Beck didn't ask for the identity of the person who'd be tagging along and hops off of his bed. He begins his routine in the bathroom before he heads outside into the hot summer day.

He hears crickets and cicadas making their music as his foot taps the kickstand from under his bike. His white t-shirt wrinkles in the wind created through his ride and after a few minutes, he arrives at his destination.

He walks up a few small steps and knocks twice on a wooden door. It's large and red, and a blonde-haired boy opens it.

His eyes widen upon seeing his visitor before a smile instantly spreads across his lips.

"Trip," Reed says, stepping aside to allow him in.

"Hey," Trip says, walking into Reed's home. His shoulder grazes Reed's by accident but he doesn't dote on it.

"Why are you here?" Reed questions as the two make their way over to a pair of couches by a lone television.

Trip frowns. "Are you disappointed?"

Reed laughs. "Of course not. It's a nice surprise."

Trip smiles lightly. "Ever been to Virginia?"

Reed crinkles his nose. "No. I've never left Connecticut."

"Me neither," Trip says. "Wanna go?"

"What do you mean?" Reed asks. "We don't have the money for that."

"Beck does," Trip says as Reed's eyes widen again.

"What?" he asks, confused.

"Monica's parents own a house down there," Trip explains. "He said I could bring someone."

Reed raises an eyebrow as he sports a lop-sided grin.

"And you've chosen me?" Reed asks.

Trip shrugs. "You mentioned it a few days ago. You know, going on vacation."

Reed softly pushes Trip's shoulder. "So you listen to what I say?"

"Yeah?" Trip says to which Reed giggles.

"Thanks," Reed says. "When are we going?"

"So you're coming?" Trip says. "It's next week."

"Ay," he says. "Can't wait."

Trip considers the relationship between Reed and his brother and glances over at him. Was he going to be alright? Would things just be awkward between the two?

"I know," Reed says before Trip can reply. "You're probably thinking about Beck."

Trip remains quiet.

"I'm fine now," Reed says. "I've grown past that. It's better this way."

Trip nods his head. "Okay."

"Thanks for thinking about me," Reed says. "In more ways than one."

Trip presses his eyebrows together. "You're the only person I could've asked so don't get any ideas."

Reed laughs. "Sure."

Trip stands to take his leave when he's halted.

"Where are you going?" Reed asks him.

"Home," he answers simply.

"Stay over."

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