Chapter 20

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The second visitor at the door hangs his head down, awaiting to face his younger brother and former-forbidden lover.

Reed stares down at Trip as he currently hovers above him, and seemingly becomes frozen. The lower portion of Trip's body flames with Reed's touch and he too, becomes still.

Another knock sounds louder this time as Beck assumes the pair hadn't heard his first attempt. It finally wakes the two boys from their trance, and Reed releases Trip's hands before climbing off of him.

"He's here," Trip mumbles as he slowly pushes himself up and slides off of his bed. Reed remains sitting on the bed and brings a hand to his face.

"Shit," Reed says to himself as the front door creaks open.

Another pair of footsteps sounds along with Trip as the two make their way to Trip's room. Reed raises his eyes to meet Beck's who meets them briefly before returning them to the ground. It's followed by seconds of awkward silence before Trip huffs and drags his suitcase out of his bedroom, waiting for the others to do the same.

Monica waits alone in Beck's small, red car and Reed and Trip haul their belongings into the trunk beside the married couple's. It's a tight squeeze in the trunk, but an even tighter one in the back row.

Monica swings around, her blond hair cascading over her shoulder, and peers back at the quiet folks sitting behind her. She flashes a warm smile and her blue eyes sparkle at them. Trip forces a grin back as his typical response would be a frown, but knows that would not be appropriate in this situation. Reed, of course, sends his signature wide smile her way and Beck breathes out before speaking.

"That's my brother, Damien," Beck tells her. "And that's..."

Reed waits to hear his name escape Beck's mouth as he pulls out of the driveway, but Monica says it instead.

"Luca," she says, before turning back around. "I've met them both before. Remember? At the lake and at our wedding."

Beck nods his head. "Right."

"And now that I actually think about it, I'm pretty sure I've seen Luca leave our house a few times," she continues unexpectedly.

The three boys remain quiet as tension immediately surfaces.

Finally, nervous laughter sounds accompanied by a voice that stutters a response.

"Haha," Reed laughs. "Beck-"

Reed feels an elbow dig into his side as Trip nudges him, shaking his head, and Reed realizes his mistake.

"Taylor," Reed corrects himself. "And I are coworkers. I used to go there to talk about it with him."

"Oh," Monica says happily. "You don't come around anymore, though."

Reed reaches over and ruffles Trip's dark hair. It's shorter than usual, but he still attempts to make the younger boy mad.

"I've been keeping this kid company," Reed replies to her and smirks at Trip.

Trip sighs. "Who's a kid?"

It makes Reed laugh and he removes his hand from Trip's hair and trails his fingers down Trip's arm. Shivers descend down Trip's arm as he glances over at the twenty-three-year-old. Reed leans close to Trip as he entangles their fingers together and whispers in his ear.

"You are," he answers Trip's question.

Trip uses his free hand to pry Reed's fingers off of his and narrows his eyes in a glare.

"Let go," Trip hisses. He doesn't want his brother to hear.

But Reed just smiles and holds onto Trip's hand who nervously shoots his eyes over to his brother to make sure he isn't watching. Trip surrenders when he realizes Beck's eyes are trained on the road and leans back in his seat.

Reed squeezes Trip's hand and Trip leans against the window, averting his eyes.

And as in every car ride the two have been in together, Trip closes his eyes and drifts off to sleep.


The four travelers reach their destination after a few long hours and Trip wakes up as he hears Beck's door open. His hand is warm and he peers down at it, realizing Reed had never released him.

Though, now Reed is fast asleep.

Trip quickly pulls his hand away before anyone can notice and the sudden movement causes Reed's eyes to open slowly.

"We're here?" he asks Trip who nods before climbing out of the car.

The house is gorgeous and right by the sea. Trip cannot wait to unpack and head over to the ocean.

Monica leads Reed and Trip to a single room with two beds and the two boys drop their luggage to the floor.

Trip immediately begins searching for his swim trunks as Reed plops down on a bed.

"What're you doing?" Reed asks.

"Looking for my swim pants," Trip tells him.

"You're going to the beach now?" Reed questions.

"Mhm," Trip replies as he pulls out his swim trunks.

"Alright," Reed says with a smile. "I'm in."

Trip lies his swim shorts on his bed and turns around to face Reed.

"Don't look," Trip tells him.

It makes Reed laugh as he digs for his pants.

"You're a child," Reed says. "Just drop 'em like it's hot."

"What?" Trip says with a frown.

Reed laughs again and begins to pull down his shorts as Trip quickly turns away.

"I won't look," Reed assures him as he changes.

Trip sighs before pulling down his shorts and changes into his swim trunks.

Once they're both changed, the two practically run out of the house without a word to Beck or Monica.

The instant Trip's feet meet the sand, he takes off in a sprint. Reed quickly follows suit and says, "Race you to the water."

Trip accepts the challenge and sprints toward the ocean but Reed quickly takes the lead. He splashes in the water ahead of Trip and smiles widely as Trip enters the sea.

"I win," Reed boasts.

"Yeah, yeah," Trip says.

"What're you going to give me?" Reed asks as he runs a hand through his hair.

Trip scrunches his eyebrows. "What?"

"What do I get for beating you?" Reed inquires again.

Trip's lips curve up in a grin and it takes Reed by surprise.

"I'll give it to you later."

I wrote this chapter and it didn't save so I had to rewrite it. Sorry if it came out bad lol

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