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Without a care in the world she saunters up to the stadium and takes a seat next to me. Camille and Asher are nowhere to be found and all the other lovey doveys have us looking at each other side- eyed.

"We never did this right?" I ask mortified as Mia feeds Brandon a strawberry.

"Of course not." She doesn't sound very sure.

A glance the other direction reveals Boston helping Lauren with her homework. I stopped listening to Sam and Ollie's conversation long ago.

"Why don't you try?" Sam throws a grape at me. I come back from my dissociation and glare.

"Try what." I give him the finger.

"Lacrosse." Ollie chimes in, always the peacekeeper.

"Oh yes! That would be such a good idea Liam! A perfect way to hang out more with our friends." Evie adds her approval.

At the word lacrosse, both Brandon and Boston are forced to focus more on us and less on the side hoes.

"Funny." I laugh at them.

"No you should do it, Davis." Boston says after some thought. "What day you cap?"

"Stop fucking calling me that." Brandon hisses. "Tryouts are next week, only one way to find out."

Lauren murmurs something about school spirit, but I evade giving a clear answer. I don't know if I want to do that. Me and a healthy outlet for my emotions never did seem right together.

I let out a breath when the bell rings for fifth. Everyone offers muffled goodbyes and walks down the stone steps. I stand with Evie and she catches my hand when we reach the bottom.

"You don't have to, it's not a big deal if you don't want to."

"I do. I'll do it if you promise to wear my number ." I wink.


My face splits in a smile and I wave, disappearing around the corner.


Evie slides off my bike like she did this morning and yawns. Ash ran off to feed Camille soup or some shit and so here we are in the Brookdale parking lot. The tension is thickening.

Stupid Rich Bitch and his dumb—well I can't say anything bad about Camille really. What the hell? I can in fact think head first instead of dick first.

"You don't have to come up if you don't want." I offer. Thanks head.

"Come on, I haven't seen Audrey Rose in a while. Besides, we need to work on English." She grabs my hand and ends the conversation.

The Asian Desk Lady looks up curiously when we walk into the lobby and I muster an innocent smile.

Before I know it, I'm sitting on my ass surrounded by notes and pens while Evie rocks the baby. I purse my lips and try to keep my mind from wandering to dark places. Cough cough the friend zone. She begins her essay and I set pen to paper.


"... And so in conclusion, careful analysis of Woolf's excerpt has shown the many opportunities that both were and weren't available to victorian-era women. I've tied in analysis tools from unit three, historical fiction from unit five, and my projection is from unit eight: poets and poetry."

"Is that all?" I remark with a huff.

I struggled to follow her fast pace but ended up finishing well enough.

"Mmnn!" She sticks her tongue out and gives me the bird.

"No, fuck you." I smile back.

"Don't make me take a swing at you." She jokes.

"She's asleep now." I stand and brush my jeans off a bit.

Little Audrey Rose lay peacefully against Evie's chest and I tersely scooped up my sister from her arms. Pulling her socks off I walk over to the crib. She'll get too hot with them on, and kick them off anyways.

"That's my girl," I whisper, setting her down gently. Her eyes stay closed and I thank the fucking lord. With her lamb tucked under one arm she dozes.

"It should be illegal to be that cute." Evie comes up beside me, leaning over the crib.

"She's pretty fucking adorable, but if beauty is the crime then you can expect life without parol." I say.

We look into each other's eyes for a moment. It feels like longer, but it couldn't be. I regret it the moment I do it, but I take a step in her direction.

I'm instantly on cloud 9 just being near her, and every part of me screams to step back, but I'm reaching for her cheek despite it. Fuck.

She closes the distance and kisses me back though, and her lips are so familiar. The shape of her is so comforting, and damn she smells fantastic.

God fucking damnit! Stupid bitch-ass pussy shit!

She pushes me away with tears in her eyes and she runs from the nursery. I chase after her, yelling for her to wait.

She doesn't listen.

I glance between her figure in the elevator and the baby behind me back in the apartment. Fuck. I watch the doors close and step back into the foyer.

Nice going, Liam.

As soon as I go back to the hall, Audrey Rose starts to fuss.



Stupid asshole! Sneaks to my room, reads my letters, kisses me, calls us friends, drives me around, calls us friends, and the we kiss again.

My heart races as I run the few blocks home from Brookdale. Before long I'm turning the corner in front of my house.

It's not exactly surprising, but within seconds I'm falling into a spell. My body goes limp and my eyes close.


I wake up in bed, Brandon's hovering over me with a concerned look on his face. A quick assessment shows nothing broken nothing bruised.

"What happened, E?" He asks.

"Nothing. Tell mom I'm going to bed early," I shoo him out.

I stare at the ceiling pensively until sleep takes me. I don't stir a bit. All night I sleep, as if being prepared for a difficult tomorrow.

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