So far, the rest of my stay with the Ferrells had passed by very uneventfully, compared to the first night. Just like Adam had predicted, there were a lot of walks in the estates, which were enormous. They owned literally acres of land, stretching from fields to forests, even owning their own creek.
The second day of my stay, Mr. and Mrs. Ferrell insisted that Adam and I spend some time alone, which in my opinion, was a huge mistake on their part. His parents evidently loved having their son around, who was a really different person away from campus. Around his mother, he was gentle and loving and often I found myself slack-jawed, staring at them sharing a moment, laughing together and clearly very good friends.
It would have taken no effort at all to fall for this new Adam, had I not known about his other side.
Adam was on excellent terms with his father, as well. His entire small family was just perfect in every way – the way they loved each other, cared for each other, how they teased and laughed and just enjoyed the time they had together. Envy and this deep ache in my chest always surfaced whenever I silently watched them. They had something that I’d had a very long time ago, and it was something that I’d missed every day since. Nevertheless, I swallowed those feelings and smiled and pretended to be Adam’s girlfriend so convincingly, that I made it easy for Adam to pretend to be the attentive, loving boyfriend he was supposed to be.
Our act was well done, and I even heard his mother wickedly ribbing Adam about possible marriage, when they didn’t realize I was in the room. As soon as I gave a tiny cough, his mother’s head flew up before she grinned at a suddenly-scowling Adam.
His parents accepted me with open arms, and there was such sincerity and openness in their manner that, despite everything, I found myself relaxing and even enjoying myself around his parents.
Until they suggested the aforementioned alone-time. I finished buttoning a slimming pair of blue jeans and nervously tugged down the short brown riding jacket his mother had given me. Standing in front of the mirror in my given bedroom, I straightened the matching hat.
A knock sounded on my bedroom door and I whirled around to see Adam lounging against the doorframe. He silently looked at me before clearing his throat.
“Ready to go?”
I sighed and scowled before following him out, down the stairs and out the door, Adam leading me to the stables.
I, for the first time in my life, was going horse-back riding. Everything in me warned me against getting on the back of an unfamiliar animal, but admitting that I was scared was by far the less-pleasant option. Adam would never let me live it down, and no doubt I’d have to endure a whole bunch of inappropriate cracks about how I should be used to riding by now, and how it can’t be so very different from... other things that Adam thought I was doing.
His behaviour to me hadn’t changed all too much, but we tolerated each other better for the sake of appearances.
We entered the sudden stillness of the stable. I stood awkwardly in my riding gear, watching the dusty light filter through the setting sun outside. The air was damp, but not unpleasant. It was really peaceful, until a soft nickering reminded me why I was there.
The chills and inner trembling returned. I swallowed as Adam crossed the stable from where he’d been standing behind me, unlatching one of the doors.
|Ashley Greene||as Shawna Roberts|
|Zac Taylor||as Adam Ferrell|
|James Franco||as Joel Torres|
|Jessica Alba||as Esther Hill|
|Tom Welling||as Scott Weston|