Chapter Twenty-three - William

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Jacob and I got into it... again. Maybe I'm asking too much of him. Perhaps I should end it now before one of us gets seriously hurt. The instant I thought about it, my chest ached. Why can't he understand? Alex just buried that bastard. Who knows what memories it caused him to relive? I know it's plagued my mind. I couldn't see how Alex would be any different.

To spring on Alex that I'm in a new relationship felt wrong. Yet, hiding Jacob from him felt wrong, too. I wish... oh, who cares what I wish? Now is not the time, and Jacob is going to have to get over it.

Cat, however, never misses a beat.

"Everything okay?"

I refuse to talk about it. "Yeah, fine."

She chose not to press and I'm grateful.

"Alex called. He should be home in about 30 minutes. I'll start the stir-fry."

I followed Cat into the kitchen and took a seat at the counter. "So, how is he doing, really?"

"He's holding up." Cat bustled around the kitchen gathering her ingredients and washing up the vegetables before she diced them. I'd offer to help but I'm useless in a kitchen. I waited for her to continue and when she didn't, I knew something was up.

"Did something happen while you were there?"

Her shoulders slumped. "Yes, no. Not really. This week has been a whirl wind, so much has happened yet at the same time nothing has changed. It feels... weird. Like we're standing in the eye of a storm, waiting for it to get us and at the same time praying it will pass us by."

"You've lost me."

She opens her mouth to say something but nothing comes out. She simply shrugged and got back to cooking. The less she said the more concerned I became. Perhaps, this was something I'll need to take up with Alex, instead.

Delicious smells were wafting through the house. There is a knock on the door and Cat sprinted across the room to answer it. I half expected them to fall down the stairs together when Cat tackles Alex the moment the door opens. Instead, I get to watch them make out in the hall.

"Seriously, Cat? Get a room, you two. Please, before I lose my appetite."

Alex picked up his bag and Cat's suitcase and moved them inside the apartment. He had to toss them aside in order to catch her. "Nice to see you, too," he told me with a grin.

I couldn't help rolling my eyes. It feels strange being the third wheel. "Thanks for noticing."

Alex's eyes grow wide as he enters the apartment. He looks at Cat and then back at me. "It was all her, idea," I said pointing to Cat.

All too soon they are back to smooching again. Ugh. I feel jealous watching them. The fact that I've been worried sick about him, spent my entire afternoon here, landing myself in a fight with Jacob, means nothing, of course.

"Hey, I helped too! Where's the love?"

Alex pulls away and waves for me to join their hug. Even though I know I'm intruding I couldn't care less. We all stood there hugging for several seconds until Alex broke free.

"Thank you! I can't believe you did this for me."

Cat's eyes shimmered with unshed tears. Looks like she made the right decision to bring his stuff back.

"I remembered your face when we first walked in here yesterday. You looked so... misplaced. The same way you looked when I packed your stuff away when I moved my stuff in. I couldn't bear it. So, I called William to help me get your stuff out of the storage unit. Since he still had the key, it made it super easy."

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