Chapter Seven

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"I wanna close my eyes and hide from reality. The dream world is where I belong."


What was I thinking?

No, that was the very problem - I wasn't thinking when I threw that ball.

"Oh, gosh, Jacob. I'm so sorry." My hand flew over my mouth, masking the pure shame on my face. The baseball was now rolling down the driveway, taunting me every inch it moved. 

My brother shook his head, his typical relaxed smile gleaming in the sunlight. For a guy who has been through one hell of a year, he never failed to be in a pitcher mood. If I were in his shoes I probably wouldn't even find the energy to do daily things, yet alone drive back into town and throw around a baseball with my little sister. 

"It's okay. I'll get it." Jacob started. I frowned. "Ugh, no, Lucy. You don't have to get it." I ignored him and ran over to get the ball. "I am perfectly capable of getting a ball, you know?"

I held the ball tight on my hand before throwing it back to him. Of course I knew he could get the ball. Jacob Walker was the type of guy who could do anything his heart desired. But that still didn't mask the possibility of him falling down.

"I might be disabled-"

"- but you're not unable." I finished for him, a soft curve glossing my features. 

Jacob picked up his right foot, his eyes twinkling. "I can even stand on it without losing my balance. Cool, huh?" We both stared down at his prosthetic leg as he did exactly what he described. He really was getting the hang of things. "Soon I'll put a knife at the end and I'll be some bad ass ninja or something - doing all these kick shots."

Far too excited for his own good, Jacob buckled. My heart skipped one too many beats, even after he settled himself back on two legs. 

"But for now," he breathed out, " I think I will stick to getting my degree."

Oh how much I missed him.

I chuckled. "How is school going, by the way?" 

Jacob has only been away for college one semester even though he is twenty-one. After he graduated high school he made the impulse decision to join the military, so that took up a good year and a half of his life. He might have even remained in the army longer if it weren't for the accident, but things changed. Jacob hated abrupt change, I knew that, but he never once showed it. Like I said, that lazy grin was stuck like glue. 

He brushed the back of his hair down. "It's. . . going. Forget about school, though. I did not come back home just so you can question how I'm doing in school!" Jacob threw the baseball back towards me, faster than I anticipated. I still caught it, which made me beam a little brighter. "But as your older brother, I have the right to ask you about this Clinton guy mom and dad keep telling me about."

Instinctively I corrected him,"It's Clayton." 

"Oh! So there is a guy."

I threw the ball, aiming for his face. Of course he caught it expertly. "No, there isn't! He is just a friend, Jacob." His look of disbelief made be roll my eyes. "Come on, throw the dang ball back."

He smirked. "Since when have you ever liked baseball? Last time I checked you thought the game was boring." I scoffed. "Then again that was three years ago."


"Or maybe it has to do with the fact Clinton plays baseball for your school?" 

"I'm done." It was so hard not smile, but I somehow managed. The last thing I needed was Jacob pressuring me about Clayton. I already had to deal with our parents. "Make dinner for yourself. Better yet, go back to school."

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