Chap. 37

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*trigger warning*

I was the first one awake.

This almost never happens.

And then I saw that the coffee pot was already running.

Well, maybe the second one awake.

I helped myself to a glass of orange juice, going ahead and taking my morning medicine while I waited for the coffee to finish.

I hadn't slept well last night, my anxiety on high from having two panic attacks last night.

And now I had a headache and I felt lethargic, sluggishly moving throughout the kitchen as I made myself a bowl of cereal.

The coffee finished, and I poured myself a mug as I heard the front door open.

The way this house was set up, I couldn't see the front door from the kitchen.

But a few moments later, Parker came into the kitchen, his running armband still strapped around his upper arm as he pulled his headphones out of his ear.

He stopped short when he saw me, surprise flickering across his face.

We hadn't really spoken since he caused my second panic attack last night.

"Morning," he greeted, tossing his headphones and armband on the counter.

"Morning," I muttered, before heading out to the table.

Parker was a few minutes behind me, coming out with a mug of coffee and an apple.

The first few minutes were silent, Parker glancing over at me every now and then.

"I'm sorry," Parker said, turning to face me.

I raised my eyebrows at him.

It wasn't like Parker to apologize, especially for a past argument.

"I let my temper get the best of me," he continued. "Which I'm working on."

"Like I haven't heard that one before."

He took a sip of his coffee. "I really am working on it."

Of course he was. Parker was always working on his temper. It just never seemed to get any better.

He bit into his apple, silent for another few moments.

"I'm here to support you and to be there for you, not to cause your attacks," Parker continued, after swallowing his food. "That was a new low for me last night, and it won't happen again."

I slowly nodded, taking a sip of my coffee as well.

"What happened last night?" I asked him.

"What do you mean? I told you that I lost my temper-"

"No, with Emily," I clarified.

"Oh, well we went out for dinner, and then we-"

"No," I interrupted again, letting out an exasperated sigh. "She was talking you through your anger. She said you're up here right now, and then she convinced you to leave the room."

Parker was silent for a little while, eating his apple while he mulled over my question.

"It's a tactic I learned in anger management," he finally said, letting out a sigh.

"You haven't been to anger management since Peace River."

"I started back up again," he informed me. "After I punched a hole in the wall over at your school."

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