“Landon, please. This is a huge opportunity for me and Christian to mend our friendship,” Alex says.
I watch her riffle through her closet, searching for clothes to wear when she goes out with Christian and his dad. Deep down, I know what Christian’s doing. He’s trying to win Alex back, and it just might work. She’s excited to go out with them. I can see it in her eyes.
“His dad is a horrible person, Alex,” I say, making sure that she knows she’s making a mistake.
“What if he’s changed?” she asks, continuing to look through her clothes.
“Do you believe he has?”
She pauses, pulls out a blue jean skirt, and says, “I hope so.”
A nervous feeling rises in the pit of my stomach. Hoping isn’t good enough. She’s in danger if she goes out with him. I just know it, but she doesn’t. And she’s blinded because she wants to continue being friends with Christian, and although I can’t blame her, I hate it. So very much.
She tosses a skirt onto the bed beside me. I watch her closely, and after staring at me for a second, she turns back around and continues searching for clothes.
“Alex,” I say.
“He needs me,” she answers with a finality.
So do I, I think, but I don’t speak it. Instead, I say, “Why you?”
She doesn’t answer me but instead holds up a pink tank top and a thin black sweater to wear over it. “What do you think?”
“You’ll look beautiful in it.”
Like she always does but frustration rises up inside of me, and I want to scream and yell and let her know how much I hate this.
Alex walks towards me, wrapping her arms around my neck, and whispers in my ear, “Please don’t worry.”
“How can I not?” I ask, and my voice cracks. This is torture. The girl I love is putting herself in danger because of an ex-boyfriend who says he needs her.
Before I can speak, she kisses me, and I lose myself in her touch, in her kiss, praying to feel some kind of reassurance. I pull her closer to me, eager to feel her touch. I move my hands to her hips and kiss her more urgently. She reciprocates the kiss, and I pray that God will let her stay with me and not go out with Christian.
We lean our foreheads against each other, and I struggle to catch my breath. I open my mouth to beg her to stay, but I don’t. She won’t stay anyway.
I kiss her quickly and say, “Guess you need to change. It’s getting about time.”
She stands up straight, grabs her clothes, and walks into the bathroom. I sit there staring at nothing in particular, my mind racing with thoughts of losing her. I won’t let that happen. I will fight for her, and if Christian doesn’t think that’s the case, he’s sorely mistaken.
I pull out my phone, warring with myself about sending Christian a text, telling him to call this off. But I don’t. If Alex finds out, she’ll be hurt and angry. I can’t do that to her, no matter how I feel.
Alex walks back into the room. She’s braided her hair to the side, and the outfit she wears hugs her body in ways that drive me wild.
“You look amazing,” I say, my breath catching in my lungs.
“You think?” she asks, smiling and twirling around. Despite the odd circumstances, I can’t help but smile at her. She hasn’t been happy since she was a kid, and to see a smile on her face now makes me want to work harder to keep it there.