chapter twenty eight

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chapter twenty eight
(not edited)

I DIDN'T EXPECT TO RUN INTO Mason at the grocery store, but I did. I was reaching for a bag of Nestle chocolate chips only to turn around to see him standing a few feet away from me. My eyes widened and my heart started pounding. I haven't seen him since we broke up - he was really good avoiding me at school.

"Hi, Ashley." He wrapped his hands tighter around his basket handle and awkwardly smiled.

"Hi, Mason." I took a deep breath before I dropped the bag of chocolate chips into my basket. May was coming over to my house for a sleepover and I was planning on making my world famous chocolate chip cookies. "How are you?"

     "I'm okay." He swished his lips to the side and shrugged. He focused his attention into my basket. "Are you making those amazing cookies tonight?" He questioned. I awkwardly laughed and nodded my head.

     "Yeah, I am." I said. "My friend is coming over for a sleepover tonight."

     "Oh, cool." He nodded.

     "Actually," I took a deep breath, "I should probably let you know that I have a girlfriend now." I cleared my throat as I watched his eyebrows raise, "her name is May Parker."

     "Oh, um, that's great, Ashley." He pressed his lips together. I nodded my head and looked down at my feet.

     "Excuse me." A middle-aged woman said from behind Mason. He stepped aside to make room for her. She smiled at him as she walked past us in the aisle.

We stood in silence.

     "Um..." Mason rocked back and forth on his heels for a few seconds before he finally came to a stop. "Julia told me that she told you that we, you know, had sex."

     "Right." I tightened my grip on my basket. "She did."

     "Well, I - uh, I'm really sorry." He stepped forward and stared right into my eyes. It made me a bit uncomfortable, but I didn't look away. "I didn't think she would go off telling people-"

"Look, Mason, it's okay." I shook my head and smiled at him. "We're not together anymore; I don't care what you do anymore."

"Yeah, I understand that, but I just want to explain what happened that night." He stepped forward yet again. I retracted back in just the slightest and he seemed to notice. He stepped back and scratched the nape of his neck. "Look," he looked up from the ground and dropped his arm, "it was a couple days after we broke up. I was feeling lonely and, I don't know, I just ended up at Julia's house." He said.

People started to walk by and I felt really self cautious that they were listening to our conversation. I grabbed my left elbow with my right hand and shrugged my shoulders up as a way to hide myself.

"Um..." He licked his lips and looked down. "I just can't believe I went to Julia out of all people."

I sighed and discreetly looked around to see if anyone was near us. No one was. They were all at the other end of the aisle.

"What do you mean?" I silently spoke.

"Well, I don't know." He sighed and looked up as his hand flew up and then smacked down onto his thigh. "Julia caused hell for you." My heart sunk an inch. "I would've hoped that I had gone to someone that didn't torture my girlfriend for months, but no. I just had to be an asshole."

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