Chapter Thirty-One Part Two ~Maddie~

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I've been feeling like she might be upset with me, or mad, and I thought it could possibly be about Travis, but now I know for sure...

"Alex..." I start, but I don't really know what to say.

She holds her hand up, her palm facing me. "Don't," she says, then spins on her heels, slamming the door shut behind her as she disappears into the room she just came from.

I look up at Travis, sighing. "I'm gonna go," I nod down the hall.

"Yeah, go—" he starts to reply, but Aiden cuts him off.

"Don't. I'll go," he says as he makes his way down the hall.

I slide down the wall, exhaling loudly, still feeling the need to go and talk to her. Sanders whistles once, his eyes wide as his gaze darts between Travis and me. And then silence, awkward silence, as they both stare at us.

"Don't look at me. I get it," Sanders finally says. "Pent up feelings and all."

For the love of... Could this have gone any worse?

Travis and Sanders get into a discussion, but I'm already standing, heading down the hall to find Aiden and Alex. I hear them murmuring as I near.

"You really think that's fair though? For her to be so open about it right in front of you?" I hear Alex asking as I step in front of the closed door.

"Alex, if it doesn't bother me, it doesn't get to bother you," he replies.

"It should bother you, that's the problem!"

"But it doesn't," his voice grows quieter. "I like her, yeah. But come on, they've known each other since they were kids. If I had the chance to be with Sara again, I'd take it in a heartbeat. So can I really be that upset? Can I really blame her? No."

Sara? I've never heard either of them mention her before. Not once.

"Whatever," Alex replies, and it's quiet for a while.

I glance down the hall to find Travis watching me. He's still engaged in conversation with Sanders, but the corner of his mouth turns up, the look in his eyes telling me it'll be okay.

That's why it's been so hard to hold back. I've waited so long to have Travis looking at me like that, openly knowing and caring, and to know he feels the same way about me that I feel about him, that he's always felt this way too? I can't help but not want to waste another second of our time together. But I know there's a fine line between being considerate and not wanting to hold back, and I need to figure out how to tread it more carefully.

"Why are you so upset about it?" Aiden's voice cuts through my thoughts.

"I'm not," Alex responds, irritated.

"Clearly, you are."

"I just think it's a little insensitive, don't you think?"

He groans. "It's whatever, okay? I'm glad for her. She deserves to be happy."

"With you!" she snaps.

Aiden laughs. "Alex, that's ridiculous. Listen to yourself. She should be with him. Especially if that's what she wants. I'm the last one to want to admit it, but the guy went through hell and back for her. Don't you think she deserves that?"

"Of course I do," she sighs, relenting.

"Then what's up? What's going on with you?"

"Nothing. Everything. I don't know, it's all starting to feel like too much, you know? Like we never should have left home."

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