Safe In Your Arms

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Isabella's P.O.V

The low, once comfortable drone of the school air conditioning was almost deafening now. The words spun faster the more I tried to concentrate on them, my stomach was doing back flips.

 Have fun while you can.

While you can.

The buzzing was getting so loud I thought I was going to faint. With trembling hands I struggled to cram the phone back into my pocket.

"Isabella," Zach called from somewhere far away, waving his hand in front of my face. My throat closed up. I shook my head and pulled my gaze towards him.

"Who's 'J'? And what does he mean by "have fun while you can?" Zach demanded, leaning close enough that I could see the tiny specs of reddish gold in his eyes. A chill ran up my spine, and I instantly wrapped my arms around myself, closing my eyes tight. It was scary how the name came to me as naturally as breathing would. The memories played back in my mind, the sharp contact of his hand against my face, his pure intentions to cause pain to Parker, his own brother--how he didn't even care. Jesse.

"Its Jesse." I heard myself stutter, sliding my hand through my hair, as if, like my fingers I could work out all the tangles.

Jesse being back, meant only one thing--he was coming for Parker. Jesse meant change, it meant the smile that had been in my heart for the last couple of months would disappear.

Most of all, I knew it'd change not only us as a whole but Parker, especially him.

When i'd first met Jesse, he'd only been checking up on Parker in place of his malignant father. Now he was here to make him hurt.

Cause pain to the only guy i've ever really loved since my dad's passing. 

"Jesse? Who the fu--"

"Zachary Miles! Ah, I heard you were going to be in my class." Mr. Finch slammed a ruler against my desk, dangerously close to Zach's hand. Zach looked up, unfazed, smiling.

"Nice to meet you too, sir."

Mr. Finch looked desperate to hide his irritation as he turned to me, an evil eyebrow arched high on his forehead. 

"Miss Lockhart, I assume it'll be an honor to have you in class this year?" He nodded meaningfully towards me, "Don't let such distractions get in the way of your studies, huh?" With that Mr. Finch spun around, tacky tweed jacket and all. I'd barely heard what he said, my heart was pounding too loud for me to hear straight.

I ran my fingers hysterically over my father's dog tag, "It'll be okay." I chanted to myself, "Just forget it."

Zach was still staring at me, probably thinking I was a freak. I mean who wouldn't, when the girl in front of them was rubbing a necklace like prayer beads and chiding to herself? I dropped the tag, so it fell back onto my chest.

"Don't worry about it," I whispered, peeking over at Mr. Finch who was eyeing us suspiciously. "Its nothing."

I wasn't even convinced, I knew Zach wasn't. He had the look in his eyes meaning i'd hear about it later. I'd opened my mouth to explain but he had turned around to face the front. 

I let out an unintentionally loud sigh and leaned my chin against the heel of my hand--as my sigh ended, Zach winced though nothing had struck him.

The first day back had turned into the first day in hell. I don't remember ever being so disoriented at school, it was like I was in a dream as I got pushed down the hall's, sat in classes I can't remember, and ate food that tasted like cardboard. 

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