Chapter 5: Until Next Time

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Prestley didn't believe me when I told her that I thought Steven had possessed her, even though she did admit to losing time, which she chalked up to being forgetful. Maybe she did believe me, but was just in denial. If it were me, I'd probably deny it, too, hoping if it had happened that denying it would make it less real.

Every time I looked at her, I pictured that spooky look she'd had in her eyes and how she'd slid her hand up my leg. Pres might get wild sometimes, but not girl-on-girl wild. That hadn't been Pres. When I told her about it, she laughed and told me I had dreamed it. "I woke you up and you just drifted back off to sleep, that's all," she'd said, still in denial.

I shook my head, knowing what happened did happen. "All I know is that if you try to feel me up again, I'm done."

She laughed, even though I wasn't joking. "Okay, I'll try to control myself."

It had been a week since Will died and she was finally smiling again. It wasn't much, but after what had happened, it was enough. Brad, on the other hand, had become a bit of a recluse. Not only was Will his cousin, but he was his best friend. I didn't know how long it would take him to get over it, if he ever did.

They had ruled Will's fall an accident, since they were on slippery rocks where people had fallen to their death before. You'd think they'd ban the area and not let people up there, but I guess like anything, there are risks and we can't be banned from everything. I just wish he would've obeyed the warning signs posted all over and not ventured so close. I'm just glad Prestley didn't suffer the same premature ending.

Over the next couple of weeks, Brad slowly started to come around, actually allowing himself to laugh on occasion. He had thanked me for being understanding, which I thought was funny. What was I going to do, yell at him for being antisocial because he was grieving the loss of not only a family member, but his best friend? I don't know who he'd dated in the past, but they must have been good ones.

We were lying on his bed, watching a movie, when he'd said it. "You don't have to thank me," I replied. "That's my job, isn't it? To be here for you and give when you're not able to." I smiled up at him. "I hope if there ever comes a time that I can't give, that you will." I shrugged. "Then we'll be even."

He smiled, but like most of his others smiles as of late, it was emotionless, just a bending of lips. "Sounds like a plan." He squeezed me tight as I snuggled back into his chest. "I just hope that time never comes, for your sake."

Those words stuck with me the rest of the evening, haunting me as I laid down to go to bed. I also hope that time never comes.

 ***

"Come on, Jailyn, we're gonna be late!" Prestley yelled up my stairs.

We had decided at the last minute to go to our school's formal. I figured it would get Brad out of the house and that he might actually enjoy himself. And Pres hadn't dated anyone since Will, so maybe this would be a good thing for both of them.

I stepped back and took one last look at my unruly hair, which I left loose to flow around me like a fire ball. Luckily, it had gotten really long, which weighed it down some, so I no longer had a red afro. Well, everyone said it wasn't an afro and that it looked cute, but I hated it and promised myself I'd never cut it again. Now when I want a new 'do, I put it up, not cut it off.

I pulled the edges of my dress down, which fell to my knees, hugging my hips, and slipped my heels on, which suddenly made me feel like a hooker. "Maybe I'll do flats," I said to myself as I retrieved them out of my closet.

"Oh, my gosh!" I heard Prestley say. "What's taking you so...? Where are you at?"

I walked out of my closet and sat down on my bed so I could put on my black Mary Janes. "I'm ready, just changing my shoes."

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