58. Bailey

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"Hey, stranger!" I hear as soon as I step in the hallway.

I turn around and see Abby. I wait for her to catch up. "Hey. Sorry. I've been a little busy." I swallow nervously. "Nick's here."

Everyone—but especially Abby—was shocked when I returned from Christmas break without a boyfriend. None of them could understand why I broke up with Evan, and I didn't want to tell them about Nick. I wanted to keep that to myself.

When I started spending more and more time on the phone with him, I know she figured it out. I knew that she knew. She knew that I knew she knew. But we didn't talk about it. I think she kept waiting for me to bring it up, and I wasn't ready for her to scold me for putting myself in this situation...again.

She elbows me. "Yeah, I know. Derek told me. Why do you think I left you alone all weekend?"

"So you don't care?"

"Why would I care? Bailey, I want you to be happy. I'll only have a problem if he makes you unhappy again."

I nod. I've had the same thoughts. The last two days have been heaven. But how long will this last? "I am happy."

"So are you guys together now?"

"No." I answer simply.

"Well how long is he staying?"

"I don't know." We haven't discussed it.

"Ooookay. Well I'm confused," Abby laughs. "Do you want to meet for lunch?"

"I told Nick I would bring him something to eat in the room."

"Bailey, you two need to leave that room. When am I ever going to meet him and be able to form my own opinion?"

"I know. You're right. I'm just...nervous. Right now, we're like in our own world.We're going to become more vulnerable when we enter the real world, and I don't know how Nick will react to that."

"Is that really how you want to live your life? Afraid of how he will react?"

"No." I think. "I'm definitely going to the party on Friday, so if Nick is still here, you'll meet him there."

"Okay, but you should do something before that. Go on a date or something."

Nick? On a date? I can't even picture it. But I guess there's a first time for everything.

When I return to the room three hours later, Nick is sitting in bed, reading Gone With the Wind. I chuckle. "Fan of the classics?"

Nick sets the book face down on his lap. "My options were limited with your selection." He says, pointing to my shelves, filled to excess with books of all shapes and sizes.

"What are you talking about? I have tons of options."

"Yeah but I'm not going to read about a fucking vampire love triangle."

I laugh, setting the pizza box on my desk. "Oh whatever. You are totally Team Jacob."

He rolls his eyes and reaches over to the food, grabbing a slice as I do the same. We sit in silence for a few minutes while we eat. I'm sitting on my chair while Nick is still on my bed sideways, feet on the floor. It's only a few feet, but it feels too far. I move to sit next to him.

I see a hint of a smile that he tries to hide as I lay my head on his shoulder. "I missed you," I admit. Every time I felt the throbbing soreness between my legs, I wished I was back in this room.

He wraps his arm around my shoulder. I expect him to give me shit—I've only been gone a few hours—but he doesn't. "I missed you, too."

"I thought you'd go back to sleep after I left since you had nothing to do."

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