16. Infinite Cold Nights

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"Falling down is an accident

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"Falling down is an accident. Staying down is a choice."

MAYA

The silent and restless crowd became overly noisy when my body collided with the surface of the deep blue water. However, amongst the cheering, my ears also captured a scream. A terrified scream. It was faint, no match to the chaotic cheering, but I heard it just before my body went underwater.

It took me a few seconds before I actually felt the freezing cold water prickle against my skin. I held my breath underwater as my hair floated around my shoulders and my clothes swayed on my body.

I was about to push myself up and throw my head over water, but my stiffened cold bones protested when another tall and heavy figure jumped inside the pool. The next thing I knew, Cayden and I were staring at each other underwater.

Cayden's eyes were so wide that I almost feared his pupils would blow up, his hair was sticking out in all sorts of directions and his expression was a mix of furious and shocked.

I almost laughed, but slapped a hand over my mouth to contain it. Instead, I threw my hands up, doing a small victory dance to signalize that I won.

Cayden looked at me like my brain had once again, been hijacked, and I had completely lost it.

I swam over to him, but when I outstretched my hand out, Cayden smacked it away, pushing me away from him. His eyes gleaming with anger awakened sudden confusion within me. I tried to reach for him again, but Cayden kept pushing me away. This kept happening so many times that we basically ended up looking like we were wrestling underwater.

And then there was a moment when our bodies were so close that I felt his forehead touch mine. So close that I saw my reflection in his dull gray eyes. So close that I could barely understand what happened next. Our lips were against each other.

The kiss didn't even last for a mere second. It probably wasn't even a kiss. Just a brief brushing of my lips against his. But it felt more real than all those lustful kisses I shared with Nathan. Way more real. Way more.

Maybe it was the way the touch of his lips against mine left a tingling sensation bolting through my whole body from head to toe as if something lit up in me. Maybe it was the warmth that lingered within me during our brief lip-lock even though the water we were in was freezing cold.

I didn't get the chance to see Cayden's reaction to what just happened, because within a heartbeat, he had already pulled his face out of the water.

After I pushed my upper body over the surface of the water, I noticed three things. Firstly, everyone had gathered around the swimming pool and was cheering for me. Secondly, Cayden looked at me with shock painted across his whole wet face. Thirdly, I could still feel the soft sensation of his lips on my own.

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