Chapter 18 - Mood Swings

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What could possibly be more urgent than an Uno rematch?

Was the only thought on my mind as I reluctantly traipsed back to my bedroom after winning a game of Uno with Luke. But apparently he had more urgent business to attend to when Gio walked in, informing that someone was calling for him downstairs. 

He promised a rematch, but honestly, we all knew he was just procrastinating another loss against me. 

"Oy," he had said with a wink on the way out, "I'll find out how you cheated."

My mouth gaped for a second in frustration before a smug smile flitted across my lips. "If you're so sure I cheated, there's only one way to find out who's truly better," I retorted, sticking my tongue out childishly. 

Luke chuckled, "Another time, Sunshine."

When I flopped onto my bed, a smile was still fixed on my face. A sunshine smile as Luke would call it. A complete contrast to the hot rage I was feeling at the start of my confrontation with Blake and the reminiscent grief I had felt with Luke. Oh, the joy of mood swings. 

Speaking of, my eyes landed on a plastic bag on my desk. A plastic bag that wasn't there before. My cheeks burnt in embarrassment, again, when I saw what Harley had left me. Wasn't he embarrassed walking into a store asking for girls products? But that wasn't all, there was a microwavable heating pad, chocolate, chocolate... okay, I get a girl likes chocolate on her period but two massive bars of dairy milk, really? Still, my heart warmed at Harley's thoughtfulness. 

My gaze found a small paper note to the side of the bag scrawled in neat, cursive writing. 

Ice cream & movie downstairs, if you want - H 

A bright, wide grin broke out on my face before I could help it, a sudden flood of joy. I'd always preferred ice cream to chocolate, I wondered if that was another fact my brothers knew from when I was a baby. But no, the happiness glowing inside me came from the hope blossoming in my heart. Hope for a stronger relationship with my brothers. 

I was still painfully aware my questions had been evaded yet again but I had gained a new founded respect for how they felt, for why my questions went unanswered. The unanswered questions still danced in my brain like flies that wouldn't go away but they were fiercely overpowered by the profound joy that intoxicated my heart. Drunk on happiness. It's funny that in the hours I was sure I would be planning my funeral, I was instead singing my brothers praises. 

"What's got you grinning like a Cheshire cat?" 

I blushed and forced away the grin when I saw Blake leaning against the doorway to my room with his phone in hand. I made a mental note to follow up on Luke's promise to request more privacy. I shoved the plastic bag under my duvet covers.

"Well?" An eyebrow raised. 

I shrugged, "Just happy," I said, allowing an inch of my suppressed smile to return. 

It was the simplest words to help him understand. I couldn't possibly explain the extent of my happiness without boring Blake to death. Happy. Happy that Harley bought what I needed and more? Happy that Blake perhaps missed me, even just a little. It wasn't exactly justified, my overwhelming sense of gratitude and contentment, so I just blamed it on my time of the month. Mood swings. 

He tilted his head, a perplexed smile sweeping casually over his features. "Well, perhaps you can relieve Elijah's concern with that... happiness?" He said. Oh yes, happiness. An alien concept for Blake. 

"Yes, yes, here she is," he then quickly spoke in frustration to Elijah down the line and then handed me his phone. "He wants to speak with you."

Rule number one, never hand your siblings your phone. A dangerous mistake. Well, he really had nothing to worry about, I wasn't about to overturn all our progress that day for a sibling prank. At least not yet. 

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