I sniffle before signalling for the tissue box. Ivory grabbed a tissue, wiping her own eyes before passing it to me.
"It's just so sad, you know?" I sniffle, watching Rose pleading for Jack to wake up. He was clearly dead, his whole body turning blue and icicles forming on the strands of his hair.
"What a waste of a beautiful human," Ivory mumbles, blowing into her tissue. She turned towards me —
"I can't believe you've never watched the Titanic before Emily, it gets me every time."
We're both laying on the couch in our PJ's, staring up at the TV where the movie was almost ending. The door creaks open, revealing Jake and Tobias watching us with an amused expression.
"Really girls?" Tobias asks, shaking his head and chuckling at us both. He lunged forward and snatched the remote from Ivory's hand, causing her to shriek loudly.
"Tobias! No! It's almost the end!"
She ran at him, almost knocking over a vase of flowers on the coffee table. I sniffled again and wiped my eyes, looking up to find Jake standing over me, holding back a laugh.
He grins down at me, his hands inside his jacket pockets.
"Shut up Melvin," I grumble at him, reaching for another spoonful of Nutella. I have to drown my sorrows in something. Before I have the chance to devour it, Jake plucks it out of my hands in one swift move.
"Get up and do something beside eat Nutella and cry over chick flicks. Ivory is rubbing off on you."
I shook my head, protesting and lunged for the nutella spoon again. Jake was quicker than me and suddenly I was flung in the air with Jake's back as my only view. My mouth hung open in shock and I shut it over quickly.
"Jake, put me down!" I yelled, slapping his back. He ignored my screams of protest and instead carried me effortlessly out of the living room, heading up the stairs.
"The blood is rushing to my head!" I yelled, slapping his back harder. Jake's body vibrated against me as he chuckled and I huffed heavily.
I found myself suddenly being flung down onto the bed and I let out a little scream, my eyes widening.
"That-was-not-funny." I grumbled, crossing my arms over my chest and pouting. Jake rolled his eyes and pinned me down onto the bed, his body over mine.
"Jake! You're too strong, you'll squash me like a bug!"
He laughed loudly, throwing his head back as the joyous sound filled the room.
"You really do make me smile Muffin," he grinned, blue eyes sparkling brightly at me. I giggled back at him before he leaned down, attacking my lips with his.
A week inside is causing me to go insane.
I need to smell the fresh air, feel the grass, hear the birds. I pull on my trainers and clipped the dogs lead onto her collar, leading her outside with me.
My shoulders tense up with nerves and I was constantly on edge as I headed for the local dog park. I need to do this. I can't stay locked up in fear forever. The local park is a ten minute walk away however I got there in five by rushing. My chest rose and fell as I struggled to catch my breath. Damn, I'm unfit.
"Calm down pup," I instruct the dog who was barking at another one a few feet away. I tugged on her leash and she obeyed.
"Good girl." I praise her, heading for the dog trails. I took the chance to enjoy the atmosphere, it was so calm and peaceful. The sun was shining and I inhaled deeply, loving the benefits Mother Nature has to offer. A slight breeze whipped around me and I felt my shoulders relax slightly.
A small rustle from behind me caught my attention and I turned immediately only to find the branches swaying to and fro from the breeze. Stop being paranoid Emily.
I scolded myself, feeling completely on edge. I pushed any paranoid thoughts to the back of my mind and began to jog ahead of the dog, smiling as she followed me. We both weaved our way through the trails, getting lost in a sea of trees and bushes. Wherever I went, Boe was right behind me.
I lightly jogged up a small pathway, my muscles loosening the further I went. When I glanced down, the dog wasn't with me. I immediately stopped and turned, scanning the area. She was nowhere to be found.
"Boe?" I called out, my voice echoing through the air. I decided to re-trace my steps and turned the corner, colliding into a hard chest.
"I'm so sorry!" I apologised, looking up to find a man in his early thirties. He had a dark buzz cut with a chiselled structured face that had a faint line of stubble running along his jaw. His dark eyes connected with mine and despite his age, he's clearly handsome. He grinned at me, showing off a row of perfectly straight teeth.
"Don't worry about it, is this your dog?" He asked, holding Boe in his arms. I breathed out a sigh of relief, smiling gratefully at him as I took her in my arms.
"Yes, thank you so much!" I said, clipping her back onto her lead to stop her from running off again.
"You're welcome Emily."
I froze at the mention of my name and glanced up at the man. His whole facial expression had changed, his eyes now cold and emotionless.
"How do you know my name?" I asked quietly, taking a step back. He took a step forward instantly, his eyes never leaving mine.
"I know your father," he said, tilting his head to the side as he studied me. I felt my stomach clench tightly —
"My father's dead."
The man chuckled quietly in response, the sound causing every hair on my body to stand up in chills.
"Do you know who I am Emily?" He asked, his tone quiet and chilling. The wind seemed to have picked up and I shuddered, wrapping my jacket tightly around myself.
"No, and that's exactly why I'm leaving," I added, turning on my heel and walking away. His hand shot out and gripped onto my elbow tightly.
"You're not going anywhere," he threatened quietly, his grip tightening. My heart began to thump wildly against my chest. I bit my lip tightly to stop myself from screaming out and kicked back with my leg with as much strength as I could.
My foot connected with his groin and he groaned in pain, doubling over.
Huh, I'm getting good at this.
I took the chance to run, the dog right behind me. I heard his shouts of protests but I never once slowed down until I was safe behind a locked door.
I slammed the front door shut, bolting it and slid down the wall. My chest was rising and falling heavily and I sucked in a deep breath, forcing my nerves to calm down.
"What the hell happened Emily?"
I looked up, meeting Jake's eyes that were worried and concerned. He was glancing between me and the dog, a confused frown on his face. It took me a few moments to structure my sentence properly.
"A man c-chased me in the park, I think he knows T-Trevor."
My hands were shaking by my sides and I inhaled deeply, forcing myself to breathe normally. Jake's eyes widened and he lunged for his jacket, pulling it on.
I remained rooted to the spot on the floor for the next three hours before I finally gave up waiting, dragging myself to my room reluctantly.
Heart To Heart
The room is pitch black when I finally hear the door creak open, slowly.
I groan and bury my head back into Jake's blankets, sleep overcoming me once again. It always felt so safe here, Jake's scent radiating off everything. The mattress dipped and I felt his warm body press against mine. His lips briefly touched my cheeks before he kicked off his shoes and swung his arm over me, pulling me closer. If I wasn't so tired right now, I'd be low key fan-girling over the fact I was sharing a bed with Jake.
"Where have you been?" I mumbled sleepily.
"It doesn't matter, sleep Muffin" he whispered, his breath tickling my ear.
I sighed contently and pressed further back into him, getting comfortable. Jake coughed behind me and cleared his throat, adjusting himself. I groaned in protest and opened one eye, turning halfway to face him –
"You were backing up into me Muffin, no guy is going to be okay with that."
It took me a few seconds to register what he was saying before I burst out laughing.
"Sorry Jake," I chuckled, turning towards him.
I leaned up and pecked his lips, feeling something warm and wet touching my skin. I squirmed, frowning and turned the bedside lamp on. My eyes blinked several times as they adjusted to the bright light beside me. I gasped, looking down to find my hand's stained with wet, fresh blood.
"What happened?" I questioned Jake, eyes wide.
His lip had been cut and blood was slowly dripping down it. The form of a bruise underneath his eye was slowly getting deeper and his hands were a total mess, swollen and red. Jake shrugged before wiping the blood off his lip with the back of his hand.
"What happened? Are you okay?" I asked seriously, sitting up straighter. I was wide awake by now and waiting for Jake to answer me.
"Leave it Emily, I don't want to talk about it."
"Does it hurt?" I ask quietly, it looks painful. The blood dripping down his face was a clear indication of that. Jake's eyes turned cold, his body tensing.
"Emily, leave it, okay? Obviously I've been fighting." He snapped, wincing in pain.
I paused, feeling hurt from his harsh tone. I turned away from him and switched the lamp off, causing darkness to immediately drown the room once again. I didn't want him to see the disappointment in my eyes.
Jake shifted beside me before cursing and walking out of the room, closing the door behind him. I sighed heavily and laid on my back, staring up at the ceiling.
Muffled knocks and bangs could be heard coming from the bathroom and I climbed out of bed, pulling Jake's hoody over my flimsy shirt. I ran a hand through my hair before opening the door and stepping out into the dark hallway. The door to the bathroom was left open slightly and the light coming from it guided me towards it effortlessly. I could hear Jake's grunts and hisses of pain come from the bathroom and I stopped, pausing in front of it.
I pushed open the door to find him with his back to me. He was shirtless and I breathed in sharply, examining the damage. Cuts and bruises filled his back spreading a red tinge over his skin.
Jake turned slowly, sensing my presence. My eyes widened further as I studied the front of his body which was equally as beaten as his back.
"I'm sorry, I shouldn't have taken it out on you," he whispered, his eyes full of guilt.
"You're right, you shouldn't have taken it out on me — " I respond quietly, knowing his snappy attitude was due to him being in pain.
"But I understand, you're in pain." I murmur, he didn't have to tell me, I could see it in his eyes. He nods slowly, his jaw clenched tightly.
"I'm still trying to learn how to control it, my anger," he explains softly, closing his eyes. He lets out a deep breath before opening them and looking at me. His eyes roam down my body.
"You look good in my shirt" he said quietly, changing the subject. I smile softly, a small blush creeping up my cheeks. My eyes land on a tattoo I hadn't recognised on him before, located just under his collarbone. It was Spanish, I think. I didn't recognise the word, noticing it began with a 'H'.
"What does that mean?" I asked, gesturing towards the tattoo. Jake looked down, shaking his head once he realised what I was referring to.
"That's a story for another day," he said quietly, his voice barely above a whisper. I noticed the hostile switch in his personality so decided to not press the subject further. Instead, I took the wipe from his hands, gently wiping away the blood that had now dried up over his skin.
"Did you find him?" I whisper, remembering Creepy Guy's voice and dark eyes. Thinking of the way his eyes looked into mine caused me to shudder. He reeked of danger. Jake's body tensed and he shook his head.
"I didn't find him. I ran into some other people. You're coming with me tomorrow Emily, we'll find out who he is," Jake replied briefly.
Once I was done cleaning him up, he kissed the tip of my nose and grinned down at me –
"Cheers for patching me up, doll face."
"Doll face? That's new" I smile.
"Yeah, doesn't really suit you, does it? I much prefer Muffin" he whispers, shooting me a heart stopping smile. I grin back at him, unable to tear my eyes away from his.
"Where are we going tomorrow?" I ask quietly, ignoring the little butterflies in my stomach.
"It's a surprise" he replied mysteriously.
"You like surprising me, don't you?" I smile, looking up at him. My gaze lands on his lips. The cut on his lip was red raw and I looked away, feeling guilty for wanting to kiss him.
The memory of our first kiss flashed through my mind and I bit down on my lip once again to stop the smile from spreading across my face. I don't think I'd ever forget my first kiss with him. How could I?
"You're blushing" Jake noticed, closing the space between us. I didn't reply and watched as his eyes roamed my body stopping on my legs before his lips turning up into a sexy smirk, eyes shining in approval.
He cleared his throat and ran a hand through his hair before walking away from me and towards the shower. I watch him, making no effort to leave. Jake turned slowly, his eyes shining brightly as he notices me watching him intently. He slowly raises one brow, lips twitching up into a smirk.
"Do you want to watch me shower Muffin? Or you can join me?" he teased. I huffed and crossed my arms over my chest before opening the bathroom door.
"Oh please, I think we both know you're taking a cold shower to calm yourself down Jake." I nodded towards his jeans and he stared back at me for a second, mouth open before his lips turned up into a lazy smirk.
"I can't help it when you're around me looking like that" he shot back smoothly, eyes turning a shade darker. I left the bathroom quickly so he wouldn't notice my cheeks blushing a bright red.
Note to self – control my cheek colour when Jake is around.
I was fully awake now (thanks to Jake) so I tiptoed downstairs, careful not to wake Ivory or Tobias. Me and Tobias were keeping our distance from each other and I had a strong feeling we wouldn't be the best of friends anytime soon.
I padded into the kitchen and turned to find Jake's dog following me, yawning having just woken from a sleep. I bent down and stroked her behind her ear, smiling as she leaned upwards in enjoyment.
"You little cutie" I mutter, planting a soft kiss on her head. I stood up, reaching for the freezer. My hand instantly wrapped around the tub of heavenly ice cream and I licked my lips, reaching for a spoon.
Cookie dough, get in my face.
I made my way into the living room, settling down onto the main couch. I reached over to turn the screen on and flicked through the channels before landing on Friends.
"I'll be there for you, when the rain starts to pour!" I sang along in a hushed whisper, using the spoon as my microphone. I flipped my hair forward dramatically before settling further back into the couch, getting comfortable.
I had taken the first spoonful of my ice cream, murmuring in approval when the door pushed open slowly. I turned to find Jake watching me, eyebrow raised in amusement.
"Do you and the ice cream need a moment together? Because you really seem to be enjoying each other's company."
I narrowed my eyes at him before lifting the tub of ice cream to my lips.
"Don't listen to him C.D – he's just jealous" I whispered loudly, cradling it close to my chest.
"C.D?" Jake asks, confused.
"It's initials, cookie dough" I explain.
Jake chuckled, shaking his head disapprovingly at me before he walked over and settled himself down right beside me. Small beads of water were glistening in his dark hair from his shower and the bleeding from his lip was now gone. I gave him a small smile before holding out my spoon for him to take. He spooned out a huge chuck of ice cream and shovelled it into his mouth.
"I'm impressed" I admitted.
"I have that effect on girls" he responded, swallowing the ice cream in his mouth. I rolled my eyes at his response and shoved his shoulder lightly.
"Jake, where do you see this heading?" I asked, the question popping up into my head. The conversation we had in the kitchen a few nights ago played around in my head constantly. It was kind of hard to know your boundaries when you didn't even know where you stood with the person.
Jake dropped the spoon in the tub and sighed, knowing we'd be having this conversation soon.
"Honestly? I don't know. I like you, I really do. I swear I'm not just playing you Emily" he pleaded, his eyes staring directly into mine. I nodded, feeling my stomach flutter with butterflies from hearing Jake admit he really does like me.
"I'm confused about us and I know you're having doubts about me. I won't hurt you Emily, I can promise you that. I just don't know where this is headed right now." He said, gesturing between the two of us.
I took the chance to think about his words carefully and ask myself whether I could trust him. My biggest fear was falling too quickly for someone who'd end up causing me hurt and pain.
I turned towards him to take in his features, his dark eyes that held so much mystery and his small nose that I found so adorable. Along with his smile that melted my heart every single time and caused my knees to weaken underneath me.
"I have feelings for you too Jake and I don't want to be used or hurt. I've spent years of my life hurt from Trevor and I want the pain to stop. I don't think I can take much more of it… I want to be happy" I added quietly.
Jake nodded, taking my hand in his.
"I promise I won't hurt you intentionally Emily. I'm stubborn as hell sometimes but I enjoy it when we're together, I really do." he admitted.
I could see the truth behind his eyes and my heart warmed from his words. He placed a tender kiss on the back of my hand before adding –
"I'll never let anybody else hurt you either. Once I found out Trevor had laid his hands on you, I made it my mission to fix things for you Emily. I don't know what it is about you, I feel so protective when I'm around you. I'm struggling to figure it out myself but what I do know, is that I want to protect you."
His words were heartfelt, sincere. I felt my eyes fill with unshed tears and I lunged myself at him, wrapping my arms around his neck.
"There was something special about you the first time I laid eyes on you. Not just because you moan when you eat," he joked, chuckling as he returned my embrace.
I buried my head into his neck, unable to stop the smile that was spreading across my cheeks. My heart was thumping in excitement against my chest and I inhaled his scent, closing my eyes so I could remember this moment forever.
One thing I was slowly beginning to learn was that the future isn't predictable and right now in this very moment, I feel alive and happy.
It's been years since I've felt this way.