Fear Me (Broken Love #1)(4)


by B.B. Reid

I thought back to the moment she asked me about him, and mentally patted myself on the back for the lame excuse I gave Mrs. Gilmore after she dropped that bomb back at her office.

“I don't know what you mean Mrs. Gilmore. He and I have never had any association with each other. I hardly know him. I must have simply overheated and fainted.”

That wasn’t entirely untrue. I felt my body warm even now thinking about him. Sometimes it was too much. “I believe you Willow, you don't have to keep reminding me,” I laughed.

She sat up on my bed and stared at me for a moment chewing on her lip again. That meant Willow was thinking and Willow thinking is not a good thing.  “So what are you going to do?” she began. “I mean, you can’t stay in the house all summer and we have to go back to school in three months.”

“I don't know,” I answered truthfully. I wasn't foolish to think that just because he’s been gone for almost a year that the affect won’t be the same. Maybe he won’t be interested in tormenting me anymore. I can hope.

Willow didn't stay much longer and left after assuring herself that I was okay.  I welcomed the chance to be alone and prepared to take a shower for the night. My aunt had already gone to bed. I guess she didn’t know how to deal with the situation. I could understand. She didn't ask too many questions for which I was grateful.

I gathered my favorite pink sleep shorts with dancing teddy bears and the matching top and headed to the bathroom. Despite my aunt’s success, we lived modestly in a three-bedroom, two-bath home. It was two stories high with a nice sized back yard and pool. For my sixteenth birthday my aunt bought a car for me, but Willow and I carpooled, switching turns every day. We’ve been inseparable since we met, despite what occurred that day, although I think she feels guilty for some reason.

I gazed at myself in the mirror as if the reason for the past ten years was within the glass. I was tall with too-long legs that made me feel awkward, especially around other girls who were short, like Willow.  My blonde hair fell to the middle of back and I kept china bangs because of my mom. She always liked my bangs. My eyes were blue but in the right light they appeared almost green. My aunt says they’re turquoise. I was lean and tone in the right places thanks to yoga. I wasn't much of an outdoor person so I was kind of pale, but it didn't bother me. Willow liked to joke that I looked like a Barbie ballerina and was such a girl at times.

I didn't know how else to be. I am me. I wasn’t perfect though, not even close. I was diagnosed with dyslexia at a young age when it became apparent that I was having trouble learning by text.  And to break out of my “good girl” image, I got a navel ring a few months ago. I convinced Aunt Carissa to let me get one after many weeks of begging. In the end, she agreed because she didn't want to tempt me to sneak off and get one so she went with me. The silver lucky charm ring that I currently wore was my favorite.

I quickly ended my perusal and hopped in the shower, eager to end my drama filled day. Who knows…maybe I won’t even run into him.

* * *

Someone was laughing at my expense. Not literally, but even if they were, I was used to it. “Shit bro, I’m out of condoms,” I heard a voice announce.

I know that voice.

It wasn’t the voice, but I knew it and I knew who usually followed. I held my breath; waiting, hoping, praying that I wouldn't be caught, that this wouldn't be the aisle. I was in the local pharmacy picking up my favorite shampoo and did a quick look around. My focus zeroed in on the topic item and I quickly hurried to grab what I came for, but time and circumstance were not on my side.

Bottles of shampoo and conditioner came tumbling down as I knocked my hand across the shelf. It was like a domino effect as I watched them fall, a few bursting open and splattering my legs and sandals. Seriously, who put condoms and shampoo together anyway?

For a moment, I considered leaving them to run off, but a misstep landed me in the slick mess across the tile just as a tall form turned the corner, entering the aisle. I reluctantly looked up as the younger, more volatile Masters stopped in front of me.

Keenan.

He was almost an exact replica of my tormentor, except his face didn't hold the same hard lines, giving him a more boyish, youthful appearance that his cousin lacked. Sometimes I couldn't believe that they were cousins and not brothers. He was gorgeous, if not more than his older cousin.

Keenan kept his dark hair stylishly spiked and always appeared tousled as if he was constantly running his hands through it. Or some girl, I thought wryly. It was no secret that Keenan was the school whore even though he was exclusive with Bainbridge hottest, most popular girl. She was also a cheerleader. They were the typical teenage couple; hot, popular, and shallow.

His eyes zeroed in on me and paused to take in my situation. He was probably thinking up his best one-liner for a girl in distress but when he recognized me, a malicious grin slowly spread across his face.

Shit.

“Bro, get over here…this is going to top your fucking day,” he called out without looking away from me.

I moved to get away but Keenan decided to taunt me further—“Oh no baby, no need to move…you’re already in position to greet my cousin properly.” His voice was cold and dripping with venom.

I felt my face burn from embarrassment. I was currently bent over on all fours and quickly looked down to use my hair as a shield.

Run Lake, just run, I pleaded with myself, but I was too afraid to move – caught like helpless prey waiting for the predator to sink its teeth in. I was partially surprised at Keenan’s words. While he never went out of his way to be nice to me, he usually ignored me. He idolized his cousin and so Keiran’s beef was his, but his reaction towards me just now was new.

Great. Another fan.

Another form, this one taller, suddenly turned the corner, and a large pair of black, leather sneakers immediately stopped in front of me. I slowly raised my head. Some unforeseen force had taken control as my will and common sense fled.

My gaze passed over long legs that I could tell were muscular even through black jeans that hung low over his hips. He was bigger than I remembered—taller and more defined. His body looked hard and lean under a black Five Finger Death Punch T-shirt that hugged this chest and biceps.

Any hope that our separation would diminish the effect he had on me, disappeared once I finally met cool grey eyes. He looked the same as he did a year ago except his previous shaggy black hair was now cut short. His jaw was also stronger and his face more angular.