Peter Pan Complex


That morning she found herself dressing more practically, opting for denim shorts and a tank top rather than the little dresses she adored. Just in case she did more than sitting. It was also a role-reversal with her convincing her brothers it would be fun to go to the park, rather than them begging her. Making it eight consecutive days. Each time she experienced some sort of encounter with Alex. Something she began to await and long for.

"Dad, I'm taking the boys and Nana out again. Do you want me to bring anything back?" she asked through the wood of the door before descending down the staircase. Receiving an answer of no muffled by aching coughs before she proceeded.

She whistled to get the St. Bernard’s attention, that obediently came to her heel ready for the lead to be clipped to her collar. Her siblings pushed open the front door letting a burst of warm air into the overly conditioned house, which gave the dog a sniff of open area, causing her to tug on the grasp Harper had on her, dragging her owner out of the household. Instinctively knowing their direction, she lead the way down the path and took an immediate left.

Laughter echoed in the streets as they ran together. Maturity resting as she felt completely free of all restraints. She loved how she hit the wind before it reached her. How every muscle in her body was looking for its fair share of oxygen as she worked them hard. As soon as the sole of her scuffed white pumps touched the green grass, she unhooked Nana- letting her bound as freely as she was.

"Just stay close!" she called to her brothers as she headed to a place she returned to daily in the park. A particular spot to sit at that she first recognised because of the grand oak tree, now her feet took her there without a pause for thought.

He wasn't there, or anywhere in the surrounding area she could see. Yet he was rarely waiting for her there, he came to her.

While looking across the landscape and taking small shuffles back, she felts a splash up her leg of something wet and freezing. Immediately her eyes dropped, to check the back of her calves. Seeing nothing but a clear sheen of water catching the light of the sun, until spotting the residue of what was once a red balloon before the rubber split.

She passed it off as a rogue weapon, thrown in the wrong direction until she felt pressure hit her shoulder- liquid bursting and trickling down her back. She turned with a grin. Expecting a particular boy to be wearing an inviting smirk with a challenge sparkling in his eyes. Yet there was nobody of that description. Or anyone at all. Sensibly she switched her search up in the trees. Her first mistake she realised when she caught sight of something green dropping down in her direction.

Not a leaf, like she wished for in vain. For she felt it slide down her face, what was contained in the balloon. Yet as she judged the different consistency and tasted something more toxic than H2O dribble in her open mouth, she knew it was something more harmful than the first two. She inspected her finger tips after wiping her face to see violet paint sticking to them.

"Alex this isn't all that funny!" she yelled as she attempted to rub it off her skin so she wouldn't wonder round for the rest of the day receiving perplexed stare. She groaned at how she was only able to do this is she smeared her simple white top with the colour.

She looked up again, hoping to see him climbing down the branches with his arms raised in surrender. The only figure she could work out was Belle, sitting with a wicked smile on her rosebud lips with her legs swinging back and forth. She threw her head back with the mischievous cackle that was clearly at the sorry sight of Harper below.

"Fire!" her voice filled the air as she shouted the command. At first Harper was confused, until she saw at least half a dozen more balloons hurling towards her. Each one striking her with another colour making it look like a rainbow vomited on the poor girl.

It didn't take long for her to understand that it was the work of the group Alex bounded around in. After that, it was only natural for her to come to a revelation. One so huge, she stood still and didn't run for cover as she was stopped by the realisation. Accepting each successful aim as she let out a pained chuckle.

Her first instinct when he spoke to her, was that it was all part of a scheme for their amusement. She let go of her suspicions the second he spun her a line. Yet this immaturity, this humiliating prank was indeed far more Alex Gaskarth's style than a charismatic boy that just wanted to befriend her. Something like this was planned all along.

"You're a freakin' jerk." she seethed, knowing he'd hear before finally attempting to dodge their missiles and used a different tree trunk to hide behind. This didn’t stop them however as they seemed to be located in the branches of all the near by trees. She felt too defeated to do anything other than slide to the ground and inspected the multi-coloured damage.

Finally she concluded that she seemed to resemble a canvas to a modern art piece. Or a wounded warrior who’s blood consisted of more than just deep crimson. Neither metaphor made her feel any less naïve or comforted in her embarrassment.

“What the hell happened to you? And why aren’t you where you normally are?” her eyes were already narrowed when she looked up at the shadow lingering over her. With a bemused smile resting sloppily on his mouth that she wasn’t at all surprised by.

“You’ve got a lot of nerve asking that. I cannot believe I trusted that you had no ulterior motive when you suddenly decided to notice me.” Her voice held no spite or bitterness like someone should usually have in the circumstance, only disappointment.

“What are you talking about?” a confused frown tugged his eyebrows closer together.

Everything became clearer, at least for him, when a fresh splatter of orange landed on her head. She buried her face into her hands and felt a little sob of disbelief lodge in her throat. He however lifted his chin up and scanned for someone.

“Jack, what are you fucking doing?” his tone was dark, like nothing she’d ever heard from him before. Never had she witnessed playful Alex be consumed by anger “Alright all of you get down here.”

She wasn’t entirely sure what was happening, whether this was just another step in their plot or whether she had assumed things all too quickly. Honestly doubting by his reactions that he even had an involvement in this. Especially when every last one of his friends came closer wearing guilty expressions on their faces. Except of course the girl who looked nothing except satisfied.

“Why did you do this to Harper?” Alex demanded.

None of them looked willing to answer, all waiting for someone else to step forward with their reason. Until they grew restless and began to nudge the shortest one, pushing him to represent the group.

“Well, Belle told us that she had been harassing you for like the past week and that she wouldn’t leave you alone and you were pissed by it. So then she suggested that we did this to scare her off,” Rian muttered “But dude, I totally see now it was stupid to listen to her ‘cause you’re mad. So I’m really sorry Harper.”

The others quickly followed his lead and apologised sincerely. All except Belle, who was glaring daggers before slapping the back of Rian’s head after he pinpointed the blame on her.

“Why would you say that Belle?” he asked, it seemed that his rage was only growing judging by how his voice turned into a low growl.

Her big eyes widened, obviously she was as shocked by his reactions as Harper was, and she had been his friend for as long as they’d attended Dulaney. A pout formed on her lips as she folded her arms tightly across her chest before stomping away without justifying herself. Nobody ran after her, instead they stood silently. It being incredibly clear how dominant Alex’s personality was in their circle, and how they were awaiting his next words on the situation.

Instead he held out his hand to the forlorn girl, offering to pick her up of the ground. She took it, lifting herself up with some of his assistance. She couldn’t shrug off the shame that was bubbling in her gut at how quickly she judged him, once again. Yet it was replaced by the pounding of her heart as his thumb ran along her cheek, ridding it of a small proportion of the paint.

“I’m sorry Harper.” He said quietly, only to her.

“I am too.”
♠ ♠ ♠
Miranda decided this deserved an update. It's a little short compared to my usual updates, but I'm fond of it :)