Status: r e b o o t ;

Don't Write Me Off

[f o u r]

......The day seemed like it was dragging on forever, but that may be because I couldn't get what had happened with John last night out of my head. The crestfallen look on his face when I said those words nearly broke my heart and I wanted nothing more than to reach out and assure him everything would eventually be alright again. But then I reminded myself he had broken my heart many times before and that I shouldn't give him the opportunity to do it anymore. Still, the image stuck with me all morning and into the afternoon as I was googling cute ideas of how to ask my closest girlfriends to be my bridesmaids with those cheesy, superfluous boxes. Hey, you only get married once right?

I vigorously rubbed my temple and chewed the inside of my lip, stressing out about the very good chance of my friends, John's friends, breaking their promises of attending the wedding. I don't want them to feel like I'm making them choose sides, except I couldn't help but worry that they'll lean more towards John since I've been completely absent in their lives for the last three years.

Saving the current page I was on to my bookmarks, I slapped an arm over my stomach when a low growl emitted from it. It was ten past six, meaning it had been nearly seven hours since I last ate. I skipped lunch because Trevor was in the kitchen, watching his stupid football. He still hasn't said a word to me since I came home. Cassie was out with friends and our parents were out running errands.

Hoping he was now back in his room, I stood up and went downstairs. But to my luck, Trevor was still seated at the island with an apple in his hand and eyes glued to his laptop screen.

I reheated my Olive Garden leftovers from last night and sat on the opposite of the island with a dark stare fixated on him, hoping he'd look up and finally say something. Four minutes passed and not a word. Fed up with his childlike behavior, I slammed my fork onto the counter and asked, "Are you going to ignore me for the rest of our lives?"

His eyes lifted to meet mine as he coldly said, "If I could, I would."

My shoulder slumped forward as I tiredly sighed, "I fully expected to be ignored by the others, but you? I get that John's your best friend and he's hurting, but I'm your sister, Trevor. Do you remember all the times he's hurt me?"

He closed his Macbook and scoffed. "Of course I do, Lex. Do you remember all the black eyes I've given him for hurting you?"

One corner of my lips drew upward as I recollected. Whenever John screwed up, Trevor made sure he not only received a mouthful from him, but a fistful as well. "Then why are you so angry with me?"

"Because you're going to marry someone else even though you're still in love with John."

My brows furrowed together in annoyance. "I am not still in love with him."

A cocky chuckle left his mouth as he placed his forearms on the countertop and leaned forward. "That's what you may tell yourself in the mirror, but deep down you still have feelings for John. I know you do."

I crossed my arms and shrugged. "How?"

"Because I'm your twin, it's telepathy," he joked with a cheeky smile before a grave expression quickly appeared across his face. "But seriously, bug. I know you still love him because of the way you look at him."

"And how do I look at him?" I proudly challenged.

"As if he's some famous rock star," he said with a haste laugh. I rolled my eyes at his lame wisecrack. "As if he puts the stars in the sky. As if he's the only in the room. As if he's never hurt you. He still looks at you the same way too you know."

I inwardly bit my lip and silently picked up my plate, throwing the uneaten food away for I had suddenly lost my appetite.

"Look, I don't care if you choose to marry Zack or go back to John. I'll love and support you no matter who you end up with," Trevor assured, grabbing a coke from the fridge. "I just hope the choice you make is absolutely what you want."

I flashed him a tight-lipped smile and hurriedly walked up the stairs before he could say anything else to make me feel more uncomfortable than I already was. Shutting the bedroom door behind me, I leaned up against it with closed eyes and a deep breath. Whether or not his words were true, I pushed the idea to the back of my mind and resumed with my wedding plans.

I was in the middle of browsing through potential wedding gowns on the David's Bridal website when I heard an abrupt, soft clink. I thought nothing of it until I heard the clink again, causing me to wheel my chair around and listen carefully while my confused eyes darted from wall to wall. It wasn't until the fifth clink did I realize someone was throwing rocks at my window. I walked over to the large pane of glass, peered down to the ground floor, and frowned when I spotted the culprit.

As I watched the tall, lanky frontman scale the side of my house, I reluctantly slid the window upward so he could perch himself on the sill with one leg in the room and the other still dangling outside. An arrogant smirk played on his thin kissable lips as I dared to ask, "What are you doing here, John?"

He gave a reckless shrug and said, "I just wanted to warn you."

My eyes narrowed to slits as I folded my arms over my abdomen and shifted my weight onto one leg. "About what?"

"That I haven't given up on us," he simply replied, his smirk never faltering but widening madly. "And I don't think you have entirely either. Well, you just wait, AJ - you're going to fall in love with me all over again."

I cringed at his hated nickname for me as I hadn't heard it in three years. He reached into his front pocket and took out the little box I had returned to him not even twenty-four hours ago. "In the meantime, I want you to wear this." He opened the box to reveal our engagement ring sitting in the middle of the velvet bed, but it was now attached to a thin, sterling silver chain.

Keeping my arms crossed, I cautiously searched for the reason why in his features. "What for?"

"I didn't buy it for me," he answered, unfastening the clasp and holding the ends of the chain away from one another. "It's yours to keep."

I studied him and the ring carefully before hesitantly taking two steps forward and turning around with my hair pulled to the side so he could set the jewelry in place. A chill ran up my spine when his calloused hands lightly brushed the back of my neck and then lingered to my shoulders where they stayed. I bit my lip hard when I heard him shift and in an instant, his chest was pressed against my back.

I shuddered involuntarily as his hot breath touched my earlobe and his lips ghosted, "So is my heart."

~~~~~

"John!" the short, petite brunette giggled girlishly, striving to keep up with the tall, lanky baseball babe. "Give it back!"

John laughed heartily and continued to run away with a black leather jacket in hand. "Catch me if you can, AJ!"

It was quite cold out tonight, and the only article of clothing Lexie had on was a short, strapless violet dress. She had removed her silver stilettos and carried them in her hands in pursuit of John.

The two Corona Del Sol juniors had snuck away from their little group at the dull Homecoming Dance and decided to venture down the road to Blossom Meadow Park for no particular reason other than to get away from the dreary formal.

Lexie finally caught up to her date and knocked him into the gravel before he could pick up speed again with her the jacket landing several feet to the left. She straddled his waist and crossed her arms, completely out of breath. "Don't you think we're a little too old for this?"

John shook his head with a wide grin, absolutely breathless as well. "Never."

Lexie smiled down at the devilishly handsome shortstop before helping him to his feet. Keeping his grin, John picked up her jacket and raised it above his head. She frowned up at him and shivered from the chilly air. "Can we get those pancakes now?"

"Nope," he simply said, popping the 'p'.

"But you pinky promised," she playfully whined, kicking at the grass.

John laughed at the radiant girl standing less than three inches away from him. "Relax. I'll get you your pancakes...eventually."

Lexie rolled her eyes and continued to shiver. "Well can you at least be a gentleman and give my jacket back now? It's cold."

John gnawed on his bottom lip, deciding whether or not to say what had been on his mind all summer. Mustering up all the courage he could gather, he held his breath and raised his pinky between the both of them. Lexie looked up at him with a brow raised, but locked her pinky with his as always. "I pinky promise to give you your jacket back if you'll be my girlfriend."

Lexie felt the wind knock out of her and she marveled at the boy above her, whispering, "That's definitely not how it went."

John shrugged nervously and flashed her a half-smile. "Then perhaps we can grow up just a little bit." He placed the jacket around her shoulders and anxiously asked, "What do you say, AJ?"

Lexie didn't have to think twice about her answer as she let go of his pinky to wrap her arms around John's neck and tenderly pressed her lips against his, her jacket falling to the ground again.
♠ ♠ ♠
ps ~ i'm alive

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xoxo, Erika

PS - Happy 2019 loves