Beau tried to cheer me up on the plane ride back. I could tell he felt a little guilty about what happened with Briar. But it wasn't his fault. It was mine. I should have never started something up with her in the first place.
It was too dangerous and she knew it.
But that didn't make my feelings for her go away.
Vacation was over and we were all back in the classroom. I had senior-itis in the worst way. Only three more weeks and my suffering would be over. But then I worried about what Beau's and Briar's plans were. She wouldn't even talk to me. All I could do was obsess over the fact she might marry that asswipe. I don't think I could take that. I had to figure out a way to trap him. Find out more information for the feds.
My German teacher's voice sounded like an irritating mosquito, so I tuned her out, mostly.
"God, can you believe she'd assign us a whole packet to do in one day?" Chase moaned.
"Yeah," was all I could say. I felt as if a heavy block pounded on my chest. I'd never suffered something like this before.
Hunkering down, I just wanted to shut out the whole world. I ached to see Briar again. Thinking about her was just making me miserable. I knew it but couldn't help myself.
Chase raised his hand. "Miss Mueller, do we have to do this whole thing? I've got a lot of homework in my other classes, too, you know."
I didn't even want to finish the dumb packet. Chase was right. It was too much. I'd gotten into S. M. University. Why did I have to keep busting my ass in high school? It was so pointless.
I kept staring at my paper, trying to focus on the German words, but then my mind kept going back to Daniel. Who could be after him? If I could figure out what kind of dirty deals he was into, maybe I could feed that to the FBI.
Miss Mueller pointed at the door. In her thick German accent, she said to Chase, "If you don't like my class, Mr. Bolton, you may leave."
"No no...that's fine, Miss Mueller. I'll do it." Under his breath to me, he said, "Why are German women always so touchy?"
I lifted the side of my mouth. "I think all women are touchy, dude. Fact of life."
I stayed in my music room, but didn't even have the energy to play anything. And that never happened. Usually, when something was wrong, I'd immerse myself in a song or work on a guitar riff. Instead, I found myself sitting on the couch with my phone in one hand, arguing with myself on whether to call Briar or not.
She said to leave her alone. I knew she meant it. But I couldn't believe she felt that way. Not really.
For an hour, I'd stare at it, popping from her number to an app to my texts to her number again. This pathetic behavior went on for too long.
"Aw, fuck it," I groaned, feeling the back of my eyes heat up. I flicked my fingers, trying to stab any tears from forming. My mouth pulled as I heard her phone ring and ring.
Then it abruptly clicked off like she stopped it.
"Damn," I whispered. So much for using the excuse of inviting her to my birthday party.
"She must hate me," I thought to myself, feeling the lowest I'd ever felt in my life. "Why won't she talk to me? I just want to be friends again."
When I saw August's name light up my phone, I grabbed it, wanting to answer. My mind whirred, thinking about what I'd say. I just couldn't go back to him. Not yet anyway. Daniel was so easily manipulated this time, too. I'd lathered up the charm so he wouldn't suspect anything.
It made me want to throw up.
But it was worth it to protect August.
Clicking off the phone, I wiped a tear that fell. I missed August terribly. Why was my life so awful?
It was August's birthday party and he was banging out some jazzed up pop song.
God, he was so talented. I could listen to him all day.
And he was playing one of my favorite songs, too, only he'd redone it himself, giving it a beefed up tempo. I felt like he was playing this just for me. I'd catch his eye from time to time and he'd smile sending shivers through me. I wondered if we'd be together one day. I just could feel our attraction so strong at times like these. It was as if no one else was around in the room.
He was so sweet to me after my meltdown in Windenburg. I felt really sorry about how things turned out, too. But my sister told me she wanted to stay with Daniel. That he'd promised to work on things. I didn't know what to believe. I did see Daniel changing in his behavior even toward me, so maybe he was trying. But Daniel was a dangerous thug and that wouldn't change. Somehow, I'd try to convince her to go to San Myshuno with me and August.
"Let's dance, sweetheart," I heard Ethan say over the piano notes. He brought a new girl with him tonight. I'd never seen her before, but she was cute. I thought I saw Amber drill daggers through her, though.
My party was actually fun even though it felt strange not to have Briar there. Every one of my friends came, including Wilder Roberts. Ethan told me to invite him since he was throwing all of us a huge graduation bash on his yacht, so yeah, I did. But I didn't expect him to show. And he came with a beauty on his arm. As expected, I guess, for Wilder.
"That's why you should have called me, darling," Wilder said in his British accent. "I would never allow you to walk home alone."
I mused at the silk in his voice and the charm that seemed to seep out of him. One of the most dashing men I've ever met, that's for sure. I wondered what the hell he was doing being friends with Daniel. But because of their connection, it might be good for me to ask a few questions, subtley. Maybe I'd find a lead to Daniel's demise.
His date asked me where the bathrooms were and I gave her directions.
When we were alone, I said, "Thanks for coming, Wilder. It means a lot to me for you to be here."
"Any time, mate. It's least I could do after what you've suffered. I'd been meaning to tell you what a grotty low blow that was. Wish it hadn't happened, but glad you came out all right."
This made my skin prickle. An obvious swipe to Daniel.
Cocking my head, I said, "Um...I thought you were friends with Daniel. I mean, I see you around together."
Staring straight at me, he said, "Oh, right, that...You know...you'll see an eagle and a snake sometimes in the wild together, right?" He arched an eyebrow. "But an eagle can never be friends with a snake."
Next update is on Friday, January 19th
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