A/N: I had to revise this chapter because I caught an embarrassing error! Thanks to the reviewers who caught it, you guys are hired as my editors haha... Hope this chapter will suffice for now. Right now I'm working two jobs, going to school and working on an outline for my book that I hope to finish before the summers over. Then I have this, which is relaxing and I don't really take too seriously... Anyway, enough about me, read on! I love reviews!
Edwin took Derek out to dinner on his last day in town. They ventured out and found a cozy little burger joint that was near the mall. As they sat in a window booth they conversed and joked around like they did when they were just kids.
Derek would never admit it, but he missed these moments with his older brother. The bickering and mischief the two would make as children would drive their parents insane. One thing or person Derek could not get out of his mind was Casey and the ridiculous orgasmic dry humping that took place a few days back. Things have not been the same since that night; she seemed to be cold and withdrawn towards him. Something he hadn't had the chance to talk to her about due to Casey's stubbornness and resistance in talking about it.
"So what's going on with Casey?" Edwin inquired with a mouth full of burger.
Derek fidgeted uncomfortably in his seat and just stared down at his untouched plate of food for a moment. "I don't know, man…" he trailed off and ran a hand through his hair. "She hasn't been herself lately."
Edwin grinned. "She's scared bro."
Nodding hesitantly, Derek agreed. "Yeah, I know," he sighed.
Edwin took another bite of his food.
"I don't know what to do, I mean, I think I completely screwed up, god why do I have to be so hormonal," Derek cursed himself.
"Dude, calm down, you're eighteen, not twenty-eight," Edwin stated firmly.
Derek moved his plate and placed his forehead to the table in frustration. "Damn that age difference," he murmured.
Smiling in utter amusement, Edwin put in, "Der, you just turned eighteen, so she doesn't have to worry about the legal part of it."
"So what should I do?" Derek muttered almost in desperation.
Edwin shrugged. "The ball is in her court…"
With a sigh, Derek kept his forehead to the table. He wasn't at all a patient guy and here he was in a position where he had no choice but to wait. He didn't like this… Not one bit.
Derek and Edwin went back to the apartment, packed up the older Venturi's car and said their good-bye's to each other. Derek was sad to see his brother go, but he'd have his bed back, the couch was giving him a back-ache.
"Take care of yourself, bro and you know I'm only a phone call away," Edwin pulled his younger brother in to a masculine, rough hug.
Derek nodded and replied, "Yeah, you too, Ed."
Edwin climbed in to his car and drove off. Derek stayed in the middle of the parking lot in deep contemplation of their conversation earlier. The teenager had never been so confused in his entire life. He'd also never felt this way for any girl, yet alone woman. Why did this have to be so complicating?
Casey wasn't back from work yet, she had told him that she had a lot of grading to do, which he knew was true. She was serious about her career; she was serious about her life. Derek sat on one of the steps of the staircase leading to the apartment and decided to wait for her arrival.
She was blaring music, but it didn't keep her from hearing her own thoughts… She still thought about it, she still thought about him. This was wrong, not to mention she could lose her job, she couldn't risk that, could she? This whole situation confused her and she began to doubt her ability to make rational choices. All she wanted to do was get back to her apartment, take a shower and get to bed.
While her mind was on Derek, her instincts drove her in to the parking stall she usually occupied, then she exited the car and began her ascent up the stairs, but not before seeing Derek sitting on the top step with his elbows resting above his knee caps.
Her mind seemed to just freeze as she couldn't find words to fill the awkward silence between them. She could feel her heart in her throat and her palms began to sweat. Just stay calm… He's just a boy… He's another one of your students… She thought as she regained her composure and walked up the steps. "Mister Venturi," she said coldly.
He stood quickly, "we need to talk."
Casey made her way in to the apartment as he followed, awaiting a response.
A bit irritated, he grabbed her arm and said, "Don't ignore me, Casey."
She closed her eyed and took a deep breath as if to prepare her for the next moment in time. She turned to face him; her hair was up in a loose messy bun, her shirt un-tucked from her trousers. She threw her large purse on to the sofa and said, "Derek, I don't have time for this."
"Just hear me out," he paced around for a moment. "Casey, I know that you regret what happened between us." He seemed to just study her for a moment. "But we can just pretend it never happened, if that's what you want."
He was giving her a chance to have a clean slate, but was there a catch? There had to be something attached to his offer, right? She crossed her arms suspiciously, "Really? Who do I have to kill?"
He grinned handsomely which could make any girl weak in the knees. "No one, I just know how important your career is to you," he replied sincerely.
There was a brief moment of silence between them as Casey thought carefully about his offer. Is this what she really wanted? Being the safe and cautious person she is, Casey finally replied, "Alright, I accept."
Derek smiled and said, "Great, now things can just go back to the way they were, right?"
She nodded, "right," and forced a smile of assurance for him. "So, the spring dance is approaching rapidly, do you have a prospective date?" she asked him curiously.
He shook his head, "no."
"You should take Sheila," Casey suggested quickly. "I mean, why not, right?" she shrugged.
Derek let out a short breath and replied, "Yeah, I guess I'll think about it." He added before she could walk out, "You should try going out with Mister Thomas from PE. He seems interested in you."
"Thank you, I'll think about it." she smiled at him then retreated to her room. She leaned her back against the door and sighed unsure of the decision she had just made. What had she just done pushing Derek to go out with Sheila like that? Shaking her head, escaping her unreasonable thoughts, she began to prepare for bed.
Derek lay on his bed with his hands resting behind his head. He was undeniably hurt, yet still hopelessly in love. How the hell was he going to control his crazy raging hormones? He could just go out with Sheila again and pretend she's Casey, but that just wouldn't feel right… What other option did he have after all? He couldn't free himself from Casey's grasp; she was just so perfect and so wrong all at the same time. He knew one thing for sure; he definitely would love a future with her.
His cell phone rang, interrupting his thought process. "Hello," he answered. Who could be calling him at this time of night? He didn't even bother looking at the caller ID.
"Der, what the hell have you been doing dude?"
The voice sounded familiar. "Sam?"
"Yeah!" was the response.
Derek sighed in to the phone, "Dude, you just saw me at school."
"Barely," Sam's deep voice interjected. "I feel like you dumped me without actually dumping me," he mused.
Derek chuckled. "Dude, that is so gay."
Sam laughed. "How has it been?"
"It's been…" Derek trailed off. He didn't feel like explaining his whole living situation and especially not Casey. I mean, sure, Sam was his best friend, but he couldn't take a chance. "It's been okay," he finished.
"I can imagine, with your parents' divorce and stuff…" Sam said awkwardly.
"I'm pretty beat, dude, I'll just see your gay ass at school tomorrow," Derek said jokingly, he knew Sam meant well and was just concerned for his best friend.
"Alright dude, talk to you later," Sam said before hanging up the phone.
Derek took a deep cleansing breath as he placed the phone at his side and closed his eyes. He didn't bother changing his clothes; he was way too depressed to do anything really. All he wanted to do was forget about everything. His dad's stupidity and obsession with young women, his mom's stubbornness and selfishness, even Casey… He wanted to forget about loving her, forget that he kissed her soft naturally pink lips, that he touched her soft sun-kissed skin and the smell of her long, thick, wavy auburn hair… He just wanted to forget about it all and that's what he was determined to do…
The following day as Casey sat in the teachers' lounge she spotted the PE teacher Derek suggested that she date. He was sitting down by the window, soaking in the warmth of the sun and eating a sandwich. His name was Will Thomas and he had a very toned body, handsome dark features and dark brown hair. He wore black track pants and a fitted black t-shirt which exposed his well defined pectoral muscles. A well built man indeed and on the younger side of the age spectrum.
She sat beside him with her lunch sack and smiled at him, "Nice day out."
Will looked up at her, a look of surprise on his features, which quickly diminished as he said, "You're right, it is." He smiled, "How are you today, Miss Mcdonald?"
"I'm doing well and please, call me Casey," she insisted.
He took a swig of his orange juice bottle and grinned, "Alright, Casey it is and by all means call me Will."
There was a brief silence between the two before Will asked, "So what brings you to this side of the teachers' lounge?"
Casey laughed quietly. "Am I not allowed over here?"
"No, of course you are," he replied a bit amused.
"I don't know, you eat lunch alone here every day almost, so I just thought it'd be a polite thing to join you," she said trying to sound logical.
He just couldn't seem to stop smiling at her and she had to admit that he had a very cute smile. Not as cute as Derek's smile though… The evil thought just snuck its way in, making her feel guilty for talking to Will.
"Thank you for being so polite," he chuckled in delight. "I'm afraid I must confess that it's been a while since I've communicated with a beautiful woman."
She glanced at him surprised by his flirtiness. "Nice line, Will," she teased him. "Listen, I don't really get out much these days, so would you like to go out for a drink some time?"
Will was surprised by her forwardness. Even Casey was surprised by her forwardness. Was she doing this because of Derek? Of course she was…
"Well Casey, I would love to get a drink with you some time," he leaned over to her before he stood up and said, "I have to get to class, meet me at 'The Bulls-eye' whenever you're done here, I'll be there waiting."
As Casey watched him walk out of the teachers' lounge she began to doubt herself once again and the decision she made to pursue a relationship with Will. It didn't have to be anything serious; it could just be something to take her mind off of a certain someone. She tried to justify her actions, but she knew that she was just using the poor guy.
It soon came time for Derek's tutoring session with his favorite teacher. As he sat in the classroom alone with Casey, he couldn't shake the feelings he had for her. They were just so strong… He felt powerless…
"Derek, I took your advice and asked Mister Thomas out," Casey said bluntly, not looking him in the eye.
His heart sank in to his stomach and he suddenly felt sick. "Really," was all he could say. "That's good," he faked a smile. "I took your advice and asked Sheila to the dance." Well... He was going to ask Sheila out, but he'd never tell Casey that. He wanted to assure her that he was doing well in moving on just as she was.
"I'm glad," Casey said sounding a bit over-cheerful.
There was an awkward silence between them. Derek wished he could just stop feeling, but that seemed to be impossible in itself. He stared down at his fiddling thumbs before he looked up at her and said, "Shall we continue with our lesson then?"
She nodded. "Of course," she stumbled over her words a bit before saying, "turn to chapter eight in the text and you'll see some examples…"
Derek's breathed in deeply and slowly exhaled, trying to gather his rational thoughts and empty out the illogical ones. Most of what Casey was saying about the lesson wasn't computing. He began to doubt his ability to pass all his classes and graduate. He had to graduate, he had to get in to a good college so he can get a good stable job, marry Casey and start a family with her. It seemed so far off, would this plan follow through or would he just settle for what he could get? That was the question…