Bradin told himself he would not lose his head. He promised himself that he'd talk rationally until he knew what was going on. It really sucked that his will power was significantly less than he hoped it would be.

Why was everything on her terms? It wasn't fair. He should have some say in the way things were going. The crappy thing was that it wasn't like she was making him do anything. He was lost in her willingly.

No. No! He had more will power than this. He refused to let some girl control him. He was turning into a borderline obsessive sap, and that wasn't who he was.

If she didn't want an emotional connection, then he'd make sure that he got as much out of a physical one that he possibly could.


"Westerly." She smirked.

"I've made a decision."


"I won't push you anymore."

"Given up on the whole emotional relationship, have you?"

"But I don't want to be cut out of your life completely."

"Of course you don't. But you're being a good boy now. And good boys get rewarded." She grinned and grabbed his arm. "That is, if you want to be rewarded." He nodded briskly and she led him to an empty classroom. As far as rewards go, he'd have to say this was the best kind there was.

Once she shut the door discreetly, Bradin tried to push her against the wall. It was long since obvious that she disliked being on the bottom and she pushed him right back. Her lips and tongue traveled everywhere and by the time twenty minutes were up, he looked considerably more disheveled than he had looked coming in. His hair was a mess, his clothes wrinkled, and his expression slightly dazed.

"Bradin." Kris touched his shoulder as they left the room. "Listen. I know you want to be with me. But, as I've been trying really hard to tell you, I don't want to be with you-"

"No, it's okay. I'm fine with the benefits thing now."

"No, Bradin. I'm sorry, but today was the last time."

"You bored of me?"

"Don't take it too hard. And please don't stalk me."

"But wait- I still don't know anything about you!" Bradin grabbed her arm.

"You're not going to. Maybe I like being enigmatic. In any case, I just might need a break from guys in general. And besides, if I don't cut you loose completely you're probably going to fail your third period class."

"I don't care."

"Bradin. Let it go. You won't have me. Now, I'm giving you the chance to walk away on nice terms. We can pretend this was mutual and it won't hurt you as much. If you keep approaching me, I'm not going to be as gentle."

The blonde touched her cheek but she pulled back. Her voice was light, but her words were harsh. "If you touch me again, I'll hit you. Walk away, Westerly. Just walk away." She waited for him to drop his hand, watched as he swallowed his words. He knew now that no matter what he did, nothing would change. She wasn't ready for a relationship and he didn't want to alienate her. So he did as she asked and walked away. When he looked back at her, she was already gone.

She was the only girl who had ever told him no. Why is it that a person always wants to go after the one thing they can't have?

In any case, Bradin was sick of being her lap dog. He wanted to be with her, but after he completely threw away his dignity for the entire time the two were together, he needed to hang on to any scrap of self respect he still had.

Bradin was a horny, cocky, and sometimes a bit of a jackass. He had let sex with one girl disillusion him to who he really was. Down in his heart he was a good guy, but no one had ever described him as pathetic. He usually rolled with the punches aimed his way and he knew that the past few weeks had warped his character… Kris had somehow managed to change him into this pitiful sap.

He wouldn't stay that way. His pride stung again and again, Bradin decided to let her drop. There were things more important to him than girls, and one of those things included being true to himself. Shaking his head, Bradin realized he had sold out for her. Every characteristic he had mocked once upon a time, he had shown.

Not any more.

Bradin Westerly was not going to be any one's poodle. His days of being Kris's bitch were over.

Most of the town wanted to sleep with him for a lot less hassle, and he was not about to risk his reputation for a woman who had already made it clear that she didn't want to be with him. That just wasn't his style, and it was way past due time that he realized it.

A/N: thanks for reviewing, sorry for the delay. I know I should be writing more for a Different Path, and for those waiting for that update, I apologize. But hey, if you want a regularly updated story of mine, my Higher Ground 'Introspect' story is one I work on weekly. Sorry again.