"Good to be home." I was looking up at the rather old looking front door of my family's home. The house was ridiculously sized, especially since my mother and brother were the only one's living in it at this time.
I walked up to the door with my suitcase wheeling behind me and up the steps. When I got to the door I debated whether or not to ring the bell or just walk in. I hadn't been home in a few months. I'd spent the first semester of my senior year in Italy. My brother and I were almost a year apart in age down to the month, but I was still younger. I had skipped a grade in Junior high, putting my brother and myself in the same graduating class.
Deciding to just walk in I pressed down on the door handle and pushed the heavy wood open. I walked in to find the foyer darkly lit. "Hello!" I called out somewhat.
I heard footsteps in the upstairs hall and when I looked up to the top of the stairs, their stood my brother. We had very few similarities. Besides our black hair we almost had nothing else in common, accept for DNA. My brother took after my father, deceased I might add, with dark brown eyes and tanned skin with his classic good looks. And I tended to look more like my mother, I had a very vintage female look as she used to say. I had gray eyes and fair skin. I stood out in my family that was for certain. Though I took after my mother in the looks department, no one was really certain how I got my gray eyes. My mother's were hazel.
A smile graced my lips as I released my suitcase and stood hands on my hips. My denim skirt, black and purple polka dot bustier, black chuck taylor lace up knee high boots and black and purple knee high tube socks, stuck out in great contrast to the elegant foyer in which I stood.
"Caleb." I said sweetly.
He made his way down the stairs and grabbed me in a tight embrace. "It's so good to have you home sis. So much has been going on."
"So I've heard. How are the guys?" I asked.
Caleb broke the hug setting me back on my feet. "Good, Tyler and Pogue are good."
"And Reid?" Reid and I were a thing, well had been. When I left he said that he thought we should see other people. In Reid language it meant he wasn't sure he could be true to me if I wasn't around. So I agreed because it was what he wanted. Caleb gave Reid hell for it, since I left that night after crying my eyes out into my human pillow, my brother.
"Fine." Caleb bit out.
I smiled at him. "Caleb, Reid was right to break things off, he's a bit of a flirt and if I was gone and found out he'd cheated on me it would've been ten times worse."
"So you're back to finish out your senior year at Spencer?" Caleb changed the subject.
I nodded. "Yep."
"So how was Italy?"
"Italy...was...incredible." I said breathlessly a smile on my lips. "I took to Rome like I was home. It was absolutely wonderful. I made friends with a few kids from school. I had real Italian food for dinner every night, and I got some amazing pictures. I have to go to the photo booth at the pharmacy and print like a million pictures for you." Caleb laughed at my enthusiasm and gave me another squeeze.
"Well I'm glad you had a great time. And while I didn't have my little sister around to disturb me I sort of met someone." He said shyly.
I grinned. "Really? A girl?"
"Yes a girl you dork." He ruffed my hair and I pushed his hands away laughing. There was a knock at the door. "And that would be her, Kate and the guys right now. "
"Oh uh I'm going to go upstairs and put my suitcase in my room, be down in a few?" It wasn't really a question but Caleb nodded and patted my shoulder.
"I really am glad your home." Caleb smiled. I grinned back.
"Me to." I hurried off up the staircase after snatching my suitcase, just as I turned to go down the hall I heard the front door open.
"Hey man." Pogue.
"What's up?" Tyler.
And the faintest as I got further away. "Dude you look like shit." I suppressed a small laugh. Typical Reid. I made it to my room and opened the door. I was suddenly reminded of how different my room was from that of my room in Italy. I'd stayed in a very stunning Villa my mother had gotten for me. My room their was small, and consisted of a simple metal framed bed with white linens. The thin double doors leading to the small second floor patio were hidden by white curtains and the walls were simply white.
But my room here was an extravagant mess, or so I liked to think. My walls were all black, my ceiling the same, the carpet beneath my feet was a royal blue, and my bedding was black and white zebra print. The double doors that were leading to my own second story balcony were hidden by white curtains. All in all this bedroom was almost the complete opposite of my room in Italy, and to be honest I'd missed the color. I had several large framed photos on my walls, different animals of course. I'd grown up loving animals.
I set my suitcase on my four poster canopy bed and walked to my en-suite bathroom. It was more my mother's style rather than my own. It was plain and simple. Tile covered the walls and floor, the tube was against the far wall with a sliding glass door so I could shower as well. Their was a toilet and a sink, keeping my bathroom very simplistic, but I didn't really need more than that. I checked my hair and make-up in the mirror went back in to my room. Pictures were on my royal blue wood painted five drawer dresser across from my bed. And their were more pictures on my two night tables on either side of my bed. They all consisted of family and friends.
Friends. Had any one besides my brother really missed me? Well I knew of one person who did, she wrote me an email every other day. Evangeline Parry. Pogue's little sister, she was eight and I was the closest she had to a 'sister figure' since I was ten years older than her. Pogue's mother had passed away shortly after giving birth to young Evangeline, leaving Wade Parry and his son to raise a young infant girl. I'd stepped in to be the big sister role model when I was twelve and Evan was two.
Evangeline was a shy quiet girl, not very outspoken like her brother at all. She inherited that particular trait from the late Jillian Parry. Jillian or aunt Jilly as all the kids had referred to her growing up, was soft spoken and very sweet. How she'd fallen in love with a blunt man like Wade Parry had baffled many people. Her death had been devastating to everyone, especially Pogue, so he'd decided to be the best older brother he could. And he was.
And then their was Rylee Simms, my oldest friend. She and Tyler were twins, fraternal twins. They both had stunning eyes and dark hair. Tyler's hair was actually natural where as Rylee liked to dye hers on a regular basis, to steer clear of the 'norms'. Georgie and Trevor were great parents to both of their kids. Tyler took after his father while Rylee, was almost a perfect mix of both. They were polar opposites though. Tyler was shy quiet and studious, while Rylee prided herself on being loud, boisterous and artistic more so than brain smart.
I knew Rylee had been really upset with me when I'd chosen to start my senior year in Italy. We were supposed to spend our last year in High school together, but the opportunity arose for me to go to Italy and I jumped at the chance. I'd always wanted to go. Rylee had practically thrown a tantrum that I wouldn't be there to start off our year together at the grand Dells party. But I told her if she was my friend she'd support me. I'd understood her position though, I was leaving her with four guys and a lovesick Kate which wasn't much better than a guy at this point since she'd always be with Pogue. I felt microscopically bad and even worse when I found out Reid and Tyler had beat up a potential boyfriend who asked her to fall fest.
So with one last glance around my room and a smile I headed back to see everyone. I was sure Rylee wasn't downstairs, cause she rarely went anywhere with the guys on a Saturday. It was her painting day and she liked to sit up in her room and just paint. And Evangeline was to young to be traveling around with the others.
As I reached the bottom step I could hear the conversation in the grand living room. "I don't know what he was thinking?" That was Tyler and it had me quite curious.
"Would you shut up baby boy?" Reid bit out.
"Let us see, Reid?" That was a voice I didn't recognize. It was a girl, must be Caleb's new girlfriend.
I continued to listen as I stood to the side of the entranceway leading in to the grand living room. "No." Reid replied curtly.
"Oh come on why not?" Kate was teasing him. What had Reid done that he didn't want anyone to see?
"No." Reid repeated.
"Dude it can't be that bad." Pogue sounded as though he was about to laugh.
"Reid if you don't like it maybe Sarah and I can fix it." Kate offered. Fix what? What had Reid changed?
"It isn't that I don't like it, I just don't need your guys' approval." Reid scoffed. I could practically see him rolling his eyes and crossing his arms over his chest in a defensive manor.
I decided to interrupt and stepped in to the entrance way. "Sono indietro!" (I'm back!) I said raising my arms to the sides and posing jokingly.
"Guys Cordi's home from Italy." Caleb said.
"No dipshit we couldn't see that." Reid bit out bitterly and moved passed me through the foyer and out the front door.
"What's got his panties in a twist?" I asked calmly as I turned back to the others. I didn't get a response right away since Kate chose that moment to stop staring stupidly and tackled me to the ground in a hug. "Girl unless you want everyone to see I'm not wearing panties I suggest you get up." Kate jumped up quickly and I climbed to my feet laughing. "Sorry, I was only kidding." She hugged me again.
"Damn have I missed you." She said letting me go, Tyler and Pogue engulfed me in a group hug.
"Good to have you home from Italy Squirt." Pogue teased ruffling my hair as they both pulled away from me.
I smiled. "Good to be home, like I told Caleb."
"Uh..." Caleb grabbed the 'new girls' hand and brought her towards us.
"Sarah this is my sister Cordi, Cordi this is Sarah my girlfriend." Caleb introduced us quickly.
I smiled and held my hand out to Sarah. "It's nice to meet you."
She smiled back. "You to." Sarah seemed like a sweet girl and I could tell by the way Caleb was looking at her, that he cared for her a lot. Quite possibly he was even falling in love with her. "Caleb's mentioned you a few times."
I didn't want to upset her by telling her, he hadn't mentioned her on any occasion while I was gone. But that was typical Caleb, he would start seeing someone and not tell me or introduce me unless he thought it was going somewhere. He told me once it was so I wouldn't get attached in case things didn't work out between him and whoever. So any girl that actually got to meet his family was really special and obviously Sarah was. "Really? Good things I hope." I said jokingly.
"So I think I 'm going to go see what Reid's problem is." I told the others. "I want to tell you guys all about Italy, but I don't want to have to tell the stories a million times." They agreed.
"Just be careful, Reid's been a bit pissy lately, Uncle Rich has been hounding him again." Tyler informed me.
I sighed and nodded, no wonder Reid's panties were in a bunch. Uncle Rich could be a little overbearing sometimes, we all saw it even Aunt Melinda thought so, but Uncle Rich thought Reid needed tough love. I'm not saying he's a bad father, he's just hard on Reid sometimes.
So I headed out the front door and saw Reid sitting on the front steps. "Hey stranger." He glanced over his shoulder and then back to the driveway, where Tyler's Hummer was parked behind Caleb's mustang. He dropped the cigarette between his fingers onto the stone driveway and stepped on it with a boot adorn foot. "So you giving me the silent treatment? Doesn't seem fair really since you broke up with me." I sat next to him and he looked over at me, those blue eyes that no one else could read, displaying only one emotion to me. Loneliness.
"How was your trip?" He asked looking away.
Ok I could build up to the question of what's bothering him. This is just how Reid works, you have to know how to steer him around. And I knew well. "Good, I had a lot of fun. Made some friends." I answered honestly.
"Guy friends?" Reid asked.
I let out a small laugh and shook my head. "Yes, but not what you're thinking." I replied sweetly. "So what did you do?"
"I overheard part of your conversation, what exactly did you do?" I asked.
Reid looked over at me and then back at the cars. "Something stupid."
"You do a lot of stupid things, this can't be that bad." I nudged his shoulder a little. Reid sighed and reached up with one fingerless gloved hand and grabbed his beanie pulling it from his head. In the dimming light of the night sky and the small porch light I could see the faint coloring of brown were blond use to be. I wasn't exactly certain what to say. I'd always seen Reid as a blond, and his hair was always cut to fall over his forehead, but now it was a little shorter and messy but I could tell it was styled forward at least somewhat. "Oh wow." I said unable to stop staring.
"Stupid right? I was having a bad day, so I went and bought some hair dye. Thought if I changed the way I looked I'd feel a little better." Reid never could hide the truth from me. Before we dated I was usually the person he would go to to just talk, cause I would listen. Tyler would to but he always felt like he was making Tyler take sides. I lifted my hand to Reid's head and gently ran my fingers through the newly light brown tresses to straighten out the wild hairs. I heard Reid sigh when my fingers came in contact with his scalp. "So go ahead, tell me how stupid I am."
Deciding that I actually liked it I shook me head. "I can't." He looked over at me again. "I actually really like it. It's different."
"Really?" Reid asked.
"As long as you didn't do it to fit in with the guys, yeah."
"Like I said bad day. You know me I don't like fitting in." Reid replied. I stopped fixing his hair and set my hands on my thighs.
"Well I like it." I affirmed. "So want to tell me what's bothering you?"
Reid shrugged and pulled some keys from his jacket pocket and began fiddling with them. "Dad's jumping down my throat again about how my grades suck and no college is going to want me."
Uncle Rich would not accept the fact that Reid wasn't going to go to college. Reid had no desire to go in to the family business of real estate. "He always does this Reid why do you still let it get to you?"
"Because he's right, I'm not good enough for anything. I. Have. No. Ambition." He punctuated each word at the end. "And to top it off mom thinks breaking up with you is the stupidest thing I've ever done."
"Well I'll have to agree with your mom on that." I said playfully nudging him in the shoulder again. "But I don't want you thinking you're not good enough, cause you're great. You really are and whatever you do you're going to be amazing at it and you'll be able to throw that in Uncle Rich's face."
"What if he's right? I'm not smart like the other's, I don't really have many hobbies..." Reid trailed off, but I could hear the distinct sound of failure in his words. Reid was anything but a failure he had just been under Uncle Rich's thumb for far to long. And my brother never really helped either.
"Than you'll be a professional pool player and travel the globe, beating opponents from every nationality." I teased.
That got a genuine Reid Garwin smile. Yes a smile, he smiles just for me though. "Andare con confidenza nel senso dei vostri sogni. Vive la vita che avete immaginato." I'd been speaking Italian since I was five, it was almost impeccable. My father spoke it and as a young girl I idolized him, so I decided I wanted to learn. He taught me what he could and when he started getting sick, he hired a private teacher for me and Caleb.
"And what does that mean?" Reid asked looking over at me.
I smiled. "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined. Henry David Thoreau." Another came to mind that was fitting as well. "Fidar del vostro proprio istinto. I vostri errori hanno potuto pure essere I vostri propri, anziché qualcun'altro." My words were soft. "Trust your own instincts. Your mistakes might as well be your own, instead of someone else. I'm not sure who said that."
"You know, I have to agree with my mother." Reid said and looked away from me, a small blush fell on my cheeks.
I heard the front door open and looked behind me and saw Caleb. "It's December and you're sitting out here without a jacket, are you insane?" He asked.
My hands had suddenly started to rub at my arms, I hadn't even noticed I was cold. This is what happened when I was around Reid. He was intoxicating and everything around me was nonexistent. And then Caleb's eyes landed on Reid. I stood up and looked at my brother 'don't.' I mouthed wordlessly.
Reid stood up and followed me back in to the house. He tried to put his beanie back on but I grabbed his hand. "Leave it, I like it." I told him with a kind smile.
He glared at me somewhat and then nodded his head, his eyes softening and he stuffed the beanie in his jacket pocket. We walked in to the grand living room and all eyes focused on us. "Holy shit dude!" Pogue exclaimed looking at Reid.
I glared at him. "I think it looks nice and if anyone else has a rather negative comment about it, think twice before speaking because I might just shove my boot up your ass." Tyler and Pogue both diverted their gazes elsewhere where as Sarah and Kate smiled.
"I like it." Kate said kindly. Her and Reid weren't the best of friends since he'd insisted on hitting on her for the first two months of Pogue's and her relationship, but they were friendlier than sworn enemies.
Sarah nodded her head in agreement. "You look handsome." Reid didn't reply he simply stalked over to a single seat and plopped down hands in his pocket, body slumped one leg angled and bent properly at the knee the other stretched out. I made myself comfortable on the armrest of his chair.
"So, what was your trip like?" Tyler said quickly turning the subject to something else as Caleb walked in the room with a cup of coffee in hand. He took a seat and I began my tales.
"Welcome back Cordi." I smiled at the barista. Her name was Lacen and she was so sweet. She attended Spencer on scholarship and she worked at my favorite coffee place in town.
"Thanks Lace. So my usual please?"
"Sure thing." Lacey smiled and rung me up. I paid with the cash I'd retrieved from my wallet and then slipped the extra change into the tip jar. I walked around to sit in my usual corner and spotted and head of light brown hair. Smiling to myself I walked over. "You're up early for a sunday." I said taking a seat across from Reid.
He looked up from his coffee cup. "Spent most of my night thinking after I got home."
"Yeah? What about?" I asked casually. Lacen brought my coffee over and set it down looking at Reid.
"Would you like a refill?" She asked gesturing to his cup of black coffee. Reid shook his head and Lacen smiled over at me. "Let me know if you need anything."
I smiled and nodded at her. "Thanks."
"I thought about a lot of things." Reid finally replied after Lacen went back behind the counter.
"Like?" I probed.
Reid gave me that 'I'm-not-telling' look. "Nothing important."
"It has to be to keep you awake all night. Reid Garwin enjoys sleep about as much as he enjoys women and pool, maybe even more so." I teased him.
He gave a short curt laugh. "Fine, I was thinking about what you said last night. I started wondering about my future."
"Reid whatever you do with your future is up to you." I told him and sipped my caramel flavored latte.
Reid nodded. "Yeah I know. Then I got to thinking about you."
"Yeah. Remember when we broke up, you knew I wasn't sure I could be faithful while you were away?" I nodded silently. "Well I never did anything but flirt. And now that your back it just got me thinking is all."
"And I think...no I know that I've fallen completely in love with you. Last night when you ran your fingers through my hair I just, I realized how much I missed that. And I wanted to kiss you so bad." Reid chuckled mirthlessly. "I don't know when I turned into this mushy Reid, but it doesn't completely suck."
I smiled sweetly. "So what are you saying?"
"I think you know."
A mischievous grin appeared on my lips. "No, I don't."
"Ok have it your way. Cordi can we please pick up where we left off. I want you to be my girlfriend again. I made a stupid mistake breaking up with you." Reid said to appease me."Do you want the 'I'm nothing without you' romantic explanation?"
I giggled. "Heavens no. That would ruin all my imagery of you Reid Garwin. You are spontaneously romantic and very un- cliché please don't ruin that for me."
Reid smirked. "Ok I wont. So?"
"So..." I drawled. "I'll think about it." And with that I stood with my disposable coffee cup and headed out of the coffee shop. I leaned against the poll of a stop sign just on the corner and waited for Reid to exit the coffee shop. It didn't take long, he turned and headed away from me. "So I thought about it!" I called after him.
Reid stopped and turned around. He looked at me and cocked his head to the side. I started walking towards him, dropping my now empty coffee cup in a trash can to my right. I stopped a few feet from him. Reid took a few steps towards me, closing the space between us almost instantly. I looked up at him, I wasn't tall like my brother and his friends, but I wasn't extremely short either. "And?" He questioned.
A smirk lifted to corners of my mouth and I quickly reach up a perfectly manicured hand and grabbed his neck pulling him down our lips crashing together forcefully. Reid wrapped his arms around my waist, and pulled me in tighter as my hands sifted through his light brown hair. As I pulled back from his lips I sighed contently. "So was that answer enough for you or did you want another?" I asked jokingly.
Reid pressed his lips to mine again kissing me good and hard. I loved his kisses. I had missed his kisses. "Cord!"
We broke apart and I turned my head. "Rylee."
"What's this? You're back and already dating another guy?" She asked looking stunned.
I frowned. "Another guy?" She pointed to Reid and I giggled. "Oh no, Rylee..." I turned Reid's face to the side and grinned. "It's Reid."
"Oh, ok well then everything in the world is right again...hey wait Reid what the hell did you do to your head?" Rylee exclaimed.
"Not now Ry we're kind of busy." I told her with a devious grin.
"You'll call me later?" Rylee questioned with a smirk of her own.
I nodded. "Of course."
Rylee smiled. "Fine. Have fun." And she walked away.
Reid looked back down at me and smirked. "Where were we?"
"Uhm...right about...here." I murmured against his lips.
AN: Short and simple one shot. I wrote this while I was having my writers block with chapter 17 of Untouched and decided to post it and see what I kind of response it got. If you haven't seen pictures of Toby Hemingway as a brunette check out my page I'll add a link.