Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters and settings are the property of their respective owners. Original characters and plot are the property of the author. No money is being made from this work. No copyright infringement is intended.

A/N I know I know.. I suck.. But I am sorry, and I do have a legitimate excuse for my prolonged absence.

But seriously, I just got back from Japan for a long holiday with my family. I had to go computer-less for almost 2 weeks and no one to speak too apart from my parents and sis so needless to say, I was ready to kill myself or rather someone by the end of the trip. It was like being stuck in your own head for 2 weeks.

Not to mention, after taking a long leave there's just so much to do at work. First day back and my table looked like a bomb site. I guess that's what happens when interns go on vacation. Meh, at any rate, here's the next one, I'm so sorry for taking so long to get it up. I lost my thumb drive with EVERYTHING in it a couple of days ago and I felt really uninspired to write but then I got my shit together for a good few hours to re-construct this one so the next one won't be long. I hope. .

Oh and I'm ALSO sorry for not replying reviews as well, I'll get to it soon, my e-mail was just so spilling with crap that's I'd have to sit down and clear it all out one day.

Okay okay, I'll shut up now, go ahead, enjoy..

Collide

"Did you and Vanessa have sex after graduation?"

'Why on earth did I get myself suckered into this ordeal,' was what came to mind as Allie stared across the expensive looking hall with the soft tinkering music in the back ground and room full of should have been familiar faces. It was a reunion party, you'd think that you would recognize Some people that you attended the same school with 10 years ago, but no, apart from the obvious people she wanted to avoid, she caught no sight of anybody she could associate herself with.

The question seemed to grow and press all the air out of the space between them.

She let almost let out a groan of frustration but was rescued by a passing by waiter with a tray full drinks. Picking up a fluke before tipping her head back to down the entire contents, she set it back down on the tray and picked up another as the alcohol burning sensation travelled down her belly.

The silence was enough of an omission for her.

Not to mention the look of guilt that shone in his eyes. Mixed with the look of embarrassment that you'd see on a kid who was caught with his hands in a cookie jar.

In her opinion, Allie would be needing a lot more than just alcohol to get through the night, as she spotted a particular blonde with a protruding belly across the room whilst pretending to still be engaged in the conversation with.. Tad..? Tag? Or was it Todd? She couldn't remember, but apparently they had homeroom together and he was now a lawyer of sort, the sort who had a big office up on the umpteenth floor of a large building and ruthlessly ate Defense Attorney's for breakfast. Also in the conversation discussing something particularly dry was Graham or Greg or Grindewald something who was an accountant? Broker? Not that she was paying attention to either man anyway.

"I asked you who it was, point blank," she turned to look into his green eyes, honest and open, her voice breaking wondering what other things he 'edited' from her knowledge as her hands landed on the dashboard again, colliding with a thud.

"And I lied, point blank," he answered, letting his gaze falter, flickering downward in shame.

Not even having been two seconds in the room, she was bombarded with a swamp of guests. She would not have given a second thought to blowing these people off had she actually arrived with Bradin as originally planned but, she could never do that now, not when she was trying to avoid him and another certain individual like the bubonic plague. Having surround herself in the company of these strangers right now would be her best bet of surviving the night now that she had no luck whatsoever in locating the people she actually knew in high school, ie JJ, Kirsten, Zac, Connor. So instead, she would have to stand there, answering their questions, smiling politely and laughing at their lame attempts at being funny and grin through their pissing contest in attempts of 'winning the lady'.

"You know I am so genuinely sick right now that if I'd have eaten anything, I'd be throwing up all over the car right now," Allie seethed.

Her eyes continued to wander around the room until they spotted where she assumed the restrooms were. Quickly excusing herself from the people, she made her way towards it. Closing the doors behind her, she walked over to the lavish large mirrors hanging on the wall behind the counters and let out a deep breath that she hadn't even realize she was holding. Society gatherings were really not her thing.

She really would not have come. Allie had wanted to pack her bags and hop back onto a plane back out to New York, but no, she didn't want to go back to Ava's, so instead she went boutique hopping to look for some clothes, for a lack of a better thing to do to keep herself busy, before paying and slipping into a black dress and wandered aimlessly around town a little longer before absentmindedly entering a hairdressers to get her hair done. One thing led to another and before she knew it she was ready for a night out. So, hopping onto a taxi, she made her way to the hotel where the 'grand reunion' was held and as the taxi approached each set of traffic lights, she had hoped for it to turn red, with no such luck.

The traffic on the streets of Playa Linda was for once, nonexistent and despite her prayers, a tsunami didn't suddenly decide to hit drowning out Playa Linda entirely, nor did an earthquake happen, swallowing the small beach town whole, nor did a volcano erupt. And hell refused to freeze over as well. Well, it was just her luck.

She turned on the tap and stared at her own reflection.

"Did you and Vanessa have sex after graduation?"

The question seemed to grow and press all the air out of the space between them.

The silence was enough of an omission for her.

Not to mention the look of guilt that shone in his eyes. Mixed with the look of embarrassment that you'd see on a kid who was caught with his hands in a cookie jar.

With every second he refused to speak, her anger only burgeoned. The fact that she'd sacrificed her dignity in asking in the first place only managed to make her impossibly more irrate.The realization that he felt ashamed helped nothing whatsoever as the silence pounded between them. Her resentment was palpable, and growing.

"Allie-" he began but his voice was cut off by the slam of Allie's fist against the dashboard, the loud pound amplified in the small space, before bringing her hands up to her face, her voice was incredulous as she interjected, seething, "Damn it, Bradin,"

"I asked you who it was, point blank," she turned to look into his green eyes, honest and open, her voice breaking wondering what other things he 'edited' from her knowledge as her hands landed on the dashboard again, colliding with a thud.

"And I lied, point blank," he answered, letting his gaze falter, flickering downward in shame.

"Of course you did," she scoffed, looking away, though her voice emerged as insecure and hurt as she likely felt rather than angry and sarcastic as originally intended.

"It wasn't something that I felt you could've handled,"

"You know I am so genuinely sick right now that if I'd have eaten anything, I'd be throwing up all over the car right now," Allie seethed, puffing and trembling with empty fury, as tears formed in her eyes, but of anger, or sadness or disappointment or hurt, she couldn't be certain.

Bradin however was somehow wearing the expression of sheer panic that both confused and amused her. Was he expecting her to hit him, she wondered. His panic was perplexing. It would have been more amusing if she wasn't fighting the urge to inflict as much hurt on him as she could. But luckily, And truthfully, hitting him seemed senseless and unfulfilling and she damned his heartbroken gaze for taking the satisfaction it would have granted.

The door shut behind her as the very pregnant Vanessa sashayed into the restroom in all of her 3 inch heels Prada and red Valentino dress glory. Allie's fingers tightened its grip around the faucet before she shut the flow of water and pulled for the paper towels from the dispensers.

The clicking of the heels against the marble slabs came to halt when she realized the room wasn't vacant, her lips forming an 'O' at seeing who was in the room.

"Again, how awkward," Vanessa commented looking at Allie through the reflection.

"For me you mean? Not as awkward as this morning, believe me," Allie retorted, swiveling around to face Barbie, wait, pregnant Barbie for that matter as she caught sight of the completely manicured fingers, pedicured toes, 500 dollar hairdo and perfectly painted on make up.

"Not that it should matter but there is Some guilt involved here in the awkwardness," she commented tightly, setting down her glass of orange juice by the side.

Was Vanessa actually being, gasp, dare she say it, nice? Allie thought.

"Well, I wasn't aware that bastard children of Satan could feel guilt," Allie threw a punch at the pregnant woman. Confused she may be with the sudden civility, scared as she was with the sudden politeness in their interaction, she was not going to forget that she was speaking to Barbie Brigade, spawn of Satan, looks out only for her own best interest bitchy, slutty Vanessa.

"I know what you're thinking Allie, but it comes with the territory," she replied almost scathingly, almost, "I'm pretty, I'm a blonde, I'm not very smart, so my job in high school is to look pretty, act slutty and be a bitch," she explained as though life was really as simple as an equation, "Now, 10 years later, I'm still a blonde, still not very smart but married to a man who's got the mentality of a twelve-year-old boy, the body of a thirty-one-year-old man, a nine-figure contract with the league, twenty sponsorships, five houses, three yachts, ten cars, two snowmobiles, and a flaming case of herpes and my job is still to look pretty, act slutty and be a bitch, it's expected,"

Allie crossed her arms, listening to what Vanessa was saying and at the same time wondering if it were actually possible that there was more to her than the bitchy whore-esque exterior.

"But contrary to popular belief, I do have feelings, and I do feel terrible about what happened,"

"Ah, and what exactly was the 'what happened' that you feel 'terrible' about?," Allie questioned, without missing a beat, whether this part of her soul she was baring should she have one was real or not, the anger she had regarding the issue hadn't exactly dissipated, if anything, they had only had the chance to build over the past day, and what gave her the right to pick at the scab, she was the one who made the bloody cut in the first place, "For sleeping with.. him," she asked, unable to say his name, "Or for dishing it out over breakfast?"

"More of you overhearing it," Vanessa offered cattily before crossing her arms above her belly and leaning on the counter standing next to Allie and she raised an eyebrow, just as she was beginning to think that Vanessa DID have a soul. Then in a matter of factly tone, "You were broken up at the time,"

"We were broken up at the time," Bradin explained, but even he knew that he was grasping at straws.

"It didn't work for Ross on Friends and it sure as hell isn't gonna work on me!" she snapped, before taking a breath trying to maintain some sort of balance, "You know how I feel about her!" she almost spat, her heading beginning to spin, "There is no way that at some point while it was happening, you weren't thinking about how much I'd hate you for doing that,"

"It wasn't like that," he defended himself as his eyes filled and brimmed with the pain of her scathing assumption.

"No? Do you want another variation cause I have a million sickening scenarios running on a loop in my head right about now," she spat at him, holding back the tears.

"Als, I wasn't trying to hurt you,"

"Oooh.." Vanessa gasped, placing a palm on her protruding belly, "I think oine of them just kicked," she smiled, not having to explain further. The thing about high school reunions was that if you were the small town Playa Linda resident high school blondie who married a professional baseball player, word about your 7 month pregnancy of twins would really move pretty fast.

"It's the orange juice," Allie offered, nodding her head at the glass Vanessa had just put down, "I've seen it happen to a dozen mothers, makes the babies go crazy," she shared a bit of her experience as an intern.

And Vanessa smiled for a moment before a look of pain flitted across her face, "Ahh!"

"Whoa, what's going on?" Allie asked, slightly concerned now, evil or not, more than just your average whore or not, Vanessa was quiet heavily pregnant.

"Yeah, my doctor said it's just normal third trimester to.. Ahhh! Oh My God!" she cried, voice going several notes higher.

"No, no no," Allie responded, moving closer to the pregnant blonde, "I may not be an OBGYN but whatever this is, this is not normal,"

She cried again, clutching at her pregnant belly, "Oh God..!" Vanessa closed her eyes as she clutched her stomach, "Oh God, Oh God, Oh God," she whimpered.

"Okay, come on, here, sit down, sit down," Allie offered, pulling out a chair and holding her hand.

"I think I'm having contractions," Vanessa gasped and Allie felt something warm rise up in her throat, that was definitely Not good, she thought.

"This can't be happening. This can't be happening.. Oh.. God.!" Vanessa cried again.

"Hey, hey look at me, Vanessa, look at me, what hurts?" Allie asked, jumping to doctor mode, placing her hands on the sides of Vanessa's face to have her look directly at her.

The blonde in front of her then gave an audible gasp of pain, clutching her belly, "I think my water just broke," tears began to form in her eyes.

"Whoa whoa, shh.. Just breathe, okay, just breathe," Allie tried calming her, good or bad, okay or not okay, a panicked mother was definitely not going to do any good for a baby.

"They're not ready yet, they're not ready," Vanessa wheezed in successive gasps, "They're not ready," she parroted, pleading.

"I know, I know, everything's gonna be okay, okay?" Allie comforted the almost hysterical mother, holding her hand, while looking around the empty restroom hoping for some sort of help to come along.

"They're barely 29 weeks, Allie, they're not ready yet," she repeated yet again.

"Vanessa.. Vanessa! I'm gonna help you okay, just breathe," Allie ordered.

"Oh God.." she gasped, face contorted in pain, tears streaming down her face.

"Shh.. I'm gonna help you, okay," Allie comforted her, holding Vanessa's hands as they gripped hers tightly in pain, "I'm gonna go get someone to help you," she stated but Vanessa's hands tightened around hers refraining her from leaving.

"You can't," Vanessa gasped, "I can't, I.. Oh my god, I can't, I'm gonna push.,"

"No no no, don't push, Vanessa, do not push, do not push!" Allie yelped, voice increasing in volume as she succumbed to panic.

xXx

"So you delivered your first babies today," Bradin's voice echoed down the empty hospital hallway.

"Yeah," she whispered, not even looking up at him.

She was still in the dress, which was stained red at places, heels in her hands, hair piled up atop her head with loose strands framing her face slick, make up disheveled and still looking ridiculously gorgeous for someone who had just delivered two babies in a hotel ballroom's bathroom.

He sat next to her and draped his coat over her shoulders as she remained seated in the hospital hallway, unmoving.

"They weren't ready," she whispered shaking her head, staring at the heels she held in her hands, "The babies, they-" she repeated, voice trailing off, sadness radiating off them, doing nothing to mask the sound of hurt and disappointment, "They were barely 29 weeks, they had extremely low birth weight, probably had multiple undeveloped organs, even with the best NICU, they weren't ready and they're not gonna.." her voice trailed off again as she held back tears.

"Als-" he started saying, trying to form some sort of words of comfort, but whatever he had planned to say, dried up in his throat. He wasn't sure exactly what she was saying and he dare not hazard a guess.

"They weren't ready," she whispered shaking her head before turning her head to look at him finally, eyes brimming with tears.

'Neither are we' remains unspoken. Just like it ought to be, he thinks, but it still hangs in the air between them.

Nobody ought to say those words, he thinks, not ever. Because it's not true. Because whatever that they had between them, 10 years in the making, whatever that stood in their way, they should be ready fight through it, together, headstrong and unafraid. Because as clichéd as it sounds, they had each other. Because what they have should be able to endure whatever else life had to throw at them. It was a long, pregnant pause before she lets the unspoken words hang in the air as she places her heels back on her feet, getting up to leave.

"I wasn't trying to hurt you," he stated calmly, again.

He was pleading and he looked so desperate. So hopeless. So.. Hopelessly desperate that she wanted to just wrap her arms around him and hug him.

Or kiss him.

Or stab him in his fucking chest, and tell him to stay the hell away, the voice of logic crept up in her mind.

Only in the silence she realized how hard she was breathing as compared to Bradin who seemed perfectly calm. Dejected, broken, and desperate, but calm. But Allie's knees were weak. And the pure contrast of her weakness to the strength she felt minutes ago, portrayed by the gallant slamming of her fists on the dashboard, only succeeded in making her angrier still. So much so, that her hands which were curled into tight fists on the dashboard which had not moved since she pounded on it trembled with… some emotion she couldn't put a word to. Or maybe it wasn't ONE emotion exactly, it was a combination of two or more that coursed through her body.

"And where does that leave us?" he asked just as she stood up and turned her back on him.

"I don't know," came to a reply, her voice thick as she holds back tears without turning to face him. She shrugs off the coat, his coat and leaves it on the chair, all done without looking back at him as he watched.

Too many emotions. Too much.

The "whish woosh" the echoed in her ears began to garble and crackle and her chest felt tight and constricted.

The silence between them was deafening as his unspoken plea went ignored.

"Wow," she stated silently, "Imagine if you tried," she said nonchalantly, her heart weighing heavily against the words that she knew to be a low-blow, but at the same time her head not really caring. He'd already taken his share of his low-blows. It only seemed fair.

Getting out of the car and marching off, Aaliyah did all she could to clutch to her pride and dignity or whatever that was left of it to not dissolve in tears before him.

She can't. And she won't.

And he didn't chase her. Just as she knew he wouldn't.

He let her walk away from him.

Doing nothing to stop her.

A/N : I hope this wasn't too messy or incoherent. As usual, love it, hate it, love me, hate him, let me know what you think.. Drop your two pennies k.? Click that little button, go on, you want to….. :)