Ronnie yawned as she rubbed her eyes and squinted at the sun. She reached up and pulled the curtains closed. It was probably pretty late, considering the amount of activity she heard going on outside of the room. She turned around and placed the pillow over her head, trying to block out the noise.
The night before, they had gotten home at almost two in the morning. After everyone went out to dinner, they stopped downtown and wandered around the shops, talking and looking around. Everyone except Colton, that is.
Ronnie ran her thumb along her bottom lip. She still couldn't figure it out. The way he looked at Riley just wasn't normal. He obviously recognized her and knew her, but it wasn't like two old friends meeting up again. It was like he thought she disappeared and was seeing her ghost. Her reaction to him said the exact same thing. After standing still for nearly five minutes, Colton conjured up some excuse and said he had to go home and Riley did the same. She tried calling him, to make sure he was okay, but he kept forwarding her to voicemail. When she got home, she put her phone on the nightstand and collapsed on the bed. Tired and full, she assumed he'd call her back when he was ready.
She yawned again just as the door creaked open. "Hey, you up?"
She rolled over and smiled at Will. "Yes. I couldn't get back to sleep with all that ruckus going on outside. I'm still a little tired." He walked over and sat next to her. "Well, you had to get up sooner or later." He placed a tender kiss on her forehead. "Happy Birthday."
She smiled and wrapped her arms around him. "Thank you." They sat there for a few minutes before Will heard her snore. "Ron, are you sleeping?"
She awoke and looked up. "I told you I was still tired."
He laughed. "Come on, get up."
"No, I don't want to." She whined.
He got up and hoisted her over his shoulders. She giggled as he swung her around. "Will, stop!"
He walked toward the bathroom door and put her down. "No, you are going to brush your teeth and be downstairs in five minutes."
She groaned. "But it's my birthday."
"Exactly, and you can't spend it under the covers all day. Besides, then you won't get your surprises."
He laughed when she quickly grabbed her toothbrush and shut the door.
Marcus leaned back on the recliner and watched as she opened the refrigerator. "What do you want?" she called out from the kitchen.
He shrugged. "Water's fine."
Galadriel reached into the refrigerator and emerged with two bottles of water. She walked over and handed him one before taking a seat on the couch. She turned on the T.V and absentmindedly flipped through the channels while she took a sip.
It had been a few weeks since he had left the hospital. Everyday, she surprised him more and more with her generosity. Ever since their confrontation in the music store, she hadn't so much as given him a second glance and he knew she was still pissed at him. The day he called her from the hospital, he didn't actually believe she'd let him stay with her. In the past, he was always able to manipulate her into doing basically anything he wanted, but he had a feeling that this time was different. She wasn't helping him because he made her do it or pressured her to do it. She was helping him because she felt bad for him. It was like she felt pity for him. He had to admit, he didn't really like it. He didn't enjoy feeling helpless. But on the other hand, he did feel kind of guilty.
He would be the first to admit that he wasn't the nicest guy and he didn't treat her the best he could have. But that wasn't his fault. She just made him so angry sometimes and he needed to teach her a lesson so she wouldn't do it anymore. He knew that the booze he had every now and then didn't help much, but that wasn't his fault either. So what if he got a little crazy when he drank? Didn't everybody? Besides, it wasn't like he beat her and threw her across the room. He just gave her a stern talking to every now and then to keep her in check.
Still, the way she was treating him was a bit confusing. Clearly, she didn't want to get back together with him. They had been in the house together for a little over three weeks and she barely talked to him other than to ask him basic questions. Like the occasional, "do you want ketchup?" and "could you pass me the remote?" He didn't say anything either, not wanting to upset her. He really didn't have anywhere else to go and the last thing he needed was to piss her off even more than he already had.
The whole situation actually made him appreciate her a little more. There had to be something he liked about her, or else he wouldn't have kept her around as long as he had. But watching her the past few days had brought up some old feelings. She had changed quite a bit since they broke up. He noticed that her once dark hair had gotten a little lighter. Not a drastic change, but definitely noticeable. She had lost some weight, too. Not enough that she looked completely different, but enough that he noticed some curves that didn't seem to be there before. These days, she opted to wear maybe two or three earrings in each ear, rather than the half a dozen she used to. She seemed different, and he didn't know why, but he liked it. He liked it a lot.
"Why aren't you talking to me?" he asked. She looked up, startled, as if she never expected to hear his voice.
"What do you mean?"
"You're ignoring me. We haven't talked in days. It's like we're two strangers."
She sipped her water. "Aren't we?"
She put the bottle on the coffee table and looked up at him. "Marcus, why are you here?"
"Because I was in the hospital and you said I could-"
She shook her head and cut him off. "No I mean why were you in the hospital? I know I said you could stay here, but you never told me why you overdosed. I think as someone who's giving you a place to stay, I deserve to know."
He sighed and put his water down. "I didn't do it on purpose. I was drunk and I was at the pier with some of the guys. I was a little down so I thought a night out would help. I got in my car around four in the morning and I was getting a headache. I had some pain killers so I took some. I don't even know how many, I just swallowed as much as I could and drank some beer. I felt a little woozy and then everything just sort of went black."
"So it wasn't on purpose?"
"I'm not really sure. Yeah, I was drunk, but I was a little aware of what I was doing. I didn't know what was going to happen, but I knew that if I went too far and hurt myself, I wouldn't really care."
Galadriel exhaled. "Why not?"
"Because that's how I live my life. I just don't care. Lately it's been a little hard for me." He rubbed his chin. "I don't really have any money and I've been fighting with the guys. I'm on my own, as usual. But now it seems like I'm really alone."
Galadriel sighed and turned around. Marcus stared at her. "Besides, I kind of miss you." She turned back around to face him. "What?"
"I know I've been a little out of it lately. I'm just lost because I don't really know why I'm here, either. When I called you, I never thought you'd actually let me stay here. Now I'm trying to figure out why you did."
"Because you needed my help."
"I know. But I don't deserve it." He got up and sat next to her. He felt her pull back but he stayed where he was. He wanted her to hear this. "You're a good person, Galadriel. After everything I put you through, you still took me in. I don't deserve a speck of your attention and yet I'm sitting in your living room. These past few weeks have made me appreciate you and I'm sorry for everything. I'm sorry for putting you through all that crap and I'm sorry for treating you like trash all these years. I wouldn't blame you if you wanted to kick my ass right now."
She crossed her arms. "I do."
Marcus chuckled and he saw her give a faint smile. "I guess I'm just trying to say thank you. Without you, I don't know where I would be. I know this probably isn't what you want to hear right now, but I need you to know that I still care about you, Galadriel." He moved closer to her, but this time she didn't pull back.
"I still care about you and I miss you. I know my chances are slim and the feeling probably isn't mutual but I still needed to tell you. I still love you."
She simply looked back at him, as if hypnotized by his words. Her face was a mixture of confusion and uncertainty.
He cupped the side of her face and leaned in closer to her. He whispered softly in her ear, "I love you" before he leaned in and placed his lips against hers.
"Okay, open mine first!" Megan yelled enthusiastically. They were all sitting at the table having breakfast while Ronnie opened her gifts.
"Okay, okay." She said. She ripped off the paper and inside was an antique musical jewelry holder, along with about a thousand pieces of jewelry.
"Wow, this is so nice. Thank you." She leaned over and hugged her.
Megan smiled. "You're welcome. It's entirely from me, by the way. This one had nothing to do with it." She pointed to Daniel who was stuffing his face with pancakes.e He
He put up his hands defensively. "It's not my fault. She wouldn't let me help. A woman with a credit card is a like a loaded cannon ready to explode."
Tom laughed until Susan shot him a look. Next, Susan handed Ronnie her gift which was a new laptop case. Will grabbed her gift from Kim and Brian which had come in the mail the night before. After she opened it, Jonah grabbed his gift.
"This one is from me." He said.
She pinched his cheek before opening up the box. Inside was a vintage Polaroid camera.
"Oh my gosh. Jonah, this is awesome. How could you afford this?"
Jonah placed his finger on his temple. "Well, my allowance, some extra chores, and a lot of blackmail." He looked up at Will with a knowing smile.
"This is amazing. Thank you." She leaned over and hugged him. "You're welcome. I know how much you wanted one. You deserve it."
Ronnie had to hold back the tear that threatened to leave her eye.
After all the gifts, they ate breakfast. Once they were done, Ronnie walked into the kitchen to help with the dishes before Will pulled her away.
"Oh no you don't. It's your birthday. You shouldn't be washing dishes. Besides, you have to get ready."
"Ready for what?" she asked.
Will pulled her toward his bedroom. "We're going somewhere."
On the bed were two suitcases. Ronnie turned toward him. "What is all this?"
"You need clothes to go on a trip don't you? Now go on and take a shower." He looked at his watch. "We have to leave in an hour." He walked out of the room.
"But where are we going?" Ronnie yelled. Will poked his head through the door. "If I told you it wouldn't be a surprise, would it?"
Ronnie leaned her head against the window until she saw the airport sign. She looked toward Will, who had his eyes focused on the road. "The airport? We're flying?"
"Mmm-hmm." He made a turn and drove up to the second floor parking area.
After they parked, he reached into the trunk and grabbed their suitcases. He hadn't let Ronnie look in them, thinking she might figure out their destination if she saw what was inside. She scoffed at him when he explained it, thinking it was ridiculous.
Once they got through the rigorous airport process, they made their way onto the plane. Ronnie sat next to the window while Will took the aisle seat.
"So you're really not going to tell me where we're going?" she asked.
Will removed a strand of hair from her face. "You really don't understand the point of a surprise do you?"
She flicked him in the ear. "Don't get smart. I just want to know where we're going. Not everyday do I get whisked on a plane with no clue of my destination."
He smiled and kissed her. "Don't worry. I'm sure you won't be disappointed."
"So how long is this flight?"
"About forty five minutes." He said. She looked up at him. "That's kind of short. Why didn't we just drive?"
Will reached into his carry-on bag and pulled out a box. "Because I can't give you my full attention if I'm driving. I didn't even give you my gift yet." He handed her the box.
She took it and started to rip the paper. "I thought this trip was my gift."
He nodded. "It's one of them. There's a lot more to come."
Ronnie ripped off the last of the paper and then opened the box. Inside was a photo album. On the front was a picture she recognized very well. It was of her and Will at Megan's wedding. She smiled at him before opening it up. Inside were various pictures of both of them from last summer. There were some fairly new ones she remembered them taking in New York through out the school year. She saw tons of Jonah and Megan, along with the rest of his family. She giggled at the ones of him as a baby, saying how cute he was.
Ronnie was so lost in her gift that she didn't even notice the plane taking off. The flight attendant had to remind them to buckle their seat belts.
"This is beautiful. Thank you so much." She said. Will pulled down the shade on the window. "That's not all. Look at this." He turned off their light and flicked a switch in the back of the album. Instantly, a light inside each page illuminated every picture, giving them a glowing affect. She turned every page over and over again in awe. When she was done, she kissed his cheek.
"Thank you." She said again.
"You're welcome. I'm happy you like it. I love you."
She pulled his face to hers and kissed him, loving the fact that she was celebrating her birthday with such a loving and caring person. "I love you, too."
Ashley rang the doorbell again and again, almost impatiently. Why isn't anyone answering? She thought. After a while, Tom appeared.
"Oh, hi Ashley. This is a surprise." He said.
"Hi, Mr. Blakelee. Is Will here?" she asked.
"No, you just missed him. He left with Ronnie for the weekend."
Ashley's face fell. "Oh."
"Yeah, but they'll be back in a couple of days. You want me to tell him you stopped by?"
Ashley shook her head. "No, it wasn't really important anyway. I'll just go home."
As she walked down the steps, she pulled the envelope out of her pocket and ripped it in half, trying to wipe the tears from her face.
A/N: As always, thanks for reading. I know the proposal seems long overdue but it's coming very soon. Very very soon, like next chapter soon. (Cough, cough) lol
I've also been doing POVs from basically all the characters. I like to let you guys know what they think and their personalities. I hope you guys got a bit of Marcus's personality in his POV. I would love to hear your feedback on him and Galadriel. I wonder what you guys think her reaction will be to the kiss. Let me know!
NverSayNver: If I told you whether they stayed together or not, it would ruin the story. Don't worry, I'm a Ronnie and Will fan also and I think they're meant to be together. But I have this story planned out and I can't let you know what's going to happen. I'm not saying whether they're going to stay together or whether they're going to break up, but I hope you'll continue to read it and see how the plot unfolds for yourself. I think you'll be very pleased and surprised.
Anyway, please review and let me know what you think. Update coming soon.