Summer Sunshine – Chapter Ten

Previously

As I craned my neck around Jake and Paris, I noticed a fairly tall woman with blonde hair that had been dip-dyed emerald green. An intake of breath beside me, had me taking a second look;

"Juliet."

.:~*~:.

I heard a growl rip through the air and it took me a moment to realise it had been mine. Alex sent me an accusing glare and I sent her back a look that said, "Come on, you hate her too!" She shrugged at me and I grinned. Her eyes started to shine, bringing forward the intensity she was renowned for. Keeping an arm around me, Ashley stepped forward slightly, narrowing his eyes at the woman making her way towards us. Paris and Isla seemed to be watching with wide eyes, not quite believing what was happening.

Sammi seemed to snap and pulled away from Jinxx harshly, "What do you want?" she all but snarled. Juliet took a hesitant step back and her face fell into a look of startled confusion. Jinxx stepped forward, hand outstretched but stopped short. Andy's eyes seemed to flash through the shades of blue as fast as my breath raced through my lungs. Jake didn't look pleased to see the little entourage that was quickly gathering behind Juliet.

Stepping from behind the blonde, a dark haired woman shimmied her way forward, standing in front of Juliet like a barrier. Her eyes scanned our group, landing almost lustfully on Jake. He shifted uncomfortably from foot to foot. Paris squirmed a little in his tightening hold. He held her close and Christian did the same for Isla. Ash had an arm around my shoulders, preventing me from advancing further.

Chris and Amy seemed startled at the reaction she drew from us until their son spoke, "Juliet, why are you here?" The blonde looked confused for a moment before pouting, "Can't I see my own boyfriend?" Alex scoffed and Nickk snorted. I nearly jumped; had he been there the whole time? I recovered quickly and shook myself lightly. Taking in the brunette woman's face carefully, I nearly reeled in shock. Ella Cole's eyes were glinting dangerously and her thin mouth was smirking.

She took two steps forward, and Jake took three back. Paris untangled herself carefully and placed herself in front of him. Suddenly there was movement from Andy. He swayed frighteningly, before lurching forward – collapsing on the pavement. Then, things went black, before I was roughly shaken into opening my eyes. I heard screaming but after a minute, realised it was me.

Looking up into Ryan's distressed face had the tears coming hot and fast. It had been a dream. A lucid, vivid and horrendous dream. Launching myself at Ry, I wrapped my arms around his strong middle and squeezed. Thinking it over, I realised not all of it had been false. Ashley's arm was still broken, and Andy was still in a coma but Juliet and Ella had never showed face. That much was a relief. It's been three weeks since the fight and the nurses say Andy should be awake in another week and a half.

As Ryan rubbed my back soothingly, I sobbed quietly into his bare chest. Judging by the dimness of the room, it was early hours of the morning. Sitting back, I wiped my eyes and cheeks clear of any tears, before looking up at Ry. His eyes were starting to glaze over too, and I reached up to kiss his cheek. A slight creaking announced the arrival of my father, with Mom close behind.

I gave them a weak smile, and Ryan seemed to lean a little heavier on the wall. Mom's hand came to rest on Ryan's shoulder and Dad's landed on my head, ruffling my hair. I sighed lightly and slumped back into my pillows. Sixteen years old, and still having the baby treatment after a nightmare. For the love of Jinxx. But I can't complain too much, since I am the youngest. Even Alex is older than me! By two months, sure, but still! I moaned pitifully after glancing at my phone.

It was Monday.

Dad gave me a gentle smile, "You don't have to go to school if you don't think you're up to it." I thought it over. For the past month, I'd been going through the school process like a zombie. I was still maintaining my A- grades somehow. Isla's slipped down to a B average, and Paris has stopped coming altogether, but I don't think Andy's the reason. Even Nickk's dropped out for a bit. And that's spread through the years like wildfire.

Coming back to the present, I shook my head, "No dad. I'll go." I shifted my legs over the side and stood up. Dad stroked my hair as I walked past, and just before I closed the door, I heard Mom sternly warn Ryan, "You watch out for her, or there'll be no friends over for a month." I heard my brother snort indignantly, "Do you really have to tell me? She's my baby sister, of course I'll look after her!"

I smiled softly to myself and closed the door silently. As I padded downstairs in the dawning light, I heard birds chirping and horses next door snorting in the morning air. Barking dogs were heard from across the street and I counted down from five to hear, "Shep! Scotty! Quiet!" I snorted. Such original names for a Rough Collie and Scottish Terrier. Not. It was the same, every morning. Mrs Fairchild had two dogs, three cats and five children. Why does she need so many children, you might ask?

I have no clue.

Reaching the kitchen, had me hunting around in the fridge til I found my stash of waffles, and the chocolate. Bringing out the cooking utensils I needed, I set about cooking my waffles and melting the chocolate. 20 minutes later, both were done. I was feeling generous so I'd made some for the four of us. Looking through cupboards also found me some sugar and a fresh punnet of strawberries I remember Mom buying yesterday.

Arranging it all neatly on the table, I found our little bell under the sink and rang it, "Breakfast is done!" Thundering on the stairs had me almost ducking for cover, before Ryan, Mom and Dad all filed into the kitchen. Taking one look at the mini feast, Dad crowed, "We'll never eat all that!" Ryan chuckled, "Lucky I invited a guest then!" Just as the doorbell rang. Mom ran to answer it and exclaimed delightedly before ushering this mysterious guest in.

One guest turned out to be two and both were nearly bowled over. Ashley sidestepped to save his still injured arm, so Nate took the full force of my tackle hug. Landing heavily on the carpeted floor, Nate Rivers chuckled and hugged me back tightly. I stood up and helped him up, before turning back to Ashley and squeezed him carefully. He pecked my forehead and I sat him down on a chair, before gesturing for everyone else to sit too. As Ryan helped give out glasses, cutlery and plates, he joined me at the breakfast bar as there was no more room at the dining table.

Breakfast was fairly eventful that morning, as Ashley had news from the hospital, "I got a phone call last night, it seems Amy's gone back to Ohio but Chris has stayed with Andy. Jinxx and Sammi have offered him their holiday home here to use, and he's accepted. The nurse I spoke with seems to think that all vital signs are good and he should wake within 10-12 days." Mom clapped her hands happily, "That's wonderful news!" Dad beamed and Ryan thumped his fist lightly on the table, "Awesome!"

Ash also had news of the other band members, "Jake is apparently shacking up at Paris' house and CC's gone with Isla." I suddenly pointed at Dad, "Aha! I told you it wasn't Andy keeping Paris from school! When's the wedding do you reckon?" Dad nearly joked on his juice, while Ryan snorted into his milk. Mom sent them both reproachful looks. Ashley suddenly looked very uncomfortable and Dad looked at him quizzically, "What's the matter Ash?"

Ash took a deep breath and addressed my father, "Mr Reagan, I would like to ask you, for your blessing, to ask for your daughters hand..."

Ryan's breathing was coming fast, and my heart was pounding as Ashley finished his sentence;

"In marriage."

.:~*~:.

WOAH! What a twist! Want to find out what Hadley's dad says? Stay tuned for the next chapter!

R&R!

Outlaw xox