In the very far back of her mind Jade wonders how stupid she must look right now, with her mouth slightly agape and her eyes completely transfixed on the brunette girl in front of her. On Tori.
A million things race around in her head – Why is she here? Shouldn't she be in the rehabilitation facility? Is she real or a ghost again? Am I hallucinating? – but not a single sound leaves her mouth. All she does is stare at her. At Tori.
Tori smiles amusedly, her eyebrows raised and Jade finally snaps out of it. Releasing a quiet breath, Jade blinks and straightens up. "Tori. You're here." A quiet laugh tumbles out of Tori's mouth, Jade frowning at herself. How original, Jade. You're such a moron. "Why didn't you tell me you were coming here? I thought you were still-"
She abruptly stops, her mouth snapping shut and eyes narrowing a little. Tori shoots her a questioning look but her words die in her throat when Jade's hand hesitantly reaches out to her. Tori watches as it hovers in the air for a few seconds before it slowly sinks down and wraps itself around her arm. Jade gently squeezes and Tori lifts her eyes from the hand on her arm to Jade's face, a small smile on her face as she sees the concentrated look the pale girl was sporting. Jade suddenly begins to laugh, her hand keeping its hold on the other girl but her eyes lifting to look into Tori's. "Thank God. For a moment I thought I was hallucinating or… that you… that you're still…"
Tori shakes her head, smiling. "I'm not."
"You're not." Jade smiles widely and slowly pulls Tori closer to her. Looking at Tori's smiling face one more time, Jade pulls her in for a hug, brunette hair tickling her face. The distinct smell of strawberries and vanilla slowly creeps up Jade's nose and she doesn't think she ever smelled something so wonderful. Seeing her, talking to her, touching her. In that moment it seems that that's Jade all ever wanted to do. "So I finally get my hug," Jade hears Tori mumble quietly and lets out a chuckle before pulling away. She frowns however when she registers Tori limping as she took a step back.
"Um, so is your leg alright?"
Tori's sigh brings Jade's attention back to her face. "It is, for the most part at least." She smiles and shrugs her shoulders. "I still have a stupid limp but if I keep going to physical therapy, it will go away eventually."
Jade nods, crosses her arms and leans against Robbie's locker. "That's good. But why are you here? I mean, don't get me wrong, I'm happy that you are but… I thought you had to stay at that center thing for at least another two weeks?"
"Well yeah, that was the plan but… I managed to convince my parents to… take me home sooner. Today's my first day here and…" Tori bites her lip and hesitates for a second before smiling shyly and lifting one shoulder in a small shrug. "I wanted to see you again."
Again, Jade's lips twitch up in a smile. "I wanted to see you too."
"Yo, wicked witch!"
Andre's voice interrupts their little moment and Tori moves to stand next to Jade, both girls watching the dark-skinned boy approach. He comes to a halt in front of them, his head tilting and curious eyes flicking from Tori to Jade. "Are you coming to lunch?"
"Oh. Oh yeah, sure." Jade nods and shoots Andre a smile before turning to Tori. "You coming with us, I hope?"
"Of course. I mean, only if it's okay for Andre?" She turns to look at Jade's friend with a smile and raised eyebrows.
"Oh… no, I don't mind…" He frowns, his eyes flicking all over Tori's face. "Um sorry, I don't think we've met. How do you know my name?"
Tori's mouth fell open slightly when she realizes that, even though she knows him, Andre has no idea who she is. Her mind comes up with nothing and she ends up looking at him stupidly until Jade steps in and saves her. "I told her about you," Jade smoothly tells her friend and steps closer to Tori, her hands finding a place on the brunette's forearms. "Andre, this is Tori, a friend. It's her first day here."
Andre slowly nods, a smile masking his suspiciousness. "Okay. Welcome to Hollywood Arts then."
"Yeah, okay, whatever now," Jade speaks up and lets out an impatient sigh, "Let's go now, I'm starving."
Andre and Jade begin to make their way to the Asphalt Café but Jade gets stopped by Tori, who quickly hooks her arm through Jade's. She stops abruptly, her brows creased and eyes looking down at Tori's arm. "What are you doing?"
"I need a little support," Tori innocently tells her and confusedly blinks at the pale girl.
Jade frowns a little but makes no move to get out of Tori's hold. "You know, I have a reputation to uphold."
Tori just laughs. "Oh yeah? And what kind of reputation is that?"
"Being the mean witch who's untouchable."
"Well," Tori smiles and tightens her arm around Jade's, "We'll just have to change that."
Jade just smiles and walks with Tori on her arm to the Asphalt Café, ignoring the confused looks they get as they pass the students of Hollywood Arts. With a hard glare thrown their way, they knew to mind their own business. "So, be cool," Jade murmurs quietly as they approach the gang's usual table, "Remember, you don't know them. Don't let anything slip. I don't want my friends to think you're some kind of weirdo."
Tori gives her arm a slight squeeze, smiling at Jade. "I won't. I'll see it as my first acting challenge."
"-and Mr. Purple almost fell out of the car window but I could save him just in time." Cat pushes out a long, relieved breath. "He could have died, you know?"
Beck and Robbie only nod their heads, not even seeming to have listened to a word Cat had said. Their attention switches from their lunch however, when Andre, Jade and Tori sit down at the table. "This is Tori," Jade simply says before she completely focuses on her sandwich and ignores the surprised looks Tori and her get from her friends. Tori smiles nervously as three pairs of eyes curiously stare at her.
"Hey Tori!" Cat is the first one to speak up, a bright smile on her face as she waves at Tori. "I'm Cat! Just like the animal."
"Oh, yeah. That's great. I like cats."
"What's that supposed to mean?!"
Tori's eyes widen as she takes in Cat's offended expression. "Nothing! Nothing, I was just-"
"She was just being nice, Cat," Jade mumbles around her full mouth and rolls her eyes, "Chill out."
"Oh." Cat furrows her eyebrows before a big smile lights up her face again. "Okay! Thanks, Tori."
Tori just smiles and nods her head at her, deciding it was safer if she didn't say anything else to the redhead. "Well, this is Robbie," Cat says and motions to the curly haired boy next to her, who shoots her a smile and a wave. "And this is Beck." The handsome boy runs a hand through his hair and smiles. Cat turns back to Tori. "How do you know Jade, Tori?"
"Oh. Well, um…" Tori trails off, raising her eyebrows while turning to Jade. The pale girl swallows her food before clearing her throat. "Is it so strange that I have friends you guys don't know of?" Jade narrows her eyes and looks around the table. "I don't have to give account to any of you. Tori is a friend. That's all you have to know."
"Well hopefully your new friend can do something about your sour mood," Beck mumbles into his hand, the glare he receives from his ex-girlfriend not really bothering him that much.
"Anyways, Tori," Cat pipes up with a giggle, "My brother almost ate a sock once."
"Jade! It's so good to see you again!"
"Yeah, you too, Mrs. Vega." Jade finds herself returning the smile Holly shoots her, who gets up from her seat at the kitchen table and walks over to where her daughter and Jade just came through the door.
"Jade drove me home. She can stay for a while, right?"
Mrs. Vega waves dismissively. "Oh, yeah of course. Make yourself at home, Jade."
Jade only manages a smile before she feels herself being dragged away from Tori's mom and up the stairs. For someone who's supposedly still a little weakened, Jade thinks, Tori's strength is remarkable. But before they reach Tori's room, they're stopped by a door opening and Trina stepping out. The older Vega's eyebrows shoot up in surprise before she stands up straight, crosses her arms and looks at her sister's friend. "Jade."
Jade gets the urge to roll her eyes at Trina's attitude but instead of doing so, she curtly nods at Tori's sister, adopting the same unimpressed expression Trina was sporting. "Trina."
"Didn't expect to see you here. Hope you're well?"
"Well, now that you are standing in front of me, how could I not be?"
Trina snorts and smirks amusedly. "Oh yeah, sure. Better save that for Tori."
Tori, who just watched the exchange between her sister and Jade curiously, slightly shakes her head and starts pulling at Jade's arm again. "So, we'll be in my room." Tori's hand is just about to push down the handle before Trina's voice catches their attention again.
"Oh, okay. But you know, please do tell…" She trails off and waits for Jade and Tori to turn around again before continuing with a smirk and a wiggle of her eyebrows. "Do I need ear plugs?"
Tori and Jade respectively release a horrified gasp and an amused laugh before disappearing into Tori's room. Right after pushing Jade into her room and slamming the door shut behind her, Tori's hands shoot up to shield her red face from the other girl. "I can't believe she said that," Tori mumbles into her palms to which Jade only let out another laugh.
"Embarrassed, are we?" With a smirk, Jade saunters over to the blushing brunette and closes her fingers around Tori's wrists, lowering her hands from her burning face. Smirking, Jade shakes her head. "You are so weird."
Jade laughs, lets go of Tori's wrists and turns around. "Whatever you say, Tori." Her eyes travel around Tori's room, taking in every little detail. "So that's your room. I didn't expect anything different, to be honest."
"I really missed you."
Jade freezes, her smile slightly dropping. She raises her eyebrows and turns around to face Tori, who has her hands clasped in front of her and her lip captured between her teeth. There's a slight tint of red on her cheeks and Jade can't really tell if it's still from Trina's comment or from something different. Pushing out a breath, Jade lightly rolls her eyes. "I did too. Kinda."
"Yeah, well…" Tori smiles as Jade shrugs her shoulders and crosses her arms, averting her eyes. The youngest Vega walks closer, her hands gently coming to rest on Jade's crossed forearms. Jade's eyes flick from Tori's bed to warm brown eyes, warmth running through her entire body by just the slight touch of Tori's hands. She doesn't even register what is happening until Tori's mouth is mere inches away from her own and much to Tori's – and a little to her own – surprise, Jade moves her head back. "What are you doing?" Jade murmurs calmly, a small smile tugging at her lips when she sees Tori's confused expression.
"Um… I thought it was pretty clear that… I wanted to kiss you."
"I'm not an easy girl, you know," Jade teases and moves away completely, Tori's hands falling away, "You didn't even take me out on a date yet."
Tori's eyebrows shoot up, her head tilting in disbelief. "Are you serious?"
"Why wouldn't I be?"
Tori's lips part but when she sees Jade's smirk and the twinkle in her eyes, a smile appears on her face. "So you want me to take you on a date?" Tori takes in Jade's confirming nod before stepping closer again and placing her hands back on Jade's arms. "Can't I at least get a little motivation?"
"You have enough motivation."
"Then… how about a 'welcome back to life' kiss? You wouldn't be easy. It's just the right thing to do."
Jade's smirk widens and her eyebrow rises. "Oh, is it?"
Jade nods and uncrosses her arms, moving her right hand to Tori's waist while her left one cups her cheek. Tori smiles as she feels Jade's breath against her lips. "Then I guess it's okay," Jade whispers before letting their lips collide.
A/N: The last chapter was supposed to be the ending to the story. I had it planned like this from day one but then I thought people would get mad at me if I just left them hanging like that so... I did another one. But really, feel free to take the last chapter as the ending. This chapter was just a little insight of what would happen between them now.
So the end it is. Thanks for reading and reviewing!