Chapter 6: Dressed To Digress

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic

Reads: 68
Comments: 1

Chapter Six

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Dressed to Digress

Lucy woke up feeling much better than she had before. The sick feeling was gone and there was only one of everything again. Alexander had moved away from her. His body diagonally spread across his bed with his big feet intertwined with hers. She couldn't stop her stomach leap when saw that they were tangled together. Alexander was making her feel...funny.

She slid her feet away softly hoping not to wake him but she failed.

He let out a long lazy groan and stretched out in the same manner as he had before. Lucy felt the need to hide her appearance from him. She had never felt embarrassed by the way she looked until now, She suddenly wanted to wear make-up and She definitely wanted to shower.

She was appalled by the acrid taste in her mouth. How he could stand to look at her she didn't understand. His blonde hair was messed up over his face. With one of his large hands he swept it backwards and combed it through with his fingers. He didn't seem to be nervous or paranoid about Lucy being there at all. Not the way she was. He sat up slowly and he rubbed his hands over his puffy pale face.

What time is it?” He asked as he looked to his wrist and then sighed as he realised he wasn't wearing a watch. Lucy who had pulled the covers almost up over head head shrugged innocently. He shot her a look that asked, what are you doing? But he put It down to the fact she was a girl and he'd met every species of girl that had ever existed. Luckily, Lucy was among the most normal.

Your mums not going to be happy with me” He let out a small laugh and a cheeky wink.

He looked for any sign that she had spoken about him to anyone, or even thought about him. He wanted to know so badly what was going on behind her big brown eyes. No-one but her could know and she didn't look anywhere near ready to tell him as she cocooned herself in his bed sheets. It was a look he had always admired in a girl. He smiled to himself.

She's not been sober for the best part of ten years, I don't think she's going to care about you” blurted Lucy to her dismay. She hated it when people looked at her with the pity that Alexander had allow to creep into his eyes. She didn't need her mother. She didn't need anyone. She had been doing fine without them all, hadn't she?

Don't give me that look” She said defensively and propped herself up on the bed.

Alexander was sitting with his back to her, leaning forward now she could make out the muscles in his back. How tightly his shirt clung to him. She let her mind wander for a second and then let it snap back into focus with his reply.

I'm not.” He said quietly. He was acting different now. He swung his head slowly around to look at her, just allowing himself a glimpse and then he turned back around.

What's the deal with your mum then?” He asked in such an aloof manner than it took her by surprise. She didn't think that anyone had ever asked her than before. Ever.

And she had never willingly offered up the information.

She's a whole lot of crazy” said Lucy. Alexander couldn’t help but let a fleeting smile cross his face, it's the sort of answer he'd expect to hear from himself. The whole defensive thing covered with humour, he had that down.

She sat still as he turned his body round on the bed. Now that he was facing her she felt exposed. She clawed the duvet up and wrapped it in closer to her body. He didn't move much, if at all. It nearly looked as though he wasn't breathing at all. Must be a Recruitment thing, thought Lucy. She ran her hands over her hair smoothing out the mocha messy waves into something she thought would be better looking.

What's wrong with her?” He asked again with a blasé attitude.

What's right with her.” Lucy asked rhetorically. Alexander smiled faintly.

I had a brother.” It was the first time she had said that to anyone outside the family.

It felt good. Like something had been lifted off of her. She couldn't help but sigh with relief.

You're mum couldn't cope?” Alexander asked attentively.

Neither of them could.” Lucy admitted.

Alexander was giving her the look again.

Pity, Empathy, Grief, Sadness and Heartbreak all rolled into one look.

He really had a skill for looking, she thought.

It's OK” She continued. Trying not to let his blue eyes affect her in a way that would make her feel the sadness he was projecting.

I'm fine”

Alexander reached over and pressed his hand against her thigh that was wrapped heavily in duvet. It was the gesture that meant more than she could imagine. She felt like everything inside her was bruised. Every cell of her body was damaged. Somehow, he made that feeling fade.

How did your brother pass?” He asked. Lucy noted the way he said pass as though it was any less final than saying die.

I don't really remember much about him, I remember the stupid things. Like how he would wake me up from coughing, or how he seemed so happy even though he was so sick.” Lucy’s voice broke up a little and Alexander paused. Unsure whether to hug her or cry with her.

She affected him more than he thought could be possible. He had such empathy for her it was though he had lived through it himself.

Lymphoma” She said gravely. He didn't move any closer to her but he didn't take his hand from her thigh and she was glad he didn’t.

I'm sorry Luce” He said painfully.

It's fine, really....” She smiled sincerely, “After Jack died my mum and dad just fought constantly. For years. They ruined each other but neither of them would leave...” She paused and looked off distantly.

Sucks.” He commented after a pause, he didn’t have a clue what to say to her.

Anyway, in answer to your question... I don’t know what her deal is. Brains fried with alcohol is my guess.” She replied.

An awkward silence fell between them, neither saying a word. What could they say?

Finally Lucy plucked up the courage to speak again, asking Alexander to shed some light on his family.

My family are perfect” He laughed confidently. It made the warmth return to her bones.

Oh mine 2” Lucy rolled her eyes and smiled feebly.

Yeah, but I’m serious” Alexander nodded, “I am a miracle baby”

Miracle?” Lucy squinted her eyes scrutinisation

Alexander thought this made her look cuter than ever before.

Well, perhaps miracle is over selling myself.” he laughed gallasly.

Perhaps...” agreed Lucy boldly.

My parents were told they couldn't have children but, here I am. Completely spoiled because of it”

I can tell” mocked Lucy as she let the duvet drop slightly.

Can you?” teased Alexander. The confidence Alexander displayed regularly could only come from an extremely loving and supportive family. He was raised well.

If his parents were here Lucy might have considered congratulating them.

Well now that we know that at-least one of us got piano lessons, can we get breakfast?”

Piano lessons?” Lucy asked unsure if this was the truth. He didn't seem to be that type but then again he didn’t seem to be half the things he was so she would keep an open mind around him.

Don't forget the drums, I’m pretty excellent on the triangle, not to mention the violin.” He chuckled but he looked magnificent. He looked like a movie star sitting on the edge of the bed. It was intimidating.

She rolled her eyes because she genuinely didn’t want to seem as impressed as she was. Trying to conceal her new found admiration of Alexander she followed him out the bedroom and into the kitchen.

Do not tell me you cook!” Laughed Lucy.

Oh and I cook. I am your perfect man really, lets be honest here...” He said,

Blonde, check. Blue eyes, check. Musically talented, check, part time superhero, full time super model, world class chef, check check che-yeck!” He flashed a smile that looked like the sun shone from within him.

He was right, she'd never admit it to him, but he was painstakingly right and as damn near perfect as she'd ever witnessed. She kicked herself, metaphorically in-case Alexander thought she was a self harmer as well as a bad drunk, for passing him by in the first place.

Come on, eat. Food. Starving!” He groaned with a friendly smile and pulled her up off the bed and dragged her behind him as he made his way to the kitchen.

On the way she noticed the photos again. She wanted to ask about them, about Michael but she thought it would be overstepping some sort of line. If there even was a line, of which she wasn’t sure. But in some way, it felt like asking Alexander about Michael was wrong. The last time she had approached the subject, he hadn't been rude or anything like that, he was just a bit...weird and distant. She had noticed that they don't talk. Alexander wont acknowledge Michael. But why?

Alexander’s hand was firm as it held hers. She watched him as he smiled while he cooked. She listened when he told her about him. Nothing about him was vague or mysterious. He was like an open book. It was refreshing, Lucy hadn't met many people in her whole life, and none were like him. Everyone seemed to have an agenda or a motive. Alexander seemed relatively simple. Maybe that was his catch.

She ate the eggs and bacon slowly in fear of her bringing it back up. But it seemed to settle in her stomach and she was glad of the meal. He ate his much faster, like he had never eaten before. He had almost double of what she had and he spoke the whole time he ate. It was cute. She couldn’t stop herself from smiling.

By the time he was ready to take her home the muscles in her face were aching. He led her down to the car park through recruitment building. It was ultra modern, black and silver and glass. Everything looked spotlessly clean. Daniel had been right, there were pictures of Alexander hanging up. Several of the Dunhill father and son. And a few of officers Lucy didn’t recognise. She blushed when she saw the pictures of Alexander and realised that there was a lot of pairs of eyes staring at her as she scurried behind him. He was like a celebrity. It make her feel ridiculous as she remembered she was wearing his t shirt over Ashley's dress and she was carrying her shoes. She let out a sigh of relief when she finally closed the car door behind her. Alexander didn’t seem to notice, but he was much smarter than that, Lucy put it down to the fact that he did notice but that it had become so familiar to him that it wasn’t anything special, like it was to her. He started the engine.

Aren't you going to explain why people were looking at you like you were the messiah?” She asked him as he pulled out of the reserved space of A. Rose and drove out of the car park

He shook his head and smiled mischievously at her.

His blonde hair fell down into his face and she wanted to move it out of his eyes but again the crossing the line argument won and she didn’t move.

Alexander”

Lucy” he said making wide mocking eyes at her.

What can I say?” He said “I'm good at my job”

Good at your job?, thought Lucy. He must be the best damn soldier this worlds ever seen. On the drive home Alexander told her about his father. He had come through Recruitment ranks and had made it up the ladder considerably before Alexander has been born. Alexander said that his father was so proud of him. That he had cried when he was born because he had tried for nearly 10 years to have children without success. Alexander said that with his first bonus as captain he bought a house for his parents by a river that they now lived in.

A house? Lucy thought, a house. He bought a house with his bonus. Everything he said not only amazed her but impressed her considerably. More and more, as he drove her home, she wanted to reach over and touch his soft milky skin. She had no idea how much he wanted that too.

Before she knew it he was outside Daniels house and parking the car. Straight away the curtains were twitching with Daniel waiting in the wings to unleash his fury.

Never-mind the lecture she would get from Celia and the silence from Robert.

Great.

Alexander..em..tha”

You're welcome.” He smiled warmly and then pointed at the window,

I think someone is waiting on you”

She nodded and let out a fearful moan.

She let her eyes linger on his for a few seconds and then she hopped out quickly and began the journey up the path, and in the front door.

She didn't wave him goodbye.

He didn’t expect she would, he drove off almost immediately.

He knew she wasn't the only one in trouble.

Daniel had made himself scarce by the time Lucy got inside. He didn't want to talk about where she had been or why she had been there. He didn't want to talk about it at all. She wanted to tell him things to make him understand but something told her that he never really would see things from her point of view so she decided to let it be. If Daniel wanted to talk, he knew where she was, if not then that was fine.

Lucy was glad to get out of Ashley’s tight dress and slip into the shower. She needed some time to herself that she always found in here. She washed the smell of Alexander out of her hair and off of her skin but she couldn't wash him from her mind. He was pretty much a permanent fixture there now.

After all the effort it took to wash the sweet smell of him of off her, she put his t-shirt back on after the shower. She couldn't help herself. She wore it as she dried her long hair, brushing out the knots and singing to herself quietly. She would have to tell Ashley about him, wouldn't she? Maybe she shouldn’t tell Ashley anything any-more. It seemed that Ashley was as backstabbing as people had said she was. Did she want Michael? Did she want Thomas or Alexander? What did she want? Lucy didn't trust Ashley any-more. She was seeing things in Ashley’s that she had missed before and now that she could see these awful traits, how could she overlook them? She would have to figure out a way to get over it because Ashley was her only friend. She had no-one else. Daniel wouldn't count as a friend now, he had distanced himself from Lucy and she couldn’t understand why? What was so bad about her now? She hadn’t changed that much.

Daniel would certainly disagree and in the days leading up-to Christmas he pretended like the party hadn't happened. Like he hadn't met anyone there and that things were back to before. Lucy went along with his game for the sake of an easy life but she wouldn’t forget anything about that night, apart from the parts where she had blacked out. But that was normal? wasn’t that normal?

On Christmas Eve, Ashley turned up like a whirlwind to drag Lucy shopping. Something that Lucy regretted straight away. The shops were too busy, too warm and too loud. Ashley was definitely probing her for information. But Lucy hadn't worked it out in her head yet. How could she reflect on anything that had happened or how she felt. How could anyone weigh up the pros and cons of Michael and Alexander? Both were as good as each other just in different ways.

Ashley was asking stupid questions all day;

Do you love Alexander? Are you drunk right now? Have you seen Michael? What did Daniel say about me? What are you doing tomorrow night? How did you get home? Did you enjoy the party? Didn't Alexander look hot?” and many many more...

No. No. No. Nothing. Nothing. Alexander. Yes.... Yes...

Lucy answered truthfully in her head but found herself lying on the outside. She wasn't saying anything true any-more. She didn't tell her about the fight with Daniel or the Night with Alexander and certainly not about the half kiss thing that happened with Michael. She still had no idea what had happened. Ashley seemed less than impressed with Lucy’s answers. She flipped her blonde hair over her shoulder and rolled her big Bambi eyes and complained about Thomas doing this and Thomas saying that with the occasional groan that Michael never called her.

Why would he call you? Lucy wanted to snap. She wanted to know once and for all why Ashley thought she had any claim over Michael. It was starting to drive her crazy now.

Lucy was glad when Ashley finally dropped her off home and sped off down the street.

Finally a minute of silence.

The door opened. It was Daniel.

This came for you” He said firmly as he kicked a white box across the porch at her. It hit her on the side, not hard but still, there was no need for it.

She would have said thanks had Daniel not shut the door immediately after the kick.

She shook her head and then turned her attentions to the box. It was tied in a cream ribbon. There was no card on the outside.

She opened it quickly. She hated surprises.

On top of white tissue paper there was a folded white card.

Don't get sick on this one

-AR”

Lucy couldn’t stop her face springing into a cheesy grin. The embarrassment she felt was tiny compared to how happy this card made her and she didn't even know what was in the box. She unravelled the tissue paper as it crackled in her hands. She saw the fabric, it was black lace. The embarrassment was rising up again. She pulled it out to reveal a small black lace dress with red gems round the bust. It was beautiful and it looked expensive. She tried to find a price tag but it had been removed. He knew she's make him take it back if she saw how much it had cost. She dropped it back into the box, closed the lid over and ran inside. She threw the box on the bed and got undressed quickly. She slid her body into the dress and zipped it up at the back. It was perfect. It felt tailor made. Especially for her. She loved it. She loved that dress like she had never loved an inanimate object before. She had heard Ashley say she loved her car and her purse and her shoes but Lucy never understood until now, how much material things could mean. How happy they could make you. She looked like a young woman in this dress. She looked grown up.

She took it off and folded it back into the box carefully as if it were made from strands of pure gold.

Then she pushed the box underneath the bed where it would stay until the morning when she would slide back into the lace, feeling like a million dollars and begin her Christmas day.

Daniel only had a few days left at home, barely a week. Celia fussed over him like he was an injured puppy. Taking care of him as though he were 5 years old again, except it wasn't him that needed her help. It was Lucy-Anna. Daniel feared that she had lost her way. Maybe selfishly he had feared for himself and his own loss. He seemed to have lost her. He never imagined that he would leave and she would be the one to change. Maybe she was right, she couldn’t sit about and wait for him to come home. For all he knew, he might never come home. Daniel took small sips of the orange juice that he had poured into a small glass. He had sat there for so long he was surprised it hadn't turned sour.

He thought about whether he was doing the right thing. Was ignoring her for the best? No, of course it wasn't. He knew that but he couldn’t bring himself to ask her where she had been. He couldn’t hear her say it. He just didn’t want to.

Daniel knew nothing about Morozov. He had barely noticed him around but he had noticed that there was something there in his eyes for Lucy. He had seen that look before. He had to go on gut instinct with Michael since he hadn't much information but he was scared for Lucy-Anna. She was too young for this, for them. He would have to protect her like a brother should. That's his main job, protecting Lucy-Anna. When it came to Alexander, he didn't want to know what had happened when Lucy-Anna hadn’t returned home but given Alexander's reputation he could give it a good guess. Daniel had no idea how wrong he was. He wouldn’t let Captain Rose ruin his sister. No way.

Celia breezed in the kitchen to see her son deep in thought. He was a sight she missed around the home and she game him a welcoming smile as he drew her a funny look.

“You alright son?” She asks quietly and puts one of her small hands on his shoulder.

Her hands look childlike against Daniel now, she could still remember the days when he fit inside both of her arms. It felt like yesterday.

“Yeah,” He replied sullenly, “I’m just thinking”

About what?” Celia asks in the same way as before. Quiet and kind.

Lucy-Anna”

What's wrong with her?” Celia enquired.

You need to help her” Daniel blurted out before he could stop himself.

Help her with what?” Celia replied suddenly worried that something had happened that she didn't fully understand.

She been going out a lot?”

Well,” Celia thought back, Lucy-Anna had been going out a lot. Celia was pleased she finally had friends to help her integrate and find her way in the world, especially now that Daniel wasn't here.

She been seeing they boys a lot?” Asked Daniel impatiently.

No” replied Celia, “Not that I have noticed” She added as she took the seat across the table from her son.

Her blonde hair fell in waves down over he shoulders and her eyes were inviting and mothering. She smoothed out her grey pencil skirt with her tiny hands and then crossed them over one another.

You have to help her” Daniel said again this time with a little more urgency.

I don't know how, what is wrong with her?” Celia asked with the feeling that Daniel wasn't fully explaining a story to her. Like she had walked in halfway through a film.

Lucy had just open the door to her bedroom when she heard their voices and her name. She froze silent listening to the conversation. It was muffled and the sound of her breathing was making listening a task.

They boys are no good for her Mum. She is too young”

Had Lucy heard that right? Daniel was telling Celia about Alexander.

He had the complete wrong idea.

Why don’t you try and speak to her then?” asked Celia

I'm not here enough to make a difference to her.” Daniel hung his head and for the first time he really regretted his decision to leave. If he had known Lucy-Anna would get tangled up in this he would maybe have stayed.

Daniel... son...” Celia said slowly.

She leaned forward slightly to get a better look at Daniel. He looked weary.

Have you maybe over-reacted?” said Celia suggestively. “Maybe you aren't happy with her growing up? Not needing you as much?”

Lucy’s heart swelled when she heard this, was Daniel missing her that much? Was he that scared to lose her? Maybe he was doing all of this because he was scared that she wouldn’t need him any-more but that wasn’t true. She wanted to burst in and tell him that she would always need him. She would always want him with her, he was her brother. Blood or not, it didn’t make a blind bit of difference. He was her brother and she loved him more than she even knew was possible. A kind of love that she didn’t imagine existed until he left. That’s when Lucy realised that she loved Daniel more than she could bear.

That's not it Mum”

Lucy’s heart dropped out her chest. No one could ruin a moment like Daniel, if it wasn’t because he loved her then why was he making such a big deal of this? It was only a boy? Well two boys, but it shouldn’t matter to Daniel.

Daniel, think about it.” She added. She was sure this was an issue of his own doing. He had to let Cyanamid grow up just the same way that she watched him leave. She had to move on and she has.

Honestly,” Daniel said adamant that he was right, “She's changed.”

Yes, for the better” Celia said as she rose to her feet “Just like you have”

Daniel didn't argue back this time. Instead he knew that it was down to him. If Lucy-Anna wasn’t going to take his advice and she was going to continue seeing Michael or/and Alexander, he wanted to have her where he could see her. Protect her. He would have to manipulate her, not selfishly, Daniel didn't agree that this was because of him or in his head. He would have to try to get her to leave with him, come to Recruitment? Was that even possible? Could he do it? He would try.

Lucy closed her bedroom door and walked into the kitchen wearing Alexander's dress. She saw Celia preparing vegetable at the work surface and Daniel drinking orange juice at the table. He smiled at her like nothing was wrong. She didn’t tell him she knew what he had said. What would be the point in that?

Everyone conspires in this town apparently. Is no-one real? Does no-one care? Lucy wasn’t sure who she could trust any-more. Daniel was speaking about her like she had got a tattoo and developed a back alley drug addiction. There were worse things she could do.

Dinner will be ready in a few hours love” Celia said as she chopped through a carrot. Everything she done seemed to be graceful and womanly. Even chores and cooking, Celia looked like a step ford wife.

Great” replied Lucy trying to sound as upbeat as possible.

Celia turned her head round to glance at Lucy. She had to double take, she had never seen Lucy-Anna looking this much like a young woman in her entire like Her brown hair was curled into ringlet and fell halfway down her back. Her skin glowed and her green eyes were sparkling.

That dress!” Celia exclaimed and dropped both the carrot and the knife.

Where did you get that!” Asked Celia.

Yeah, where?” Asked Daniel in a shady, douche way. He rolled his eyes as he spoke.

It was a gift”

A gift?” Celia examined the dress,

What kind of person gives you a two thousand dollar dress?”

How much!” Lucy nearly jumped out of the dress right there. There was no way she could accept a dress that cost that much. It cost more than everything she owned.

Oh at least, Lucy-Anna, it's a Trafford-Cashir dress.”

A who dress?” when Lucy asked this Celia rolled her eyes just like Daniel had. Lucy shrugged her shoulders.

Let me see the label.”

Oh I already checked for the price, it's not on it.”

Oh I know that” Celia laughed as though she had said the most ridiculous thing in the world. She had her hands down the back of the lace dress pulling about for a label.

Oh...” Replied Lucy unsure of what exactly was going on here.

Got it.” exclaimed Celia. Her tiny hands had fished out the label.

T-C-T Lucy-Anna!” she laughed, “It's T-C-T”

What?” Asked Lucy as she pulled away from Celia pulling the dress back down.

Trafford-Cashir Tailored.” Celia nodded, her little beady eyes were filled with excitement. Her hands were flapping around and she laughed like a little girl. Daniel was missing the fun while he sat in the corner with his orange juice and remained thoroughly embarrassed by his mother and at the same time, sick of this dress. He for one, didn't like it.

When Lucy didn’t reply Celia put her hands on her little hips and shook her head.

Lucy-Anna, This is tailor made. One of a kind. Made specifically for you... Who gave you this?” She asked.

Ale- A boy I met” She replied as she realised just how expensive the dress was. How did he manage to get her a custom made dress?

Oh, well, you be nice to him. Ask him if he wants an older woman!” Laughed Celia. Her cheeks went red as Robert stepped into the kitchen. His beard was unshaven for a few days now and he was carrying around a good bit of stubble. His grey shirt was un buttoned at the top and he was fidgeting with the buttons on the cuffs as he kissed Celia on the lips softly.

Who wants an older woman?” He smiled.

Lucy-Anna's new millionaire boyfriend” Celia blurted out in hilarity.

Oh my god, he Is not a millionaire” Lucy replied quickly.

But he is your boyfriend?” said Robert and gave Celia a comical wink.

Uh!” Groaned Daniel, “I'm getting out of here.” He said as he tried to escape the kitchen table.

No!” Lucy exclaimed, “He's not my anything!” She was utterly embarrassed

I'm going too!” Lucy replied.

You two, Both of you, are going in there to set the table!” Celia demanded and handed Lucy-Anna a pile of table mats and a table cloth.

On you go. Careful with that dress!” She called after Lucy and then both she and Robert laughed along with each other.

Oh aren’t they hilarious, thought Lucy. She would have to give this dress back. After today, of course, it felt too good on not to wear it just once.

Daniel hardly spoke through dinner. If he did speak to her it was a yes or no answer, sometimes a grunt depending on the question. Lucy couldn’t take much more of this. She hadn't done anything to Daniel for him to act like this towards her. She smiled her way through dinner until she felt herself drifting away into day dreams and far away thoughts. About life, love, being happy. About everything.

Daniel noticed a few times her distance. While Celia and Robert settled down to watch a movie he followed Lucy into her bedroom. He had spent all day ignoring her, thinking of a way to get her to change back.

What do you want Daniel?” She said unhappily as he closed the door.

I've been thinking all day Lucy-Anna.” he replied

So have it.” She interrupted.

Well,” He said as he sat on the bed, “I am being too hard on you.” He said.

Really?” She was surprised Daniel was backing down. It wasn’t something he usually did. Or ever did for that matter. He didn’t say sorry for anything. He never had.

yes” said Daniel. Even though he didn’t agree with what he was saying, he wasn’t being too hard on her at all. He had to make her believe he was sorry to make sure she believed him and what he was going to propose to her. One day she would see that this was for her own good.

It's OK Daniel, maybe you’re right I shouldn’t be caught up as I am in these people. They aren’t my family. Your right and you know Alexander he said to me tha-”

I've been thinking” Daniel interrupted. He hadn’t changed his mind about not wanting to hear about what Alexander said or how sparkly Michaels eyes were. He didn’t care about that.

I’ve missed you so much since I've been gone”

I missed you too” Lucy replied honestly

Right and that’s why I think that maybe, at your birthday, come with me?”

what? To recruitment? Me?”

Yes” Daniel said, this was his big idea. Get her to come with him. He could watch her if she lived with her, he could keep her safe from harm indefinitely. She would be protected with him there.

No” She replied finally.

Why” Daniel tried not to sound so impatient and offended as he did.

I’m not cut out for that, military, army, recruitment, call it what you want. It's not me.”

it is Luce, you just, you cant see it yet. But it would be great to have you around” He felt guilty for saying this, not that it was a lie, not that it wouldn’t be great but it wasn’t exactly for the same reason that he was implying it was.

Do you think?” she asked faithfully.

Yes” nodded Daniel. “of course!” He sounded excited and he even rose to his feet like he were too happy to sit down. He walked over to he door.. Lucy was thinking that she had been right his morning when she had over heard him talk to Celia He was just missing her. He just wanted to be with his sister the way she wanted to have her big brother around. But recruitment? Could she really see herself doing something like that for life? It wasn't like she would ever get another change to pledge. It was all or nothing and it was in a matter of months, weeks even! She gave a thought to Ashley. She wondered if she had decided yet where she would pledge. Maybe Ashley needed someone to talk to about it? Lucy hadn't been that great a friend lately, maybe she should phone her to make sure everything was going OK. Or maybe to make sure she wasn't going to pledge Recruitment...

I will think about it Daniel” she said trying not to sound to non-committal

OK, I hope you do” He said as he closed the door behind him.

Lucy knew that there would be no way she could sneak out the front door. She wouldn't even risk it. She wanted to get out so bad. Sitting in all day with this dress on and having no Alexander here to thank, it made her feel uneasy. She knew that as soon as she seen him she would feel better but also that if she didn't see him her blood would not settle. With Robert and Celia down for the night she paced her room for a while debating whether or not she could sneak out Daniels window without him waking up. Her heart was racing at the thought. She had never felt this awake. Alive. It was what she imagined drugs were like, except without the bad parts. Her heart was suspended as she heard Daniels doors click. He was awake? He couldn't be. She tiptoed as quiet as a mouse to her door and pressed her ear against it. Hearing Daniel leave his room made her stomach fall 15 floors. She had a chance. She creeped out her door as quickly and as quietly as possible. She made a run for the window. Pulled it up and near enough jumped out. She took care to keep the dress safe, she couldn't say the same for her elbow as it landed heavily.

When she was out she pulled it down slowly and silently then she ran.

And she didn't stop.

She hadn't really thought this all the way through. She had got out but Recruitment was a long way away on foot. She was running the streets in a dress worth thousands of dollars and a pair of black fluffy slipper boots. The wind was freezing. It blew her back. It was a struggle at times to force her way through the weight of it. She hitched the dress up above her knees to try and protect it. She wouldn’t stop. All those years of running were paying off now. Not that she had ever enjoyed physical activities in school but her body seemed to cope well and she didn't feel pain for the first half hour. She reached the city centre strip and had to stop, her breath was strained. She felt her leg throb. She regretted not giving herself an extra minute to stretch before escaping from alcatraz. She would never be able to make it to Recruitment like this. Her lungs were burning like she was breathing acid. With the presence of people came the sudden embarrassment of the dress. The eyes were burning into her, jealous, envy, disbelief. She had seen it all tonight. She could barely stand. She really wasn't doing the dress justice. Why hadn't she just changed? Something about it, the way it felt, the way it looked. Glamorous, luxurious, rich, it made her want to wear it eternally. Like it was meant for her. And it was. That's the way Alexander had intended it to be.

“Lucy-Anna? Are you alright?”

Lucy hung her head in shame. Her brown hair blowing across her face. She let the dress drop down.

If she was embarrassed before she wanted to die now.

Michaels grey eyes looked her up and down in astonishment. He wasn't quite sure what to make of her.

I'm fine,” She said graciously, “I'm just, going for a walk” She added trying to get away with it.

Nice dress.” He pointed out as he smiled politely. Those white teeth that could rip her apart like those of a shark.

Where are you going?” He asked suspiciously and shrugged a grey duffel coat off and draped it round her shoulders. It was the sweetest darn thing she had ever seen. It was just like the films. It made her warm inside and out. Her cheeks blushed rosy red as she smiled.

Should she tell him where she was going? He would surely take her there? But then, There was bad blood with Alexander in the past and she didn't really understand why or how, perhaps explaining that she was sprinting to his arch enemy would be a bad idea in the long run?

To see Ashley.” It was the first thing that came into her head. His eyes revealed nothing about him. Did he believe her? She couldn’t tell. He was like marble, he was a stone figurine that gave away nothing. He looked at her in such a distinctive way, a way that made her feel like she was a stranger to him. His favourite stranger.

Do you need a ride?” He offered kindly but she shook her head before he had finished his question.

No thanks. I’m... nearly there” She was the worlds worst liar tonight. If she stood here with him any longer she would just tell him.

It's Alexander.

I'm going to him but I think that somewhere deep inside of me that I might actually maybe a little bit love you.

I don't really want to leave you here on your own...” said Michael.

Oh,” She waved her hand like it was nothing,

I'm a big girl. I can look after myself.”

He laughed lightly, soft crystallised air particles became visible as he exhaled.

I'll take your word for that but, you know, you are pretty small.”

pretty and small? Or pretty small?” Lucy nudged. Her voice becoming flirty and girly without any conscious input or effort.

Both.” said Michael directly.

He cleared his throat but he didn't seem to be embarrassed at all, “You OK then?”

yes” said Lucy reassuringly.

Without arguing Michael turned to leave a flustered Lucy-Anna be.

Your jacket?” She said sweeping it off her bare shoulders.

No,” He said as he wrapped it around her tightly once more, “You can borrow it” He smiled perfectly.

Part of Lucy wished she could wrap herself up in his arms and then the other part, the majority thought she was crazy. She had to get herself in check. She couldn't feel like weak around someone. She wouldn't let her need someone now. Especially not Michael. Mysterious Michael. He would be the last person she would let herself trust. If she had the choice, problem is, she didn't have a choice and everything she felt around Michael was intriguing She was curious as to why he made her feel like she could die if she didn't know his every thought. His silver eyes kept everything inside. He was like a prison and she was on death row.

She sighed contently and he rubbed his hands over her shoulders.


Submitted: January 30, 2012

© Copyright 2021 SisiMaclachlan. All rights reserved.

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TwoStepz

Hey, great chapter! I'm loving this! Message me when you update :)

Wed, February 8th, 2012 6:44pm

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