Pulling Her HEARTSTRINGS Episode 35
A story written by HAPPY
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Kissing Umbria… each time always felt like our first. Her soft lips against mine as our tongue darted in and out, and when she links her fingers behind my neck to run them through my hair or stroke my nape, I always feel like I’m in Utopia.
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I spent the whole night wanting to text Brya, or call her up and hear her voice. She always whispers on the phone when I call her at night. It makes her voice husky….a perfect turn on. Even though I’m exhausted talking to her always have a way of revitalizing me. She’s witty, funny, smart and beautiful. It’s not an in your face beauty, like the one girls like Jessi sports, but that subtle beauty that you keep noticing little by little until it becomes full blown one day and you just can’t take your eyes of her. Like I can’t. I’d pulled out my phone and went over all the photos I had of her, most taken unawares.
A text from The Boys group chat popped up.
STAN: Yo man, my face still hurts! Don’t know what to do about the bruise.😠
CHRIS: I think I broke a jugular. Damn, forgot how good and precise your punches are. Ow.
I laughed again.
OS: Okay, okay. What do I do about that?
The fight we had in our locker room earlier was short but intense and my knuckles hurt. It kept bugging my mind. So yeah I was a jerk to have told on Umbria but that didn’t mean they could loud mouth it out to her and make her cry.
I hate seeing her cry.
And lately I realize that most times I’m the prime cause.
STAN: Whatever you want. Next time give a guy a heads up. Even the odds, you’re highness.
VIC: Dumbass Stan. You guys were two. That should be Oscar’s line not yours.
We chatted for a while before I told them I had to log off and get sleep for ‘duties’ tomorrow.
Instead, I spent the night wondering about the cloak behind her eyes.
What’s she hiding?
This afternoon Edward and I were in courts with father and some men I had yet to get used to. Hell, I had yet to get used to so many things. Like not seeing Umbria as often as I’d like because I’d be stuck going over boring paperwork and meets. What do they call that…. not being able to stay without seeing someone, and having your thoughts filled by that very person? I didn’t want to examine that feeling too closely.
Just as father wrapped up the meeting which I didn’t get a word from, my phone buzzed with a notification.
I clicked on it.
And didn’t even wait to watch to the end before stomping off to my room, changing my garb, grabbing my keys, running my fingers through my hair, getting into my car and speeding off, ignoring the couple of guards that got in behind.
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“I love you,” I said to her.
And I did. Maybe I’ve always had, but didn’t want to see it. I did say I was scared of the L word as Stanley insisted on putting it, but they say you risk anything when you’re in love right?
A loud thud behind me was heard but I didn’t bother to turn, lost in watching the series of emotions playing across her eyes. Her lips were swollen from our long kiss, and it just made me want to take them again.
I stared up at him as he stroked my cheeks softly, with a small smile. The things I felt… I can’t even explain. This was more than I could have asked for. My love for Oscar being returned. He’d just overlooked the hugest flaw of mine, and even though I knew I’d have to tell him everything later, I’d kill for us to remain like this forever.
“That’s your cue,” he whispered, amused at my speechlessness.
I smiled through my tears.
“I love you too,” I whispered back.
“Say what, can’t hear you,” he teased.
Giggling, I said again, “I love you Oscar.”
“That’s better,” he said and captured my lips with his again. This time I didn’t hesitate to kiss him back with my all.
Cheers and claps and hoots and snaps of cameras greeted us when we broke apart again, and that’s when we caught sight of Miss Derby, our biology teacher by the door, hands linked as she grinned.
“So I was a little late and it’s a good thing right? That’s like the most romantic thing I’ve ever witnessed since I watched The Sleeping Beauty,” she gushed, making us laugh while I blushed. I like Miss Derby, she’s one of the coolest teacher’s apart from Miss Melody, our music teacher.
“Okay guys, Loni, James, help me raise Jessica to a sitting position let’s wake her. I don’t think it was a serious faint, just shock. Audrey bring a pack of ice from the refrigerator over there. No need taking her to the clinic when she’ll come to after a cold splash.”
While they fussed over Jessica Oscar took my hands and led me out.
“Oh my god they’re leaving,” Xena yelled pointing at us, drawing the attention of the others.
“Don’t go guys, we need your love story!”
“Just one selfie your highness….”
Oscar grabbed my hand tightly as we ran away from the lab over to the school’s garden.
“I think we lost them,” I said breathlessly. “That was some crazy —”
I didn’t get to complete my words as his lips found mine again in a deep kiss that ended with a peck on my forehead.
“I keep wondering what the hell I’ve been doing all these while not to notice this cute little rose spot on your cheeks.”
“They’re called blushes,” I replied. A pause in which we stared at each other as if we couldn’t believe that we’d come this far. It was also a pause in which I worked up the courage to tell him the story behind the video. My past. “Oscar….”
“Sshh. I know there’s a lot you want to tell me, even I want to know too. But don’t push yourself okay? Can do that some other time.”
I shook my head. “I want to let it all out now. Please. And please don’t hate me afterwards.”
His eyebrows lowered in a frown as he held my shoulders. “What did I say minutes ago?”
“That you love me.”
“And do you think whatever it is you want to tell me would change the way I feel for you? I’ll answer that, no. No way in hell.”
My heart swelled and I smiled. “Then let’s sit for this.”
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“I wasn’t exactly born into the wildlife. My father was the best dad in the world. When I was little he’d taught me a lot of things. Defense mechanism. How to swing a club. Take and give a punch. Deal a roundhouse kick. He called them survival tips. At first I wondered why he taught me all those when I was young, barely eight. When I turned eleven he was barely around, working long hours because things started to get tough for us. My mom wasn’t exactly the ‘loving mother’ or ‘loving supporting wife ’ sort, I’d always had this feeling that she didn’t love me at all when I was growing up. She practically neglected me. So when dad’s away I’d hang out with the street kids. I shouldn’t have.”
“And that’s why you ran with the wild crowd. Why would she do that?”
I shrugged. “I don’t know. Sometimes during one of hers and dad’s fight’s I’d hear my name. I get the notion they’re fighting over me, but I never really hear anything. Then father had this bad accident at a construction site that made him unable to walk. That’s when I started working. I was popular with Queenslanders then. And I understood why dad thought I should know series of street skills. I’d get into trouble more often than not, and if Maggie or Carl’s not there to get me out, I just fight my way out. I liked working, and I liked being reckless because it got my mind off things. But then I got too reckless I guess. I dated a couple times, just for the fun of it. All the girls at school had boyfriends, I wasn’t going to be left out.”
“One of this guys did a number on you?”
“No, well sort of. I’m a difficult person I’ll admit. They left because I always held back from things getting too serious. Tom was different. At least I thought he was….”
“Ummy this is going to end badly. Look, I’m not going to be your cry pad when Tom leaves you like Zach and Wayne did because you refuse to be like other girls, then you come to my house, get drunk with a gallon of chocolate drinks while Carl and I look on because there’s nothing we can do. No siree,” Maggie ranted as we closed up.
“Aw come on Mag. Tell her Carl. Tom’s cool. And he’s got money. Fat pockets,” I slapped my thighs to emphasize.
Carl shook his head slowly. “I don’t know Um, Maggie’s right. I don’t want you to get hurt again,” he murmured.
I scoffed. “The guy’s asked me out. And I say, Umbria, he’s handsome and rich, so go for it. And I say again, you’re right Umbria… he’s da catch of Queens so why not.” I laughed. “I’ve told him I’ll sleep on it. But it’s already written on the stars…I’m gonna date him.”
“Don’t say I didn’t warn you,” Maggie said.
“And I’ll get gallons of chocolate ready for the heartbreak day,” said Carl and I punched his arm.
“Ow!” he yelped.
“Be positive,” I hissed.
Tom and I had been dating for about two months or so. Dad doesn’t really like him, neither does my friends Maggie and Carl. Mom doesn’t give a damn while other girls keep hailing me for making the catch. But for me, I feel like there’s something fishy about him. The way he talks sometimes. Needle points on his hands. Dad tells me that drug addicts have such points on their hands from where they inject the drugs. I don’t believe that though, I love Tom. Even though he’s being a bit too forward about the sex part of our relationship.
“I’m not ready yet Tom,” I said to him. We’re in his house one evening and as usual he’s making advances. The same problem I had with my previous boyfriends.
“Damn babe, for how long you gonna keep me starved. I say, I want you now,” he said and hit his first on the side stool, making a bottle and some glasses shake. It’s recently I found out that Tom’s a heavy drinker. But that’s not a problem right? Though concerned people keep telling me that he’s up to no good, I don’t care.
“Just a little more time Tom. I promise.”
“What’s up with now!? What’s up with you? You’re not some timid virgin or saint. Are you?”
The way he said it, as if being a virgin’s a bad thing. That made me angry.
“So what’s wrong with being one? I said I’m not ready and I mean it. Don’t push it,” I almost yelled.
He breathed out and held my shoulder. “Sorry babe just…. I’m sorry I wasn’t thinking. I had a bad day at work, let me pour you a drink.”
“What kind of work do you do?” I asked as he poured the drink. I just realized I don’t know the exact job he does.
“Isn’t it too late to ask that?” he said with a smirk and handed me a glass of Bourbon. I hardly drink no matter the bad girl I like acting as, but I didn’t want to risk Tom getting angry again so I took a big gulp. It burned my throat and made my head fuzzy. I shook my head to clear the haze.
“It is but —”
“I buy you stuff. Jewelry. Those girlish knickknacks to show your friends. And I support the stupid treatment for your stupid father, isn’t that enough?”
My brain didn’t quite register what he was saying and I nodded stupidly. “But my father’s not —”
“Cheers babe, to two months of love and money,” he cut in raising his glass. We hit with a small clink and drank. I took a sip. Then another. And another. And another until I’d emptied two glasses and laughed like a lightheaded bimbo.
Tom trailed his hands up my thighs. I still had the sense to slap him off and pull at my skirt.
He grinned icily and poured more drinks for me.
I downed them all.
“How’d you feel baby?”
“Yeah. Now here’s something that’ll take you to cloud nine. You up for it.”
“Upp for aanything……
He grinned. “Coke.”💉
🍯” Next bottle please! ” I said to Maggie who shook her head. I screamed and reached for the chocolate jar myself and drank it in a big gulp. “Carl….Margar
I’d woken up to a painful headache to see Carl and Maggie in front of me. I recognized that this was Carl’s house. What happened, last time I was with Tom. Carl explained that he’d been passing through that street on his way to a friend’s when he heard me scream. He knocked on the door and there was no answer so he broke in. Only to find me on the floor in a dead faint, bottles and glasses strewn around, and cocaine dusting my face. No Tom. He brought me here and called Maggie who rushed down with a bottle of chocolate, while they got me cleaned up and administered painkillers. Still can’t believe Tom would do something like that.
“Knew we couldn’t trust that guy! I swear if I saw him anywhere I’d give him a good beating.”
I just shook my head.
I feel like a truck ran over me. My head was throbbing greatly. My eyes hurt.
My phone buzzed in my pocket and I brought it out to see a message for him:
**I’d have preferred a slick, tight hole, but this video’s a bigger turn on. Check it out…. XO.**
Looking at Carl’s and Maggie’s faces, I tapped on the attached video and screamed. I looked like a damn, stupid, frigging drug addict with dope allover my face. Begging for more…..? God! What have I done to this guy?
“I’d kill that motherfucker I swear!” Carl punched the wall.
Maggie quickly carried my phone.
**Don’t let it go viral Tom. What do you want?**
**Nothing. Making a fool out of you is reward enough. I won’t circulate, but know that every moment I watch this then I think of you. And don’t worry, I’ll be back to finish what I left undone. Swt lil thang**
Ignoring my friends, I downed more of the chocolate sweetness.
I hate guys…..
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Oscar scooped me into his arms as I tried not to cry again. It still hurts when I think of it, and I tried not to for two years.
“If ever I lay eyes on that animal I swear I will pound him to a pulp,” Oscar gritted out, and I could feel the anger he kept suppressed in the way his muscles vibrated. It made me feel giddy, happy and loved.
“I don’t ever want to see him again, that’s the past,” I muttered into his shirt.
“You’re pretty strong you know? To still remain hardheaded after all that. It’s one of the things that got me to notice you.”
“Your voice, and your Primrose cake. That one won me over straightaway.”
I laughed. “Oh really, does that explain the congratulatory kiss?”
“Nope. I’d always wanted to kiss those lips. And… I’m about to do it again,” he husked out. My lips already parted for his. He kissed me, then hugged me to himself.
I breathes in the fragrance of primroses, and his citrusy cologne.
I’ve experienced this feeling.
Best thing ever.
“You know you still got classes,” he said.
“I know, let’s just stay here a little while longer,” I murmured.
The sound of his chuckle which I heard through his chest lulled me into a short doze.