As the relationship between Cass and Flynn develops, Rob's interest becomes increasingly malevolent. One terrible night changes Cass's life and threatens to destroy her relationship with Flynn, as well as her future.
When I arrived at Neve’s house for her parents’ party, I felt strangely nervous. This would be the first time I had seen Flynn since he dropped me off and, other than a few flirty texts, we hadn’t had any other contact.
Getting ready at home, I had felt like I was preparing for a date with him, which was absurd as I knew he was going out for the evening with Jake. The deep red top I had bought on impulse when I went shopping with Neve looked great with my black jeans. I had managed to twist my hair into beach waves and, other than opting for a little more eyeliner than usual, I kept my make-up light. My new-found confidence added an invisible glow which made me focus on what I liked when I looked in the mirror, rather than concentrating on the bits I wanted to change.
Neve had also made an effort: her new jeans were topped off with a glittery off-one-shoulder top and she had a plait snaking across her hairline before it fell into loose curls. She looked like she should be on the pages of a magazine, but instead was opening the door and squealing my name. After dropping my overnight bag in her room, we went to the kitchen where there was a makeshift bar and array of snacks on the breakfast bar. We perched on a couple of the stools, knowing that most of the people in the lounge would be too old to be that interesting. The loud music we could hear in there was certainly from way before our time.
Before we had finished our first drink, a hand brushed against my lower back and I felt that familiar tingle start. I turned my head just as Flynn was lowering his to kiss the back of my neck and our heads bumped into one another. Rubbing his forehead, Flynn opted for a smile instead.
“Hi.” I felt strangely shy and very conscious of Neve sat across from me.
“Hi, Cass. Long time, no see.” Flynn was wearing a white tee shirt under a black jacket, along with his usual jeans and boots. His hair was casually messed into the sort of style favoured by bands like One Direction. I knew he would be offended by the comparison but he looked fantastic to me. He opened a bottle of beer and started drinking. I couldn’t pull my eyes away from the way his mouth curled around the top of the bottle, thinking of how wonderful his mouth felt on mine. I almost lost it when his tongue peeped out to lick a droplet from his lip after he had lowered the bottle. Obsessed, moi?
“Where are you going tonight?” Neve filled the silence, possibly sensing that I had lost the ability to speak.
“A group of us have got tickets for the Tree House. There’s a couple of decent bands playing and it includes an open bar,” he said, checking the time on his phone. “I better get going. I’ve got to be at Jake’s in ten minutes.” He took another swig, put the bottle down, gave us a smile and, after popping in to say goodbye to his parents, left.
No kiss, no hug, nothing. I tried not to let Neve see that I was disappointed by his departure and picked up my drink to give myself something to focus on.
“I bet he’ll be wasted tonight. Wonder if he will even make it back from Jake’s?” I murmured agreement but Neve’s comment just made me feel even more deflated. As I took a long gulp of my drink, I felt my phone vibrate in my back pocket.
Flynn: You look hot tonight ;-)
Me: Thanks. You left quick L
Flynn: Had to leave or else I would have dragged you upstairs and done naughty things to you ;-)
Me: *doesn’t know what to say* x
Flynn: Just say yes ;-)
Me: lol Are you coming back home tonight?
Flynn: Yes. Not until late though. Will you be up? x
Me: Text me when you get in and we’ll see x
Flynn: OK. Don’t get too drunk! x
Me: You too! xx
Well, that made the evening feel a whole lot better. After a couple of hours in the kitchen, we went and danced for a bit in the lounge before stealing some drinks and hiding in Neve’s room. As an act of rebellion against those re-living the 1980s downstairs, we danced along to Beyoncé and Lady Gaga, making up our own routines when we didn’t know the moves. We ended up lay side by side on her bed, slightly drunk, singing along with hand movements.
“So how are things going with my lovely brother then?” Neve continued with the horizontal dancing.
“OK, I think. I haven’t seen him since I left here.”
“Yeah, but I could see the soppy look on your face when you were texting him earlier.” I hit her on the head with a pillow instead of replying. She had said she didn’t want to hear any gory details and I didn’t trust myself to talk about him without gushing about how wonderful he was and how he made me feel.
“Is it serious, Cass?” The hand dancing stopped and she looked at me intently.
“It is for me. You know I’ve never had a boyfriend. It feels great. I don’t know how long it will last but I’m enjoying it for now.”
“Why wouldn’t it last?”
“Well, life gets back to normal in a few days. We go back to school and Flynn goes back to Uni. I don’t know how it can work.”
“He’s half an hour away, for God’s sake, not the end of the earth! Is this really about the distance?” As my best friend, Neve knew exactly how to spot my fears. “Or is it more about what he might be doing?”
“I can’t believe that he likes me now Neve, let alone when he’s back living the Uni life. You saw the stuff on Facebook when he started.” Voicing my fear made it all the more real.
“You’re going to have to trust him, Cass. He wouldn’t have started anything if he wasn’t serious. You know he’s not that type.” As much as I wanted to believe Neve, there was a small knot of anxiety starting to form in my stomach, but I didn’t want it to ruin what had been a great evening.
“Come on, let’s get another drink!” I jumped off the bed, straightened my clothes and went downstairs, followed by Neve.
As we danced along to some golden oldies in the lounge, enjoying the buzz of another cider, I felt a pair of hands grip my waist and pull me into a hard body. As Flynn moved his hips in rhythm with mine, he pulled my hair to one side and kissed the back of my neck. And that was all it took to fill me with longing.
About the Author:
I’ve always been an avid reader and occasional writer, but only ever for my own eyes! Then, last year, I read my first New Adult novel - and I was hooked. After consuming a vast e-pile of NA, the burning need to write my own was overwhelming. And so I started…
Fitting in writing around a demanding job and a wonderfully supportive husband has been, umm, interesting at times but the whole process has been a fantastic experience. I have been blown away by the friendliness and support shown by the readers, writers and bloggers who make up the NA and Indie communities; online with them is one of my favourite places to hang out!
I have already started the follow-up novel to Curve, Heart, which follows Neve as she starts at university.
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