|The Boys Next Door
Author: junebird28 PM
What are the odds that I would end up moving next to the three hottest guys I have ever seen? And what are the odds that my 24-year-old brother would punch the one that I truly liked? The odds are pretty high for me 'cause luck just isn't on my side. Reposting edited version!Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance - Chapters: 24 - Words: 102,863 - Reviews: 548 - Favs: 227 - Follows: 299 - Updated: 03-20-13 - Published: 08-07-08 - id: 2556126
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Author's Note: THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR REVIEWS! I'm so glad this is being received well!
As for all my readers who read the original, I re-edited the edited version. No worries, this won't delay new chapters, I'll have the full story up again in a couple of weeks and by then, I should have the newest chapters done too. I hope you're not too mad :/
Well, without further adieu...
Begging and Screaming
"Aw Rosie, don't be mad!" Seth begged as I slammed my bedroom door shut. "Please talk to me!"
"Go away!" I shouted through my door.
"Come on! I didn't hurt him too bad!"
I wrenched the door open and Seth looked at me shocked. "Too bad? He was bleeding! God, and in his house too! You are so lucky that they weren't too mad."
After Seth's fist collided with what it was aiming for, Caleb let out a shout of pain. He was facing the wall and I grabbed his arm to turn him around to face me. He touched his bottom lip and I moved his hand, gasping when I saw his lip was split and bleeding. I smacked Seth on the arm- who was looking very smug, I might add- before turning back to Caleb. Jayden and Nate were looking at the scene through the basement door and both were stifling their laughter. Mr. and Mrs. Johnson rushed into the room and had worry written all over their faces.
"What just happened here?" Mrs Johnson asked, standing opposite me facing her son.
I shot a glare at Seth and looked back at Caleb who was pushing his mother's fussy hands away. "Mom, stop, I'm fine, it's nothing."
"Mrs. Johnson, I am so sorry on behalf of my brother," I said, looking at her with worry. God, this was not the way I wanted this day to go. "He just thought that Caleb and I were- that we, uh-"
Realization dawned on her face and she smiled at me as I fumbled with my words, my face reddening and looked at Seth, who had an apologetic smile on his face. A small laugh escaped her lips and she shook her head, looking back at Caleb. "Ah, I see. It's not too bad, I'll go get the bandages." She patted his cheek before leaving.
I looked after her, bewildered before looking back at Caleb, who was touching his cut. "Stop that, you're gonna make it worse," I said, grabbing his hand. As soon as I realized what I did, I blushed. He looked down at my hand on his and I quickly withdrew it as his mother returned. I beckoned for the bandages and the alcohol wipe and she placed them in my hand before averting my eyes back to Caleb. The blood was dripping from his lip and I grimaced. His lip was a little swollen, but he still looked utterly gorgeous. I used to be afraid of blood, but after tripping, cutting myself, and just being so clumsy, I got used to it. I was glad that I've gotten hurt so often that I knew how to clean and dress a wound properly. I opened the wipe, looking him in the eyes. "This is gonna sting a bit." I began dabbing his cut and he winced. "Sorry." I glanced up at him and he was staring at me intently, making me blush. I lowered my gaze. "What?" I asked softly.
He glanced behind me at who I assumed was Seth. "Nothing."
I glanced at Seth, giving him a cool, hard glare. "You know, you should be the one doing this."
He sighed, rolling his eyes. "Fine." He took the alcohol pad from me and took my place in front of Caleb, who stepped away. "I'm not going to hurt you."
"It's okay," I assured Caleb. "Seth's a doctor." He looked at me and nodded, while Seth took a look at the cut.
"Rose did a good job on it, it just needs a bandage. Not deep enough to need stitches, unfortunately," Seth muttered.
"Seth!" I exclaimed, my eyes wide while everyone else chuckled. "Apologize! Right now!"
He looked at me, an eyebrow up. "Seriously?" When I gave him a pointed look he sighed. "Fine." He looked at Caleb. "Sorry."
"Don't sweat it," Caleb responded, as Seth placed the bandage on his lip.
I looked at the rest of the Johnson family and the rest of them had amused smiles on their faces. What was with these people? My brother just punched their son and brother and they're laughing? "I don't get it. My brother just punched Caleb. Why is this so funny?"
One of the corner's of Caleb's mouth lifted as Jayden's voice behind me answered my question. "This isn't the first time this has happened."
"What do you mean?" I asked, my eyes turning to Caleb's face and dropping to his now bandaged, pink lips. I could just feel my heart beating faster and I tried to smother my feelings and not think about it. I didn't need to deal with these annoying feelings for some boy.
This time, Nate clarified. "This isn't the first time Caleb's been punched because of a girl."
Seth scoffed and I looked up at Caleb who was narrowing his eyes at his brothers. "But nothing happened," I mumbled, looking at the ground.
I could feel him looking at my face and I blushed in spite of myself. I heard Jayden and Nate chuckle when Seth huffed and left the room. I giggled and Caleb smiled at me. "Thank you for your help."
"No problem," I said, softly. "Well, I guess I should get going. I'm sorry about that, by the way. My brother has a tendency to be a little overprotective."
"Yeah, just a bit," Caleb said, teasing.
"Sorry," I said.
"It's okay. Now we're even. My lip for your finger." He smiled at me warmly and I nodded, agreeing with him.
"Hey, Rose. Why don't we show you around town and stuff?" Jayden asked.
Was he actually asking me if I wanted to hang out with them? "Um, well, I'm going to be unpacking and stuff tomorrow, so I don't know..."
"Then how about the day after?"
How was I going to get out of this? The only reason today wasn't as awkward was cause Seth was here. "You guys actually want to show me around?" I asked hesitantly. They all looked at me confused.
"Why wouldn't we?" Nate asked.
"I mean, my brother just punched you," I said to Caleb, who grinned.
"It's no big deal. Come on, you can take one day out of your busy schedule," he teased.
I blushed and nodded. "Alright then."
They all beamed. "Great! We'll pick you up at around 11:00 on Wednesday, okay?" Jayden said.
Ugh, so early. "Sure, I just have to double check with my brother, but after today, he can't really say no." They all laughed, making me smile. "Okay, well I'll see you guys then," I said, smiling hesitantly. We said our goodbye's and I went into the living room, where Seth and the other adults waited. "Thank you for having us for dinner. Sorry about Caleb."
Mrs. Johnson laughed. "That's okay. He wasn't too badly injured. Things happen. And it was a pleasure to have you for dinner. We'd love to do this again sometime."
"Sure, we'd love that," I said.
Seth smiled at them and we said our goodbye's to them as well.
And that's when this happened.
"I'm sorry. Really," he said.
"About hitting him or upsetting me?" I asked, bitterly. He looked down and didn't answer. I rolled my eyes. "Figures." I crossed my arms across my chest. "Haven't I already explained what happened?"
"And? He didn't do anything! In fact, he probably saved me from giving myself a concussion!"
"He still touched you," Seth grumbled.
I let out a cry of exasperation. "Oh, heaven forbid a boy touches me!" Seth shrugged. "Seth, I'm almost 17. Am I never allowed to have a boyfriend?"
"That's preferable," he said.
"Ugh, fine. I'll try to lighten up."
"Oh, you won't just try, Seth. You will lighten up," I said, menacingly.
"Rosie, you have to understand where I'm coming from."
"Fine. Explain, then," I said, moving my hands to my hips.
"You're the only person I have left besides Alexis. You mean the world to me and I don't want you to get hurt by some stupid boy."
I sighed. "What if I won't get hurt? You can't keep me sheltered my whole life."
"Oh, you have no idea how much I wish I could," Seth said in a low voice.
I smiled. "I understand that you love me and think I'm awesome, but you can't possibly think that I'll never have a boyfriend."
"Don't flatter yourself. You're not that great," Seth said, teasing me with a small smile of his own.
"Then maybe you should let some boy hurt me. I don't deserve to be protected," I said, faking hurt and innocence.
"It doesn't matter how un-awesome you may be. You're still my baby sister and I'll always want to protect you," he said, ruffling my hair and doing a baby voice.
I smacked his hand and he laughed. "I'm not a baby, you idiot. Like I said, I'm 16. The last time I was a baby was many, many moons ago."
"Yeah, but no matter how many moons pass, you'll always be my baby sister and I'll always feel the need to protect you from the big, bad world."
I rolled my eyes. "Yes, the big bad world where boys save girls from falling down a flight of stairs. Ooooh scary."
"Fine, I get the hint. I'll apologize for real next time," he said, looking down at his feet.
"Good. Thank you. Honestly, sometimes I feel like I'm your older sister and that I need to teach you manners. Like how not to punch somebody in the face when they were just trying to help your sister."
"Okay, I get it! I'm sorry," he said, rubbing the back of his head.
"No, that's okay. I just like reminding you. It's fun," I said, smiling devilishly.
His mouth dropped in surprise, but his eyes were wide with amusement. "Why you little..." He lunged at me, but I quickly sprang out of his way and ran down the stairs, laughing loudly. When I got to the kitchen, he cornered me and rubbed his fist against the top of my head hard.
I smacked his hand and he laughed at my expense. I'm sure my hair just looked fabulous. I pouted and he laughed even harder. He hugged me and I pushed him away. "Go to sleep, kid; we have a long day tomorrow."
"Oh yes, I can't wait!" I said sarcastically as I looked around at all of the boxes on the counter.
"Goodnight, my baby sister," he called as I stomped up the stairs.
"G'night, older brother who knows all." I entered my room hearing his bark of laughter before I closed the door.
"Hey Seth? Are you expecting anyone?" I called, to wherever he was after the doorbell rang.
His head poked out of the kitchen door and said, "Um, about that..."
But before he could finish his thought, I opened the door and the blonde haired, beautiful brat was in front of me. "Alexis."
"Rosemary," she said, as her own greeting. Then she looked past me and her face broke out into a gorgeous smile when my brother walked closer. She pushed past me and leapt into my brother's arms. "Seth!"
"Hey beautiful!" he said happily. I glared at him and he shrugged at me. In a second they were connected at the lips. I rolled my eyes and slammed the door shut, causing them to move away from each other.
"Can we just get started with the cleaning?" I asked.
"Sure," Seth said, wrapping his arm around Alexis. "I guess we could start with the kitchen."
"Baby, why did you cancel on me last night?" Alexis asked, pouting her full lips.
"I'm sorry. Rosie and I went to have dinner with the neighbors," Seth answered her. I had to admit though, even though the sight of Seth and Alexis together made me want to gag, they looked so good together. My brother's almost black hair and gray eyes contrasted so much with Alexis' blond hair and bright blue eyes. Seth had tanned skin, while Alexis was a peachy pale. He was 6' 3"; she was 5' 3". And they were both beautiful. I felt so ugly standing next to them.
"Well, you have to make it up to me, okay?" Alexis said.
"Tomorrow then. Rosie's going out with some friends, so we'll have lunch, okay?" She nodded and he kissed her forehead.
Enough of this. I pushed past them and began unloading the boxes.
A few hours later, we moved on to the living room and then I cooked some lunch. After we ate, Seth and Alexis went to go do Seth's room, while I went in mine. They were definitely not doing any cleaning. I assumed that they wouldn't even notice I was gone for a couple of hours, so I quickly changed my clothes and left the house.
I didn't know where I was going exactly, but what better way to get to know the town than to explore? I walked past the Johnson house and didn't think about where I was going at all. After about half an hour of walking I reached a clearing that looked like a park. I walked inside and went to sit on the swings. Off to the other side, there was a family playing on the slide and I sighed. They looked so happy, so complete.
Then my ears were filled by a ringing noise. It took me a second to realize that my phone was ringing. When I saw the caller ID, a smile broke out on my face. "Lana!"
"Baby! How are you?" my best friend, Lana asked. Lana and I had known each other forever. She was always there for me and it was harder for her to see me leave than it was for me to leave.
"Not too good. I miss Manhattan!" I complained.
"I know, my darling," she said.
"Seriously, it's so quiet here! There's no police sirens, no sounds of honking, no people. Honestly, I think there's only about 500 people living here."
"Wow. That really does suck," she said. Like me, she was a city girl. "God, I miss you."
"Yeah, me too and it's only been a day."
"So anything interesting happen?"
I rolled my eyes, knowing exactly what she was asking about. Lana was boy-crazy. There was no doubt about it. "Actually, yes," I said, blushing as I thought of Caleb.
"Oooh, tell, tell," she said.
And so I did. After looking to see if there was anyone around to hear, I launched into my story about the three guys next door. I mentioned everything.
"You are so lucky! Not one. Not two. But three insanely hot guys living next door to you! I wish. Nobody in this freaking apartment building is cute."
"Yeah, but I don't like any of them anyways," I lied.
"Yeah right! Even over the phone I can tell you're turning red!" Lana teased.
"Oh, go dig a hole," I told her, my face indeed turning a lovely shade of pink.
"You know, I never did get it when you said that. What exactly am I supposed to do with this hole?"
"I don't know, plant a tree or something," I mumbled.
We talked for about another 15 minutes before she had to go on a date. Again.
I got off the swing and started to walk around the park. It was actually really big. There was a sandbox where a couple of little kids played, a playground, a basketball court and some tennis courts. I walked around under the shade of some trees and wasn't paying any attention to anything, so I tripped. And fell flat on my face. I'm so slow that I didn't even bring my hands out like a normal person does.
I groaned and propped myself up on my hands. I heard footsteps coming toward me and I looked up to see a guy with blond hair run up to me. "Hey, are you okay?"
I nodded and took the hand he extended to me. "Thanks," I mumbled brushing myself off.
"No problem," he said. He smiled at me and I noticed that he was extremely cute. He had bright green eyes and freckles dotted his nose. "I haven't seen you before. Are you new around here?" I nodded. "Figures. What's your name?"
"Rose," I said, smiling shyly at him. He had a British accent. A British accent!
"Rose," he repeated. "That's a really pretty name. I'm Callum."
"Nice to meet you."
"Same," I said, meaning it too.
"Are you hurt at all?"
I blushed furiously. I'm such a spaz. "No."
"Good," he said, smiling and squinting in the sun.
After a moment of awkward silence, I blurted out, "You're British." I'm so stupid.
He laughed and my face warmed even more. "And you're American," he said. I laughed kind of nervously. "Yes I am British. I moved here last year."
"What part of England?"
"London," he answered smoothly.
"London? Why would you move here?" I asked, incredulously. I've always wanted to go to London.
"It got a little boring," he said, with a shrug.
"Boring? How can London get boring? New York City never bores me and you're complaining about London?"
"I'm not complaining. It's just the truth. And honestly, New York City is quite interesting. It really never seems to get old."
Just that one sentence made my heart warm up. He was definitely alright in my book. "I agree with that."
We talked for a while and eventually we both ended up sitting on the grass just talking. He was really nice and all my shyness went away as we talked. I hadn't been that comfortable talking to someone new since the day I met Lana. We talked about everything and anything. He was a soccer player and he went to the same school as me also, which was also the only school within 15 miles of here. He was an only child and lived with just his parents. He really only moved here because his father was American and he missed it here.
We were in the middle of talking about our favorite movies when my phone rang again. I groaned when I saw Seth's name on the caller ID.
"Hi Seth," I said, weakly.
"Where the hell are you, Rosemary?" God, he was using my full name. That was not a good sign.
"I'm at the park."
"And what exactly are you doing there?" he yelled.
"Jeez, no need to shout. I just felt like exploring, that's all." Callum gave me a sympathetic smile and I rolled my eyes at my brother's behavior.
"You didn't even feel the need to tell me about this 'exploring?'"
"I'm sorry. I'm coming home right now," I said.
"You know, I have half a mind to not let you go to town with the neighbors tomorrow," he threatened.
"No, don't do that! Listen, can we discuss this when I get home? I need to say 'bye' to my friend." Then I bit my tongue. I shouldn't have told him that.
"Friend? What fri-"
"Bye, Seth," I said quickly, shutting the phone. Then I flashed Callum a smile and his dimples reappeared. "I have to go."
"Was that your parents?"
"No. My brother." I got up and started to wipe off the dirt and grass.
Callum stood too and smiled at me. "Oh. He didn't sound too happy."
"Yeah." I looked down at the grass, digging a hole into the dirt with my toe, an awkward moment filling the air.
Callum cleared his throat and I looked up at him. He seemed kind of nervous. "Hey, um, could I have your phone number? You know so we could hang out or something?" Okay. He just made that sound like the hottest thing ever. Did I mention that I have a huge thing for accents? Especially British ones?
I blushed, even though I knew he only meant it in a friendly way. Or at least I hoped. "Um sure." We quickly exchanged numbers and I left the park, ready to face my annoying older brother.
What do you guys think of Callum?
Please, please, please review!