I pause for a minute, listening to the sounds of the house. There is complete silence. I glance back to the beautiful bedroom near mine, where Ann is supposed to be sleeping. I hear soft breathing from that room, so I keep going. The greatest threat to what I'm doing is asleep. I slipped down the stairs and tip-toe into the cool darkness of the basement. I see a soft glow of light coming from under a door, so I skirt that.

Suddenly, I feel something soft and small crash into my body. The top of it barely comes up to I touch it lightly and brush my fingers all up and down the side of it. I stop. This "thing" is curvy and warm. I look down, finally able to see in the dark. My eyes widen. The soft, small, warm thing is a girl. She snuggles up against my chest and lets out a soft snore. A sleepwalker. After a minute, I pick her up. She isn't big enough to actually be heavy. I carry her to Ann's room and switch on the light. Ann is missing. I set the girl down on the bed and look down. I realize that the girl is Ann.

Ann stirs and opens her eyes. She looks at me for a minute and then says drowsily, "Dustin?"

I nod. She gets up, still half-asleep, I think, wraps her arms around my neck and kisses me soundly. After a moment, she pulls away. "Dustin?"


She goes, "I love you." I'm flabbergasted. This itty-bitty baby-doll of a girl, barely fourteen, is telling me she loves me? Granted, I turned fifteen myself two weeks ago, but still, this is my worst enemy we're talking about. My absolute, all-time, always has been, always will be, enemy.

She snores. Then I get it. She's still asleep. Then why are her cheeks burning red? I pick her up once again and place her on the bed. Her black curls splay out on her pillow and her lips are full and a nice, pretty pink. I lean down over Ann and kiss her gently, just because I like doing it. Almost instantly, a tiny hand is punching at my chest. She shoves me off her and sits up. "What do you think you're doing?" she says in a loud whisper.

I look guilty. I just know it. She tugs at a curl and plays with it in that familiar gesture that would be flirting if she were talking to anyone else. In fact, that's what got her big brother to kick my butt. He thought she was flirting. Well, she was, but that was to bug me and make my mom think that she was m girlfriend, therefore giving me a heart attack and getting rid of me. She glares at me. "And come to think of it, what are you doing in my house?"

I shrug. "Putting sugar in your salt?" I say hopefully.

She gets to her feet. I notice she's wearing nothing but a flimsy, transparent night gown. A short on to boot. It barely came halfway down her thighs. She notices what I'm looking at and then hauls off and punches me. It doesn't hurt; she's not terribly strong, but it is a little surprising. Well, maybe not, considering I can tell the whole world that she wears pink panties with little yellow stars all over them and that she wears a lacy orange bra. I sneak a peek at her closet, which is open. Most of her bra's are bright-coloured. Maybe it isn't good for me to know the color of her bras. Most of them are red...

She glares at me. "You ass. If you do that, you'll kill my mom of a sugar overdose. She's diabetic. You might even kill me, you big brute, because I'm a borderline diabetic too."

I pause. "Okay... I have no clue what that meant."

"Have you done it already?"

I smirk suddenly. My mom's already going to kill me. I yank her up against my chest and kiss her. Her eyes widen and she struggles to get free, but considering the fact that I work out and play football and stuff like that, she really doesn't have a chance. Suddenly, she goes limp. I stop and pull away. Uh-oh. Did I hurt her? Apparently not. She starts struggling again. At last, she sort of sags against me. She puts her arms around my neck. "Dustin?"

"Yes, Ann?"

"Did I do anything stupid when you came in. I'm pretty sure I was sleepwalking again."

I grin. "Oh, yeah, babe, you were sleepwalking again. You professed your undying love for me."

She stiffens. "What?"

"YOu heard me."

"Oh. Sorry."

"Did you mean it?"

"WHat?" SHe looks up, astonished. Her big eyes are almost black, they're so dark.

"Did you mean it?"

She flushes red. "Well--" She look up and groans, "Lord, if you have any mercy whatsoever, stop me from looking like a fool." She looks at me and shrugs. "Yeah. I meant it."

A smile spreads across my face. "Good."