Chapter 7

The Prince's Thorn

Von's POV

I knew that she hated me. She was also scared of me but she didn't want to admit it to herself. She'd rather get shot than admit such weakness. And from what I had learned and observed from the new her, her pride was very important to her.

But I was still pissed that she hit me. I had to threaten to beat my crew up into a pulp if they didn't stop laughing when she hit me in front of everyone. I rubbed the spot on my face where her fist grazed me. It didn't hurt much, only my fucking ego from getting beat up by a girl, but I got to admit, she was strong. I had to give her credit for that.

But I missed the old her. I missed those times when we were kids when she used to look at me with admiration in her adorable green eyes. I missed those times when she followed me everywhere in her pink dress. She used to prance around with a tiara on her head and in her mother's heels, playing pretend. I missed those times when she called me her prince.

She used to wear pink dresses all the freaking time when she was little girl. But now, her usual attire would be a black shirt and jeans and a pair of black high-tops. From the sweet and adorable little girl who went her way to please everyone, she grew up to be an anti-social and a cautious teenager.

I sighed. I guess I did that to her, turned her into freaking tomboy. Damn. It must have been really my fault. Granted, I was just a kid who can't express his feelings properly back then, I shouldn't still had let out all my frustrations about my family to her. She didn't even remember me now. Lance knew who I was the moment he saw me, and he understood why I said those mean things to her. He even knew about my feelings for her but it was all up to me not to screw up things. As if things weren't already fucked up.

I stood up, dismissing the depressing thoughts away, and then grabbed my skateboard. Brock and Carter looked at me as I passed but I just ignored them. Lance had to take Rei home because she wanted to go home and he didn't want to make her leave all by herself. I got into my car and slammed it shut. I turned the volume up, Chemical Romance blasting on the speakers, and closed my eyes.

Suddenly, someone got in the car and turned off the music. I opened my eyes to see Lance.

"My ears are still blistering from the lecture I got from my sister, you know," he said, glaring at me. "I had to buy her ice cream just to get her to shut up on the way home."

I sighed as I turned on my music, not up to hearing Lance whine about his sister. I didn't want to think about her just yet. But Lance slapped my hand away and turned off the music again. My hand itched to punch him. This was my car, my seats and my music he was trespassing on. But I kept my cool. I knew Lance was doing this to aggravate me.

"Then, you shouldn't have escorted her home," I replied indifferently.

"Whatever," he said curtly. "I thought you were going to make her like you, not piss her even more."

I sent him a steely glare. Gosh, he was annoying. I guess it ran in the family.

"Yeah, so? Are you going to tell me off for being a dick?"

"Not really. I was just going to tell you that you don't want her to dislike you even more. My sister even hates breathing the same air you breathe."

I snorted as I leaned back on my seat.

"I feel the same way, Lance," I drawled out, not meeting his eyes.

Lance raised a brow at me as he shifted on his seat so that he was facing me.

"Sure, you do," he deadpanned.

"I don't even like her."

"Really."

"She's not even hot. I like my women long, blond and hot."

"I'm not so sure about that," Lance replied in a nonchalant manner that got me piqued. "Some guys went up to me yesterday, asking if she's single and if they could ask her out."

I stiffened then cursed.

"Who the hell were they?" I demanded furiously. "Did you allow them to ask her out? Those bastards! I'm going to kill them. Give me their names and I'll beat the crap out of them."

Lance laughed and urge to inflict pain on him was growing stronger and stronger.

"Chill, dude." Lance raised his hands up in a defensive position. "I told them to ask you first and if it was okay with you then it's fine with me." Lance snickered. "You should have seen their faces. They looked so frigging scared that I thought they might piss themselves."

I let the scowl on my face disappear. Good. They should know their place, the stupid bastards. Nobody takes what's mine and gets away with it. Nobody.

"My sister is not even pretty. Why in the world would they date someone ugly as her?"

I felt myself bristle again. Was he really trying to rile me up? Lance was lucky he was my best friend and that he was Rei's brother. I would have punched the living lights out of him by now.

"Your sister isn't ugly. She's beautiful," I said in an even tone, trying to control my rising temper.

He shrugged.

"Her eyes are a sickly green. Like a… like cow's puke or a baby's poo."

"Her eyes are the most magnificent shade of green and they are not, in any way, like a baby's poo."

"Her hair's dull and boring," he continued like he was reading it off a menu.

"Her hair is long, silky and beautiful," I said through gritted teeth.

"She look like– "

"What the hell is wrong with you, man?" I yelled at him, completely losing my temper. "You're insulting your own sister! And why the hell am I spouting words like some idiotic love-struck poet? Just shut up already!"

Lance burst out laughing. I frowned then decided to ignore him. I turned the music on to tune out his irritating braying but the idiot turned it off again.

"Stop touching my stuff," I muttered but didn't turn it on again.

"Would you care if Rei goes out with other guys?" he asked with a cheeky grin on his face.

My hands itched punch the smug look out of his face. I glared at him fiercely but he didn't even blink. I sighed, instead. I knew that Lance wouldn't stop pestering me if I didn't reply anyway so I guess I had to answer him truthfully.

"I'd care," I admitted sullenly.

He grinned widely before punching my arm.

"Then, you do like her."

I groaned.

"I don't know, Lance." I thumped my head on the steering wheel, thoroughly disgruntled by now. "You said it yourself. She dislikes me. And when she realizes who I really am, then she's probably going to loathe me. God, I'm sure she still has a grudge on me because of what I did when we were 12."

"Don't be such a wuss, Von," Lance said firmly as he patted my back. "I'm just telling you to drop the attitude and get your act together, man. And I'm frigging sure that she doesn't have a grudge on you. Maybe just a little pissed."

"Well, it's too late," I muttered. "She hates me."

His frown indicated that he didn't agree.

"Shit, you're hopeless." Lance shook his head sadly. "I'm not handing my sister over to some loser, Von."

I glared at him. I hate to admit it, but he was right. I was acting like a damn wuss and a whiny baby. That's what I liked about Lance, when things get serious, he thinks rationally, not letting his emotions interfere.

"I didn't say anything about dating her," I grumbled.

Lance narrowed his eyes at me.

"Are you sure? Because I vaguely remember you having this cute puppy crush on my sister when we were kids."

"That was when we were little," I muttered.

Lance glared at me some more. I let out a long sigh. Damn it. He was fucking annoying.

"Fine!" I said, exasperated. "I like her. Ever since we were kids. I thought that I'd eventually forget what I felt for her but when I saw her again… It's-it's crazy what I feel for her, Lance." I looked at Lance whose gaze turned thoughtful. "Are you really okay with me dating your little sister?"

"Hell, yeah. But mark my words, Blacke," he said threateningly. "Hurt my sister and I'll kill you."

"Sheesh, man. Violence isn't the answer to everything." I said casually but I felt really relieved inside. I know that Lance approved but I need to hear him say it out loud. "And I've waited 5 years for her. Do you really think I'd hurt her?"

"Probably not," he shrugged. "I'm just saying it 'coz I want to. It might be the first and last time I get to do this. Big brother's got to act tough on the suitors, you know."

I snorted.

"You're a lame brother, my friend. And Rei thinks so too."

He laughed.

"I'm the coolest brother ever, Von. But she hates to admit that. Remember when we were 10 and she was 9?"

"Yeah," I snickered. "She was yelling to the whole neighborhood that you were the greatest brother ever in the whole wide world just because you sneaked out a tub of ice cream from the kitchen for her."

"She's still a sucker for ice cream." He grinned, wagging his eyebrows. "I could get her to do anything because of it."

I snorted. As if I would resort to bribing her ice cream just to get her to date me. On second thought… Hmm.


Rei's POV

A week passed and I didn't get to see Von much because I was hell-bent on ignoring him. I didn't want him to be near me because these crazy butterflies in my stomach kept fluttering whenever I caught a glimpse of him and I didn't want to know how these butterflies would act if he were actually beside me.

I sat with my new friends during lunchtime everyday. They were totally fun to be around. Nick and Allen kept bickering almost everyday, much to our amusement. One time, they made us choose which of them had bigger muscles. Kate and I voted for Nick while Selena and her boyfriend, Kevin, voted for Allen. Carl wouldn't vote. He said real men had muscles not scrawny, little boys like them. It was an impasse and they were not too happy about it. Instead of arguing, they badgered Carl to make a vote, even bribing him with money and food but Carl wouldn't budge at all.

Lance kept inviting me to go to the skate park with them. I made up lots of excuses, and even hid from him but it was hard since we lived in the same house. He also kept asking me to forgive Von for being a jerk but of course I wouldn't. He didn't even apologize! And ever since that day, he didn't try to approach me at all.

It was Saturday and I lazed on my bed, reading a chick book. I didn't plan to get up until Lance slammed the door open. I noticed that he was holding his skateboard with one hand as he marched towards me.

"Evaporate, Lance," I muttered, waving one hand before flipping a page.

"Get your butt off the bed, princess," he said in a no nonsense tone.

I ignored him. I heard him sigh loudly and I smirked to myself, thinking I'd won. But suddenly, he grabbed my book and tossed it aside, ignoring my shrieks of protests. He yanked me up and pushed me towards the direction of my bathroom. "I'll give you 30 minutes to pretty up or else I'll dunk your head down the toilet."

I definitely hated him right there and then. I gave him a dirty glare, which he returned with a smug smile. But I didn't have much choice and I couldn't get mom or dad to help me since they were out. So I did as I was told and an hour later, we were out of the house and driving to the skate park, even if it was just a few blocks away. Maybe because he knew that I would try to run and hide from him the minute we were outside. Damn it.

I was scowling as I looked out the window, trying to ignore Lance who was trying to placate me.

"Oh, come on," Lance said with a sigh. "You definitely need to go out sometimes, Rei. Locking yourself in your room is close to insanity."

I still didn't speak to him. A full minute passed before he spoke.

"I'll buy you ice cream."

I scowled and turned to him. "What do you think of me? A five-year old kid? You think bribing me with ice cream is going to make me forgive you for being a jerk like your douche bag friends?"

"A whole gallon?" he said, ignoring the fact that I just insulted him.

"Deal," I quickly said before he changed his mind.

Hey, it was a whole gallon. Mom had banned ice cream in the house because I was such a pig as far as ice cream was concerned and she didn't want me to become fat and ugly. Her words, not mine.

"And would you please try to be nice to my douche bag friends?" he asked hesitantly as he parked the car.

I narrowed my eyes at him.

"You're asking too much, Lance," I growled at him.

He looked crestfallen that I felt guilty instantly. I thought it over. He just said that I had to be nice. He didn't say anything about talking to them, or being friends with them. I guess I could deal being nice.

"Fine," I grumbled grudgingly.

He brightened and gave me a one-arm hug. We got out of the car and slowly walked over to his friends. I immediately spotted Von and the crazy butterflies began their fluttering again.

"It better be a whole gallon, Lance," I muttered through gritted teeth. "It damn better be."