A/N: Happy New Year everyone!

An enormous thanks to Its. Not. Me. Its. You. , LoStInMyTeArS, Kristine, Millie, EdwardCullenForever1997, GlimmerFall, Melaye, Only4Miken, ignorantME, no-ones-puppet, brookeworm, EmmaWoodhouse88, Mary Freda, irrevicably in love, roseamor, That Weird Cat Lady, fullybooked, Into the Sunshine, LoVe~NeVa~DiEs, AnnabelLloyd97, BiggerThanLove, dream. Beautiful, miaaa-. , and xDropDead for reviewing the last chapter!


Second Best

"C'mon, you can't just stay at home and brood Kristen."

"I'm not brooding." I shot back, glaring daggers at Hayven from across the room.

"Then what would you call it?" Hayven asked, raising an eyebrow.

I flipped him off, knowing there was no way I could answer that question without making myself look completely pathetic. "Oh, fuck off."

It had been about a week since Reed left, and I was doing the best I could to cope. It wasn't as if I was sitting around bawling my eyes out twenty four seven, complaining that my life was over. I just didn't feel up to the same shit Hayven and I normally pulled.

"You do realize it's 4 p.m. and your still in your fucking robe, right?" Hayven asked, his eyes appraising me as I stood in my doorway.

"And your point is?" I snapped, pulling my robe a little tighter around me.

"Well, unless that's all you're wearing." Hayven said, a suggestive smile on his lip. "I'd strongly advise that you change. Unless you want to go parading around the neighborhood in you pajamas, that is."

I narrowed my eyes at Hayven, contemplating slamming the door in his face. "Hayven, I told you, I'm not ready-"

"Kristen, your leaving this house tonight, one way or another. I don't care if I have to fucking carry you out. Actually, I'd prefer it that way."

I glared up at him, knowing that if I just slammed the door in his face he would keep ringing the doorbell till one of my parents let him in.

"Ugh. Fine. Just let me get dressed." I mumbled, turning away from him and trudging up the stairs.

Twenty minutes, I'd dressed, brushed my teeth, and made my way back downstairs, greeting Hayven with a sarcastic smile.

"Fine, I'm dressed. Now will you tell me where we're going?"

Hayven pushed himself up off the wall he'd been leaning against, a lazy smile spreading across his lips.

"You'll see soon enough. Trust me, though, you'll like it."

"Highly doubtful." I mumbled under my breath, following Hayven out to the car waiting in front of my house. Dillon was in the driver's seat and Ben in the passenger's, both dawning impish grins as Hayven and I slid into the back seat.

"Well, look who's up." Dillon joked, glancing back at me as he pulled the car away from the curve.

"Oh shove it." I said, kicking the back of his seat and crossing my arms in front of him. I supposed I should have been grateful that they cared enough to make an effort and involve me in whatever they were doing despite the fact that I seemed to be in total bitch mode, but right now the only thing that really sounded appealing was a carton of Ben and Jerry's and a couple hours of 'The Titanic',

God. Had I really become that girl? Maybe it was a good thing I was getting out of the house after all.

Glancing around, I frowned slightly, realizing we were in Liz and Quinn's neighborhood. I recognized it from the few times I'd hung out at Liz's. Still, though, it didn't make sense for us to be here now, with Liz gone and all.

As far as Quinn, well, none of us were exactly sure what had happened to him. Reed had called at some point to tell us Quinn was the one that had snitched on us and tipped the cops off, but we hadn't seen him since.

"You ready?" Hayven asked, turning to me with a roguish grin.

"For what?"

Hayven exchanged glances with Ben and Dillon, each of them nodding their head. "Payback."

"Alright." I said, surprised by the enthusiasm in my voice as I leaned forward. "I'm game. What do you guys have planned?"

"Well," Hayven began, "We were thinking, we don't know where the fuck he is, but we do know where is nice little Porsche is."

I glanced over at the shiny red Porsche parked out in front of Quinn's house. He'd treated the thing like it was fucking gold, washing it every weekend and flipping a bitch if another student so much as brushed up against it at school. It had been there ever since we'd gotten back, despite Quinn's absence.

Reaching under his seat, Ben pulled out an arsenal of tools we'd need to get the job done, ranging from good old fashioned eggs to some bright pink spray paint.

"We figured we'd put our own personal touch on it." Hayven added, smirking. "To help him out, you know. His taste has always been on the dull side."

The four of us snickered, ducking a little lower in the car and glancing around.

"We're not going to do this now, are we?" I asked, realizing it was still light out. "I mean, shouldn't we at least wait till nightfall."

"Are you forgetting where we are?" Ben asked, motioning around with his hand. "This is the best time to strike. We're in the rich part of town, which means they all probably have jobs and are still working or on their way home. We'd have to wait till midnight if we don't do it now, and Dillon and I can't be out that late, seeing as our parents have gotten all strict and about where we are after dark after the little running away stunt we tried to pull."

I nodded, drawing in a slow breath. This was going to be fucking gutsy, striking in broad daylight. A part of me, though, felt like I needed this, like an addict needs a hit. I needed to know I could have fun, that I could be happy and do the same stuff I'd always done, without Reed.

"Alright." I nodded, determination making my voice sound more confident than I felt. "Let's do this."

Hayven was the first one to get out, going up and ringing Quinn's doorbell just to make sure no one was home. Soon after, the three of us followed, Dillon and Ben serving as lookouts while Hayven and I went to work. We'd parked Ben's car at an angle so that we at least had some coverage, but we had to work fast, knowing we'd all be busted if anyone even so much as drove by.

Hayven was in charge of spray painting and flattening the tires, while I keyed the Porsche and added some finishing touches with a few raw eggs. We wouldn't risk breaking the windows out or denting the car, that would make too much noise.

Slowly, I could feel all the emotions I'd been holding back make their way to the surface, taking my anger out on the car. The night after Reed had left, I'd pretty much gone numb. Which was fine with me. Numb was alright. It was safe. Safer than any other emotion.

Now, though, I could feel the anger bubbling over, no longer something I could simply bury. Before I knew what I was doing, I'd begun slamming the screw driver I'd been using to key the car as hard as I could against its sides and windows, needing to break something, anything. Before I could do any real damage, though, I felt Hayven grab a hold of my wrists.

"Hey, Kristen, chill. I think maybe you're getting a little too into this."

I took a few deep breaths to clear my head before easing up and stepping away from the car.

"Yeah, you're right. I'm sorry…I just-"

"Fuck! Everyone split, they're home!" I heard Dillon yell, turning just in time to catch the sight of headlights heading down the street.

My adrenaline rushing, I barely had time to realize what I was doing before taking off in a dead run. The care was too far away for Hayven and I to make it in time. Instead, we ran in the opposite direction, pushing open the latched door to the wooden fence in Quinn's backyard.

Stumbling forward, Hayven and I looked around frantically, knowing we probably had a matter of seconds to find some sort of hiding place. There was nothing in his backyard that would provide us any sort of cover, nothing except…

"How long can you hold your breath?"

My gaze drifted between Hayven and the pool.

"I guess we'll have to find out." I said, the sound of Quinn's parent's frantic voices filling the air as they spotted the damage we'd done out front. They had one of those pools that was built into the ground, that extended down for about twenty feet. The sun was just setting below the horizon, which meant with any luck, it would be dark by the time the cops got here, dark enough so that they wouldn't see us below the water.

We had no other choice, really. The only way out was the way we came in, and his parents would spot us if we made a run for it. The wooden fence surrounding the area was way too high to jump.

"Hayven, I'm going to fucking kill you." I hissed, drawing back reflexively as I felt the cool of the water against my skin. I had been cold outside alone, without adding the water to the mix.

"Yeah," Hayven said, glancing over his shoulder. "Well your gonna have to wait, 'cause in a few seconds were going to have company."

Bracing myself, I took one last breath before silently slipping into the water. The cold was overwhelming, almost mind numbing as I submerged myself in the pool alongside Hayven. We could barely hear the voices of Quinn's parents in the backyard, their words mottled by the barrier of water between us, becoming nothing more than indistinguishable sounds. We had no way of knowing whether or not they'd left the backyard, they could've just stopped speaking.

Finally, though, we both had to resurface for air. Poking my head up above the water, I let out a sigh of relief amidst my ragged breathing as I realized Hayven if I were alone in the backyard. We could hear Quinn's parents talking to someone out front, presumably the cops.

"Holy fucking shit." I said, trying to quiet myself as I held back a shiver. "I can't believe we're hiding out in Quinn's fucking pool. This is crazy. You know my parents are gonna flip a bitch when I come home all drenched with my skin pruned and shit-"

"Your smiling."

I blinked, shaking my head. "What?"

"You're smiling." He repeated, a triumphant smile on his lips.

I realized, surprisingly, that he was right. I was smiling, the first real time I'd smiled since Reed had left.

"You know." Hayven said through chattering teeth. "This isn't so bad, really. I mean, a lot of my daydream about you start off like this. We're both in a pool like this, minus the clothes and the cold and shit."

I stifled a laugh, rolling my eyes at him. God, he was hopeless, not that I really minded. Being rejected by my best friend might have really fucked with my ego if I didn't have Hayven here to hit on me twenty four seven.

"Yeah, and I'm betting they also didn't involve hiding out from the cops in someone's back yard!"

Hayven shook his head, a roguish smile playing across his face. "Actually, sometimes they did. You know, sex is twice as much fun when you do it somewhere you can get caught."

I couldn't help but smile, shaking my head. Pausing for a minute, I glanced over at him, my voice softening slightly.

"Thanks, Hayven. For this, I mean."

Hayven turned to me, a curious, almost amused expression on his face. "Getting you trapped in someone's backyard hiding out in their pool? Yeah, sure. Anytime."

I rolled my eyes, shooting him a playful glare.

"You know what I mean." If it weren't for Hayven, I'd probably still be back at home, a couple pounds heavier from all the ice cream I'd managed to scarf down, sobbing over some random chick flick.

Something flashed in Hayven's eyes. "Well, it wasn't for you. It was for me. I mean, I hate to ruin this whole night and shining armor image you have of me," he joked, "but it was really just me being selfish."

"Huh?"

"You're a real fucking downer to hang around with when you're depressed, Krissy. It was kind of killing my sex life. You know Tiffany Hendricks called me last night to hang out and I turned her down. I mean, seriously. What the fuck? She was a sure thing, and I didn't even feel like hauling my ass out of bed to pick her up. If I kept that shit up much longer, my rep was gonna take a serious it."

I snorted, raising an eyebrow. Hayven really was legendary around the school for his sexual escapades. "So why didn't you just go find someone else to chill with?"

Hayven shrugged. "You know how fucking lazy I am. It would take way too much effort to find someone willing to put up with all my shit like you do."

My eyes lingered on Hayven a moment longer before I turned my attention back to whatever was going on in the front yard. Hayven was a lot of things, not all of them good, but I knew one thing for sure; I could always count on him to be there for me , even if he did have to mask his true intentions with some bullshit.


By the time the cops had left and Quin's parents had gone inside, we were both cold as hell. My hair was frozen, my movements stiff and awkward from being so cold for so long. Hayven wasn't fairing much better, his lips a sickly blue color, his dirty blonde hair frozen and covered in a sheet of white crystals.

Finally, though, we saw the last light in their house go out, the sign Hayven and I had been waiting for.

"Alright, c'mon. Lets get the fuck out of here." Hayven said, scrambling out of the pool and crawling to his feet. Trying to do the same, I found that I couldn't, biting back a sigh of frustration. My hands were too cold to grip the edge of the pool properly, my motions to stiff for me to lift myself up.

"Fuck." I muttered through chattering teeth, clawing at the side of the pool in vain.

"Here." Hayven said, grabbing a hold of my hands. After a few tries, he was able to get me out, the two of us moving as fast as we could out of Quinn's backyard and down the street. Rounding the corner, we both let out sighs of relief as we spotted Dillon's car parked down the street. They'd apparently waited for us, figuring we'd make a run for it eventually, though now they were both fast asleep.

"Warmth." I groaned, knocking on the car windows.

"Wake up, you lucky fucking bastards!" Hayven hissed, equally desperate for any sort of warmth.

Dillon came to first, followed shortly after by Ben, the two both moving to unlock the car. Climbing into the back seat, the warmth from the car almost seemed to burn in contrast to the cold Hayven and I had been forced to endure for the past couple of hours.

"Jesus fucking Christ." Ben said, looking back at us. "You both look like shit. What the hell happened to you two?"

Hayven and I exchanged glances.

"Let's just say we got a lot more fucking acquainted with Quinn's backyard." Hayven muttered.

Nodding, I glanced at the clock, too tired to elaborate. Good, it was only nine. I had an hour till I had to be home.

Making the rounds, Dillon dropped Ben off at his hours first, then Hayven shortly after, and finally arrived at mine. When we pulled up, though, he turned to me, a sheepish grin on his face.

"So…."

I raised an eyebrow. "What's that look for?"

"Nothing, it's just…" Dillon paused for a moment, as if debating whether or not to say whatever was on his mind. "Did you two do it?"

I blinked, taken aback. "What?"

"You and Hayven, did you two do it?"

"Why would we…what the fuck, Dillon?" I said, confusion mixing with annoyance as I glanced over at him.

"Well, see, Ben and I have this bet as to how long it's gonna be before you two fuck. I mean, Hayven's just a straight up manwhore, and with you on the rebound from Reed and all-"

"Oh my fucking god. Are you serious?" I asked, unable to hold back the anger in my voice. "What? You think because I can't screw Reed I'm going to fuck the next best thing?"

"The next best thing?"

Fuck. Had I really just said that? Cursing inwardly, I opened the car door, refusing to continue this conversation.

"Whatever, Dillon. Thanks for the ride." I muttered, not waiting for a response as I made my way up the walkway to my house.

God. What the hell had I just said? That had been wrong on so many levels. Comparing Hayven and Reed, pretty much inferring Reed was better than Hayven, and dissing Dillon and Ben in the process.

I needed to stop this. Really. I was pushing away my friend, lashing out on the people who hadn't abandoned me, and holding onto someone that had long since forgotten me.

A/N: So, reactions to the chapter? I'm going to go back and edit it later today. I'm just to tired to do it right now xD