*pops out of box* Hello! This chapter is for GingaNinja, who made my day the other day. Also, many thanks to violet-chi, disney_is_hardcore, zeekyboogydoog, and loella for reviewing! You don't know how much it means, seriously.
Sorry this took so long to get up.
We didn't say anything for a while, just walked along in relative silence through the light snowfall. Occasionally our elbows would knock and or we'd catch each other's eye and smile. A pit was forming in my stomach, alternating between squishy warm and icy cold. I kept thinking of Liam, who didn't know where I was currently, and felt frozen. But then Teagan would smile and I'd feel warm again. Uncaring.
This boy was dangerous, I could feel it in my bones.
It was slow going through the cold wind, but eventually we made it to the McDonalds, all bright and lit up in the surrounding darkness. I noticed there wasn't another soul around, not even a single passing car through the usually busy intersection. It made me feel all the more closer to Teagan, who looked down and smiled at me. I smiled back briefly before laughing and racing to the front door of the restaurant, a suddenly good mood settling over me.
"Hey, wait!" Teagan yelled, running after me – but of course I was too fast for him. Racing up to the door, I threw my weight against the metal bar expecting the go flying through and declare my victory of our small race – however, the door was locked and I slammed hard into the glass.
"Oww, fuck" I mumbled, peeling myself from the door. That was when I heard the crunches of Teagan's footsteps through the snow behind me and my eyes shot open in horror.
"What the-" was all Teagan had time to say before crashing into me against the glass.
"Owwwww" we both moaned in unison, though I think I received most of the damage being stuffed between the door and Teagan. Letting out a choked breath of air, I rested my forehead on the glass of the door.
"Are you okay?" Teagan asked and I realized he was flush against me. Both of his hands were resting on the metal bar on either side of me and his chest was lightly pressed against my back. When he spoke, his breath was hot on my ear.
"Umm, yeah…" I said, pushing myself away from the door and consequently away from Teagan. "I'm fine." My heart was starting to pound and my face was burning up, not exactly something I wanted him to notice.
"Sorry about that," he laughed lightly, rubbing the back of his neck. "I didn't know you were going to stop."
"Well, me either. The door is locked." I pointed out blankly, staring at the ground and wishing my heart would still. All that from a little contact?
"Yeah, you're right. Hmm." He said, turning back to face the door. "Oh hey, there's someone in there."
Sure enough, when I look up I see a dorky teenage kid with lots of acne blatantly staring at us from a booth in the middle of the restaurant. Instantly my face goes red again and I facepalm. He had to have seen what just happened between me and Teagan.
"I think he said it's drive-thru only right now." Teagan said, turning back to me.
"Oh," I mumble, feeling entirely embarrassed and wondering if it would have maybe been better to stay on Liam's roof.
"Come on," Teagan smiled, grabbing my hand in one swift motion and leading the way around the McDonalds towards the drive-thru part.
At this point I'm not sure my face can get any more red, so I just keep my head to the ground so I can hide behind my bangs and pull my hood up. Teagan doesn't seem to notice as we round the corner and stand at the little order box by the outside menu.
"What do you want to eat?" He asks, squeezing my hand and studying the lit up board.
"Uh-" I start, choking on my words as Teagan's hand keeps mine warm. Oh god. "Uh.. just a cheeseburger I guess." I keep my eyes glued to the ground, trying not to pass out from my erratic heartbeat. I feel light headed as it thumps wildly in my chest. I wonder if Teagan notices.
It then dully occurs to me that we aren't in a car, but we're in the car drive-thru. "Umm, Teagan, are you sure this will work?" I ask, trying not to fall over.
He smiles down at me and nods, "Yeah, sure it will. That kid just needs to get up and come take our order." He says confidently. I warily eye the order box, not completely sure if our order will be taken or not since we aren't in a car.
A voice suddenly erupts from the box seconds later though, and I arch an eyebrow. Teagan seems to order one of everything off the menu and I sink deeper into my daze.
"That'll be $27.52, sir." The voice drones from the box, and both my eyebrows shoot up.
"What the fuck did you order?" I stare up at him disbelievingly as we walk around to the window and Teagan lets go of my hand to fish his wallet out of his pocket. Instantly I miss the warmth but my face can't get anymore red than it is right now so I just stuff my hands in my pockets.
The kid that answers the window is the same one that saw us slam into the door. I try to covertly stand behind Teagan but the kid keeps peering and staring at me. I try to think if I know him or something, but I don't. After Teagan pays and we start walking towards the next window, the kid pokes his head out and asks, "Winter?" Thank god Teagan didn't hear him and keeps walking ahead.
"How do you know my name?" I ask in a quiet whisper, trying to edge my way towards Teagan who is halfway to the next window.
The kid smirks and asks, "Where's Liam?"
At that, my heartbeat stops and the icy pit again forms in my stomach. How did this kid know me? Did he know Liam? Would he tell Liam I was out with someone other than him? Did he just know me from the internet? The questions in my head and the fear of being found by Liam again made my feet frozen to the ground.
"Winter?" I heard, vaguely. "Hey, what's wrong?" Teagan had walked back towards me, food in hand, and gently put a hand on my back.
The kid at the window winked at me before leaning back inside and closing the door. I swallowed and forced a smile, "N-nothing."
Teagan was giving me a questioning look, so I smiled brighter and took one of the bags from his hand. "So what are we doing now?" I asked, starting to walk back towards the intersection. I just wanted to block that creeper guy from my mind.
"Oh, well, hang on." Teagan replied, digging his phone from his pocket. He pressed a few times on the screen before he put it to his ear. "Hey, it's me." Smiling at me, he adds "I've got Winter with me, too." His smile grows at whatever the person on the other end says. "Well, hey, come pick us up. It's too fucking cold out here to be walking around."
I shuffle my feet in the snow while he talks and watch as my breath turns to wispy fog before disappearing in the dark. Philip picks this time to wake up, and suddenly my stomach is wrought with pain and grumbles. I turn away from Teagan so he won't see the slight wince on my face or my hands clutching my stomach through my coats.
"Okay, see you soon." Teagan says as he hangs up and puts his phone back in his pocket. "They're just around the corner, apparently they thought we were taking too long and were coming to get us anyway," he says lightly, a laugh in his voice.
I nod, not really able to say anything through my clenched teeth, and continue to not face him. My hopes of him not noticing my pain are squashed though when he walks around to face me. I stare at the ground for lack of any better options.
"Hey, are you sure you're okay?" He says, bringing a finger under my chin and tilting it up so that I have to look at him.
I try to weakly smile but the pain in my stomach practically doubles and a tear streaks down my face as I clutch my stomach harder with my free hand. I want to crumble up and die, but I can't let Teagan see me like this. I stay standing even though it takes everything in me not to just collapse.
"What's wrong?" Teagan whispers, his thumb reaching up to wipe the tear on my cheek away. His eyes look pained as he studied my face, searching for something.
At that moment a car horn honks from the road next to us and we're both jarred from our positions. Teagan's hand left my face and I embarrassingly try to recover, pulling my hood down as far as it would go over my head.
The car pulls up next to us and Teagan opens the backseat door, ushering me in with his other hand. I clutch the bag of food and timidly crawl inside, sliding to the other side so Teagan can get in too. Once I'm seated I'm met with a mop of bright pink hair and a huge smile.
"Hey there, gorgeous!" Arie grins, twisting around in her seat to look at me.
I wiped away the tears from my eyes before I got in, but I'm sure I still look like shit and not at all gorgeous. I smile at her anyway. She seems nice.
Arie turns her attention to Teagan and hastily grabs one of the bags of food from him before turning back around in her seat and going through it. "Thank God, I was starving! You left like five hours ago to get this stuff!"
"Fatty. And it was only an hour ago that I left." Teagan claims, throwing a fry at the back of Arie's head. "Also, if you had just driven yourself here, it would have only taken like ten minutes."
Arie humphs as she takes a huge bite into her cheeseburger. "What can I schay? I'm lazy," she says through a mouth full of burger.
"Yes, we know." Says Kai from the driver's seat, rolling his eyes. He turns around and looks at me, an easy smile on his face, and says "Hey."
I quietly nod and he turns back around, pulling out of the McDonald's parking lot.
"So where are we going?" I ask softly, nudging Teagan in the ribs with my elbow.
He's stuffed his mouth with fries, but mumbled through them anyway, making me simultaneously grossed out and amused. "You'll see." He grins.
I eye him warily and ask, "You're not planning on kidnapping and killing me, are you?"
"Naaah," he says easily. "Not yet at least."
He smirks at my widened eyes and knocks his knee against mine. I gasp at the tingle of butterflies throughout my system. I feel electric.
Phillip doesn't approve though and my stomach rumbles.
"Oh! Here." Teagan says, handing me the bag of assorted McDonald's foods. "Eat anything you want, I got plenty. There should be a cheeseburger in there somewhere."
My stomach growls louder as I take the bag and start to sort through it. I feel nauseous though at the smell of the fast food, but my mouth is watering anyway. I hadn't eaten in over a day or so, and even then I'd thrown it up. Thinking about it, I couldn't actually remember the last time I ate something and didn't immediately get rid of it right after.
I selected a small cheeseburger from the bag and decided this time I wouldn't get rid of it. I swallowed the uprising fear of calories and fat as I took a small bite. Hunger instantly took over and I quickly devoured the entire thing in mere seconds.
"Wow," Teagan was looking at me, eyebrow raised. "Here have some more, you must be really hungry." He said, pushing the bag back to my side of the backseat.
Oh my god. Oh my god, he saw me eat that entire burger. Tears threatened to fall as I pushed the bag back to his side and turned to look out my window, extremely embarrassed. I clenched my eyes shut in anger at myself.
Why did I have to eat the whole thing? Why was I such a pig? Why couldn't I control myself? Why am I getting worked up over one fucking cheeseburger? Teagan is trying to be nice to me, why do I have to fuck it up? Why am I so fucked up? It's just one fucking cheeseburger! Why can't I be normal?
I press my forehead against the freezing glass of the window, and try to breathe. I feel sick. Teagan runs his hand over my back and I tense, but soon relax as he moves in soothing circles. Breathe.
I'm torn from my calming state when my phone vibrates in my pocket. Suddenly I can't breathe again as I know exactly who it is. I sit back up and glance at Teagan. His eyes are worried, but he doesn't say anything and I'm grateful he hasn't drawn attention to me as Kai and Arie bicker in the front seat.
Silently, I pull my phone from my pocket and stare at the screen. Liam's name is there over a picture of us kissing in his backyard. Teagan eyes the phone and his expression turns sour.
I feel lightheaded and frozen as I let the phone continue to vibrate, it eventually going over to voicemail. The icy pit in my stomach has returned and I feel weak, my entire body quietly shaking in fear. Almost instantly after the unanswered call, a text message lights up the screen.
"Where are you?"
I know the calm tone of the text is false and that Liam is, in fact, livid.
I take a peek at Teagan's concerned eyes. The way his hair falls in his eyes. The red tint to his frozen cheeks. The melting snowflakes in his hair. His hand on my back gives me the courage to shut off my phone. I swallow hard and stuff the thing back in my pocket. This isn't going to end well, but for right now I can pretend nothing is wrong.
I'm still shaking but I manage to give a small, genuine smile. Teagan smiles too, and for a moment I can't take my eyes off him.
"You two are awfully quiet back there." Arie notes, turning in her seat to face us. "Kai's getting boring."
Kai laughs and grabs her thigh, making Arie scream obnoxiously.
Teagan laughs too, "She's ticklish." And then eyes me with a grin.
My eyes open wide in alarm as I scoot as far as I can against the car door. It doesn't matter though, as Teagan's long arms make their way to my sides and I'm suddenly squealing like Arie.
"Stooooop!" I gasp through my laughing. Kai is laughing too, but doesn't stop even through my pleas. In my struggle to get away from him, he manages to pull me to his side of the car, locking me against his side in his strong arms.
I elbow him hard in the ribs and he 'oofs' but continues to tickle my sides. I can't control my giggling as I push against him, and when one of his hands comes near my face, I take the opportunity and bite.
"Oww!" He cries, "Did you bite me?" He looks at his hand and then at me incredulously.
I grin and elbow him again. He grins too and ruffles my hair, as my hat had fallen off in the scuffle. My sides hurt from all the laughing, but I feel good and happy, unpleasant things currently blocked from my mind.
"Finally!" Arie says, climbing out of the car, and I realize we've stopped and parked.
I look up at Teagan and also embarrassingly realize I'm practically on top of him.
"Heh, umm.." He says, letting go of me and turning his head toward the window.
I get off of him and belated realize that he'd been blushing. Oh my god.
"Come on you two!" Arie says, banging her fist on the hood of the car. I scramble to get out my door, not even sure where I am or why we've parked seemingly in the middle of nowhere.
"Umm, you aren't going to kill me now are you?" I ask Teagan, as we walk through the snow to catch up to Arie and Kai who've already made their way up a small path. The dense forest around us is a little alarming.
"Heh, no." He chuckles, his elbow bumping mine. I realize we're walking really close together and I can even feel the heat off him, but I don't move away. He's warm. "You'll see where we're going."
I decide that I trust him and keep quiet as we walk, the crunching snow under our boots and the relative silence of the forest soothing.
When we make it to the top of the hill I'm left breathless. Our entire town is spread out in the small valley before us and hundreds of lights are sparkling in the moonlight.
"Wow. It's beautiful." I breathe, enraptured by the view.
"Just like you." Teagan murmurs, so lowly that I think I must have misheard him. No, I did mishear him.
When I peek up at him, he's looking down at me with the faintest smile on his lips.
"What?" I ask, frozen to the spot.
"You don't have any gloves," he notes, after a few seconds. He proceeds to take off his right hand one and hand it to me.
"Umm," I say, a little bit confused, but put the already warm glove on my right hand anyway. I look back up at Teagan.
"Perfect," he says, taking my left hand in his. Our fingers lace together and Teagan beams, putting our combined hands in his pocket.
I stare at his pocket for a moment, dumbstruck, and then up at him. He's not looking at me though, his gaze fixed on the horizon. I guess it's a good thing though, because my face is completely red. Again. It's a little worrisome that this boy does so much to me.
He squeezes my hand in his and I look away, embarrassed and not sure what to do. His hand is warm though and I'm actually kind of grateful, because my fingers were frozen a minute ago.
I chance a glance over at Kai and Arie, who were surprisingly silent, and see that Arie is leaning against Kai. Her head was placed on his shoulder, and his head leaned against hers. I briefly wondered if they were a couple, when I let out a huge yawn.
"Sleepyhead," Teagan smirks, and I nod. I decide to fuck everything and just lean my head against his shoulder. Teagan draws in an audible breath and I freeze, thinking I'd gone too far, but he squeezes my hand and says, "Don't go to sleep yet, you'll miss the best part."
"There's something better than this?" I ask dreamily, warm against Teagan and drawing in his amazing smell.
"Look," he chuckles, nudging my head with his shoulder.
I open my eyes and sure enough the view is gradually getting more gorgeous. The sun is coming up and the sky is fading from midnight blue into brilliant reds and oranges.
"Wow," I whisper, as we stand there together, warm and watching as the sun slowly makes its way into the sky.
It's silent for a while, none of us really wanting to break the magic of the moment, but eventually Arie says, "Come on guys, I've gotta pee."
Kai laughs loudly and pushes her away from him. "Way to ruin the moment."
"The moments passed! I have to pee now! Vamos!" She declares, raising her arm and charging down the hill towards the car.
A/N – I know this is so short, and I'm really sorry! I just really, really, really wanted to get something up here today, and this is what I've got! I'm sorrryyy ._.
A new chapter should be up soon though! Liam is not happy! Angst and drama!
Please review. If you want.