Author's Note: Here's chapter 11. I'm on a roll tonight!

Chapter Eleven: The Finishing Touches

"Oops." Xander said that morning with a chuckle as he examined the spot on my neck. Apparently he hadn't even noticed he'd done it until I mentioned mom my seeing it the night before. Oh, it was a long night.

After my mother yelled about my neck, my father entered the room and they took turns scolding me for it. Then lecturing for an hour before I was finally given my punishment. I wasn't allowed to go to Xander's house the rest of the week and if we had to work on our project, it had to be under her supervision. He also wasn't allowed to drive me to or from school for a while.

"I can't believe they allowed this to happen," My mother had said as she started complaining about his parents. "Do they even pay attention to you while you're in their home?"

"Mom, this didn't happen at the house." It could have been the truth. I didn't remember when it had happened. "It happened in the car. It's actually why I was late. We were kissing in the car when he took me home. I'm sorry. We were only working on the essay when I was at his house." That part was a lie. But if she knew we were in his room making out, she would never have let me back over. She looked like she was deciding whether or not to believe me but finally moved on. They finished their lecturing and sent me to bed. I had to, however, endure more lectures on being too young for sex when she took me to school that morning. I had to remind her again that I wasn't having sex and it was just a hickey.

"Sorry I got you in trouble," Xander said, still laughing as he stroked a thumb over the small mark he'd left. He seemed a little smug as he gazed at it. "I really hadn't meant to do that. I got kind of carried away yesterday." I grinned at him.

"Kind of?" He rolled his eyes and pulled me in for a kiss.

"Aww, how cute." I looked up just in time to see Aurora smacking Kristen's arm for interrupting us. Xander wrapped his arms around me and listened to me explain my punishment to my friends. He couldn't keep the smirk off his face. "Wow, Elena's first hickey. I'm so proud." Kristen said as she brushed my hair aside. Xander couldn't hold back his laugh.

"Oh shut up. Both of you." They all chuckled at the blush spreading across my cheeks. Thankfully the bell rang for us to go to class and Xander walked me with his arm around my shoulders. I even got a peck on the cheek before he walked away from me.

Later, during lunch, I was grilled on everything that happened.

"I thought you were making him sweat. I don't know what you thought that meant, but that wasn't it." Aurora teased and I chuckled.

"I had meant to, but he….well, he's a good kisser. And he's really hard to resist." I explained, my face going red.

"How far did you get? Like base wise?" Kristen demanded. I chewed on my lip.

"I don't know bases." She rolled her eyes.

"Have I taught you nothing?"

"Ok, well, we kissed…a lot. It got really heavy, he had his hands all over me, but it stayed over the shirt. Well, until we got to the car." Their eyes went wide and I blushed. "It was only over the bra. And by the way, yes Kristen, I appreciate you making me get new ones."

"So when did the hickey happen?" Aurora asked.

"I'm not really sure. He was on my neck a lot and I was little too out of it to notice was he was doing." I doubted my face was ever going to be a normal color again. We went on like that throughout lunch where they would question everything we did and laugh when I would get embarrassed.

"So, is your mom gonna let us hang out today?" Xander asked as we walked outside hand in hand.

"Only if we're working on our essay and only at my house. And we finished the essay yesterday."

"She doesn't need to know that. Besides, we still have lines to rehearse." He winked at me. I noticed my mom's car waiting and saw her watching us.

"I've got to go. I'll text you later if she says you can come over." He nodded and dipped his head for a quick kiss. I wished it could have been more but I knew my mom would have a field day if he lingered too long.

"How was school?" She asked, sounding very uninterested.

"It was fine I guess. We found out we'll be performing next Tuesday. I'm kind of nervous. Xander says I just need to work on our lines a little more to feel comfortable." She nodded in agreement.

"Maybe you could try performing for someone else first. I could watch if that would help." I chewed on my lip as I imagined it. Wouldn't it be awkward after last night?

"Sure, I guess we could do that. Today maybe?" I was probably pushing my luck but I had to try.

"Elena, you're grounded." She didn't need to remind me.

"But you said he could come over to work on our project." She pursed her lips when she realized I was right.

"Alright I suppose. But if he doesn't behave, you won't be able to see him for two weeks. English assignment or not." I nodded and texted Xander.

I was really nervous when I heard the doorbell ring an hour later. I didn't know how my mom would act towards him after what had happened. I tried to beat her to the door but she was on top of it.

"Hello Xander," She greeted him casually. I bit my lip, waiting for her to scold him or slam the door in his face.

"Hello Mrs. Ortega." He said politely as she gestured him inside. I looked him over and noticed he was wearing a black and grey stripped button up. It was left open with a tshirt underneath but it was obvious he was trying to dress a little nicer to impress my mom. I wasn't sure if it was working or not but I didn't care. It looked ridiculously good on him. It was unfair how hot he could look with so little effort.

He glanced at me then and smirked, obviously taking in the lust in my eyes. I tried my best to clear my head before my mother could notice. I walked forward and took his hand, leading him into the living room. Thankfully my mom didn't follow. She was preparing dinner for tonight so she would be busy for a little while.

"Hey beautiful." Xander whispered as he kissed me. He pulled me flush against his body and held me there for a long moment before pulling away. I knew it was hard for him but with my mom in the other room, it was too risky.

We started trying to go through our lines without having to pull out our scripts but ended up needing to help each other through it a couple times before we got it. I knew I could do this in front of him but I doubted I would be able to in front of our class. I was really nervous about next week.

Eventually my mom did join us in the living room, pursing her lips at our close proximity on the couch but didn't comment. We went through it again with her in the room and I blushed the whole way through. We ended up basically editing our essay which was mostly just me writing in a prettier font. But at least he was there.

The next couple of days he wasn't allowed over because it was made obvious that we had finished our work and we had our lines memorized perfectly. It was kind of a pain to only see him at school where we couldn't really be together. I spent every night reliving the day I got grounded and it only made me want him more. I wasn't even sure when she was going to let me see him again. Finally Tuesday came around. I was feeling confident because we'd gotten our essay scores back and we got a 98 on it. Xander joked and said his mom would probably put it on the fridge. He didn't care too much for school usually.

As we listened to the other couples in the room, I felt nervous. Xander held my hands the whole class to keep them from shaking. When it was finally our turn I had a huge knot in my stomach. He had said we were lucky to have an early part in the play. That way we'd be able to get it over with sooner. He was probably right.

My hands shook the whole time we stood in front of the class but I somehow made it through without a mistake. Xander winked when we finished and the class was applauding. Finally, after days of worrying about it, I felt like I could breathe.

"Ah, finally." Xander said as we walked out of class. I laughed as stretched his arms over his head like he was suddenly free. "Now we can stop worrying about that dumb play and get back to doing what we enjoy." He said, pulling me against him to kiss. I chuckled.

"That's why you're glad it's over. Because now I can't distract you?" I raised an eyebrow and he grinned.

"Yeah, what's your excuse gonna be now?" He waggled his eyebrows and started kissing my neck.

"Mr. Booth, that's not very appropriate during school hours. Please wait until after school to maul Miss. Ortega." Mr. Davis said as he walked passed us. I flushed red.

"Sorry Mr. Davis. Won't happen again." Xander said while laughing. I knew for a fact he was lying. "Come on, I'll walk to class."

After school I told my mom about our high grades on both the essay and performance and she was pleased. Pleased enough that she took off the restrictions and allowed Xander to come over for dinner that night. It was just the three of us since my dad was working late again. I was quiet throughout dinner.

"I'm very impressed with how hard you two worked on this assignment." She commented as we ate. Xander kept the conversation flowing with her and bragged about how we were the best to perform. I wasn't sure if it was true but she ate it up. "So, will you be picking Elena up in the morning?"

"Of course I will." He smiled at me and I forced a smile back. When he had to leave, I walked him to his car where he wrapped me in his arms. "What's wrong baby? You've been quiet all night. Shouldn't you be happy?"

"I am. I'm just tired I guess." He stared at me for a long moment.

"Does this have to do with your dad?" He asked, always more observant than I give him credit for. "What did he do that's always got you so upset? He seems like an ok guy." I scoffed.

"Yeah, when he's not sleeping with his secretary." He looked at me surprised. "Yeah, I know. How cliché right?"

"Lena, I'm sorry. I didn't realize—"

"Don't worry about it. My mom doesn't know. Or she's really good at pretending everything's ok. I'm not sure which." I ran my hand through my hair. He was quiet before he took my face in his hands.

"Baby, I'm sorry your dad is an asshole. But I promise never to be like him, ok?" I nodded and he kissed me. "Good night Elena."

I tried to believe what he said but I kept thinking about Chelsea and how he let her hang all over him. What if that didn't change even though we were together? What if he went back to her when he got bored of me? I couldn't stop the what if's. Sleep didn't come easily that night.

A/N: So the project's finally over. What will they do with their time now? ;) Review!