Neon Gray

Ripper and Alex. Alex and Ripper. That's the way its always been. Of course, Alex is changing, wanting her own things in life. Ripper however, refuses to move on from their intwined lives and struggles to cope with independence.
Then suddenly, Ripper disappears.
There's rumours he is dead. There's rumours he's addicted to drugs. And then there's the rumour he's just plain vanished.
Alex is heartbroken. She thought she could live without Ripper. Her dad hadn't liked her being so close to a boy and wanted her to get some more girl friends. But then, Alex stumbles upon a sickening discovery.
Ripper has changed in a way which is against every law of normal.

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1. Nope. Just me.

 

    "Alex. You can't just go out with Scott. You have to make sure he's suitable..."

   I scoffed, rolling my eyes and leaning back on my elbows. The grass tickled my arms and I threw my head back so that the sun rays bounced off my face.

   "God, Rip, your worse than my dad," I grinned, my eyes closing. My sides ached from the hour of hula hooping I'd done before I'd come to the park to see Ripper. I shifted awkwardly.

   "I'm just saying, Alex," Ripper sighed. “You’ve got to be careful.” Even though his tone of voice was serious, I could detect a hint of his cheekiness there. My heart pounded. Maybe today was the day. The day he’d finally admit that he liked me-

   “Like, I fancy Rosaline like mad but you don’t see her rushing to go out with me, do you? She’s obviously weighing up her options-and she’s obviously considering the fact that I’m a total rebel, with a whole history of danger.”

   My heart cracked just that little bit more. I hated Rosaline with a passion. My eyes flashed open to glare at him. His beautiful straight black hair was plastered down onto his head. His fringe was in his liquid brown eyes. He smirked at me.

   “Ya, sure.” I rolled my eyes at him, sitting forwards. My legs automatically crossed. A daisy was just in front of me. My fingers plucked it from the grass and I absent-mindedly twirled it. The petals started falling off, landing delicately on the grass. The sun was so hot today. I could feel it on my back. The grass was warm too.

   Ripper sat up, placing himself in front of me. His eyes locked with mine. That brown was just...bliss. It was like warm chocolate. It was the colour I’d known for ten years. I still remembered the day I met him. In Primary One, I’d had this strange fascination with the Golden Time sandpit. No other child was allowed near it. The teacher once tried reasoning with me but gave up once I put sand in her water when she wasn’t looking.

   Then, Ryan Adams turned up. A shy little boy with light brown hair and golden skin. He would not speak to anyone. That first day I ignored him until he boldly sat in the sandpit when I went to the toilet. Ripper swore he could still remember that scowl I gave him. It must have been epic. I’d been tempted to through sand at him but he’d held up his palms and said, “I just want to play.” His words had seemed pretty harmless, so we decided to be friends. All through Primary school and into Academy. He’d stuck with me all this time and now here we were, in fourth year. From the mere age of five to the mature age of fifteen.

 Of course, there had been that small bump in the road. Ripper had gone into a phase where no one else in the world mattered but him. He’d been so arrogant that he’d even changed his name from Ryan to Ripper. Hardly anyone even remembered his real name anymore. Ripper had dyed his own hair the deepest black imaginable. When I’d saw it, I tried to act like it was shocking but it really showed me who Ripper really was. How good-looking he was.

   Most girls at school fawned over him. I think it’s because I was his best friend that no girl tended to like me. Either that or I was just better at getting along with the male kind.

   Suddenly, Ripper placed his long, lean, golden fingers over mine. He gently stroked the daisy. My lungs felt like they were away to burst like air bags. My eyes met his again and we just...stared.

   “No guy is good enough for you unless I say so, Alex,” Ripper whispered, leaning in close. I leant in too, bracing myself. My lids closed and my lips moved towards his.

   Fingers jammed into my sides and I jerked away, pain radiating up my sides. I screamed and kicked at Ripper. He fell to his back, chortling with laughter. I yelped and rubbed my sides, trying not to let tears burn my eyes. Ripper was barely containing himself. The grass that we’d been sitting on was flattened and more was now being crushed as he rocked from side to side, laughing far too loudly.

   “I can’t believe you!” I spat, scrambling to my feet. Ripper just ignored me and ended up giggling, face-first, into the grass. I kicked the bottom of his Converse hard, grabbed my IPhone that had fallen from my pocket and stalked away, jamming my ear buds in. They drowned out his calls but they couldn’t stop the tears falling.

   I wiped my face and carried on walking up the hill. I lived less than two minutes away from our Special Place. Our Special Place was the perfect spot. Soft and grassy. Hot yet shaded. We’d discovered it when we were ten or eleven. We’d been there nearly every day of the past five or six years, even when the snow was thick on the ground.

   He knew how much my sides hurt after hula-hooping. What a bastard. I’d get him back for that. I knew exactly where he hid all his ‘magazines’. I could easily let his sister stumble upon them-Carmen was quite keen to snitch on her twin brother.

   I scowled at nothing. The next song nearly blasted my ears off but I didn’t change it over nor turn it down. No. It was blocking out unwanted thoughts perfectly. I started to walk in time to the beat.

   My ear buds were suddenly yanked from my ears. I turned to face Ripper. His brown eyes were sparkling with noiseless laughter but his mouth was saying sorry.

   And I wasn’t buying it.

   “Rip, you can’t just play with my feelings like that.”

   Ripper stopped speaking and glanced at me in surprise. I realised what I’d said.

   “No, what I mean is...is...” But I really didn’t know what I meant.

    “How exactly was I playing with your feelings? Huh?”

    “I thought...I thought you were trying to...kiss me.” My voice got lower as it reached the end. I felt pathetic and useless. My head hung as I waited for his response. My chin was suddenly tilted up. Lips pressed softly against mine and hands tangled in my hair. I felt ridged until my muscles relaxed. Somehow, my hands found Ripper’s soft black hair and wound themselves into it. Fireworks danced behind my eyelids and Ripper’s sweet vanilla breath washed the back of my throat.

   This is what I’d been waiting for since I’d figured out I liked him in first year.

   This was it.

   And it was perfect.

   Drops of rain spattered on my shoulders-and it had been so sunny a minute ago as well-but we didn’t care. Ripper’s teeth caught my bottom lip and tugged on it slightly. He crushed his body to mine as if he couldn’t get close enough.

   Then, he pushed away. I stumbled backwards, breathing like a out of water fish. My hands caught hold of a lamppost. Catching myself, I felt the rain get heavier. Ripper was glaring at the ground, his arms tensed. I saw the slight muscles bulge beneath his tanned skin. He looked at me. Water dripped off his bottom lip-wow, the weather had altered fast. I couldn’t believe how appealing his lips looked to me now.

   “I’m...I’m sorry,” he whispered.

   “I’m not,” I replied. I was still a little bit panty but I was okay.

   “That wasn’t right.” He focused on me a little more clearly. “No...it really wasn’t. I...I need to go.”

   With that, he stumbled off into the rain, leaving me standing alone, clutching a damn lamppost.

   That was the last time I ever saw Ripper acting normal.

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