Ten Seconds to Fall

Lucy doesn't know what to do with herself after graduation. That is, until she stumbles upon The 10 Second Fiesta.


9. the following days

I'd been avoiding my dad's calls and texts for a week before he decided to walk into the cafe.

"Hey, kiddo," he said as he approached the register.

"Hey, dad," I said lamely and poured him a cup of coffee.

"How've you been?" He asked.

He looked like he'd aged ten years within the past week.

"I'm okay," I lied.

In the past week, Jude had taken the sofa to let me use his bed, and every night I woke up with a nightmare. Every night, I joined him on the couch and wrapped myself in his arms to seek rest.

"I'm not," he stated, frustration clear in his voice. "I'm not okay with you being forced from your home like this. I put a deposit down on an apartment."

"Dad, you're not-"

"It's not for me, it's for you. It's still my responsibility to provide a home for you, as your father."

"No, dad, it's not anymore," I sighed. "I'm an adult, now. I have a job. If I need to get an apartment, I can-"

"Here's the key," he said and folded it into my hands. "I'll text you the address."

I gave it back to him.

"Thank you dad, but I have a place where I'm welcome to stay," I smiled, despite what I was about to say.

My mother was literally killing him. It was written in the wrinkles on his face. He was too young to look this old, only forty-three.

"Keep this key, and keep the apartment ready," I said. "There might be a day where one of us needs to move in, but right now I don't."

He closed his eyes and shoved the key in his pocket.

"I love you, kiddo," he looked like he was about to cry.

"I love you, too, dad," I swallowed on the last word.

"I have to get going," he said. "You look tired."

He pulled out his wallet and handed me a wad of bills. Always in the habit of carrying cash. My mother couldn't look up cash receipts on her bank and credit card statements.

"What's this for?" I asked.

"Go do something for yourself," he said. "Take a day off, get a massage, eat good food, and get what you need to at least be at home here. I was going to give this to you for furniture for the apartment, but that doesn't seem necessary for now."


"Take it," he smiled. "Call me when you get a chance and we'll get together for lunch soon."

"Thank you," I said. "Love you."

"Love you, too," and he left the cafe without finishing his coffee.

I shoved the bills into my pocket and slumped against the counter, exhausted.

Lew walked into the cafe, looking like she'd been up to more than just hanging out with a kid from school like she'd said she was doing. Her make up was done and she was wearing about ten bracelets in each arm. This was not a summer slumber party look. Jude may not have caught on, but I figured there was a boy involved.

"Hey," I said without moving. "What's up?"

She sighed and dropped her bag to the floor and eyed me suspiciously from where she stood, "Why do you look like a puppet with cut strings?"

"I just can't," I chuckled and pulled myself up. "Seriously, though, did you wake up like that?"

"Like what?" Lew held her arms out to look at them as if to prove she wasn't overdressed.

"Like you've just come back from a rock show," I clarified.

She rolled her eyes and grabbed her bag before running upstairs.

"You're not my mom," trailed behind her in a huffy voice.

Kali walked in next. It was a slow day when all of the customers were friends and family.

"I need you," she said and went straight into the kitchen.

She came back out with an almond croissant I had baked that morning. She shoved a ten dollar bill into the tip jar before pouring herself a cup of black coffee, then sat down at me stool behind the counter.

"What's going on?" I asked, watching as she sipped her coffee and the tension seemed to leave her.

"Max is moving to Austin," she said. "The band wants to be somewhere with a living music scene."

"Kali, that's awesome," I smiled, but I could feel that there was more to the situation.

"He asked me to move with them," she said, her eyes meeting mine with hesitation.

"You should go," I said. "You've always wanted to live in Austin."

"I don't want to leave you here," she looked back down at her coffee. "Not with the way things have developed. You know, my mom said you're still welcome to move in with them if you need to. Even after I... If I go to Austin."

"That's sweet of them, but I'm doing okay here," I hugged my arms around her shoulders as she continued to sip on her coffee. "Besides, I have Jude."

"Yes, because nothing is good for a new relationship to the test like moving in together because your mom is cuckoo."

"Hey, that's not fair," I said.

"Neither is forcing these circumstances on you, or Jude, or his sister," Kali said.

I hung my head. All I could think about was how many stupid arguments Jude and I seemed to have now that I'd moved in.

Speaking of, he walked into the cafe next and briefly waved at us before heading straight to the apartment.

"That wasn't awkward," Kali said quietly and I felt a quick jab in my chest. "I like Jude, I respect him for giving you a home right now, but you guys seem off. If you need anything, call me."

"Go to Austin," I said as she stood from the stool.

Kasey came in and took over the register, so I headed upstairs to find Jude. We needed to talk. I didn't want him to feel like I was taking advantage of our relationship or his hospitality.

When I opened the door, he looked shocked and like he was trying to hide something. Everyone was weird today.

"What'cha up to?" I asked and came towards him to kiss his cheek and try to sneak a view of what was behind his back.

He blocked me. Clever guy.

I gave up. Let him have a secret. There were bigger things to think on.

"Can we talk?" I asked.

He frowned, "Sure. Something wrong?"

"Me staying here, it's not putting too much pressure on you - on us - right? If it is, I can find another place to stay. It won't hurt my feelings if you say so," there it was. His out.

He shook his head and took my hands in his.

"I knew I should have done this sooner," he dropped his head on my shoulder and I could see the box on the kitchen island behind him, laying in the center of a square of unfolded wrapping paper. Scissors and tape and ribbon within reach of the box, but so far unused.

"Is that for me?" I asked.

He nodded his head and let me walk towards the gift.

I picked up the little box and opened it to find a key on a small ball chain.

"It's a key to the apartment. I know it's never locked, but I thought it'd be good for you to have one since I wanted to ask you to move in for good."

"I've all but kicked you out of your room," I said quietly. "We've only been dating a short time. We haven't even.. You know..."

"All valid points," he smiled. "But, I love you and I want you to feel safe and like you have a home here."

"What did you say?" I asked, my heart raging against my ribs.

"I want you to feel at-"

"No, before that."

"All valid-"

"The other thing, you dummy."

"Oh, you mean when I said that I love you?"

I spun and wrapped my arms around his neck, making him crane down to meet me in a kiss.

"I love you, too," I said when our lips parted and he smiled.

"I was banking on that."

Join MovellasFind out what all the buzz is about. Join now to start sharing your creativity and passion
Loading ...