I Know You're There: Malevolent Innocence

*Conclusion to the I Know You're There trilogy* Reuben's dead. Never to return. Tori doesn't grieve, she gets on with her life. In fact, her and Damien's wedding is coming up. Sure, she loves him, but not like she loved Reuben. Everything's fine; absolutely fine. Despite the fact she cries herself to sleep, and prays for Reuben to come back every moment, everything's fine. What am I saying? It's Tori Hills, nothing's going to be fine, especially when she's about to devote her life to the wrong guy. 'I swear, if mine and Reuben's love was fire, we'd be nothing, but ash.'


15. 'Because I love you.'

It's been six months since Reuben said he wanted to marry me. The next day, he didn't mention it. Nor the day after that. Not even six months later. He didn't bring it up, and I was craving to know if he meant it, or if he was deluded by sleep. I was going crazy, but I wouldn't ask him about it, in case he forgot or something. Or maybe he felt the same as me, and wasn't sure if I'd take it seriously.

"I'm back!" Reuben shouted from the hallway.

Ecstatic, I leapt up from the spare bed, and bounded to the front door. I more or less jumped on Reuben, wrapping my legs around his waist. He'd finally gotten the casting off, and was one hundred per cent recovered. It was the first time in five and a half years, that I'd seen him uninjured. 

"Wow, nice hair," Reuben laughed, running his fingers through it.

"Hey, I just woke up," I defended myself, wrapping my arms around his neck.

"Well, I'm glad you're awake," he smiled, and lightly pecked my lips.

"Good, because otherwise, I'd go back to sleep," I joked, smiling crazily.

"Well, don't, I can finally move normally," he gently put me back on the floor, still holding me tightly against him.

I hugged him back, even tighter, knowing that I wouldn't hurt him anymore. Other than the lack of oxygen... But anyway. I buried my face in his chest, breathing in his strong scent of cinnamon, and wintery musk. It was December, closing in on Christmas, and I still hadn't talked to anyone, other than Reuben, Drake, Shane, and Raven. 

"Well, I'm out of this casting, I'm pretty healthy," he flexed his biceps, for good measure, "And I think you're ready to see your family again."

"Really!?" I squeaked, hugging him tighter.

"Yep, I feel really mean, keeping you away from them," he admitted.

"It's Drake, not you. You know he doesn't let me out without him," I laughed slightly, remembering my numerous attempts at escaping, to go to a 'lady's' appointment, but being caught.

"Well, it's eleven, he's still asleep, let's go now," he lowered his voice, our eyes locking. 

I smirked, and nodded. For a split second, Reuben let go of me, to grab Drake's car keys, but replaced his arm around my waist. Silently, we left the flat, and made our way to the ground floor. We said a quick goodbye to the receptionist, and practically jogged down to Drake's parking spot, as if he was in pursuit of us, or something. 

Laughing at nothing, we got in Drake's car, and Reuben pulled out, probably breaking the speed limit. He didn't seem to care, as we headed back down a scarily familiar route. We fell into an awkward silence, as we both thought about what was going to happen. Reuben would probably be beat, by my brother and Dad, Mum would pass out again, and they would hate me. Or would they be all for it, encouraging us? 

"Tori?" Reuben clicked his fingers in front of my face, and I jumped.

We were standing outside the front door of my parents house. When did we get there? Scowling in confusion, I let it drop, and shakily knocked on the door. Before I could blink, I was attacked into an extremely tight hug. The scent of Ollie's cologne hit me, and I briefly wondered why he wasn't at his flat, but forgot about it. 

"Tori! Thank God you're okay!" he said, practically lifting me off of the ground. 

"Ollie, of course I'm fine," I told him, trying to get him off. 

"Reuben! Thank God you're okay, too!" Ollie let go of me, and pulled Reuben into a bone-crushing hug.

Reuben and I shared a glance, that said 'what the hell?', but Reuben happily hugged Ollie back. For a few minutes, Ollie gushed over us, until he finally invited us in. They went ahead, into the kitchen, as I stared at my old home. Photos of Damien and I were dotted around, in pretty, silver frames. I picked one up, and took the back off. Underneath the photo of us, there was one of Reuben and I. Instantly, I ripped the other one up, crumbling to the floor, and put the one of Reuben and I in front.

"T-Tori?" I heard a shockingly familiar voice stutter. 

"Yeah?" I nonchalantly replied to my Dad. 

"W-what, how?" he gushed, his eyes running over me, as if I was an alien.

"Tori!?" another annoyingly familiar voice pitched in.

I spun on my heel, to see him. Damien. His hair had grown out of its style, so it was just the wavy, messy, blond hair, he had when I met him. His soft eyes were grey, glazed over in ice. Stubble framed his jaw, making him look extremely manly, plus his muscles, from hours of working out.

"What are you doing here?" I spat, folding my arms over my chest. 

"I could say the same," Damien softly replied, recoiling slightly.

"It's my parents house, now, why are you here?" I repeated, putting a good distance between us, as I didn't want to kill him.

"Ah," he guiltily hung his head, "I can't afford the house, car, and everything, without your wages, so I moved into your room."

Well, I was never ever using that room, ever again.

"Oh, would you look at that, my favourite person in the world is here," Reuben grinned, but it didn't reach his eyes.

Damien's jaw clenched, locked into place, as his eyes narrowed at Reuben. My Dad glanced between all of us, trying to place the situation into a matter of sense. I simply chewed on the inside of my cheek, awkwardly rocking on the balls of my feet. Reuben was having a pretty good staring contest with Damien, practically eye-murdering him. As for Ollie, he stood behind our Dad, pretending not to notice the awkwardness.

"Why do you hate me?" Reuben sceptically asked, eyeing Damien suspiciously.

Damien looked a little taken aback, but he quickly reacted, "Because... Because... I don't hate you!" he blurted.

"Then why did you do everything you did?!" Reuben snapped, his fists clenched by his sides. 

He breathed in deeply, his voice shaking with each word, and his voice eerily quiet, "Because I love you."

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