96. Lies Lies Lies
“Hey, what's wrong?" John questions as soon as he lays eyes on me.
"Nothing. I just wanted to see you." I lie.
"You do realize I was just asking to be polite, right?" His familiar smirk claims his features. "Jeez. Considering how loud you were thinking, I'm surprised the whole town didn't hear you."
"I was annoyed." I say defensively.
"Yeah, sweetcheeks, I got that!" He laughs.
"Shut up." I moan.
"Alright, alright. I'm sorry." He pulls me into an awkward hug.
"No, it's fine. You were just being you." I close my eyes and rest my head on his chest. He tenses awkwardly, obviously not expecting the contact, but relaxes a few seconds later.
"Hey!" His chest vibrates with his laughter, causing me to smile the first genuine smile since speaking to Sara. "What's that supposed to mean?"
"Nothing." My smile grows. "Thank you."
"For what?" He asks sweetly.
"For being here for me." I mumble.
"Oh." Is the only reply he gives.
"You mean more to me than you know, John." I think strongly. When I sense his smile, it confirms he hears the thought.
"Thank you for coming to me." He replies, planting a soft kiss on my head, causing me to pull back from him. His cheeks adopt a crimson hue as I look up at him. "Sorry."
"I still love him." I blurt out.
"What?" He is understandably confused by my random exclamation.
"Sorry." Now I am the one blushing. "What I meant to say was... Even though we fight, probably more than we should do, I still love Scott."
"I know. I can feel it." He says calmly. I wonder about the lack of emotion in his tone.
"You're more than a friend, you know that. But Scott..." I sigh, trying to sum up how I feel about him. "Scott saved me when no one else could. Falling for him was so easy, and since then, as difficult as it's been, I've never stopped loving him."
"I know." He repeats.
"I don't want to hurt him, John." I take a deep breath before admitting to myself what I plan to do. "I have to tell him about us - about everything. Yes, it may hurt him, but not as badly as if I keep lying. But for us..."
"It means you'll lose me." He finishes the sentence I am not strong enough to say on my own. I nod quickly, tears brimming my eyes.
"I'm scared." I admit. I can't help feeling stupid; I've never been this vulnerable before.
"He won't find out about us. No one knows. Don't tell him, Evelyn!" He begs. "You haven't done anything wrong. We've never done anything together. That kiss... It was just a thought!"
"We both know it was more than that." I confess. "And even if it was 'just a thought', I've lied to him for months. I betrayed my teammates."
"Please, Evelyn. Don't!" He places his hands on my shoulders and looks into my eyes. "If you tell him, everything will fall apart. Do you want to lose this?" He quickly transfers to speak through our telepathic connection. "Do you really think I could let you go that easily?"
"But... If he finds out from anyone else... He'll never forgive me!" I feel the lump grow in my throat.
"I swear I won't let anyone find out. Just stay with me a little longer!" He takes my hands now, his desperation evident. Maybe we can keep it quiet. I have so many secrets already, how hard would it be to add one more to the list? It would keep everyone happy. Surely? Maybe I could just keep up with it for another week or so, until I'm ready?
"I guess I could-"
"Thank god!" John hugs me quickly, taking me by surprise.
"Oh, okay." I try to suppress the natural smile that comes with John's relief.
"Thank you. I promise you, I won't let anyone ruin this." He releases me from his embrace. Why is this so important to him?
"Okay." I say weakly. "Why couldn't you have just been an X-Man?"
"What?" His amused smile returns.
"Well, if you were part of the X-Men when we met, we wouldn't have to hide our connection." Everything would've been simpler that way.
"Hmm. Yeah, I can never see that happening. I'm no X-Man." He laughs.
"Yeah, that's pretty obvious." I reply cheekily.
"I'm not saying I couldn't stick it in that team." He snaps back quickly. "I'm just too much of a bad boy!" He winks at me.
"Of course. Nothing to do with the fact you couldn't handle our training exercises." I reply sarcastically.
"Ha! I could kick the ass of any of your teammates!" He sounds irritatingly smug once again.
"Fine." I pout. "Fight me."