"Love is weird. Who knows what will happen." Luke smiled, and intertwined his finger with hers.
Rylie spent the next day doing the only thing she did best: cry. The feeling of loss still hadn't faded, even slightly. She wanted to go out, maybe hang with old friends, but the minute she got up, her head started reeling with Luke, and she would sink down in her covers again.
The entire day had flown by surprisingly, and Katie hadn't bothered her once, except to bring her some food. Katie was being so...polite about the whole situation. She hardly commented on Rylie's moping, and she was being a decent sister to care to her needs, even though Rylie was acting pathetic.
It was nearly sundown, and Rylie examined a quarter in her hand as she twirled it in her fingers, trying to get her mind off of the things that made her feel so horrible.
She jumped slightly as her door swung open, revealing Katie.
"Can't you knock?" Rylie moaned.
"It's not like you're doing anything..." Katie rolled her eyes, and looked at Rylie seriously. "You have a visitor?"
"What?" Rylie stood up in her bed, hearing the last word she expected to. She should have known someone would come to see her. It was probably Luke, and Rylie would go ballistic if it was.
"There's a boy with colored hair waiting downstairs for you." Katie answered, annoyed with Rylie's slow comprehension.
Rylie hit the side of her face with her hand, and groaned. Michael. Of course, he would find her and try to make everything right again. She didn't want visitors. As much as she appreciated Michael, she just couldn't handle anyone from the tour. If a manager had showed up, she still would've sent him away.
Rylie almost told Katie to tell him to leave, but a small part of her wanted to see him. She wanted the comfort from one of her best friends. He must have gone through a lot to find her, and the least Rylie could do was talk with him for a few minutes.
"Send him up." Rylie decided.
Katie nodded, and as soon as she closed the door, Rylie adjusted her covers, and attempted to brush out her tangled hair with her fingers. She rubbed her face, trying to relieve the redness from her tears, and took a deep breath. She still looked like a wretched beast, but at least she was prepared.
The door opened so slowly , and Rylie immediately saw black Converses, ripped skinny jeans, and a dirty muscle tee before her eyes met Michael's greenish ones.
"Hey..." he leaned against the door, and smiled, holding back his comments on her appearance.
"Hey..." Rylie bit back a smile. "How'd you find me?"
Michael closed the door behind him and walked over to the side of Rylie's bed. "It involves a lot of paparazzi, fans, walking, questions, and searching." Michael sat down, and eyed Rylie intently. "I like this house." he added, looking around her bare room.
"I don't..." Rylie admitted. "Did you bring anyone else?"
"Nope, just me. I figured you didn't want a party of people coming to see you like this."
Rylie appreciated him putting her first. He was such a kind guy, and she saw how much Luke and him were similar. They both were understanding, handsome, kind, and just genuinely amazing people.
Rylie and Michael examined their laps for minutes before Michael broke the silence.
"5 Seconds of Summer is over."
She gasped, utterly stunned. "Seriously?" She felt so sorry for them, even Luke, because she knew how much that band meant to them. It was ironic, however, that Luke went through so much trouble with her for a song that would make 5sos famous, and now they were over. Karma's a bitch.
"Yep, after everything that happened Christmas Eve, Ashton and Summer eloped. We have no idea where they went, and we can't get in contact with them." Michael sighed, and rubbed his hand against his thighs.
Rylie moved from her place at the headboard, and slid closer to Michael. "I should have known they would do something like that." she laughed a small laugh. Her life wasn't the only thing falling apart.
"And on top of that, Luke won't come out of his room. He won't eat. He won't sleep. He's heartbroken, Rylie, and guilty." Michael looked at her with a perplexing expression. "Things have gotten crazy since you left."
Rylie pictured Luke in her head: huddled in the corner, hugging his knees, rocking back and forth, crying. Serves him right. Rylie fed off that vision, but still a large part of her soul wanted to cry for him to get better, and come to her, so everything could be right in the world again. Her body wasn't processing the fact that nothing would ever get better!
"I've only been gone 2 days."
"It's a madhouse..." Michael shook his head rapidly. "One Direction had to cancel their tour. I have to go back home to Australia in a couple days. Maybe I'll work at Starbucks or something." He looked so disappointed not only in the events, but himself.
"Starbucks makes some good coffee." Rylie said, trying to lighten the mood.
"Hey, I'm Michael. Welcome to Starbucks!" Michael imitated a girl's voice. "What would you like?"
Rylie laughed for the first time in days. Her eyes crinkled as her lips lifted in a smile. She nudged Michael, and rested her head on his shoulder.
"Was that your sister?" Michael asked.
"She's...nothing like you."
"I know!" Rylie was astonished they shared the same DNA.
Michael broke apart from Rylie, and turned his body to face her. "You know where I spent Christmas? On a plane...to see you."
Rylie looked down, ashamed and she didn't know why. "I'm sorry..."
"No, don't be!" Michael spoke, not meaning to make it her fault. He grabbed her shoulder, and shook it, making her look up. "My point is...I care about you, Rylie. I don't like seeing you like this."
"Blame it on Luke..." Rylie looked at Michael's green eyes, and they somehow reminded her of Luke's. They weren't the same color, but they had the same power behind them. The same strength and grace that dignified a person.
"I hate Luke for doing this to you...and I had no idea what he was planning, but..." Michael paused, searching for the right words, "You two are perfect for each other, and this is coming from me."
Rylie didn't want to hear him say it, but it was true. It made her feel a little better that she wasn't completely oblivious, and others didn't know either.
"Rylie, I'm telling you this because I need to get it out, and you deserve to know." Michael took a deep breath. His voice quivered with nervousness and anticipation. Rylie feared for another bombshell to make her grieve even more.
"I love you." Michael blurted out, and his tone wasn't shy like it usually was. He smiled with honor as if he were proud to say it. "I know you love Luke, and he loves you....and I'm not trying to pull you two apart, but I love you, and I wanted you to know that."
Rylie tried to process his words. She had never expected him to say that. Rylie thought back to the conversations they had, and the laughs they shared, but she never saw it as more than a friendship. All this time, Michael had been falling more and more in love with her while her thoughts occupied another man.
"I..." Rylie was at a loss for words How do you reply to a kind of statement like that when you don't love the person back?
"I don't expect you to understand..." Michael sighed. He clenched the bed post tightly, turning the knuckles of his hand a pale white.
"Michael..." Rylie loved him, just not that way. She loved him as a brother, and she would do anything for him. It hurt her to see him in pain and there was nothing she could do. She couldn't make herself fall in love with him. Luke was the only person she ever imagined to be with as a lover.
Rylie looked down at her dirty wood floor, and searched in her vast expanse of words in the dictionary of her mind for something to say, but she couldn't think of anything.
Michael gripped her cheek suddenly, and tilted it up so her eyes could meet his. He gradually moved closer to Rylie's face, and she could feel his breath on her lips.
Rylie soon realized what he was doing. As soon as Michael's lips were inches away from her own, she tilted her head to the side, and clamped her eyes shut.
"Michael, I can't." Rylie shook her head. Michael should know Rylie couldn't kiss him. Not even a minute earlier, they were talking about how she loved Luke and nothing could change that.
"Please..." Michael begged, and his voice quivered uncertainly. "Just one time...for me."
Rylie shook her head again. She just...couldn't. It would be awkward...and unromantic...
"Please Rylie!" Michael slightly raised his voice. "I need to know what it feels like to kiss you!"
Rylie gave in to his pleads. Just one small kiss. Just one small, unmeaningful kiss that would make Michael happy.
Michael smiled, and leaned in again. He gripped her cheeks harshly, and Rylie could feel the heat from his fingers imprinting her skin. She felt uneasy kissing him but if it would make him leave...
Michael's lips crashed into Rylie's, and she felt the lust and passion on Michael suddenly absorb her. Their lips together were jagged and rough. It was like putting a key into the wrong lock. It was wrong. Everything about the kiss was forced, and askew...but somehow, Rylie wanted more.
The whole predicament was made of inaccurate feelings, but Rylie needed him. It was the first good feeling in a couple days. Rylie felt wanted. She no longer felt alone, and Michael was giving her a missed pleasure.
Their lips more forcefully devoured each other, scoping every inch of their mouth, and yearning for more.
Rylie broke apart to breathe, and she cooed for Michael as she pulled him farther up the bed. She leaned herself against her smooth headboard, and opened her legs for Michael to move in between.
Their lips connected again, and the passion grew more and more intense.
Michael tore his lips from hers, and trailed them down her neck, leaving wet kisses against her delicate skin. He bit down gently and sucked, making a breathless moan escape her lips. Rylie looked up at the ceiling, trying to find air in her lungs while her hands found Michael's rough hair. Her hips buckled as an eager soreness attacked the sensitivity between her thighs.
Rylie needed someone to numb the pain she felt in her heart, and Michael could do that, even if it was for only a small amount of time. Maybe it was the first step to getting better. Maybe Rylie could finally get over Luke, and learn to love Michael. That's what he wanted so why not give it to him.
Michael broke apart too quickly, and Rylie groaned.
"Should we do this?" Michael asked, a mix of lust and hesitation in his voice.
Rylie nodded furiously, no longer able to wait. She pushed the sweaty hair out of his face, and took a simple second to appreciate his green eyes.
The feelings of want for Rylie were different. It didn't feel the same. There was the same amount of longing, but it was all the wrong motives. Nevertheless, she didn't plan on stopping...and Michael didn't either.
Michael fiddled with Rylie's pajama pants, and he slid them down her legs, leaving her exposed.
Rylie tried to unbutton Michael's skinny jeans, but they wouldn't budge, and she groaned in impatience.
Michael laughed, and undid them, and he attempted to pull the jeans and the boxers off of his legs.
Rylie tugged her sweatshirt off of her body, and she threw it to her floor.
Then, she tugged Michael's loose shirt up, the fabric sticking to his sweaty skin. The shirt soon joined Rylie's on the floor. She trailed her hands down his chest, and felt his muscles contract. The vein in his forehead grew prominent as he eyes Rylie too.
Michael pulled Rylie's legs down, making her lay flat on the bed. His touch between Rylie's unclothed thighs sent shivers up her spine. Oh, she wanted him.
Michael pushed himself down onto her. Rylie lifted her head off the pillow and connected her lips to his. She placed her nails in the crook of his back, and dug slightly, hearing another moan escape him.
Rylie had felt that feeling before with Liam, but now it was with the last person she expected to be doing what they were doing with.
It's a small world.