Out Of Bounds

In all honesty, my sister and I had never been close

But one person was going to tear us further apart

His name is Luke Hemmings

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18. 18

Luke's kiss has the ability to erase the humiliation and the pain of not only the last few hours but the last few years.

We take this time alone to explore each other but we know the boundaries that stop this from going further. He removes my T shirt but I keep my bikini top on. His fingers move across my skin and he smiles when he sees goosebumps form on my arms. He can visually see what he does to me and this pleases him. I put my hands inside his T shirt and I feel his firm stomach. His skin is warm and comforting and I slowly start to pull his shirt off.

The door knocks and I jump off his lap like we have been caught doing something we shouldn't be. We are doing something we shouldn't be, I know, but we haven't been caught

"It's just food, don't panic. I'll go" he stands up and kisses the end of my nose so I slide my T shirt back on. I don't think it's really appropriate to be sitting here half naked! I run my fingers over my lips and smile as I think back to a few moments ago when his mouth was on mine. I hope this is a memory I will never forget

Luke walks in and he's frowning

"What's wrong?"

He doesn't answer my question, instead he moves to the side. I stand up quickly and make sure my T shirt is pulled down properly

"Cal, Hi. What are you doing here?"

He comes into the room and looks between Luke and I

"These came today. I just thought I would drop them off and surprise you. I went by the beach and Jodie said you had come home. I've semi sorted things with my mom but I told her I would be back in an hour"

I take a white envelope off him and shake my head as I open it

"It's our tickets. Oh wow I'm so excited they are here! I can't believe we are going! Thank you for bringing them " I step forward to give him a hug but he steps back

"Yeah. I'm not going"

"What? Why?"

He pushes his hands into his pockets and smiles sadly

"Because it's obvious it's not me you want to go with Carly"

Luke folds his arms and bites his lip ring. Cal gives him a look that makes us know somehow, he knows

"Dude she was drunk, she wanted to come home. I don't know what the hells going on with you two but nothing here should stop whatever is happening" He gestures to the envelope but my attention is on Calum. He looks so hurt

"Luke don't! We've been best friends for eleven years. Don't lie to me!"

"Calum please, I want us to go together, like we planned. Like Luke said, nothing is going on here. We are friends, that's all"

"Why? Why would you want to go with me when you had what you wanted in this room before I showed up -"

"It's not like that!" I plead with him but he's having none of it

"My moms leaving for Armidale tomorrow for two weeks to see my auntie. I was going to come back Friday so we could leave for the gig but I'm going to stay there with her and try and gain some of her trust back. I've had the worst few hours of my life! And now this" he turns to leave the room but Luke stands in his way

"Calum, listen to me. Nothing is going on. Just chill! We are hanging out, that's all"

Calum goes to push past Luke but then stops to face me. I take this as my opportunity to stop this mess

"Cal please. I want to go with you. You are my friend so we don't need to have this atmosphere. Please, just come with me"

"Carly we were meant to be going on a date -"

"I know. Friday, and I want to go"

Luke looks up from the floor and he looks angry. Really angry. Calum moves forward and looks down at my face. I try to smile but he gives nothing away. His eyes are emotionless, I don't want it to be this way

"Then look me in the eyes and tell me nothing is going on between you and Luke"

"What this is crazy. I -"

"Carly, just say it. You're a good person, just tell me the truth. Don't lead me on like this"

"This is insane" Luke mutters but Calum doesn't stop looking at me

"Calum, I, we, Luke and I -"

"That's all I needed to know" Calum nods defeated and this time pushes past Luke. When he gets to the front door Luke softly pulls him back by his arm

"Don't worry Luke, I won't say anything. I don't need any bullshit drama in my life but whatever is going on between you two has to stop now. From that first house party I knew something was going on, or that you at least liked her, so if I can see it, how the hell can Jodie be so blind! I'm over this, it's messed up! You are going to hurt Carly -"

"Calum shut it! You have no idea what you're talking about!" Luke's voice gets harsher and I can't watch the exchange between them

"Yes I do know what I'm talking about you idiot! It's her sister! Of all the girls you could have had you chose the one that I liked. You're a prick man. An absolute prick!"

"Calum wait please!"

"Carly don't" he raises his hand to tell me this conversation is done and I want to cry. I want us to be friends. But now I've hurt him. How many people are we going to hurt? Oh gosh I can't take these feelings. They are too big for my body "you're a really nice girl Carly. Don't let him ruin you"

"We've been friends for a long time but don't push it. I'm warning you" Luke walks forward but I get between the both of them before a fight erupts. Calum opens the front door just as the delivery guy delivers our food. He laughs and shakes his head

"Ha! A romantic meal for two. Be careful not to choke, although you'll end up choking on your lies one day"

I bite my lip and take a step back

"Carly, I didn't mean that. Shit. I'm sorry. I was never a good loser. Just give me time, space, whatever. Your secrets safe with me. I was never here and neither was Luke if anyone asks. That's what a friend does. They have your back. See you around" He walks down the path and Luke pays for the food after the delivery guy repeats the order total about five times. Luke's let Calum go and maybe he knows that it's for the best, that he does need space but I'm tempted to run after him, to plead with him to not hate me. To be my friend. But what's the use? He's angry right now and I know he won't tell anyone about what's happened here but it's not about that. I don't want him to think any less of me.

I follow Luke into the kitchen and he places the food on the counter. The atmosphere between us is horrible and I feel like he's closing off from me again. I sit on a stool and watch him hold the bridge of his nose

"I don't want to talk about what's just happened. I seriously don't" he takes a deep breath and then leans onto the counter for support "just answer me one thing. What was in that envelope"

"Hmm tickets" I clear my throat as I'm struggling to get the words out "tickets"

"Tickets for?"

"1975"

"You were going to see a band with him?"

"Yes! We were friends up until about five minutes ago!"

He grins for a second, clearly amused that I'm in a snappy mood and I see the soft side of Luke slowly coming back to me

"I didn't even know they were playing here?"

I hold a strand of hair in between my fingers and pretend I'm engrossed in my own thoughts

"Carly?"

"Yes?"

"What aren't you telling me?"

I drop my hair and my eyes focus on my lap

"the gigs in Maitland. We was going to stay over night"

"Are you actually joking?"

He hits his palm off the work counter and it makes me jump. I look at him and he's started to pace

"What? What's so wrong with that?"

"He's my best friend Carly! And you and him, the thought of you two, alone in a hotel! Was the plan to hook up after? Because that's what he would have thought!"

"I think after what's happened tonight it's pretty obvious that I have no intention of jumping into bed with just anyone! It's hours away! I was going to drive, I would have been tired, it made sense! We stayed in a hotel together and we didn't do anything!"

"No we didn't because you were a passed out drunken mess but believe me if you had been sober then I would have wanted to! I have no restraint around you, it's killing me!" Oh. That takes me off guard, but Luke doesn't see how he's taken my breath away. He carries on this argument "Why did you even agree to go in the first place?"

"Because as I've said we are friends. Or at least we were!"

"Do you like him?"

He stops pacing and his walls are back up. I rub my neck and look at the ceiling. It takes me a few seconds to try and collect my thoughts but my brain doesn't even feel like it's functioning anymore. I look at him and he takes a step closer

"Well?"

"I thought I was starting to. I barely know him, it was a crush. But what was the use of even trying to think of him that way? Since the day I meet you, when my truck broke out in the street, I haven't been able to think about anyone or anything else. My intelligence can sometimes be questioned and this is the most dumbest thing I've ever done but I'm not blind. Calum is right no matter what you say. You are going to hurt me. I will probably never see you again unless it's at yours and Jodie's wedding and you are going to ruin me. And because of that I am stupid because right now and whenever I'm around you I don't care about all of that -"

"Carly if there was a way to make this work don't you think I would have tried by now?"

"Maybe. I guess. I don't know" I get off the stool and look at the food "I don't feel hungry anymore"

He leans his hands on the counter and takes a deep breath

"Me neither. Do you want me to go?"

I run my hands through my hair and they drop at my side as his phone starts ringing. He takes it out of his pocket and I know it's Jodie. He turns his back on me as he swipes his thumb across the screen to answer

"Hello? Sure. Ok. Yeah, that's great. Well done babe. Have fun. I'm going to bed. I'm fine, I'm just tired. You too. Bye "

I shake my head and laugh. I turn to walk up the stairs but he manages to get ahead and stands in front of me

"What's so funny? How do you expect me to be on the phone? She's staying at Tiffs. I could stay here, with you? Lock the bedroom door, my cars in my garage no one would know"

I roll my eyes and look at the floor

"And if she wasn't staying at Tiffs then what? Would you bring her home? Sneak into her room? I take it when you just replied, you too, that was to her saying she loved you. So I get the scraps of you when she's not around but when she is I get nothing. Nothing Luke"

"Carly for fucks sake just tell me what you want!"

I rub my eyes and stretch. I am physically and emotionally drained

"I don't even know. I don't. Why we are arguing?"

"Because you are being a head trip that's why! I have told you I'm falling for you and now it's you who has put your guard up! I've literally beat a person up tonight because of you and to top it off my best friend who is like my brother now hates me! You make out this is all me but its you too Carly, you are messing with my head! I can't take it!"

He goes to leave and this time I pull him back

"where do you think you're going?"

"Home"

"Stay with me? Please? I'm sorry. You're right. It's been easy to put the blame on you but we are in this together -"

"If I could think of a way, anyway to make this happen. I would! I want you Carly, but most of all I need you"

I reach up on my tiptoes and kiss his cheek. I grab the food and put some forks into the brown delivery bag and then get the envelope from out of the living room. I don't feel that hungry but I know I need to eat. My body is literally drained. Luke holds my hand and leads me upstairs and for the briefest of moments it's almost like we are boyfriend and girlfriend. In a normal, healthy relationship. But we are not. Once in my room he settles on the bed and starts flicking through the television channels. It's only eleven p.m and I know mom and dad won't be back for a while yet. In the privacy of my bathroom I get dressed into an oversized T shirt that comes just my above my knees and I put on some bed socks. I pile my clothes into the wash basket in the hallway and purposely leave my T shirt on top so mom will see it when she comes upstairs and she will know I'm in bed. It's not unheard of for me to lock my door so I know she won't disturb me.

When I walk back into my room Luke has put a blanket on the floor and has laid the food out like a picnic. He holds out his hand and then pulls me down so I'm sitting next to him

"I think this is the most romantic thing I've done for anyone" he softly laughs and I smile

"Well this is the most romantic thing anyone has ever done for me so it's a first for the both of us" he kisses the top of my head and we both lean against the bed frame as the film, Halloween, starts.

After food my eyes feel like they are getting heavy so Luke and I get into bed. I'm suddenly self conscious but only the light from the television fills the room so I can hide these insecurities. We are within touching distance but neither of us makes a move. I don't know whether it's exhaustion, apprehension or reality that stops us but just lying here facing each other is all I need right now

"What will you do about the tickets?"

"I'll see if Amy wants to go, I need to sell it as Calum can't be out of money and if she doesn't then I will just go alone"

"You are not going by yourself! Over my dead body am I letting you be over two hours away from me. Alone!"

"I've been to gigs alone before" I yawn and my eyes start to close "I haven't got many friends in Coonamble. I was bullied for a few years, it gets easier to be alone, I accept my own company. The loneliness isn't such a lonely feeling anymore ..."

No more words leave my mouth as my eyes shut and the tiredness and all the overwhelming emotions of today consume my body

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