Kiss Me Already

When Taylor moves to Australia she quickly makes friends and meets lots of new guys, including Leo. In her opinion he is an annoying jerk, but they have a connection and many things in common. She tries to keep away from him and his rebel ways, but with his constant flirting, she finds it hard to keep away from him. Leo is interested in Taylor from the moment he meets her, even though he has a girlfriend, he is completely drawn to her. Will she ever accept that they are perfect for each other?

Written from both Leo and Taylor's points of view.

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23. Chapter 23

Taylor

For some reason, I'm looking at a text my Mom sent me last night, a text I was ignoring. It basically says where she is staying, an address for a hotel. I just want to talk to someone, someone that will listen. I walk into the lobby and haven't got a clue what I do now. Knowing my luck, she's probably out. I can guarantee the people behind the desk won't tell me what room she is in, I could call her, but I don't really want to. I'm still not 100% sure about being here.

I decide to wait around on one of the sofas for a while. I receive a few funny looks from people that work here, I suppose I do look sort of awkward.

Surfing was the only thing I had left, the only thing that made me happy. It may sound like I was in a relationship with my surf board, but I don't really care if that sounds weird. I'm so pissed right now. Why can't Leo just stay out of everything? He made me look like a right fool. This whole thing is his fault, I don't see why he rang my dad, what a jerk.

Mia is even more annoying, I actually thought she was trying to be nice, how could I be so stupid? She knew what she was doing all along. It was her fault that I was there and yet Leo shouted at me more. What the hell is that all about?

"Taylor is that you?" I hear my mom say, I look up and see her lifting her sunglasses onto her head, holding about eight bags of shopping. My eyes draw to the designer labels. If I came here earlier, I probably could have gone shopping with her.

"Hi mom" I say, standing up.

"What's wrong?" She asks, looking concerned. I'm surprised she knows something is up, I'm not crying or anything. Maybe my anger is just showing.

"Everything" I say. Yesterday I didn't want to see her, I don't know what's changed. Maybe it's lucky that she turned up when she did. A girl always needs their mom, right?

"Come on love lets get a drink" she suggests, although it's not really a suggestion as she walks straight into the bar without question. I follow, watching her battle her way to a seat at the actually bar, she gets by pretty well considering the amount of shopping she has. She buys me a Diet Coke, seriously? I could do with something a lot stronger than that right now. She clearly doesn't know me very well. I watch jealously as she takes a sip of her glass of Wine.

Before I think about it, I've already gushed out everything to her. Everything that's in my head. Leo, how angry I am at her for being so distant, how pissed I am at dad for 'confiscating' my board and then more about Leo.

"So he's not actually your boyfriend then?" She asks.

"Seriously? After everything I just said to you, that is your question?" I reply, giving her an are-you-kidding-me sort of look.

"I'm just curious" she says, taking another swig of her drink.

"I just told you, he's an ass, he thinks he knows me and he doesn't!" I shout quietly, it's good to get my anger out, even if it does catch the bar managers attention. I give him a funny look in response.

"Honey, boys are asses" she answers.

"You're about two years too late for that advice mom" I say, which was a bad idea, as she then resorts to drivelling on about how 'sorry' she is for not being there. She's also about two years late for that as well.

"Whatever I don't care mom" I lie, it does bother me, but I don't want to have that conversation with her.

"Well this Leo, he seemed like a nice boy when I met him" she says. But she hardly met him, she doesn't know everything. How much I wanted to stay away from him when we met, how much he wouldn't let me. Then how he made me like him. Then how he lied to me and used me. Then how he ruined my life, by letting my dad take away the one thing that I need.

"Calm down Taylor" she says, clearly noticing how wound up I am inside. Deep down I kind of feel like she gets it, like she understands how I feel.

I stay with her for a while, even though it is sort of weird. We even plan to go out when I'm back from school on Friday. Turning up at school will be better than bunking off again, I'll just keep to myself and ignore practically everyone.

Maybe I'm thinking this because I'm desperate, but I could go back with her and get away, far away. Start from fresh, like I always do. The only thing is, as much as I hate Leo right now, I still have strong feelings for him. But why?

Leo

I'm pretty out of it at school. I'm in last lesson and I haven't even realised. Everything I've been taught today has gone straight out of my head. All I can think about is Taylor. I'm so mad at her. I didn't want Taylor's dad to confiscate her board, but it was kind of the only way. Surprisingly, she's actually bothered to turn up today.

I'm still so pissed at Chase, but he hasn't took the message. He's walking with me Ash and Luca like nothing has happened. I would quite happily punch his face in, but I'm not up for another detention. If he does one more thing, then maybe I'll take it outside of school.

My eyes are drawn to Ruby's group when I see Taylor at the back. She seems pretty absent from the group. They're all there, except for Zara, seems like they haven't made up yet.

They walk straight past us in the hallway, Ruby in too much of a deep conversation to even notice Ash. Taylor however, is fully aware. Weirdly she gives me a meaningful look and then starts smirking to herself, which really confuses me. It starts to make sense when she quite obviously and purposely bumps into Chase. Is she trying to make me jealous or something? And out of everyone she picks Chase, after everything he's done to her.

"Oh Chase! Sorry" she says, giving him smitten eyes and running her hand over his chest. He responds to her being flirty with him, which surprises her and I'm sure that inside she's feeling repulsed. I give her a type of serves-you-right look, which makes her leave and catch up with the girls.

"She wants me so bad" Chase says smugly. How could he possibly think that? She was obviously using him just now.

"Shut the fuck up" I say, in my head I meant to say it under my breath, but I kind of raised my voice at him.

"Your just jealous because she doesn't want you anymore mate" Chase says, at that point I go to sort him out, but I'm pulled back by Luca.

"Guys calm the hell down, are you seriously fighting over a chick?" Luca says, trying to make it seem like it's not a big deal. It's a big deal to me, Chase couldn't give a shit about Taylor, but for me, she's all I care about.

"I'm not" Chase says, proving exactly what I was thinking.

"Prick" I say, quietly this time.

"Anyway... You guys are coming tonight right?" Luca says, but I'm not really listening to him.

"What to you're party?" Ash says.

"Yeah sure, is your girlfriend going to be there?" Chase says, which makes me look up. He's pulling a devilish face. Is he interested in Phoebe now?

I'm pretty sure that he's doing this to wind me up.

"Don't be a jerk Chase" Ash says, not taking him seriously. Luca seems to ignore what Chase said, if I were him I'd have gone ape shit by now.

The look on Chase's face, makes me realise I want to leave.

"I'll be there mate" I say to Luca, before walking away. This party sounds alright, but I can't really be bothered to go.

I head home and take advantage of seeing Taylor walking on her own now.

"Tay" I say, but she carries on walking.

"Look I know I've pissed you off, but at least talk to me" I suggest. She then turns around just as I reach her.

"You haven't pissed me off, I'm absolutely fine" she says, convincing me.

"Well do you want to talk or, will I see you at the party tonight?" I ask.

"Nope, I'm actually going out with my Mom, so see you round" she says, harshly, before she leaves. This is just going to keep going on and on. When will she listen to me?

Taylor

It sounds bad, but I like it that Leo has to play hard to get now. Yeah I'm still angry with him, but that doesn't change my feelings for him.

I get home and plan on going to get changed. Mom said she would take me out for dinner tonight, she's no where near short of money, so it will probably be somewhere fancy. I'm surprised by how well I'm getting on with her, it's nice. She listens to me, when I talk to her about Leo. I'd much rather go out with her, than go to the party everyone else is going to.

I open the door and go through to the kitchen, expecting to find her. Zac is coming too and she said she will come meet us here first.

"Zac" I say up the stairs as I walk in. I look around an empty kitchen and see no sight of her.

"You okay?" Zac says. He doesn't look ready to go out, in his shorts and no top on, like he's been at the beach all afternoon.

"Where's Mom? Are you not ready to go?" I say, frowning.

"Has she not texted you?" Zac says, I start to feel concerned.

"No why?" I say, double checking my phone.

"Tay, she's... Gone home" Zac says, gritting his teeth.

"Gone home? What do you mean gone home?" I say, laughing, because I sort of don't believe it.

"Work need her and she couldn't stay any longer" Zac says. He doesn't seem too bothered, he seems to understand, but I don't.

"What she couldn't stay five hours longer just to say bye?" I ask, I cannot believe this.

"Taylor, don't go mad, she wanted to say bye, but you were at school" Zac says.

"That doesn't matter, she promised she would see us tonight! What kind of mother is she?" I say, crying out of anger. I storm off before Zac can say another word.

Apparently it's normal now for people to let me down. Maybe I should start getting used to it.

Zac doesn't bother me all night and Dad is out at the surf club. I've been wallowing in my sorrows all night. Why should I? Why do I let things bother me? I've had enough, I'm going to this party.

I quickly fix my make up and grab a dress out of my wardrobe. I'm feeling risky and careless, so I grab a short, black dress. It's very short, but I don't give a crap. I walk to the party, on my own and in the dark, but again, I do not care one bit.

"What are you doing here?" Phoebe says as I walk round the back of her house and see her with a group of people. There's quite a lot of people here.

"Am I not welcome?" I joke.

"Of course you are, what happened to going out with your mom?" She says.

"Oh that went out the window, now I need a drink" I say and she shoves a beer in my hand, she knows me well. I walk further into the party and I am soon joined by Ruby. She looks at my dress, seeming very surprised.

"What? Do I not look slutty enough?" I joke, laughing it off.

"Tay what's up with you?" She says, finding this funny.

"Oh nothing, I'm 100% fine" I say, which is true, because I don't care about anything anymore.

"If you say so" she says.

I hang around with her for a little bit and that means Ash joins us. I notice Chase and Zara in opposite ends of the back yard. They're so pathetic, they clearly like each other, so why are they acting like nothing ever happened between them? Even I'm accepting that they should be together.

After a few too many drinks, I start to feel my balance going. I love the feeling, it helps you forget about all the crap that's going on in your head. I soon ditch the others and go to get some revenge when I see Mia chatting to a guy. She's clearly trying to find a rebound, as she's still hung up on Leo. Shame I don't have any sympathy for her.

"Mia hey!" I say, being fake friendly.

"Taylor" she says, looking to the ground. She probably still feels bad about pushing me to surf by the cliffs.

The guy she's talking to is a year or so older, I've never met him. To be honest I don't think Phoebe would have invited Mia, so she's probably gate crashing, that could mean he is too.

"Hi I'm Josh" the guy says, like I care or need to know who he is.

It may be the drink talking, but embarrassing her would make my night ten times better. It's because of what she did to me at the cliffs, Ruby told me that she called Leo to tell him what was going on. It was her plan all along.

"So Mia, did you get your STI test back from the clinic?" I say, it's the first thing that comes to my mind. There's a chance this guy could believe me. Josh frowns at Mia, looking fairly put off.

"STI test?" He repeats, giving her a funny look. This is brilliant. I wish I was this confident in causing mischief when I'm sober.

"She's lying... What the hell are you doing?" She asks, yanking me aside roughly, which isn't good, because I'm very tipsy.

She makes me feel like a midget, I'm not even short, she just looks ridiculous in those heels. I've even decided to wear heels but they are not as high as hers.

"I'm paying you back Mia, my dad won't let me surf anymore and that's on you" I say, still sounding careless, but not being able to surf is actually one of the things I care about. It's the surf competition next week, I was determined to win.

"Oh grow up, fix this!" She says, nodding to Josh.

So it's okay for her to screw my life up, but when she's about to be embarrassed it's different.

"Josh was it?... I really think you should stay as far away as you can from her, until she's had the all clear from the doctors" I say, laughing to myself.

"Thanks for the tip" he says, looking put off by Mia. She's lost for words, for once. Maybe this was a bit mean of me, but do I give a damn? No.

"Do you want to get another drink?" He asks me, realising my cup is empty. That vodka went very quickly, maybe I'll have another beer this time.

"Yeah sure" I say, looking smugly at Mia. I suppose I'm just taking advantage of how hot this Josh guy is,

I don't particularly want anything to happen with another guy. I'm not that gross, I only slept with Leo the other day.

At first I think I'm seeing things, but I'm not. Leo is now here, I see him talking to Ash. It's typical that he would show up as soon as I started thinking about him.

I'm kind of on a buzz after putting Mia in her place and when I see Zara, I just want to talk to her too. I agree to join Josh and his friends once I've talked to her.

"Zara" I say, making her turn around. She seems surprised. I know I said I wasn't coming, but everyone is shocked to see me.

"Taylor, hey, how are you?" She says, worry lines are on her forehead. It's like she's still feeing really guilty. She should feel bad, but I don't care about Chase and I never did.

"I'm fabulous" I exaggerate, just to be the sarcastic fool I am.

"Look I wanted to talk to you about... well I think you know what I wanted to-" she begins.

"Chase? You can do whatever you want with that tosser, it's got nothing to do with me" I reply, which makes the sympathy show in her eyes.

I look up and notice Leo's eyes on me, it's as though he's watching over me, does he think I'm some kind of risk to myself because I went surfing by the cliffs. The pathetic thought makes me laugh inside.

"Taylor I don't know what to say, me and Chase... We have a past together"

"Funny, you never told me that, in fact you told me you hated him" I say, rolling my eyes.

"I do... But I sort of love him at the same time" she says, finding it difficult to say.

"Does he know that?" I ask, before accidentally spilling a bit of my drink.

"No, he doesn't" she says, looking sort of gloomy. Maybe this is a sensitive subject. I don't make it any worse when I say,

"Oh well maybe I'll just go and tell him, I'm sure he would love to know" I say, about to walk away, before she stands in my way.

"Taylor no! Why are you being such a bitch?" She says, being a bit (actually very) harsh on me. When she said bitch, it was pretty loud and now everyone is looking at me. Do they all think I'm in the wrong? What have I even done?

"Me a bitch? Who's the one that fucked the guy I was seeing huh?" I say, folding my arms. She looks ready to cry when she walks away, if anyone is crying then it should be me. I continue with my drink, whilst everyone slowly takes there eyes off me. That's another drink all gone, who knows how many I've had now.

Josh's friends are just as nice looking as he is. Mason, the guy that works behind the beach bar is one of them. He's usually a bit of a perve around me, but he's a bit too out of it now to even notice me. He looks very drunk.

"This dress is very nice" Josh says, pulling me onto his lap and running his hands over my bare legs. I don't want to look up, because I know Leo is still looking at me and listening to our conversation. Him, Ashton and Luca are now talking in a group that's even closer to us, could he be anymore discrete?

"What are you thinking?" I say to Josh, laughing at the deep look he's giving me. I've only just met this guy and I'm sat on his lap, what is wrong with me?

"I'm thinking we could go somewhere more private" he says, raising an eyebrow.

"I bet you'd like that wouldn't you?" I say, being flirty on purpose. I know Leo is listening.

"Do you know what you might like? Something a little stronger than that" Mason suddenly says, snapping out of the daze he was in. I don't really listen to what he's saying, he's just nodding at my drink.

"Like what?" I say, genuinely confused.

"Anything you want, you name it, I'll sell it you... Actually I'll give it you for free" he says, looking me up and down, searching his pockets. This is getting dark. For a split second I think about it, how stupid am I?

Before I can say anything, Leo is right there.

"What the hell is wrong with you? Stay away from her and get out of here right now" He yells at Mason, who happily leaves, probably to go sell drugs to people. I never thought he was into that sort of stuff.

"Wow, I don't think phoebes ordered a bodyguard Leo" Luca jokes, but Leo ignores it. I realise I'm still sat on Josh's lap with my arm around his neck and his hand is on my ass now.

"What are you thinking?!" He yells at me. His seriousness makes me keep laughing when he drags me off Josh's lap.

I stumble behind him as he drags me around a corner, not roughly. He clearly wants to get me away from those guys, why can't he leave me alone? I've asked him to.

For some reason I'm still laughing and my balance is all over the place.

"Are you trying to be the hero?" I say, acting smitten.

"Look just stop it, stop acting like this" he says, not looking too happy. I'm sick of him raising his voice, he can't tell me what to do.

"You like this side of me and I like this side of you" I say, just to mess with his head. I don't know why I'm doing it and I'll probably regret it when I start to sober up.

"This isn't a side to me, I'm just trying to stop you from being so reckless" he says. I slowly look down at what he's wearing. Black, ripped denim shorts and a deep blue top. He always looks good.

"I'm not being reckless" I say, because I'm really not. He's completely exaggerating.

"Yes you are!" He insists. It's not a big deal, I wasn't actually going to do drugs, I'm not that stupid.

"And why would you care?" I say, looking at him intently for a second.

"Because I like you and I care about you, how many times do I have to say it?" He asks, he seems to be getting angry now, sort of impatient. I look down and see his hand on my waist, he can tell how bad my balance is, it's as though his hand is there for support.

I run my hand down his chest and notice the deep look he's giving me, before I kiss him. I'm not really thinking about it, it just felt right. I want him again, of course I do. It doesn't last long, as he soon pulls back, but my hand remains on his chest.

"No, this isn't you" he says, dropping his hand from my waist.

"What do you mean this isn't me?" I say, almost laughing.

"This isn't the side of you that I like Taylor" he says.

"Fine" I say, running my hands down his back, my left hand edges close to his shorts. "... The next time you want me, you won't get me" I say, walking away.

He's changed and I don't like it.

Leo

All that was, was weird. I would love to have hooked up with her again. But it wasn't right. I don't like the way she's acting, that's not the girl I feel like I love. I can't leave her in this state, why is she always getting drunk?

She can't be this angry, just because of me. Earlier she said she was seeing her mom, so I don't know why she was even here. I decide to ring Zac to see if anything has happened.

'This is about Taylor isn't it?' He asks, before saying hi.

'Yeah, what's going on?' I ask, but I think I already know.

'Just our amazing mom has left again, after promising to see her tonight' he says, sarcastically.

'Your kidding' I say, shaking my head. I didn't think their mom would have actually left.

'Nope, that's what she's like, Tay was right about her, I should've listened' he says.

'She's not acting herself' I say, sounding relaxed, but inside I'm worried.

'I know, she does this, you've just got to leave her to get over it' he replies.

'Alright then' I say, before we hang up. I can't believe that's his advice, I can't just leave her to deal with her mom issues on her own.

Once I rejoin the party, I realise she's gone. Maybe I should give her a while to be on her own, maybe that will sober her up. She's not stupid, she wouldn't let anyone take advantage of her drunk state, she would only do that to get to me.

I notice Zara, she's been quiet all night, not like her. The last I heard, was her calling Taylor a bitch, I don't think I need to ask what the reason for that was. She's clearly hung up on Chase, maybe I could do something to help. As much as I don't want to talk to the guy, I pull Chase away from a group of chicks. He can be a dick at times, he was quite obviously flirting with them in front of Zara.

"Leo what the hell? I was so in there" he says, looking at one of them from behind.

"Will you stop being such a jerk" I say, blatantly.

"What you mean?" He says, not paying attention to what I'm telling him, instead he's scouting the garden for any other girls he can hit on.

"Look at me" I say, snapping him out of whatever gaze he was in. "Zara is right there Chase, you've been a dick to her, but she still likes you" I say, noticing he doesn't like talking about her.

"Good point she's looking pretty fit tonight" he says, checking her out.

"Mate that's not what I'm getting at, she fucking loves you, isn't that obvious?" I say, surprised no one can hear. I don't know if Zara loves him, but that's how it seems to me and everyone else.

"No she doesn't" he says, with a look of disbelief.

"Yeah, she does" I insist, pretty much laughing, at how he doesn't see it.

"Whatever, it doesn't matter, I don't do girlfriends" he replies. It's a bit stupid, as Taylor was his girlfriend, then again, he only went out with her so he could hook up with her.

"You like her too Chase, why can't you-" I begin, before he angrily cuts me off.

"Of course I do alright" he says, shouting quietly.

"She's too good for me, I'm trying to push her away" he says. For once, I actually believe him, he does like her. She probably is too good for him, but that's a pretty lame excuse.

"You can't, she won't get over you, look at her" I say, gesturing to the other side of the garden. He looks at her sat down, with her arms in her lap, holding and empty cup loosely, her shoulders are slumped and there's not an inch of a smile on her face.

"Maybe I'll go and talk to her, but that doesn't mean anything" he insists.

"Yeah sure" I say, before heading to the drinks table to chuck my empty bottle. I notice him sit beside Zara and grab her hand in an encouraging way. Chase has two very different personalities, I can't help thinking that Zara is the only one that sees his good side. Maybe if Zara is his priority, he will stay away from Taylor. That's all I care about.

I find out from Ruby that she said she was going home. I can believe that, there's no way she would have found her way to the rock she's so obsessed with when she's tipsy. I don't bother ringing her, I just go straight over and knock the door.

"Leo, how're you?" Danny, her Dad says as he opens the door for me. I go in and instantly look for her, but I don't see her.

"Yeah good" I say.

"I meant to thank you for the other day, for telling me about Taylor, she can be a bit of a thrill seeker sometimes" he says, laughing, but I can't laugh back. I'm not in the mood.

"Actually, is she here?" I ask, before he drags me into a conversation.

"She's in her room, go on up, its first room on your right" he says.

I guess I just knock. She answers with a gloomy 'what?'. I go in and before she can realise who it is, I notice her laying flat on her stomach with her face in the bed sheets.

"You've sobered up then?" I say, shutting the door behind me.

"Leo?" She says, sitting up, that's when I notice tears down her face. She's still wearing the dress she wore earlier, but now she's got a lacy dressing gown on loosely over the top. I go and sit down next to her.

"Zac told me what happened" I say. She wipes her eyes in embarrassment.

"You can cry in front of me Tay, talk to me" I say, nearly laughing, how can she feel embarrassed with me?

"I'm sorry" she says, leaning her head against my chest. I put an arm around her and we sit there like that.

"What are you sorry about?" I ask.

"For being such a pain in the ass, I know I shouldn't have gone surfing at the cliffs and earlier, I made such a fool of myself" she says, crying a little more.

"Forget about it, you don't need to be sorry" I say, kissing her cheek, in hope that it might cheer her up. It takes a while for her to bring up the subject of her mom.

"She just left and didn't say anything, she doesn't care about us and she makes promises she can't keep"

"I know it hurts" I say, I seem to be getting better at comforting people. It's just so easy with her, it's like I know exactly what to say.

"Will you stay tonight?" She asks.

"Course, now get some sleep" I suggest.

She lies down, still holding my hand. All I want is to be there for her.

I keep my arm around her for as long as I can remember, until I fall asleep.

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