“Riley, don’t make the same mistakes I did. I almost lost the most important thing in my life because I had unrealistic expectations about what a relationship should look like,” Maysie warned, taking the bowl of popcorn from my hands. I didn’t even try to stop her. I was too busy processing the fact that at some point in all of this mess our roles had reversed. Maysie had, unbeknownst to me, become the no nonsense voice of reason and I had become the screwed up head case with a bad case of I-can’t-make-up-my-mind.
I started to chew on the skin around my thumb. “I know I’m being a hypocrite. I know I’m not making a shit bit of sense, but…” I let my words trail off. No reason to cut myself open completely. I was feeling way too vulnerable and way too touchy. I hated that my world had turned upside down because of a guy.
Somehow, someway, Garrett Bellows had gotten underneath my skin in the worst way possible. He was like a parasite, slowly sucking me dry. That’s what he was! I gigantic, blonde haired, too-cute-for-his-own-good tape worm, eating away at me from the inside out.
“He scares you,” Maysie piped up, grinning at me as she shoved a handful of popcorn into her mouth. She needed to keep that mouth full because I wasn’t appreciating her on the nose analysis of my internal conflict.
I made a noise that sounded like I was choking. “Scared? Give me a fucking break, Mays. Annoyed? Yes. Frustrated? You betcha. Ready to take off someone’s head? Looking more and more like a definite,” I said giving her a pointed look. “But never, ever scared,” I said with more conviction than I felt.
Maysie chuckled. “Oh yes he does. He gives you butterflies. He makes you sweat. He calls you on your bullshit and keeps you on your toes. You both love and hate how he does that. He has you tied up in so many knots you can’t get out. And Miss I-Have-My Whole-World-Figured-Out is going crazy because of it,” Maysie seemed entirely too proud of her deduction.
I opened my mouth to say something but she cut me off…again! “I’m not saying this to be mean, but Riley you’ve become your own worst enemy. I know you think Garrett has nothing to offer. That you’re embarrassed by the fact that you actually like him. But he’s a good guy. He’s a smart guy. And there is no one else in this world that would lay everything at your feet the way that he would. Remember that when you’re sitting in your room later, thinking of a thousand reasons you shouldn’t give things with him a try. Remember he’s the same guy who had your back with Jaz. He’s the same guy who drove you over three hundred miles to be with your grandmother.” My throat felt uncomfortably tight and I blinked rapidly to try to hold off the tears. I will not cry like a little bitch!
“And remember he’s the guy who has made you feel like you’re worth all the hassle. That no matter what you dish out, he is there to take it. To volley it right back and is there to go toe to toe any time you’re ready.” Maysie squeezed my hands. “Damien wasn’t that guy for you. But Garrett is,” she said softly and I closed my eyes and tried to take a deep breath around the huge, crushing weight in my chest.