In fact, the only thing that makes sense in this world is the fact that I'll love her. I'll love her always and forever.
I watched as the door closed, and I looked at it. What happened? As I moved to make my way towards the door, I feel a hand on my shoulder. I turn around to find Cindy standing behind me.
"Jake..." she starts.
"I'm sorry; I'm on my way out. My girlfriend just left and..."
"Amanda just spilled her beer all over her," she tells me softly.
"/She what/?" I hiss out.
"She walked up to her, and they exchanged a few words...and then Amanda just dumped her drink on her."
I mutter a few curses under my breath as I make my way towards the kitchen. I watch as Amanda grabs another bottle of beer and turns around. I walk over to her, take the bottle from her hand, and slam it down onto the counter; pleasantly surprised that it doesn't break. She gasps loudly and backs onto a wall, her eyes wide. I walk up to her, and I notice she's started shaking.
"Jake..." she says, her voice shaky, "w-what's wrong?"
"Listen to me, Amanda, because I'm only going to say this once. If you do anything to hurt Isabella, and I mean anything...you're going to regret it."
"Are you threatening me?"
"No, I'm telling you a fact."
"If it weren't for her, you'd like me!"
"That's not true. I'm not attracted to you, Amanda. I never have been, and believe me, I never will be. So just give it up. This thing you're wanting between us, let it go, because it's never going to happen."
I turn around and I quickly make my way out of the kitchen, and towards the front door, meeting Cindy along the way.
"Thanks, Cind...I'll see you later, okay?"
I open the door, and as soon as I do, I find Isabella sitting on the bottom step, with her arms around herself. I close the door, and I move closer to her, kneeling down beside her. I bring a gentle hand under her chin, and I bring her face up to look at mine. My heart clenches as I see the trail of tears on her cheeks, her dark make up running slightly.
"I'm sorry, baby," I whisper.
She doesn't say anything, but she doesn't have to. Her tears are speaking more than enough for me to understand what she's feeling. I put my arm around her, and I help her up. I lead her towards my truck, and I open my door. I lean inside and grab my jacket.
"Here, get inside the truck, and take those shirts off and put this on. I know you must be cold, and I don't want you to get sick. Just knock on the window when you're finished."
She takes it without saying anything, and climbs inside the truck, and I close the door for her. I turn my back to the window, and lean against it to give her privacy despite of the heavily tinted windows. I run my hands through my hair, and sigh heavily. I should've known better than to leave her in there alone. I could've prevented all of this. Suddenly, I see the front door open, and I see Chad quickly jog over to me.
"What happened? Is she okay?" he asks, and I nod.
"Yeah, I think so. She's changing," I say as I point back to the window.
"Do you want me to follow you guys home? It's pretty late."
"No, it's fine."
Suddenly, there's a soft knock on the window, and I turn around. I open the door slowly, and find her sitting with her head down. Before I can say anything, Chad steps up to the truck.
"Hey, babe, you alright?" he asks softly, and she nods.
"Are you cold?" I ask her, and she shakes her head, "baby, talk to me."
"What do you want me to say?" she asks softly, her voice quivering.
"Nothing, you don't have to say anything," Chad cuts in as he looks at me, "I'll see you later, alright?"
"Sure," she says.
He leans in, and hugs her, but she doesn't move to hug him back. He pulls back and sighs softly, and I close the door.
"Don't push her to talk to you," he says, "you know her well enough to know that will only make it worse."
"I'll catch up with you later, man. Take care of her."
He pats my shoulder before he begins to slowly make his way towards Jeff's house again. I go around to the driver's side of the truck, and open the door. I climb in, and I start the truck. The entire drive home, Isa's staring out the window.
I pull into the driveway, and I kill the engine. I don't make a move to open the door though. I simply sit there. Out of the corner of my eye, I see Isabella look over at me. Moments later I hear her move, and her door opens. I reach out and gently grab her arm. She looks over at me, her eyes watery.
"I'm sorry," I whisper.
She blinks a few times, before closing her door, and moving closer to me. She slowly leans into me, and I put my arms around her. She reaches up, and takes her hair down, settling into me even more. I can literally feel her body shaking as I hold her.
"Don't be sorry," she whispers, "it's not the first time someone's done that to me."
"Who else has done that to you?"
"Daddy...except he was drinking something a lot stronger. It wasn't the fact that she threw her drink on me that upset me so much. It was the fact that it reminded me of him."
"Don't be...I'm fine. I'm sorry I wouldn't talk to you...I just..."
"Don't apologize, I understand, baby."
"Can we go inside?"
"Of course, c'mon."
She pulls away, and I open my door. I walk around to the other side, and she closes the door. I grab her hand, and we walk towards the front door. I quietly insert the key in the door, and turn it. I open the door slowly, and she walks in. I walk in after her, and close the door quietly, locking it afterwards. As we walk past the kitchen, I see mom sitting at the table, reading a book.
"What are you still doing up?" I ask and Isabella follows me into the kitchen.
"I couldn't sleep. Did you guys have a nice time?"
"I'm going to go change," Isabella says quietly.
"Here, I'll wash those," I offer as I motion to her tops.
"They have to be washed by hand though."
"That's fine, I'll do it."
"Okay," she says as she gives me her shirts, "thanks."
"You're welcome. I'll be up in a little bit, okay? That tape's in the movie cabinet, you can pop it in if you still feel like watching it."
"Okay," she turns to mom, "good night."
"Good night, dear."
Isabella smiles slightly before she leaves the kitchen. I hear her soft footsteps on the stairs, and I take a seat next to mom. She puts her hand on my arm and rubs it gently.
"I have one word for you...Amanda."
"Oh, dear...they met?" she asks as I stand up and walk to the sink.
"Yeah," I say as I turn on the faucet, "if you want to call it that. She was all over me since we got there...and when we were about to leave, I left Isa inside while I went to tell Jeff we were leaving. When I came back inside, I saw her walking towards the door. I called her a few times, but she just walked out. Turns out that Amanda spilled her beer all over Isabella."
"I know," I say as I wash Isabella's shirts, "Cindy stopped me on the way out, and told me what happened. Let's say I gave Amanda a piece of my mind."
"What did you do?"
"Pretty much, I told her to stay away from Isabella, or I'd make sure she'd regret it."
"I'm not sure you should be threatening her like that, sweetie," she says as she stands up and walks over to me.
"I'll tell you the same thing I told her, I wasn't threatening her. I was simply stating a fact."
"The things you do for that girl," she smiles, "you're one of a kind, darling."
"Just because I love my girlfriend?"
"Well, yes. You're loyal to her, faithful, protective, loving...what more could a girl want?"
"I don't know."
"Why don't you head upstairs...I'll finish this."
"Are you sure? I don't mind doing it. It's pretty late, ma."
"I'm sure, go ahead," she says, and I smile.
I close the faucet, and dry my hands. I pull her into a hug, and kiss her cheek. She smiles at me, and presses her lips against my cheek, as well. I turned, and walked out of the kitchen, making my way towards the stairs. I climb them slowly, running my hands through my hair. I reached my doorway, and saw Isa sitting on my bed, running a brush through her silky hair. I made my way towards her, and she looked up, smiling at me.
"Can I?" I ask as I sit behind her.
I gently take the brush from her hands, and begin to run it through her hair. There wasn't a single knot in it. It was as perfect as it could be. I brushed it off to the side, and leaned into her neck, pressing my lips against the soft skin. She gasped softly, and I continued to kiss the skin. I set the brush aside, and pulled her body back against mine. She leaned her head back against my shoulder, and I brought my hands to her sides, taking a gentle grip on them. My lips roamed the slope of her neck, kissing everywhere except for that one spot that I know would make her melt. Her sensitive spot was the area right below her ear. I loved the whimpering sound she made when I kissed her there. It was beautiful music to my ears. I bring my hand to her face, and I gently turn it towards me.
"I love you," I murmur.
"I love you, too, Jake."
I pressed my lips against hers in a soft kiss, our lips simply pressed against one another's. As I sit there kissing her, I realize that I'll never know a better feeling than the one she gives me when she kisses me; it's almost as if she breathes life into my senses. I slowly deepen the kiss, turning her body towards me until she was sitting sideways on my lap. Our kiss was deepened slightly more, our lips pressed against each other in a passionate kiss. I brought one of my hands to her neck, and I brushed my fingertips against that spot below her ear. She whimpered softly against my lips and I caressed it again, satisfied with her repeated reaction. I pulled my lips away from hers, and attached my lips to that spot on her neck. I barely brushed the skin with my lips when I heard her gasp, before she whimpered softly.
"Baby..." I murmured against her ear, and she shuddered slightly.
"I love you so much."
She pulls away enough to look up at my face. Her eyes are glistening with a soft trace of tears as her lips curl into a gentle smile.
"I love you, too."
I reach up and caress her cheek with the side of my thumb, and she closes her eyes.
"You're so beautiful," I whisper to her, and her eyes open.
"Shh...you don't need to thank me for telling you something I see."
She nods slightly, and settles her head on my shoulder, sighing softly. I slowly lay back until I'm flat on my back, and she's lying on top of me. I look down at her, only to find her looking up at me. I smile at her and bring a single finger to the spot between her eyes. She giggles softly as I run my finger down to the tip of her nose. I smile slightly wider; I love the sound of her laughter. I love the expression of her face when she laughs-it's absolutely stunning.
"Can we still watch the video?" she asks.
"Of course. Let me change first, okay?"
She rolls off me, and giggles as she lands on the bed with a soft thud. I smile as I watch her crawl under the covers, turning her head away from me. I get up, and walk over to my dresser, opening the drawer. I pull out a pair of long camouflage cargo shorts, and a black wife beater. I slide my shirt off, and pull the wife beater on, before sliding my jeans off. I slide the shorts on, and smile as I pick my clothes up off the floor.
"I'll be right back, babe," I tell her, "I'm going to take these clothes to the laundry room."
"Good boy," she says.
I laugh slightly as I walk out. I had a feeling she'd say something to that effect. I walk down the stairs, and I shake my head when I see the kitchen light on.
"Mom, you need to go to bed," I say as I walk in.
I look around the kitchen, and don't see her. However, the refrigerator door is open and I see little fuzzy slippers underneath. I smile as I come closer and see Jennifer.
"Hey munchkin," I say as I kneel down next to her, "what are you doing up? It's late."
"I was thirsty."
"You could've called me, sweetie."
"I didn't know if you were home yet."
"I got home not too long ago."
"Yeah," I say as I pick her up, "did you get something yet?"
"No, will you get something for me?"
"Of course. How about some chocolate milk?"
"Mommy doesn't let me drink chocolate milk this late, you know that..." she says.
"Mommy's asleep," I whisper and she grins.
I set her down on the counter, and I reach into the cupboard to grab a plastic cup. I open the refrigerator, and pull out the gallon of milk. I open the top, and pour milk into the cup. I put the lid back on the gallon, and replace it back in the refrigerator before grabbing the chocolate syrup. I pour a reasonable amount into the milk. I put it back inside the refrigerator, as well, and close the door. I open the drawer next to the stove, and pull a spoon out. I mix the contents inside the cup until the milk turns a light chocolate brown. I hand her the cup, and she grins at me again before bringing it to her lips. Suddenly, I think that Isabella might like some, too. I smile to myself, as I reach up to the cupboard and grab a much bigger glass where mom pours milkshakes, and set it on the counter. I fill it with milk, and mix in some chocolate syrup while Jennifer downs hers. I mix it with a long spoon mom has especially for these cups, and wash both spoons I used before putting them away. I see that Jennifer's finished her milk, as well, and I take the cup from her. I wash it, and put it back in the cupboard.
"See? Mom will never know," I say as I pick her up.
"You're so bad!" she giggles as I grab my clothes and walk towards the laundry room.
"You think so?"
I laugh softly, and walk back to the kitchen. I grab the glass of milk, and make my way out, making sure the lights are off.
"Jake," Jennifer whispers as I climb the stairs.
"Is Isa mad at me?"
"No, of course not, why would she be mad at you?"
"Well, she said we'd have our own little party since you and Chad were going to a party, too. But I fell asleep."
"No, princess, she wasn't mad at all. I took her with me."
"Oh, okay. Is she still awake?"
"She should be. You want to pop in and say good night?"
I take a detour to my room, and I stand in the doorway. I smile as I see Isa sitting at my computer desk, staring at the screen with a smile on her face.
"Hey, look who wanted to say good night," I say and she turns her head.
"Hey, sweetie," she smiles at us as she walks over to us.
"Hi Isa. I just wanted to say good night."
"Good night, princess."
I smile as I watch Isa lean forward, and peck Jennifer on the cheek. Jennifer smiles sleepily before laying her head on my shoulder.
"I'll be right back, baby," I tell Isabella as I hand her the glass, "here, I brought this for you."
"I can't drink all of this. It's massive," she says.
"I'll help you."
She giggles and I smile as I walk out. I make my way down the hall to Jennifer's room, and I push the door open. I walk over to her bed, and I put her down. She yawns softly as I pull the covers over her tiny body, tucking them around her. I lean down and press my lips to her forehead.
"Sleep tight, babe. We'll do something fun tomorrow."
"Okay," she says before closing her eyes.
I watch her settle into her pillows, and I smile. I stand up and turn to leave her room. I leave her door open a crack, before making my way down to my room. I walk in to find Isa sitting up against the bed with the glass of chocolate milk in her hand, and I smile.
"Did you put the tape in?" I ask her, and she nods before taking a sip from the glass, "okay, so we're all set?"
"Yup," she says as she puts it on the night stand.
"Lights on or off?"
"Off. I like the dark."
I smile at her, and I flip the light switch. I close the door softly, and I walk over to the bed. She turns the television on to give me a little light, and I crawl onto the bed with her. I settle down in a semi-sitting up position, and she curls up next to me. I wrap my arm around her waist, and she settles her head on my shoulder. I take the remote from her, and hit the 'play' button. I smile and put it down when a picture of Isabella and I comes up on the screen. I reach over for the glass of chocolate milk, and offer it to her. She smiles and takes another sip of it, before handing it back to me. I take a sip from it as well, before putting it back on the night stand and settling down with her.
As the tape plays out, a recreation of that night comes to mind. I close my eyes and I can almost feel her lips on mine, I can feel her hand on mine, I can feel the tears that trickle down her beautiful face. Every emotion and feeling I experienced that night comes back to me, and I feel as though I'm falling in love again. How did I get this lucky? I open my eyes, and look down at Isabella. I can see her subtly wiping her eyes, before returning it to the spot on my chest. From this position, I can see a shadow of the bruise that Tim left on her face. Suddenly, anger rushes through my veins. How could anybody hurt her this way? I'd never in a million years be able to comprehend it. I've known her for about four years now and it still doesn't make sense. It never will. In fact, the only thing that makes sense in this world is the fact that I'll love her. I'll love her always and forever.