Authors: Rachel Ryan
Pieces of Me
By Rachel Ryan
Copyright © 2015 Rachel Ryan
All rights reserved.
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This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
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This ebook is written in Australian English and contains Aussie spelling and some Aussie slang words.
“Abbi! Are you even listening to me?”
Glancing over at my friend Lacie, I can see that she’s totally pissed with me. She was right in the middle of some story about how her Mum and Dad won’t let her go to Grace Morgan’s party on Saturday. You know, end of the world stuff for a seventeen year old girl.
Rolling my eyes, I turn to her.
“Why do you care anyway? Grace is a bitch to you. Why would you want to go to her party and watch her make out with Corey all night?”
Corey Jackson is Grace Morgan’s jock boyfriend and I swear every time I see them they are playing tonsil hockey. And Grace’s parties are always the same. They start out with games and alcohol and by the end of the night it’s one big make out session for all the couples. We normally leave before it gets to that stage as we are both single.
I really don’t understand why Lacie wants to go to this party so bad. Grace has been a total bitch to her since we were twelve years old. Five years later and nothing has changed. Grace is still the most popular girl in school, for some unknown reason, and she still treats Lacie like crap. I actually think her hatred toward Lacie has become stronger over the years and I suspect it may have something to do with the fact that Lacie and Corey are good friends. They have lived next door to each other since they were babies and their parents are close friends. Naturally, they have spent quite a lot of time together over the years; their families go on a lot of holidays together. I think Grace is totally jealous of Lacie.
“I know they will be making out all night, but I still want to go.” Lacie has had a huge crush on Corey for years, but she has never had the guts to tell him how she feels. I don’t understand how he hasn’t figured it out yet, she’s always shy and nervous around him and I often catch her staring at him in class. He would have to know. Obviously, Grace has figured it out and that’s why she tries to make Lacie’s life a living hell. That’s why I can’t understand why she would want to go to her party.
I turn back to the person that had distracted my attention from Lacie’s story. Jake Lewis, my best friend. Jake and I have the same kind of relationship as Lacie and Corey. Our parents are good friends and our families have pretty much done everything together my whole life. We don’t live next door to each other but we have lived in the same street since we were six years old. We basically bonded over our love of football and have been inseparable since then. Well, that is until Jake discovered other girls. From about the age of thirteen he has always had some girl hanging off him. He is the typical popular jock of the school. All of the girls want him and all of the guys wish they were him.
Jake, Grace and Corey are sitting on the other side of the school courtyard at the Jock’s table and Jake’s current girlfriend, Vanessa James, is sitting in his lap running her hands through his hair as he tries to have a conversation with Corey. She’s so clingy, it’s really quite disgusting. They’ve only been together for a few weeks, I guess for him that’s a record so she probably feels quite special. He normally only spends a couple of weeks with a girl and then he moves on to the next. Any other guy that goes through that many girls in such a short time would disgust me, but I could never feel that way about Jake. Sure, he’s a bit of a male slut, but I don’t think he sleeps with all of them. At least, I hope he doesn’t. I don’t know what it is about him, but I could never hold something like that against him. I guess because I can see how the girls in school throw themselves at him and I know he doesn’t disrespect them by alluding to any kind of serious commitment. But for some reason, none of the girls have lasted any longer than a couple of weeks, until now.
Jake’s brown eyes suddenly turn to me as he notices me watching him. He flashes me one of his signature crooked, dimpled grins and raises his hand in a little wave. I wave back just as Vanessa looks up and glares at me. God, where do they find these girls? They have so much self-confidence and yet at the same time they are totally insecure about their boyfriends having female friends. As I watch them, I wonder what Vanessa has that the other girls don’t. It’s definitely not a brain or a nice personality; apart from Grace, she is one of the nastiest skanks in school.
Forcing my eyes back to Lacie I find her watching me with a strange expression on her pretty face.
“What’s with you today?”
Shaking my head I reply.
“Nothing’s wrong. I just don’t see what Jake sees in Vanessa, she’s a total airhead, plus she just seems so high maintenance.”
Lacie smiles knowingly. “You’re not jealous of Vanessa are you?”
My laugh is hollow. “As if I would be jealous of her. I’ve told you before Lacie, me and Jake are just friends. I don’t feel that way about him.”
She isn’t buying it. Apart from Jake she knows me better than anyone and obviously, my denial is not completely believable.
“Mmhm. Keep telling yourself that.”
I look down at the ground, letting my long dark hair fall forward and cover my eyes, which would completely give me away right now. When I raise my eyes back to Jake, he is watching me, his brows drawn together.
“It must be some kind of agreement between all of the jocks that they are only going to date the ditsiest, bitches in the school.” Standing up from the table she grabs her bag, “Come on, let’s get out of here.”
I sling my backpack over my shoulder and dump my rubbish in the bin as we walk toward our next class, giving Jake and his skank girlfriend one last glance.
When classes are finished for the day, I walk to the parking lot to wait for Jake. He drove today, so I find his brand new blue SUV in the parking lot and pull out the latest novel I’m reading to entertain me while I wait for him. Five minutes later, I look up to see him strolling across the school grounds.
God! He has turned into such a good looking guy.
He plays football, so he has developed quite a muscular physique. On top of his 6’2 frame, dark brown hair, gorgeous brown eyes and golden skin, the extra muscle has just made him…he is just…hot. I’ve been noticing this a little too much lately and often find myself just watching him. He has caught me checking him out a few times, but he doesn’t seem to mind.
“Hey, Shorty. Have you been waiting long?”
Shaking my head, I tuck my book into my bag and wait for him to unlock the doors before climbing up and settling into the passenger seat.
“Abbi, are you okay?”
“Yeah, I’m fine. Why do you ask?”
“I don’t know. You kind of look…I don’t know, a little sad.”
“Jake, I’m fine. Just drive, already.”
Chuckling softly he reverses out of the parking lot and we head toward home.
We sit in silence for the first few minutes and every now and then I look over at him to see him watching me with a strange expression on his handsome face. I know I’ve been acting weird lately, but I don’t know how to act around him anymore.
For the past few months I have been feeling a little confused about my feelings toward Jake. He’s been my best friend for so long, but recently, I have been noticing things about him that I hadn’t noticed before. The way his shirts cling to his biceps and the way his jeans hug his small, firm butt, his addictive, manly, woody scent. But most of all, the way I feel when I’m around him; I feel nervous, my stomach full of butterflies. My body just seems to be more aware of his presence. I have known him for so long and never had these feelings around him until recently. I don’t know if it’s just a phase I’m going through, where I’m beginning to notice boys a lot more, hormones maybe. The thing is though, I only feel this way around Jake. No other boy has ever made me feel that nervous, or excited. It kind of scares me a little because I’ve only ever thought of him as my best friend. I don’t want to be feeling this way about him and jeopardise the great relationship we have. He’s always been there for me when I needed him, and I would hate to think of my life without him in it. Besides, I don’t think he could ever see me as more than just a friend, anyway. He goes for the good looking blondes, who are popular and easy. Why would he ever notice me with my plain dark brown hair and blue eyes? I don’t have huge boobs, or long legs. My boobs are a very practical B cup and I am rather short. Hence the nickname he has graced me with for the last couple of years.
“So are you going to Grace’s party tomorrow night?”
Shrugging my shoulders, I turn to look at him. “I don’t know. It depends if Lacie’s allowed to go.”
“If she isn’t, we could just go by ourselves.”
Laughing nervously, I say. “And watch you and Vanessa make out all night? No thanks.”
He looks back at the road, but not before I see the hurt in his deep brown eyes.
“Vanessa won’t be there. She’s going to her Grandparents for the weekend.”
“Oh.” I try to hide my smile by looking out my window. We haven’t spent much time together since he started seeing Vanessa, due to her being high maintenance and all. I’ve actually really missed him.
“Please come. I’ve hardly seen you the last few weeks. I want you to go with me.”
My smile gets bigger at his words and I continue to stare out the window, my heart fluttering at the thought of him wanting to spend time with me.
“I guess I can go with you.”
“Good. It will be fun.” Now that I know I’ll be spending the night with Jake, without Vanessa hanging off of him, I am actually looking forward to the party.
As we drive through town, rock music blaring from the speakers, I realise just how much I value our friendship. We have never pretended with each other, always being honest even if it might hurt the others’ feelings. Many times I have told him that his current girlfriend is a whore, or he has told me that he doesn’t like my outfit. But, for some reason, our complete honesty never comes between us, no matter how hurtful it could be. As I peek a glance at him, I realise this is the first time I have actually hidden my feelings and the truth from him. There’s no way I could tell him the truth about this though. This could be something that could eventually come between us. The fact that I am starting to lust over my best friend could mean the end of our friendship.
He pulls up out the front of my house and I realise that my parents aren’t home yet.
“Do you want to come in and watch a movie?”
He smiles and switches off the engine.
I climb down from his car, slinging my backpack over my shoulder and walk toward the front door. My parents are still at work and my younger sister Cameron spends the afternoons at a friend’s house, so we will have the place to ourselves. I shouldn’t be excited about that thought, but I am.
Jake chooses a movie for us to watch while I grab some chips and sodas from the kitchen and then head up to my room. As I reach my open door, the sight before me stops me in my tracks. Jake is lying on my bed, facing the television in the corner of the room and my heart almost leaps out of my chest. He looks so comfortable, sprawled out on top of my polka dot comforter, one ankle crossed over the other and his hands tucked behind his head. As if he can sense me watching him, he turns to look at the door. I blink and snap out of my daze before walking into my room. Glancing at the television, I can see that he has chosen one of our childhood favourites; ‘The Goonies’. I place the bag of chips and his can of soda in his lap while I climb over him to get to the other side of the bed.
As I try to climb over him, I place my right leg and right hand on the other side of his body, I suddenly realise how close I am to him and how easy it would be to just lean down a few inches, and lower my body over his. As I close my eyes, the thought excites me but also scares me and I freeze, amazed that I am still straddling him and that I just had that thought about my old friend. When I eventually open my eyes again, I see that he has now risen so that he is leaning on his elbows and his face is only inches from mine, his beautiful chocolate eyes studying me. His lashes lower and his intense gaze lingers on my mouth as I suddenly snap out of my daze. My heart races as I leap to the other side of the bed. I am so embarrassed that I let him affect me like that and even more, that I actually let him see how much he affects me.
I get comfortable on my pillows, and try to focus on the movie, but I can feel his eyes on me. I am all of a sudden feeling very self-conscious and I glance nervously at him to see him watching me with a strange expression. He almost looks angry. Turning back to the movie, I sip on my soda, trying to settle the nervous flutters in my stomach. I can’t believe the urges that I am starting to feel take over my body. I need to remember that Jake is my best friend and nothing more. But laying this close to him, on my bed, is only making it worse.