Love Story

A one-shot

Guess what?

I'm fucking pathetic. Wooo. And I shall tell you all why (because you're all dying to know).

Think of a gorgeous blonde, super model-like girl with the prettiest baby blue eyes ever seen. Then picture a gorgeous boy with tanned skin, light brown hair, and amazing gray-green eyes. THEN (this has a point, I promise) picture a medium-height girl with wavy reddish brown hair and boring gray eyes. The names of the people are as follows: Analea Lewis, Aidan Rozenmann, and Mallory Marise.

The first two are just absolutely perfect together, aren't they?

Well you can just go burn in hell if you think so.

Aidan was my boyfriend for one year before he dumped me during our senior year in high school and started going out with many, many girls; but mainly Analea Lewis. And, of course, I can't hate her, as much as I'd like to. She was the smartest girl in the class, the girl that everyone liked and couldn't hate. She was absolutely gorgeous and wore almost no make-up (which changed when she first dated Aidan). She and Aidan were so mix-matched, that it was endearing to everyone.

Except for me, the bitter ex-girlfriend. I, Mallory Marise, was the Captain of the Varsity Cheerleading in the fall, Dive in the winter, and Lacrosse in the spring. I was the jock that no one really expected, but still grudgingly respected. I had lots of friends, both guys and girls, but it became a bit awkward after I got dumped because they were Aidan's friends too.

Oh well. That's not really my problem.

Everyone was actually pretty surprised when Aidan broke up with me. After all, he was a huge jock too. He was the Captain of Varsity Football (figures) in the fall, Ice Hockey in the winter, and Crew in the spring. The difference between us was that he was well, well, well liked and that was enhanced when he was made captain in his own varsity sports.

Anyways, the bastard broke up with me on Halloween, which is probably the most random holiday ever, not something generic like Valentines' Day. The reason that it hurt so much was that October 31 was the day that we actually started to go out. I was with my friends in a haunted house, and believe me: you do not want to bring me into a haunted house. Why?

I get scared shitless at the littlest things. So we're all walking along, me screaming and cowering and cursing my friends for dragging me into this place when I suddenly lose them. Now I, being the strong and independent woman that I am, began to cry simply because there was nothing else to do. So now, I'm crouched on the ground, sobbing my eyes out: I was that afraid.

"Are you okay?" asked a voice. Here comes the fun part.

I screeched and jumped about a foot into the air (I am a flyer, after all) before launching my foot into the creeper's stomach, who ended up falling on his ass and not moving for an allotted amount of time. Breathing shakily, I stepped over his legs to get a closer look when I feel two hands grasp around my ankles, bringing me to the floor, causing me to scream again. This time, I'm under my creeper (who is actually around my age) and he's just staring down at me. We stay like that for a while.

"I hate haunted houses," I declared fearfully, my voice shaking a bit. My chestnut brown hair was escaping from the two French braids that someone plaited into my hair earlier, but I could care less.

I really could.

No, seriously.

"Then why the hell are you in one?" the stranger asked, his breath husky. It's probably 'cause I slammed my heel into his lungs, but I chose to believe that it was his fault.

"Because my friends are freaks who actually like being in a creepy abandoned house with creepy monsters popping out and scaring people shitless," I explained. He probably stared at me for a while (I don't know, it was too dark) before getting up and grabbing my arm to pull me up as well.

I was brushing dust off my jeans when someone or something shrieked in the distance. I screamed as well before clinging to the stranger (not the best of ideas, but I was scared). Instead of pushing me away, he wrapped his arms around my waist and stood there with me until I wasn't scared anymore.

"Take a few deep breaths," he told me, his voice right by my ear. I took one before something brushed against my calf, causing me to scream my girlyish scream. Hey, guess the deep breath helped! Not.

By now, I had started to not only scream, but scream profanities.

"SOMETHING JUST TOUCHED MY FUCKING LEG OH MY GOD I'M GONNA FUCKING DIE IN THIS HELL HOLE OH GOD OH GOD OH GOD WHAT IF THAT PIECE OF SHIT COMES BACK AND FUCKING RA- MMMM!"

The stranger, smart man that he is, planted his lips right on mine to keep be from continuing with my screech. Automatically, I let my eyes flutter shut as I wrapped my arms around his neck, his hands gripping my hips tightly. I felt his tongue lightly poke at my lower lip before I opened my mouth, allowing him entrance. As he began to explore my mouth, he started to walk me backwards until my back hit a wall (which, thank god, was not slimy). He pressed my hips against his, his mouth not once leaving mine.

Not that I complained, of course.

Our make-out session continued until someone called out (rather hysterically), "Mallory? Are you okay in there?"

Slowly and reluctantly- the boy was an amazing kisser- I broke away the kiss to try and look over his shoulder and squinted at the sudden light. "Anna?" I asked into the light. The boy also half-turned, his lower half still pressing against mine.

Once again, not that I minded.

"Oh God, Mallory, I am so unbelievably sorry that we dragged you in here," Anna continued, still not making an appearance. The boy grabbed one of the hands that was still around his neck, sent me a wink, and then began to lead me towards the light. He must be cocky, seeing as how he knew how my legs would shake after that kiss.

"Yeah, well you should be," I called back. "I nearly shitted myself when I lost you guys."

"And then you kicked me in the stomach," my stranger muttered under his breath. I heard it, and slapped him in the stomach, grinning when he winced. He led me over some lump on the ground, or at least tried to. I gulped nervously before letting go of his warm hand and just standing over the lump, determined not to look down at it. So I shut my eyes.

"Mon Dieu," I muttered in French, my first language. The stranger must've heard it because he stopped walking and turned backward, probably raising an eyebrow at my frozen figure. I don't know; my eyes were closed.

"Coming?" he asked in a slightly amused tone.

"Tais-toi, ce n'est pas drôle," I answered, reverting to French. "Mon Dieu, mon Dieu, mon Dieu."

Instead of answering, I just heard footsteps coming towards me. "Putain de l'enfer, NE ME TOUCHEZ PAS!" I shouted before someone scooped me up into their arms, eliciting a scream from me, which was quickly interrupted by the pressure of a pair of familiar lips on mine. I let out a sigh into the kiss before mumbling against his lips, "C'est vous. Merci Dieu."

"I don't speak French," he said right back into my lips. His grip tightened on my legs and waist as I wrapped my arms around his neck once more and half lifted myself out of his arms to kiss him better.

I was halfway through a moan when Anna's voice suddenly cut through. "Am I interrupting something?" she asked nervously, freaking me and the boy out so badly that he ended up dropping me onto the ground.

"Oww," I groaned, deciding to just lie down on the ground, which was thankfully lump-less. I actually ended up landed near Anna's feet, so I just looked up, thanking God that she wasn't wearing a skirt. "And yes, you were. It's your-" I pointed up at her, "fault that he-" I pointed to my stranger, "dropped me." I pointed to myself.

And who said that pointing is rude?

"Well since you got that," she gestured to the stranger, "out of this Haunted House, guess we should bring you in to some more." With that, she grinned and left.

"YOU DARE MOCK ME?!" I cried out, springing to my feet, "Après tout la merde tu mets-moi à travers?!" I quickly turned back to the stranger, gave him a quick peck on the lips (he deserved it) before running after Anna, whom I quickly caught and tackled to the ground, beginning my reign of pain (AKA tickling) upon her.

"Alors, qui est ce garçon?" Mina asked. She and I had frequent conversations in French because she was nearly fluent (she was in AP French, as she liked to say).

I wasn't really paying attention; too busy taking pictures for my photography class of the scenes of the hall at different angles. When Mina repeated her question, I didn't even look up. "Qui?" I asked absent mindedly.

"Le garçon de la maison hantée. Rappeles-tu?" Anna and Mary-Frances were now looking in our direction (Anna's locker is next to mine) after hearing the world, garçon, which they knew meant boy in French.

I scrunched my mouth to the side, focusing in on someone drinking from the water fountain. Looked like a freshman by the size of them. Right after I took my picture, Mina smacked the back of my head. "Ow!" I cried, turning back to my "friends". "Why, Mina?"

"Tu n'as pas répondu à mes questions," she replied smartly. "C'est la raison pour laquelle."

I pouted. "Tu es très mechante. C'est vraiment," I told her before going back to my project. When I refocused my camera, all I got were a pair of jean clad legs. "Excusez-moi, pouvez-vous aller?" I asked politely before swatting at their legs.

They didn't even budge, so I sneered at them before getting back up (I was sitting on the ground). As soon as my eyes locked with a pair of gray-green eyes, I was pushed up against the lockers, a familiar feeling coursing through me. Someone tugged my camera out of my hands (it wasn't him, his hands were on my waist) right before I wrapped my arms around his neck tightly as he attacked my lips.

What? We're teenagers; teenagers make out a lot.

"Aidan Rozenmann," he told me breathlessly when we broke apart. He rested his forehead against mine.

I smiled, my arms still loosely looped around his neck. "Mallory Marise," I said before pulling him in for another kiss.

Whoever took my camera also took a lot of pictures of the two of us.

And that's my story.

Not my entire story, but the story of how Aidan and I began dating until he broke up with me a year later. If you do the math, it means that 1) my friends took me to a haunted house on Oct. 30th and 2) we had school on Halloween.

But yeah, it's a year. Or at least ten months; the last two months of our relationship don't really count because Aidan would start to forget to call me, he'd forget our dates, or he just wouldn't really pay any attention to me at all. And I don't mean to sound like one of those attention-whores, but seriously, the boy would just tug on my hair and look off into the distance.

I guess I knew that we would break up soon with him acting like that; still didn't make it hurt less. Of course, when he did bring down the final judgment (I'm in AP English, shut up), I took it like a man woman well.

Of course, the next day I fell off the human pyramid that we were doing at practice (and I was at the top; damn). At least I wasn't sitting at home, watching chick flicks and eating ice cream. No, I didn't eat for almost a month and I showered for at least two hours everyday. That's what happens when I get depressed, and I would've kept it up if my mom hadn't told me that she would ban me from sports, which woke me up.

I realized that I shouldn't be wasting away for a boy. I was the captain of my sports, and I was going to stick to them. Thankfully, my grades hadn't dropped, so I was able to get right back into cheerleading, dive, and lacrosse. I was functioning like normal again. The only other time that I felt sad (not depressed anymore) was when Analea told everyone that she loved Aidan. That day (it was winter) I changed into my bathing suit for practice and then actually ended up falling into the pool. Into the shallow end.

Ouch.

But that's the end of my pathetic stage and also it was the end of my high school career. I graduated with high grades (I wasn't the valedictorian; some other girl was) and loads of colleges trying to recruit me for either lacrosse or dive. Cheerleading was where I drew the line; that was simply recreational.

After all of that Aidan drama, I decided that I deserved an out of the country experience, so I went back to France for college. I was going to Institut D'Arts Visuels and hopefully majoring in photography or something along those lines.

I was actually lucky enough to book a flight about an hour after my graduation ceremony, which I thought was just amazing. I really needed a break from America. My parents had set up part of it for me, like where I would be staying, the money transfer, all that stuff. I ended up living with my grandma, Alice, and I worked as a translator in a library near Grandmère's home. It was an easy job and I ended up earning a lot of money from it.

Of course, by the end of my sophomore year in college, I got a better job. I worked as a photographer and a design consultant for a popular French and English magazine, Au Printemps. In America, it was known as, Springtime, and it was mainly a fashion magazine. I stayed with it even after I graduated college, soon being bumped up all the way to Vice President, which I thought was pretty amazing.

And yes, I dated throughout college, but none of them really outshone Aidan in any way. Which was upsetting, but I accepted it, knowing that there was nothing like the power of the first love, or something.

Anyways, France is amazing, but I did miss America. I emailed and wrote to Anna, Mary-Frances, and Mina a lot, but I still missed seeing them. I guess my boss noticed this, because the next time a position in America opened, she automatically assigned it to me, no questions asked, which was absolutely fine with me. After Grandmère died a year ago, I was ready to move on once again.

I almost missed getting off the plane, I will tell you that right now.

There's a thing with planes and me: I always, always fall asleep on them. And I have sensitive ears, so I can't really listen to music loudly without it bothering my ears, so you can't hear it from my headphones. And I don't snore, so basically no one could tell that there was still a person on the plane until my elbow bumped the emergency button, signifying that someone was still dozing.

It was just a little bit embarrassing.

But, with some serious apologizing to the pilot, I made it off the plane safely enough to be tackled by a bubbly blonde.

"MALLORY!" Anna shrieked, nearly bringing me to the ground. I laughed and hugged her back.

"I missed you too, Anna," I told her before she held me out at arms' length, like a mother would to her daughter. Which is funny, because I'm older than her.

"You look so good," she said honestly, her brown eyes sparkling. She reached out and tugged some of my now loosely curled hair. "And you got tanned!" she added, pinching my cheek.

"Ouch, Anna!" I exclaimed, swatting at her hands. "Stop it!"

"AND YOU GOT A FRENCH ACCENT!" Anna screamed before I started laughing. Honestly, I spend four years in the country, and she expects me not to have an accent?

"Mallory est ici?" I heard a familiar person ask. "MALLORY, TU ES ICI!"

"Non, vraiment?" I called back in French, laughing. "Je n'avais pas réalisé que j'ai changé de pays." I said this all sarcastically as Mina ran up and hugged me, followed by Mary-Frances.

"I missed you guys," I told all three of my best friends, a huge smile on my face. "France was fun, but I was all alone without you three and- ANNA, YOUR HAIR IS STRAIGHT!" I shouted, pulling hard on a lock of her hair.

She winced before sticking her tongue out at me.

The four of us quickly found all my bags and loaded them up, talking nonstop the entire way.

I really love my friends.

I really hate my friends.

"Come on, Mallory!" Mary-Frances whined, holding up a black, slinky cocktail dress. "It'll be fun! Our entire senior class, give or take a few extras, will be there!"

"No."

"But you just got back from France! And don't you want to show off your killer tan?"

"No."

"And your French accent! Any guy would kill his wife to have sex with you and your accent!"

"You're creepy, and no."

"Mallory, tu vas à cette partie, si tu as un mot à dire ou non, ou bien je vais appeler tous les gars tu as déjà datée et leur dire tout sur le moment où tu es allé à l'école avec un mini-jupe sur un vent jour..."

"... D'accord."

Mina looked triumphant as she nonchalantly did her own makeup. In fact, she was doing her mascara while she threatened me. Weird.

"Yay!" Anna cried, clapping her hands in delight. She could be a bit blonde sometimes. When she suddenly got serious, I literally gulped. She plucked the dress from Mary-Frances' hands as well as a pair of shoes and a silvery necklace with an opening rose on it. She shoved the clothes into my arms and said one word: "Strip."

I stared at her, wide-eyed, until she started walking towards me. "OK, OK, the clothes are coming off!" I exclaimed as I hurried away from her. She grinned in victory before leaving the room to change into her own party outfit.

Mary-Frances wore a royal blue, strapless top and a pair of black slacks. She also wore a pair of gold heels that just showed off how long her legs really were. Mina wore a low-cut, purple dress that ended around her knees. She also wore a pair of gold heels and for the same reason. I was still slipping into the dress when Anna returned, her hair in (very attractive) curlers and her make-up in hand. She wore a cherry red, one-shoulder dress that ended at her knees. She wore heels, but they were silver instead of gold.

"I knew that dress would look good on you," Anna told me, applying mascara to her bottom and top lids. I blinked before walking over to the full length mirror, perfectly fine in my own pair of strappy, black heels. I wore a black, strapless, shirred dress that ended just above my knees with the sheer silk a bit longer than the under dress. The ribbon under the bust was silver in color with black designs done on it in little beads. Against this dress, I realized how much my hair had darkened in the last four years.

I stared at my reflection before sighing and reaching for some lip gloss. I was never a big fan on the make-up, and I wasn't going to start now. As I applied it, Anna got up and found some silver ribbons. She pulled up my mass of hair and somehow tied it up in a messy but sexy bun on my head. It wasn't so high that it was literally on the top of my head, but it was high enough to expose the back of my neck, where the strangely familiar necklace was. I quickly slipped in silver studs for my top piercing and then a pair of shiny, twisty drop earrings into my second hole.

"Ready, bitches?" I heard Mary call from the main room of the apartment. I grinned at her term of endearments for us before descending down the stairs. I admired my new home as I walked.

I guess I forgot to mention that. Well, before my friends told me about the party, I had prearranged an open house with a well known realtor, who managed to sell me my new, beautiful condo or apartment or loft or something. (I'm not very good with terminology.)

Anyways, we were now headed off to a very fancy ballroom, where the party was being held, as Anna had told me, seeing as it was her party. Holding my gold clutch, I quickly waved down a taxi, a skill that has never left me, and will never leave me.

After being kissed, hugged, and/or squealed at by the fiftieth person, I decided that I deserved a small break. Politely excusing myself from none-other-than Analea Lewis, I retired to the bar where I asked for a glass of water with a lemon.

"What, no drinking?" Anna asked, asking for a martini as she slid into the seat next to mine.

I shot her a look. "Trust me. I had my fill of alcohol in France," I told her, smiling at the bartender when he set down my drink. I quickly plucked the lemon from the side of the glass, put it in between my lips, and bit down, enjoying the sour taste. Anna made a face.

"I still can't understand how you enjoy killing your mouth," she said honestly, eating her olive. I finished my lemon and shrugged before taking a sip of my water.

"So...," Mina started, sitting in the seat on the other side of me. I traced my pinky along the edge of my cup, waiting for her to go on. "I saw you talking to Analea out there," she said, ordering her own alcoholic drink. I nodded, chewing on an ice cube.

"Yup," I agreed, "She seemed well. Has Aidan proposed, or have they broken up?" I asked nonchalantly, even though my heart twisted in my chest. Little details that they did not need to know.

"They broke up," Mary-Frances told me, coming to stand with us. She had a glass of champagne in her hand, so she was all set. I nodded again, asking for more water.

"Aidan's going to be here, isn't it?" I asked quietly, accepting my drink and tracing my pinky along the edge of my glass. "That's why you all wanted to make sure that I came to this party." I sighed and blew away some of my bangs. "You wanted us to talk, though I don't see why," I said, casting a sidelong glance at my friends.

"Well you two dated for a while," Mina said.

"We dated for a year-barely. That's not that a while."

"What about the way you were after the breakup?" Mary-Frances wanted to know.

"I'm a girl," I said with a shrug, watching as Anna dug through her purse. "Girls tend to get more emotionally attached to relationships than guys do. And so, detachment equals short state of depression."

"Ah-HAH!" Anna exclaimed, shocking the hell out of me. I jumped about an inch off my chair before smoothing my dress down and crossing my legs again. She had come up with a tube of Cover Girl Outlast; bright red Cover Girl Outlast to be exact.

"Um... yay?" I tried. She blinked at me before uncapping it and drawing my face towards hers. She started with my bottom lip, easily coloring it red before she let go and wordlessly told me to rub my lips together. I did so and she grabbed my face again, this time doing the top before coating the bottom with some sheer over gloss. I rubbed my lips together again before shrugging. "I can still drink water, right?" I asked her. She nodded and put her make up away.

Mina and Mary-Frances had not given up on the Aidan argument. "Well, you should still talk to him," Mina told me.

"Why? There's no reason to; we dated, he dumped me, I cried, the end," I replied, looking at her from over my shoulder before sipping my water.

"Why not? After all, everyone thought that the two of you were eventually going to get married," Mary-Frances said nonchalantly as I choked on water.

"Excuse me?" I asked after clearing my airway. Mary-Frances just nodded her black head.

"Everyone thought it. Seniors, juniors, and even some of the sophomores and freshmen," she continued, ticking them off on her fingers. I coughed again before looking out onto the dance floor.

"Well, I'm going to go dance," I declared, pushing my chair away from the bar. "I'll see you girls later."

It was interesting to see how many people from my photography class actually got married to each other. Literally, there are like... at least thirteen couples now from the class of thirty. I was dancing with an unmarried boy from my class when Mary-Frances swooped in and pushed me to the ground.

Seriously. I was on the floor. Staring up at my friend.

"Mary, you're mean to me," I told her as Tom, the guy from my photography class, helped me up. Mary-Frances glared at Tom before shoving me back to the floor.

"Fine!" I shouted, crossing my arms like a child. "Maybe I like being on the floor! Thank you, Mary-Frances!"

"You're welcome," Mary-Frances answered, tossing her curly brown hair. I sent her a look; one day that girl will learn the meaning of sarcasm.

I thought about getting back up, but I quickly shot down the idea because Mary-Frances would probably push me down again. So I sat on the ground until Mary-Frances looked away; as soon as she turned her head, I shot up and ran out of the ballroom as fast as my heels would take me. I ended up on this terrace-yard thingy.

Heaving a large breath, I wrapped my arms around myself. Despite the chill, I started breathing heavily and slowly out through my mouth to see the white fog my breath caused.

"Enjoying yourself?"

Instead of screaming this time, I just spun around punched the person in the gut. When wearing heels, jumping into the air is definitely not the best idea.

Really. It isn't.

Anyways, the guy who crept up behind me made an 'oof' sound before catching my wrist, holding it before gingerly removing it from his stomach.

"Still the same, huh Mallory?" Aidan asked, rubbing his stomach with a grin. Oh God, he looks better than he did in high school. His light brown hair was shorter, showing more of his amazing eyes. And also, he was wearing a suit. A man in a suit is sexy.

And so, I stared. After a few moments, I blurted out: "What the fuck are you doing outside?"

One of his eyebrows shot up. "What the fuck are you doing outside?" he asked, amused.

"I'm running away from Mary-Frances. She keeps pushing me to the ground," I told him like it was the most obvious thing in the world ('cause it was).

He blinked at me. "That sounds like fun," he replied slowly before changing the subject abruptly. "Who was the guy you were dancing with?"

"Tom."

"Tom who?"

"Tom from my photography class."

"Tom who?"

I glared at him. "Thomas Walters, age 22, brown hair, blue eyes, 5'11". Happy?" I gave a fake smile at the end, just for him.

Wow I hate how much I still love him.

Aidan stared at me. "Are the two of you dating?" he asked.

"What the hell do you care? Why the hell do you care? What, after breaking my heart," that was not supposed to be said, "you suddenly decide to become my big brother?"

Aidan rolled his eyes. "Look, I was just curious-"

"What gives you a right to be curious out my life?" I demanded. "After hurting me like that-" I broke off to take a deep breath, pushing some stray hair back before talking again. "Look, I'm sorry I lost my temper," I said quietly. "The breakup just affected me badly."

Aidan did not like this. He paused for a long time, up to the point that I thought he was going to leave, before hanging his head. "I'm sorry," he said sincerely. "I didn't mean to hurt you like that."

Awkwardly (it's always awkward with an ex), I reached out and patted his shoulder. "It's okay. We only dated for ten months after all and-"

"Ten months?" he interrupted, his head shooting up to glower down at me from his superior height. "We went out for a year, Mallory," he spat.

"What do you care?" I spat right back, retracting my hand and crossing my arms over my chest. It was a typical girl move, but that's what happens when you have estrogen pumping through your veins. "You broke up with me remember? And besides, it felt like ten months. You didn't even care about me for the last two months!"

"I was trying to get you to break up with me, all right?" he asked, running a hand through his messy hair. It was incredibly sexy, but I tried not to let that get to me.

"Well it obviously didn't work!" I retorted. "And besides, why the hell would you try to do that? Did you really not love me?" I hated how my voice broke on love. I really did. And I also hated how his gray-green eyes softened when he noticed it.

I hate that he still pays attention to the things that I hate.

He sighed deeply and sat down on a bench, his arms braced on his knees and his head hung again. He clasped and unclasped his hands before I got annoyed and just held them together. I hated how much I wanted to touch him again after barely grazing his skin, so I retracted my hands quickly, busying them with my necklace before I suddenly remembered that it was the one he had given me for Valentines' Day. The memory came to me when I caught him staring at it.

Aidan spoke again. "I never stopped loving you, Mallory," he said softly to the ground. "I wanted to marry you, I really did. But then I realized that I hadn't given you enough options or enough time to date other boys."

"Did you want-?" I asked quietly, a little (or a lot) hurt, before he cut me off.

"No! No, I didn't. But I wanted you to be happy. I didn't want you to be tied down. So I tried to be a bad boyfriend, but I could never cheat on you; so I broke up with you when you didn't break up with me. I dated those girls-"

"And Analea," I muttered under my breath, crossing my arms over my chest again, this time to keep warm. He looked up and smiled wearily before continuing with his explanation.

"I dated so many girls to try and give you a hint. It was supposed to make you realize that you could move on from me and that I had moved on from you. Which was a lie. And it didn't work. That actually made some sick part of me happy; that you hadn't stopped loving me either. But when you fell from the pyramid after we broke up...," I winced, that had really hurt, "or when you didn't eat for a month- Mina told me- or when you fell into the pool. I hated that you were so affected by the break-up."

"Well I'm sorry for falling in love after ten months," I mumbled bitterly, looking in the other direction. Aidan suddenly sprang up and grasped my arms, pushing me against a wall.

"We dated. For a year. Mallory," he said slowly, his hot breath on my mouth. I ignored the dry feeling in my throat and glared at him.

"You dated for a year. I dated for ten months," I corrected him, my voice just as dangerous as his. He narrowed his eyes at me before pushing his lips onto mine. My cry was muffled as I tried to swat at him with my hands, but he wrapped his arms around my waist tightly, pressing my body to his. Eventually, I relented and kissed him back; knowing that whatever I would do would be useless.

After a while, he pulled away slowly, resting his forehead against mine as I panted. "I was planning on proposing to you at the end of senior year," he told me quietly, lacing his fingers with mine. "But you left right after graduation and I couldn't find you. I bothered Anna and Mina and Mary-Frances for years, trying to get them to tell me where you went, but they wouldn't." His slow grin made my knees weak. "When I forced it out of them that you went to France, I just about bought my own plane before Anna told me that you were coming back for her party."

I averted my eyes from his, staring at our entwined hands. "My cell phone number never changed," I said softly, sucking on the inside right corner of my mouth.

His groan was not what I expected. "I knew it," he muttered, exasperated. "I tried to call you, but Mina or Anna or Mary-Frances would keep telling me that it changed, or that your cell had broken, or that you didn't have signal where ever you were, and that I should trust them." He surprised me again by kissing me softly on the lips and pulling away before I could react. He locked his eyes with mine. "I'm sorry, Mallory. I really, really am. I love you."

My mouth twisted as I thought, like it usually did. I don't know whether or not it bothered Aidan, but it probably didn't, seeing as how I used to do it all the time when I was in serious thought.

Honestly? I still loved him and I knew that, but I never expected him to actually want me back. He was my childhood sweetheart and also my first love, so I knew that I'd always miss him, but...

But...

"Mallory?" he asked, concerned. I hadn't even realized that I started to cry until Aidan wiped away some of the tears that were streaking down my cheeks. Thank God for water proof mascara.

"I love you," I said with a wavering voice. I threw my arms around his neck and hugged him tightly. "I love you, I love you, I love you," I gasped out before Aidan pressed his lips against mine again.

When he pulled away, there was a serious expression on his face. The irrational and childish part of me thought that he was going to break my heart again, saying that he didn't want someone so clingy or annoying. I tried to put it to the back of my mind by shutting my eyes tightly.

I don't know how much time had passed while I had my eyes closed until I heard someone hiss, "Mallory!" My eyes shot open at that and widened when I saw that every single member of the party was now gathered around us or crowded in the garden entry way. I looked around for Aidan and caught Anna's eye. She grinned wickedly and pointed downward. Following her direction, I looked to the ground.

Aidan was kneeling down with a sheepish grin. 'Sorry,' he mouthed, quirking his eyebrows in reference to our audience. Then he smirked and looked up to me.

"Mallory Marise, je t'aime," he began in perfect French, bringing a fresh batch of tears to my eyes. I covered my mouth with my hands to keep from gasping aloud. "J'ai passé du temps avec la plus étrange des enseignants et des enfants-" I choked out a laugh when Mina heard it and shouted out, "Hey!", "de sorte que tous les je pourrait un jour aller en France pour gagner tu rappeler. Cela a été mon plan jusqu'à ce que tes amis m'ont dit finalement que tu as été le retour à la maison. J'ai été si heureux; heureux que je ne l'avais été depuis que nous avons rompu." Absently I heard Mina murmuring to Anna and Mary-Frances everything that Aidan was saying, but in English. All my attention was on the light brown haired boy in front of me who was now producing a small, velvety black box.

"Mallory, je vous aime vraiment, et je voudrais être avec vous pour le reste de ma vie," he said softly, looking up to meet my eyes.

"Pas ma vie?" I asked coyly, a small smile forming on my lips. Aidan grinned outright at that and shook his head.

"Tu peux tomber malade de moi bientôt, mais je tu aime toujours," he told me sincerely. He opened his little box. There, nestled comfortably, sat a silver, tension-set ring with a small, nearly-translucent blue diamond on it. "Vas-tu me marier, Mallory, même après toutes les merdes que tu es-il arrivé à cause de moi?"

I bit my lip before I grinned and nodded. "Oui, tu stupide garçon, je vais tu marier," I told him happily before opening my arms for him. He stood up and pulled me close to him, his lips crashing to mine. Once Mina finished telling the crowd everything that Aidan had said, everyone broke out into applause for us. I felt something cool sliding onto my left ring finger before remembering something about tension-set rings.

"Is this titanium?" I asked warily, pulling away from him to eye my fiancé.

Fiancé. Wow.

Aidan grinned slowly and shook his head. He leaned forward to whisper into my ear. "Silver," he breathed before nibbling on my ear lobe.

I gasped, half in pleasure and half in shock. Silver tension-set rings were the most expensive because the metal was much softer than titanium. It would take more silver to create the same ring out of titanium. Stupid boy was already spending money on me.

"What would you have done if I hadn't said yes?" I asked him, wrapping my arms around his neck. He removed his mouth from my ear to face me.

"Oh you wouldn't have said no," he told me confidently before kissing me again. I rolled my eyes before kissing him back until I was ripped away by Anna, who tackled me into a hug. Mina and Mary-Frances joined her and soon I was basically being suffocated by my best friends.

"I'm so happy for you!" Anna shouted.

"Thanks," I told her with a smile before I remembered something. "Mary, why did you keep pushing me to the floor?" I asked her.

"Because Aidan had just come in and I didn't want him seeing you and Tom dancing," she replied. I rolled my eyes before Aidan pulled me out and wrapped his arms around my waist.

"I love you," he said into the crook of my neck.

"I love you too," I whispered, wrapping my arms around his neck. I smiled devilishly at what I was about to do. "And just so you know," I began, "I've dated enough boys. My longest relationship was actually with Tom, and it lasted four months." I laughed when I felt his back stiffen a little bit.

"You're never going near him again," he told me. I smiled at him before pecking his lips; something I did when we first met.

"It's okay, je t'aime plus," I said, disengaging myself to tug on his hand. "But I'm not going to stop dancing, whether it be with you or not."

"No, it's going to be with me." He walked me halfway when we suddenly ran into Analea, who immediately glanced at our entwined hands and the silver ring glinting on my finger.

Awkward.

"Um... hello, Analea," I began slowly, not really knowing what to say.

"Hi... Mallory," she said, just as slowly. She shifted her position before asking, "Can I speak to you privately?"

"Sure," I said, letting go of Aidan's hand to follow the blonde beauty. I could feel my self esteem dropping when she turned to face me.

Analea let out a breath. "I'm completely over Aidan," she said bluntly. I opened my mouth to speak, but she shook her head. "I want you to know that now. I'm completely over him, and I will not interfere in any way. I promise you that, and I wish the two of you luck," she told me with a smile. I smiled back and thanked her, because what she said was really kind.

And I might've believed her if I hadn't caught her glancing wistfully over at Aidan, who was talking with one of our guy friends, Chris.

My mouth twisted. So she still has feelings for him, I thought. I glanced at the ring on my finger. What if he's not over her? What if... what if he just feels bad for me?

What if he doesn't love me?

"Analea...," I began slowly, not knowing how to say this. "A-Aidan might still have feelings... for you." When I saw her raise an eyebrow, I continued. "I mean... you guys dated a lot during high school, and Aidan is also a really good person, and he might just be trying to patch things up with me, but maybe who he wants is you and..." I stopped talking, because now I was crying.

Almost right after the first tear dropped, I felt two warm arms enlace my waist. "Baby, what's wrong?" Aidan asked me, even though at first I thought he was talking to Analea.

I'm really not a confident girl, as you can tell, and I guess I always second-guess myself with people that I care about. Or, at least, that's what Mina tells me.

"Yeah," I said, sniffing, "I'm fine." When I looked up at Analea, she just gave me a slightly sad smile before telling Aidan that she was happy for us.

"Thank you," he told her. "I appreciate it." Analea smiled again before leaving, just causing me to cry more.

"Baby, seriously, is something wrong?" Aidan asked, concern lacing his voice. "Do you miss her that much?" he asked, taking a (very) wild guess. "'Cause I can ask her to come back, if you really want to talk to her-"

"No," I told him, turning so that I could bury my face into his chest. "No, that's not it." I didn't want Analea to have to be with Aidan without really being with him. Because I knew what it felt like not to have your first love.

Holding me, Aidan changed the subject. "So when am I moving in?" he asked. I let out a small laugh at the randomness of his topic.

"Whenever you want," I replied, just listening to his heartbeat. "Where are you living now?"

"I've been staying in a hotel, actually," he said. "I just got back from a trip, and I didn't feel like getting an apartment yet. The manager hates me." Aidan laughed, causing my heart to swell with happiness, however corny that sounds. I really loved his laugh. "I'm sure he'll be glad that I'm gone." He pressed a kiss to the top of my head.

"I love you."

A/T: Goodness, that took a long time to write! But it's over now, and I'm happy(ish) with it :)

Did you know that it was supposed to be a Halloween one-shot?

Yeah, it obviously failed in that aspect.

Oh well. 12 pages (including the author's time). The most I've ever written :D

Be honored.