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Posted on Sat Jul 11th, 2015 @ 4:52pm by Unawakened Melissa Wilson

Mission: Pre-Awakening
Location: Melissa's house
Timeline: June 22nd, 2010

The doorbell rang with less than it's usual fanfare. Typically, Kyle would have rushed to the door, followed closely by Lisa, each insisting that no one would ever want to visit the other. Melissa always stayed out of it. It was never for her, anyway.

Kyle was strangely absent from the debate today. Lisa still ran, of course, loudly shouting that she had it.

The confusion in her voice when she shouted up the stairs was clear. "Melissa?"

The dark-haired, bespectacled teen poked her head out of the room she was currently sharing with Lisa. "Yes?"

"It's... for you." Lisa exclaimed with shock and amazement.

It was a little insulting, though Melissa wasn't about to make an issue of it. She didn't expect a whole lot more from her older sister, truthfully.

Melissa's hair was showing a bit of grey, far beyond what most seventeen year old girls were used to having to deal with. Far more than most fourty year olds had to deal with, in fact. She had pulled it back to minimize the effect - and Lisa's laughter - but she hadn't been able to hide her blotchy complexion quite as easily. New zits had popped up overnight, the bane of any teenage girl. At least she didn't have any exams today to force her to go in to school.

That was the last thing she needed, given how she looked right now and the state of her reputation. She sighed, coming out of the room. She missed being able to hide in the background, invisible in plain sight.

The door, and Lisa in front of it, blocked identification of whoever was standing just outside the house, and though she came down the stairs toward her unknown visitor, she had no idea who would possibly be wanting to talk to her. She listened closely as she walked closer.

"Yeah, I think I heard your band last year." Lisa nodded. "You weren't bad. That kid, um.... what's his name... Darren Morales?"

"Devon Meyers." Jeff's voice filled in.

Melissa cringed, turning to head back up the stairs as quietly as possible.

"Yeah... he's kinda cu..." Lisa began, leaning against the door just enough to make the stairs visible.

"Melissa!" Jeff called out urgently.

She cringed a little more, slowly turning and looking very hesitantly at the door.

"Ohmygod, is this your boyfriend?" Lisa asked, her eyes wide and sparkling with a small laugh. "Dad said you had a boyfriend now."

"Shut up, Lisa." Melissa said with a quiet intensity.

"Do you want me to, like, give you guys my room or something?" Lisa offered, teasingly. Melissa wondered if she'd heard the rumous, or if that was just 'innocent' Lisa teasing.

"Shut. Up, Lisa." Melissa said slower. "Go away."

Lisa just laughed, making an exaggerated kissy face as her sister as she headed back in to the house. "Don't do anything I wouldn't do!"

Melissa rolled her eyes. She had a pretty good idea just how much that actually entailed. She stepped quickly out of the house, closing it behind her. It was only then that she actually looked at her ex-boyfriend.

One eye was dark, swollen and purple, and a bruise to match it coloured his opposite cheek. He stood uncomfortably, clearly in a bit of pain. "Hi." He said quietly.

"What happened to you?!?" Melissa gasped.

"I, um... well..." He scratched his head. "Your, uh, brother and your cousin weren't really... happy... about how things went between us... some things were said... it isn't really important." He pointed to the black eye. "This one was Valerie."

Melissa's own eyes widened. "Kyle... and Deo?"

"That your cousin's name?" Jeff shrugged. "Yeah. I guess so. Kyle's... um... kind of pissed about what happened at school."

Melissa frowned, folding her arms. "Did you come here for a reason, Jeff?"

He sighed, looking down. "I'm... sorry."

She blinked. She wasn't sure she heard that right.

"I... I acted out. I shouldn't have. I'm sorry." He repeated. "With that other guy, and with your brother and cousin. I... sort of have a temper." He looked up. "I need to work on it, I know, but... I was really hurt when I saw you kissing him."

"It wasn't anything more than that." Melissa said quietly. "It just sort of... happened. I didn't mean to cheat on you."

"I know." Jeff nodded. A tear rolled down from his good eye. "I mean, I believe that. I want to believe that. I shouldn't have hit him, or spread that rumour. I'll, um... I'll try to clear it up. To fix this. Val kinda told me off about it. She and I talked, and she sort of made me realize something."

Melissa looked at him for a moment. "What?"

"I did it all because I love you." Jeff said quietly. His eyes met hers, red and tormented behind the bruising. "I love you, Melissa. Even in spite of everything. I should hate you - part of me kind of does a little bit - but... I still love you. That's why it hurt so much."

"People who love someone don't try to ruin them." Melissa said quietly. She couldn't believe what she was hearing.

"I know." He nodded. "I'm sorry. I really am. If you never want to see me again, I'll understand."

She wasn't sure how to respond to that. Part of her wanted to tell him to go away, to explain how horrible what he had done was and how she couldn't deal with it. How she missed hiding in plain daylight at school, and how she hated everyone looking at her the way they did, thinking she'd had sex on the - fairly public, if quiet - beach at the edge of town. Then again, the fear that had driven her to him in the first place hadn't gone anywhere. Was Jeff her only chance at love? Tim couldn't offer her a future, Aunt Tina had made that clear, his health problems were too difficult, too complicated... Jeff didn't have any of those sorts of problems. Jeff was a safer bet.

But to take him back, after everything that happened...

"I.... don't know." She said quietly.

He hung his head. Another tear rolled down his cheek. "I understand. I'll go."

He turned, and panic flared through Melissa's chest. "Wait!"

He turned hopefully.

"I just... I... I have to think." Melissa said quickly. "I... don't know. Maybe. I'm not sure, I... have to think."

He nodded, taking a deep breath and giving her a weak smile. "Take all the time you need. I'll be here. I'm really sorry about what happened. Tell, um... tell Kyle and Deo that I'm sorry, too. I kind of behaved badly with them."

Melissa nodded silently.

Jeff offered another small smile. "I'll see you later, okay? Text me or call me if you want to study together for our math exam."

Melissa nodded, watching as he turned and walked away.

Her mind was left to try to figure out what, exactly had just happened.

Whatever it was, she had a feeling Deo and Kyle would have a few answers.


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