Tales of a Broken Soul
Leah is plagued by her memories. Leaving La Push behind, she strives for a new life in New York. But when she returns for her brother’s graduation, her life gets irreversibly turned upside down.
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I walked home feeling like the biggest idiot on earth. I overreacted and either scared Mike half to death or sent him away for good. And I didn’t even want that any longer. I no longer wanted to scare him away-I was finally able to realize that. Unfortunately, my realization came a day or so too late.
Even if I didn’t want to freak Mike out I still didn’t know if I wanted him to stick around. I didn’t love him and I didn’t have any reason to, but I had to admit that I liked him. He was nice and seemed to genuinely like me. But that wasn’t enough. When I loved Sam I just knew it. There was something to him that stood out and immediately drew me to him.
Now that I thought about it, what I felt with Mike wasn’t like that at all. It was different strange and I had no idea what to d o with it.
I let out a sigh and rubbed my face. Mike didn’t even get to have his week. Maybe he didn’t even want it anymore. I wasn’t sure how I felt about that, but I knew that I didn’t like it.
I was tired and weary by the time I walked through my doorway. Seth and mom were back at home by then and sat up from their place on the couch in shock when I walked into the room.
“Honey,” my mom started. She glanced at the clock out of the corner of her eye before continuing. “It’s only seven. Did your date end early?” From the expression on my face they must have assumed what happened-or had at least gotten the general idea. They didn’t pester me any further, but I could see a hint of disappointment on their faces.
I turned away quickly and ran up the stairs and into my bedroom. Slamming the door behind me, I stomped into my room.
I pressed my back against the wall and slid down until I was sitting on top of the cold, hard floor. I brought my knees up to my chest and tried to stay calm. As much as I tried to stay calm, the tears unfortunately won out and I immediately became a fountain.
I buried my head in my knees and squeezed my eyes shut. I told my self over and over again that this wasn’t a big deal. I hurt Mike, but I had done so in the past.
I was angry. I was angry that he kissed me. I was angry that I hadn’t made up my mind and he tried to make it up for me. Sure, I liked kissing him, but that was beside the point. I wasn’t ready for it. I wasn’t over Sam and kissing Mike started a chain reaction in my head. The kiss made me imagine another pair of lips over mine and I freaked out. I was enraged that he accidentally forced that upon me.
I opened my eyes and slid down even further. My back was against the floor and my limbs were spread out.
In my head there were a multitude of questions flying around.
Was Mike angry with me?
Was Mike afraid of me?
Were Seth and mom angry with me?
But first and foremost: What was I going to do?
I groaned and rolled over onto my stomach.
My head hurt. My chest hurt. And an infernal nagging was sounding in the back of my head. I was hurting inside and for once I knew exactly why; I didn’t like loose ends. I had no idea where I stood with Mike and I was dying from the agony of not knowing. And I couldn’t stop imagining his hurt face when I broke away from him. His frown, the sagging of his shoulders, his confused and sorry eyes …but the aura of misery that surrounded him was worst of all. I cou ld almost hear his thoughts.
I’m sorry Leah!
Please don’t go!
I clamped my hands over my head and gritted my teeth together. Tears stung my eyes again and I wanted to hit something.
Oh god, I was burning from the inside out.
“Should we talk to her?”
“Nah, I don’t know what Mike did, or if he even did something, but she looked a little pissed so I wouldn’t talk to her.”
I sighed and tried to listen to more of my mother and Seth’s conversation but they moved further down the hall and out of ear shot. The mention of Mike’s name shot pinpricks down my spine. I covered my eyes with my hands and tried to ignore the twisting feeling in my gut.
I suddenly snapped up strait and jumped off the floor and onto my feet. I couldn’t take it anymore. I had to see him. I had to go to Mike’s house.
I yanked the door open and rushed down the hall to where I heard Seth and mom go. I burst into the room and demanded to know the address of where Mike lived.
I was quickly told the answer by my two immediate, relieved and giddy family members. I grabbed my keys and rushed out the door without a second thought.
And I didn’t think again until I already parked my car and was bursting through his front door-which thankfully wasn’t locked.
“Mike I have to-” I started to say. Then I blinked and realized where I was and what I just did. My mouth dropped open when I saw Mike sitting on his couch, staring at me with shock.
We both stayed in place for a few minutes, gaping at each other and wondering what to say. My heart was pounding in my chest and my face turned beet red. My hand squeezed the fabric of my dress so hard that my nails almost ripped a hole.
I finally gathered enough of my shattered ego back up and straightened my back. “What?” was all I managed to squeak out, though. His mouth snapped closed and he scratched his head.
“You suddenly burst into my living room and that’s supposed to be normal?” he asked. He raised his eyebrow curiously.
I just shrugged in response and stumbled over to his couch before flopping down on the seat next to him. If I had to stand any longer I was sure my legs would snap in half. He shuffled in his seat a little at our proximity to each
“I’m so sorry, Mike,” I blurted out. I turned my head so I could see his torn expression. My brain was jumbled up and all I wanted was his approval of my apology. “I’m really sorry! Don’t be mad,” I whimpered. “Please?”
I could tell he wasn’t sure if I was being completely truthful or not. I was going crazy in my seat waiting for an answer from him.
He nodded hesitantly before glancing away awkwardly. Something in me broke when he wouldn’t look at me directly. I could take pain, sadness or extreme mood swings any day, but awkwardness wasn’t something I was very comfortable with. I squirmed in my seat and bit the side of my cheek. It felt as though something heavy was weighing down my chest.
“It’s not because of the-er-what you did, really,” I blabbed. “It was me just overreacting. You know, being crazy. In fact, it wasn’t even really a reaction to the kiss, but the memories.” Okay, I had to shut up. But I was off to crazy land again and nothing could make me be quiet. And not to mention that I would do anything to keep him from avoiding my eye. It was strange how much I subconsciously ached for his love even though I convinced myself that I didn’t want it. “Since Sam suddenly dumped me for my cousin I’ve been a little messed up.” My mouth was running as if it was being chased by a lion.
I flinched when I realized what I just said.
; “He just left you?” Mike asked incredulously. I nodded wearily-I didn’t go to Mike’s house to pour my soul out to him. But I didn’t return to La Push to imprint either. “That’s impossible!” he exclaimed. He took my hands in his and stared me in the eye. “He shouldn’t have done that,” he whispered.
The intensity of his stare made shivers go up my spine. My hands tingled from his touch.
“Yeah…” I muttered and glanced away from him. I felt a blush creep up my cheeks. “But he imprinted on her. Even though it didn’t-and kind of still doesn’t- feel like an excuse to me, it can be pretty life changing,” I choked out. I let my eyes drift downward and waited for the tears to come. But none really had the chance to come.
Mike leaned forward and my breath caught in my throat. I was immediately aware of how close his body was to mine.
“If imprinting is so life changing, why is it so hard to love me?” he asked and my heart fluttered. I could feel his breath on my cheek.
I was about to respond, but my mind came up blank. I didn’t love him because I didn’t want to? Nah, that was no excuse. I just didn’t want to be forced into loving someone. Fate shouldn’t dictate my life-I should.
I turned my gaze towards Mike and took a good look at him. He was handsome, I couldn’t deny that. But I was never shallow and that wouldn’t be enough for me to love him. I looked at his face carefully. His features gave away everything that he was thinking. He wasn’t built behind a stone wall. He had no mask to put on. He was himself and could always be himself.
I only half realized that I was leaning in closer to him. The skin of my arm brushed against his and my whole body jolted and was engulfed in flames.
Mike was very different from Sam. One was a man who had nothing to hide and the other was someone who put up a mask everyday. Maybe I didn’t want just sweet words and overwhelming passion. Maybe I wanted something more powerful. Maybe I wanted a carefree demeanor and a man that would say what’s on his mind. No pretending. Just me…just me and Mike.
My hands were speedily placed on top of Mike’s and we were only millimeter’s apart. Every cell of my body was raging and swarming. It was like I was being electrocuted but no pain entered my body. All I could feel was a pleasurable tingling in my heart and stomach. He was so close…and all I suddenly wanted was him and only him.
“If I love you,” I whispered to him. “Imprinting won’t be the cause of it.”
I quickly clos ed the gap between us and our lips locked. It was more passionate than the first time and everything inside of me exploded. I smiled against his lips and wrapped my arms around him.
For that moment, there was nothing in the world except for me and Mike. No pack, no vampires, no Sam…only us. And that was fine with me. Other complications could wait for another day. Right then it was Mike’s turn to take them all away.
The kiss lasted forever and when it finally broke I was gasping for breath. And, I noted with a sense of smugness, so was Mike. We grinned at each other and he took my hand in his again. We leaned our foreheads against the other. I could almost feel the fast beat of his heart.
“Do you love me?” he gasped into my ear. I smiled again and scooted even closer to him.
“No, not yet,” I whispered back. “But I can’t wait until I do.”
Our lips met again and there was nowhere I would have rather been.