Power to the Players

By Tori M. Pack All Rights Reserved ©

Romance / Drama

Homecoming Part One

I picked Nicholas up in my arms, kissing his forehead as Natalie and I waited for the plane to arrive. Khloe, Sara, Evan, and Kyle were standing behind me, staring at the small clone of Natalie.

“You couldn’t deny this kid if you tried, Natie” Evan remarked, smiling at the little boy. Natalie smiled,“Pierce says the same thing even though I don’t think we look that much alike."

“Trust me, you do” I teased, putting him gently back in his car seat.

Katherine readjusted him and Natalie stared outside the window. She hadn’t been the same since her conversation with Kendra and I wondered what was spoken. I wanted to ask her, but I felt like I would be over stepping some boundaries. Natalie had made it clear when we first met that Kendra was a touchy subject and I didn’t want to unleash the fire that was brought whenever I mentioned her name.

Khloe noticed the way Natalie was acting and walked over to her, crouching down in front of her to talk with her. I sighed, running my fingers through my hair. Tonight was Homecoming and after a four and a half hour flight home; I doubted she was going to be in the mood to talk.

“I’m just upset that you didn’t tell me!” I heard Natalie exclaim as she quickly got up from her seat in front of Khloe. “Nat, I was going to. I didn’t want to ruin your time here. I didn’t know that your mom was going to give birth early, nobody knew, and that just added on to the fact that I was worried about you” Khloe explained.

“No! Don’t act like my mom giving birth to Nick a month early has anything to do with this. You knew Alex was hurting Kendra and you didn’t tell me. You were going to help her and you didn’t tell me! You’re supposed to be my friend, Khloe and I had to hear this from her” Natalie shot back angrily.

“I am your friend, Natalie and I’m sorry I didn’t tell. I just found out and what did you expect me to do? I didn’t want to bring her back up. You hate when anybody talks about her, so don’t get mad at me for not telling you” Khloe replied, losing her patience.

Kyle and Evan quickly jumped out of their seats to separate their friends.

“Red. Red, what’s wrong?” I asked, pulling her against me. “Tell them Khloe. Tell them what’s wrong” Natalie replied, still staring at the girl. “They already know, Natalie. Let’s not bring this up. Kyle knows, Evan knows-"

“But I don’t know right? I don’t know what’s going on” Sara interrupted, facing her.

Khloe stared into Sara’s eyes, sighing. “Remember when I told Kendra 'I pitied her' yesterday? You were so upset, I didn’t think you were even listening to me but Alex has been raping her and I pulled them apart. I punched him and brought Kendra back to Kyle’s house. I wanted to help her, regardless of what happened between herself and Natalie. Alex’s friend came over and roughed me up. Kendra was being a total bitch about it. I don’t know what I was thinking. I really wanted to help her but, I didn’t think she would tell Natalie about it. I was going to tell you Nat, I really was, but I didn’t want you to hear it from her” she said softly.

Sara’s jaw dropped and she glared at Khloe. “The past was the past. I didn’t think it would matter but then I forgot whom we were dealing with. I forgot this was Kendra. Natalie, I’m sorry. I’m sorry to you too, Beck” she continued, looking over at me.

I had no idea what was going on and felt like an outsider as I watched the group's reaction to what was just said. Kyle was gazing at Natalie while Evan’s fist was clenched and I’m guessing there was more to this story than was said before.

“After everything I went through with Kendra, you just thought I would let this go. You thought it was okay, to help the girl who practically ruined my life, who made me want to commit suicide, who gave me night terrors, and attacked me back in the showers during gym. You thought that was okay, Khloe” Natalie exploded.

Khloe stared at the girl and my eyes widened. “Wait. She hurt you? You told me that you’re relationship just became sexual. You didn’t tell me that not all of your hook-ups weren’t mutual” I exclaimed, moving away from her.

“Beck, I didn’t want you to know. I didn’t want you judging me for it. The first time in the shower, do you remember what I told you? I said I liked her, which I did, but sometimes, I would say ‘no’ and she just wouldn’t stop” Natalie replied, shaking her head as she remembered what happened.

“Does Pierce know? Does your mother know?” I asked, looking in their direction. Natalie shook her head, reaching out to comfort me.

“I don't want them to worry,” she replied. “Fuck Natalie! This girl was attacking you constantly and you didn’t want them to worry. No wonder you had nightmares about Kendra and no wonder you snuck into my bed. You lied to me, Natalie. You said she didn’t hurt,” I said angrily, moving again when she reached for me.

“I didn’t want you to know. There were things about my past that I knew would scare you away and I was afraid I would lose you” she groaned, her tears finally falling.

“Did you ever truly have a relationship with Kendra? Did she ever love you back?” I asked. Natalie shook her head once more. “She didn't and I thought that was love, just like Kendra thinks what Alex is doing to her is love, but I know it isn’t. I know that I was wrong. Please forgive me, Beck. Don’t be mad at me,” she sobbed, placing herself in my arms and this time, I complied.

“Don’t hide things from me, Natalie. Don’t lie to me. Don’t think that I’m going to run away because I’m not. I don’t know how Stephani or Billie or Lauren reacted when you told them but I’m not them, Natalie. I love you. I really hope you straightened things out with Kendra and soon, not now, but soon, I want you to tell Pierce and Katherine. They need to know,” I said, holding her against me.

She nodded as I wiped at her tears. “I’m mad, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t love you” I whispered, kissing her softly on the lips.

“Hey Natalie, I’m sorry about helping Kendra and if you don’t want me to then I won’t” Khloe said apologetically. Natalie bit her lip before gently replying, “No, Kendra needs a friend right now. You helping her would probably be for the best."

“Did you tell Kendra that?” I asked, arching my eyebrows at her. “Yes I did. Hopefully I won’t have anymore nightmares but I’m sure you could help with that” she replied, smirking at me.

“My bed is your bed,” I answered, smiling.

"NOW BOARDING FLIGHTS TO BALTIMORE ON EXIT 3A.”

Pierce and Katherine walked over to us and handed Natalie the tickets. I grabbed my suitcase before handing Natalie hers.

“Tell Elizabeth, Kylie, and your father that I said ‘hello’. Call me when you get home. I want to make sure you two arrived safely,” Katherine said sternly.

Natalie smiled and hugged her mother. “I will. I love you mom,” she said softly. “I love you too, Natalie” Katherine replied, smiling. I hugged Katherine and then hugged Pierce before moving out the way so that Natalie could do the same.

“Be careful, you two. It was nice meeting you, Beck” he exclaimed. “It was nice meeting you too,” I echoed. Natalie leaned down, kissing Nicholas on the forehead before running her thumb over his head.

“I love you Nick,” she whispered to his sleeping form. We walked towards the entrance and handed the woman our tickets.

“Hey Natie!” we heard Evan yell. She turned around and looked at him. “Hopefully it won’t be another four months until we see you again!” he said, a smirk on the corner of his lips.

“It won’t be. I promise you that. Take care you guys!” she replied, waving. “Bye Natalie. See you soon. Take care of Beck!” Sarah yelled. I laughed as we walked on to the plane and found our seats.

“So, ready to be back home?” I asked her. She sighed and put her head on my shoulder. “I thought you’d never ask” she replied. I smiled and turned my phone on, noticing that I had five missed calls, all from Lee.

I clicked on the voicemail that he left and placed my phone against my ear.

"Beck, it’s me! Yeah, I know it’s 2011 and all and I don’t mean to ruin your new year but get this, Hope dumped Mark! Yeah, I know. I’m in shock too and suddenly, she’s M.I.A. Jessie can’t reach her and she’s still in Mexico. I don’t know what’s going on, but I’m hoping you can call her and talk to her. Mark is a wreck. Call me back when you get this. Peace."

My jaw dropped as Natalie looked over at me. “What’s wrong?” she asked in a panic. "Hope broke up with Mark” I replied. “What?” Natalie exclaimed. I nodded my head, closing my phone.

“Why?” Natalie asked. “I don’t know but I do know that Homecoming sure will be interesting tonight” I replied, leaning closer into her embrace. She nodded, placing her head back on my shoulder as the plane took off.


Mark listened to the phone ring for the millionth time today and was growing even more frustrated each time he heard her voice mail. It was obvious that Hope didn’t want to talk to him but Mark wasn’t going to take “no” for an answer. What makes her think she can just break up with him without even telling him why? She leaves for Mexico and the next thing he knows, she wants to break up.

“She probably met a guy there,” he thought to himself but Hope wouldn’t do that. She would never cheat on him like Lee did to Jessie; she loved him far too much to do something like that. So what? What is it that made her want to let him go? He loves her! He was pretty damn sure that she loved him too, so what was the problem?

She has his heart and always has. Mark can’t even begin to think why she would want to hurt him like this.

“I love you, Hope Faith. I love you so much. Please, call me back."


Melody stared at the homecoming dress hanging from her closet door. She had put so much time into finding what she believed was the perfect dress for her. Fitting enough, sleek enough, stylish enough; a perfect example of whom Melody herself was but now, she didn’t even know if she wanted to wear it.

“Fuck Charlie. Fuck Beck. Do this for you” she said to herself as she breathed in and out. She didn’t know what to expect out of the night. She had no date. Sasha was now up for election and since Beck broke up with her, Melody hasn’t thought about Homecoming Queen, although she still wanted to win.

Melody couldn’t believe how horrible this year had turned out. She confessed her feelings to Beck; they broke up after the first two months. She tried to give Charlie her heart, but Charlie went back to the girl she fell in love with. Melody was beginning to think that she had no luck in relationships with girls and maybe she should try to talk Duncan into dating her again.

She sighed and collapsed on her bed. “This was supposed to be my year,” she mumbled, as she stared at the ceiling. “I guess life had a different plan huh, Melody?” she added, blowing her bangs out of her face.

She glanced back over at the dress and looked at her clock. Homecoming started in four hours, which gave her enough time to get herself ready and drive there, if she was still going.

“Fuck this. I’m going” she exclaimed, pushing herself off the bed and taking the dress off of the closet door. She walked into the bathroom and proudly closed it, hoping that she was making a good decision.


I happily opened the door to my house and helped Natalie inside. I almost forgot how cold it was here in Baltimore and suddenly missed the hot Los Angeles weather.

“Beck, is that you? It better be!” my mom called from the other room. I smiled as she came around the corner and hugged us. “How was the trip?” she asked, smiling back at me.

“It was nice. I got to meet a few of Natalie’s friends and her mother had the baby while I was there” I replied. “Really? Do you have a picture?” she asked, looking towards Natalie.

She nodded and pulled out her camera, scrolling through it and stopping on a picture of Nicholas. “Oh my goodness! He looks just like you” she exclaimed. “That’s what I said!” I replied before being pounced on by Brandon.

“Why’d you leave me here?” he yelled, biting my shoulder. “Ow, you little vampire! Why are you biting me?” I said laughing. “Because you left me here alone for a week with mom and dad. Not cool Beck,” he pouted, crossing his arms over his chest.

“You’ll live. Hey, I brought you back something” I said, going through my knapsack. He smiled brightly as I pulled out the sombrero that Natalie and I purchased at the souvenir shop.

“Cool! A real sombrero” he rejoiced, placing it on his head. “Yeah, I thought you would like it. Only you would like something like this” I chuckled.

“Bi-"

“Yeah, yeah. I know. Bite me” I interrupted. Natalie laughed before telling me to “be nice to my brother." “He’s just happy to see you,” she said, squeezing my hand.

“He bit me!”

“You know that’s his way of saying ‘hello’! Don’t take offense.”

“Hey! Stop talking about me like I’m not here!”

We all laughed as my mother simply shook her head before grabbing my bag and taking it to my room. “Where’s dad?” I asked, looking around the house for him. “He went to his office to grab something but he will be here before you leave for Homecoming. By the way, you’ve got three hours, so whatever you’re going to do. Do it quick” she replied.

“Oh yeah! Beck, your homecoming stuff is in your bag” Natalie said, pulling me back towards her. “You bought me something?” I asked, arching my eyebrows at her. “Yeah, while you were ogling me, I spotted something that would look nice on you” she replied.

“I wasn’t ogling.”

“Right.”

“I wasn’t. I was just, staring intently.”

“Mmh-hmm.”

“I wanted to make sure everything fit nicely.”

“Did you see anything you liked?”

“Always.”

I smirked at her and Brandon rolled his eyes, walking off with his sombrero. “I’m going to make this one of the best nights of your life, Natalie. I promise,” I whispered in her ear before kissing her cheek, walking towards my room.

“Tell Elizabeth and Kylie I said ‘hi’!” I yelled over my shoulder. I didn’t need to turn around to check and see if she was blushing, I already knew she was. Tonight was going to be the start of something exciting between Natalie and I; nothing was going to ruin that fact.


Lee sat on the couch, holding Lance in his arms as Jessie ran back and forth from his bedroom to the bathroom. “Jess, we have two hours. What’s the rush?” he asked, bouncing Lance on his lap, making him squeal with laughter.

“I’m rushing because I’m trying to make sure that I look amazing tonight. You do realize that the whole school will know I’m pregnant by the end of tonight. Chase is probably going to be there too!” she exclaimed.

Lee frowned at the mention of his name. “Screw Chase and screw everyone else. That’s what I said when I was trying to decide if I wanted to get back together with you” he replied.

“I know, baby but at the same time, I will eventually have to talk to Chase about this, about everything for the next eighteen years” she said, dryly.

“Or he could run away and never come back. That’s an option too, right? He said so himself that he didn’t want anything to do with our daughter” Lee replied, carefully throwing Lance over his shoulder as he stood up and walked towards his fiancé.

“I know but a piece of me wants him to want to be a part of her life, even if he only sees her once a month. My father was never around and, I don’t know, it made me feel bad sometimes and I felt like he didn’t even want to see me at all. I just don’t want her feeling like that and if Chase will agree to seeing her than I’ll feel better, that’s all I ask” she explaining, stopping what she was doing to look at him.

“I wish things were different, Jess,” he whispered, leaning against the door to watch her. “I know, Lee. So do I but sometimes you have to play with the hand you were dealt” she said.

Jessie put her hand on his chest before gently kissing him on the lips, walking past him. Lee stood there for a moment and looked back as he watched her go.

“I love you, Jessica,” he said to himself.


Melody stared at herself in the mirror as she twisted and turned to get a better view of herself in the dress. ‘Perfection’ came to mind every time she glanced at herself but she still felt a bit of depression. She swallowed her courage and grabbed her purse before walking down the steps.

Her mother and father stood there in awe of their daughter and Melody offered a few painted smiles for pictures before she walked out the door towards her car.

As she drove down the street, the images of months before came fluttering back to her as Melody began to sob behind the wheel. Her emotions came out in a rush and without thinking, she made an illegal turn and ran right into the jeep next to her.

The impact shook her out of her sobs and she slammed her fists on the wheel. “Shit! Shit! Shit!” she screamed in fury. She violently opened her car door and slammed it shut as she stared at the dent in her car.

She groaned in anger, placing her hands on the car hood in defeat.

“You know, you are too beautiful to be crying, Melody."

She stared up at the driver of the jeep and gasped. Standing right in front of her was Kieran Holloway. She had not spoken with Kieran since the 9th grade when she called the girl a “brace face” and made fun of her constantly with Sasha but now, it seemed as if Melody was eating those words.

Kieran had tan skin and shaggy blonde hair along with the bluest eyes Melody had ever seen. The girl no longer wore braces and her teeth were practically perfect as she smiled at her. Melody put her hand over her mouth as she noticed the shape Kieran’s jeep was in.

“Kieran! Oh God, I’m so sorry. My insurance will pay for everything, I promise you” she exclaimed. Kieran laughed and sat down on the hood. “I'm sure they will,” she said, smiling.

Melody realized that her make-up was ruined from crying and quickly rubbed at her cheeks to stop the dripping mascara. “Something got you down?” she added.

“Seeing your ugly face, Holloway” Melody mumbled. Kieran laughed louder, flipping her hair out of her face. “Good comeback. If you didn’t notice, I was asking a question, that’s cool too” she remarked.

Melody groaned and put her head against her car door. “Please disappear, Kieran,” she said in annoyance. “I kind of can’t. I need your insurance and everything, plus the police are on their way and I’m pretty sure my car and your car are both going to get towed” she said, sucking her teeth.

“Exactly what I need,” Melody mumbled sarcastically. She stood next to her car with Kieran and watched as people drove by, staring at them and wondering if anybody was hurt. Melody sighed as she subconsciously put her head on Kieran’s shoulder.

“Whoa. Getting a little comfortable there huh, Melody?” Kieran teased. She lifted her head up quickly, glaring at her. “Don’t flatter yourself,” she grimaced, crossing her arms over her shoulders. Kieran smirked and looked over at the police cars as they arrived.

The officer asked a few questions while Kieran and Melody exchanged insurance before a tow truck arrived and hooked both of their cars up. “Great. Now I have to take the city bus to the school” she groaned as she walked down towards the bus stop.

Melody looked behind her and noticed that Kieran was following her. “Um, can I help you?” she said, raising an eyebrow at her. “You know, you were so nice a few moments ago when you were worried about our cars but now, you’re back to being regular old Melody Schmidt. Just peachy” she said with her hands in her pockets.

“I really don’t have time for your sarcasm. I’m trying to make it to this thing on time” Melody replied, carefully stepping on board the bus as it pulled up to the curb. “In case you haven’t noticed, we’re going to the same place” Kieran stated.

Melody suddenly took notice of Kieran’s formal wear. “Sorry. I’m just in my own head right now” she answered. “Penny for your thoughts?” Kieran asked, tilting her head to the side. Melody smiled before leaning back against her seat as the bus began driving.

“It’s a long story.”

“This is gonna be a pretty long bus ride.”

“You’re practically a stranger.”

“Technically, I’ve known you for four years.”

“Why do you want to know?”

“Because you were crying about it and you lost focus and ran into my jeep. I have the right to know."

Melody groaned as Kieran stared at her, waiting for her to begin talking. “You make a good argument, Holloway,” she addressed. “Hey, I’m not on the debate team cause of my good looks” Kieran replied, shrugging her shoulders.

“You’re on the debate team?” she asked. “Not relevant to what we’re talking about. So, what’s going on that can make the great Melody Schmidt cry?” Kieran said. Melody sighed once more tonight before pouring her heart out. She told her everything that had happened the past month from falling for Beck to Losing Charlie to her ‘dead’ girlfriend. By the time they had finished talking, they were the last two on the bus.

Kieran was sitting next to her now and her jacket was lying in her lap next to Melody’s purse. “Wow, it does sound like Beck and Charlie messed you up good but did you ever stop to think about, I don’t know, what you needed?” Kieran questioned.

“What do you mean by that? I wanted them both. I liked them both and they royally screwed me over” Melody exclaimed. “No, you weren’t listening to me. I said, ‘did you ever stop to think about what you needed, not what you wanted’. You wanted Beck and you wanted Charlie but did you really need the two of them in your life at that point. You knew how Beck felt about Natalie and you still went after her and even when you two were together, I bet deep down you knew she still wanted Natalie. When you were trying to get Charlie to like you, did you ever stop to think that maybe being with someone else wasn’t the right thing at that time? I guess what I’m saying is, you should reflect on what you need instead of what you want because I really don’t think you needed either of them” Kieran explained.

Melody stared at Kieran in shock before leaning back against her seat. “The sad part is that I think you’re right,” she groaned. “No, the sad part is that you know I’m right” Kieran said, laughing.

“Shut up. I’m having a hard time here and tonight isn’t getting any better” she whined. The bus pulled up to the last stop as Kieran and Melody both exited together as they walked towards the school.

“Stay with me tonight” Kieran said in a hushed voice. Melody glanced over at her and saw her smiling. “Really?” Melody asked. “Yeah, really. If you feel that strongly about it, then I want you to stay with me. I can’t promise you an amazing night but I sure as hell can promise you a good one” Kieran replied, honestly.

Melody smiled back at her as they walked towards the entrance doors. Kieran subconsciously held the door for them as Melody said a polite “thank you” before stepping inside.

“Kieran Holloway and Melody Schmidt? What the hell?”

“Can’t be any worse than Melody and Beck.”

“I thought they hated each other!”

“I thought Melody was with Beck?”

“They broke up a long time ago. Beck is with Natalie.”

“Are Kieran and Melody together?”

“I don’t care. Melody is hot as fuck. I’d date her.”

“Melody? Kieran is hot as fuck. Just look at those eyes."

Melody heard the gossip around her and wondered if Kieran heard it too but the blonde haired wonder was walking just the same as she was down the street. There was no real ignorance shown on her face and it seemed like the rumors of them together didn’t bother her at all.

“You’re weird, Kieran.”

“I thought I was ugly.”

“No, you’re just weird.”

“So, you think I’m hot?”

“What? When did I say that?”

“You just said I wasn’t ugly.”

“That doesn’t mean I think you’re hot.”

“I think you’re hot.”

“What?”

“Yeah, you’re hot. Come on, it’s obvious to everyone.”

“Shut up.”

“I will when you admit I’m hot.”

“Kieran!”

Kieran laughed to herself and stood in line with Melody for the tickets. Melody was moving around nervously and playing with her hair. It was such a cute antic that Kieran felt herself smile. “Beck is an idiot for breaking up with you,” she whispered in her ear.

“Kieran, stop but thank you,” she said, hiding her blush from Kieran’s view. “You’re welcome,” she replied before taking Natalie’s wrist and gently pulling her into the gymnasium.


Mark was lying on the bed, about to give up all hope and turn off his cell phone before finally, Hope called him back.

He eagerly flipped open the phone and held it to his ear. “Hello? Hope!” he said, trying to keep his cool.

“Mark, I’m sorry I haven’t been answering your calls. I’ve been busy.”

“Too busy to pick up the phone and tell me why you want to break up with me?”

“Mark, my abuela is very ill and I’m staying in Mexico to take care of her. My parents are flying down tomorrow and I don’t know when I’ll be back.”

“So, you’re saying you don’t want to be with me because you think our relationship won’t work unless we’re in the same state? Hope, we can work this out somehow. I don’t care where you are. I love you.”

“I love you too but she’s important to me. She’s my family and if she needs me to be here, I’m going to stay. I’m so sorry but I have no other choice.”

“What about a long distance relationship? Can’t that work? I can get us some web cams and I’ll send one to you and-”

“Mark, please.”

“I don’t want to lose you! Why are you doing this, Hope? Why?”

He punched his wall in anger and sat down on his bed, crumbling his hair in his fist.

“I’m sorry I hurt you, Mark and you have to understand that you will always be my first love. No matter what happens down the road, I will always love you."

The phone went dead and all Mark could was sit there. He threw his cellphone across the room and listened to it shatter in pieces. He threw all of his covers off of his bed and chucked his pillow across the room, laying there on his empty bed in silence.

"No matter what happens down the road, I will always love you."


I showered quickly and ran out of the bathroom, throwing open my suitcase and smiling at what Natalie had bought me. “Despite me saying I would wear a dress, you get me this. You sneaky girl” I said to myself.

I lifted up the navy blue suit, smirking. Luckily, there was no tie or my mom would have thrown a fit. I pulled on the clothes and made sure that everything was nicely laid down before stepping out the room.

“Well, don’t you look sweet," my father complimented as he tugged at the buttons on his work shirt. “Dad! I missed you” I exclaimed, running into his arms to embrace him. He smiled, hugging me back.

“I missed you too, little foot. I expected to see you in a dress but I think this is more you. You look nice, Becca,” he said, giving me a once over. “Wait! Wait. I haven’t seen you yet!” my mother yelled from the other room. I sighed as she awed over me, taking picture downstairs before Natalie arrived.

Brandon was sitting on the couch watching TV as I sat down next to him. “Are you going come back to see me at my homecoming?” he asked. I smiled, placing my hand on his head. “Wouldn’t miss it for the world” I replied. He smiled back at me but frowned when I rubbed his head.

“I’m not a dog!”

“Could’ve fooled me!”

He was about to pounce on me when the doorbell rang. I jumped off the couch, happily allowing Natalie in. “You ready?” she asked. “Yeah and I have to say, seeing you in this dress a second time still leaves me speechless” I replied.

She slapped my arm, whispering a ‘thank you’ before kissing me. “Be careful Beck. Drive safely” my mother warned. I rolled my eyes at her but stopped when she gave me a stern look.

“I will. Good night. See you in the morning” I said, closing the door as Natalie and I left. “Morning?” Natalie asked, raising her eyebrow at me.

“Yes, morning. I told you. This is going to be one of the best nights of your life” I replied, taking her hand to interlace our fingers. She leaned in to kiss me before getting in the car as we headed towards the school.


Lee danced next to Jessie when he got a text from Beck stating that she and Natalie were on their way. “Hmm. Took them long enough. The dance started twenty five minutes ago” he muttered before putting his phone back in his pocket.

“You do remember that they just flew from L.A only a few hours ago? They were probably tired and I don’t blame them for being a bit late” Jessie said, as yet another girl walked by and stared at her. She wrapped her arms around herself and Lee noticed.

He smiled, putting his arms around her waist and kissing the top of her head. “Don’t worry about them. Tonight, it’s just you and me alright? They don’t matter. Try and have a good time,” he whispered, rubbing her arms.

“I’m not even fully showing yet and people are noticing,” she whispered back. “Let them notice. They don’t have a say about our daughter and I don’t care what they have to say” Lee replied, proudly. Jessie smiled over her shoulder at him and turned around in his arms.

“You’re so good to me,” she said, wrapping her arms around his neck. “Well, if I’m not then I get bitched at for an hour” he said. Jessie smacked his arm and he laughed. “I’m kidding." “You better be” she said playfully.

Lee looked around the gym and arched his eyebrows at Kieran and Melody. “What the hell? What’s Kieran doing with Mel?” he asked. Jessie searched the gym for the two girls and smirked when she saw them together.

Melody was trying to dance alone but kept being pulled back into Kieran’s arms. Jessie could clearly see that Melody wasn’t upset about the action because her cheeks flared red and she rolled her eyes when Kieran put her hands on her waist.

“Those two are totally together,” Jessie said laughing. “What? No way. Kieran is too awesome to be with her” Lee shot back. “You’re just saying that because Kieran helped you and Beck put together your club,” she added, smirking.

“Hell yeah. Which is exactly why she’s too awesome. I still can’t believe that she would rather be in the debate club than PTTP,” he sulked.

“Lee, now isn’t the time to be thinking about club duties,” she teased. “It’s always time for power to the players, Jess” he shot back. Jessie rolled her eyes at her fiancé before looking back at the two of them.

“I think it’s cute. If Melody could be with anyone, I’m glad it’s Kieran. We all know Beck and her were a complete-"

"Disaster?”

Jessie looked at him, laughing. “Exactly."

The music slowed down as Lee looked around once more for his friend before noticing Beck and Natalie walk in the room. “There they are! It’s about time” he exclaimed. Lee waved them over and Beck waved back.

“You two are such nerds,” Jessie said. “Hey! That may be true but we both hold the highest ranks in a few pro games, so we’re allowed to be nerds” he remarked, pointing between himself and Beck.

Jessie smiled at him but her smile quickly dropped when she saw Chase walking towards them. “Lee, don’t lose your cool, okay? Chase is coming this way,” she warned.

Lee spun around and sure enough, Chase was making his way over. Lee felt his heartbeat sped up in anger. Beck quickly grabbed his arm, gently pulling him away.

“They need to talk,” she said. “But she’s my-"

“Lee. Jessie can handle this. They need to talk,” she repeated, interrupting him. Lee frowned as he watched Chase and Jessie speak animatedly before they walked to a secluded area outside the gym.

“I hate this Beck! I hate him. I’m so afraid that I’ll screw up and he’ll jump right back in again,” Lee groaned.

“Lee, you’re not going to screw up again” Natalie said. “What makes you so sure?” Lee questioned, looking between the couple. “Because you love Jessie and you’re not going to do anything to mess that up,” she replied bluntly.

Lee opened his mouth to say something but stopped and stared at the floor. “I hate that you’re right” he mumbled. Beck laughed before squeezing his shoulders. “Relax. She’ll be back soon. For now, have some fun with us. Holy shit! Is that Kieran and Melody?” she exclaimed, pointing towards them.

Lee chuckled. Yup, that couple was going to take some getting used to.

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