Book Review – Two by Two by Nicholas Sparks

Two by Two / Nicholas Sparks / 2016 / Grand Central Publishing / ISBN 9780751550030 / 482 Pages / Romance

Russell Green has it all: a loving family, a successful career and a beautiful house. But underneath his seemingly perfect world, cracks are beginning to appear…and no one is more surprised than Russ when the life he took for granted is turned upside down. Finding himself single-handedly caring for his young daughter, while trying to launch his own business, the only thing Russ knows s that he must shelter his little girl from the consequence of these changes. As Russ embarks on this daunting and unexpected new chapter of his life, a chance encounter will change him to find a happiness beyond anything he could ever have imagined.  Continue reading “Book Review – Two by Two by Nicholas Sparks”

Book Review – Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland

Our Chemical Hearts / Krystal Sutherland / 2016 / Penguin Books / ISBN 9780143573906 / 313 Pages / Young Adult

Henry Page has never been in love. The slo-mo, can’t-eat-can’t-sleep kind of love he’s been hoping for just hasn’t been on the cards – at least not yet. Henry’s too busy trying to get into a semi-decent college and become editor of his school newspaper, a dream three years in the making. The rest of his spare time he spends with his best friends, Lola and Murray, playing video games and advising them on their own sordid love lives. Then he meets Grace Town, the elusive new girl in school, who wears oversized boys’ clothing, walks with a cane, rarely seems to shower, and is hiding crushing secrets. She’s hardly who Henry expected his dream girl to be, but when the two are chosen to edit the paper together, sparks fly. After all this time, Henry’s about to learn firsthand just how disastrous the road to first love can be – and that sometimes it’s the detours that end up mattering much more. Continue reading “Book Review – Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland”

Book Review – The Loneliness of Distant Beings by Kate Ling

The Loneliness of Distant Beings / Kate Ling / 2016 / Hodder and Stoughton / ISBN 9781510200166 / 358 Pages / Young Adult

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http://www.booktopia.com.au/the-loneliness-of-distant-beings-kate-ling/prod9781510200166.html

Even though she knows it’s impossible, Seren longs to have the sunshine on her skin. It’s something she feels she needs to stay sane. But when you’re hurtling through space at thousands of kilometres an hour, sometimes you have to accept there are things you cannot change. Except that the arrival of Dom in her life changes everything in ways she can barely comprehend. He becomes the sun for her, and she can’t help but stay in his orbit. To lose him would be like losing herself…In the dark, can a heart still hope?

 

Review –

 

This book is about a girl who is struggling with her reality, her reality being stuck on a spaceship for the rest of her life. A reality she just can’t come to grasps with just like her mother. With a forced marriage and a job that means nothing to her forced upon her to carry out for the next two years Seren is in turmoil – mentally, not able to find a way out. But then she finds Dom, a guitar playing, smooth talking guy with all the right access cards. But to be with Dom, Seren is breaking the law, a law punishable by death. With time running out on her secret rendezvous with Dom, Seren doesn’t know what to do and people are growing increasingly worried about her mental health. With nothing else to lose, Seren and her friends not only take their lives into their own hands, but they also discover a whole new world.

I love this book. I wasn’t sure about it for the first few pages because I didn’t really know what was going on and had no idea what was mean to be happening. But then my gosh did it pick up. Before I knew it I was in a space ship on a journey with no end date of return in sight. I immediately needed to know what was going to happen to the ship and to Seren and how the two were going to get along. I knew it wasn’t going to be a great relationship, but I had no idea how extreme all of it was going to be in the end.

I love the writing, I love the concept, I love the story, I love Seren and her ambition to fight against the system when she knows it is not right and isn’t scared to speak for herself even if people are just going to call her crazy and lock her up. The best bit of the book was definitely at the end, the mission, the escape, the end of the journey for Seren and Dom and a few others. It wasn’t what I was expecting, it wasn’t how I thought it would end and I am glad about that.

If you like books about teenagers falling in love with the wrong person, about space, about Earth, about dreams wishes and wants and fighting a corrupt system, then this is the book for you to read. Go out and read it now and the nice book cover is a bonus.

I give this book 4.5 out of 5 booky stars!

You can get a copy of this book here:

Booktopia

Angus & Robertson Book World

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Book Review – The Crown

The Crown / Keira Cass / 2016 / Harper Collins / ISBN 9780007580248 / 278 Pages / Young Adult / Dystopian

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http://www.booktopia.com.au/the-crown-kiera-cass/prod9780007580248.html

When Eadlyn became the first princess of Illea to hold her own Selection, she didn’t think she would fall in love with any of her thirty-five suitors. But as events at the palace force her even further into the spotlight, Eadlyn realizes that she might not be content remaining alone. Eadlyn still isn’t sure she’ll find the fairy-tale ending her parents did twenty years ago. But sometimes the heart has a way of surprising you.

Keira Cass is the master of dystopian young love. This is the fifth book in The Selection series written by Cass and she still has it. If you have read the first four books than you won’t be surprised about this book. In fact, I have read all five of these books so fast and almost one after another that I don’t know what happens in which book and where one starts and ends.

Not only is Cass a great world builder, but this fifth books show lots of heart and dedication to her characters. With new character introduced in the book beforehand, Cass does a great deal of work to make this book end with a happy ending even though it looks like at the beginning that that isn’t possible.

In this book Eadlyn, who I still think is a spoilt brat, finally brings down her wall and steps up to the person I know her parents America and Maxon created. In my last review for The Heir I said that Eadlyn needed to grow up and be more like her parents and that the book didn’t feel like it was part of the series. Well this book brings the whole thing together really nicely.

Eadlyn does grow up (even at 16) and puts on her big girl crown, she falls in love with someone I thought might be the obvious choice, but then again I think if she had gone with someone else as her Selection winner than Cass does not know her demographic well.

This book is great, the whole series is great. Everyone should go out and read them all. I hope that Cass continues to write, because she has a real knack for it.

I give this book 4.5 out of 5 booky stars!

Stick around…

DC Legends of Tomorrow

Dc Legends of Tomorrow is a spin off television show that has come out of the Arrow and The Flash franchises. Essentially it combines all of the worlds and characters in a unique and funny way. There are some great elements in the show that make it interesting and there are also so boring bits in the show that make me wonder why I keep going back each week to watch it.

But there is one reason as to why I do keep going back and it is for Leonard Snart aka Captain Cold. Wentworth Miller is the actor who plays this character and if you don’t know who he is you better go and look him up and fall in love with him just like I have.

This morning as I traipsed around Facebook I found this amazing link/article from Buzzfeed:

http://www.buzzfeed.com/ahmedaliakbar/for-everyone-watching-legends-of-tomorrow-just-for-captain-c?bffb&utm_term=.tdrYRvVRJ#.btxKpnMp0

And I fell in love once again. I can’t believe there are like minded people out there who are rooting for good old Captain Cold. His sarcasm is amazing and there isn’t anything he wouldn’t do to get the job done.

He is a once in a life time character and I think Wentworth Miller is exceptional.

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The Oldest Bookstore in the World

How amazing is this!

The Oldest Bookstore in the World

A book shop that has been around for 281 years! I mean how cool is that and in Portugal as well.

This bookshop has officially gone on my list of places to visit before I die.

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19 ways to have the literary wedding of your dreams

I have just found this link on my Facebook page and wanted to immediately share it with you all. I am perhaps hundreds of years off getting married so this doesn’t really mean anything to me as I can’t put them to any use, but I am sharing this great link from Buzzfeed with you all, my friends, my followers, my fellow book lovers to inspire you all.

http://www.buzzfeed.com/nataliebrown/gorgeous-things-every-book-lover-needs-for-their-wedding#.nvD1Z7YZ8

Take a look at this beauty of a link. Not only would I do perhaps every single thing on this list. Yes, that includes the earring and the book invitations to even the decorations and lights.

This list is by far the best thing I have seen on the internet to day, and even though it comes to no use to me right now, I am placing it here on my blog, so that one day, one day in the future I can look back and do some of the things on this list, because lets face it – books are definitely going to be apart of my wedding and how cool does some of this stuff actually look.

Do you guys like what’s on the list? Would you do anything that is on this list? Have you perhaps done something that is on the list or similar to something that is list? Let me know.

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Book Review – The Siren by Kiera Cass

The Siren / Kiera Cass / Harper Collins / 2016 / ISBN 9780008157937 / 327 pages / Young Adult

 

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The Siren by Kiera Cass is the first book I have read by Kiera Cass. I have seen her books all over the place but haven’t picked them up just yet. I brought this one at the recommendation of a friend and am so glad that I did finally pick up a book by Kiera Cass. The Siren is about sirens of course, but it is more than that. It is about love and friendship, family and loss. The book follows one particular siren Kahlen, a combination of Ellen and Katlyn and her journey as she nears the end of her cycle of being a siren.

A lot happens in this book and this book makes me feel so many different things. At first I was impressed by the writing. It has great world building and great characters. But then I kind of got over a lot of things that happened in the book. I wanted a lot more to happen and when it finally did start to happen the pages were dwindling down too fast. I don’t know if it just the way the book has been written – chronologically or if because I think it should have been written differently – I think the book and the story would have benefited if it started at the end of the story and flashbacked to the start so we could get more of what happens at the end. The names within the book are cute, but I couldn’t pronounce any of them in my head so I kept getting confused in the book about who was who and what they were doing.

I don’t want to put this book down because it is a great book, I just think the author could have changed it up a bit to make it a bit more interesting. I love the love story that is in the book, but it is heartbreaking reading Kahlen fantasies and cry over the same boy when if certain things happened the whole thing could have changed. Don’t get me wrong I think Akinli is great, but another weird name, really?

Anyway, if you like mermaids, mythology, water, love stories, forbidden love, torture, family, friendship in the books you read at a level which is easy and fast to read then The Siren is the book for you.

I give this book 3.1 out of 5 booky stars.

Stick around…

Storm…/

***For more on my story STORM, check out my ‘Extract‘ section for the beginning***

For the next week, even though we didn’t see each other, we were always talking. And the more we talked the more we learnt about each other. There was always something new to learn about one another.

I learnt that his favourite colour is blue and that is favourite book is my favourite book Wuthering Heights but for two completely different reasons. Matt told me that he works construction because when David comes home crying after school because he doesn’t have the newest and latest toy or book or clothing, he wants to go out and buy them for him, because he doesn’t want him to have a difficult time at school. He works hard for his brother and mother and would do anything for them, and I can’t say that that doesn’t make my heart beat a little faster.

Then one night Matt dropped a bigger bomb, telling me that when he was younger he dreamt that one day that he would build his own house and fill it completely with children of his own. I hadn’t asked him about it and we weren’t even talking about it, he just said that he wanted me to know. I didn’t know what to say when he told me. It meant a lot to me that he felt so comfortable telling me such personal things so early in our relationship.

On Friday night, I waited for Matt to text me to tell me that he had finished work. But the text never came. I didn’t want to worry, thinking maybe he had picked up another shift or that he was at home busy with David. So I helped Mum make dinner and then watched some television with Lily after as Mum went back to work in her office. I kept my phone close to me just in case Matt rang or texted.

I got lost in the show Lily and I were watching and didn’t realise the time when I heard a knock on the front door. Lily and I looked at each other wondering who the hell it could be. As Lily doesn’t like to answer the door, especially at night, I grabbed my phone and headed to the door. I saw that it was well after eight as I unlocked the door. It was dark out and I was slightly scared about who could be on the other side of the door, so I opened it slowly making sure that the fly screen was still locked. But then I saw the silhouette of the person leaning on their side on the wall of the house and realised that it was Matt.

Matt! Oh my god what has happened? What are you doing here?

“Matt” I asked unlocking the fly screen already knowing the answer.

“Anna who is it?” I could hear Lily ask from the lounge room.

I knew something was wrong before I even opened the door because there was no way that Matt would be here under any other circumstances. I couldn’t see his face as he had a hood over his head.

“Matt what’s wrong?” I asked gently pulling the hood off.

He didn’t move, it looked like he couldn’t even move and now seeing his face I could see why not.

“Matt what has happened? Can you move?” I asked as I walked around to his side to see how badly hurt he is.

He could barely walk or talk but I heard the whimpered no that came out of him. I needed to get him inside, safe, but there was no way that I was going to be able to move him by myself.

“LILY I NEED YOUR HELP COME HERE!”

I could hear her coming towards me and Matt and the only thing I could think about was the fact that this was how my family was going to find out about Matt and me.

“What’s wrong?” Lily asked as she got to the door but couldn’t see us yet.

“I need you to help me bring Matt inside, I can’t carry him by myself. Can you help me or not?” I insisted as she just stood there looking at me as I pulled Matt’s arm around my shoulder.

She looked at me again and then walked around me to get to the other side of Matt where she lifted him off his side and placed his arm around her neck. We slowly got inside and as soon as we cleared the front door and hallway I yelled for Mum on the top of my lungs. I don’t know what she was doing but she came as soon as I yelled. She stopped where she was when she saw the three of us, unsure of what was happening. I couldn’t blame her it’s not like Lily or I had ever been in such as situation.

“Can you pull out a chair?” I said as we got closer to her.

She grabbed a dining room chair and pulled it into the open lounge room area and Lily and I placed Matt down carefully, trying not to hurt him anymore than he already was. With the light on I could see just how bruised and battered Matt really was and see just how much pain he must have been.

“Matt who did this to you?” I asked crouching down in front of him.

“Anna who is this?” Mum asked without letting Matt answer my question first.

“This is my boyfriend Matt and I know I haven’t told you about him yet and I was going to soon. Can you guys help him?” I said looking into Matt’s eyes because if I looked at Mum or Lily I would have seen reactions I didn’t want to see.

“Your boyfriend? Since when?” Mum was shocked.

“I will explain it to you later, can you guys help him or not?” I said getting angry that Matt was still sitting there in pain whilst they were interrogating me.

“I’ll go get my things” Lily finally said leaving to go to her room.

“And I’ll get some clean cloth and water and shut the front door I suppose” Mum wasn’t happy but I didn’t really care at this given moment.

“Everything is going to be okay. I promise. Mum and Lily are great at what they do and I won’t let anything bad happen to you”

Nothing bad can happen to Matt. I only just found him, you can’t take him away from me this soon. I won’t let you.

Lily came back with her work bag and her stethoscope and Mum came with a bowl of water and clean cloths. Lily got to work inspecting Matt to see what was wrong with him and what needed to be fixed and looked at. Matt had one eye that was almost swollen completely shut with bruises and cuts all over his face and neck. God only knows that else what under his clothing and inside if he was that bad on the outside already.

Lily put on her pair of gloves as she asked Matt a whole bunch of questions, not always getting a loud enough response and having to ask again. I watched closely as she listened to his chest and then felt it, feeling that he had two broken ribs. It took her a while but she sat there and cleaned and dressed all of Matt’s wounds from head to toe before sitting back in front of him and pulled off her gloves with a look on her face.

“What’s wrong?” worry was building within me.

“I’m trying to work out if we should bring Matt to the hospital or if he can go in the morning” she finally said just staring at Matt.

Oh god, this is bad. Matt was hurt and he wasn’t okay, not by a long shot.

“What should we do?” I asked walking over to stand next to Matt.

“I’m going to go and call my friend and see what they say because at the moment I don’t know everything and I can’t see everything that might be happening inside and if I miss just one thing, it could cause complications. Give me a minute” Lily walked off towards her bedroom.

I sat in the seat Lily had been sitting in moments ago in front of Matt and carefully took his hand in mine. I was so scared for him and I didn’t know what to do to make any of this better.

“No hospitals” Matt said softly.

“Okay” I replied not knowing why Matt didn’t want to go to a hospital and gently kissed his hand to try and comfort him.

I could feel Mum staring at me after I kissed Matt’s hand. I would have kissed him on the lips if they weren’t covered in blood and he was in so much pain. I was glad that Mum and Lily knew about me and Matt. It was such a relief, even though it wasn’t under the most ideal circumstances. It was good that I didn’t have to keep lying to my family about Matt. Mum came back with a glass of cold water for Matt.

“Everything is going to be fine Matt” Mum said as she placed the glass of water on the table next to Matt before walking over and kissing the top of my head.

Is this her way of telling me that she is okay with me and Matt, that she approves? I hope so.

“Matt is there anyone that will be worrying that you’re not home at this time of night? A parent who needs to know what has happened?” Mum was obviously worried too.

Oh crap! David. How did I forget about him, he must be freaking out that Matt isn’t home.

“Do you want me to call David and let him know what is happening?” I asked Matt realising that his mother needed to know too.

“Call him off my phone but let me speak” Matt said squeezing my hand softly before nudging his head to the left telling me his phone was in his pocket.

I let go of Matt’s hand and stood up to get his phone, hoping that it hadn’t been destroyed in whatever had happened to him. As I slid my hand in his pocket Matt shifted slightly to let me grab it, wincing as he moved.

“Sorry” I whispered hoping that he wasn’t in more pain because of me.

I opened his phone, but it was password protected and I had no idea what his pin would be. I looked up at him for some guidance.

“Storm” was all he said.

It took me a minute to work out what the date was when we met, when the storm was before punching the numbers in.

Oh his phone pin is that day that we meet. Cute!

I smiled slightly as I looked up at him and he smiled in return even though his right eye was now completely swollen shut. I headed straight for his phone book and of course David and I were up the top of the list and pressed dial on David’s number.

“It’s ringing” I stood there holding the phone next to Matt’s ear waiting for David to pick up.

Finally David picked up and quickly started asking Matt questions before Matt even had the chance to say hello. I could hear everything David was saying to Matt and what Matt was trying to tell David. Then I heard a women’s voice on the other end and knew it had to be his mother, because she wasn’t yelling but she was angry at him. Matt kept talking to them and then grabbed my hand. He looked at me and I knew what his mother had just asked so I knew what he wanted to know.

“Mum is it okay if Matt stays here for the next few days until he is feeling better” I asked quietly as Matt was still on the phone.

“If Lily says he doesn’t have to go to the hospital tonight, he can stay the weekend. Let me go get something for him” she said but I couldn’t tell if she really wanted him here or if she just agreed because I asked her.

I watched Mum walk away before looking back at Matt who was asking his mother to put David back on the phone.

“I won’t be home for a few days buddy, so Mum is going to take care of you. Listen to her and nothing bad will happen. Have fun at your soccer game and I will take you to school Monday morning okay? You can sleep in my room if you want. I’ll see you soon, love you David” Matt finished and let me hang up the phone.

“Thank you” Matt said as I closed his phone and he took my hand in his.

I smiled at him and knew that everything was going to be okay, that I wasn’t going to let anything happen to him. Moments later Mum and Lily came back to the lounge room with towels, blankets, a spare tooth brush and a set of Dad’s old pyjamas.

“So?” I asked needing to know what had to happen next.

“I am going to have to do a full body exam to rule out if you need to go to hospital or not. So we need to move you onto a flat surface” Lily replied.

Before I knew it, I was speaking without realising what I was saying out loud.

“Let’s take him to my room, my bed is big enough and he can sleep there without having to move again” I never usually speak without thinking, but for some reason I did and the looks that came from Mum and Lily were beyond hilarious.

“Look Mum, there is nothing happening between me and Matt. We have only been together for two weeks. All we do is kiss and talk and not much else, so nothing is going to happen if we stay in my room together for a night or two. Nothing is going to happen especially if Matt is hurt. I’m still the same girl, I haven’t changed overnight, you can trust me and Matt” I had to add because I knew there was no way that I was going to be able to get away with what I had said without backing myself up.

“I wasn’t going to say anything Anna, I know exactly who you are. I just would have like a little bit more time to sit with the idea of you and Matt before sticking you in a room together is all. I just need to process all of this and so will your father” Mum replied.

“I was going to tell you, I was just waiting for the right time”

“Okay Anna, we get it, you and Matt are together, so if you’re happy we are happy too. Now can we move Matt onto your bed so I can look after him or are we just going to stand around talking about our feelings all night?” Lily interrupted before I got to say anything else.

At least she isn’t opposed to the idea of Matt and I.

Matt had been sitting there as we spoke and hadn’t moved or spoken the whole time, but as soon as Lily and I went to help him stand up, he groaned in pain. He was in so much pain, but we had to move him to my room so that he could be more comfortable in the long run. Lily and I slowly took our time so we weren’t hurting Matt as Mum went ahead and got my room ready. By the time we got to my room, Mum had moved all of my bed pillows, moved what was on my bed to my table and put Matt’s things and what he would need on my bedside table. We were finally able to sit him down on the side of my bed. I moved out of Lily’s way so that she could take Matt’s top off. As much as I wanted to be the one to strip him, I didn’t want to hurt him and I knew Lily would be able to do it without hurting him. As his top came off, there was a large bruise starting to develop on his side. I couldn’t look at Matt in so much pain when Lily listened to Matt’s chest again. I turned away from what she was doing so I wouldn’t have to see him and waited until I she said that she was done to turn around again. But I didn’t wait for her to finish, I turned around as soon as I heard Matt yell at the top of his lung.

You’re not supposed to hurt him, you’re supposed to be helping him Lily.

“I’m sorry. I’m just trying to work out whether it is a bruise or if you are internally bleeding” she said as she continued touching Matt’s bruise that was increasing growing and getting darker.

After a few minutes of umming and thinking Lily was sure enough that it was just a bruise and that Matt wasn’t bleeding.

“We need to see if this bruise grows bigger or changes in any way tonight. So you won’t be able to sleep with a top on” Lily said as she grabbed a marker off my table and outlined the entire bruise with it.

I think we can work with that. No don’t think like that Anna, Matt is hurt, and this isn’t the time to think like that.

“What else do we need to worry about?” I needed to know what I was looking out for if I was going to be watching him all night.

“From what I can tell, you have a broken rib under that bruise, which will have to be checked by a doctor at some point to make sure that it is healing properly. I can’t rule out if you have a concussion or not because I don’t have the right tools and because you yourself don’t remember how many times you have been hit or have hit your head on something. So you won’t be able to go to sleep until at least one o’clock in the morning and if he does fall asleep before then Anna, come and get me straight away” Lily said checking her watch “Two Panadol’s now and in the morning will get you through until I examine you again” she said standing up.

“Is that it?”

“Yep, if anything changes just come and get me. Try and get as comfortable as you can and don’t move if you don’t have to, we don’t want that rib breaking anything else. Now go get a tall glass of water and two Panadols and sit tight for a long night” Lily replied heading for the bedroom door.

“Thanks for everything Lily”

“It’s what I’m here for” she laughed as she left.

I looked at Matt before heading to the kitchen for his water and Panadol. When I got back, Mum was moving pillows under Matt’s head to make him comfortable.

“Is that comfortable?” she asked as I handed Matt the Panadols and water.

“Yes, thank you” he replied throwing them both back.

I took the empty glass and followed Mum to the door.

“If you need anything you know where I will be” she said kissing me good night before leaving.

I closed the bedroom door and walked over to my table to leave the empty glass before walking over to the bed.

 

Storm…

If you go to my ‘Extract‘ page you will find the beginning and more of this story that I am writing…

And they did. Everyone except for Michael hugged me and Matt and by the end of all of the hugs I wanted to go home, exhausted from telling them all the same thing, that no one could say anything about any of this to anyone that wasn’t standing with us right now. I then introduced Matt to everyone so he could know their names.

“Matt this is Michael, Phoebe’s boyfriend” I said, hoping deep down inside that the two of them would get along and this would work out for everyone.

“Hi” Matt said shaking Michael’s hand.

“Hey mate, welcome to nuttiest group of girls you could ever meet” Michael replied with a large smile.

I laughed knowing that Michael was one hundred percent right about what he had just told Matt.

“It’s okay, I won’t let anything bad happen to you. Let’s go inside and buy our tickets” I said taking Matt’s hand into mine.

Everyone followed as we headed inside. They already had our tickets so they didn’t have to wait in line with Matt and me. As I turned around to see where they all were, they were all gone, Michael and Phoebe were the only ones waiting for us.

Where did they all go?

“They went in to get seats” Phoebe said yelling from the back of the room as though she had read my mind and had heard what I was thinking.

Matt and I stood in the long line filled with other couples and teenagers and for once I wasn’t jealous of the girls who were holding their boyfriends hand because I was standing there holding my boyfriend hand as well.

“They all liked you by the way”

“Did they?” Matt asked looking down at me.

I nodded my head because of course they liked him, what wasn’t there to like. Matt kissed the top of my head gently in return.

Then it was our turn to buy tickets. I asked the girl behind the counter for the tickets to the movie that had been decided on outside before we came in and as I went to get my wallet Matt stopped me.

“I’ve got this” he said smoothly like he had a handle on everything.

I watched as he handle himself and took the tickets from the girl once she printed them and I could see the satisfaction in his eyes of what he had just done for me and him.

As we walked back over to Phoebe and Michael, I could see Phoebe smiling at me and I didn’t know why.

“Phoebe stop smiling, you’re freaking me out” I said when we reached them.

“I’m sorry, I’m just so happy for you guys. I’m so happy for you Anna” Phoebe said pulling me in for another quick embrace.

“Okay Phoebe. If you don’t let go we will miss the beginning of the movie” I heard Michael say from next to me as I tried to pull myself away from her.

I could see Phoebes face drop into a frown as soon as he said it and I knew something was off.

“Is everything okay between you and Michael?” I asked Phoebe as we walked into the cinema we were allocated to.

“Yeah, he’s just in one of his moods. I refused to have sex with him before we came here tonight so now he is pissed” she replied.

Matt let go of my hand as she spoke.

“I can’t believe that he still does that to you and thinks it’s going to work” I had to ask knowing that this has been going on for a while.

“Yeah, I guess he is set in his ways now. Does it work between the two of you?” Phoebe asked putting her arm around my shoulder.

What? Excuse me.

I couldn’t believe what Phoebe had said, that she would even think like that and worse say it so loudly in front of Matt.

“Sorry, it’s just that Michael and I had sex the second day I knew him, and you said that you guys have known each other for a week, so for all I could know you guys could have done it a hundred times already”

She went there didn’t she? Of course she did, she’s Phoebe, no filter at all.

“I can’t believe that you just said that first of all and second of all it’s not really any of your business if Matt and I are having sex, even though you know I would have told you anyway” it had to be said, I had to put her in line, not just for herself but also for Matt who had now distanced himself from the two of us.

Matt and I hadn’t even talked about sex and I am definitely not ready to talk about it with him yet let alone have it with him right now.

When we finally reached the door to the cinema room, I could sense Matt behind me. Phoebe walked in with Michael without us.

“We don’t have to go in if you don’t want to?” I heard Matt say as he slipped his arms under my arms around my stomach.

His warm embrace was comforting, I gave his arms a quick squeeze.

“I’m sorry if you heard what Phoebe and I were talking about”

“Don’t be. I said I would never pressure you, so don’t let your friends tell you otherwise” Matt said turning me around to face him “Can I kiss you now seeing as everyone here knows about us?”

I smiled softly to say yes, embarrassed that he still thought he had to ask me.

We took our seats next to Phoebe and Michael as the ads started. There are many certain things I like to partake in before and during a movie. I usually go to the movies before the movie starts, I always have come sort of snack and bottle of water in my bag and I hate talking through movies. I don’t get the point of spending money to see a movie and then talk all the way through it, if you’re going to do that you may as well just stay home.

As the ads rolled on and on Phoebe decided to start asking questions, questions she obviously knew she had the wrong answers to.

“So, I’m guessing you two didn’t meet at a university gathering then?” was her first question and I had no choice but to answer her.

“No we didn’t. Do you remember that storm on Tuesday? Well I had to go to the shops and Matt served me. I was freaking out about the storm as usual and Matt followed me to my car to make sure I was okay. He gave me his number and well, here we are today” I quickly ran through before the curtains covering half of the screen pulled open and the lights completely turned off, signalling the beginning of the movie.

The movie started and everything was perfect. It wasn’t a movie that I particularly wanted to see, but I tried to follow it as best as I could. The arm rests can be moved between the seats, and moments into the beginning of the movie Matt pulled it up and I leaned against his chest, with my hand on his leg and his on top of mine. It was everything I ever thought going to the movies with a boy would be like and more. I was comfortable, we were comfortable.

The movie was near the end when I felt something vibrate. I knew it wasn’t my phone because it doesn’t vibrate that loudly and it was obvious that no one else could feel it. I looked at Matt as I sat up properly and he pulled his phone out.

“I have to get this, it’s David. I’ll be right back” he said getting up and almost running out of the cinema.

I wanted to follow Matt out and see what was wrong but Phoebe told me to wait for him to come back. But not being out there with him was hard.

It had to have only been a few minutes, but felt like forever when Matt returned, sitting back in his seat right next to me.

“Is everything okay?”

“Yeah, David’s not a massive fan of storms either and wanted to know how long I was going to be, but he’s okay” Matt replied tucking his hand over mine.

“Are you sure because if you want to leave we can go right now?” I offered knowing that storms can be scary and frightening for young kids.

“He should be fine, but do you think we can skip dinner?”

“Not even a question, I can take you home as soon as the movie is finished” I replied leaning up to give him a quick kiss.

Matt kissed the top of my head and we got back to watching the end of the movie. As the lights faded on and the silence grew from the screen all that could be heard was the rustling of people getting their things to leave and the rain pouring onto the roof, forcefully. We headed out of the cinema together and I could hear them all talking about where they wanted to go for dinner.

“Hey guys, I and Matt have to go. His brother needs him so we are going to head off” I said as we stepped outside under the large canopy that was sheltering us from the rain.

“Next time though Anna?” quiet Lexie asked.

“Of course, next time we can meet up we will go out for a big dinner together, I promise” I said hugging everyone to say good bye.

They all understood and I love all of my friends for that and I couldn’t wait to meet up with them for a proper dinner, we haven’t had one in a while.

“Phoebe do you still need a ride?” the chill in the air was definitely noticeable now.

“Only if it’s okay still? It’s just that Michael has to get home and finish off an assignment that is due tomorrow, I don’t want to impose” there was never a time when Phoebe didn’t like to impose.

“I can still take you home, we just have to go right now” I pointed out hoping she would realise that now meant right now.

There was a final goodbye and then the three of us walked back to the car. We weren’t going to be covered all the way to the car so as soon as we stepped out from under the canopy we had to run. But that didn’t really do anything. The rain was coming down hard and fast and by the time we got to the car and got in, the three of us were all wet.

“Far out I am cold” I shivered turning the car on to start heating it up and then flicked the heat on so then we could heat up.

It was dark and raining and as the car started to warm up, I put my lights on and pulled my seatbelt on. It wasn’t the first time I had driven in such bad weather but it was the first time that I was in a car with Matt and Phoebe at the same time, something I never really thought was going to happen.

“Are you guys warming up?” I asked as we left the shopping centre car park.

“Yep” Matt replied verbally as he placed his hand on my leg and Phoebe nodded to me in the mirror.

For a brief moment Phoebe and I were looking at each other in the rear view mirror and just smiled. I knew she was happy for me and I was happy that she was happy.

“Am I taking you to your Mum or Dad’s place Phoebe?” I asked needing to know which way I had to head.

“To Dad’s please” she replied nicely leaning forward out of her seat.

At least it is closer to Matt’s house too.

“So Matt, what do you do other than make this one smile from ear to ear?” Phoebe asked out of the blue as I drove her home.

Phoebe, seriously.

I shot her a look in the mirror knowing she would look.

“Other than make this one smile, I work 2 jobs, study and look after my mother and brother” Matt graciously replied.

“So you guys don’t spend each day making out with each other?” she had to add.

“Phoebe, really?”

“Okay I’m sorry, it’s your business and you’ll tell me when you’re ready. I’m just so happy for you” she finished as I pulled into her street.

The rain was easing as I pulled into her driveway making it easier for me to see her head inside, safe.

“Well tonight was interesting. We will have to do it again sometime. Anna, talk to you soon and Matt it was really nice meeting you tonight”

“It was nice meeting you to Phoebe” Matt said as she unbuckled and I pulled up the break.

“I’ll talk to you tomorrow” I called out as she opened the door.

I waited until Phoebe was inside before I pulled out of her drive way and headed for Matt house. Matt was quiet.

“Are you okay?” I asked at a set of lights.

“I am now that it is just the two of us”

I know what you mean.

“I know Phoebe is a lot to handle but you’ll get used to her. It just takes some time. Are you really working two jobs and studying?” I was worried that he hadn’t mentioned any of this to me yet.

“Well there is my job at the supermarket, where we met and I work construction sometimes. I am studying architecture part time at university too”

Really? How does he have time to be here with me then?

“Why haven’t you told me any of this?”

“Because I would rather spend my time kissing you and have fun with you, rather than tell you all the boring bits” he replied moving in his seat to face me as I continued to drive.

“I love kissing you too, but it’s important that I know all about you, I want to know everything about you, every little detail there is to know, good and bad, everything that makes you, you” I said finally pulling into his driveway.

We were sitting there as the rain grew harder staring at each other. There was so much we didn’t know about each other and yet so much that we already did, but this felt different, I could feel it in my soul.

I wanted to say something, but all I could get in was his name before he cut me off with a kiss.

“We’re okay. I still love you and I am not hiding things from you, I’m just taking my time telling you. And I will tell you everything, just not right now. I promise” he said taking my head in his hands before kissing me again.

“Let me know when you get home and drive really safe, for me” he said with a quick kiss and then was gone.

I watched as he sprinted to the front door and wanted to follow him, but I knew it wasn’t the right thing to do, not now after all of that. It was really late by the time I got home and for once Mum had listened to me and wasn’t waiting up for me like she usually is. I got ready for bed and sat there a moment thinking before I texted Matt.

OUTGOING SMS: In bed in one piece. I’m so glad you have met my friends and for a great night. Is David okay?

INCOMING SMS: I like picturing you in bed. You’re going to have to meet some of my friends some time now. I had a great night too. Love you. Good night.

Goodnight handsome.

The Day That Romance Died

Valentines-Day-SETX-Weddings

Have you ever wondered about the history of Valentine’s Day? Have you ever thought about how this day actually came to be?

Did you know that this day’s traditions originate from a man’s worst nightmare?

A man, Valentine, signed his name at the bottom of a letter before his was put to death which he had written for his prisoner to say goodbye. Today we celebrate all things joyous and wonderful, but I’m not sure if it is in vain of this poor man or to honour this man. I think between Valentines’ deaths and today, the meaning of his work has lost it meaning and purpose.

The history of Valentine’s Day is clocked in pain and misery and today in the twenty-first century love birds all around the world flock to celebrate with their loved ones. Flowers, chocolates, teddy bears; a trio of all three seem to make a perfect combination for some people. Oh and don’t get me started on the cards. Do you notice that shops seem to spike the price of chocolate and flowers and bears and of course cards by a few dollars just in time for February 14?

 

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You walk into the shops on actual Valentine’s Day and the shops are still completely full of the stuff and you wonder ‘how much stuff can someone buy for the person they love with the words ‘I love you’ ‘you complete me’ and other sappy stuff’.

To me the whole day is a money making scheme pushed down our throats by companies like Hallmark and the like. I know I am a romantic at heart, but the sheer ridiculousness of having one day throughout the year dedicated to showing the person you love how much you love them, is kind of completely bonkers. I mean think about it for longer than a second and you might just agree with me.

Some of you are going to totally disagree with what I am saying, and some of you might even understand. But what I want to let you all know is that this isn’t coming from a bitter place, that me being single has nothing to do with what I have written, it’s actually how I have felt about Valentine’s Day since longer than I can care to remember. If it makes me a cynic then so be it, but there is all something you should know and that is, if someone really loves you they won’t wait for February 14 to show you how much.

Call me cold hearted, stubborn, a sore loser, but it’s true. I am all for love and romance, trust me, but to celebrate it off the back of a man’s death doesn’t make it all that romantic for me. I would prefer it if the person I love or who loves me to tell me that much on any other given day, because then that way, I know television and radio commercials or a trip to the grocery shops didn’t remind them that they love me.

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Stick around…

Storm./..

Head over to my ‘Extract‘ page for the beginning of this story and more.

Thursday went by fast even though I didn’t talk to Matt a lot. He let me know his address and what time I should pick him up, but he was tired from work and needed sleep. I had butterflies all night thinking about everything that could happen and might go down on Friday night. Mum came into my room as I got ready to leave.

“Do you have enough money for tonight? Make sure that you bring a jacket with you” she said before heading back out.

INCOMING SMS: Hey do you think I can get a lift home tonight? Phoebe

OUTGOING SMS: Sure, I have to bring Matt home too.

INCOMING SMS: Who’s Matt?

OUTGOING SMS: The guy I met last week. You said that he could come remember?

INCOMING SMS: Yep, right, you didn’t tell me his name is all. See you soon.

Phoebe, always planning things at the last minute.

I left home as soon as I was ready and headed to Matt’s house. He didn’t live far, but I didn’t want to be late. I parked in his driveway after I saw that his car was parked there. I was beside myself nervous and had to look in the rear view mirror once more before I left to make sure that I looked okay. I grabbed my phone and the car keys and got out. As I walked towards the front door, the butterflies within were fluttering furiously. I stood in front of the front door for a few minutes, took a deep breath and then knocked.

There was no response. I gave it a few moments and then knocked again. This time I could hear shoes clobbering throughout the house behind the front door. The door finally opened and there was Matt.

“Sorry I had the radio on and didn’t hear the door. Come in” Matt said as he opened the door completely for me.

I walked in and thanked him and as just as he closed the door he grabbed my hip and brought me closer to him.

“Where are you going?” he asked looking down to me as his eyes examined my face before bringing his lips to mine.

I put my arms around his neck and found myself intoxicated by his perfume. He was the perfect scent of sweet and salty. Perfect for me.

“Hi” he said once he finished kissing me.

“Hi”

“You look amazing” Matt took my hand and led me up the stairs, not knowing where this was going.

 

Matt pushed open a slightly ajar door and I saw a little boy sitting on his bed. I presumed that it was David, his brother. But that wasn’t all that I saw. I saw Matt, everywhere. I hadn’t known Matt for long, but from everything I already knew about him, I knew that everything in this room was Matt’s and it all meant something to him. The hand draw pictures tacked onto the wall above his table. The books sitting haphazardly all over cupboards and bedside tables. Everything screamed Matt and I loved it.

“David this is Anna, the girl I was tell you about last night, remember?” Matt asked as we walked in.

“Hi” a soft whisper escaped his lips, gently.

“Hello David, it is so nice to meet you. Your brother here has told me so much about you. It’s great to finally meet you in the flesh”

But he didn’t respond, he just stood there colouring in the book page that was sitting on his lap.

“He’s not a big talker, he just has to get used to you first is all. David do you want to stay in here tonight?” Matt asked crouching down on his knees to get on his level.

There was a slight nod that I could see.

“Well then you know the rules. Television off by eight thirty at the latest and if you get hungry you can look for my hidden food, but don’t eat all of it because you might get sick and you don’t want that now do you. Mum will be downstairs all night, but if something is wrong call me first and I will be home as fast as I can. You can leave the light on if you want okay? Now Anna and I have to get going now but we will be back soon okay?” Matt told David before kissing the top of his shaggy brown hair.

“I can call you if I need you?” David whimpered.

“Of course buddy. Now I’ll lock the doors downstairs so there is nothing to be scared about because Mum is right downstairs. I’ll see you soon buddy”

How cute!

With a quick smile we walked out and closed the door along with us.

“I just have to say bye to Mum” Matt said taking my hand.

We walked down the stairs and followed the hallway to the end of the house to another door. Matt didn’t open the door, he just talked through it, telling his mother that he was leaving and that if anything happened that his phone will be on. But no one replied from the other side. I wondered what the story was, but I was in no position to ask such personal questions, not yet anyway.

It wasn’t cold just yet, but it was going to turn into one of those nights, so Matt grabbed his jacket before walking back to the car. I waited for him with the heat on because my feet were cold. I had never been in this position before. I had never driven a guy around, let alone my boyfriend. Hell a lot of things have happened during this week that have never happened to me before. It was great experiencing all of these normal things for once. Lily has a rule anyway, no one except for me and her are to drive the car, so Matt wasn’t going to be able to drive it anyway.

I watched Matt as he walked back to the car and couldn’t help but smile.

“What are you smiling about?” he asked as he got in and closed the door.

“Nothing, I’m just happy” I replied pulling my seatbelt over my shoulder.

“Happy looks good on you” Matt’s lips were on mine before I even had the chance to think.

Before I knew it we were sitting there in Lily’s car making out. The car was running and the heat that I had turned on was now adding the heat we were creating ourselves. I could feel sweat gathering on my forehead as we continued.

“Wait” I said pulling myself away from Matt “We should go or we will be late and the late time I was late to meet my friends I didn’t stop hearing about it for six months” the heat was too much to handle, I had to open a window.

Matt didn’t say anything but I could see him giggling to himself as I gently patted the sweat on my forehead away.

“Why are you laughing?” I had to ask.

“Because most girls would cancel their plans and make their boyfriends take them to their bedrooms. You instead insist that we leave” he replied running his hand through his hair.

“Well sorry that I’m not like every other girl. I promised Phoebe that I wouldn’t be late and I’m not like everyone else, I am my own person and I hope that that isn’t a problem for you” I flicked the heat off and turned the car lights on and put my seatbelt on properly.

“I like that you are your own person and I wouldn’t stop you from being yourself. Does Phoebe know about us?”

“No she doesn’t, so no hand holding or kissing. Will you be able to manage that?” it sounded more condescending than I intended.

“Mm, let me think” Matt said leaning over and kissed my cheek again.

“I’m serious Matt, they all think that I am bringing a friend who I met last week who was looking for someone to show them around. No funny business”

“Okay no kissing, no hand holding” he said and poked my leg.

I grabbed his finger and didn’t let go for a while.

“That hurt” I said a few minutes and let go.

“Sorry” Matt replied sheepishly and rubbed my leg.

I placed my hand back on the wheel and continued to drive towards the cinemas. Matt’s hand was on my leg and it didn’t move.

His hand is on my leg, just like in all those movies that I have watched.

At the last red light before we entered the cinema complex I quickly looked at Matt’s hand that was still on my leg and smiled. He saw me smile and rubbed my leg. As I drove into the parking station I could see the girls waiting outside the cinema doors.

“That’s them” I pointed out as I drove past them slowly before heading off to find a spot for the car.

I parked the car as soon as I could find a spot and felt the butterflies grow again as I turned the engine off.

“Okay so you have to remember”

Matt cut me off before I could tell him what I needed to tell him. He knew what he had to say and how he had to act and why we were here. It was reassuring to know that Matt had been listening to me and that he wasn’t going to screw this up. There was too much on the line for this to not work.

“Now shut up and kiss me before we get out of the car” Matt said taking off his seatbelt and leaning over to me.

We kissed for a few minutes before I knew we had to stop or we would get caught. I grabbed my jacket and put it on as it was now cold enough for it.

Thanks for the tip Mum.

Matt put his jacket it on as well and before I knew it I grabbed my bag and locked the car and we were heading towards the doors. I wanted to take his hand in mine, I could feel the energy that was pulsating between the two of us and we weren’t even touching. It was strong. Matt must have felt it as well because he took my hand in his.

“Matt”

“They can’t see us” he tried to tell me and squeezed my hand.

We were almost near the girls and I could see Phoebe. She saw us and then I realised that we were still holding hands.

Crap.

As soon as I knew Phoebe had seen us holding hands, I dropped Matt’s hand and could see the smile creep over her face. She started running towards us very enthusiastically.

“That’s Phoebe” I said to Matt before she could reach us to warn him, although I knew that that wasn’t going to do anything.

“Anna” she yelled getting closer.

“Phoebe” I yelled back but not as loud as she had as she jumped onto me.

“How long?” she asked whispering into my ear without letting go of me.

Dammit she is good.

“Almost a week” I whispered back.

I knew that the charade was over, that there was no way that what Matt and I had planned on happening was going to happen now, now that Phoebe knows. Phoebe finally let go and looked at Matt.

“Phoebe this is Matt, Matt this is the illustrious Phoebe” I said once she finally stepped away from me.

“Hi Matt” Phoebe said and pulled him into a hug.

Why does she have to hug everyone?

I could see the shock and confusion written on his face, wondering why my friend was hugging him when they had only just met.

“Sorry” I said without volume.

“Matt, you break her heart I will break your dick so fast that you won’t even realise” Phoebe said when she let go of Matt.

Matt looked at me for help but all I could do was say sorry again.

“You don’t have to worry about that, I will never break her heart” he said and took my hand in his again.

“Argh look at the two of you. You’re so cute. The girls are going to flip when they see you guys holding hands” Phoebe said taping my cheeks.

“I think that your squeal before may have already told them” I said nodding towards them.

They were all looking at me, at us and I could see that they were already talking about us.

“Phoebe no one out of this group can know about us yet, we haven’t told out families yet, so nothing online please” I had to tell her as we started walking back to the group because I knew that she would go and say something.

“My lips are sealed” she replied walking next to me.

I looked at Matt and he looked freaked out, out of control, like he didn’t want to be here with me anymore. I knew that this was just the beginning of the night.

“They are all probably going to hug you now” I said to let him know before they pounced and squeezed his hand gently.

“Okay” he was nervous and I could hear it in his voice.

I’m guessing that Matt doesn’t like to be hugged much.

Storm…../..

*Find the beginning of this story here

“When did you move here?” I asked curious.

“When I was ten, Mum and Dad moved us to London because Dad got a better job offer. Then when I was fifteen they got divorced and Mum took me and David and moved us to Australia. It’s been almost seven years now” Matt replied taking my hand that was on my lap.

Oh no he’s from a broken home.

I didn’t know what to say to him. I didn’t know what the appropriate answer or comeback was to your boyfriend telling you that his parents got a divorce. I squeezed his hand to let him know that I was there for him if he wanted to talk.

He kept his hand in mine the entire way to the restaurant. It didn’t take long to get there and once we were there I knew exactly where he was taking me. Matt parked the car in front of the restaurant and told me to wait in the car. As I waited for Matt to walk around to my side of the car to open the door, I stared out to the restaurant and I wondered how many times I had been past the restaurant wishing to go in.

How many times have I wanted to go here and now I am finally here, with a guy of all things. With Matt.

“Matthew, it’s so good to see you. How have you been my boy? And who is this lovely lady you have brought with you?” a man with a strong English accent said as the restaurant door closed behind us.

“Mr Core this is Anna. Anna this is Mr Core he owns the restaurant” Matt said after shaking his hand.

“It’s a pleasure to meet you Anna. You must be one special girl if Matthew is bringing you here” Mr Core said showing us to a table by the window.

Doesn’t Matt bring anyone else here? Am I the first girl he has brought here?

Mr. Core left us with a menu each and a bottle of cold water, giving us time to pick what we wanted to eat.

“Do you come here often?” I asked as I opened my menu.

“Umm yeah I do actually. When we first moved to Sydney, Mum wasn’t really around and I didn’t really know how to cook so I used to bring David here hoping that we could have something to eat with the little money we had and pretend that everything was okay at home. Eventually we started coming here whenever we had run out of food at home and didn’t have money to get more. Mr. Core and I became good friends, he is like a father to me and David and made sure we ate every day and then I started to work here when I was allowed to and started paying him back for all the meals he supplied us. Without Mr. Core and his wife we couldn’t have gotten through the first few years we were here. But now I can come here and pay for my food and know that Mr. Core is still here for me” Matt replied putting his menu down and looking me straight in the eyes.

Oh Matt.

“Anyway, do you know what you are going to order?” Matt asked trying to change the subject.

I took his hand and looked at him.

“Please no pity” he said looking back at me.

“Matt I’m not looking at you with pity; I am simply looking at you thinking why on earth I am only meeting you now” I said with a smile.

“Yeah?”

“Matt I want to know everything there is to know about you good or bad. So don’t hold back on me now” I replied taking my hand away from his, glancing at the menu one more time and putting it back on the table.

“Do you know how much I love you right now?” Matt said leaning across the table and kissed me.

Not as much as I love you.

A waitress came to our table a few minutes later and took our order. I learnt that Matt is exactly like me and orders burgers where ever he goes and agrees that there is no such thing as a bad time for a burger. Another common denominator between us.

As we waited for our meal I watched the waves crashing and completely zoned out.

“You do that a lot don’t you?” Matt asked snapping me back to reality.

“Huh? What? Sorry”

“It’s okay, the view takes some time getting used to; trust me David would stare out the window for hours when he was a baby” Matt replied taking my hand in his.

Our meals arrived just as after Matt finished his sentence. He said thank you to the girl who he obviously knows.

“The food looks amazing” I said looking at the burger that had been placed in front of me.

“It tastes even better” Matt said picking up half of his burger.

I watched him take a bite of his burger.

My god he makes eating sexy too.

I could have sat there for hours watching him eat, but I didn’t want to waste the amazing smelling burger that was sitting in front of me. I lifted half my burger up from the plate and took a bite out of it.

“Mm that is good” I said swallowing my food.

Matt laughed at me and I could feel the sauce running down my chin.

“I’m sorry” I laughed “I’m not being very lady like” I said picking up my napkin and wiping my mouth.

He laughed at me again and picked up his napkin.

“Here” Matt said wiping my chin again, clean.

“You missed a bit”

“I always make a mess of myself whenever I eat a burger. But I love them too much to stop eating them”

“Hey you don’t have to explain yourself to me. The mess makes you look cute” He replied before taking another bite of his burger.

My mess makes me look cute. Did he write the book of romance?

We continued to eat our meal as we talked. The burger was amazing, the chips were even better and the company was to die for. Matt finished his food moment before I did.

“I understand why you keep coming here now and bring everyone with you”

“Actually, you are the only other person I have brought here other than Mum and David” Matt said after taking a sip of water.

“This place means too much to me. I didn’t want to ruin it by bring girls here that didn’t mean anything to me”

I sat back in my seat and just looked at him. I knew it wasn’t the right time or place to ask him about past relationships even though he has just mentioned other girls. We didn’t talk for a few minutes, we reviled in the silence.

“I presume you enjoyed your meal” Mr. Core asked coming to the table.

“Absolutely. That was the best burger I have ever eaten. Thank you so much” I replied with a smile on my face.

“Anna you can come back here whenever you want. Matthew I like this girl. Would you like to see the dessert menu?” Mr. Core asked picking up the last fork on the table.

“Um, actually I thought we could go home and have dessert?” Matt said looking at me.

“Sure, if you want”

No dessert? What do you have planned Matt?

“Can I please have the bill Mr. Core?” Matt asked looking at him after breaking his stare from me.

“No, today is on the house” He replied tapping him on the cheek like he was his own son.

“Thanks”

As I got up from the table I noticed Matt had already disappeared. He was at the door talking to Mr. Core. The look on their faces told me that they had gone through so much together. If I hadn’t known better I could have sworn that they were father and son.

As we walked to the car hand in hand after they finished talking and I wondered what was going to happen next, after all Matt did go to the effort of denying me dessert so we could go home.

Maybe he has a surprise at home for me?

Once we were in the car I checked my phone.

“Is everything okay?” Matt asked as he noticed me staring at my phone.

“Yeah, what’s the time?”

“It is almost two o’clock. Why?”

“Lily is catching the earlier ferry. She docks at three” I replied putting my phone away and putting my seatbelt on.

“That’s okay I need to pick up David at three. So we can go back to your house for a little bit and then we’ll both leave at two-thirty to pick them up” he replied putting the car in gear.

Sounds like a plan.

“Well aren’t you a man with a plan?”

“I am but that wasn’t the plan I had come up with, but thirty minutes of making out with you might just be enough for now” he replied as we drove away from the restaurant.

We sat in silence as Matt drove us back to my house. It wasn’t an awkward silence, it was a nice peaceful silence, and we didn’t need to feel the air with noise, sitting in silence was nice.

Suddenly as Matt continued to drive something came over me, a feeling that wasn’t going to go away until I asked Matt how he was feeling. It felt like the right time to talk about our relationship now that we’ve gone on what I presume to be our first date.

“Hey Matt?”

“Yes Anna” Matt replied turning a corner.

“Do you think this is weird?”

“What’s weird?”

Now that I have started I can’t turn back.

“The situation we are in. We met yesterday morning and we have already told each other that we love one another” Matt was pulling over “but we don’t know each other and I am not trying to sound ungrateful because believe you me I have never been this happy, but don’t you think that we are moving too fast and that we will burn out to early?” I asked nervously knowing I wasn’t going to settle until I knew his response.

Matt had completely pulled the car over and had parked it. I turned to face him as turned in his seat to face me. He took my hands in his and looked at me.

“Do you believe in love at first sight?” he asked.

“Yes of course I do. But what has that got to do with anything?”

“Do you believe in fate and destiny?” he asked another question.

“Yes to some extent I suppose I do”

“Anna I think that it was fate that brought you to my counter yesterday morning, and I believe that it was written in our destiny to meet each other yesterday. My mother used to say to me that love is only worth it if you love them from the moment you meet them. Anna I love you and I want to get to know you and I know we missed the whole awkward courting part but we can go back and do all of that if you want or we can keep going forward. I think we could be great together”

“I think you’re great Matt” I started.

“But?”

“I’m scared that this is not real, I’m scared that after all this time waiting to be with someone my mind is playing some sick joke on me and has made you up. I know that sounds stupid, but it’s how I feel”

“Does this feel real?” Matt asked and then kissed me.

Of course this is real. If it wasn’t would you have just felt like that from one kiss? You know this is really Anna.

“Yes” I said leaning my forehead against his.

My eyes started to tear up and I could feel a tear escape. Matt placed his hands on my cheeks and pulled back.

“If you think that this is a mistake or we are going to fast we can slow down. We can walk away for a few days and then start as friends, hang out, go to movies the whole courtship” Matt said staring into my eyes.

“Can you drive me home?” I didn’t reply to his suggestion because I wanted to talk to him in private but as soon as I said it both his hands and smile dropped.

He started the car and drove off. We didn’t speak the whole way back to my house. Once we got home and Matt parked in the driveway I looked at him.

He’s sad. What have I just done? I’ve ruined this.

“Can you please come inside with me?” I asked hoping that he would.

He opened the door and jumped out. I opened the front door and walked in. I took his hand and walked him inside. I took off my shoes and jacket and sat on my bed. I patted for him to sit down and he took off his shoes. Slowly he walked over to the bed and sat right next to me. Yesterday we had the blanket just over our legs; today however I wanted the blanket over our heads, to bring us closer.

We sat cross legged facing each other with the blanket above our heads.

“Matt I didn’t say any of that to hurt you”

“This feels like déjà vu” he replied.

“That’s because I didn’t want to say what I want to say in public and I wanted to make sure you were actually listening to me when I spoke” I said taking his hand in mine.

“If you could would you take back saying I love you to me yesterday?” I asked.

“No”

“Why not?”

“Why do you want to know this for?” he replied getting angry.

“Indulge me please”

“I said I love you yesterday because that is how I felt and I wanted to be open and honest with you from the start, so I said it”

“I only ask because I wanted to hear you say that you love me again” I said taking his hands.

“Matt I don’t want to take it slow, I don’t want to be just friends or do the whole courtship thing. I actually want to be at the point where you don’t have to ask permission to walk inside my house or room or ask me if you can kiss me. I want us to be at the point where we can say and do anything we want and be one hundred percent comfortable with each other”

“I want all of that too, but why did you freak out in the car?”

“Because I am an idiot and it is what I do, freak out and because for the longest of time and especially after the whole Daniel thing I haven’t really learnt how to trust my feelings and other people especially guys. I love you Matt and as crazy as it sounds if you asked me to marry you right now I would probably say yes”

Please don’t ask me, please don’t ask me. Why did you just say that Anna?

He looked at me like he had had an idea and I had to stop him just in case he was going to ask.

“Please don’t ask me because I don’t think I have the strength to say no to you” I quickly said before he opened his mouth.

“I had thought about it, but maybe I’ll wait a few more days” he said with a kiss.

I laughed to show him that we were okay and that I hoped everything would go back to normal.

Don’t kid yourself kid, you just said you would marry him out loud.

“Just one more thing before I ask if we are okay. What am I supposed to do about my friends and family?”

“We’ll take it one day at a time and if that doesn’t work we can always say that we meant online” Matt said with a laugh before he kissed me again.

“Hey that’s not funny” I said pushing him away.

Yes it was.

“Yes it was” we said at the same time.

We kissed again and again and again eventually I was on my back and Matt was on top of me.

“Sorry for freaking out before” I said caressing his cheek.

“Sorry for not finding you earlier”

I love you.

We keep kissing until all of a sudden something beeped.

“What was that?” I asked as Matt pulled away.

“My watch, so I don’t forget to pick up David” he said turning off the beeping

“I guess that means we must stop and go our separate ways”

“I suppose one more kiss won’t hurt anyone”

What was supposed to be one more kiss was five minutes and now we were both late.

“Okay now we have to go”

“Yeah before Lily rings” I said putting my shoes on again.

I locked the front door behind us and stopped at my car.

“I don’t want to go” I said leaning on the car and wrapping my arms around his neck.

“Neither do I but David will be waiting for me” Matt said with a kiss.

“You and David must be really close”

“We are. For the longest time it was just me and him and a mother that was never around. He’s my best friend and I’m his. He’s going to love you when he meets you”

“Yeah?”

“Absolutely, but if I don’t leave to pick him up he’s not going to be happy”

“Go on than get out of here. Lily should be docking soon anyway” I said pushing off the car and opening the door.

“Can I text you later tonight?”

“I wouldn’t want it any other way” I said with a kiss and he was off to his car.

I waited for Matt to reverse out of the drive way before I moved the car. He beeped and was off.

Dude, he just left calm down. He said he is going to text later and he will. Just go and pick up Lily. Everything is going to be okay.

Book Riot and a good tip

There is a website I came across a few years ago when I was studying for university that I still go back and use and love to read all the time. It is called Book Riot. This is there link:

http://bookriot.com/

This website is a wonder for people who like to read and want to keep up to date with all things books from all over the world and it is also a great tool for writers. I like to use this website, not only for inspiration for my blog 🙂 but also for my writing.

From things like how to organise your bookshelves according to particular genres and authors and so on to things like what are the best young adult books to read before they turn into movies for a particular year.

I love this website and I think you guys will too. If you don’t already know about it, or do know about it, I would recommend that you all have a peruse on it and feel just how fun and joyful books can make people.

Stick around…

Storm…./..

*Storm, the story continues. Find more of this story under Extracts.

Morning eventually broke and the sun shoon through the window above my bed and straight into my picture of the Eiffel Tower.

Matt.

He was my last thought last night and the first thing that popped into my mind this morning. I started to think about everything we could do together like going out to dinner or to the movies, hang out, talk about weird things for hours on end, meeting the family and so on. I was getting a head of myself but it felt good to be able to look forward to something other than the airing of a television show. I was lying there just thinking about everything when I heard my father. My father works all the time with his demanding job as a public defender. When he comes home sometimes he can be in a foul mood, which is understandable after what he has to deal with at work, but it doesn’t help when he has a drink or two. It’s not that I don’t love him, it’s just that his moods and his habits drive me insane and if he puts me in a bad mood than I am in a bad mood for the rest of the day. So to get rid of this conundrum, I limit my time with him. Like this morning, I know he is going to work so I usually stay in my room until he goes, or I walk out of my room just before he opens the front door. A technique I had perfected by the age of fifteen.

“When are you going to stop doing that?” Mum asked as Dad shut the front door and I walked into the lounge room to find her on her second coffee of the day.

“Do what? I replied trying to deflect the question, knowing exactly what she meant.

“Wait for your father to leave before you come out of your room”

“I can’t really see myself not doing it” I replied walking towards the kitchen.

Mum had already started her busy day by taking Lily to the ferry wharf so she can go to university. She doesn’t usually start work until ten o’clock on a Wednesday and finishes late.

Lily is only at university for a few hours today so I won’t have the house to myself all day. I had plenty to do but didn’t want to do any of it.  My mind was focused on Matt. I wanted to know what he was doing, what he was wearing, what he was thinking and how he was feeling.

Should I text him? Will he think I am desperate if I do? What am I supposed to do?

After Mum left to go to work, I got stuck into my university work that I needed done by yesterday. It had only been fifty minutes and I was already bored from studying. I needed a distraction. I spun around on my chair trying to come up with something that I could do.

I’m so bored. Where can I go to not be bored?

With little money and friends busy at university or work during the week, leaving us with only the weekend to catch-up on, I had nothing to do and nowhere to go with anyone. I was running out of options when my phone started ringing.

RING RING

Thank you God, I was about to go crazy.

It was Matt and this was going to be our very first telephone conversation.

“Hi” I answered the phone trying not to give away how happy I was to finally be talking to him again.

“Hi, how did you sleep last night?” he asked.

“It was the best sleep I have had in a very long time”

“That is good to hear. I didn’t reply to your message, because I figured that you would have gone to sleep as soon as you pressed ‘send’ on your last one. What are your plans for today?” he asked.

Play it cool Anna. Don’t just say that you’re not busy. Let him do some of the hard work.

“Well Mum and Dad are working late again tonight and I have to pick up Lily from the ferry wharf this afternoon. I had planned to do some studying but I’m already bored of it, how about you?”

Oh yeah, that is totally keeping it cool.

“Other than picking up my brother from school at three I am free. Do you want to do something?”

Absolutely, of course I do you idiot.

“I’m guessing you’re trying to work out what to say without saying a straight out yes?” Matt asked when I didn’t reply immediately.

He knows me so well already.

“I was trying but nothing was coming to me”

“I’ll come by your house soon and we can work out what to do from there”

“Sounds great, I’ll see you soon” I replied and then hung up with a face full of smile.

Yes I did it, he’s coming over and soon I will be able to kiss his beautiful lips again.

A few minutes passed and I still had the phone in my hand as though I was waiting for it to ring again. I woke up out of my day dreaming and turned around and faced my laptop. I had a list of things to do post-it noted on the side of my computer and the longer I looked at the list the faster I was able to make up excuses not to do anything on them.

Knowing that Matt said soon I decided to pick something on the list and do it so I could take my mind off him and the butterflies that had turned into the size of moths in my stomach.

Just as I started to concentrate on my first task I heard a knock on the front door.

KNOCK KNOCK

I looked at the computer clock only to see that it had been twenty minutes since Matt had called. I slowly walked to the door and opened it. Behind the fly screen stood Matt who had a smile that went from ear to ear. I unlocked the fly screen and Matt took the handle to open it. I smiled.

No picnic basket?

I stepped back so that he would have room to get through the door. As he stepped inside and shut the door behind him he did not take his eyes off me for one second. We didn’t speak nor move; we just stood there in front of the door staring at each other before Matt leaned forward and grabbed me to bring me in for a kiss.

“Hi” Matt said when he removed his lips from mine.

“Hi” I replied dreamily.

He went to kiss me again but I put my hand over his mouth first. It’s not that I didn’t want to kiss him; I just didn’t want to do it at my front door.

“As much as I absolutely love kissing you, I would rather not do it in front of my neighbours. Let’s go to my room”

I took his hand and walked him to my room with a bit of force but only to speed him up so we could kiss more.

“Everything looks so different with that blind open” Matt said as I sat on my chair and he sat on my bed.

“It’s amazing what some sun can do after a storm” I replied turning back around to face Matt after quickly saving the work I had done on my laptop.

“What are you doing over there? I can’t kiss you if you are all the way over there” Matt said pulling my chair until it was between his legs.

He put his hands on the sides of my face and kissed me, but pulled back after one kiss.

What are you doing? You don’t need my permission to kiss me.

“Who are you?” Matt asked staring into my eyes and then proceeded to kiss me.

Who am I, more like who are you and where have you been all my life?

We kissed and continued to kiss for a few minutes until I pulled away from Matt as my back stiffened.

“Why did you just do that?”

“My back hurts” I replied quietly placing my hand on my lower back to sit me up properly.

“Here I know a way of making it better” Matt said patting on the spot next to him.

I moved to sit next to him but found that Matt had other plans. He started to kiss me and eventually we were horizontal and slightly intertwined.

“Better?” he asked brushing my hair behind my ear as I lay under him with my legs knotted in his.

“Much” I replied with a smile.

We kissed and kissed and I swear we were doing it for hours.

“Holy crap what’s the time?” I pulled away, confused and panicked.

“It’s midday. Why what’s wrong?” Matt replied after looking at his watch.

Holy crap what was that? How did I just lose all sense of time?

I didn’t reply because I didn’t know what to say.

“Did you just get lost in your first proper make out session?” Matt said sitting up on his elbow.

“Oh my god I did, didn’t I? I’m such a loser. I’m so embarrassed” I replied pulling Matts’ top down to cover my face.

“No don’t be embarrassed. It’s cute. I’ve never seen it happen to anyone. Anna it’s okay it just meant that for a few minutes you weren’t thinking and just feeling happy, in the moment.”

“Yeah, or does it mean I am a freak?” I said tucking myself into his chest again.

“Anna you are not a freak. Kissing is new to you, your body and mind is enjoying it. Don’t over analyse it, some people including myself would love to experience what you just experienced”

“Really, it’s never happened to you?” I asked coming out from his chest.

“I would love to say that it has but that would be a lie and honestly no one has ever meant that much to me that their kisses made me get lost in the moment” Matt said with another kiss.

We kissed for a few more minutes but this time I didn’t get lost. This time I was right there thinking about Matt. The kisses got intense and hotter and then suddenly Matt pulled away and jumped off the bed.

“Matt?” I asked as he ran out the bedroom door.

“Please give me a minute” he replied from what sounded like the lounge room.

No way! No way! Did that really just happen to me? Do I really have that effect on him, already?

“Are you okay?” I shouted.

“Yep, I just need a minute to cool down” he replied shyly from the other room.

Don’t laugh at Matt, don’t laugh, and don’t laugh. It is perfectly normal for this to happen to guys. You should take it as a compliment, really. Good work Anna.

After a few minutes Matt walked back into the room and sat on the bed next to me. I took his hand and just held it.

“Do you want to go and have some lunch?” I asked looking at his face which seemed to be in a state of sad and embarrassed.

He leant in and kissed me.

“Thank you”

“For what?” I asked.

“For changing subject and I know the perfect spot”

Matt didn’t tell me where we were going to be going so I quickly went to the bathroom and checked to see that what I was wearing was good enough to wear in public. When I came out refreshed, I caught Matt staring at me.

Could he get any cuter?

“The back door Anna?” Matt said after I collected my bag and we headed to the front door.

“What about it?” I asked confused as to why he was talking about the back door.

“Are you going to close it?” he pointed out to it as I stood there open.

Idiot, how could you forget the back door?

“Oh crap. See what you do to me” I said giving him my bag and walking to the back door to shut it.

After closing and locking the back door, we headed to Matt’s car, where Matt opened the passenger door for me. It was cute and rustic as he was and although it looked rough around the edges, it looked like it was being well looked after and well used by Matt.

“Thank you” I said as he helped me in and closed the door for me.

My first car ride with a guy, other than a friends’ boyfriend of course.

As Matt walked over to his side of the car, I couldn’t help think about what the neighbours might be thinking about if they were watching. But to be honest I didn’t really care. It’s not like they have never seen two people kiss before or hold hand. I know they have never seen me do any of that, but it wasn’t like it was never going to happen.

“So where are we going?” I asked once Matt had started the car.

“You’re going to love it. I have been going to this place since I moved here and the food is amazing” Matt replied driving out of the driveway and down the street.