When I got up the next morning, Riley was still asleep, which I expected. I had woken up earlier than normal so I could drive myself over to my place and change before heading over to practice. When I finally reached the arena, I bolted into the locker room, noticing I was running late.
“Hey man, what’s with the shit-eating grin?” Jordan asked as I approached. I hadn’t even noticed I’d been smiling.
“Oh, I don’t know. Nothing,” I answered throwing my bag down.
“Oh, I think I know. Someone got laid last night!” he screamed punching me in the arm. A couple of the guys whistled and clapped before returning to dressing.
“Alright, maybe I did. But it was kind of a big deal, okay?”
“Max Talbot getting a lay is a big deal?! I thought it was an everyday occurrence.”
“Shut up, Staalsy. It was…uh…the first time with Riley.”
“Dude. You’re fucking with me right? You’ve been hanging around with her for weeks and this is the first time you’ve fucked her?”
“Okay first of all, can we not scream this in a public venue? And second of all, can we not say I ‘fucked’ her?”
“Did you lose your dick sometime between yesterday and today? Since when is the word ‘fucked’ off limits? And, dude, I can’t believe she would even touch you with a ten foot pole. Your face is so fucked up.” Just as I was about to reply, Dan came over to us.
“Trainer, Talbot,” he said to me sternly. I nodded and made my way to the trainer, Chris. When I entered the room, I looked to my left and into a little mirror. I still looked like a complete horror show. And, if I wasn’t seeing things, it looked like my face had gotten worse.
“Um, hey Chris,” I called out. He had his back to me and was writing quickly in a notebook.
“What do you need, Max?” he asked without turning around.
“Well, Coach thinks you should have a look at me,” I answered. Chris finished up his writing and turned around to face me.
“Holy hell! I heard about the fight, but I didn’t think it was this bad.” He immediately began poking and prodding, much to my dissatisfaction. Everything on my face hurt and I’m pretty sure a good majority of it was swollen. “It’s not looking good for you, Talbot. You’ve got some pretty serious bruising going on under your right cheekbone. Your nose isn’t broken though, so that’s a plus. And what’s this cut on the side of your head?” I reached up and felt a sore spot near my hairline on the left side of my head. “Jesus, can you even put your helmet on without being in pain? Go get it.” I did as I was told and came back with the helmet. “Put it on.” I placed the helmet on my head and tried to minimize the wincing and grimaces I knew I was making. “You’re not playing tonight. You need a day.”
“No, seriously, I’m fine,” I protested.
“No, seriously, you’re not,” he replied. “You should go home. I’ll tell Dan.”
“I’m fine though! At least let me practice!” It was too late though. Chris left to go find Dan and I was left sitting alone until he returned five minutes later.
“Go on, go home. Just make sure you’re back here tonight. We’ve got a flight to catch to St. Louis.” I sighed dramatically, but left. I really wanted to see Riley, but I wanted to give her some space too. I was sure she’d get sick of me if we saw each other too often. So, I decided to take a drive. I needed some time to clear my head anyway. I started the engine, and took off, with no particular destination. While I was driving I thought about Riley mostly. Things were starting to go the way I had wanted them to go. I loved her, she loved me. That part was good. That made me feel amazing. There’s no better feeling than to love someone unconditionally and have them love you back the same way. I could spend hours talking to her about absolutely nothing. I loved the way I could tease her mercilessly about things, but I also loved how she could dish it right back. She complimented me. I wanted to hold her and kiss her all the time. I wanted to put a huge ass ring on her left hand. I wanted to show everyone that she was mine and solely mine. But…Geno. That son of a bitch was standing in my way. He wanted her too, that was easy to see. Just look at my face. He wasn’t willing to back down either. If he wasn’t in the picture though, things would be so much easier. All I wanted to do was be able to walk down the street holding her hand! Was that too much to ask? I felt like I was constantly fighting an uphill battle. No matter how hard I fought, there was always someone standing in my way, waiting to take Riley away from me. I had to consistently be on my guard so as not to allow myself to lose her. I had won for now, but it felt like I could never quite keep a hold on her. I continued to let my mind wander for a few hours, until returning to Riley’s house. I opened the door and frowned at the fact that it was unlocked.
“You know, you really should keep that door locked. You never know who could walk in here,” I called out as I entered the house.
“Alright, love you too, bye,” I heard Riley’s voice in the living room, then I heard the clicking of the phone. “Hey, Maxie.” She greeted me at the doorway, throwing her arms around my neck.
“Do you want the good news or the bad news first?” I sighed. Oh great, just something else to screw us over.
“Bad then good,” I replied.
“Well the bad news is that my parents are coming to visit. But the good news is that I’ve been thinking about having sex with you. All. Day. Long.” She didn’t even leave time for a breath between those two phrases and the majority of blood in my body began to rush southward. I knew she was trying to distract me, so I had to keep my focus.
“Oh, really?” I managed to ask. “When?”
“Next Saturday,” she replied, hooking a finger in my beltloop. I immediately thought of 50 different ways I could have her underneath me in the next ten seconds.
“Mmm, it is.” She moved her mouth to my jaw line. “Hey! Let’s go upstairs.” She began dragging me up towards her bedroom and since my mine was not really in a proper functioning state, I followed her wordlessly. I allowed her to guide me towards the bed, push me backwards, and sit in my lap. Soon my t-shirt was fluttering to the floor.
“Should I…should I be concerned? You know, about this?”
“No and can you stop talking? I’m trying to concentrate on pleasing you.” The way she drew out those last two words made me salivate at the thought of her pleasing me and I could think of quite a few ways that could be done. But no! I wouldn’t let her distract me with sex.
“But…where…are…they…staying?” I asked when her mouth wasn’t covering my own.
“Jesus, Max!” she got off of me and walked across the room, perching herself in a comfortable looking chair. My mind automatically conjured up an image of us having sex in that chair. See what she’s done? I can’t even think straight now! “Here I am trying to have what I was certain was going to be amazing sex with you and all you can talk about is my parents? You do know that tends to be a major turnoff right?”
“Yes I know! I’m sorry, but you just sprung this on me and I wanted to know what the deal was. But we can talk about it after.” I admit it, I’m weak when it comes to her.
“No, the mood’s dead now. They’re coming into town next Saturday because my mom's old friend is getting remarried and they’re going to be staying with me. And I really really really want you to meet them.” I looked at her and frowned.
“You, um, want me to meet them?”
“Yes, isn’t that what I just said?”
“Yeah…but…well, I don’t know about that, Riley.”
“You’re kidding me right?”
“No, it’s just that I’m not really a ‘meet the parents’ kind of guy. They just never like me. I don’t know why.”
“Honestly, Max? You don’t have to worry about that. I know my parents will adore you.”
“Yeah, well, don’t you want to introduce them to Geno or somebody?”
“No, why would I want to introduce them to Geno?”
“Because you’re ‘dating’ him?”
“Max, I’m not really dating him. And plus, I’m not going to lie to my parents. I want them to know what’s going on. I want them to meet the man who says he wants to be in my life for quite a while. Unless, you’re backing out of that offer?”
“No, that’s not what I’m saying at all.”
“Then you have absolutely no excuse to not want to meet them.”
“Riley, you can’t make me want to meet them.”
“Oh, I know, I’ll just take something very important away from you.”
“And, what might that be?”
“Sex. No sex until you agree to meet them.” She said it with a completely straight face, but I knew she had to be joking. That couldn’t be for real.
“Are you kidding me? We had sex one time and you’re already depriving me?”
“Just until you come around on this issue about my parents.” And with that, she flounced off downstairs. These next few days were going to be absolute hell until one of us caved.
Chapter Six - Tied Together
7 years ago