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After We Collided (After, #2) by Anna Todd Read Online (FREE)

“I really like what you guys have done to the place, Hardin,” my father says.

“It came decorated mostly, but thanks,” I reply. I have come to the conclusion that it’s less awkward when I’m punching him than when we’re trying to avoid an argument.

Karen smiles at me. “It was really nice of you to invite us over.”

My life would be easier if she was a hideous bitch, but of course she’s one of the nicest people I have ever met. “It’s nothing, really . . . after what happened yesterday, it’s the least I can do.” I know my voice sounds shakier and more strained than I want it to.

“It’s okay . . . things happen,” Karen assures me.

“Not really; I don’t think that violence is a regular holiday tradition,” I say.

“Maybe it will be from now on—Tessa can punch me out next year,” Landon jokes in a lame attempt to lighten the mood.

“Maybe I will.” Tessa sticks her tongue out at him, and I smile slightly.

“It won’t happen again,” I say and look at my dad.

My dad looks at me thoughtfully. “It was partly my fault, son. I should have known it wasn’t going to go well, but I hope now that you let some of the anger out, we can get back to trying to develop a relationship,” he says to me.

Tessa puts her small hands over mine to comfort me, and I nod. “Uh, yeah . . . cool,” I say timidly. “Yeah . . .” I chew on the inside of my cheek.

Landon slaps his hands on his knees and stands. “Well, we should get going, but let me know if you really want to go to the game. Thank you both for having us over today.”

Tessa hugs the three of them as I lean against the wall. I was nice enough today, but there’s no way that I’m hugging anyone. Except Tessa, of course, but after my politeness today she should be giving me more than a hug. I stare at the way her loose dress hides her beautiful curves and literally have to talk myself down before I drag her to the bedroom. I remember the first time I saw her in that hideous dress. Well, back then it was hideous to me; now I sort of adore it. She came out of the dorm looking like she was getting ready to sell Bibles door-to-door. She rolled her eyes at me when I teased her as she climbed into my car, but I had no idea that she would make me fall in love with her.

I wave once more as our company leaves and let out a deep breath that I hadn’t realized I was holding. A hockey game with Landon—what the fuck have I gotten myself into?

“That was so nice. You were so nice.” Tessa praises me and immediately kicks off her high heels before lining them neatly by the door.

I shrug. “It was okay, I guess.”

“It was better than okay.” Tessa beams at me.