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

“Hardin . . .” Tessa’s voice is behind me. Dammit.

To my surprise Karen jumps to my defense. “Ken, you leave the boy alone. He’s doing his best.”

My father’s eyes immediately soften as he turns to his wife. Then he looks back at me. “I’m sorry, Hardin, I just worry about you.” He sighs, and Karen rubs her hand up and down his back.

“It’s fine,” I say and look at Tessa standing in her jeans and WCU sweatshirt. She looks so innocently beautiful with her damp hair hanging around her makeup-free face. If Tessa hadn’t appeared in the kitchen, I’d have told him how big of an asshole he is and how he needs to learn to mind his own goddamn business.

I grab a paper towel and wipe it over the counter to clean up the pool of coffee on their expensive-ass granite countertop.

“Are you ready?” Landon asks Tessa, and she nods, still staring at me.

I really want to take her, but I should go home and sleep or shower, lie on the bed and stare at the ceiling, clean the place . . . hell, anything but sit here and chat with my father.

Her eyes finally leave mine, and she leaves the room. When I hear the front door close, I let out a deep breath.

As soon as I walk away from my father and Karen, I hear them start talking about me, of course.

 

chapter ninety-eight

TESSA

I know what I should have done: I should have told Hardin to go away, but I couldn’t. He rarely shows emotion, and the way he was on his knees in front of me broke the pieces of my already-shattered heart into smaller bits. I told him that I’ll think about it, about giving us another try, but I don’t know how this is going to work.

I’m so conflicted right now, more confused than ever, and annoyed with myself for almost giving in to him wholesale. But on the other hand, I’m proud of myself for stopping things before they went too far. I need to think of myself here, not only him—for once.

As Landon drives, my phone buzzes in my lap and I check the screen.

It’s Zed. Are you okay?

I take a deep breath before responding. Yeah, I’m fine. I’m on my way to campus with Landon. I’m sorry about last night, it was my fault that he came there.

Hitting send, I turn my attention back to Landon. “What do you think will happen now?” he asks.

“I have no clue. I’m still talking to Christian about Seattle,” I say.

Zed writes back: No it’s not. It’s his fault. I’m glad you’re okay. Are we still on for lunch today?

I had forgotten about our plans to meet in the environmental studies building for lunch. He wanted to show me some sort of flower that glows in the dark that he helped to create.

I want to keep my plans with him—he’s been so kind to me through everything—but now that I kissed Hardin this morning, I don’t know what to do. I was just sleeping at Zed’s last night, then there I am kissing Hardin this morning. What’s happening to me? I don’t want to be that girl; I still feel some guilt over what happened with Hardin while I was still with Noah. In my defense, Hardin came in like a wrecking ball—I had no choice but to gravitate to him as he slowly destroyed me, then built me back up, then destroyed me again.