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

“I don’t blame you,” I tell her and place the numbers on the top of the cake.

After arranging them to say thirty-one, I decide to have them say thirteen instead. Karen and I laugh at the corny candles and I struggle with the thick icing to write Hardin’s name below the candles.

“It looks . . . nice,” she lies.

I cringe at my terrible icing skills. “It’s the thought that counts. Or at least it better be . . .”

“He’ll love it,” Karen assures me before heading upstairs so Hardin and I can have some privacy when he gets here.

It’s now been an hour since he texted, and I’m sitting in the kitchen alone waiting for him to show. I want to call him, but if he isn’t coming he should be the one to call me and tell me.

He’ll come. It was his idea to come, anyway. He will come.

 

chapter one hundred and six

HARDIN

For a third time, Nate tries to hand me his cup. “C’mon, man. Just one drink, it’s your twenty-first birthday, dude—it’s illegal not to!”

Because it will get me out of here smoother, I finally relent. “Fine, one drink. But that’s it.”

Smiling, he pulls his cup back and grabs the bottle of liquor out of Tristan’s hand. “Okay, then. At least have a proper one,” he says.

I roll my eyes before taking a swig of the dark liquid. “All right, that’s all. Now you can leave me alone,” I tell him, and he nods in agreement.

I head to the kitchen to get another cup of water, and Zed, of all fucking people, stops me. “Here,” he says, handing me my phone. “You left it on the couch when you got up.”

Then he wanders back into the living room.

 

chapter one hundred and seven

TESSA

After two hours, I leave the cake on the counter and head upstairs to take my makeup off and change back into my pajamas. This is what happens every single time I let myself give him another chance. Reality smacks me in the face.

I really thought he was coming; I’m so foolish. I was downstairs baking him a cake . . . God, I’m an idiot.

I grab my headphones before I allow myself to cry again. The music pours into my ears as I lie back on the bed and do my best to not be too hard on myself. He acted so different last night—mostly in a good way, but I do miss his perverted and rude remarks that I always pretend to hate but secretly love.

I’m glad Landon didn’t come to say hello when I heard him get home. I was still holding a little hope and I would have looked even more ridiculous, not that he’d ever tell me that, of course.

I reach over and turn off the light on the nightstand, then turn down the music slightly. If this were a month ago, I would jump into my car and drive to that stupid house and ask him why the hell he stood me up, but it’s now, and now I just don’t have it in me to fight him. Not anymore.