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

“I don’t want to look at you . . . go,” he says gruffly, but softer than before.

“I’m sorry for kissing him, Hardin. I know it hurts you, and for that I’m sorry.” I look up at him.

Silently he studies my face. I jump slightly when his thumb wipes away the tears staining my cheeks.

“Don’t be afraid,” he whispers.

“I’m not,” I say in an equally hushed tone.

“I don’t know if I can get past this.” He breathes heavily.

My knees nearly buckle at the thought. I don’t think there has ever been a time since we declared our love for each other that I’ve had to consider Hardin being the one to end things over an infidelity. My kiss with the stranger on New Year’s was nothing like this; he was pissed off and I knew he would let me have it, but deep down I knew he wouldn’t hold on to it for too long. This time, though, it was with Zed, whom he had had a rocky friendship with because of me; they’ve been in several fights, and I know it drives Hardin insane for me to even speak to Zed.

I don’t think getting back into a full-blown relationship with Hardin is a good idea at this moment, but our problems have shifted from uncertainty over the future to this. Unwanted tears spill from my unfaithful eyes, and his frown deepens.

“Don’t cry,” he coaxes, his fingers expanding and resting against my cheek.

“I’m sorry,” I breathe; a single tear falls onto my lips, and I lick it away. “Do you love me still?” I have to ask.

I know he does, but I’m desperate and needy for the words.

“Of course I do, I always will.” He comforts me in a soothing voice.

It’s a strangely beautiful sound, really: the way his exasperated breathing is heavy and loud but his voice is calm and soft, like an image of angry waves crashing against the shore with no sound.

“When will you know what you want to do?” I ask him, afraid of the answer.

He sighs and presses his forehead against mine as his breathing begins to slightly slow down. “I don’t know; it’s not like I can be without you.”

“I can’t either,” I whisper to him. “Be without you.”

“We can’t seem to get our shit together, can we?”

“No, not at all.” I almost smile at our calm exchange of words after his tantrum only minutes ago.

“We can try?” I offer, and I attempt to lean into him, nervously waiting for him to stop me.

“Come here.” His fingers press into the skin on my arms, and he brings me to his chest.

It feels heavenly, like visiting home after being away for so long, and the scent of him as I bury my face into his T-shirt calms my heart.

“You won’t go near him again,” he says into my hair.

“I know.” I agree without thinking.

“This doesn’t mean I’m over it, I just miss you.”