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

She was missing that fire that Tess has—she didn’t scold me for my foul language, she didn’t even say anything when I put my hand on her thigh in the middle of dinner. I knew she only agreed to go out with me to fulfill some fucked-up bad-boy fantasy before church the next morning, but that’s okay, because I was using her, too. I was using her to fill the void of Tessa. To distract me from Tessa being in Seattle still with fucking Trevor. The guilt I felt when I moved in to kiss her was overwhelming. I pulled away, and the embarrassment was clear on her innocent face—I practically ran to my car, leaving her stranded at the restaurant.

I sit up further and look at the sleeping girl that I am desperately in love with. Seeing her in our apartment with her clothes in the washer, the apartment clean, and even her toothbrush in the bathroom . . . it gave me a little bit of hope. But then again, you know what they say about hope.

I’m still holding on to the sliver that exists, the small chance that she may forgive me. If she woke up now, she would surely scream at the sight of me standing over her as she sleeps.

I know I need to take it down a few notches. I need to give her a little space. This behavior and these feelings are so exhausting, so overwhelming to me, and I have no fucking idea how to deal with them. But I will figure this out—I have to fix all of this. I push a loose strand of her soft hair from her face and force myself away from the bed, back to my pile of blankets, on the concrete floor, where I belong.

Maybe I’ll be able to sleep tonight.


chapter twenty-seven


When I wake up, I’m momentarily confused by the brick ceiling above me. It’s strange to wake up here after staying in hotels for the past week. When I climb out of bed, the floor is clear, with the blanket and pillows piled next to the closet. Grabbing my toiletry bag, I head to the bathroom.

I hear Hardin’s voice from the living room: “She can’t stay today, Mum. Her mother is expecting her.”

“Couldn’t we have her mom come here? I would love to meet her,” Trish responds.

Oh no.

“No, her mother is . . . not very fond of me,” he says.

“Why not?”

“She doesn’t think I’m good enough for Tessa, I guess. And maybe because of how I look.”

“How you look? Hardin, don’t you ever let anyone make you feel insecure. I thought you loved your . . . style?”

“I do. I mean, I don’t give a shit what anyone thinks. Except Tessa.”

As my mouth falls open, Trish laughs. “Who are you, and where is my boy?” Then, with real happiness in her voice, she says, “I can’t even remember the last conversation we had where you didn’t curse me out, it’s been years. This is nice.”