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

I drowsily get to my feet and wobble down the hall. When I reach the living room, Noah is sitting on the couch. Not the entire Porter clan, as my mother had threatened, but this does wake me up.

“Look who stopped by while you were napping!” my mother says, smiling her fakest smile.

“Hey,” I reply, but am really thinking, I knew I shouldn’t have come here.

Noah waves a slight hand at me. “Hey, Tessa, you look great.”

Of course, I have no problem with Noah at all—I care for him deeply, like a family member. But I need a break from everything going on in my life, and him being here only adds to my guilt and pain. I know it isn’t his fault and it’s not fair for me to be short with him, especially when he’s been so kind throughout our whole breakup.

My mother leaves the room, and I pull my shoes off and sit down on the couch, opposite Noah. “How’s your break going?” he asks.

“Good, yours?”

“Same. Your mom said you went to Seattle?”

“Yeah, it was great. I went with my boss and some coworkers.”

He nods excitedly. “That’s awesome, Tessa. I’m happy for you—you’re really doing the publishing thing!”

“Thank you.” I smile. This isn’t as awkward as I thought it would be.

After a moment, he looks down the hall where my mother disappeared, then leans in close. “Hey, so, your mom has been so tense since Saturday. I mean more than usual. How are you doing with all of this?”

I scrunch up my brows. “What do you mean?”

“The whole thing with your dad?” he says slowly like I know what he’s talking about.

What? “My dad?”

“She didn’t tell you?” He looks down the empty hall. “Oh . . . Don’t tell her I told—”

Before he can finish, I’m on my feet and storming down the hallway to her room. “Mother!”

What the hell about my dad? I haven’t seen or heard from him in eight years. The way Noah was acting kind of solemn . . . Did he die? I don’t know how I’d feel about that.

“What about Dad?” I raise my voice as I burst into her room. Her eyes go wide but she composes herself quickly. “Well?” I shout.

She rolls her eyes. “Tessa, you need to lower your voice. It is nothing, nothing that you need to worry about.”

“That’s not for you to decide—tell me what’s going on! Is he dead?”

“Dead? Oh no. I would tell you if he was,” she says and drops a hand as if to pooh-pooh me.

“Then what is it?”

She sighs and looks at me for a second. “He’s moved back. Not too far from where you are now, but he won’t be contacting you, so don’t you worry about it. I took care of it.”

“What does that even mean?” I don’t have enough space in my head for all of this crap with Hardin, and now my absentee father is moving back to Washington. Now that I think about it, I didn’t know he moved away in the first place. I only knew he wasn’t around me.