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

“Both of you?” she asks knowingly, and he rolls his eyes. As we hit the door, she yells over her shoulder, “Tessa, dear, if you want to leave him there, I won’t complain.”

I chuckle. “I’ll keep that in mind,” I say and follow him out.

WHEN HARDIN’S CAR STARTS, a very familiar piano melody fills the air. He hurries to turn the volume down, but it’s too late. I give him a smug look.

“They grew on me, okay?” he says.

“Sure,” I tease and turn the song back up.

If only things could go this way forever. If only this flirty getting along, this nervous middle ground that we are in, could last forever. But it won’t. It can’t. We have to actually discuss what has happened, and what will happen from here on out. I know we have so much to talk about, but we aren’t going to solve this problem all at once, even if I force the issue. I want to find the right time, and take it slow until then.

Most of the drive is spent in silence, the music saying all of the things I wish we could say to each other. When we near the Macy’s entrance, Hardin says, “I’ll drop you off by the door,” and I nod. I stand under the vent to warm up while he parks and hurries through the cold to me.

After nearly an hour of looking at baking dishes of all shapes and sizes, I decide to get Karen a set of cake pans. I know she probably has more than enough, but cooking and gardening seem to be her only hobbies, and I don’t have time to think of anything better.

“Can we take this to the car and then finish shopping?” I ask Hardin and struggle to keep the large box in my hands.

“Here, I’ll take it. Stay here,” he says and takes the box from me.

As soon as he walks away, I walk over to the men’s section, where hundreds of ties in large cases mockingly remind me of Landon’s claim about them as an easy gift. I keep browsing, but I’ve never bought a “dad gift” before, so I have no idea what to get.

“It’s so fucking cold out,” Hardin says when he returns, shivering and rubbing his hands together.

“Well, maybe wearing a T-shirt in the snow isn’t a good idea.”

He rolls his eyes. “I’m hungry, are you?”

We make our way to the food court, where Hardin finds me a seat while he gets us some pizza from the only decent chain there. Minutes later, he joins me at the table with two plates piled full. I grab a slice and a napkin and take a small bite.

“How elegant of you,” he teases when I wipe my mouth after I chew.

“Shut up,” I say and take another.

“This is . . . nice. Isn’t it?” he asks.

“What? The pizza?” I innocently ask back, even though I know he isn’t talking about the food.