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

“Us. Hanging out. It’s been a long time.”

It does seem like so long . . . “It hasn’t even been two weeks,” I remind him.

“That’s a long time . . . for us.”

“Yeah . . .” I take a bigger bite so I can keep silent a little longer.

“How long have you been thinking about moving forward?” he asks.

I slowly finish chewing and take a long drink of my water. “A few days, I guess.” I want to keep this conversation as light as I can in order to avoid causing a scene, but I do add, “There’s still so much to talk about.”

“I know there is, but I’m so . . .” His green eyes go wide as he focuses on something behind me. When I turn around, my stomach drops at the sight of red hair. Steph. And next to her, her boyfriend, Tristan.

“I want to go,” I tell him and stand up, leaving the tray of food on the table.

“Tessa, you haven’t gotten any other gifts. Besides, I don’t think they even saw us.”

When I turn back around, Steph’s eyes meets mine, and the surprise on her face is evident. I can’t tell if she’s more surprised to see me, or that I’m with Hardin. Probably both.

“Yeah, she did.”

The pair walk over to us, and I feel like my feet are bolted to the floor.

“Hey,” Tristan says uncomfortably when they reach us.

“Hey,” Hardin says and rubs the back of his neck.

I don’t say anything. I look at Steph, then grab my purse from the table and begin to walk away.

“Tessa, wait!” she calls after me. The thick heels of her shoes smack against the hard tile as she hurries to catch up with me. “Can we talk?”

“Talk about what, Steph?” I snap. “How my first and basically only friend here let me be humiliated in front of everyone?”

Hardin and Tristan look at each other, obviously unsure whether to intervene.

Steph throws out her hands. “I’m sorry, okay! I know I should have told you—I thought he would tell you!”

“So that’s supposed to make it okay, then?”

“No, I know it won’t, but I’m really sorry, Tessa. I know I should have told you.”

“But you didn’t.” I cross my arms.

“I miss you, I miss hanging out with you,” she says.

“I’m sure you do miss having me as the focus of all of your jokes.”

“It wasn’t like that, Tessa. You are . . . were my friend. I know I fucked up, but I really am sorry.”

Her apology catches me off guard. But I recover and say, “Well, I can’t forgive you.”

She frowns. And then her expression turns angry. “But you can forgive him? He’s the one who started it all—and you forgave him. How fucked up is that?”

I want to snap at her, cuss her out even, but I know she’s right. “I haven’t forgiven him, I’m just . . . I don’t know what I’m doing,” I whine and put my hands over my face.