Never Say Forever

Tyler walked into the house just as Sam and Kimmi peeled away from each other. It wasn’t necessarily stealthy, though, as Tyler realized right away what was going on.
“Ty…” Sam said under a pant of breath.
“Uh oh…” Tyler teased. “Someone’s in trouble.” He giggled at the expressions on Kimmi and Sam’s faces. They looked like two kids who were just caught stealing from the cookie jar. Through Tyler’s giggles, however, came Sam’s glares and as instantly as they were caught, Sam got serious.  

“Ty…” Sam repeated, marching towards his best friend. “You can’t tell anybody!” He snapped. Feeling a little offended at Sam’s tone, Tyler shot his friend a confused look. Without having to even say a word, Sam answered his question. “You just can’t…okay?”
“Ruh-lax, Sammy-boy!” Tyler smiled, trying to lighten the mood. “It’s not like I caught you two doing the dirty on the kitchen counter or anything. The only thing I saw was two half-naked bodies rubbed up against each other and quickly moving apart as I walked in.” He laughed at the memory.
"You know very well that we weren’t simply just rubbed up against each other.” Sam said in his still-to-serious tone. “You can’t tell anybody.” He emphasized.
“Now, ya’ll hold on a second, here.” Kimmi chimed in, walking towards the boys.

It was only then that Tyler really realized that Kimmi was in nothing but her way too lacy underwear. He stared, uncontrollably, and his eyes started to get heavy at the sight of her. He swallowed hard.
“Ty…” Sam said, noticing his friend’s sudden tension. “Control yourself.”
“Why can’t anyone know about us?” Kimmi asked, ignoring Tyler’s stare.
“Yeah, Sam.” Tyler said, not taking his eyes off of Kimmi. “Enlighten us.”
“You can’t tell anybody because this is Kaleah’s cousin!” Sam hollered. “Kaleah’s cousin. As in the Kaleah that lives upstairs and her father just died!”
“Why should that affect her?” Kimmi asked, walking closer.

“Sam…are you…ashamed of me?” Kimmi asked bluntly. Sam noticed Tyler’s stare had moved from Kimmi’s naked stomach to her butt once she approached closer. Sam slapped Tyler’s shoulder.
“You’re staring at the girl that I, your best friend, just made out with. You realize this, don’t you?” Sam asked, in a wave of jealousy.
“Sam, answer my question!” Kimmi hollered.
“Of course I’m not ashamed of you, Kimmi! Why the hell would even begin to think that?” Sam hollered back.
“’Cause you’re standin’ here, snappin’ at your best friend to keep him from tellin’ anybody! That either means you have a girlfriend already or you’re ashamed of me.” Kimmi lowered her voice.
“There is no way in hell I would ever be ashamed of someone like you. Look at you, Kimmi! You’re god damn gorgeous. No man in his right mind would ever be ashamed to be with you.” Sam spoke softly, as if it was just him and Kimmi in the room. Kimmi blushed at his unexpected compliment, but quickly turned angry.
“So then that means you have a girlfriend.” She accused. Tyler grunted.

“What was that?” Kimmi asked Tyler.
“What was what?” Tyler asked, finally out of his trance he was in at the sight of half-naked Kimmi.
“That noise you done did. What was that?” Kimmi asked again.
“I was just….” Tyler swallowed hard, unsure of what to say.
“He was just putting his two cents in, like he usually does.” Sam accused, eye brows lowered into a sneer.
“What do you mean, puttin’ in his two cents? You’re hidin’ somethin’.” Kimmi accused.
“No, I’m not!” Sam snapped. Kimmi wasn’t listening to Sam anymore. Instead, she turned her complete attention to Tyler.

“Look, I don’t want to get involved anymore than I already am!” Tyler quickly said. “This is between you and Sam.”
“Not no more, it aint!” Kimmi exclaimed. “Does he or does he not already have a girlfriend?”
“He…does not.” Tyler choked on his words.
“Why do I get the feelin’ that you’re lyin’ to me?” Kimmi hollered.
“He’s not lying!” Sam interrupted. “I don’t have a girlfriend!” Kimmi raised her hand to shut Sam up.
“No offense, Sam, but I’m more interested in what Tyler here has to say.” She snapped.
“He doesn’t have a girlfriend.” Tyler said more confidently.
“But?” Kimmi asked, knowing that there should’ve been a but at the end of Tyler’s sentence.
“But nothing. He doesn’t have a girlfriend. This kid barely ever has a girlfriend.” Tyler teased.

 “Tyler, just tell me the truth. You seem like you’re hidin’ somethin’.” Kimmi spoke softly, as if she just wanted to get this conversation over with. Tyler looked over at Sam and Sam gave him a short nod to let him know to just tell her everything. Tyler sighed and turned his focus back on Kimmi.
“Look, Kimmi. I’m not lying to you about Sam not having a girlfriend. He doesn’t have one. He’s single.” Tyler took a breath to buy him a couple more seconds to think about what he was going to say next. “But, him and Kaleah have had this unspoken thing since she moved here. Well…I guess it’s not really unspoken…they have talked and argued about it multiple times before.” Tyler looked to Sam to help him out with the rest of the story.

“Ever since Kaleah moved in, she had me hooked.” Sam continued. Kimmi turned to face Sam. “But things and people and complications kept getting in the way of us being together and it just never happened. Since then, she’s dated other people. It’s not like I’m not allowed to be with anyone else and it’s not like we’re even remotely close to being together either.” Sam sighed.
“You’re upset by that.” Kimmi said. She felt a wave of jealousy overthrow her body.
“Of course I was upset about that! I mean, I don’t get with girls often and she is actually an amazing girl.” Sam recalled. “But she made it very clear to me that her and I are just friends. She even told me a week ago that I can’t get mad or jealous if she’s dating other guys. That just means that she’s not planning on being with me any time soon.”
“But you wish you guys were together. I can see it in your eyes.” Kimmi said in almost a whisper.

“If this were yesterday, yeah I would still be wishing we were together.” Sam said truthfully. He took a step towards Kimmi and took her hands. “But all of that changed the day you walked in my door.” He smiled sweetly. It took a couple seconds, but Kimmi mirrored Sam’s smile and took hold of his hands.
“So then why do you want to keep this a secret?” Kimmi asked, calmly.
“Because Kaleah has just lost her father. Does she really need the drama of thinking she lost her roommate/best friend to her hot, southern cousin who is supposed to be here to comfort her? You know Kaleah. She will just totally freak out and blow everything out of proportion.” Sam laughed.
“That’s so true.” Tyler joined in on the laughter.
“Guess you know my cousin more than I ever would think you would.” Kimmi also joined in on the laughter. 

“So then I agree with Sam.” Kimmi turned to Tyler. “You can’t tell Kaleah anythin’, ya hear?” Kimmi pointed her long, index finger in Tyler’s face.
“I hear!” Tyler said quickly, arms raised in a half-surrender.
“I’m going to go change before you start droolin’ all over me.” Kimmi teased.

“Kimmi…” Sam said. Kimmi paused and jerked her head to the side so she could see a little of Sam. “That rule applies to you to. Please don’t tell Kaleah. At least, not for right now.”
“No need to worry ‘bout me, sugar. The last thing I want right ‘bout now is to have drama caused between me and my cousin.” Kimmi winked at Sam before leaving the room and heading up the stairs. Once Kimmi was out of sight, Tyler took a deep breath and started to walk away.
“Ty, wait.” Sam stopped him before he could leave the kitchen.

“I’m sorry for snapping at you.” Sam apologized, approaching his friend. “I didn’t mean to sound harsh or anything. And I sure as hell never meant for you to be put on the spot like that with Kimmi.”
“It’s all good, man.” Tyler smiled. “But she sure is one scary southern chick.” Tyler giggled.
“Yeah, but she’s a hot scary southern chick.” Sam giggled too. Tyler's expression instantly turned from playful to serious.
“Look Sam…are you doing the right thing?” Tyler asked bluntly.
“What do you mean?” Sam asked, confused.
“I mean, I know you’re attracted to Kimmi and everything but how deep does that attraction run? This is Kaleah’s cousin. You know what that means, don’t you?”
“Of course I know what that means. They’re related by blood. Duh.” Sam laughed.
“Sam, seriously.” For once, Tyler wasn’t laughing.

“I know this might sound bad, but have you considered how deep you are in shit right now?” Tyler blurted.
“I don’t get it…” Sam asked, getting more serious. “How can I be in deep shit? I have a hot southern girl all over me and a best friend that I’m not fighting with for once. Not to mention, I have their other hot cousin living in my bedroom.” He nudged Tyler.
“Sam! Enough with the kidding around. You are dating Kaleah’s cousin. No matter what, this will end badly!” Tyler hollered.
“How will it end badly?” Sam started to get defensive. “You’re just jealous that I got a girl who you can’t stop drooling over!”
“Sam, don’t even begin to get all accusative like that! It’s totally not like that at all. Besides, I prefer Sloane over Kimmi anyways.” Tyler defended back. “Getting back on the subject, either way you swing this…it ends badly. You either tell Kaleah and have Kaleah all mad at you and what not for dating another girl, let alone her blood relative or you and Kimmi end up breaking up and Kaleah gets all mad at you for breaking her blood relative’s heart!” Sam paused to consider what Tyler was saying.
“I never thought of it like that.” Sam said slowly.
“I’m not trying to be Debbie Downer on you right now, but it is true. You have to consider what you’re doing.” 

“Okay, Ty. I get what you’re saying. But, Kaleah did say that she and I are just meant to be friends and that I can’t get jealous of any future lovers or boyfriends she decides to bring home.” Sam said.
“Yeah, she may have said that Samson, but get real!” Tyler hollered. “She is a woman! I’m not the stereotyping type of person, but really…when it comes down to it, all women are the same! She is going to get mad at you regardless, even though she believes its okay for her to date other people. I have two sisters…I grew up around crazy women so I think it’s safe to say that I know what I’m talking about.”
“Well I guess it’s just a risk I am willing to take, Ty. Kimmi is worth it…hell, she is more than worth it!” Sam said, ending the conversation.
“Alright, but don’t say that I didn’t warn you!” Tyler remarked.

The entire day seemed to go by way too quickly. Sam, Kimmi, and Tyler did their own things and barely spoke for what seemed like hours.
“What are you doing out here?” Sam asked when he left his room to find Kimmi standing just outside the door. He gave her a sweet smile and a soft kiss as he approached her.
“Waitin’ for your silly butt to get ready!” Kimmi teased. “You take longer than a woman to get dressed.”
“Come on, now. That’s hardly fair. I’m sure there are at least a couple women out there who take longer than me!” Sam teased. “So tell me, what do I owe the pleasure of having you standing outside my room waiting for me?”
“We need to talk, Sam. Seriously.” Kimmi’s sweet tone instantly went serious.
“Uh oh. That doesn’t sound good.” Sam complained.
“Don’t worry, it won’t be painful.” Kimmi giggled. “We need to figure out how we’re gunna sneak around Suh-loane. She is extremely intuitive and has a good nose for smellin’ gossip.”

“You think that Sloane would tell Kaleah if she ever found out about us?” Sam asked, worriedly.
“Not just yes, but hell yes!” Kimmi shook her head. “There is absolutely no way Suh-loane would ever keep a secret for me. That girl has always wanted to ruin me in any way she could possibly figure out how."
“Okay so Sloane knowing is a BAD idea.” Sam said.
“Most definitely.” Kimmi agreed.
“Well, it’s simple. I’m sure Sloane isn’t the type of person who will sit around the house all day so I doubt she’ll be around here very often. And when she is, we stay away from each other.” Sam reasoned.
“That would be a good idea…in theory. Don’t forget, Sam. We are all here to do the same thing and that’s to comfort Kaleah in any way she needs it. How are we supposed to stay away from each other if Kaleah needs all of us for support?” Kimmi said.
“Good point…” Sam bit his lip as he tried to think of another plan. 

The two of them stood in silence for what seemed like forever. Their minds were working like clockwork. They needed to figure out a plan and they needed to figure it out fast. The sun was almost setting and Kaleah and Sloane were bound to be home soon. Sam got frustrated.
“I REALLY wish that we didn’t have to hide and sneak around!” Sam hollered, breaking the silence. Kimmi wrapped her arm around Sam’s head and brought his body close to hers.
“Hey, now. Don’t get upset.” Kimmi said into his ear, sending a shiver down Sam’s spine. “It will all work out the way it’s supposed to. I believe in everythin’ happenin’ for a reason.”
“So do I.” Sam recalled.
“Good, then we’re a perfect match.” Kimmi giggled.
“Kaleah! I just really really want to show you this…uh…thing that I did!” Tyler was hollering from the top of the stairs. Kimmi and Sam heard footsteps—more than from one person—rushing down the stairs.
“Listen, Tyler. I’m really not in the mood to see something comepltely disgusting that you did with your penis!” Kaleah hollered back. Sam and Kimmi quickly pulled off of each other.

“Oh! So they are home!” Tyler said in the fakest surprised tone. Sam shot a glance at Tyler, who mouthed the words Sorry, I tried. Sam nodded slightly and then turned his attention to Kaleah.
“Hey, K!” He said. “How was work?”
“Maggie is the biggest bitch I’ve ever known! She knew something was wrong with me, and because I didn’t confide in her like I usually do, she got all huffy and punished me by making me clean the entire salon all day! Including the tattoo shop! Do you know how hard it is going to be to get this stupid ink off of my heels?” Kaleah walked instantly to Kimmi.

The second she got close enough, she wrapped her arms tightly around her cousin and brought her into a deep hug.
“How, now. What’s this for, darlin’?” Kimmi asked in surprise.
“While I was sweeping the salon floor, I did a lot of thinking. This is my way of saying thank you…for everything you’ve been doing for me. I realize that I was a little harsh earlier when we talked on the balcony. I should’ve gone out with you instead of ran away to work.” Kaleah responded.
“Don’t sweat it, Kaykay.” Kimmi smiled. “Are you feeling any better? You look like you are…”
“I’m feeling a little better, but it might just be the caffeine I’ve been ingesting all day.” Kaleah giggled. 

“But…you are feeling a little better?” Sam asked. Kaleah turned her attention to Sam. She slowly nodded her head.
“But definitely not feeling one hundred percent. I realized something today. My dad has gone to a much better place now that he’s passed on. I think I’m passed the shocked/angry part. It’s just time for me to mourn and get better.” Kaleah spoke softly. Kimmi rested a hand on her cousin’s shoulder.
“Aw, Kaykay. He really is in a better place.” Kimmi said.
“I know he is.” Kaleah smiled. “But I need to talk to you, Kimmi. In private.” Kaleah turned to head towards the staircase, expecting Kimmi to follow.
“I guess I’ll see ya’ll later then.” Kimmi said as she stepped away from the boys. She shot Sam an oh-no-I-think-she-knows look before quickly trailing behind Kaleah upstairs.
“Did you tell her anything?” Sam asked Tyler once the girls were out of sight.
“Nope.” Tyler responded.
“Does she seem like she knows something?” Sam asked.
“Now, you’re just paranoid.” Tyler laughed.

 Kimmi was really nervous being alone with Kaleah. She was never really good at lying and keeping secrets was never an easy task.
“Kaykay, why did you bring me up here?” Kimmi asked in hopes that she could leave.
“Just give me a second, I have to change!” Kaleah called from the closet. Kimmi sighed and wiped a bead of sweat forming on her hair line. She was very nervous.

Kimmi laid down on Kaleah’s bed as she waited for her cousin to get changed. She thought of all the different excuses she could use if she and Sam ever got caught. She thought about how she could make herself cry and plead at Kaleah’s feet to forgive her. She thought about how Kaleah would probably not care much for forgiving Kimmi and make her leave. Kimmi gulped.

“So you gunna tell me why we’re here while everyone else is down there?” Kimmi asked once Kaleah joined her on the bed.
“You’re religious, right Kimmi?” Kaleah asked.
“Yes. Well, to an extent. I was raised to be Christian but I don’t necessarily follow the religion much anymore. Why?”
“Is there really such thing as heaven?” Kaleah asked. Kimmi shrugged her shoulders.
“I dun’no, Kaykay.” Kimmi sighed. “It’s really somethin’ you either believe in or you don’t.”
“But if you were Christian, you would say that there is a heaven. Right?” Kaleah sounded like a little kid and Kimmi smiled at how cute she sounded. She understood what Kaleah was doing. She was trying to gain some hope that her father is somewhere better now.
“Yes. If you were Christian, you would say that there is a heaven. Many other religions believe in heaven as well, Kaykay. It’s not just Christians. Hell, some people who don’t even believe in a religion believe that there’s a heaven.” 

“My dad didn’t believe in any religion. He said that most religion’s force you to believe what a stupid book, which could’ve been written by a bunch of bored men for all we know, says and abide by the words on the pages. Do you think he still would’ve gone to heaven, even if he didn’t believe?” Kaleah asked, hopeful.
“I think so.” Kimmi nodded. “But I believe in heaven and I believe your daddy was an amazin’ man. He accomplished so much durin’ his stay on earth. Your daddy was a great father, a lovin’ husband, and a trustworthy friend. Even though he didn’t believe in religion, he had morals and stuck to those morals until the day he died. The God that I believe in would make your daddy one of His favourite angels because of how gosh darn amazin’ he is.” Kaleah’s eyes pooled with tears as she smiled at her cousin.
“You really believe that?” Kaleah asked. 
“Yes, I really do.” Kimmi smiled as tears began to fill her own eyes. She looked up at the ceiling. “You’re daddy isn’t far from here, ya know. He’s just up there, lookin’ down at you to make sure you’re doin’ alright. He will always look out for you, even though he can’t physically be here with you.” Kimmi turned her attention back to Kaleah. “You can talk to him, if you like. You won’t get a response, but you can pray to him. I learned in church a few years back that there is no shame in believin’ your guardian angel can hear you when you speak to him or her. You should try it. Maybe you’ll feel better.”
“You act like a total Christian.” Kaleah teased.
“Hey now!” Kimmi smiled. “There are some things ‘bout Christianity that I believe in my heart. There is other things ‘bout Christianity that I find so ridiculous. That’s why I don’t necessarily consider myself Christian.”

“What would heaven be like?” Kaleah asked. “In your point of view.”
“Well, sugar, what would it be like in your point of view?” Kimmi asked.
“I don’t know…I didn’t grow up following any type of religion so I really don’t have a clue about it.” Kaleah responded through sad eyes. She was just looking for some reassurance and reassurance was what Kimmi was going to give her.
“Heaven is like a whole magical world in the clouds.” Kimmi smiled. “Everyone wears white and they sparkle like gods and goddesses. Everyone is happy all the time and there’s no such thing as despair. Pain doesn’t exist and everyone lives in peace, whether they’re a different race or a different religion. The angels can come and go as they please and they’re constantly watchin’ over their loved ones from when they were alive. It’s a place where tranquility meets love and love conquers war.” Kimmi turned to look at Kaleah, who had slowly drifted off into a deep sleep. Kimmi smiled. Even though the description she gave her cousin was childish and unlikely, she knew that she eased the pain in Kaleah’s heart—even for just a little while.
“KIMMI! GET DOWN HERE RIGHT NOW!” Sloane’s voice tore through Kimmi’s moment like a thousand knives. Quickly, and careful not to stir Kaleah, Kimmi rushed out of the room to see what Sloane wanted.

Kimmi slowly walked into the front room where Sloane was propped up on the couch. Kimmi hadn’t even realized that the sun went down and, as she glared at the window behind her cousin at the starry sky, she suddenly felt very tired. How long had she been awake? It must’ve been more than 24 hours by now.
“How was shoppin’?” Kimmi asked gently, unsure why Sloane was glaring at her from across the room.
“Wonderful. But don’t try to change the subject.” Sloane said through an angry tone.
“Change the subject from what? I don’t even know why you called me down here…” Kimmi said, just as angrily. Sloane sighed.
“Is there something you would like to tell me?” Sloane asked.
“No, not really.” Kimmi responded.

Sloane stood up and walked closer to Kimmi, not letting her angry expression change.
“There isn’t something that you’re hiding that you would like to tell me?” Sloane asked again. Kimmi realized what she was talking about and her eyes grew wide.
“Who told you?” She snapped.
“It seems that Tyler is easily persuaded. I just got home and he was in the kitchen. I’m a very intuitive person, Kimmi, and I could sense that something wasn’t right with Tyler when I walked in. I asked him what he was hiding and, at first, he didn’t want to tell me. Turns out, all the boy needs is some attention from a hot girl like me in order to spill a secret.” Sloane smiled a very mischievous grin. “I told him that I would let him bring my bags down to Sam’s room and give him a kiss on the cheek if he told me what he was hiding. The boy didn’t even have to think twice before he gave you and Sam up!” Sloane laughed. Kimmi could feel her face getting hot with rage.
“How dare he!” She hollered.
“It doesn’t matter if he told me, Kimmi. The fact is, that you didn’t tell me!” Sloane hollered back.
“You weren’t even home when it happened! And besides, you don’t keep secrets very well. Why should I have told you?” Kimmi yelled.

“How can you do this to Kaleah?” Sloane hollered, ignoring Kimmi’s question. “I think it’s very obvious to anybody with a brain that she has a thing for Sam!”
“Really? ‘Cause from what I heard, nothin' is ever goin’ to happen between Sam and Kaleah!” Kimmi hollered back. “How could you even tell that, anyways? The two have barely spoken since we got here!”
“Do you not see the way Kaleah looks at Sam? Do you not see the way Sam defends and protects Kaleah? Even if they don’t know it, the two are crazy for each other!” Sloane’s expression was unattractively furious.
“No, I don’t see it, Suh-loane! I’m sure you’re imaginin’ it! Besides, me and Sam already had this conversation. I know that he and Kaleah used to sort of have a thing together but nothin’ ever happened, nor anythin’ will!” Kimmi responded. 

“I can’t believe you!” Sloane screamed. “It shouldn’t matter whether or not something will happen! This is your cousin. This is someone who you claim to care about. I may not give a crap about much, but I’m closer to Kaleah than you think and I will not stand by and watch you hurt her more than she already is!”
“So go on, then. Tell her.” Kimmi said, more calmly.
“No way. I am not telling her.” Sloane said.
“Why not?” Kimmi asked. “You know you love to stir up drama any chance you get. Why not tell her?”
“Because you are going to tell her!”
“No I am not! At least not right now!”
“So you’re okay with sneaking behind your cousin’s back after her father just died?” 

“What’s going on?” Tyler asked, approaching the fighting cousins.
“Kimmi, here, is going to continue to sneak behind Kaleah’s back!” Sloane hollered, turning her attention to Tyler.
“Only for her own good! I’m protectin’ her heart! I will tell her…just not right now!” Kimmi defended. “Besides, I don’t even see what the big deal is! We kissed! ONCE! There really isn’t much more goin’ on right ‘bout now.”
“I agree with Sloane.” Tyler said. “You should tell Kaleah.”

“Who the hell do you think you are?” Kimmi hollered at Tyler. Tyler took a defensive step back.
“Don’t get mad at me!” Tyler yelled.
“Don’t get mad at you? Are you crazy? You told somethin’ that me and your best friend politely asked you to keep a secret!” Kimmi yelled.
“Don’t frown, baby. You’ll get wrinkles.” Tyler said, trying to lighten the mood.
“Disgusting.” Sloane shook her head.
“You are an unusually annoyin' person, Tyler!” Kimmi hollered.
“Hey, no need to get mean!” Tyler hollered back. “You standing here getting mad at me because I told Sloane your stupid secret, which I shouldn’t have even known anyways! I don’t do good with confrontations.”
“You shouldn’t have known it, but the fact is, you do! And you promised you wouldn’t tell no body and you told Sloane the second she pretended to hit on you.” Kimmi accused.

“Hey, hey, hey. What’s going on here?” Sam interjected. Kimmi instantly approached Sam.
Tyler told Sloane!” She hollered.
“WHAT?!” Sam instantly grew furious. “YOU WHAT?!”
“Hey, you know how powerless I am before women! Sloane corrupted me!” Tyler defended.
“Only because I knew that there was something weird going on in this house!” Sloane hollered.
“And you have to stick your big ol’ nose in everyone else’s business!” Kimmi hollered back.
"I do not have a big nose!” Sloane covered her nose with her hand.
“I think your nose is cute.” Tyler flirted. Sloane rolled her eyes.

“This was such a bad idea, Sam! I had a feelin’ your stupid friend wasn’t trustworthy!” Kimmi snapped.
“Calm down, Kimmi! I know you’re upset, but just relax for a second.” Sam comforted Kimmi.
“I think we all need to calm down.” Tyler interjected. “Let’s just all get naked and take a bubble bath. We can smooth everything over in the suds.” Tyler laughed at himself. This set Sam off.
Tyler! Shut the hell up!” He screamed, approaching his friend.

“Dude, relax. I was just trying to lighten the mood!” Tyler said, apologetically.
“You screwed up, buddy! Big time!” Sam hollered. “You can’t just say some perverted remark and everything will go back to normal! Sloane thrives on drama! She’s going to let this get back to Kaleah as soon as she possibly can, and then what?”
“Hang on a second, here!” Sloane hollered. “Why the hell would you assume I thrive on drama?”
“You’re from LA.” Kimmi laughed. “LA girls are all ‘bout their drama and gossip.”
“That’s such a stereotype, Kimmi! Not all LA girls are like that!” Sloane stared at Kimmi through hateful eyes.
“Kaleah will understand!” Tyler hollered, ignoring the girls’ argument.
“No she won’t! Where do you even begin to think that? She hasn’t ever understood anything and now, in her fragile state of mind, this is going to be a lot worse than it should be! We were planning on telling Kaleah when she was feeling better about her dad! Now, she’s going to be doubly heartbroken!” Sam screamed.
“No offense, Sam, but I think you’re giving yourself more credit than you deserve!” Tyler screamed back. “Why would you think Kaleah would be so heartbroken? If I’m not mistaken, she broke up with you before you even dated her! She doesn’t want you, Sam! You both have been single for quite some time now and she doesn’t want you!” Sam stood and stared at his friend, jaw dropped, and speechless. Kimmi and Sloane joined Sam and stared at Tyler, unsure to make of his sudden outburst of words.

“You know…” Sloane turned to Sam, who was obviously hurt by what his friend said to him. “That could be true.” She held onto his arms, as if she was intervening.
“I still think it’s a bad idea for her to know. Right now, anyways. Even if she doesn’t want me…” Sam gulped at that thought. “…even if she doesn’t want me, she will still blow it out of proportion just because it’s her cousin.” Sam stared into Sloane’s eyes. Sloane saw him pleading silently for her to not say anything. She sighed and nodded.
“I get it.” She whispered. “I won’t tell her. You guys have to tell her when the time is right.”

Without another word, Tyler turned to leave.
“Hey, where are you going?” Sloane called after him.
“This place is full of drama, secrets, and lies. I don’t want any part of it.” Tyler called back over his shoulder. He slammed the front door behind him and quickly made his way home.

 “Sloane, you’re a liar by nature. That’s what you do. Are you sure you’re not gunna tell Kaleah? Or are you just lyin’ to us?” Kimmi asked softly.
“I’m not going to tell Kaleah, Kimmi. It really is your business. Besides, I agree with Sam. She can’t know right now. It will shatter Kaleah’s heart…” Sloane sighed. “…but not necessarily because she likes Sam or is protective of Kimmi.”
“Go on…” Sam said, curiously.
“Kaleah will probably twist everything around. If she found out that you and Kimmi are sleeping together or whatever it is you guys are doing, she will probably accuse you guys of not caring about the way she feels and are more interested in hooking up with each other than making sure she’s going to be okay.” Sloane explained.
“I doubt she would stoop that low.” Kimmi responded.
“Either way…” Sam said. “…we all have our own reasons as to why it’s a good idea that Kaleah doesn’t know about Kimmi and I. As long as we all agree on keeping it a secret, that’s fine by me, even if we agree or disagree with each other’s reasoning.”
“Okay.” Kimmi and Sloane said together.
“So no telling Kaleah.” Sam reassured.
“Right. But what ‘bout Tyler?” Kimmi asked. “He can’t handle the stress of keepin’ a secret.”
“I can work my magic with him.” Sloane smiled sweetly. “But I’m exhausted. I’m going to bed.” Sloane started to walk towards the basement.
“Hang on, let me get a couple things from my room first.” Sam said, stopping Sloane. He headed in front of her and descended the stairs, Kimmi quickly following behind.

When Kimmi and Sam went into Sam’s room, it was like it had been taken over by Barbie.
“Oh my goodness, Sam! Look at what Suh-loane did to your room. She crapped a mess right smack in the middle of it.” Kimmi laughed. Sam gasped at the overload of feminine things taking over his floor.
“Oh god…” He said through a breath. He looked around and saw jewelery lying in a heap near the end of his bed and…was that…makeup stains? “That tool! She stained my carpet with her makeup!”
“Calm down, darlin’. Remember why you’re doin’ this.” Kimmi giggled. She put her hand on Sam’s shoulder, and instantly he began to calm down.
“I could always get my carpet steam cleaned when she leaves.” He smiled, trying to fight away the rage he could feel building up inside of him.

“It’s kind of a shame, though…that you gave your room away to Suh-loane.” Kimmi said, turning to face Sam. She inched towards him with a seductive gaze. “It would’ve been nice to have a room to go to for some privacy, especially in a house full of secrets.”
“Yeah, I kind of wished that I let her take the couch instead of offering my room up.” Sam smiled.
“But…Suh-loane’s not here all the time.” Kimmi smiled back. “This room is vacant through most of the day.” Her body barely brushed against Sam’s body. He could feel his knees getting weak and his breath starting to shorten.
“She’s not here right now.” Sam managed to say in barely a whisper.

In an intense second, suddenly Sam and Kimmi found themselves pushed up against each other in a hard, passionate embrace. Their lips moved together as one as their hands moved widely amongst each others’ bodies. Sam slid his hand up Kimmi’s mini tank top and Kimmi started to unzip Sam’s hoodie. Sam lifted Kimmi and plopped her down onto the bed.

The two went at, determined to please each other more than they’ve ever wanted to before. Their kisses got harder—longer; more passionate…
“Gross.” Sloane complained, interrupting the moment. “And I have to sleep on that bed?” She made a disgusted grunting noise and fake shivered.

“Sloane.” Sam said, pulling away from Kimmi. “Didn’t think to knock first?” He couldn’t help but to laugh to hide his obvious embarrassment.
“Jeesh, talk ‘bout a mood kill.” Kimmi laughed too. Sloane rolled her eyes and crossed her arms.
“Excuse me for not realizing that I had to knock in, what I believed to be, as my unvacant bedroom.” Sloane complained.
“Suh-loane…unvacant is not a word. And if you meant to say empty, then the word is just vacant…without the un at the beginnin’.” Kimmi laughed.
“Whatever! You obviously knew what I meant!” Sloane argued. “God, why does every single day around here have to be a stupid English lesson?”
“Sorry, Sloane. But you do tend to mess up words quite often.” Sam giggled. “We’ll leave you alone.”
“Wait!” Sloane hollered as she stopped the two from getting up.

“Kimmi, I need to talk to your boyfriend….alone.” Sloane said. Kimmi blushed at the word boyfriend. Is that what she should consider Sam to be? I mean, they’ve only known each other for a couple days. She was sure that the term boyfriend would be totally inappropriate. She sighed as she lifted herself off of the bed and headed to the door.
“Ya’ll don’t have too much fun while I’m gone.” She winked at Sam before leaving the room, closing the door behind her.
“You stained my floor.” Sam said instantly. “Your makeup stained my carpet.” Sloane looked down at her makeup kit. She shrugged her shoulders.
“Oops.” She said, not seeming to care.
“Should I send the cleaning bill to your daddy when you leave?” Sam asked, feeling annoyed at Sloane’s obvious ignorance.
“I’ll get it cleaned before I leave, don’t worry your pretty blond head.” Sloane said sarcastically. She sat on the side of the bed Kimmi was on only moments before. She didn’t face Sam. She kept her back to him, thinking it would be easier to talk that way.

“So, what’s up?” Sam asked as an awkward silence threatened its way into the air between them.
“Kimmi’s not here right now, Sam.” Sloane said. “You can talk to me honestly.”
“Umm…” Sam was confused.
“What’s really going on between you and Kaleah? Are you hiding something?” Sloane asked, bluntly. Sam blinked, unsure of what to say.
“I thought I told you…there’s nothing going on between me and K.” Sam said, matter-of-factly.
“Why are you with Kimmi?” Sloane asked.
“She’s hot.” Sam laughed.
“That’s it? That’s the only reason why you’re with Kimmi?” Sloane asked, getting angry. Sure, she fought with Kimmi a lot but that doesn’t mean she wouldn’t stand up for her. When it came down to it, they were cousins. They were family, and they loved each other. Sam sat in silence, thinking of what Sloane had asked.
“It’s not the only reason.” Sam was finally able to say through a raspy tone.
“Then why else are you with Kimmi?” Sloane asked. “I can sense that there’s something going on here. I may be stupid with words, but I’m intuitive. It’s like I have a 5th sense.” Sam laughed.
Everyone has 5 senses, Sloane. You being intuitive would mean it was like having a 6th sense.”
“Whatever.” Sloane rolled her eyes. “Just tell me the truth.” 

Sam sighed.
“I like Kimmi. She’s mature, smart, and her accent is too cute. I think her and I would make a good pair.” Sam smiled.
“That was not convincing. There’s something else.” Sloane accused.
“That’s getting annoying.” Sam complained.
“Sorry. I have to know it all. Remember, I’m an LA girl and if I want to fit my stereotype, I have to sniff out all the gossip.” Sloane winked.
“Fine. You win.” Sam said, getting ready to explain. 

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