Kevin didn’t know what he had just witnessed. Well, it wasn’t that he didn’t know, it was more like he didn’t want to believe what he had just witnessed. He had always trusted his younger brother to do the right thing and make the right choices. Sure, there had always been rumors, but it never crossed his mind that there would be truth to them. It never occurred to him that his brother was blatantly disregarding a pledge he had taken; a promise he had made.
Now, Kevin wasn’t sure if he could ever respect his brother again. He didn’t know what would’ve possessed him to do something like that. And what was worse was the fact that he hadn’t been with—
“STELLA!” Macy protested from downstairs, trying to pull free from her best friend’s grip. She didn’t understand why it was such a big deal that she was wearing Joe’s clothes. Okay, so she did understand what a big deal that was, but she couldn’t understand why Stella was making such a big deal out of it. Sure, he was her boyfriend and all, but it wasn’t like Macy hadn’t stolen clothes from the Lucas brothers before.
“Stop struggling, Macy,” Stella growled, “you’re the one who decided you were going to—” Macy growled in frustration, trying to tug her wrist free from Stella’s—pretty much—iron grasp. She was certain now that she was going to have a nice bruise in the shape of Stella’s fingers. Not to mention a hickey in the shape of Joe’s lips. Not that it’d actually look like Joe’s lips, but there would be a hickey. She could feel it forming now.
“Let me go!” Macy shrieked, pulling even harder. Stella pulled her father into the firehouse, her grip not even budging an inch. She wondered when Stella had gotten so strong. It wasn’t like Macy was weak, she was an athlete, for crying out loud. But, Stella did have to put up with three rowdy boys. The same boys that were descending the stairs right now.
“What’s going on down here?” Nick asked, jumping over the last few steps to stare at where Macy and Stella stood in the living room. Macy continued to struggle. If his brothers realized what she was wearing it was going to be obvious. She was surprised it wasn’t obvious to Stella. Maybe she was in denial.
“Macy here decided it would be—”Macy continued to struggle, debating on biting Stella’s arm to see if she’d finally let her go—”a good idea to—”Stella grunted, almost losing her grip—”Macy! Quit struggling!”
“Are those Joe’s clothes?” Nick asked, raising a questioning eyebrow at Macy before turning around to look at his older brother. Joe avoided his gaze, trying to focus on Macy and Stella in the center of the living room.
“Joe?” Kevin asked, moving farther into the room when he noticed how awkward things were getting for his younger brother. Joe tore his gaze from Macy slowly, turning to look at the oldest of the three brothers.
“Yeah, Kev?” Joe asked, swallowing when he noticed there was some kind of broken sadness in his oldest brother’s eyes. He wondered what had hurt him bad enough to make it overshadow the soft smile he had on his face.
“I think Macy is wearing your clothes,” he said, in a matter-of-fact tone. He motioned towards the girl who had now stopped struggling and was looking at the scene that was unfolding. Joe turned back to her slowly, he didn’t know how to answer that. He knew those were his clothes. He was the one who had given them to her. But, he didn’t think she’d get caught in them by Stella.
“I’m sorry I took them,” Macy said, meeting Joe’s eyes and trying to get him to play along, “I guess I haven’t outgrown my obsessive phase just yet.”
Joe sighed and chewed on his lip. He looked like the cat that ate the canary. If he would just play along they would be home free, but with him looking so guilty…
“It’s okay, Mace,” Joe said, “I didn’t really like those clothes anyway.” He shot her a smile and she swallowed.
“Joe,” Nick said, “that’s your favorite shirt…” he motioned to the shirt Macy was wearing and everyone in the room looked over at her.
“No, Nick,” Joe said, voice cracking a bit with nerves, “I changed my mind. That one isn’t my favorite anymore.”
Macy swallowed again. She was wearing Joe’s favorite shirt? Why did that make her more excited than it probably should’ve? What was so exciting about the idea of Joe letting her wear something he cherished? It was Joe and not Kevin.
She glanced up, looking around the room and trying to locate the Lucas brother that she was dating. She found him still lingering by the stairs and looking at her with sad eyes. She wondered what made him so sad, but now was certainly not the time to ask. She tilted her head to the side, watching as he crossed his arms awkwardly.
“But that’s been your favorite shirt for forever,” Nick argued, “you can’t change your mind that quickly. I know you, Joe.” Joe just shrugged.
“It wasn’t a quick change. It’s been going on for awhile.”
Macy turned her attention back to the conversation. Something had changed in the conversation. It was like they weren’t even talking about the shirt anymore. It was like they were talking about something completely different.
“How long is awhile?” Nick asked, “how long has this…shirt not been your favorite one?” Joe spared a glance at Macy and then one at Stella.
“Not long,” he said, “but I guess I spent most of my life really liking that shirt, but once I found a new one, a different one, a better one…I realized that I didn’t like that shirt as much as I thought I did. I realized that there was another shirt. One that fit me better.” He looked at her for a split second when he said that, a soft smile appearing on his face.
Nick looked over at her too, a frown forming on his usually expressionless lips.
“But what about your favorite pants?” Nick continued, looking back at his brother, “your new favorite shirt doesn’t match your pants. They go with another pair of pants.”
Macy looked over at Stella for help, but she was looking quite confused herself.
“Wait…” Stella said, “how do you know his new favorite shirt doesn’t match his favorite pants? You haven’t even seen it…” Nick and Joe ignored her.
“My favorite pants should be able to understand. They should understand that I really love this new shirt, and I really need this new shirt.”
“Your favorite pants don’t understand,” Kevin butted in, moving farther into the room and jumping into the conversation.
Both brothers looked at him in shock.
“Your favorite pants think you should stay with your old favorite shirt. They match better. It’s not about how they fit you, but how they match your pants. Besides, your new favorite shirt is my shirt and I’m not giving it to you.”
“What’s going on?” Macy asked, walking closer to the boys.
The three of them stared at her and then at Stella who looked equally as confused as Macy did.
“How did Joe come to like a shirt that’s Kevin’s?” Stella asked, “You two aren’t even the same size. Everything I make for you is a custom fit.”
“That’s a good question, Stella,” Kevin said, “one I’m sure Joe would like to answer.”
Joe looked terrified and at that moment it all fell into place for Macy.
They weren’t talking about clothes at all. They were talking about her and Stella. She was Kevin’s shirt, the one Joe loved, but…oh wow. This was confusing, even when you knew which shirt was which.
“Joe?” Stella asked. Joe swallowed.
“Stella…” Joe said, “You know I love you…” he trailed off, and in that second, everything fell into place for Stella as well.
“Are you…breaking up with me?” She asked, her voice strained. Joe looked down at his shoes, chewing on his bottom lip.
“I don’t know how else to do this,” Joe said, “I have feelings for someone else…and it isn’t fair to you.”
“Who is she?” Stella asked, tears rolling down her cheeks, “how long have you—”
“Stella,” Macy said softly, cutting her best friend off. Stella stopped talking and turned to look at where her best friend was standing, tears forming in her eyes too. Macy sighed, looking away from Stella and at Joe and then at Kevin.
“Macy?” Stella whispered, turning back to Joe, “it’s Macy?” Joe swallowed and nodded. Kevin took a deep breath in through his nose.
“I knew it,” Nick muttered before continuing, louder, “ever since that night when I came home and you two were upstairs watching TV and cuddling in one of the chairs. You told me you were waiting for Kevin and Stella, but…” Nick stopped there, shaking his head in disappointment.
“How long has this been going on?” Stella asked, more tears falling.
“About a month,” Macy responded, “it’s still really new.” Stella shook her head, a sob escaping her lips.
“Why?” She asked, “was I not enough for you, Joe? Why Macy? Why cheat on me with my best friend?” Joe shook his head.
“I don’t know,” he responded. It was a lie. He liked the way Macy responded to his advances. She gave him what he wanted, whereas Stella held out. She stopped him too soon. Macy never said no. It was lust. Or it was at first, but now he had real feelings for her. He wanted to be able to give her a choice, he wanted her to be able to tell him no. It was strange how it all happened. Maybe he was meant to be with Macy after all.
“I didn’t tell him no,” Macy responded, “it was purely a physical relationship.” Kevin and Stella looked over at her, eyes questioning. Macy continued, “I could give him things you wouldn’t,” she said, looking directly at Stella, “and he gave me the things I craved from you,” she said, changing her gaze and looking directly at Kevin. “I’m sorry you two had to get hurt like this.”
“No,” Joe said, “It may have started out as physical,” he looked at Macy, brown eyes locking with hers, “but I really fell for you.” Macy laughed and shook her head.
“Joe,” Macy said, “I get it. Stella is the girl of your dreams, I’m just the girl you wanted to use and throw away.”
Joe wanted to scream. He wanted to tell her she was wrong, but he didn’t know how. She had everything set in her mind as how it was supposed to be. He wasn’t going to be able to change that.
“Macy,” Joe said, “please…” It was all he could think of to say. He wanted her to believe him, but…
“It’s okay, Joe,” Macy said, looking at Kevin, “I guess this is good-bye, I’m sorry I hurt you.”
Kevin didn’t say anything, he couldn’t think of anything to say.
“I’ll send the clothes back after I wash them,” she said, smiling and turning around to leave. No one stopped her; the room remained in a stunned silence as she slipped through the front door and out of their lives.
Okay, don’t hate me for the ending. There’s an epilogue coming. I’m sorry this chapter sucked. I worked on it for a really long time. So I wish it could’ve been better, but this was the idea that came out. But seriously, it’s not the end. I’ll answer the questions about the whole “what about school” and stuff. I swear. Just hang in there and please don’t hate me.