Chapter 2

Vincent broke Alice’s heart in more ways than one. He became distant and started giving her a cold shoulder and pushing her away. He promised to be with her, and he told her once she was the only girl for him as he was going to be the only boy for her, but he broke his promise.

All the progress Alice thought she had made with him was useless. The time they spent together in the past year was all for nothing. The girls started showing up at the house and left crying the next day the same way she cried daily whenever he brought a girl home. She blamed her age. Maybe when she gets to eighteen in a few months? Vincent would see her as the mature girl who can be girlfriend material.

Alice still chose him and ran after him. Vincent was still the same boy who used to give her piggyback rides and chased her on the playgrounds. He is the same boy who used to come running to the cottage whenever he got a chocolate bar so they could share, regardless of the time. He was the same boy she has spent the last year hanging out with and sharing her plans with.

Alice was sitting in her room, her mind filled with the only boy who was breaking her heart whenever he refused to look at her or talk to her. She wiped the fresh tears as she reminisced about a time when she was eight and Vincent had gone to a family dinner and he found out he was having a sister and he could not wait the next day to tell her the great news.

He ran, shouting Alice’s name in the dark like a maniac. Alice heard him call her excitedly, half asleep that she had jerked up and rushed down to meet him. Alice wished she could get the old Vincent back. He was fun and nice.

Alice scowled and dropped her head on the bed, wanting to scream. She was trying to promise herself not to think of Vincent, but the more she tried to stop, the more she thought of him. She wanted to hate him, but she couldn’t. Alice blamed her weak and stupid heart.

She got up and sighed, staring at the wall. She was believing her best friend’s words. Megan had told her she might have been cursed to always crush on Vincent. She wasn’t a believer in such nonsense, but the more she thought of Vincent, the more she was slowly thinking he was her curse.

Alice got up and walked to the mirror and gazed at her reflection. She squinted her eyes, trying to find a flaw. She believed she was developed, but she still looked and wondered what made her not drool worthy in Vincent's eyes.

“I’m pretty,” she nodded but her voice was not convincing even to her ears, “I’m pretty,” she repeated, flipping her black hair to the side and tried to make a sexy look and ended up with a scowl on her face, “No Vincent.” she waved her index finger, “You are the foolish one for making me doubt my worth. I’m a total babe and pretty.” She huffed and walked off and dropped on the bed.

Alice might have convinced herself in the mirror, but the validation she wanted was from Vincent. He used to tell her how pretty she was. He used to tell her a lot of nice things. Alice wished they would be young again and have Vincent all to herself.

She grabbed a pillow and tugged it to her face and screamed. She wanted to scratch all the faces of the girls Vincent was hanging out with. Alice sat and crossed her legs, feeling angry, and hugged the pillow once more and screamed again. She felt a little better and wiped her face.

“Alice, you have a visitor!” Riley shouted.


Alice jumped out of bed and went to the mirror and ran her fingers through her hair. She dabbed her eyes a little and fixed her face before going downstairs.

“Hey Katy, what are you doing here?” Alice smiled. “Does your dad know you are here?” Alice looked from Vincent’s sister to her brother Riley.

“Don’t look at me,” Riley shrugged, and he walked past Alice to his room upstairs.

“Hey, Ally,” Katy beamed, making Alice frown more. Katy was a little scoundrel sometimes. “That’s why I’m here. I need a tutor, and you came to mind.”

Alice laughed, looking at her suspiciously. “Katy, you are homeschooled with private tutors. You don’t need me. I only help you because I want to.”

The last statement was partly true. Alice enjoyed tutoring Katy, but also had another reason. Deep down, Alice would get her fingers crossed, hoping to see Vincent whenever she was helping Katy with her schoolwork.

“Fine, it's not just tutoring. Dad is going to come and ask you to babysit me, so can you please say yes?” she grinned.

“Katy?” Alice looked at her quizzically. “What did you do?”

“Nothing,” Katy quickly answered.

"I don't believe you," Alice eyes her with a scrunched face.

“I don’t want hired help. They don’t play with me and daddy wants your mom to rest tonight,” she smarted.

"That's not the whole truth, Kat," Alice stared at her, waiting.

"I told my dad that you can help me with my crafts better than my tutor, Ally." Katy whined. "Please help me. My craft will be done faster with you around."

Katy is used to getting whatever she wants. After their mother passed away in a freak car accident four years ago when Katy was five, things were hard for them. Peter De Villiers has been the best father to both Vincent and Katy throughout and he cares for his family.

They are homeschooled, something Alice never understood, but Peter has always been overprotective of his family and Katy hardly goes out, and maybe part of it caused Vincent to push her away.

“Can’t your brother do it?”

“I asked, and he said he was busy.” she looked down. “Please say yes.” Katy asked as she grabbed Alice's hand.

What would Vincent be busy with that he couldn’t look after her sister for one freaking night? Sometimes Alice wonders why she bothers with him. He is moody and always angry unless he is talking to her mom and Katy. He never utters a word to her anymore and goes the other way all the time to avoid Alice as if she was a plague.

Alice really wanted to ask him what changed, but her pride wouldn’t allow her. Deep down she cared, but she promised her best friend and confidant Megan she would repay his response the same. If he avoids her, she was going to avoid him too if not more and Katy asking to be babysat was ruining her progress. 

“Will you, will you please, Ally?” Katy pleaded, taking Alice away from her reverie, making a cute-puppy-doe-eyed face. It never failed because it took Alice less than a minute to cave.

“Fine, but only if you help me look for a pretty prom dress online after we finish your craft,” Katy smiled, her eyes shining with excitement that she bounced around.

Alice nervously chuckled at her predicament because she was going to be in the main house with a high chance of meeting Vincent. She had been doing well so far and finally took her mother's advice and stopped trying to catch Vincent after his jog weeks ago. She was glad that they would do something time-consuming after helping Katy with her schoolwork.

The more time they spend engrossed on online clothing sites, the better. That way she would not wander around the house and bump into you know who. It was a solid plan. Alice was satisfied with the outcome. Vincent be damned. 

“I knew you would say yes,” Katy bounced some more, “Will go tell dad,” she ran out but not before she stopped by the door and looked back, “Will you do my nails and braid my hair too,” she made puppy eyes at Alice again.

"I will bring my kit over." Alice smiled because she had enough to do with Katy and will hardly have time to even think of Vincent.

"This is going to be so fun!" Katy squealed and skipped her way back to the main house.

Alice walked back inside after Katy disappeared and went upstairs, knocking on Riley’s room. “Hey, I’m going to babysit Katy tonight. Can you help me with dinner tonight?”

“You should wait for a response before barging in. You could see things,” he responded, annoyed.

“Ew, don't be gross.” Alice scrunched her face and rolled her eyes.

"Then don't barge in." Riley paused his game on his computer screen and shifted his chair to look at Alice.

"Can you help me with dinner or not?" Alice crossed her arms.

“No, I cooked last night and the previous night. It’s your turn to cook.” he replied, drumming his fingers on his desk. “You just want to go drool over Vincent,” he scoffed.

“Shut up. I'm babysitting. Will you help me or not?” she sighed.

“No,” he smirked before looking back at his computer screen, ignoring Alice.

“I will clean only your room, not the bathroom, and your underwear must be out of sight.” Alice wagered.

“You clean my room for a week and help me with a project and we have a deal.” Riley looked back at her before grabbing a notepad and handing it to Alice.

“This says Marcia,” Alice looked at him.

“I know she is my new project,” he smiled coyly.

“You might be older than me, but you are still an idiot,” she shook my head, throwing the notepad on the bed.

“Then you better hurry and cook before you go see Mr dreamy pants.” he shooed her away.

“How did you know about that?” she demanded, mortified.

“You and Megan are way too loud on the phone.”

“Yeah, well, the same goes for you,” she crossed her arms. "I know about the drag race. I can tell mom about it."

“GET OUT!” He got up and pushed Alice out of his room. “Good luck with dinner,” he banged the door on her face.

“Wait, I’m sorry,” Alice banged the door, “I know a better way to get your project. I mean Marcia.” Alice sucked her teeth and waited.

Riley opened the door slowly and peeped, “Apologize first.”

"You can be such a toddler." She scoffed.

"And you can be such a monster hiding in sheep's clothing."

She sighed. “I’m sorry I called you an idiot, but in my defense, women are not projects. That’s an insult,” she said, tapping her foot. "Are you going to let me help?" Riley opened the door all the way.

“Fine,” He folded his arms across his chest. “How will you help me, then?”

“You call her and put the phone on speaker. I will write out what you have to respond to her.”

He nodded, smiling. “We have a deal then.”

“Deal.” Alice grinned and walked to her room.

If Riley tried hard enough, he could be a little romantic if he listened to half the stuff Alice always suggested. His brother might just be a lost cause who needed her help to get a girl. Alice walked to her room and began packing nail polish and some makeup.

She got a call from her mother a few minutes later asking her to come to the house. Peter was still there getting ready to leave for his event and asked her to babysit Katy so her mother could take the night off. Alice agreed.

Apparently, Vincent was going out on a date tonight, too. It pained her little heart, but she ignored the pang and hoped to focus on Katy. If only that were the case. Alice was not in the right frame after she heard he would be on a date. It got to the verge of borderline desperate to see him tonight.

The time she had spent ignoring him was torture for her and it wasn't working things in her favor. She was stupidly willing to date Vincent after all he does. If things keep going at this rate, she will crawl on her knees to beg him to date her. To her, he was still the one who tormented her dreams. The person who occupies her head space, mostly. The one that made her heart beat every morning. Alice realized she didn't want to lose Vincent to another girl.

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