denyce: (CW RPS: TRoM Chad2)
[personal profile] denyce



Nearly breathless, Peyton popped out from under the covers, her hair thoroughly mussed. Panting for breath, she dramatically laid back, staring up at the ceiling. After a moment, she looked to the lump next to her with a grin and swished the sheet and blankets back to reveal Lucas. Their eyes locked. He slowly licked his lips, overly pleased. Moving, she stretched out on her side beside him, with one hand propping her head up, to easily gaze down his body. Her other hand brushed over his chest, traveling down until it reached the blankets bunched around his waist, hiding the rest of him from view. Fingers playing with the sheet, she proclaimed coyly, “That was… that was nice.”

Up on his elbows, a brow crooked, his tone almost offended, he asked, “Just nice?”

Unable to keep a straight face, Peyton broke out giggling, “Okay, better than nice…” then pursing her lips in a hopeless attempt to be serious, adding, “But you need to follow rule number seven.” She nodded enthusiastically as she quoted, “Always leave room for improvement.”

“Improvement, huh?”

“Oh yeah,” She nodded, and scooted closer, easily climbing up to make herself comfortable on top of Lucas’ body. She lowered her voice, huskily whispering, “Think of it as a challenge.”

“A challenge?” he repeated, then grinned. “Already do, it’s a priority for the rest of my life. To not waste a moment…”

He reached out with one hand, fingers tangled within her hair while his other hand wrapped around her waist to anchor her to him while he rolled until he was on top. His body aligned and slid against her. His grin widened as his length settled in between her legs.

Wide-eyed, her heart thundering in her ears, Hilarie gazed seductively up at Lucas, just as Peyton would do, elated that they were finally together, engaged. But she wasn’t Peyton, and though Lucas would be this excited, on the verge of having another round of sex, it wasn’t real. What was real was the camera focused on them, and Chad’s hard length rubbing up in between her legs. They were real.

As he leaned closer, Hilarie felt Peyton’s easy smile fade as she started to break character. Silently he dipped closer, and she knew it was Chad not Lucas. His eyes danced mischievously, daring her, demanding that they continue and finish the scene. His lips nibbled hers, his tongue slid out, parting her lips, seeking entrance. She nearly yelped when he rocked his body forward, his hard cock sliding against her thin, slick panties, but as she was about to protest, Chad kissed her hard, swallowing the muffled words.

His body shifted. Under the sheets his hands caressed down her sides, his fingers slithering up to her chest. His palms stretched out, thumbs extended, brushing over the pointed hard nubs of her nipples, his touch igniting sparks throughout her body. Eagerly she arched up, only too aware that everyone would believe it; see it as Peyton’s desire and anticipation for Lucas’ touch—everyone except Chad. He’d know the truth, know and feel her excitement. The heat of the lights, camera, and people standing around watching them should have hindered her enthusiasm, but it didn’t. Instead it heightened her pleasure as Hilarie blindly accepted and reaped the benefits of Peyton’s ecstasy. Without thought she spread and lifted her legs to encircle Chad, anchoring him to her body as he continue to rock and rub his cock over her slick center.

Under the blanket her hands traveled along Chad’s back down into his boxers: holding, caressing, and encouraging his movements, but she wanted more, so much more. On autopilot, she maneuvered her fingers until they dipped further along Chad’s crack… the spell was broken and Paul called out, “Cut. Good job. That’s a wrap, people.”

Immediately lights were shut off and people started to scatter. In shock, she mentally backpedaled, nearly out of breath, her heart raced wildly as she just lay there. Hilarie squeezed her eyes shut with the childish hope she could wish it all away.

Suddenly Paul was there, clearing his throat before speaking. “That was good, ah, really good… we’ll just leave, give you some time to recover.” Hilarie didn’t need to see his face, to know Paul was smirking. She could honestly say that ninety-eight percent of the time, Dan Scott and Paul were complete polar opposites. Though right now wasn’t one of them and if she opened her eyes, she knew she’d be staring up at that two percent that was Dan Scott aka chauvinistic sleaze, and patriarchal resident of One Tree Hill.

Dazed, Hilarie internally shook her head and struggled to get her bearings. Thankfully at least, Chad had stopped grinding into her. Whether that was before, or after Paul dismissed the crew by yelling ‘cut,’ she honestly couldn’t say. Chad hadn’t moved away, his body still covered hers, pressing down intimately on top of her.

Hilarie was about to push him away when she became acutely aware of exactly where her hands and fingers were placed, spanned out over Chad’s ass, inside his boxer shorts. A few fingers lay precariously just over the edge of his crack, if she moved barely an inch, she knew he’d take it as an invitation.

Her breath halted, overly conscious of the last time she had touched him like this, when she had crossed that line, from friendship to something more, of when she broke her vows.

*~*~*

She had offered to massage a kink out of Chad’s back after spending the morning watching him trying to twist a muscle back into place. Ignoring his protests, during their afternoon break Hilarie had dragged him off to her trailer, and then unceremoniously demanded that he strip off his shirt and lay down.

At the time, Hilarie would have sworn on a stack of Bibles that it was spontaneous. Though now, thinking back, she had to admit that was a lie. She wasn’t overly conscious of it at the time, but as Chad removed his shirt she’d locked her trailer door, convincing herself that they were rehearsing a scene where she could allow Peyton to come out, and the actions would be Peyton’s, not hers.

It was fucked up, Hilarie knew that. She was married, though she was hurt and too angry to care. Things with Ian had gone from rocky to bad, and she was about to make it worse.

She had been on the sidelines watching things fall apart between Chad and Sophia, afraid she and Ian would follow suit. Though Ian wasn’t another actor she’d have to share scenes with like Chad and Sophia, Ian was on set every day working as one of One Tree Hill’s assistant directors. The tensions on set mounted; every day they watched helplessly throughout Chad and Sophia’s separation and annulment, to Chad’s engagement to Kenzie. Watching their friends struggle to separate their personal lives from those of their characters. The situation was rough and took its toll on everyone. Enough so that she and Ian had agreed that he should start seeking other directing jobs outside of OTH. Almost immediately Ian had started filming commercials in New York that later involved shooting pilots on the West Coast. At best, it meant having a larger, more expensive cell phone plan, and at worse, it meant working at having a long distance marriage.

Problem was it really wasn’t working, which was why she had Chad in her trailer, stripped down to his waist, her fingers working tense knots out of his back.

She could tell herself that one thing had led to another, and honestly though it was a cop out, it was also true. Before she was fully aware of what she was doing, she’d stripped off her own shirt, flipped Chad over and gotten his pants off.

Not that Chad had protested, at least not that she remembered. What Hilarie did remember was her own want and need, fueled with anger. Earlier that morning Ian had called and left a message that he was up for director of a feature film, and needed to stay in LA longer, to hammer out some of the details. It had been two months they’d been apart. It seemed like they’d been playing phone tag forever. Over the last six months no one in their right mind would consider them casual roommates, never mind an actual married couple. On set she started to want what Peyton wanted, at home she felt empty, like she was no longer married. Every day, each scene between her and Chad, playing Peyton and Lucas, was getting more and more difficult to film. Her own desires were starting to bleed through, crossing paths with Peyton’s and reminding her that while Chad was here, Ian wasn’t.

Almost frantic, she pulled Chad’s pants off, no longer lying to herself. This wasn’t right, a big part of her knew that, and she hated herself for it. Which was why she avoided looking into Chad’s eyes; she didn’t want to see any hesitation, regret, or to give either of them a choice. She gripped his boxers, precariously crooked before yanking them down to Chad’s ankles. She heard a choked, “Hils…” before she attacked and nipped hard on his hip. At his hiss, Hilarie kissed the mark, her lips running small kisses over the area before moving up toward his scar. Over the years they all had seen it, usually having to wait as make-up worked on covering the jagged incision. Her tongue peeked out and almost reverently lapped over the scar. Her hands moved to hold him down as she felt him buck, and belatedly realized it wasn’t in excitement. She heard his panic whine, as he called out, “No!” and moved as if to sit up.

She should have stopped, hell she shouldn’t have even started, but she wasn’t listening. Instead Hilarie wrapped her fingers around his half-hard cock, stroking him. Immediately she shifted to a better angle, not pausing as she desperately licked Chad’s cock and slid her fist up and down. She heard rather than saw the thump as Chad fell backwards, a muffled, "oh fuck" barely reaching her ears.

She remembered smiling, thinking she had him, that he wanted her as much as she wanted him. Her tongue swept over his cock before she swallowed the head, her lips pulled tight, sucking hard. She didn’t stop to marvel at his size, or to really compare, afraid Chad would get skittish and force her to come to her senses but in her mouth, against her tongue it…he seemed just right. It made it easier, that he was so different from Ian. Ignoring the voice she swallowed and took Chad down as far as she could. Her hands worked furiously in time with her mouth, spreading Chad wider, pushing his knees up, and forcing him to hold them there.

Her lips tightened, sucking hard, and then she let him go with a pop and a slow lick across the head, tasting the clear fluid there. Leaning back on her knees, she took in the sight. Chad was laid out before her, his knees pulled up, clutched tight to his chest. His cock was jutting out, glistening wet from her salvia, his ball sac taut and hung low, hips tilted. Almost getting an excellent view of his hole.

Without thought she slapped at his lower hip and ass, hard enough to leave an imprint. He didn’t move, but he also didn’t protest, his lips were thinned out and clamped tightly together. She did it again, watching him closely. A desperate moan escaped, his face blushing. She licked her lips at the discovery and then added a bit more force as she swung again. This time he got the message and pulled up on his stretch. A quick glance at him, her grin deepening when she saw Chad had his eyes closed shut. Her fingers reached out, nails dragging up the back of his thighs, then down his inner thighs to his sac.

Hilarie waited, thinking he’d open his eyes, but instead he squeezed them tighter, acknowledging her by extending himself even further, putting himself on display for her. The strain of pulling his knees up showed in his arms. At his obvious compliance, heady with pleasure she started in earnest to rain a series of slaps across each cheek until both were colored deep rose.

Chad started moaning, squirming in pleasure at each firm slap. Whispers of, “Good, you’re doing good, hmm lovely, good boy,” spilled out of her mouth. As her hand tired she alternated between raking her nails over his skin and then caressing fingers over his opening.

He didn’t protest or question her and she didn’t stop to question herself.

The pleasure of Chad’s submission was dizzying. She hadn’t even touched herself, but with every surge of power, aggression and dominance she felt left her body on edge, vibrating, itching to come.

Scooting closer, one hand spread out against the back of Chad’s thigh, she added pressure, creating small pulses, pushing forward to force a deeper stretch. Her voice straining with excitement, sounding slightly rough to her own ears, cooed out her encouragement, “Shhh, relax, breathe into it…” Her other hand moved swiftly, fingers stroking teasingly along the periphery of his anus. Under her palm she could feel Chad relaxing, his muscles giving, even as they vibrated to keep and hold his position. Still, he said and did nothing, just whimpered in need.

Satisfied that she could do what she wanted, she trailed the pad of her finger closer, circling his hole. With each sweeping pass she made, she watched mesmerized as the puckered skin winked at her.

Abruptly Hilarie stopped, only glancing up at Chad’s mournful whine of, “please.…”

Swallowing, she bit back the threat of laughter. Instead, she soothingly petted his inner thigh, then in rapid succession spanked his already burning ass, first the right, then left ass cheek.

Under her fingers she felt Chad’s body quiver. His arms straining to hold position, his cock hard, curved up, the head red, glistening wet with pre-come.

It was a sight that had her soaking wet - she wanted to take him, fuck him hard, finger herself, anything to get off, - but something told her to hold off, to see this through, that what Chad was doing, whether he realized it or not, was a gift. It was clear by the glazed stunned look in his eyes that submitting like this wasn’t something Chad usually did in the bedroom. Not that she and Ian were that practiced in this particular kind of kink, but when they did play, their roles were reversed; she was always the one in Chad’s position. But those were only an occasional weekend fantasy played out - when they actually had weekends.

Thinking of Ian almost dampened her pleasure in seeing Chad spread out like this, but Hilarie knew Ian, that in a different time or place even Ian would appreciate the beauty of Chad’s complete submissiveness.

At the thought, she didn’t bother to hide the shiver of excitement that raced through her, even after she noticed Chad was staring up at her, silently questioningly, waiting patiently. Teeth raked over her lower lip, her eyes dancing mischievously, then trailing down Chad’s body to his heavy cock, pausing before obviously moving down to his hole. An eyebrow lifted as she started to wonder, guessing that, yes, he was probably innocent to anal sex. Her suspicion was silently confirmed as splotches of red rapidly spread out over Chad’s body leaving him with almost a full body blush.

Her grin widened into wicked portions. Lifting two fingers to her mouth she swallowed them obscenely. Moving them in and out of her mouth, drooling, and purposely making slurping noises as she continued leaning forward to give Chad an optimum view. Suddenly she pulled her fingers free, purposely creating a graphic popping sound, pleased to see and feel the heat of his eyes on her every move, eager, begging, and waiting for more.

Salvia saturated her fingers, drool messily stringing from lips to fingers. Steadily she kept her eyes on Chad, not wiping the drool away and moved her fingers down toward his hole. Hilarie watched, waiting for him to understand her intent. Just seconds before her fingers reached their destination, he finally understood. Blue eyes widened almost comically, anticipating her touch. She did nothing more than hover, waiting. It was Chad who moved first, his hips rocked up, his want clear.

Slowly, she slicked the area, wet digits circling like she had done earlier. The tip of one finger dipped into the tightly puckered hole. Wigging, circling the tip of her finger, she then pushed deeper. Watching with amazement as his body opened and effortlessly swallowed her finger down. Immediately she pushed in and out a couple of times before adding another finger. Like the first, she felt no resistance.

Hilarie glanced up when she heard Chad’s sigh, either in pleasure or relief. She was riveted by the sight above her; his head tipped back, his gaze unfocused before his eyes slid shut, lips moving, but uttering no sound. Almost of their own accord, her fingers started to move.

Only half way in, against the heat of his body, the slickness of her fingers was drying, creating jerking movements. Swiftly Hilarie pulled her fingers out. Chad’s eyes snapped open, startled, then questioning, his need and want apparent.

Hilarie stood, smiled reassuringly, her hands at her hips, and then she swiftly unbuttoned and unzipped her jeans, shimmed them down her legs and tossed them to the side. Standing in only her panties and bra, she gazed over Chad’s body, as he kept his position, his cock pulsing hard between his legs, his hole gaping open.

Giddily Hilarie imagined stretching her foot out, her big toe playing with his hole, pushing inside. She had to shake the image away, disappointed she didn’t have lube and that he was too tight and un-prepped for such play.

Even without the mental image she was wet, her panties sopping. Her nipples were hard, pushing against her bra, and still she hadn’t even touched herself yet. At this point she wasn’t sure it even mattered because she knew that if she’d allow herself she could come just by the sight of Chad being so willingly submissive for her.

Her fingers gathered under her panties, gripping the edge and pushing them down until they fell of their own accord. Panty free she knelt down between Chad’s legs, her own legs spread wide.

To get his attention, she held up and wiggled the two fingers of her opposite hand from those she had already inserted inside of him. Then purposely she trailed them down her body, bringing them close to her vagina. Playing, threading through small curls of her pubic hair, inching them down closer to her slick, saturated core.

Biting down hard on her lip, surprising herself, she avoided touching her engorged clit throbbing in need and shoved her fingers hard into her center. Her eyes snapped shut and her pelvis rocked in rhythm to the force she set at fucking herself as she soaked her fingers, and most of her hand.

She was floored by how turned on she was finger fucking herself in front of Chad. Instinctively Hilarie knew it wasn’t just her touch that was getting her hot. It was more than that. It was the control, being in charge, of watching Chad willingly submit to her desires; it actually made her head spin, something she’d have to question and explore in depth another time when she wasn’t distracted by Chad’s needy whines.

Slowly Hilarie opened her eyes, and met his gaze while steadily moving, pumping her fingers in and out of her body. Increasing her speed, she snapped her hips, aggressively meeting her fingers, digging deeper before pulling back and shoving back in. She was close, too close. If she didn’t stop now, she’d come.

Tearing her eyes away, she pointedly stared at Chad’s hole; her pleasure heightened just thinking about finger fucking him.

One last time Hilarie thrust her fingers deep wiggling the already soaked digits before pulling them out, then reached out toward Chad, slicking them against her target - his puckered hole.

Chad’s body shook, a deep guttural moan sounded, sending chills down her spine.

Her own need desperate, she moved faster, eager to take him. Starting with one finger she then quickly added another, shoving past his muscle ring. Pulling in and out she picked up the pace as she started to earnestly fuck him with her fingers. Enjoying the sight, sliding them in and out of Chad in rapid succession.

Suddenly Hilarie moved her other hand, gripping his hip to halt his movements. She blatantly ignored his whimpering, her heart rate accelerating as she concentrated. Scissoring her fingers several times before adding a third, she pistoned in and out, that left her aching in need as she watched, working all three inside Chad’s gaping hole.

Forcibly she stilled; her other hand moved encouragingly over his thigh. “Go on show me how much you want it…”

He didn’t have to be told twice as he started to move. Tentatively at first, rocking his hips up then back, his arms straining to remain in position, he slowly increased his pace. Between moans Chad started to babble, alternating moving his hips with rocking his body forward, willingly fucking himself.

With each solid sharp snap of his hips, rocking up and back, he pushed to take her deeper as her excitement heightened. Mesmerized she verbally encouraged, “Yes, fuck yourself. That’s it.”

Panting, desperate, he nearly yelled, “fuck…” as he picked up speed. Eyes dazed and unseeing, filled with need, he whimpered, “please…”

Initially she didn’t consciously make the connection, but her fingers twitched, and before Hilarie knew it she started to spank his already heated ass. His hips snapped down hard, inner walls squeezing tight, holding them in place as he rapidly moved, thrusting back and forth in rhythm to her slaps. His eyes closed squeezing tight as he muttered nonsense in between throaty moans filling the room.

Hilarie glanced down at his hard cock, its color dark purplish, untouched, and bobbing in need as it leaked copious pre-come. Her hand ached, burned, but she continued spanking, keeping the pace, knowing he was about to come. Pulling from a reserve she didn’t know she had, and increased the power of her blows, rapidly hitting the same spot over and over.

Suddenly he arched, his hips jacking in a rapid motion, shoving down, his muscles clamping down hard on her fingers. With one final thrust, he froze, his body pulsing, eyes squeezed shut, words incoherent as they tumbled from his mouth and he came hard.

Taken aback, it took her a moment to register that Chad had just screamed someone else’s name as he came, and it wasn’t Kenzie’s name either. Shock rippled through her mind, but her body was too needy to have it dampen her desire.

Her fingers slowly slipped free of Chad’s body as he lay there quivering in the after effects of his orgasm.

Without hesitation her wet hand quickly inserted itself inside her bra, fingers pulling, twisting on the hard nub. Her other hand, still heated after spanking Chad, she cupped over herself. Hot fingers slid through the slick wetness, the heel of her hand pressing hard, rubbing, creating needed friction. Past the point of finesse; her need to come now overrode everything else. She angled her thumb over her clit, sliding over it once, twice, before her body shook, shaking in orgasm.

Dazed, her body hypersensitive, she dropped her hand. Slowly opening her eyes, Hilarie ignored the beads of sweat trickling down from her hairline. She glanced at Chad’s sated, sleeping form. Not knowing what to make of it she remembered the name he called when he came— Jared.

*~*~*~

The recall of memory was sharp, visceral, and almost poignant. For a moment Hilarie had gotten lost in the past, forgetting where she was. Now she became aware of being in bed, on the set with Chad intimately lying on top of her. His hips moved in a slow grind— forward, then back, sliding his cock against the slick wetness of her panties.

Blinking and trying to break through the rising lust, she shook her head in frustration, suddenly becoming aware of her position, of the position of her hands and fingers. Belatedly, Hilarie realized she had encouraged what she had been avoiding for weeks - sexual contact - and that she needed to stop. Now.

Angry with herself, she pulled her hands away, pushing against Chad’s shoulders. Kept her voice lowered, suddenly all too aware of the possibly of unwanted eyes watching and hissed angrily, “God damn it, Chad, no.”

Barely aware, Chad only moaned at the loss of her fingers, continuing to roll his hips, pushing and sliding his cock against her.

Hilarie pushed harder, and under her breath, for his ears only, she spat out, “Stop it. Get off!”

Looking up Hilarie could see he really wasn’t hearing her. She bit her lip and her arm swung down, slapping down hard, just above his ass. Startled, he jerked in pain.

It was enough for her to shove him back and untangle their legs. Standing, naked except for panties and nipple pasties, she moved to retrieve her robe.

Chad moved, panting and breathless. “Hils?”

Hilarie knew he was hard, needy. Avoiding the temptation of looking at him, she busied herself putting her robe on. “No Chad.”

Her urgency to leave heightened, but before she did, she turned back and leaned down over the bed. Nervous, almost not trusting herself, her voice nearly a whisper, “Tonight, my place.” Then she turned and practically ran to her dressing room, slamming the door shut behind her. In an afterthought, she locked the door.

*~*~*~

Hilarie paused her anxious pacing to glance at the clock for umpteenth time. It still said 8:42, making her wonder if the damn thing was even working. She felt like kicking herself for not giving Chad a precise time to arrive. Though she had no doubt that he’d show up, it was the waiting that was getting to her, and it would have been nice to eliminate some of the anxiety.

Once she was thinking with a clearer head, she made an impromptu flight out to California and confessed to Ian, after that first time with Chad. She could have hidden it, could have continued breaking her vows by having an illicit affair, but the lying and cheating just wasn’t something she could or wanted to live with. After a long, painful, emotional weekend both of them had started to finally face some hard truths. One realization was that their marriage had been in trouble long before she had done anything with Chad, and though the extended long distance didn’t help, it wasn’t the main problem. Figuring out and facing the truths about her marriage was something she was still reeling from emotionally. Hilarie wasn’t even sure if they could make their marriage work, but both were willing to try.

The sound of the doorbell startled her out of her thoughts. Nervous, she took a deep breath, in and out, moving her arms to shake them just as she did before an audition.

Opening the door Hilarie found Chad standing there, waiting.

“Come on in.”

Entering, he moved as if he was going to kiss and hug her, but even though it was only a friendly gesture in greeting, something they’d done a thousand times, she didn’t trust herself and stepped back.

“Ah, no.” It came out harsher than she intended. Nervously Hilarie gnawed on her lips, and then cleared her throat before speaking, trying to pitch her voice in a firm, but friendly tone, without the harshness. “This time we’re going to talk.” Quickly she grabbed his hand, and ushered him the rest of the way in, “Come on.”

Swinging the door shut behind them, Hilarie pulled him over to the bar. “Sit, and take off your jacket.”

Without a word he did as she requested, a sliver of pleasure shimmied down her spine, and settled at her core. Her inner voice mocked her barked order, and the pleasure she received as he obeyed. Internally she fought against the feelings Chad unknowingly awakened in her. Hilarie turned away with a slight grimace, reminding herself that Chad was only here because she wanted, no, needed, for them to talk. Quickly she busied herself by opening the glass refrigerator and retrieving two beers. Popping the caps under the bar she handed one over to Chad.

She barely heard his quick, “thanks,” before he was taking a long swig. He stared at her long and hard, waiting. Suddenly at a loss for words she broke the connection she felt by glancing down at his hands. They were cupping his beer bottle; the pads of his fingers nervously swiping at the dewy condensation. As the silence stretched, she watched as his fingernails started to dig, ripping into the label.

Mentally Hilarie shook herself; this wasn’t helping.

Noticing his cigarettes sitting on the counter she picked them up, needing the distraction. Then decisively moved toward the sliding doors, calling out, “Come on, you can smoke out here.”

Hastily he finished off his beer and stood. Without asking he moved behind the bar and helped himself to another beer before following her out.

“Here.” Hilarie set the pack on the table as she moved around to sit on the opposite side.

He set his beer down, and sat across from her.

“Damn, this is so hard.”

Earnestly, he stared at her. “It doesn’t have to be.”

“Chad, do you even realize what you’re suggesting?”

“Yeah. I was there…” He moved and grabbed her hand. His thumb moved slowly, caressing her palm.

She yanked her hand away, “No.” Licking her lips, Hilarie glanced up and stared into his eyes. “It’s not going to happen. I’m married.”

He held her gaze, practically pleading, “So, I’m engaged. Doesn’t mean it has to stay that way.”

“God, do you even hear yourself?” Shaking her head, feeling lost and uncertain, Hilarie strained to keep her voice under control. “I know I started this, but… dammit Chad!”

Looking up, she continued more firmly, “I told Ian. I’m going… we’re going to try to work things out. Do counseling.” She purposely inhaled, then exhaled, bracing herself for what she had to tell him. “I’m moving out to California.”

“What?” His shock evident, he asked, “The show?”

“My contract is coming up; I’m not going to sign on for another year.”

“I… we… you don’t have to leave. I won’t…”

She chuckled, the humor falling flat. “I think this is where I do the ‘it’s not you, it’s me’ speech. But it’s true. I flew out and told Ian… it’s what we decided. What I need to do.”

He nodded, looking away. Sitting up, he turned back, his glare accusing when he demanded, “Why now? You could have told me earlier… before anything else happened.” He swallowed, his voice raising, the anger and confusion obvious. “Left a message, a note, a text…”

Not bothering to soothe his anger, she nodded. “Yeah, I could have — about Ian, the show, but that’s not everything… is it?”

He blinked and pulled back.

Hilarie reached and grabbed his hand, this time offering comfort as she caressed it. “What we did…” He tried to pull away but she held him, continuing to caress and pet, as her voice softened. “I never…” She looked up, silently imploring him to see everything reflected in her eyes, what she was feeling when she thought of them together. “Not like that. It was…” Her head tilted as she searched for the right word, then added, “…beautiful.

He turned away, unable to stop the blush tainting his cheeks. “For that I have to thank you. It opened up doors, things about myself I didn’t even realize were there.” She paused, then quietly added, asking, “Same for you too, right?”

Startled, he blinked at her, and then started to shut down. “Don’t. Please.”

Her tongue raced over her bottom lip before the words spilled out, “I heard you, when you came… the name you called out.”

His head snapped up, his confusion apparent.

Her tone gentled to nearly a whisper, “It was Jared. It’s always been Jared, hasn’t it?”

The implication clear, he forcibly pulled his hand back, standing abruptly, his panic palpable.

Worried, she stood as well. She wanted to help, not make things worse. “Chad it’s okay, I wouldn’t tell….”

He stared wide-eyed at her for a moment, looking fragile and scared, before blind fury suddenly replaced his fear. His tone was a warning. “Don’t…” as he moved to leave.

Getting up, Hilarie practically had to run to stop him. Grabbing his arm she said, “Stop! I … just hear me out.”

He stopped, but didn’t turn around. Realizing that this was the best she was going to get from him, she started talking. “I don’t fucking care, ok? I don’t care about who you want, or who you are in love with.” She felt his body tense even more. “But I do care about you, and this,” in the momentum wavered her hand at him, “hiding a part of yourself, who you are, who you want, is just hurting you and anyone else who gets too close. Sophia? That’s what happened with her isn’t? What about Kenzie? She doesn’t know, does she? That she only has a part of you? She deserves to know the truth. Deserves to have the person she loves be there, to love her back in return, one hundred percent. You deserve….”

He cut her off, his voice coarse and hollow, “You done?” Nearly robotic, his demeanor chilled her to the bone. She could see him closing himself off, pulling away from her emotionally.

“I…”

He didn’t wait; instead he opened the door and left her behind to berate herself for how poorly she’d handled everything, for allowing her anger to color her response. Seconds later she heard the roar of his car racing down the road. Swallowing, words finally tumbling out, chasing empty space, “You deserve that, Chad, to be loved like that….”

*~*~*~

Internally Chad tried to outrun the memories, but it was a war. Of hearing Hilarie’s accusations, to flashes of them together, of what he did, how he behaved under her hand flittered through his mind moving from one image to another, stuck on repeat. Jarring feelings of anger and humiliation heightened within him as each image replayed. Each scene was highlighted, and he immediately zeroed in on each humiliating position, even visualized those missing gaps when he had his eyes closed. He heard the words he had uttered out loud. Shadows of shame and guilt crept forward when he recalled with clarity his whimpering need, words that reflected his hidden desires. They vibrated and bounced off the walls within his mind—screaming, taunting him as he drove.

Emotions barely contained, he silently cursed himself that he’d fucked up again!

Minutes later, he was sitting at a stop sign in an unfamiliar neighborhood not sure how he got there; he was driving purely on instinct. His knuckles were bone white gripping the steering wheel; an excited squeal of a fan brought him back to earth, reminding him where he was. He was suddenly aware and thankful he was in the car and wearing his aviator sunglasses—to conceal whatever his eyes might have revealed.

At the moment he was too emotionally charged to say anything, or to even do his usual shtick. Too emotionally twisted in turmoil to even hide behind a chosen character from an arsenal of public personas he had long ago created. Personas he created to easily slip into just as he did for any scripted character, only he was the writer and director. Instead, tight-lipped, he gave a quick nod and waved, barely acknowledging the fan as he signaled and turned left.

Taking a fleeting glimpse in his rearview mirror, he could see the fan still standing at the corner waving. Swallowing hard, he fought against the instinct to run, to press down on the gas and take off. His focus redirected on the road, and he forcibly held himself in check as he maintained the legal slow residential speed limit. Unable to stop himself, his eyes swiveled back every five seconds to glance in his rearview mirror until she was no longer visible. He knew he wasn’t running from a fan, he was just running.

*~*~*

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