Forbidden Kisses - Addison Moore

Scarlett

When my siblings and I were young, we didn’t seem to notice the fact we basked in familial perfection, our nuclear family of five so tight like the bud of a rose. But as the years wore on, the flower slowly opened to the cold, cruel world, and one by one the petals fell to the ground until our family unit as we knew it had legally disbanded. At the age of ten, I had to face my parents’ bitter divorce head-on. It was as painful for me as it was my siblings. We devised a secret pact to reunite our mother and father no matter what the cost, but not a single plan our little minds pieced together had the power to prosper. All hope was truly lost.

Mom began dating first. My siblings and I made sure to torment her dapper suitors until they ran for the proverbial childfree hills. My mother, of course, caught on to our little shooing scheme, and from there on out sheltered us from her would-be Prince Charmings until one day she met the person she referred to as Mr. Right—a man who was shockingly not our father. We were quick to correct her. This was Mr. Not Right. Not a single man who walked on the planet, save for our father, could ever be right for our mother. Mom didn’t feel the same. She married her second catch of the day—another nickname she bestowed to Jim, although my siblings and I bestowed him something far more fitting, The Nine Inch Forehead.

But my father—he still pined for her. It was painful to witness. He wanted the divorce as much as she did, but to see her leash herself to another man was too much for him to bear. My siblings and I grew closer to our father. We became the four musketeers. My father is my hero, my friend, my everything. He would never abandon us and start a new family the way our mother did. Enter Lynette Toberman. I don’t like her. I don’t like her name, her fake spray tan, her over bleached glow-in-the-dark teeth. I don’t like the way she sits too close to my father, the way she pets him as if he were a dog, or the way she calls him Snookums. Mostly, I don’t care for her son, Rex Toberman, who seems to have made it his mission in life to torment me, to prod at my sanity with his sarcastic quips and sexist remarks—the ultra annoying way he seems to have somehow seeped into my social circle at the university we both attend.

Who cares if he’s the star quarterback of Whitney Briggs’s football team? Who cares if he’s the only thing every person with a set of functioning ovaries seems to drool over? He’s a jackass of a human being. Case in point, he’s the chief idiotic reason my father should never date Lynette Toberman, nor entertain her in his company. Her son is a pretentious jock-player-manwhore who burns through condoms faster than the cheerleading squad can exit his bedroom.

Rex Toberman needs to be stopped, neutered, bound, and gagged for the safety and sanity of the female population at large.

But tonight, Rex is looking at me with those hungry, soulful eyes. His lips part just enough as he comes in close, his breath beats softly over my neck. He gives the impression of a dirty grin as he closes the distance between us, his mouth about to cover mine.

Tonight, I don’t think I’m going to stop Rex Toberman from doing a single thing.

Hell’s Bells

Scarlett

Duncan and I just pulled up to the Happy Squirrel! Can’t wait to see you tonight. Don’t be a puss. Just because you’re lonely doesn’t mean you can’t be happy for Duncky and me. See you soon!

Without meaning to, I frown at my sister’s text message longer than should ever be deemed healthy or allowed. Summer is finally upon us, and I can tell by looking at my sister’s malicious message that it’s about to get off to a rocky start. Duncan—or Duncky as it were, is Sabrina’s latest acquisition of the boy-toy variety. He’s about as attractive as oatmeal and has the personality to match. I should know. He was my boyfriend first.

The doors to the Black Bear Saloon open wide as a crowd of heavily perfumed sorority girls make their way inside. The scent of fries takes over, and the after aroma of something smooth and minty seeps into the warm night like