“What’s the matter?” he asked her, kissing her forehead. “Upset again?”
“Not at all.” She smiled and kissed his nose. She expected him to berate her for lying, but he let it drop.
He smiled, catching her lips in another kiss. He reached down and grasped her hands in his own. She pulled them away abruptly. “No handholding, remember?”
His expression changed from content to confused and hurt. “That- that was like two years ago… Are we back to that, really?”
She moved away from him, and sat up. “We neverleftthat.”
“Oh that’sbullshit, Lily and you know it.” The were both standing now, facing each other and glaring with a ferocity they hadn’t seen in ages.
“It’s not! We had an agreement! There were rules!” Her hands were gesturing of their own accord. She knew her face was beet red, she could feel the heat growing in her cheeks.
“Two years ago!” He spat viciously back at her. He moved toward her, trying to calm himself. He reached out to her, “We’ve just, been through so much since then. I thought we were past these stupid rules.” He had grabbed her hand, pleading with her.
“Don’t!” She ripped her hand away. “Rules are not stupid!” She began pacing, “The provide order, and- and- they’re not stupid!”
“Okay!” He responded, “They’re not stupid.” She stopped moving, but kept her back turned to him. “But Lily,” he moved closer to her, “That was so long ago. It was before we were here. Back when we were just having fun. Before we got serious.”
She whipped around, pushing him around. “We arenotserious! We’re not in a relationship!”
“Because you won’t agree to it! We act like we are, you just won’t make it official!”
“Because I don’t want to be in a relationship with you!” His face fell once again.
“You don’t want a relationship?” he asked tentatively. “Or you don’t want a relationship withme?”
She took a deep, angry breath. “I don’t want relationship,” His face lifted with a glimmer of hope, “with you.”