Can't Say Why I Love You


Chapter Twelve


Katie smiled drowsily as she lay in A.J.'s arms later that night. She was just drifting off to sleep when A.J. spoke.

"Katie?"

"Mm-hmm?"

He turned her around so that she was facing him. Then he brushed his lips softly up against hers, with a tenderness that had never been in their kisses before. Katie looked at him strangely when he ended the kiss.

"What was that?" she asked bluntly.

"That was a kiss," he replied.

"No, I mean...it was different," she explained.

"How was it different?" he asked, knowing the answer but curious about what she would say.

"I don't know...I guess it wasn't that different," she admitted softly. "Can I go to sleep now?" she asked, grinning.

"Wait, I have a question."

"What is it?" she asked, yawning.

"When are we going to come clean?" he wondered.

"Come clean?"

"Yeah. We shouldn't keep lying to Kevin and the other guys like this. When are we going to tell them that we're a thing?" he asked.

Katie frowned. "Wait...we're a thing now?"

"Well...yeah, aren't we? I mean we've done it three times, and it doesn't look like we're planning on stopping..." He trailed off. What was she talking about? Of course they were a thing.

"Yeah, I know that, but...I thought we were just in it for the...well, for this," she explained, pushing his arms away and sitting up. "I didn't know that we were a thing."

"Oh..." he said as he sat up too, not knowing how to respond.

She turned to him, searching his eyes. "A.J., what we're doing now...I really like it. Really like it. But...I don't want a relationship. I don't want to be a thing. Do we have to be a thing?"

He paused, torn between his beliefs and his feelings. "Uhm, no, of course we don't have to be a thing," he finally replied.

Katie breathed a sigh of relief. "Thank you, A.J. I just don't want a commitment..."

"I know, baby," he said.

She smiled uneasily when he called her that but went along with it, not wanting to cause any more trouble. "Goodnight, A.J.," she murmured, lying down and closing her eyes.

"You know, if we're not really a thing then I might as well go now," he decided, hoping that Katie would stop him.

She didn't. "Okay, A.J.," she sighed as he got his clothes together and got dressed. "'Night," she added as he opened the door into the hall.

"'Night, Katie," he replied softly as he walked out into the hall.

* * *

Linz sighed as she turned over in bed the next morning, reaching for Kevin. When she didn't find him there, she opened her eyes and saw a note in his place.

Linz:
Had to leave for L.A. Didn't want to wake you up 'cause you looked so peaceful. I'll call you...
          Love,
          Pumpkin

Linz frowned and crumpled up the note. Why did she have to fall for the guy who would never be around? She remembered the previous night and smiled. Because it's so worth it, she told herself. Still, she could foresee that it would be a strain on their relationship. She just hoped that the two of them were strong enough to survive it.


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