Through Thick And Through Thin

Chapter Thirty-Six

Linz groaned and rubbed her eyes as she slowly woke up an hour or two later. She opened her eyes and squinted. Everything was so blurry because of a throbbing headache... Linz rubbed her temples, and after a moment, everything focused, and she realized that she was at Kevin's house, in the bed in his room. She frowned and sat up, ignoring the pain in her head. She was apparently alone in the room. Linz opened her mouth and hesitantly tried to speak his name. "K-Kevin?" she asked hoarsely, grimacing and rubbing her throat. No answer. He must not have heard her. Linz cleared her throat and managed to speak more loudly. "Kevin?"

"Linz?" he called back, sounded immensely relieved. A moment later, he hurried into the room, and his hopeful face lit up with a huge smile. "Linsey! You're awake again!" Kevin climbed onto the bed and enveloped her in a huge hug.

Linz laughed and wearily returned the hug before she remembered something. "Wait, I thought you couldn't see me any more?"

Kevin laughed and waved her words away as if they were pesky flies. "No, no. I know that you weren't seeing Carlos. I just saw him with you like that, and jealousy got the better of me."

Linz laughed happily and hugged him tightly. He grinned and hugged her back, smelling her hair. Then she remembered something and swallowed, pulling away from him. "Uhm...Kevin...I don't exactly know what happened, because I blacked out, but...the last thing I remember, he was trying to..." She trailed off and looked fearfully into his eyes.

"Rape you," Kevin finished carefully.

Her eyebrows shot up in surprise. "How did you know?"

"Because after I kicked A.J. out for bothering Katie, he was hanging around outside, and he saw Carlos taking you and Katie," Kevin explained. "So he came and got me, and we followed you, and...well, it's a bit complicated, but we beat 'em. Carlos and Thomas have been arrested and are spending the rest of the night in prison," he finished. "And just in case you're wondering, we're pretty sure that he knocked you out with chloroform."

Linz nodded. "I don't remember getting hit on the head or anything, so..." She frowned and thought hard, trying to remember. "Yes! That's right, he took out a cloth and held it over my face, and then I don't remember anything else, so I guess I went unconscious."

"Yeah, he tried to use it on Katie, but she held her breath and scared the shit out of him by playing dead for awhile and then suddenly waking up and punching him," Kevin said, chuckling.

Linz laughed too. "I can see her doing that. So did you end up kicking his ass?" she asked eagerly.

Kevin nodded. "That's how I got this," he said, pointing to his eye.

Linz looked closer and gasped, seeing that it was slightly bruised. "Sweetie, I'm so sorry! Does it hurt?" she asked with ample concern, touching it softly.

Kevin shook his head and smiled. "You're so sweet, baby. It's fine. It still aches a bit, but...I can deal with it," he decided.

"I feel so bad. I mean, I caused this, and--"

"You didn't cause it. When you first slept with him, you had no idea that he was a psycho," Kevin pointed out.

"But if I hadn't slept with him in the first place, we never would have met, and you and Katie and A.J. would never have had to be a part of this whole mess," Linz protested.

"And if I had been around more, then you wouldn't have slept with him in the first place," Kevin returned. "Linz, don't try to take all the blame. It doesn't even matter now. It's finished, and we're back together, and that's what matters," he said, wrapping his arms around her and pulling her closer to him.

Linz smiled and kissed the tip of his nose. "All right," she agreed, smiling as he started to kiss her neck. "Ooh, here comes my favorite part."

Kevin looked up. "And that would be?"

"The make up sex," Linz said without hesitation.

Kevin laughed. "Actually, I kind of have something to ask you before we do that, although I'm sure that I'm looking forward to it just as much as you are," he told her.

Linz groaned. "Oh G-d, what? I really want to get you out of those clothes," she complained, trailing a finger down his chest.

Kevin murmured satisfaction and kissed her. "Believe me, honey, you'll like this," he assured her. "I'll be right back."

He rolled off of the bed and to his feet, leaving Linz to wonder what the hell he was about to do. She didn't have much time to speculate, though, because a moment later, he was back. He walked over and stood by the edge of the bed.

"Can you stand up, sweetie? Because this would work a lot better if you were standing up," he said.

Linz nodded. "I think so. Can you help me?"

"Of course." Linz held out her hands for Kevin to help her to her feet, but he picked her up in his arms instead, making her laugh, and set her down carefully on the floor. Luckily, she had regained enough of her strength back and could stand perfectly well. Kevin took both of her hands in his own and bit his lip in thought for a moment before starting to speak. When he did, Linz could see that his eyes were filled with tears.

"Linz, I...when I was younger...I always thought that I would fall in love, but...I never pictured it to be anything like this," Kevin said, his voice thick with emotion. Linz gulped, feeling her throat tightening as he kept speaking. "I never pictured it to be...amazing like this. I mean, when I'm around you...everything bad just magically disappears, a-and..." Kevin choked back a sob, and looked to her with a weak smile on his face. "Okay, I'm just going to do this before I break down and cry like a baby," he decided, making Linz laugh. "Linsey, I...that is..." Kevin let a smile spread across his face as he got down one knee and reached into his pocket, pulling out a jewelry box. Linz felt her heart stop beating entirely as he pulled out a diamond ring and held it out to her. "Will you marry me?" he asked softly.

Linz just stared at him in amazement for a moment before a huge smile spread across her face. "YES!" she shouted. Kevin jumped up to his feet, and the two of them threw their arms tightly around each other for a moment. When they pulled away, Kevin started to kiss her so frantically and quickly that she giggled through her tears of happiness. He covered her face and neck and shoulders with kisses, and she felt his own happy tears fall onto her skin. She rested a hand on the back of his head, and he finally got a hold of himself and stopped kissing her to slip the ring on the fourth finger of her left hand.

"I love you so much, Kevin Richardson," she whispered into his ear as he hugged her tightly once again.

"I love you even more, Linsey Barnette," Kevin replied, grinning.

"No, you don't," Linz protested.

"Oh, yes I do!"

"You can't, it's not possible!" she persisted. They pulled away and had to laugh at how corny they sounded.

"We are quite a pair," Kevin remarked.

"Yes, we are," Linz agreed, resting her head against his chest as he slowly stroked her dark red ringlets. There was silence for a moment, until Linz broke it. "Linsey Richardson," she sighed. "I like the sound of that."

"Me too," Kevin seconded. "I've wanted you to become that for so long, Linz. Ever since I first saw you, I just knew..." He trailed off and smiled at her. Linz smiled back and wrapped her arms around his neck, pulling him towards her for a passionate kiss.

"So, that make up sex sound good to you now?" she murmured against his mouth.

"Oh, yeah!" Kevin replied, pulling her back towards the bed while still kissing her.

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