It was Christmas Eve and they were all gathered at Sarah’s house; Randy, Helen, Dylan and of course Jules. Ryan was in Europe with their dad.
They were making merry with food, music and games. Jules was exceptionally quiet and Randy wondered what was wrong. He cornered her at the kitchen and tried to find out what was wrong.
“Hey, you okay?” he asked
“What do you care?” she snapped at him.
“Well, I’m asking you, aren’t I?. Did Dylan do anything to you?”
“Please, not this night. Go find Sarah or something, you shouldn’t let any moment be wasted.” With that she pushed past him.
Wondering what that was all about he walked back towards the sitting room which was filled with the Christmas spirit and soon forgot about their squabble; until midnight.
During the exchange of gifts, they had both somehow managed to be standing under the mistletoe all because he was still trying to talk to her. And Helen was so kind to have pointed it out, of all things to take notice of, this had to be it.
“You both have to kiss, you are under the mistletoe” called out Sarah’s mom from the dining room crediting what Helen had so graciously pointed out.
“We don’t have to kiss; it will just make us all feel awkward”. Said Jules as she backed away.
“Come on Jules, it’s the mistletoe plus its Christmas. I don’t mind, do you Dylan?” asked Sarah
“I guess not” he shrugged.
Randy didn’t want to kiss her, not when he had Sarah, it was Sarah he loved not Jules, right?. Then why did he really want to kiss Jules? He was so confused and he knew that kissing Jules was just going to make it worse but he didn’t have a choice, did he?
He had planned to just kiss her slightly, like a casual brotherly kiss but when his lips touched hers, he felt as if he had finally found what he wanted. His mind reeled from the kiss and he felt her essence pour into him and mix with his, he didn’t even know when his hand gripped her hair and pulled her towards him. He felt her body go lax and melt in his arms. He had kissed his own share of girls but nothing compared to this. This set a fire burning within him, a fire so scorching he wondered if it could ever be quenched by anyone else but her.
Jules felt her head reeling from the kiss, her bones weakened and she thought she had melted into water and would simply float away. She had anticipated this moment but in all her imaginations, it was nothing like this. He simply took her breath away, made her feel like they were the only two people in the world right then. She simply clung to him because she didn’t trust herself to stand on her own.
Dylan cleared his throat after some minutes and they immediately tore themselves apart. The room was silent, no one knew what to say or do.
Luckily the clock saved them as it soon chimed midnight.
“Merry Christmas everyone, time to open your gifts” called out their mum.
God bless you mum, Jules thought in her mind. And just like that everyone forgot the kiss and tore away at their gifts. Everyone except Randy and Jules.
Two days after Christmas, Randy, Sarah and Jules were at Helen’s place for their annual Christmas barbecue. There was music, food, drinks and everything that marks a great celebration. Everyone danced, ate and was merry.
They stayed back after the barbecue to help clean up things and when they were done they settled down outside in the lawn to look at stars.
“So where is Dylan, why is he not here?”
“Not now Randy.”
“It was just a question Jules. Why have you been so uptight and quiet lately, what’s wrong with you?”
“Why don’t you mind your business and leave me alone” with that she stood and walked towards the water front nearby.
“Maybe you should let her be” said Sarah
“The hell I will. Something is wrong and I’ll be damned if I don’t find out what it is tonight” he said as he stood and went after her.
When he found her, she was bent over the water throwing stones into it, and as he got nearer he noticed that she was crying.
“What’s wrong with you Jules?’’
“Do you really not know what’s wrong with me? I’m I really just a friend to you and nothing more? I’ve been trying to get your attention; I even changed how I dressed to know if you would notice me, started spending time at your place and all to get you to look at me as something more than just a friend but you never did”.
“Jules, I’m sorry. I….”
She held up her hand “Let me finish please.” She stood up but still didn’t turn to face him.
“I decided to try the element of jealousy and started dating Dylan but still nothing happened. Then slowly, things started changing and just when I thought I had a chance with you, Brad broke up with Sarah. And who are you to leave Sarah hanging, whom you have been pining for all your life”.
She starts pacing, pulling at her hair.
“Brad leaves this second and the next you jump over to console Sarah as if I never existed. This minute you act so jealous all over me and Dylan and the next you are kissing Sarah and sending her funny text messages to make her laugh.”
“Kiss? Text messages? What are you talking about?” Randy asked confused.
“I said you should let me finish. As if that wasn’t enough for you, you kiss me like that on Christmas day, weakening me and leaving me breathless then the next second you act like it was nothing and start doting all over Sarah again. Is it just me or was that kiss more than a simple kiss?”
“I don’t know when or how it happened, but I am hopelessly in love with you and it hurts so bad that I can’t have you. It hurts even more because you are in love with my sister.”
“Jules I never kissed Sarah and I don’t know what text messages you are talking about.” he said turning her to look at him.
“But she said…”
“Yeah I can straighten that out” said Sarah. They both turned to look at her.
“I’ve been reading your journal Jules, sorry about that. I realized you were in love with Randy and I suspected he was in love with you too but because he felt he loved me, he would never really acknowledge his love for you”.
“Then we came up with the perfect plan, to have Sarah and Brad break up. That way Sarah would be free to date Randy” said Helen
“But to complete it, Jules had to have a boyfriend. The jealousy had to work both ways” said Dylan as he walked towards them.
“But we were there when you broke up” said Jules too stunned to utter more words.
“It wouldn’t have had the same effect if you didn’t witness the break up. That way Randy would feel Sarah was humiliated and have more reason to want to console and be with her, which would eventually make you more jealous” offered Brad as he joined the others.
“Oh my God, so you two are still together?” asked Jules
“Yes, we are. The text messages were from Brad not Randy, another plan to make you jealous.”
“But you cried and mooned over Brad, even mum knew you broke up.”
“I had to make it look real. Mom knew it was a fake, didn’t you notice she rarely spent time trying to help me get over the breakup?.”
“Yeah I did but I assumed you told her not to disturb you. But I guess that wouldn’t have stopped her either”.
“Yea it wouldn’t, but you were so busy being jealous of me and Randy to actually notice”.
“What about the kiss?” asked Jules
“I tried to kiss him but he wouldn’t kiss me.” said Sarah.
“What if he did?” asked Jules.
“I knew he wouldn’t. He couldn’t even stop talking about you and Dylan all the way home.”
“Jules, you told me you and Dylan made out several times, is that true?” asked Randy
“No, the only thing she let me do was peck her” said Dylan smiling.
“I just wanted to make you jealous. So how do you really feel about me Randy?”
“I guess I’ve been scared of my feelings because I didn’t think I could love two people at the same time. But I realised that night when I kissed you that I didn’t just love you Jules, I’m in love with you. And if you would have me I would really love you to be my girlfriend”
“Yes, I thought you would never ask” she jumped into his arms and kissed him. Then turned back and hugged her friends dearly.
“I love you Sarah, what you did was the best thing anyone has ever done for me. And to think I was jealous of you. I’m so sorry” she said as she hugged her.
“It’s okay darling. Love has a mind of its own”.
“Finally, now I have my girlfriend back. How I missed you”. Said Brad as he drew Sarah to him and kissed her like their life depended on it.
“Get a room” shouted Helen
“Planning to” said Randy and Brad at the same time and everyone laughed.
They all had an amazing time that night and Sarah was so happy for Randy and Jules. She had doubted their plan at the beginning but now she was happy she did it.
She spent the night with Brad since they obviously had a lot to catch up on. She was still trying to catch her breath after a mind blowing sex and fell asleep in his arms with a sated smile on her face.
“I love you” Brad whispered as he kissed her brows and drifted off to sleep too.