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Jason and Kylie, Naked in School Chapter 18

When he woke the next morning, Kylie was sleeping soundly, curled up mostly on top of him. She'd woken him several times, caught in the grip of nightmares, and even though she'd quickly calmed down at the sound of his voice, he hated to disturb her.

Unfortunately, he had no choice. His bladder was making itself known with increasing urgency, and he had to get up. It wasn't easy, as every time he tried to slip out from under her she'd grab on more tightly, until it was actually uncomfortable.

Finally, he gave up. "Kylie, love, I need to get up."

"Mmm?"

"I need to get up. Please?" He tried to work her fingers loose.

She blinked sleepily. "You're leaving?" she asked, her voice shaking.

"No," Jason said, shaking his head. "But your knee is pressing on my bladder."

"Oh," she said, relaxing again, and sighing. "Sorry." She bit her lip, then rolled to the side, her fingers trailing over his chest as she slid down beside him.

"You feel nice," he said, stroking her cheek. "I'm going to go to the bathroom, then go talk to..." He stopped. What should he call the Rourkes? "Your folks," he finally decided on. "You don't have to get up yet; you can go on back to sleep."

Kylie frowned. "You'll come back? Promise you won't leave me?"

He nodded. "I'll be right in the other room. I'm not leaving."

"Okay, then," she said, letting him go reluctantly and snuggling down under the blanket.

Jason slid out of the bed and made a quick detour to the bathroom before sliding on his shorts and making his way out to the kitchen, where the Rourkes were sitting quietly at the table, drinking coffee.

"Is there another cup?" Jason asked, fighting back a yawn.

"In the cabinet over the stove," John said. "Is she asleep still?"

Jason nodded. "Mostly," he said, rummaging in the cabinet for a cup. "She woke up a bit when I got out of bed, but when I promised her I wasn't leaving she went back to sleep." He added sugar to his coffee and sat down at the table as John ran a hand through his hair and frowned.

"I get the feeling she didn't sleep much night before last," Jason added after taking a swallow of his coffee. "Aside from the nightmares, she slept like a log."

John sighed, and Mandy reached over and squeezed his hand. "I'm not sure what to do now," he said. "There's the police stuff... I can handle most of that, and she may not even be needed to testify directly, if we can get a psychiatrist to say that it would harm her."

Jason nodded. "I don't think she could, not in front of him," he said. "Maybe videotaped. But... I think her statement and his journal ought to do it, right? I mean, I don't think he can afford much of a lawyer, can he?" He stopped as a thought hit him. "You know, once he's convicted, y'all ought to sue him in her name. Get every penny he has left, just to finish it."

"I just want him out of the picture," John said. "Gone. All of this over with so she doesn't have to deal with it anymore. But until it is... she's going to need some help. Some professional help, someone who knows how to deal with this sort of thing. And I'm not sure what to do about school. My instinct is to pull her out, put her in a private school or homeschool, but...."

"But," Mandy interrupted, "I honestly think that would do more harm than good."

John's face was torn with indecision, and it was clear to Jason that they'd argued over this subject all night.

"I think so too," Jason said, slowly. "She's terrified that people are going to despise her when they find out, and pulling her out would just make her think she was right." He stared down at his coffee before lifting it and taking a sip. "I told her I thought she shouldn't try to hide it. If she does, people like that bitch Sherry will try to use it against her. If she stands up, unashamed, and says 'Yes, this happened to me, and it wasn't my fault,' they won't have that. And it might help someone else."

Mandy nodded. "If she keeps hiding, she'll never stop being afraid. But...." She looked over at John.

"But," John said softly, "coming out of hiding might be too much for her. If it goes badly, she might not can handle it. It might ruin any chance she has of having a normal life."

Jason looked at them. "I think she's stronger than that," he said finally. "And like I told her last night, if it gets to be too much, she can lean on me. I'll help her."

John frowned. "That worries me too, frankly. I.... You're a good kid, Jason. Your dad has every right to be proud as hell of you, and I can't even tell you how grateful I am for what you did. But. You're seventeen. She's sixteen. She's obviously never had anyone she could trust, and you're not known for taking relationships seriously. I don't mean to be insulting, I'm just putting my concern on the table."

Jason grimaced. "Look, Mr. Rourke, I understand. But I don't think you understand that... the reason I never took relationships seriously is because they weren't relationships. They were...." He hesitated. "The best word I can think of is 'fuckbuddies'." He blushed and looked at Mandy. "Sorry, Mrs. Rourke, but it fits the best."

He stood and started pacing. "Could I have had a girlfriend? Yeah. I'm not trying to brag, but I'm not going to pretend I don't know I could have had pretty much any girl I wanted. But I didn't want. Not 'til I met Kylie." He met John's eyes. "I don't understand this! I thought love at first sight was a myth, but... but.... I'm not like those girls who fall 'in love' every week with at different guy. I don't have to convince myself I love someone just because I want to have sex with them, or because I care for them. I can do that with friends."

He threw his hands up over his head. "I don't understand what makes Kylie different, but she is. I don't want to just be her friend. I want—" He stopped mid-sentence and shook his head. Walking slowly back to his chair, he sat down. "I'm not going to hurt her," he said, quietly. "She's not just another fuckbuddy."

"It's not easy, I know," Mandy said, equally quietly. "Caring for someone else and knowing that there are things you can't protect them from. Having to face the fact that the decisions you make don't affect just you anymore. And this is going to be hard for you, too. Maybe the hardest thing you've ever done. If there's any doubt, any doubt at all in your heart, that it will be worth it, then now is the time to face it. Now, before she turns to you for something you might not be able to give her."

Jason took a drink of his coffee, his hands shaking. He set it carefully back down on the table, and looked at her. "That's what scares me," he said. "There's not. Shouldn't there be?"

Mandy smiled at him. "No, there shouldn't be, but there usually is."

"I don't feel any."

"Good," Mandy said, reaching out and patting his hand. "You shouldn't be scared of miracles, sweetheart, just be grateful they exist." She finished her coffee and stood up. "Unfortunately, we have to go to work. There are questions we'll have to answer, and paperwork to fill out, and things to take care of. You two can stay here today, though I'm leaving my car if you need it. You can also call the school for any reason. Don't hesitate to do so if you need us."

John looked more than a little rebellious, as if he wanted to stay there, but sighed and nodded. "Anything," he said, before finishing his coffee and standing.

"Okay," Jason said, looking up at them. "I'll take care of her, I promise."

John just looked at him for a long moment, then turned and left the room.

"It's hard for him," Mandy said. "He doesn't want to trust anyone else with her right now."

"I understand," Jason said. "And I will take care of her."

"Good," she said. She favored him with a small smile, before following her husband out of the house.