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       Home, p.18

           J.W. Phillips

  “You’re not. It’s too much. You’ve had a lifetime to adjust. I’ve had twenty-four hours.”

  When they pulled into her driveway, Julie sighed. She was glad to be back in her normal world, but was also sad to leave his too. They got out of the car and Trucker rested against the side door.

  “I’m not ready for you to leave,” she said.

  “Hasn’t your mom told you it’s not safe to sleep with the devil?” He chuckled. Julie could hear the nervousness in his voice. She didn’t want to cause him any more discomfort. Her sweet monster had been through enough for one lifetime.

  She plastered a smile on her face before laughingly saying, “The devil maybe, but not a demon.”

  “I can always come through your window later,” he teased.

  “Promise?” Julie said.

  He leaned down to kiss her bye. “I love you. I hope you believe that.”

  “I do.” She gave him a quick peck on the lips. “Truck, I’m not leaving. I just need a good night sleep and time to think. Will you come see me tomorrow?”

  “I’ll be here at 8 as usual.”

  “I have church tomorrow.” It felt bizarre standing there talking about church with him. She prayed he wouldn’t ask her not to go. She needed to be there more than ever.

  “I’ll meet you at Priddy’s after.”

  Without a goodbye, she watched Trucker get in the car and drive away.

  She hated rehashing things but she knew her mom would want a play by play. She couldn’t help but imagine her face if she told her all the gory details. She decided for her mom’s sake and hers, she would leave it family friendly. Ellen was enthralled about Julie’s description of Sea and Catherine. She tried to describe the house but Julie was too tired to elaborate. After a game of a hundred questions, she finally went upstairs to spend time alone with her thoughts. She thought about a bath, but really wanted to keep Trucker’s smell on her a little longer.

  Dear Diary,

  I have the TV blaring, but not because I’m watching it. It silences the thoughts in my head. Maybe it’s wrong but I can’t help it. I love a demon!!! That was as hard to write as it is to think. But it’s not true. I love a wonderful, sweet, caring, loving man that happens to share a body with a demon. I’m not sure if I should be scared, terrified, disgusted, or just happy. I know one thing for sure I can no more deny how I feel about him than I could deny what he is, and I’m not ashamed of those feelings. I just hope that it will turn out all right and I’m not making the biggest mistake of my life. But he has my heart and that above all else is all that matters at this point.


  She shoved her diary deep under her mattress. Her parents had never once snooped around, but she couldn’t take a chance. After all, she held secrets now that were not hers to tell. She laid down and put her shirt up to her nose to smell him one more time when she heard her cellphone go off.

  Just wanted to let you

  Know, I made

  It back to Mom’s.

  Angel, I’ve never been

  Good with words. Never

  Had too, but I’m still the

  Guy who loves to read

  Poetry with you.

  Who likes to watch

  sports with your dad. Likes to watch

  old movies with you.

  I’m still the guy who

  loves you more

  than life and

  forever <3

  See ya at the Diner

  I’m still the girl

  who loves you and

  hopes to never spend

  a day without you.

  I’ll be the girl at the Diner

  waiting for you always.

  Truck’s Girl<3

  I’ll always come

  for you.


  Chapter 14

  Dear Diary,

  After his sweet text, I don’t know why but I was still scared he wouldn’t show. But after church, my Truck was waiting for me at The Diner. He was so cute today. He was more nervous than I’ve ever seen him. I hardly got him to go home tonight. I know he’s nervous about me leaving, but I’m ready for the long haul. I’m thankful we are out of school this week for fall break because I don’t know how either one of us could get through a full week of pretending. I also can’t put a finger on it but I know it’s more to this coming weekend then just an average family get together. I know Trucker is uneasy about it all, and I’m petrified. I’ll take it one day at a time. No matter what his dad has planned, Trucker and I will see it to the end. I have no choice.

  Julie Emison


  Trucker sat in his bedroom at his dad’s apartment, and shuddered thinking about ever bringing Julie there. At that moment, his dad was in the next room scheming with such evil it turned even Trucker’s stomach. It was not only dangerous but also wrong to ask Julie into his life. But how could he live without her now that he had held her. He slipped his journal out of the desk drawer, needing to clear his head.

  The last few days have been hell. Every time I hold her hand, I panic. I envision it being the last time I get to touch her. I’ve wanted to bubble wrap her and keep her safe in my room. I guess Jake is right, I wish I could just kidnap her, but I would never do that. I only wish she could feel what I feel. She couldn’t envision how I dread this weekend. How I’ve fought for her. I can’t stand the fact that she might get hurt. But if we can get through it, they promised me a forever with her. Loyalty and honor is big with them, so maybe they won’t go back on their pledge now. I’m willing to do it, if it’s the only way I can truly have her. Tomorrow will be great. Her parents are both off work, so I’m spending the day with my favorite family, hers. I hope one day to truly be part of it myself, but first we have to get through this weekend. Truck


  Julie woke up hearing laughter coming from downstairs. She rubbed her eyes and sat straight up in the bed. After another round of laughter, she jerked the alarm clock off her bedside table. Shoot, it’s ten o’clock. Hearing what could have only been Trucker’s robust laughter, she threw the covers to the floor, and rushed down stairs to find her parents and Trucker watching the game.

  “Hey baby girl, we thought you were going to sleep forever,” Dan said as Julie rounded the corner to the living room.

  Julie rolled her eyes before Trucker walked up behind her and wrapped his arms tightly around her waist.

  “Good morning, my Angel, glad you finally decided to join us.” He flashed a small, shy smile.

  “Hey, babe,” Julie said.

  Trucker really was perfect. It was easy to see why everybody including Ellen was crazy about him. The last few days had been hard on him. He always had to play a part. He had never been able to be himself. Since he let Julie in, he lived in fear of losing her. Julie didn’t know how to convince him she wasn’t going anywhere.

  Oh, my tenderhearted man, I will do anything for you. There is nothing your dad or anyone could do this weekend or any other weekend to keep me from loving you.

  “Julie, Julie, woohoo,” Trucker said with a small chuckle, however, his brow crinkled together showing his nerves.

  “Oh, I was daydreaming I guess,” she responded and dropped down on the couch, pulling him with her.

  “About who?” Trucker lowered his head to Julie’s forehead and let out a long sigh. Julie cut her eyes up at him to catch a look that was quickly turning into something resembling pain.

  “How long have you been here?” Julie asked, a little confused.

  “Since about eight, as always,” he said and winked.


  “That’s okay, I’ve enjoyed your parent’s company.”

  Julie started to yank on her shirt when it dawned on her she was still in her old, ratty pajamas, her hair surely resembled a bird nest, and a toothbrush had not touched her teeth.

  “I need to go change and brush these gnarly teeth. Are you sure you’re okay?”

  He sm
iled but it seemed forced. “Great, Angel.” Trucker crook his pointer finger, motioning for Julie to come closer. He leaned into Julie as if he was going to kiss her, but when he was inches from her face, he whispered, “Those teeth are gnarly and that morning breath . . .” He paused and scrunched up his nose. “Stinks.”

  She slammed a throw pillow in his chest and relished in his laughter.

  After a quick bath, she went back down stairs. The noise of the baseball game blared over the banging of pots and pans as Trucker and Dan prepared lunch.

  “I didn’t know you cooked, too,” Julie said to Trucker before grabbing a stack of plates off the kitchen counter to help her mom set the table.

  “Another one of my dirty little secrets.” Trucker glanced over his shoulder and smiled.

  “How many secrets can a nineteen year old have?” Ellen asked. She sat down on a nearby bar stool and placed her elbows on the bar, letting her chin rest in her hands.

  Trucker’s mouth dropped open, slightly, and Julie let out a long breath.

  “Do you really want to know that answer?” Dan asked.

  “Not really.” Ellen picked a towel up off the bar and threw it in the direction of Dan.

  Dan dodged it, then picked up a tray of hotdogs. “Lunch is served, my lovelies.”

  Trucker looked at Julie and winked. Julie, however, couldn’t shake the feeling that beneath his happy exterior he was brewing with fear.

  As they sat around the small table, Trucker took Julie’s hand.

  “So, Dan, did you see that double play Molina made in the game last night?” Trucker asked.


  After lunch, Trucker set about the task of washing the dishes. Julie sat at the bar and watched him as he moved effortlessly around the kitchen. She was in awe at the level of comfort in which he worked. Hell, it was the kitchen Julie had grown up in, but Trucker acted more at home than she did at that moment.

  “Truck, are you worried I’m going to get hurt?” Julie looked over at him and he was looking down at the plate he was scrubbing.

  He glanced at her for a few seconds, then looked back down at the plate. “I’m scared to death we both are. But babe, I promise I will destroy anybody who tries.”

  Julie hopped up and started putting the dishes from the drying rack away.

  Neither one of them said much more the rest of the day. They watched TV and played board games with Dan and Ellen. Julie’s mind would flash to her recent revelation and she wondered if Trucker could really be enjoying himself. To her relief the day flew by, and she was happy when her parents excused themselves to bed.

  “Did you really enjoy yourself today?” Julie asked the minute they were finally alone.

  “Yes, it was one of the greatest days ever.” He grinned and stroked her ear.

  “Why?” she wondered, after seeing his world she figured that day would be the opposite of fun.

  He pulled her over so she was laying against his ‘heartless’ chest and started playing with her curls. “Baby, do you have any idea how good and pure you guys are?” he asked.

  She could barely manage to shake her head no. He started trailing his massive hand up and down her arm with butterfly-light caresses. “You and your family make me feel normal. I would rather be with you and your family than anywhere.”

  “Because you’re good.”

  “Angel, will you ever realize what I am.”

  “Will you?” she whispered more to herself. She wished he could see his good side. His family has told him about his evil side for so long, he was blind to who he really was.

  “I guess I need to go, you want me to come over tomorrow?”

  Julie raised her head as Trucker slid his hand just below her ear and stroked his thumb across her cheekbone.

  “Duh.” Julie brought her hand up and pulled his hand away from her neck, squeezing his fingers.

  Trucker lowered those crystal clear, sky blue eyes to meet hers. His incredibly long lashes swept down over his cheeks. Something inside her twisted.

  “I’m going to show you my good side before you get slammed with my bad.” He slowly leaned into Julie. Her mouth parted waiting for him to descend, when her cell phone went off.

  I was getting back

  to you on your

  questions about me and

  Trucker. Just give me

  a call later.

  ❤ Emily ❤

  “What the . . . You talked to her?” He was furious. Julie saw a vein slither down the side of his face. “How dare you.”

  “No, No, Truck, I didn’t. I’ve never seen or spoken to her since the day I met her at your house.” Julie was beside herself. Oh, baby, I would never speak to her. I’m horrified of her and horrified of hurting you.

  “Get it through your thick skull. She’s dangerous to you and your parents upstairs.” Trucker’s eyes had an eerie glow to them. It was the most frightening thing Julie had ever seen in her life.

  “Please, I would never.” She grabbed for him. He shrugged her off, slinging her against the back of the couch, and stormed for the door.

  “If you walk out without believing me, don’t come back.”

  She didn’t mean it. She wanted his attention, but the last thing she heard was the door slamming. She pitched the phone across the room. Julie sat there for the longest before getting up and headed to bed.

  That night was the first night she cried herself to sleep. She didn’t cry for herself but for Trucker.


  Hearing the alarm go off, Julie saw a beam of sunlight shining in her window and felt the despair of not seeing him. She got ready anyway.

  She went downstairs to find her dad up, eating breakfast. Dan was dressed for work, but as always took time out for Julie.

  “What do you have planned for today?” he asked.

  “I don’t know. Trucker was coming over, but he left a little mad at me. So I don’t know.”

  “What happen?” he asked, concerned.

  “A misunderstanding.” He couldn’t understand I would never go behind his back.

  Julie heard a faint tap and someone shuffling on the doorstep. Immediately, she ran to the door, slinging it open so hard, she knocked a hole in the wall.

  “Truck, you came.” She sucked on her bottom lip, trying to find the right words. “I never have, I never will talk to her.”

  “I know. I’m sorry.” He reached in his back pocket and pulled out a brand new smart phone. “Here’s a new phone and a new number.”

  Julie’s face was stuck between confused and what the hell. “Why and how so fast?”

  She ran her finger along the screen, a picture of them appeared. He had already made their picture the phone’s wallpaper. She smiled and placed a kiss on his cheek. “Thank you.”

  He stroked his face where her lips had lingered. An impeccable smile lit up his face before he thought to answer her. “How? It was an extra one my mom had lying around. Why? Because you’re my world, and I’m going to keep you safe and away from that beast. Don’t give that number to anyone. I mean anyone other than your parents and me. Understand?”

  “What about Tiffany and Tori?”

  He rolled his eyes. “No.”

  “Please, Gene and them are the only friends I have.”

  “Okay, but no one else.” His mouth suddenly lowered over hers. “I mean no one,” he repeated into her lips. She wanted to argue with him, but his quick and rough kiss stopped her. He was irrational when it came to her. So there was no changing his mind anyway. She tucked the phone in her back pocket, knowing it was a dead subject as far as Trucker was concern.

  Dan coughed the words, “Excuse me.”

  Julie flipped her head and turned beet red. “Hey, Dad.”

  “Hey, Mr. Dan, are you headed to work?”

  “Yeah, be good to my baby girl,” Dan said as he walked out the door and passed by Trucker.

  “Always, tell my dad hi if you see him.”

  They both watched as Dan
got in the car and drove away.

  “Is my dad safe, Truck?”

  “Very, I wouldn’t have it any other way.” His voice drifted as he planted the softest kiss on her forehead. “Baby, about last night, I’m sorry I didn’t believe you. All I saw was red,” he spoke with a firm shake to his head. “She had your number and was trying to talk to you. I’ve never had the feelings I have for you before.” Trucker smacked the doorframe causing Julie to draw back from him. “I’ve never tried to protect someone. Please understand how dangerous we are. If you knew the evil in me, than you would know what I’m fighting just to be with you.” He glimpsed at her and tried to smile, but she could see the torment behind his facade.

  “I wish I could feel it, even if it was for a moment.”

  “Be careful what you wish for, Angel.” Trucker put his arm around her and pulled her toward him.

  She felt the coolness of his skin and was instantly calmed.

  “Please don’t tell me you don’t want me to come back again. That almost killed me. I wasn’t leaving you. I was keeping you safe.” He reached up a hand and combed his fingers through his hair.

  “I’m sorry. I never meant it. I just wanted you to talk to me and believe me.”

  He slowly kissed the throbbing vein in her neck. “Angel, I’ve never wanted anybody like I want you,” he murmured against her skin. “My nerves are on fire. I’m on edge about this weekend.” He paused, trying to reform his thoughts. “I can only do so much. You have to be careful. It would destroy me to lose you now.”

  Julie led him over to the couch, pushed him down, and straddled him. He raised his left eyebrow twice and smirked. Julie was at a loss for words. She held up her pointer finger and got up to get him a package off the kitchen table.

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