For years, he constantly protected her, looked out for her. Her happiness was the reason he smiled and every time she cried, he felt the fierce urge to protect her and destroy the reason that made her sad.
Despite loving her deeply, he always watched her from the sidelines. He wasn't meant for her, he had been warned already. After all, she was his best friend's sister and her beautiful world had no space for a tainted person like him.
He shot constant glances at her as she sat alone in one of the side table of the cafeteria, wondering where her two best friends had disappeared off to.
"What you looking at, Jace?" One of his teammates, Aaron, asked, giving him a questionable look.
Jace turned back, shaking his head. "Uh... Nothing. Where's Luke?"
Aaron grinned. "He has lunch detention for sticking Ms. Wales to her chair. The old hag deserved it, honestly," he finished, making Jace shake his head at another of his best friend's stupid decisions.
"He has been detention daily for the past two weeks. Coach is not going to be happy when he finds out and we will all pay for that," he stated, making almost half the table groan.
"Ugh, not again," Tom, another one of his football teammate, grumbled.
"Well, if someone doesn't stop Luke, Coach is going to blame us all for 'not having teamwork' or whatever and stopping him from fooling around," Aaron said wisely.
"Yea Jace, you're his best friend. You can stop him, can't you?" Tom said but the voice sounded faint to Jace as he focused back to his beautiful love, Giselle.
She looked adorable, swallowed in her oversized shirt as she slowly ate her lunch, concentrating instead the book in front of her as she jotted things down.
Jace sighed. Ever since Giselle turned ten years old, she had gotten a leather-covered notebook and since then, she had not gone to a single place without a similar notebook in her hand.
It was so hard to keep himself from ever looking through that book, to satisfy the curiosity that consumed him every time he saw it. What was she always writing in it? Did it ever mention him maybe?
"Jace, are you listening? Jace!" Aaron shouted, waving a hand in front of him.
Jace blinked, shocked. "Yeah, what?"
Giselle truly needed to stop crowding his mind. It was getting too crazy to deal with it every single day and not tell her how he felt about her.
"Are you alright? Honestly, you look really distracted? Everything fine, bro?" Aaron asked in concern.
Jace closed his eyes for a second, trying to compose himself. "Of course, everything is perfect. Don't worry," he said half-heartedly.
"If you say so. Can you talk to Luke though? Stop him from all this nonsense and tell him that if he wants to get detention that bad, he should just limit it to once a week," Aaron instructed.
Jace nodded absentmindedly. "Sure, I'll tell him."
Jace shook his head at himself. If he continued this way, his friends were going to find out the secret he had worked so hard to hide.
Biting his lips, he cursed Giselle's friends. If they had been there, he wouldn't constantly be looking at her, trying to protect her from anything bad that could have accidentally happened.
Now, he just had to find out where those blasted friends of her had gone and convince his idiotic best friend to lay low for a couple of weeks.
Giselle hid a smile as she continued sketching in her diary. Finally, after two whole days she got both the eyes done exactly the way she wanted them to look. Sparkling, full of life and mischievousness, with a hint of pain.
It took everything in her not to run to him, comfort him, ask him what was wrong but she could not. In fact, she didn't think she ever would have the courage to do so.
After all, he was not even her friend.
Yes, he was considered as family to everyone at home but they hardly even talked to each other. She could not just go up to him and say 'I can see the pain in your eyes. Do you want to tell me what's wrong?'. It simply would never happen and she knew that very well.
Next to her drawing, Giselle wrote down a quote, one that her father had introduced her to. If love did not come with its obstacles, how could it even be love? Love is about passion, about wanting to kill or to be killed, for that one special person who holds the key to your heart, body, mind and soul. The only way to have such a feeling even after a million years is for it to go through every challenge and still come out victorious.
Beside it, she wrote the name of the man she knew she loved since young–Jace Haime.
She looked at the drawing she made of him longingly, wishing they lived in some alternate universe where she was not so painfully shy and he was not just her brother's best friend, before flipping the book shut and focusing back on her lunch.
It was hard to sit alone in the cafeteria, with everyone's curious glances, probably wondering what one of the most popular guy's sister was doing without her two best friends. Or as the bullies liked to say 'sidekicks'.
If only Giselle could get the hurtful people to stay away from her best friends, high school would be a much better experience. They never touched her, simply because she was vice-captain of football team, Luke's, sister but her friends were never spared from the insults, taunts and physical bullying.
It made her want to do something to them, made an ugly emotion crawl up her chest and make her crave hitting them and giving them a taste of their own medicine. But Giselle lacked the course to do that. Just like how she lacked the course to talk to Jace. Groaning inaudibly, she cursed herself internally.
If only someone taught her how to have the courage to do things, all her problems could be solved.