The first thing Stephan did when he officially turned into a teenager was sweep Rosalinda off her feet and give her a very enthusiastic kiss, which left her breathless and giggling. “What was that for?” she laughed, blushing furiously. Stephan shrugged and put an arm around her.

“I like you, I’m pretty sure you like me, so what’s the problem?” he asked with an overly-confident grin. Rosalinda shook her head but she was still smiling.

“No problem at all,” she assured him as the two of them began to kiss again. Roxie sighed and shot a glare at Sean.

“He’s just like me!” Sean said proudly. Roxie raised an eyebrow.

“He’s too much like you, that’s the problem,” she huffed before stalking away. Sean just shrugged. He knew he used to be a conceited, selfish jerk, but his son was just flirty. There wasn’t anything wrong with that, was there? After all, Stephan needed to have a son anyway to hand down the house to.

Not right away, of course, Sean reminded himself. I don’t want my boy getting tied down to a girl too quickly and end up like Roxie and myself, but someday. When he finds a girl he likes enough. I don’t want to see him end up living with someone he can’t really stand just because of an accident in the bedroom, like I did with Roxie, he told himself, but then felt a little guilty. That wasn’t entirely fair to Roxie. She wasn’t exactly pleasant to live with and she made him want to scream and pull out his hair most of the time, but she was an amazing mother to his kids and a good friend to him. No one else he knew would have stuck around and put up with him for all these years, children or no children.

It soon became very clear which twin was the more productive, driven one. Sarah had been labelled as a genius and gifted child by her school and was now in special classes for gifted students. Every night, she came home, hugged her parents and did her homework faster than lightning before practicing painting at her easel. At first Sean was concerned that she wasn’t getting out and socializing enough, but Sarah assured him that she had plenty of friends at school to talk to and hang out with, but that when she was at home, she had other responsibilities to take care of, like homework and refining her painting skill. She’d decided that she wanted to become a Master of the Arts and master both the painting and guitar skills in her lifetime. Of course Roxie encouraged her daughter in the guitar skill and Sean encouraged her in the painting skill. He really wanted those portraits for his house and as Sarah got better with her brush, so did the paintings that she put up around the house. Some of them were actually quite valuable and Sean enjoyed showing off his daughter’s paintings to all his friends when they came over. After all, Sean did have expensive taste.

Stephan on the other hand was difficult to deal with. His sister had to drag him to the kitchen table to do any homework and no matter how much she tried to tutor and help her brother, he wouldn’t even put an effort into the work and often lashed out at poor Sarah until she cried. He did always come into her room to give her a hug and apologize later, though. They were still twins and still loved each other, after all. Stephan would also skip school a lot to go see Rosalinda or fish in the river near their house. His grades suffered tremendously for it.

“A D?!?” Sean shouted at his son on report card day. “How could you get a D in EVERY subject, Stephan? Music? How could you fail Music of all things? That’s not even a real class!”

“Oh please, like you were Mr. Responsible when you were a kid!” Stephan yelled back. “Don’t be such a hypocrite, Dad!”

“Don’t talk to your father that way! It’s disrespectful!” Roxie shrieked.

Sarah hated seeing her brother get yelled at, even if he did deserve it and locked herself in her room to paint when these shouting matches occurred.

Apart from not paying attention to school or his parents’ pleas to bring his grades up, Stephan paid a little too much attention to Rosalinda. The two of them quickly started going steady, despite Stephan’s horrible fear of commitment and started getting physical with each other. Hey, it’s not like I’m marrying her or anything. We’re just dating. No big deal, he assured himself whenever he started to feel claustrophobic in the relationship. When Rosalinda started taking her clothes off for him, Stephan decided that this might be a relationship he wanted to stay in. He was sure she would put out for him soon, but he was wrong. Every time he asked for sex, Rosalinda would refuse and jump off the bed to put her clothes back on.

“But we’ve done like everything else? Why’s this any different?” Stephan whined childishly. Rosalinda sighed.

“Stephan, I love you, but… I’m still too young and so are you. I don’t want people to think I’m a slut,” she reasoned.

“But you’re not. You’ve only been with me!” Stephan protested, jumping out of bed to hold her hands. Despite his arrogance and impatience, he really did care for Rosalinda. In fact, he was pretty sure he loved her. My beautiful Rose, he’d think to himself fondly whenever he saw her. “Look, do you really think I’d go telling everyone about it? I wouldn’t. You mean too much to me,” he mumbled, going red. Rosalinda bit her lip.

“No, I don’t think you would,” she admitted.

“Great, then that’s settled. Come back to bed,” Stephan pleaded, caressing her, but Rosalinda pulled away.

“I said no, Stephan!” she snapped. “I just don’t want to! That should be enough reason for you!” Stephan pulled away, hurt. His pride taking over what he knew was right, Stephan shoved her away from him.

“Fine then! Go stay a virgin for the rest of your life! Go be a nun or something, but stay the hell away from me!” he shouted. Rosalinda pulled back, shocked tears springing to her eyes.

“What? What do you mean?” she asked, her bottom lip trembling.

“I’m dumping you! Get the hell out of here! I’m sick of your goody-two-shoes, Mother Mary attitude! We’re over!” he snapped, immediately regretting his words, but too stubborn to take them back. Rosalinda burst into tears.

“You never cared about me! I can’t believe I fell in love with such a jerk!” she sobbed, running out of the house. Once she’d left, Stephan collapsed on his bed with his head in his hands. He blinked back furious tears, refusing to cry over a girl.

“But I do care about you, Rose… I love you…” he sighed to himself. “I’m an idiot.”

Stephan walked around the house like a dejected hobo after that. He didn’t shower, he barely ate and he spent most of his time sleeping or sulking. Sean and Roxie were worried about their son and tried to get him to open up, but he’d just yell at them to leave him alone and lock himself in his room. Sarah noticed her brother’s apathy and was worried, too, so she tentatively peeked into his room one evening. He was lying on his bed staring blankly at the ceiling. “Hey,” she said softly.

“Hey,” he mumbled.

“Can I come in?” she asked. Stephan just shrugged so Sarah seated herself on the end of his bed.

“What’s up? Mom and Dad are really worried.”

“It’s none of their business!”

“You want to tell me about it?”

“Not really,” Stephan muttered, then eyed his sister for a moment before sighing. “Rose hates me,” he admitted.

“Why?”

“Because I’m a stupid jerk, is why,” he grumbled. He told his sister all about how he and Rosalinda had gotten into an argument over sex and how he’d put too much pressure on her and was selfish and ended up chasing her away because of his pride. Sarah sighed.

“I’m so glad I don’t have a boyfriend,” she muttered, then looked at her brother. “So… okay you were a stupid moron, there’s no denying that, but why don’t you just tell her you’re sorry and that you didn’t mean what you said?”

“No way!” Stephan protested. “Geeze Sarah, everyone knows you never tell a girl you’re sorry! It makes you look like an idiot!” Sarah’s eyes narrowed.

“If you ask me, you look like more of an idiot sulking around here in your underwear and picking lice out of your hair!” she snapped.

“I don’t have lice!” Stephan snapped, scratching his scalp furiously. “It’s dandruff!”

“Whatever,” Sarah sighed. “I told you what I think you should do. If you don’t want to follow it, that’s up to you. You’re going to end up really lonely if you don’t learn how to pull that stick out of your ass and man up enough to apologize to the people you hurt,” she told him bluntly before leaving to go paint.

“Stupid sister…” Stephan grumbled, rolling over, but he knew she was right.

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