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It's Not Too Late

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Story Title: It's Not Too Late

Type of story: One-shot

Main Characters: Jai/Annie

BTTB rating: G

Genre: Romance

Does story include spoilers: Yes, the latest Australian episodes

Warnings: None

Summary: Annie is now dating Romeo after finding out he was behind those romantic love poems she had been receiving. After finally accepting it was over between him and Annie, Jai makes a life-changing decision. Will Annie ever find out the truth behind Romeo's charming techniques that won her over? Will she ever realise how much Jai loves her?

Author's Note: I am new with Home and Away so it's very likely that I will get a lot of facts wrong. I apologise in advance.

It's Not Too Late

Jai's walked slowed considerably as he neared the house. He sighed and stared down at the notebook in his hands before reaching up to knock on the door of Annie's house. A minute later he heard footsteps nearing and the door swung open. Annie's bright smile disappeared almost at once when she saw it was Jai at the door.

"Hi," offered Jai with a small, pleading smile.

"What do you want?" asked Annie, her voice full of an unusual coldness. A glaring expression spread across her face and her hand gripped the frame of the door tightly. She was ready to slam it in his face at any moment.

"Annie, I..." He trailed off and averted his gaze to the floor before glancing back up again. "I just want to talk."

"Well, I don't want to listen to anything that you have to say," she responded. Jai opened his mouth but Annie cut him off. "No, Jai. I'm serious. I can't believe you would do this to me, and to Romeo! He's supposed to be your best friend."

Stepping back quickly, Jai's face avoided a collision with the door just in time. He watched the door sadly as he remembered what had happened the previous week. The one thing that had helped him to make up his mind to take the trip to Japan. He bent down slightly and rested his notebook against the door, hoping that one day Annie would know the truth.

"You should tell her the truth," Xavier whispered as Jai, Ruby and him sat themselves down at a table in the diner.

"Xavier is right," Ruby chimed in. She narrowed her eyes at Romeo and Annie who were having dinner at the diner too.

Xavier had confessed to her that Jai was the one who had been writing love poems to Annie. Ruby didn't believe them at first but when Jai showed her the peoms he had been working on, she was furious at Romeo. Jai had managed to convince her to keep quiet but neither Ruby nor Xavier were happy with this.

"She's happy," murmured Jai.

It was true. Annie was always smiling and she was so much more outgoing than she had been in the past. Jai didn't want to walk away and let her go but Miles managed to persuade him to move on with his life. Except, he couldn't.

They watched as Romeo reached for Annie's hand across the table.

"So, now that you've got me, you're not going to write me anymore love poems?" she whispered questioningly.

Romeo let out a small laugh. "Well," he grinned. "I do have a natural talent for this stuff. I guess I could write you a few more. I'm expecting some sort of present in return though," said Romeo with a suggestive smile.

"Okay, that's it," Ruby said. She stood up and walked over to them before Xavier and Jai could stop her. "Annie, don't believe a word he says. He's a total liar." She glared at Romeo coldly. "Jai is the one who has been writing the poems to you, not Romeo."

There was a flicker of confusion across Annie's face and she turned to Romeo who just stared at Ruby with a blank look.

"Ruby, let it go," Jai whispered, trying to pull Ruby away.

"No, let's talk about it," Annie insisted. "I'm guessing Jai was the one who told you he wrote the poems."

Xavier groaned from where he was stood next to Ruby. He knew where this was going.

"Jai, I told you, I'm not interested. I can't believe you're trying to take credit for Romeo's work. I don't ever want to see or speak to you again!"

Annie reached for Romeo's hand and stormed out of the diner leaving Jai stood there... speechless.

Annie's head rested against the door and the second she heard Jai's footsteps fade away, she opened it again and stepped out. A tear slid down her face. He was leaving to go to Japan today and although he wouldn't be gone forever, she didn't want to leave it like this. She felt something underneath her foot and when she looked down, she saw a notebook. It wasn't there before so she knew Jai had left it. Annie reached down and picked it up, slowly flipping the cover over and gasped at what she saw. It was poem. She turned the page again and found another poem. Each one was written in Jai's handwriting, describing the moment's they had shared together in the past.

Without thinking twice, she ran out of her house and headed straight for the diner. When she finally reached it, she was completely out of breath.

"Geoff," she cried, panting heavily as she tried to catch her breath.

"Annie, what's wrong?" asked Geoff with concern washing over his face.

"I need you to drive me to the airport," Annie told him. "Please. I need you to take me now."

"What... Annie, what's going on?" Geoff was completely confused.

"It was Jai all along," Annie explained in a rushed voice. "It was Jai. He wrote me the poems. And I've been so mean to him. I need to stop him. I don't want him to go thinking I hate him."

"All right," replied Geoff, jumping to his feet. "Come on," he told her as they rushed outside towards his car.

They strode along the marble floor before stopping a few feet away from the gate. Miles handed Jai his suitcase and rested both hands on his shoulders.

"Behave when you get to Japan, okay?" Miles told him, starting to get teary-eyed. "This is a fantastic opportunity for you and I want you to know that I -" Kirsty cleared her throat from behind Miles and he immediately corrected himself. "I want you to know that Kirsty and I are really proud of you."

They pulled him into a three-person hug before releasing him so Jai could say goodbye to the others. Nicole gave Jai a long hug and stepped aside for Ruby to hug him as well. Jai and Xavier then shared an awkward guy hug which prompted laughter from Ruby and Nicole.

"We're going to miss you, mate," Xavier said sincerely.

"Yeah, I'm going to miss all of you too," Jai told them as he gaze swept across his family and friends' faces. "I guess I should go now."

Jai gave them a weak smile before starting towards the gate.

"Jai! Jai!"

He turned around and shock paralysed him. Annie was dashing through the airport with a tear-stained face and Geoff followed behind her. When she finally reached him, she threw her arms around his neck and hugged him. Geoff looked on in disbelief at how forward Annie had become. He hoped his little sister wasn't planning on engaging in a make-out session in the middle of the airport although he was sure that was going too far for Annie.

"Annie, what are you doing here?" Jai asked in a muffled voice.

"I'm sorry," said Annie, pulling away from him. "I read the poems. I know it was you. I'm sorry." She took a deep breath before adding, "Don't go."

Miles exchanged an anxious look with Rachel which didn't escape Jai's notice. He knew how amazing this opportunity was. He knew how much it took for them to let him go. Miles caught Jai's eye and gave him an encouraging nod.

"Why should I stay? You said you never wanted to see me again," Jai reminded her.

"Jai, I'm sorry. I want you to stay. These poems were beautiful. Forget Ruby's birthday party, forget the porn, forget Dexter and Romeo. Please stay. Please," Annie whispered. "I know I've been horrible to you lately but I just... I just got swept up in Romeo's charm," she admitted.

"What about now? What about Romeo?" asked Jai.

"I'm going to end it with him. I don't want to be with a liar. I want... I want to be with you." Annie held her breath as she waited for Jai's response. A part of her hoped he loved her enough to forget everything negative that had happened between them in the past.

"I'm sure Japan isn't that great anyway," Jai finally said.

Annie broke out into a huge grin and pressed her lips against his cheek before hugging him tightly.

"I don't want to lose you, ever," whispered Annie as her head rested against his shoulder.


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