One: I'll Help You
"Hey, Ashley!” I whirl around in a quick second, suddenly feel a little dizzy, and see Brodie, jogging towards me. Tilting my head in confusion, I smile at him a little.
“Hey, Brodie. What’s up?” He stops in front of me, smiling widely at me.
“Don’t forget about tomorrow.” He reminds. But what does he even remind me of? Why do I forget about this thing he’s talking about? Did I miss something?
“What about tomorrow?”
“We’re having our usual practice tomorrow. We have to practice our asses to beat Redwood High.” He grins.
Now I remember about it.
We really need to do our best and show those bratty kids that we’re better than them and that they’re just a showoff.
“So, that means we’re going to practice until evening?” His grin stretches wider at my words. “Hell yeah we are!”
I frown at the enthusiasm radiating from him. He will be very disappointed at me for what I'm going to say to him next. “I guess I can’t really go practice that long. I have something to do.” Lots of things to do.
This thing about Matthew’s parents having a connection with a man that could be a mafia or other dangerous type of person is only making my investigation a lot more harder than I thought it would be.
At first when Mr. Warren came to my house and offer me the job, I thought it would be an easy-peasy job. Like I just need to hack into a system and get the information straight away. But now that I discovered this new information, I don’t think I’m really capable of being a secret agent, a spy.
But I can’t back down now. Someone else’s life is on the line right now. I only have 6 months to figure things out before anything happen to Matthew or his sister. And how can I do that? I don’t know. Can I really figure this out? I’m not sure. But like it or not, I should solve this shit I’m in right now.
“What is it?” I snap myself out of my thoughts and look up at him, smiling a little. “I have to watch on my sister. She doesn’t really want anyone else to watch her. You know, we’ve been away from each other for three years. I guess she still miss me for all of those times. And I also have to help my mother with something.” And that's a lie.
Well, about Ellie, it's actually true. I actually missed her a lot. We don’t really see each other for three whole years because I hated Colton and I didn’t want to see him and have him annoyed the shit out of me every freaking minute.
But now that he changes, everything going pretty well between us and I do really consider him as my brother. After what he did for me, I know that he has really changed.
“Alright. But promise me you will practice hard though you probably going to have any other things to do in the next two weeks.” He stares at me with seriousness and I nod my head. “I promise, Brodie.”
“Good." He nods once, smiling. "See you tomorrow.” He waves his hand as he walks away.
“Bye.” I smile.
“Ashley.” I turn around and see Matthew, jogging towards me and a pout forms on my face.
Damn, I feel bad for him. Does he even know what are his parents have gotten themselves into? He could be dead because of his own parents fault.
“Matthew.” I smile a little.
“Come on. We have loads of homework to work on.” He grabs me by the arm and pull me with him. I stare at him as we walk and I just realize he's gripping my arm quite tightly. I pull my hand out of his grip and rub my hurting arm. “Okay. Just fucking calm down. It's not like we have to go after a bus.” I scowl. He glances at me for a split second and roll his eyes.
We keep walking through the parking lot and I remember about the baseball match. “Oh, about the match against Redwood High, should we probably practice more, like every day since we’re going to have the match in the next two weeks?”
“Yes, maybe.” He says as we keep walking, towards his car. We stop near his car and I turn to him. “Why don’t we go practice together?” I suggest. He turns to me, his face straight as he stares down at me. “Where?”
“I don’t know. Here probably?” I shrug. He stares blankly at nowhere but me, seemingly considering my suggestion. He stares back at me, his face still straight with no emotion showing on it. “But it’s not an excuse to not work on my homework.”
“You know that I’m fine with staying over, right?” I raise my eyebrows.
“No. You can’t stay over.” He says, keeping his face straight. I cross my arms and staring up at him threateningly. “Then I won’t work on your homework.”
He keeps staring at me with no emotion, keeping his stance, and finally give in as he lets out a sigh. “Fine. Only for this time.”
“Yay!" Hold up. If I stay over at his house, where will I sleep? "But, where will I sleep?”
“In my room.”
In his room? How could I search for something if I’m staying in his room? He will notice it if I’m gone.
“Hell. No.” I scowl, pouting a little at him like a little girl. He shrugs, walking to the driver's side of the car. “My house, my rules.”
If I’m sleeping in his room, where will I sleep? On the bed with him? No. It’s impossible if he will let me sleep on the bed. So, I’m guessing he will only let me sleep on the floor.
“So, I’m going to sleep on the floor?” I frown, still standing in my current position. He turns his gaze to me, and nods his head a little. “Yes.”
“That sucks," I pout for a second and look up at him. "but, alright!” I beam at him and he stares at me like I'm a lunatic.
I can’t let this prevent me from searching more information.
“You’re serious?” He looks perplexed at my reaction and I hold down my laughter with a bright smile. “Of course I am!” He stares at for a second, still looking at me like I'm crazy and throw his bag into the car.
“Alright. Let’s go practice now then. If you’re fine with wearing your uniform.”
"Okay, hold up." I put my bag into the car and shut the door close, smiling at him. “Let’s go.”
“Matthew.” I shut his car door close, slinging my bag over my right shoulder.
Damn, today is tiring as fuck and my body is sore. And it all thanks to the baseball practice. He made me run around the field for twenty minutes! And he seemed to not tired at all. He was running around the field as effortlessly as having a goddamn morning walk!
I guess I'll never get used to this physical practice though I like sports.
“Yes?” He turns to me, locking his car. His hair is messy from him running a hand through it when he was frustrated with me the whole practice. And damn he looks good.
Shut it, Sophie!
“Can I use the bathroom?”
“Yeah. You can stay in the guest room for the night.”
What? Did I just hear that Matthew letting me stay in the guest room instead of his cold bedroom floor?! Am I really hearing the right thing?!
“I thought I’m going to sleep on your bedroom floor.” I stare at him with confusion and feel a tad bit happy that he's not going to force me to sleep on the floor.
“I’m not that heartless, Ashley.” He says, shooting me the obvious look. “Hurry up. We’re going to work on our homework in 10.”
“Okay but, where’s the room?”
“It’s next to my room.”
“Alright.” I smile at him. He shakes his head and begins to walk into the house.
I follow him into the house and go upstairs to the room Matthew was telling me. I walk into the room and close the door behind me. I put out my clothes and toiletries and go to the bathroom.
After taking the shower, I put on a black shirt and gray sweatpants, my favorite all time clothes. I take my books with me and walk out of the room. I step into Matthew’s room and take a look around the room and hear the shower still running in the bathroom.
I guess he’s still taking a shower.
I begin to step out of the room when I hear the bathroom door swings open. I look at him already dressed up in a black shirt and gray sweatpants, matching my clothes and I suddenly have a weird feeling in my mind and I shake it off.
We stare at each other and none of us move from our places. I’m starting to feel awkward and take my eyes off of him and walk to his study desk and grab his books.
What the hell just happened?
I turn around and find him already seated at the edge of his bed, checking his phone. I clear my throat, feeling it a little itchy. “Uh, Matthew?” He hums as a reply, not taking his eyes off of his phone.
“I guess I’m just going to work on your homework in my room.” He puts his phone down and stare at me. “No."
“No?” I look at him in confusion.
“Who knows you’re going to write down the wrong answers? Well, I know.” He eyes me and I feel anger rising in me. How could he thinks of me that way? So he don’t trust me after I did his homework for this whole time? Well, that makes sense. I’m a spy, a professional liar. Well, not really professional.
“If I do, how it could benefit me?” I pull the books in my arms closer to my chest, tightly, keeping my anger inside me.
“Well, you can make my grades fall.” He shrugs. I step closer to him, feeling the anger keeps rising inside me. “Why do you think I would I do that?”
“Because you hate me. Isn’t it obvious enough?”
“As much as I hate you, I won’t do that kind of thing to just humiliate you. Just to make you fall.” I say through gritted teeth. He stares at me for a while. “No, you’re staying.”
“Fine.” I groan and sit down beside him, whose attention already fixed on his laptop screen.
I guess tonight I could do some investigating. But how? There’s guards and who knows if Matthew’s parents sleep late at night.
At least I should try to do it.
Matthew grabs one of his book and start to work on his homework. I look at him in confusion and after a few seconds, he stares back at me blankly. “What?”
“Nothing. It’s just, why do you even work on this when you tell me to work on these earlier?” I ask out of curiosity because he never done his homework at all since the deal.
“I need exercise too, okay? I’m not going to just let myself forget about what we learned in classes.”
“Oh, alright.” I turn my attention back to the homework in front of me, sighing quietly. I keep working on his homework and mine when suddenly the door flies open. I jump a little in my seat and stare at the person at the door.
“Matthew!- oh, hi Ashley!” Tori says, grinning at me.
“Uhm, hi, Tori.” I smile awkwardly.
“Did I interrupted something?” She asks, looking at the both of us back and forth. My eyes widen a little and I shake my head vigorously. “No! Of course you’re not. Were just working on our homework.”
“Oh." She nods, still staring at Matthew and me back and forth with a glint in her eyes. She turns her attention fully at Matthew, who's already staring back at her. "Matt, can I talk to you?” She says, her face falls a little.
“Something.” I furrow my eyebrows at the way she speak out the word which is sound pretty suspicious. What is it going to be about?
“You mean that?” He says, raising his eyebrows.
“Yeah.” She nods, frowning a little.
“Okay. Uh, I’ll be back in a few minutes.” He stares at me for a second and jumps off the bed quickly and walk out of the room. The door shuts close and I stare at it, confusion drowning me in it.
This is kind of suspicious. What if he already knew about what his parents did and they’re actually trying to do something about it?
I quickly jump off the bed and walk closer to the door and put my ear on the door. Nothing. I guess they’re talking in her room, which is the opposite from his. I walk out of the room, carefully step closer and not making any sounds.
As I get closer to the door, some muffled voice can be heard and the door suddenly opens. I quickly turn for the stairs and try to act as casual as I can.
“Ashley, where are you going?” Matthew asks. I stop and turn to get a better look of him. His hair messy like he just run his fingers through it.
“Uh, just going to grab a drink.”
“I’m coming with you.”
“Sure.” This is your own house, anyway.
I grab a glass from the drawer and go to the refrigerator and pour some cold water from the water pitcher. Matthew put a glass next to mine and I pour some water into his glass. I put back the pitcher and gulp down my glass of water as calmly as I can.
Damn, I almost got caught by him and his sister! I don’t know what to do if that really happened. And what they would do to me if I really got caught.
“-I hate it.” Matthew scowls.
“Huh?” I furrow my eyebrows, trying to think of what he really means. He turns his gaze to me and keeps staring at me. “You’re not listening?” He stares down at me in disbelief.
“Uh, no." I say, staring up at him in confusion."Should I?" He just stares at me and I frown. "I’m sorry.”
“It doesn’t matter anyway.” He shakes his head, sighing quietly as he puts down his glass in the sink, frowning. I turn to him, frowning. “Come on, just tell me.”
“Just forget about it.” He begins to walk out of the kitchen and I quickly stop him by grabbing his wrist. “Just tell me.” He stops, staring at me for a moment, thinking over about telling me this something he just told me again. He lets out a sigh and let his gaze falls. “It’s my parents.” He sighs once again.
“What’s wrong with them?” I frown. Something is definitely up and I'm thinking it could probably be about what his parents actually doing without him knowing before.
“I shouldn’t even tell you about this but I just feel like I have to tell someone about it.” He still keeps his gaze on the floor as he stands there in front of me.
“Then, why do you trust me to keep anything you’re going to say? You don't even trust me doing your homework without you watching over me.”
“I don’t know." He runs his fingers through his hair, groaning as he paces the room back and forth. He seems pretty conflicted about telling about whatever it is he has in mind as he keeps pacing and stops in front of me. "Well, I will say it anyway.”
“What is it?”
“So, yesterday, my parents were meeting someone, a man. Well, I've seen him often in every events my parents held so I thought he was just another business partner of my parents. But then, they were talking about a serum. And I have a feeling that’s something bad.” He frowns.
So he does know about this.
“Why are you telling me this?”
“I told you. I don’t know. I just need to tell someone about it.”
“Why don’t you tell Ryan then? I mean, he seems like a close friend to you.”
“He already know about it actually.”
“So, are you asking for my help?” I stare at him, staring at the marble counter. “Not really. But if you want to, you can.” He shrugs, bringing his gaze to mine. I cross my arms and stand straighter. “What makes you think I can give you some help?”
“Because we have a deal.” I stare at him in disbelief. He thinks I can do whatever he wants because of the deal? Hell no.
“No. Though we’re still in this stupid deal, I’m not going to help you because of that.”
“Of course I’m not going to force you because of the deal. It’s because I need you to help me.” He explains, and it does sounds like he's begging me for my help. Just a hint of it.
“If I'm helping you, what should I do anyway?”
“I don’t know. Just come with me to wherever they’re going. And help me with some other things.”
Go wherever they’re going? Does he even think this through?
“Probably.” He shrugs. I stare up at him and frown. “What about school?”
“I don’t fucking care about it. I need to know about what my parents are up to.” He says, still looking frustrated about this problem he's facing about his parents.
“But I care about school." Not really. "I want to go to college.”
“Well, I told you. It’s up to you if you want to help or not. I have my sister.”
This is my chance. I can get more information without having to worry about Matthew. I have to help him. I need to get the information.
“Okay. I’ll help you.”