The Gentiles

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Callie

My skin prickled before my eyes laid upon him. I knew then that he was in the same room as me, back to where we were before I had an accident. Him striding towards me and riling me up even before the class started and then choosing to sit right behind me to make me nervous, obviously.

However, he did none of that.

I ran my eyes anywhere but at him, certain that he’d make his way to me again to get to his seat.

Marc was here but of course all Abe had to do was stare him down for him to give his seat up. One look and no words were needed to make people fall on their feet. And it wasn’t like his reputation hadn’t already preceded him. It won’t be a surprise if he was indeed a member of a gang. Although just the possibility of it already makes me scared shitless.

Abe continued walking halfway through the room before turning to his left and sitting on the constant unoccupied chair beside the window.

It was supposed to be his seat anyway since the student who used to own that transferred schools just three months after it had officially opened.

With his back on me, I could now freely look at his movements, shrugging off his jacket and tossing it on the back of his chair, and gracefully crossing his legs with his ankle resting on his thigh. He stared out the window for a few moments, brooding, then he leaned back low on his chair and bowed his head.

The son of a gun was sleeping.

Hard to imagine his face relaxed even while he was resting, I could only see a deep scowl and the crease on his eyebrows matching his crossed arms which were decorated with vines that ran up all the way to his lean, muscular biceps and ended just at the tip of his collarbone.

His looks were threatening enough.

Good thing I didn’t have to see the guy for a short while.

There was only one silver lining, apart from Harry’s full attention towards me, that the incident had brought upon and that was never having to face Abe for more almost a week.

It felt as though I was given a short respite before throwing me back into the ring in a deathmatch surrounded by a cage. I was given time to prepare for the inevitable but I only used it to put off feelings I wished not to acknowledge at those times when all I wanted was to be happy and excited that, even for just borrowed time, I was the apple of Harry’s eye.

I was actually surprised to hear that he and Hannah had broken up. It seemed… unlikely. As unusual as him dating her - no judgment here, she’s a nice girl but I kinda always thought that Harry had a certain type of girl and Hannah was far from the dark haired bombshells with legs for days whom Harry was mostly seen with.

And he looked like he was really upset about it, too. Clearly, Hannah meant that much to him for him to be hurt talking about not being with her anymore.

I sucked in a deep breath as my chest constricted in pain.

If I’m being honest, I thought Hannah might just be the one person who’d stick around this time. My heart resisted heavily at even admitting that but I was genuinely happy to see her dating my cousin.

I didn’t know Hannah personally and Harry didn’t really bring her around when he’s with me but I just had this feeling that his relationship with her might turn out to be more serious than his many previous ones.

It also just makes sense, I guess. He’s going away for college and while being in a serious relationship might just be a hardship because of distance or falling apart, I also think that Harry might also have just started looking for someone permanent.

No more fooling around. No more casual. No more games or experimentation.

I was thinking about it this way to obviously torture myself.

“Callie,” Ophelia called out to me for the second time.

I swiveled my butt on my seat to face her, hearing her the first time before but didn’t acknowledge it because of certain distractions, the one with his shirt buttons opened almost halfway through his chest being the first one at that. Slouched in his seat until miss Holly’s arrival, Weston High’s new bad boy have little to no care in the world.

Poor miss Holly called his attention a few times and the only response she got from him was his head buried on the crook of his inner elbow as he rested his head on his arm. A few seconds later, he was snoring.

The class proceeded as normal but I’m just sure that he’d be given detention for his behavior. Miss Holly was nice as a peach and one of the sweetest teachers in the school, but she was tough when needed be. She works silently, in her own way and just when you thought she didn’t catch you cheating and that you’re safe, she’d surprise you with a meeting with none other than the principal himself. No middleman negotiation with the department head or the guidance counselor. Straight into the guillotine you go.

I’d know, since I let Ophelia copy my answers for a quiz one time about Greek mythology. I’d always been a fanatic and I was crazy about the gods and goddesses and all that stuff about Zeus and his infidelity.

Oh, the intrigue.

Ophelia hated history and reading about legends that have questionable legitimacy. She had no problems reading contemporary, though. She prefers reality than some made up story that was leaning more to a hundred percent being a fantasy. So she refused to read about the handouts given to us while I studied like I’ve never studied before in my entire life and even read unnecessary books just because I enjoyed the crap out of it.

The day of the examination came and when I asked her what her backup plan was since she didn’t prepare for the test, she told me with a sly grin, “Easy, you.”

It was unacceptable and I am not trying to defend my actions but getting caught cheating in a quiz seemed to warrant only a detention or perhaps a retake, not a trip to Mr. Moores’ office for a discussion for conduct misbehavior.

We didn’t honestly think it would land us in hot water and I almost called my mom to flat out confess everything and ask for her help. I was afraid of being suspended or worse, expulsion. Ophelia was calm the whole time, but I could see from her eyes that she was actually beginning to panic. It was a rare occasion when my best friend loses her cool; she was the rock to my shallow river and always knew what to do.

Miss Holly told us that if she condoned such a small act, it would escalate into something worse for we’d think that if we got away with that, then we must also be able to get away with something bigger.

I get it and I had to almost piss myself to do so.

The warning bell rang, ten more minutes before class ends, so Miss Holly began wrapping up her discussion. Some students had already cleaned their desks and secured their binders and laptops in their backpacks, but they were all background noise to a single movement that had caught my attention as I raise my head up gazing unconsciously to the window.

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