Sophie ©️

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Chapter 6

When I wake up, I stretch out hearing my shoulder click, pain shoots through me but thankfully fades quickly. I turn to look at the time, 5 am reads on my digital clock. Perfect I will have time to do my morning yoga and have a jog before school. I wave my hand and instantly I'm in yoga pants and a tank top. I then calmly walk outside the house and do my morning yoga routine.

“Oh come on Sophia.” Nathan moans out of his bedroom window, which is indeed opposite mine.

“Get some headphones,” I tell him, trying my hardest not to laugh at his grumpy face. He slams his bedroom window shut, he really isn’t a morning person. I carry on doing my routine, not as long as I normally would though but I get to my inner peace and after yesterday I need that. especially with what is possibly in store at school today. Then I go on a 45 minutes jog, yes I set an alarm to make sure I don't lose track of time. I again see the paperboy who looks me up and down and then rolls his eyes.

‘Hey, you’re up this early too.’ I want to tell him, instead, I sped up and pass him. He glares at me when I do. I am going to work out this guy’s problem with me because I haven't done anything to him yet.

When I get back to the house, Nathan is stood outside, he is dressed in a team jacket confirming to me he is indeed on the football team.

“Hey if you want a lift you got 35 minutes,” he tells me with a smirk as if he doubts its possible.

“If I don’t?” I ask him.

“You got 5 minutes till Mr. D leaves or 12 minutes till the bus your choice.” He says with a smirk.

“Give me 40.” I sigh and run up the steps to the house and knock on the door, Charlie answers thankfully quickly.

“Sophia I need to go in 10 minutes at the latest,” Charlie informs me as he opens the door. I might have misjudged how long my run was going to be to get back, my shoulder had turned into a dull ache, which had slowed me down.

“Don’t worry Charlie Nathans taking me,” I tell him making my way past him and straight into the bathroom and shutting the door. I then jump in the shower waving my hand to instantly get undressed. I make my phone set a 5-minute timer and quickly wash, coming out smelling like strawberries. I then jump out the shower 2 minutes after my alarm beeps. I quickly wave my hand and my hair drys and straightens itself. I look at myself in the bathroom mirror as I clean my teeth, what the hell am I meant to wear today? no outfits come to mind. I look straight into the mirror and start a spell hoping Vinnie is able to get to a mirror quickly.

“Mirror, mirror on the wall place my call to Vanessa so she can help me find an outfit for today,” I say, fully aware it's not the best spell. but again it works, why rhyme when things work without the need?

“That was a sucky spell, Sophie,” Vinnie says looking at me through the mirror, I take her in, she is stood in a bathroom herself, wrapped in a black towel. I'm stood in a bright pink one.

“Help.” I sigh.

“Help?” she asks me as a question, looking worried.

“Oh come on you know Tiff and I normally lay out our outfits for the month together before we go to school. I need help. I can't choose my first outfit of school alone” I admit. Vinnie laughs a fully belly shaking laugh as if she finds it hilarious. It really isn't. but I smile at her waiting for her to calm down enough to talk.

“Honestly?” she asks me in disbelief.

“You’re asking me for fashion advice?” she asks me. I look at one of my best friends in the whole world. I take in her jet black hair with bright purple highlights, which she has cut short into a pixie cut so she doesn’t have to bother with it. Knowing that she is still fashionable, just not in the same way as Tiff and I. Still laughing she waves her hand and dresses in a black band t-shirt for a band I have never heard of and some ripped black jeans. she matches it with guitar earrings, she looks like a rock chick and it suits her. you would never look at her and say witch thats for sure.

“Yes, I’m asking for your advice on what I should wear, don’t make me beg Vinnie,” I say pouting slightly. I should have just video called Tiff, but I know she would be on a video call with one of the squad by now. Vinnie looks me over and a smile goes to her lip. she looks at my straight hair and shakes her head. She then waves her hand and my hair curls slightly and then goes into a half up half down style and pins itself perfect, she sticks out her tongue in concentration as she does it. Its a style I've worn before and my Mom always complimented on how pretty it was.

“Nails.” She says I hold up my hand, she waves her own hand and my nails paint themselves a light mint green. she grins at me a smile that says she knows full well what she's doing. waving her hand again some light blue jeans melt themselves to my body. then a light green bra goes on me and I let my towel fall to the ground. she looks thoughtfully as she waves her hand again and a light green long sleeve off the shoulder top that has a dream catcher goes onto me. I've never seen this outfit before. She must have seen it in a magazine or on a manakin. it's really cute. she waves her hand again looking at my ears seriously. my earings change into little dream catches, and jewelry that matches my outfit perfect settles onto me. She looks at me seriously and my makeup goes onto me, looking natural. I should get Vinnie to dress me more often.

“You look amazing, now go make some friends and not enemies. I've got to get to class.” Vinnie says with a smile. looking me over as if proud of her choices.

“Shoes?” I ask her before she can hang up.

“Your all-stars.” She says rolling her eyes as if that should be obvious. I nod and put on my mint green all-stars with a wave of my own hand.

“Love you, have fun,” Vinnie says, waving her own hand and her handbag with a skull goes onto her.

“Love you too,” I tell her. She ends the call then with a wave of her hand. I walk out of the bathroom. The house is so quiet it feels wrong, no Mom cursing as she tries to get everything done before she goes to work. Charlie has already gone, but there is a lunchbox on the side for me, with the designer backpack I had brought from the mall with Tiff before I even knew I was coming here. I put my lunch into the bag then grab a cup of juice and quickly make a piece of toast then go outside still eating.

“Wow that was quick,” Nathan says looking me up and down from where he sits in his car on his phone, a travel cup of coffee in his other hand.

“Yeah, I can get dressed quick.” I shrug.

“Nice outfit.” He says actually looking like he meant that to, at least one of the brothers has fashion sense.

“You too,” I say looking him up and down, he looks like a normal football jock.

“Come on then, before all the good parking spaces are gone, I'm already getting there later than I want today.” He says. I climb into his car. it's a small little thing that I wonder how someone as tall as him is comfortable in.

“Alright if you want to be popular.” He starts after he's pulled out of the drive. I hold tightly to the suicide handle. I need to address my fear of cars. I look at him, trying to focus on anything but the cars movements and the other cars flashing through the window.

“You need to make friends with Valerie,” Nathan informs me.

“Alright,” I say. I'm not going into the fact that I don't want to make fake friends, I've had enough of those to last me a lifetime.

“Alright, Valerie and Teagan.” He tells me.

“Thanks, Nathan,” I say and I mean it, he's actually trying to be nice to me.

“Did Mr. D mention last night?” he asks me.

“All he said was if I wanted a lift to school I had ten minutes.” I shrug. Nathan looks annoyed.

“So what was your plan go home?” he questions me.

“I didn’t really have one, I just wanted away from him.” I shrug. He goes to say something but obviously changes his mind.

“So I don’t know what classes we have together, but don’t talk to me in school unless you are popular.” He tells me.

“There I thought you were going to be that big brother I never wanted,” I tell him sarcastically but have to smile I can’t help it. wasn't that exactly what Tiff had said to one of her siblings last year, in fact, she added

'even then just don't.'

“I am. good little sisters don’t bother their big brothers.” He points out laughing, seems he is indeed happier after a coffee. I laugh.

“Oh come on your older than me by how many months?” I ask interested.

“Apparently 6 and don’t forget it,” he says laughing.

“You’re alright with our parents dating?” he asks me.

“Yeah, I kind of understand that even parents have needs,” I say.

“Eww don’t say that,” he says pulling a face. I realize at the same time and pull a very similar grossed out face. we both laugh, being in the car with Nathan wasn’t as awkward as I thought it would be. It was possibly less awkward than it would have been with Charlie.

“So who've you got for homeroom?” he asks me as I pull out the brown envelope, I haven't really looked at, just made sure I had the same subjects I was doing.

“Mrs. Carter?” I say.

“Alright same, I'll take you to homeroom.” He tells me. That's good I won't get lost on my first day.

“What you got first period?” he asks me.

“AP Biology,” I say looking at it.

“AP?” he questions me.

“What don’t I look smart?” I question him, I should have pushed for early graduation, but I wanted to stay with Tiff.

“Is this a trick question? you tried to run away without any plan.” He points out.

“What’s your second period?” he asks me.

“AP Latin,” I say.

“Latin? I thought you were popular?” he questions me in disbelief.

“I was a cheerleader, no one ever said that didn’t mean I'm smart.” I shrug.

“Next?” he asks me, he obviously hasn't got any of those subjects with me.

“break,” I say.

“Next English, fuck with Charlie.” I groan in disbelief.

“Oh, that’s going to be a fun lesson, but same.” Nathan laughs.

“Next?” he asks.

“Study hall,” I say shrugging. We then spent the rest of the journey matching our classes up for the whole week. In total, I had homeroom, English, Gym, and History with Nathan. When we get to school, I look at it through the window, it is smaller than my old school. Which means fewer people but it also means less chance of me having a friend. I hope to hell that Caspian has come through. Nathan parks up.

“Your choice you can get the bus back or Mr. D or meet me here at 2.15,” he says.

“I will let you know,” I say. He nods excepting that.

“Alright see you later Sophie.” He says.

“See you later,” I say. I thought he was going to walk me to my first class? I jump out his car though and start making my way towards the school, he walks next to me a second later, Oh was it a case of not knowing what else to say? I see a girl storming up towards us looking extremely pissed off, she purposely shoulder hit me on her way to Nathans side. I know that move from Abbie, but omg it hurt my shoulder which was already throbbing today, I pretend it doesn't as she's not paying me any attention anyway.

“Watch where you’re going freak.” She sneers at me under her breath as I walk faster to get away from her and Nathan. I look at her over my shoulder and say very calmly.

“Excuse me, freak.” Then I walk off calmly like I wasn’t even affected by her and to be honest I'm not. When I get in the front door I make my way to my locker, it's easy to find as the numbers go up along one wall. When I look back when I find my locker, I see Nathan walking down the hall with that girl attached to his arm, I take it she must be his girlfriend. They deserve each other. Thats also when someone covers my eyes and grabs me from behind. I try not to react until I know what's going on, could be a prank on the new girl, but the smell of saltwater meets me.

“Guess who witchy.” A voice laughs into my ear, He really should know better than to sneak up on a witch. but I laugh, he came through.

“Fish boy,” I say laughing.

“How’d you guess?” he questions me laughing letting me go. I turn to look at him as he flashes his brown envelope in front of my face. I look him up and down trying not to laugh, taking in his outfit or well lack of outfit. He lives in the ocean he deserves a small break, unlike Justin.

“Caspian are we going school or surfing?” I ask him interested.

“Surfing straight after school,” he says deadly calm smiling at me, he knows full well how good looking he is, even if he looks so pale. A girl walks past and her eyes go wide, I don't blame her.

“Where is your top and well all your clothes?” I ask Caspian laughing.

“Do I need clothes? the lady in the office didn’t say,” he informs me laughing.

“Was she too busy oogying you?” I question him.

“Pretty much,” he admits shrugging. I roll my eyes.

“Come on let's go see about clothes,” I say grabbing his arm, he laughs, but we walk past Nathan and his friends a second later.

“This school will let anyone in this year.” Freak girl from the carpark says loudly and like she is disgusted. Come on really? Caspian is Hot!

“Apparently so,” Nathan says trying his hardest to catch me in the eyes when he does he mouths

‘what the hell!’ I shrug and walked Caspian until we find a boys toilet I then push him in.

“Clear.” He calls as I wait outside. I walk in when hes spoken.

“Do you own any clothes?” I question him.

“Not really, a few bits but all our own special brand” He admits. I roll my eyes.

“Of course you don’t because you spend your life naked,” I say.

“Not exactly naked but I really don’t get how humans have legs all the time.” He says. I look at him in just his Speedo.

“Alright come to mine every morning,” I tell him.

“What you have a problem with my outfit?” he questions me grinning. A guy walks in then.

“OMG.” He says.

“Man get some clothes on!” he says.

“I agree. get in that cubical and get dressed.” I say laughing.

“Ah, you’re no fun,” Caspian says grinning at me. I laugh.

“Go in.” I laugh. He went in,

“GET OUT THIS IS THE GUYS!” The guy who had walked in shouts at me. I look at him and shrug. I wave my hand as if I was just expressive.

“Get that outfit on Caspian I will be outside waiting,” I say and walk out. Nathan is stood outside the door when I get out there. Great, not.

“I told you not to make friends with freaks!” Nathan tells me.

“I don’t even know what to say about that,” I admit laughing. Thats when the guy came out who had kicked me out of the bathroom.

“Nathan.” He says in disbelief.

“Are you going to introduce me to your new friend?” he asks looking me over.

“We aren’t friends,” Nathan says firmly and matter of factly, looking at his friend. Ouch got it Nathan you don’t have to say it like that.

“That’s a shame she’s so hot. if you ever get bored of that guy let me know. I know how to keep my woman happy especially in that department.” The guy says I raise an eyebrow knowing what he means. I've dealt with guys like him before.

“I will keep that in mind, but I saw your lack of a pistol in the boy’s room,” I say as Caspian comes out of the bathroom, now thankfully dressed in a pair of baggy shorts, a surf top and a pair of flip-flops. as that’s what I knew would keep him happy today and I didn’t have a chance to play fashion shop with him in there.

“Come on Fee let’s get to homeroom,” Caspian says throwing his arm over my shoulder.

“Fee?” I question him as we walk off.

“Well I can’t call you Witchy and bitchy in public, and Sophie is what everyone else calls you,” he tells me. I roll my eyes. But I let him lead me. We and that means all four of us as Nathan and his friend are only a few steps behind us, just make it to homeroom.

I find myself sitting next to paperboy as there are only 5 desks left when we get into homeroom and none of them are together. Caspian goes to the seat in front of him, only one person diagonal from me at least. which is why we took these chairs. Nathan heads to the back row, with his friend as their friends have saved them chairs.

“Well, we have two new students with us this year.” Our new homeroom teacher says as the first thing. oh please, please don’t introduce us or make us introduce ourselves. I've always hated that on behalf of the new kid. I never thought I would have to do it.

“Caspian Tempest.” Omg, he didn’t! I look at him my aunt is going to kill him, did he know how witches thought of there last names! Come on Aunty Beaty had kept hers and just added her husbands after marriage rather than changed it. So had my mom whilst she was married to Charlie!

“And Sophia Tempest-Davies. Would you both like to introduce yourselves?” She asks calmly. I look at Caspian, he turns to look at me as if to say you take her.

“Why don’t you start Caspian.” The teacher says encouragingly.

“Uh can Sophia start?” he asks.

“Ah, you shy all of a sudden Caspian you weren’t shy in the hall.” The toilet guy says. I will deal with this quickly.

“Hey I'm Sophia I am from Texas, that’s Caspian he's from all around the world,” I say.

“Ah, Sophia, Caspian surely you both have more to say than that.” The teacher says encouragingly? Do they get trained in how to embarrass kids or does it come naturally? I twirl my fingers in my hair it is enough to get what I want, but not look like I'm up to anything.

“Thank you both of you, welcome and I am sure the whole class welcome you and hope you have an amazing time with us,” she says. The Paperboy turns in his seat to look at me like I was something he had stepped in. The rest of the homeroom thankfully went fast. When the bell finally goes the class got out of there very quickly, I hover, behind with Caspian though.

“Is your last name really Tempest?” he questions me quietly so only I can hear him. I put a small sound block up as I have something to say to him about our last name thing.

“Yeah, why’d you give yourself.” I start slightly peed off with him.

“I didn’t I gave myself my real last name, I know how witches feel about there last names I wouldn’t have ever dreamed of doing that.” he laughs as if he's in disbelief I suppose the chances of us having the same last name were slim but possible.

“want to pretend to be cousins, if anyone asks?” he asks me.

“Sounds good.” I sigh but I link my finger into his and laugh. We walk to our first lesson, him having linked his own classes to my own.

Our first two classes of the day go by fast. having Caspian in with me made me feel settled quicker than I thought I would do. I didn’t use my magic at all and neither did he. I feel with him by my side here I can do this. I also don’t feel such an outcast as I'm not alone. Caspian has even managed to make himself two other friends. He is extremely friendly, perhaps a bit overfriendly. The girls though kind of hang off his every word. Part of me wonders if he has a pinch of Siren in him.

When we go into English I see Charlie for the first time that day, this morning not included. I don’t really know what to do. Should I just try to blend in with his class? surely the administration saw how giving me my dads class wasn't a good idea? Caspian though indicates two desks together and I follow him, I've already told him the English teachers, my dad. But I don't think no one else in class knows. I hope not at least. The girl who called me a freak earlier comes in the classroom with Nathan. She sits right next to him and leans straight over to talk to him. Why isn't Charlie stopping this? Nathan is obviously trying to listen to Charlie, as he hands out books and tells us all about what we are going to cover this year. he then makes a few people read chapters out loud, he thankfully doesn't pick on me. the Freak girl keeps trying to get Nathan to talk to her, what is his deal? is she his girlfriend? Paperboy is also in this class and is writing everything my dad says down as if it's important. The bell is about to go and end when Charlie suddenly sets us homework. I repeat Charlie sets us homework on our first day of school! Who even does that! what kind of monster sets homework on the first day of school! I give Nathan a look as if to say are you kidding me? he rolls his eyes too. What happened to fun teacher? When we leave the class I hear from my fellow students that they are annoyed about the homework too.

“Hey what have you got next?” Caspain asks me worriedly when we are in the corridor, I look at him. he had been downing water pretty much the whole day and now he looks thirsty again.

“If you need to go, go I will be fine,” I assure him. Knowing from my books years ago roughly how long a mer can cope being out of water in the heat. Caspian weakly gives me a look that says sorry, but he doesn't need more of a kick out as he turns and runs off down the corridor in the opposite way that I have to go. I decide to go to the library for my study hall and find myself following the paperboy.

When I get to the library I start to work on my English homework, sat alone at a desk. But I know I can cope with this. When study hall finishes I go to lunch by myself, grabbing my lunch from my locker.

“Hey, babe.” A guy says leaning on the locker next to me.

“What's your name sweetness?” he asks me, I ignore him.

“Oi babe I was talking to you,” he tells me getting way to close to my personal space.

“Sorry, you called me sweet believe me you weren’t talking to me,” I tell him. He chuckles.

“Oh, sour I like it.” He tells me getting in my comfort zone.

“Back up,” I tell him firmly, he actually does.

“Sorry, babe I’m just over friendly.” He informs me with what is meant to be an innocent smile.

“Ben leave the girl alone you don’t know where she’s been.” A girl says, she had dyed red pixie cut hair. She is wearing the same band top Vinnie had been wearing earlier.

“Sorry he’s just well hes just Ben,” she informs me smiling at me like we have shared an inside joke.

“Perfect way to describe him.” I have to laugh.

“I’m Megan.” She tells me smiling at me like we've been friends for years. She isn't my normal type of friend though thats for sure.

“Sophia,” I tell her, but I try to be friendly. She's the first girl whos been nice to me all day, without trying to get close to Caspian.

“So you’re related to that guy who came to school naked?” She asks me, okay maybe she was trying to be my friend because of Caspian. I didn’t know how to respond to her question, I couldn’t pick up her feelings much I knew she was actually trying to be friendly with me and it surprised me. Especially when I knew her deepest secret, something she was holding close to her and it worried me. I decide I want to be her friend.

“You can’t choose your family,” I tell her, but she knows that.

“Don’t I know it,” she mumbles. That was when my dad walks past talking to another teacher on their way to what I assume is the staff room.

“Don’t I really know it,” I mumble.

“So where’s your hot friend disappeared to?” She asks me.

“He had to run home for a bit,” I admit truthfully. He had to go swimming.

“Then wanna eat lunch with us, we don’t bite. Well except Ben.” She tells me I laugh.

“Yeah sounds fun,” I say. We go through to the Cafeteria, Megan leads me to a table, I would never have dreamed of even stepping near at my last school. but I sit next to her. for the first time in a while not feeling like I have to play a part. The Paperboy is sat at the table when we arrive.

“Oi Des.” She says grinning at the paperboy, I look at him closer, he just looks like any normal high school kid, slightly messy dishwasher blonde hair. wearing jeans and a hoody he has huge headphones on but Megan pulls them off.

“Sophia Des, Des Sophia,” Megan says.

“Hey,” I say as a hello.

“Hey, guys why are you inviting the enemy to join us,” he questions.

“The enemy?” I question him, omg witches haven't been enemies with anyone for centuries.

“Yeah I saw you with Nathan Williams.” He says. I burst out laughing I can’t help it, he glares at me more. wait the reason he hates me is because of Nathan?

“Wait your friends with Nathan Williams?” Megan asks me like I have betrayed her.

“Believe me Nathan and I aren’t friends,” I say truthfully.

“Which is why the last four times I've seen you, you’ve been with that jerk and hes watching you right now,” Des says rolling his eyes.

“That’s why Nathan a guy who would stab his best friend in the back to get what he wants, gave you a ride to school today and took you for coffee yesterday morning,” he says. I wave my finger I am pissed and Des was just opening his coke. It explodes all over him.

“Fuck.” He swears. I need to calm my anger before I do something worse. I grab my bag and walk out of the cafeteria. I go into the hall.

“What a freak she can’t even make friends with freaks.” I hear Freak girl say as I walk past her and Nathan. I've been popular since kindergarten, everyone wanted to sit with me growing up. Guys were constantly asking me out even though they knew I was taken. I manage to get to the girl's bathroom before my magic overtakes me and I do something stupid. I calm myself down. Reminding myself that it's just one bad day. When I'm calm I sit and eat my lunch on the toilet. It is not my finest hour. I look at my timetable and my next lesson is Gym. oh great, could this day get any worse? I go along to the gym and am there early. I go into the changing room and get changed before anyone comes in. When the girls start to come in I notice Megan. She is going into the toilets to change. I know why but I didn’t know if it was my place to tell anyone. I want to be there for her, which for me is something big. But I know I have kind of lost that chance already.

“Watch where you’re looking, Lesbian.” Freak girl calls as I look around. I am starting to get the feeling I have made an enemy without doing anything. I go into the gym and am one of the first girls out there. But there are a few guys including Nathan and Toliet guy, Des and Ben out already. Where the hell has Caspian got to. Did he need this long a swim? Nathan comes up behind me.

“You alright?” he questions me quietly.

“When will today be over?” I question.

“After 2 hours of gym.” He tells me.

“Want a lift home?” he asks.

“No thanks,” I tell him.

“Suit yourself.” He tells me and walks off towards the toilet guy. Des sends me evils. I sink onto the floor. We get assigned a lesson of dodgeball. Now I find that the secret of dodgeball is to get hit first, so you don’t have to play. I succeed in that. Freak girl throw the ball I could have dodged it but I couldn’t be bothered. I then sit on the bench and watch the rest of the game. Megan gets out quickly too, but she went and sat with a girl as far away from me as could get. It shouldn't have hurt but it did. Eventually, gym was over and I go back to my locker and grab my stuff change then go and walk home, all alone. I need time to myself, not that I haven't been by myself all afternoon.

When I finally get back to Charlie's home I find Blake and Justin outside on the drive playing basketball. haven't they gone back yet?

“How was school?” Justin asks me, sinking the ball into his basket as he asks.

“Oh you know it was school.” I shrug, going to walk past them.

“That bad, hey why didn’t Nathan give you a lift home?” Justin asks me looking annoyed.

“I told him not to worry.” I shrug.

“Go put your stuff down and come on, we can give Mom and Mr. D a night off as its normally their date night. We can go have dinner out and you can tell us all about school.” Justin says way to encouragingly.

“Do I have a choice?” I ask.

“Not really no,” Justin informs me. I give up with Justin and Blake. I go and put my stuff in the house. I write Charlie a letter.

Gone out with Justin for dinner, apparently its normally your date night so go have date night. we can talk tonight I swear I will talk to you tonight and not run off. Also, I need to say this because you need to know it. Some teachers are evil. Homework on the first day of school. EVIL.

I leave the note on the table and go outside. Justin and Blake are still playing basketball.

“Join us?” Blake asks me throwing me the ball. I do join them, I actually have a laugh which surprises me and feels like the first time in agers. Des bikes past us. Blake stops before he makes his pass and watches him go with me practically in his arms as he blocks me. Blake didn’t seem to want to let me go until Des was out of his sight.

“What's the deal with that guy?” I ask.

“Don’t worry Soph just stay away from him,” Justin tells me glaring at Des's back. Charlie arrives home then and we all watch him pull in the drive.

“Hello, kids good day?” Charlie asks getting out his car.

“Yeah all cool Mr. D.” Justin tells him.

“Sophia can I talk to you?” Charlie asks me, indicating the house. I nod and follow him inside. The moment the front door is shut he starts with his questions.

“How was your day?” he looks at me like he really wants the answer.

“Alright.” I lie.

“Your aunt left your cousin here to look after you? I didn't even realize she had a kid,” he questions me.

“No hes not related to me,” I admit.

“What?” Charlie questions me, how can he make one word sound like he's making accusations?

“Hes a merman not a witch, interspecies relationships are still kind of frowned upon so believe me that would never happen.” I shrug. Charlie takes a deep breath and looks like he's trying to keep his calm.

“Sophronia please don’t,” he tells me, putting his hands up as if to ward me away from him.

“What Charles don’t what?” I ask him.

“Think you can lie to me,” Charlie tells me firmly.

“I ain't lying,” I say, my hands clenched in fists.

“Then it's just a bit of a coincidence, that after 17 years you and someone else with the same last name turns up.” he snaps at me.

“if your aunt arranged someone from your family here, I won't be mad,” Charles tells me holding his hand up in a peacemaking gesture.

“What's the point of even trying with you. you never believe me anyway.” I say realising that Charlie will always blame me if anything goes wrong. he won't listen to me.

“Sophronia.” He says, why the fuck is he full naming me?

“Sophronia.” He yells at me as I slam the front door in his face. Justin and Blake are still playing outside.

“Sophronia?” Justin asks a raised eyebrow.

“Don’t even dare, I don't like my name,” I tell him.

“Ah now we get the reason why you can’t work out if you are Sophia or Sophie,” Justin says with a grin, why can't he take anything seriously?

“Go talk to him,” Blake tells me putting his hands on my shoulders, to stop me from running off.

“Sophia,” Charles says from the front door, he's now opened. I look up at him, ready to yell at him, tell him how much I hate school here. that’s when a car turns from the road and drive towards us. A lady gets out, parking so she's in the way of our basketball game. I recognize her as she gets out of the car.

“Hello, you must be Sophia.” She says with a smile at me when she has fully got out.

“Yeah, nice to meet you.” I lie.

“Nice to meet you too sweety. Everything alright?” she asks taking in the scene, obviously seeing the anger on my dads face.

“Yeah Justin and I were just about to take Sophie out to eat, we are just waiting on Nathan. why don’t you and Mr. D go out, it is your date night.” Blake says.

“Blake I don’t think.” Sarah starts giving my dad a worried look.

“Why don’t we all go out?” I suggest surprising myself as much as everyone with me. Sarah gives Charlie a look like she doesn’t know what to do.

“That sounds a great idea,” Justin says with his trademark smile.

“What do you think Mom, Mr. D?” Justin questions.

“It's not every day you can convince all the kids to come to a meal and I bet it's going to be rare” Blake tells them.

“Why does this feel like a trap?” I hear Justin and Nathans mom mumble.

“We will meet you there as we wont all fit in a car. Come on Sophia we will drive you and play some foosball. While we wait.” Justin says, grabbing my shoulder and kind of indicating me towards Blakes truck.

“Sounds good,” I say.

“Arent you two changing first?” Justin's mom questions.

“Na.” they both say shrugging, yuck sweaty guys.

“See you in a bit we will get a table,” Justin says, we practically run to Blakes truck and jump in then. slamming our doors shut on the confused parents.

When we are driving out the road I have to point out.

“We never actually said what restaurant.”

“With foosball, they both will know we've gone Lois,” Blake informs me like this is obvious, yeah to them not to me.

“What was that fight about?” Justin asks me, turning in his seat to look at me.

“My cousin,” I mumble, deciding I will have to lie and claim he is my family after all.

“What about your cousin?” Justin asks confused.

“My uncle has kind of sent him here to make sure I'm okay. I didn’t know and well Charlie seems to think I did.” I shrug.

“But you didn’t?” Blake questions me.

“Not until he covered my eyes in the hallway at school today. If I knew my cousin was here who has a car, I would be in Texas by now.” I mumble.

“Did you say that to Mr. D?” Justin asks me.

“No, I just said what's the point of even trying when he never listens to me anyway.” I shrug.

“He ain't making it easier on either of you is he?” Justin sighs, looking at me seriously, he takes in my pale hands as I grab the suicide handle for my life.

“He seems to not have a clue, but I thought you two said he was the fun teacher. What kind of evil teacher sets homework on the first day of school?” I question them.

“Someone must of pissed him off.” Justin laughs.

“Think it might be you?” Justin teases me.

“the class is going to hate me if he sets them homework everytime we have a small disagreement. I think if I say something is blue he would claim it was green.” I mumble. Justin laughs.

“Sophie what did you and your mother do when you had a fight?” Blake questions me.

“Let's just say my music player went a hell of a lot louder and I have a mom's pissed me off playlist,” I say, remembering arguments with my mom over the years.

“So 'we are never getting back together' is on what playlist?” Justin laughs.

“Jacobs pissed me off mix,” I admit.

“Jacob was who?” Justin questions me.

“My boyfriend. I mean well ex now.” I quickly say after saying boyfriend looking out the window wondering if there was anything I could do to turn back time.

“The one that was in the pictures of you? with his arm wrapped around you?” Blake questions me.

“Kind of weird you all googled me,” I mumble.

“Yeah the guy in the pictures,” I say weakly.

“Do you miss him?” Justin asks me worriedly.

“At school today yeah. at my old school it was easy, I knew the moment I went down the corridor I would have someone. If Tiff wasn’t attached to my hip I would see Vinnie or Jacob. Or one of the squad. I never had to work out where to sit because someone would have actually saved a chair for me and want me to sit next to them. I would never have to eat in the toilet alone.” I admit.

“Wait you ate in the toilet alone? Why the hell didn’t you just go up to someone and sit next to them?” Blake questions me like he thinks I'm stupid.

“I did go to a table with a group. Then one of them said I was friends with Nathan and they all called me the enemy and shit.” I mumble. Justin laughs.

“It isn’t funny they really did,” I tell him. Justin laughs more.

“Did you tell them you weren’t friends?” Blake suggests.

“Yeah, they said Nathan isn’t the kind of guy who would give someone a lift to school so I was lying,” I say. Justin laughs even more.

"My brother isn't that bad." Justin laughs.

“on top of that two girls that seem popular kept calling me a Freak all day from the moment I got out of Nathans car,” I inform them. Justin and Blake laugh even more now.

“So let me get this right, the reason you made no friends today is Nathans fault?” Blake questions me, i can tell he's smiling I can see his smile in his mirrors.

“Yeah, yeah it is,” I tell them

“Yet we thought you turning up in Mr. Ds car would ruin your chance.” Justin laughs. I realize they aren’t laughing at me.

“I think that would have been better, maybe social suicide but not them all being bitchy about Nathan,” I mumble. They laugh more. We climb out the truck in a carpark and Nathans car is already here.

“Blake, did you ever have to park a car when you were doing lessons?” I ask seriously.

“What's wrong with my parking?” Blake questions me.

“What's right with it.” both me and Justin say at the same time.

“Jynx you owe me a soda.” We both say at the same time, although Justin is a bit faster.

“Justin won that,” Blake says as if it's his job to referee us,

“What soda do you want?” I ask as we walk into the restaurant I notice Nathan wave at us from a table and we all head over. Justin and Blake climb on the bench opposite Nathan so I have no choice but to sit next to him.

“So what's this about?” Nathan asks us.

“This is about your mom and Mr. D still having date night so we all get breaks from each other and they're not constantly on our backs,” Blake says. I haven't quite worked out how Blake got dragged into my new family drama.

“What about we say give them 7 days a week?” I suggest.

“Nice try but I don’t think either of them will go for that,” Justin tells me smiling at me.

“eww, what will happen will Mr. D start sleeping round ours rather than mom going his?” Nathan questions his big brother.

“EWWW, Nathan.” We all say at the same time. Nathan shrugs.

“You were all thinking it.” He tells us worry over his face. how is this new situation going to work out for us?

“No we weren't but now we can't stop.” Justin groans.

“They're not married yet.” I point out.

“So they can't have sex?” Nathan questions me. lots of images I don’t want in my head that I knew have actually happened come to my head. Thanks, Nathan thanks a bunch my thought was sarcastic by the way.

“eww” I groan

“you're not exactly innocent yourself are you, Sophia,” Nathan says, actually he would be surprised. I look away from him. I'm not embarrassed that I'm a virgin, but they are all assuming I've done the deed and I really don't want that conversation with them. I don't know them!

“So what are we going to say? go on your date nights but don’t have sex when we are in the house?” Justin questions.

“you could always move out,” Nathan suggests to his brother.

“Oh and you could put up with them having sex at yours? We all deal with that?” I ask.

“No they can have sex at his.”

“And I can go back to Texas. Agreed, we all agree on that?” I ask.

“I don’t think they will agree on that.” Justin tells me. I go to respond but Nathan says

“And they are finally here.” I look over at the direction of the door and Charlie and Sarah are indeed here and headed towards us, they have both got changed.

“Have you ordered kids?” Charlie asks us, looking at the four of us as if he's torn. me he can lay into, but he seems to like his girlfriend's kids.

“Not yet just drinks,” Justin says pointing at our sodas. Charlie picks up the menu so did the boy's mom.

“So have you all decided what you want to eat?” There mom questions picking up the menu.

“We haven’t looked yet,” Blake admits chucking us all a menu. I look yum.

“Pizza,” Nathan says putting his menu down.

“Seafood Lasagna,” Blake says putting his menu down after obviously finding his favorite.

“Beef and Tortelloni,” Justin says after a long time of looking at the menu.

“I think I will have same as Justin.” Justin's mom said putting her menu down. Charlie is waiting on me I realise.

“What's better?” I ask calmly.

“Linguine di Mare or seafood Lasagna or chicken and shrimp carbonara?” I ask interested.

“I think the lasagna personally, but all are great,” Blake informs me, from over his menu.

“I will have the seafood lasagna then,” I say shrugging.

“I'm going to have the chicken and shrimp carbonara today I think.” Charlie decides.

“Any appetizers?” Charlie us all.

“meatball stuffed pizza.” The boys all say together, it must be nice.

“Fried mozzarella,” I say.

“Calamari.” Justin's mom says, giving my dad a smile from where she sits next to him. We all order then though as the waiter comes over.

“So how was school your first day back?” Charlie asks after a while.

“Alright except one evil teacher gave us homework on the first day,” Nathan informs Charlie.

“I know right who even does that?” I say to Nathan.

“Although it’s the same teacher who gives a lot of pop quizzes on a Tuesday so watch out,” Nathan informs me.

“Why a Tuesday?” I question confused.

“I don’t actually know it's like all the teachers seem to have decided Tuesday is the unofficial pop quiz day,” Nathan tells me.

“then surely that means you plan for a pop quiz on a Tuesday.” I point out. “But there's the catch when he knows we've studied he doesn’t give us one,” Nathan informs me.

“Then always study?” Charlie suggested.

“Na.” Nathan, Blake, Justin and I say at the same time.

“I try to help them, Sarah,” Charlie says to Justin's and Nathans mom.

“So except for that evil teacher any problems?” Charlie asks us.

“Not really no,” Nathan tells him.

“Not really,” I mumble and shrug it off.

“That’s really good,” Charlie says looking relieved. I break a breadstick in half.

“And you're not behind or anything in any of your subjects are you Sophia?” Charlie questions me worried.

“Not that I would be able to tell yet, it was the first day,” I tell him shrugging.

“So are you going to try out for the cheerleading squad this year?” Charlie seems to be trying to encourage me, what is going on with him.

“No, I'm not,” I tell him, haven't we already talked about this! it shows he never listens.

“I know you feel it’s a betrail or something like that to your squad but.” Charlie starts.

“Not just that, my physico said not to do to much on that shoulder for a while. it would possibly be best if I don’t.” I tell him, Yeah I decide to use that as an excuse, not that it doesn't hurt a lot randomly.

“So does that mean the 5 am Yogas going to stop? because you're so annoying.” Nathan moans.

“Am I loud?” I ask him confused, I didn’t realize I even made a sound.

“I didn’t realise you were out there.” Justin shrugs.

“Yeah but you can sleep through anything.” Nathan moans.

“I can do my run then my yoga.” I shrug.

“At 5 am you're not going for a run,” Charlie tells me firmly.

“Then Nathan has to just wear headphones.” I shrug trying to downplay how I want to kick off about him kind of telling me what I can and can't do.

“Can you not start at 6?” Charlie questions me.

“Then how would I fit my run in and getting ready for school?” I question.

“Maybe do your yoga in the house?” Charlie suggests.

“I can try that,” I say, kind of feeling ganged up on.

“I'm not sure I like you going running alone anyway especially at that time of the morning,” Charlie says. I take a deep breath ready to defend my run and tell him how it's strange he suddenly thinks all these things aren't right when he hasn't bothered for so many years!

“Charlie if Sophia has always done a run in the morning alone it would be a lot to expect her to suddenly change her routine,” Sarah tells him. Ha, I like you a bit more.

“That being said.” She says worry over her face.

“Wouldn’t you feel more comfortable running with someone?” she asks me.

“Not really I like to put music in and pretend no one else exists,” I say shrugging. Charlie goe's to interrupt.

“Who ordered the.” The waiter asks coming over with food! Yay saved by the appetizers! We all have food.

“have you thought about trying out for the track?” Sarah questions me, almost encouragingly.

“I'm thinking about it, because not only will track be good to run but it also gets me out of gym class and I don’t think I can deal with another game of dodgeball,” I say.

“you didn’t actually even try to dodge the ball you just stood there,” Nathan informs me and the whole table.

“the quicker you get out at dodgeball the less you have to play dodgeball,” I tell him, he shakes his head but he's smiling.

“But god your girlfriend can throw a ball,” I mumble.

“She ain't my girlfriend,” Nathan says way too loudly.

“Does she know that?” I ask him, she had hung off him all day!

“I told you, Sophia, that if you wanted to be popular you had to make friends with her,” Nathan informs me.

“you’re the one who called her a freak.” He tells me rolling his eyes at me.

“No, she walked into me and called me a freak I just backchatted,” I inform him.

“Who?” Charlie questions sounding worried.

“Sophia if you're having problems.” Charlie starts.

“No problems Charles just a disagreement I will sort it out if I need to,” I assure him.

“Sophia.” Charlie starts firmly. But Sarah gives him a look and he calms himself down.

“So Sophia what are you thinking about college?” Sarah asks me interested, why had my Dad never thought to ask me my plans for next year?

“Hopefully Pre-med next year,” I say shrugging. Charlie looks at me like I've just said aliens have invaded.

“Pre-med?” he questions me like really? Doe's he really not think I'm smart?

“Is that a good idea?” he questions me.

“Really is Pre-med a good idea?” I ask him.

“That sounds amazing Sophia,” Sarah says looking at Charlie like what's wrong?

“It does but it’s a lot of work Sophia, I thought, I don’t know what with your mom being a college professor?” Charlie starts.

“You know what they say Charles those who can't do teach,” I tell him.

“Excuse me I will be right back,” I say standing up. I slip out of the booth and make my way quickly to the ladies room. I take a few deep breaths and wash my hands, I did actually use the toilet whilst I was in there. When I am calm enough I go back to the table. When I get back dinner has been served. I sit back next to Nathan and start eating my dinner.

“So you're going away for the weekend?” Sarah asks me actually sounding interested.

“Yeah, my friend Abes picking me up and we are going to crash a few days at my friends Vinnie's college campus,” I say shrugging.

“Where are you staying?” Charlie questions me.

“I don’t know, Abe said something about camping. We ain't been camping since the beginning of the summer and it will soon be too cold too.” I tell him.

“We might just book a motel or something, I'm leaving it up to him. or I might stay on Vinnie's floor at campus and Abe will go to the motel alone. Auntie Beaty said whatever we decide to do just charge it to the card.” I shrug.

“Your aunts fine with you going all that way with.” Charlie starts to question me.

“I've known Abe and Vinnie since I was three. Auntie Beaty trusts us.” I tell him.

“I used to go away camping all the time with my friends and boyfriend. We used to go for days and not even bother checking in.” I say.

“Sometimes we would even go abroad and camp,” I say shrugging, missing my mom so much, nights camped outside in our own backyard looking up at the stars.

“You're not going abroad this weekend,” Charlie says firmly.

“No Aunty Beaty took my passport with her.” I mumble. I get kicked under the table, I look around for the guilty party and Justin just looks too innocent so I kick him. He holds up his hands slightly in mock peace, then points at Blake whos next to him. Who shrugs at me a smirk on the corner of his lips. so I kick him too. he shrugs again.

“She took your passport?” Charlie questions me.

“Yes,” I mumble.

“When does she plan to come to visit?” Charlie asks me.

“For Christmas, I think,” I say lying about when she will be visiting she would visit a few days before then as we don’t celebrate Christmas we celebrate the solstice a few days beforehand, it is also the day I have to have decided what I am going to do my private study on.

“I wish she had told me,” Charlie says.

“Well, why don’t you two talk about it. you two are good at arranging things and not consulting anyone else on their opinions,” I say. Again I'm kicked. Blake points at Justin that time when I kick him.

“Sophia I am just trying to do what I think is best,” Charlie says like he is a step of giving up.

“What you think is best not what is.” I snap at him I get kicked by three legs that time. I take a deep breath calming myself down before my magic blows something up in the restaurant.

“So what would you have preferred Sophia moving to England this year and not ever graduating high school so you couldn’t do your pre-med next year?” Charlie questions me, making it sound like I'm the one being difficult.

“How about.” I get kicked under the table before I can say any more, which is possibly a good thing.

“Maybe you should talk to Aunty Beaty,” I mumble.

“Yeah, I will don’t worry,” Charlie says looking cross. I look at Blake and mouth

‘stop I get it.’ as he kicks me again, but this time gentle.

“So Mom Mr. D,” Justin says everyone looks at him, I take a mouthful of my meal, trying to stop myself from yelling the things in my head at Charlie.

“We were discussing your relationship,” Justin says. Nathan and I both kick Justin at the same time. This meal is involving a lot of physical violence under the table.

“What about it Justin Martin Williams?” Sarah questions firmly, giving her son a look that I know from my own mother.

“Well we were discussing your date nights,” Justin says.

“What about them?” Charlie asks us looking from one of us to the other, his face softens on Justin and Nathan, part of me is jealous, they are the kids he really wants. Normal human kids.

“Why don’t you have them 7 nights a fucking week,” I mumble, hating the looks he's giving the boys like he cares a lot about how they feel. I get kicked.

“We thought maybe you should have them 3 nights a week and those nights we will all go do something,” Blake suggests heading us all off.

“In other words, the 4 of you want to be rid of us 3 nights a week?” Charlie questions looking straight at me, like hes blaming me for this idea.

“As I told you mom and I used to have an open door policy as long as I was home by 10 pm and my grades never fell below a B she trusted me,” I say.

“Didn’t she see your boyfriend.” Nathan mumbles I kick him.

“We will think about it kids,” Sarah says. I put my finger up slightly because I have a slight cramp in it, I honestly wasn't going to use my magic.

“Sophia.” Charlie snaps firmly.

“I'm going to get a refill anyone else want one?” I ask downing the last of my soda. hating Charlie's lack of trust of me.

“I do I'll come with you,” Nathan says.

“Cherry Cola,” Blake tells us handing me his empty cup.

“Same,” Justin says pushing his cup to Nathan. I walk away from the table with Nathan, I need a moment away from Charlie.

“What the hell did I even do to get Sophia then?” I mumble to Nathan as I fill up my cup.

“Pass.” Nathan sighs filling his own with the cherry cola.

“So you and your boyfriend just went away camping all the time and your mom was alright with that?” he questions me.

“My mom was fully aware that I am sensible.” I shrug. Nathan laughs.

“Sensible?” he questions me, still laughing, it's actually nice to see him laugh.

“I can be sensible,” I say in my defense.

“Prove it,” Nathan says.

“How?” I ask as he starts to fill Justin's glass.

“Go the rest of this meal without starting a fight?” Nathan suggests shrugging.

“Deal,” I say looking at Charlie as he laughs at something Justin's obviously said, I take him in holding Sarah's hand under the table. Why did he want me here? I'm just going to get in the way.

“If I do you owe me $20,” I mumble realizing I can't have nothing for this.

“And if you fight you owe me $20.” He tells me, we shake on it then we take the drinks back to the table.

“So Sophia what is your favorite book?” Sarah asks me when I sit down.

“Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein but modern Harry Potter and a few books I quite like on my kindle. I don’t really claim I have a favorite, I have a favorite for the mood I’m in that day.” I say truthfully. She talks about books with me for a few minutes, Charlie gets involved. Safe conversation again. Although the boys look out of there element. Dinner finally is finished.

“Desert kids?” Sarah asks us. We all decide yeah.

“What is your favorite movie?” Sarah asks me, almost like she is trying to buffer between Charlie and me.

“It really depends on my mood. I can’t really sit still long enough to watch a whole film.” I say truthfully.

“You don’t say,” Nathan grumbles, I think I had jogged him about a million times as I want to run away from this.

“Did you and your mom have many sat down meals?” Charlie questions me. I take a deep breath, why did he keep having to do that? make it sound like he thinks Mom raised me wrong.

“No, we used to have our meals hanging upside down from the ceiling,” I say deadly serious my finger slightly twitching. I get kicked.

“Sophia,” Charlie snaps firmly.

“Charles?” I ask as a question.

“Want to go play a game of foosball,” Blake asks very suddenly, getting to his feet.

“Yeah sounds good,” I say and quickly go off with him. The boys all come.

“I've never seen him like that, except when someone in class really pissed him off and hes trying to be cool,” Nathan says indicating Charlie.

“We just rub each other the wrong way.” I shrug, knowing its true.

“I don’t think moms seen this side of him,” Justin says worriedly. I sigh I look at them where they were obviously having a bit of a disagreement. I wave my finger and she instantly calms down blinking seeming not to remember what she was about to say. Charlie turns in his seat and glares at me sending me daggers.

“I can't do right for doing wrong with this man,” I groan.

“Yeah I get you being mad at him, but I don’t get him being mad at you,” Blake says like he's confused.

“Like pre-med that’s amazing Sophia,” Blake tells me encouragingly.

“Thanks,” I say and I mean it.

“Maybe we should end this meal. I don’t think Charlie and I should come out together again with you lot until we can be civil with each other.” I mumble.

“Maybe your right,” Justin says watching Charlie and his mom. They kiss.

“Eww.” All four of us say together.

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