Cruel Sacrifices

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7

“Oh yeah, I sure do. Real friends that’s there not only when the going is good but remain there when the going gets tough.”

He nodded.

She went on. “What kind of music do you listen to?”

“I listen to all kinds. I’m really into rock, heavy metal, and rap mostly. I could go from Lil Wayne to Good Charlotte like that.”

“Like gangsta rap or old school?”

“Both, especially gangsta. Ya know like Tupac and Trick Daddy.”

“OK, what about LL Cool J or Hammer?”

They laughed.

“Now, you going way back before our time! What about you?”

“I like many different musicians. I like Coldplay and Maroon 5. Black-Eyed Peas, Kelly Clarkson, Aaliyah, Gwen Stefani. I’m mainly into R & B, pop, and soft rock.”

“What’s your favorite food?” he asked her.

“I don’t know. I really don’t have a favorite. I like anything that is delicious.”

“I love tacos and pizza, yum,” he rubbed his belly.

Andrea crossed her legs at the table. Lee’s eyes remained on her, his eyes darted over her legs.

“Do you live with your parents?”

“Duh, I’m a seventeen-year-old girl. I don’t have my own place yet like you!” she comments.

They snickered.

“Do you do flings?” she wanted to know.

“Nope,” he answered quickly, with an innocent look.

She only looked at him like she didn’t believe him.

He caught on. “Hey, now, not all men are like that. We’re not all sexual beasts,” he joked.

She smiled.

“Do you wanna head to the dance floor?” Lee took her hand.

“Sure, if we can squeeze through.”

They had finished their snacks, well-rested, as they glided in the center of the floor. Couples all around them danced and carried on provocatively. This feels like a date. This is wrong, Andrea thought as she wrapped her arms around Lee and he did the same to her. Tony is gonna be pissed at me! Insanely jealous, she felt very giddy with excitement.

It felt like hours passed. It was around eleven when they finally made it out of the club heading for Lee’s car. They climb in and sat there for a while. Lee slid over near Andrea and kissed her on her mouth.

“Whoa now, down boy, down!” she stopped him. As she put her hand up, he kissed it.

“I’ve been wanting to do that all night!” he grinned slyly.

She couldn’t help herself. She flung herself over the driver’s seat and kiss him back. He didn’t let her go. The embrace turned into a French kiss make-out scene.

“Baby, let’s stop for now,” she whispered.

“Oh no,” he whispered back, smooching her jaws and neck.

She slid back over to her side of the car. “Let’s, look-like I told you before I’m involved with someone else. I love him.”

“You must not love him that much or you wouldn’t be with me now, Andrea.”

He slid back over to her side and unbuttoned her blouse. Her black satin bra appeared. He looked at it. He began to place kisses around her breasts, without taking it off. He kissed her arms and chest. He picked up her hair and threw it onto her back. She placed her hands in his and gently push them away.

“Let’s not right now. Like I said, I’m dating Tony. This embrace should never have happened. I’m sorry Lee but....”

“I get it, Andrea. But I know you feel something for me. I know that I have that same feeling for you. I don’t know if it’s love but...”

“All ready,” she scoffed. “It’s getting late. Can you take me home now?”

“No!” he snapped.

“What?” she replied, instantly alarmed.

Then he laughed. “I was just kidding, Andrea. Of course.” Lee took off and dropped her at the corner of her house about fifteen minutes later.

She got out and went over to the driver’s side of the car. She touched his hand. “I’m sorry but I hope we can still be friends.”

“Sure, why not,” he looked disappointed.

“Bye,” she called as she walked to her porch.

“Yeah, see you around.” He didn’t drive off until she vanished inside her home. He sat there for a moment. Thinking, you can’t lead me on like that Andrea and walk away like nothing happened. I have a feeling we are going to be together sooner or later. Then Lee drove back to his condo in Hollingsgrove on the other side of town.

Tony and Andrea were walking around the track at school, holding hands on Monday. Andrea wore a white and green Riverdale sweatshirt, a jacket, white designer jeans and Nike sneakers. Tony wore an oversize jersey over blue jeans and Adidas shoes.

“So you wanna spend some time together later?” Tony suggested, looking into her eyes.

“Yep, that sounds straight to me,” Andrea agreed.

“I can’t believe he made that punk move the other day on the court!”

“You mean Clay? He only missed one shot, babe.”

“No, we are the best. We’ve been practicing all year long. We are among the best! We ain’t got time to be missing shots.”

“Change of subject please, can we get off of sports for a minute?”

“Yeah, what’s up? What you wanna talk about?”

“Y’all ain’t really gonna play Cody, right?”

Tony turned his head. But not quick enough before Andrea saw a twisted smirk.

“Tony!” she pleaded. “His sister Shannon is a friend of mine. I like her. She seems like a nice person, Tony. Why do you guys always wanna bully the weaker kids? Especially when they don’t have any friends. Cody is a smart kid...”

“He’s a freaking nerd. A geek, Andrea.”

“There’s a difference.”

“It’s the same thing to me.”

They saw Pete and Josh walking toward them across the pavement.

“Anyway, I got to talk with Joyce about the party she’s throwing after graduation. I’ll see you later,” Andrea replied. Taking her hand from his.

“Baby, where are you going?” Tony called.

“I just told you.”

“Do you have to do that now?” he pouted.

The other boys stopped to talk with one of the basketball players, a guy named Antonio Winston, then the three boys continued to walk toward Tony.

Andrea waved at them when she passed.

“What’s up, Andrea?” Josh called out.

“None much.” She kept on moving.

“Where you headed to, Andrea?” Pete asked her.

“To hang out with a friend.”

The four boys hooted about the upcoming game as Andrea jogged inside the high school. The second bell rang ending the lunch hour.

***

My fur hood covered half of my face. I stood off to the side, barely hidden against the trees near the school. Neither Andrea nor the boys saw me. “Whoever thought that Andrea will become one of them? She may not be there yet, but she will be. Just like the rest of her friends. I can’t stand people like Amanda and all the other bitches I came in contact with. She’s just like my mother. I might have to take care of her in the end.

"And boys, you remind me of my other no good victims. Kids who only care about themselves, they all a part of a selfish world. It’s a man’s world, a dog eats dog world. But don’t worry, you’ll get yours in the eleventh hour, I guarantee that’s a promise and I always keep my promises,” I stated quietly aloud, as the breeze blew heavily into the day.

***

“Hi, Andrea,” Joyce spoke cheerfully.

She wore her short hair braided in a ball. She wore grey pants, a grey turtleneck, windbreaker and winter fur boots. Joyce always wore very little to no makeup. She sported the nude look better than most celebrities. She was a natural beauty. She looked as good as makeup. She was dubbed as the school’s ‘cutie pie.’

“Hey, Joyce, where have you been? I’ve been looking for you since the first day back at school.”

“I was here.”

“Oh, I miss you. Man, you are one of my oldest friends.”

“I know. What’s up with Maria and Rebbie?”

“Oh, they are just chilling.”

As they spoke in the hallway, Andrea saw Shannon coming in their direction.

Shannon wore a long pleated skirt from another decade with a twist-around blouse and knee-high black boots. Her hair was in one long French braid. Andrea beckoned to her.

“Joyce, this is Shannon Robinson, my new friend. She’s new to Riverdale.”

“Oh hi, Shannon! Welcome to Riverdale,” Joyce gushed.

“Oh, thank you,” Shannon replied.

“Shannon, this is Joyce Byrd, the senior class president,” Andrea informed her.

“Nice to meet you.”

“Yeah, nice to meet you too.”

The three girls began to walk down the hallway heading for third period.

“Why don’t we hang out sometime? I can’t believe half the school year has gone by and we haven’t got together!” Joyce exclaimed.

“Yeah, I know. It’s weird isn’t it.” Andrea agreed, continuing on. “Anyway, we gotta plan for that big party at your house.”

“I’ll give you a call later on. We have to work on a theme too. What about this: The Future of Your Dreams?” Joyce suggested.

“That sounds great.”

“Yeah, that’s cool,” Shannon comment.

“I like it too but we got plenty of time to work on it. You and Tony got a date tonight?” Joyce asked her.

“Yeah, well, he wants to get together tonight. We’ll probably watch TV and make out,” Andrea laughed.

“OK, let me get to Gingham’s class. Everybody knows how that fat slob roll!” Joyce laughed, waving them on.

After the end of the day, Shannon was riding with Andrea to Andrea’s home. The sun was high in the sky with patches of clouds showing through.

It was very chilly. The wind blowing made it colder. Andrea had her heat on high. Her SiriusXM stereo was tune into a talk show. Andrea’s cell rang playing Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal.”

“Hello,” she answered while driving. She was using her hands-free device.

“Hey, what’s up, Andrea,” Lee’s voice carried through the car.

“Oh, hi, Lee.”

“What are you doing, baby.”

“I’m driving home with a friend.”

“Oh, you have time to talk?”

“Say, Lee, can I call you back later on?”

“Yeah, I guess,” he sounded disappointed.

“Who was that? That didn’t sound like Tony,” Shannon asked with curiosity.

“That was a friend,” Andrea shrugged.

Shannon waited for her to say more but she didn’t. They pulled into Andrea’s driveway. They met Maria and Rebbie there.

“So, Tony’s coming later to continue the slumber party!” Rebbie slyly replied.

“Shut up, that’s not any of your business,” Andrea said.

The other girls laughed.

“So who’s this Lee you were talking about earlier at school,” Maria asked.

Andrea rolled her eyes. “A friend, that’s all.”

“Uh-huh, a guy friend. Now, why don’t I believe that for a second,” Rebbie remarked.

“That’s you. You can believe what you want to believe.”

“I’ve seen him. The man is fine!” Maria exclaimed.

Andrea playfully pushed her.

“What, you too, going with a grown-ass man?” Rebbie questioned. “You bad girls you,” she gave both Andrea and Shannon knowing looks. “Screwing grown men, nineteen and twenty-five!”

Shannon smirked while Andrea dismissed the idea.

“I’m not screwing him,” Andrea said.

“Oh, is that so but Shannon you’re screwing yours, right?”

Shannon didn’t answer. But her smirk grew wider. The girls went inside Andrea’s house.

“No one’s home and won’t be for hours. My parents are out visiting friends and Eric is over at his girlfriend’s house,” Andrea informed them.

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