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Chapter 13

Chapter 13

There's an uncomfortable silence in the room as we all wait for someone to say something.

Troy stares at me expectantly before cracking. "So, who is–"

"None of your business," I answer, cutting him off. He wants to know about AJ, no doubt. He's so transparent.

"Tut tut." He waves his finger in my face. "You didn't hear me out. You have no idea what I'm going to say."

"I can bet I do," I argue.

Who is she?

"So, who is he?" Troy, the idiot, continues to taunt me.

I stand corrected.

I roll my eyes. "How many times do I have to tell you that I'm not gay, you moron?"

"As many times as it takes for me to believe you," he responds with a snarky grin.

I swear, he's not as stupid as he makes himself out to be.

"You're the one to talk," I scoff.

"Her name is AJ Hamilton," Max takes the liberty to answer for me. "And she's smoking hot, dude."

Bell angrily clears her throat. "Ahem."

"But obviously not as hot as your sister," Max quickly adds, avoiding his girlfriend's piercing stare of fury.

"Gross!" Troy gags, turning his nose up at the idea of his sister being hot.

"No," I disagree, flipping through my law book, "she's hotter."

I really should be studying.

Bell swats me on the chest, now furious. "Screw you guys." She frowns before switching on the TV in an attempt to distract herself from the situation.

"O.M.G.! That's BroJay's car!" Troy exclaims in giddiness.

"Because it is Jay driving it," I answer casually, used to seeing him race on TV. He's making quite the name for himself.

"He's still so beautiful and magnificent," Troy says, admiring Jay and his skill.

I take the remote from Bell and switch off the TV before he can obsess over Jay any longer. Honestly, I can't believe I even knew the guy. Jay's hitting the big leagues. Those ranks are sky high.

"I'm sorry," Troy changes the subject with a not so subtle cough, "but are we all really going to ignore the literal elephant in the room?"

Bell raises both brows, just as lost as the rest of us.

"I'm talking about BroBoyBand over here," he gestures to me, smug as ever, "because you know...he's gotten ridiculously fat. I mean, he really is the elephant in the room. He's the size of an elephant."

Why do people keep saying this?!

I throw my book at his head, fed up. "Says the guy who has orange skin and yellow hair, Homer Simpson."

I wasn't going to say anything but the idiot is pressing my buttons.

Troy gasps, taking offense. "I'll have you know that this," he points to his yellow hair and orange-toned skin, "is from the The Bahamas' sun."

Bell shakes her head. "Too much fake tan, brother." She scoffs, ashamed to be related to him. "Amateur."

"This is my natural undertone!" Troy protests, refusing to admit to the truth. He's literally The Annoying Orange, except, more annoying and more orange.

"Orange is your natural undertone?" Max questions mockingly. "And yellow is your natural hair color?"

"You're all just jealous!" Troy stands up in a rage. "I have very little tolerance for stupidity!" He walks out the door, grumbling to himself. "Hard to be the smartest friend in this group."

I shake my head and take a sip from the alcohol bottle, not willing to comment further on the matter.

"Don't sit there and act all cool," Max teases. "You're a dork just like the rest of us. Accept it."

My mind is elsewhere. I'm worrying about this test, probably proving Max's point but so what. Above all, I'm actually missing AJ's presence already. I don't want to think about it but I can't stop. I feel better when she's around.

"Heart eyes?" Max notices that I've zoned out. "Somebody's in lurve," he chimes in a sing-song voice as if to get a reaction out of me.

I narrow my eyes at him. "Don't start."

Once he starts, Bell starts. Difference is, Bell doesn't stop.

"And!" Troy storms back into the room, as expected.

We all fall silent and wait to hear him out.

I sigh when he doesn't say anything. "And what?"

"And I'm horrified that none of you commented on my new kicks." He lifts up his leg and tosses his foot in my face.

I cringe and slap his foot away. "Loafers. Nice."

Typical 'rich boy' look. Not surprised.

"I prefer the term 'yoat shoes'," Troy corrects me. "I'm part of the elite yoat club now," he gloats, proud.

"Worst group of people." I groan in disapproval. "Privileged brats with their exclusive parties and trips. They think they're entitled to everything. I hate the yoat club."

Some of us actually have to work for money. The yoat club is the very definition of Troy. It's like being entrapped on a boat in the middle of the sea, surrounded by Troys. I shudder just thinking about it.

"That's exactly what someone not in the yoat club would say," Troy retorts, more arrogant than usual.

I hate it when he finds new hobbies. It's never good for anyone.

Bell, as if reading my mind, places her hand on my shoulder. "He'll be kicked out soon. I guarantee it."

Her words send her brother on a rant, almost as if she's triggered him:

"They said they wanted a lit party! I give them a lit yoat and suddenly I'm not allowed in their club anymore?! And just because the yoat was in flames! I mean, people, calm down! Why you freaking out about a little bit of fire?! If you can't handle the heat, get out of the..."

I tune him out. Instead, I place on my shades and close my eyes, pretending to listen while nodding here and there as if I care. All the while, my head is stuck on AJ. She must never meet Troy. She must never ever meet Troy.

Max clears his throat, boldly interrupting Troy – risky move on his part. "I'm sorry but is it just me that is not caring about caring about this conversation?"

No, dude, it's not just you.

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