The Boyfriend Games

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25- First Day Back

Thanksgiving Break was over way too fast. Before I knew it, I opened my eyes on Monday morning and had to go back to school. I groaned and tried to convince myself that going to school was better than staying home, not getting an education or job and becoming homeless. It was a close call, but I chose school and got out of bed. I forced myself to cheer up (it was a foreign action) and ate breakfast with my mom.

She looked at me as I took a bite of food. “So, got any hot dates?” I quickly swallowed before she made me gag.

“I sure hope not,” I told her with wide eyes.

“Oh come on, Thera. Have a little fun.”

I finished off my food and went to throw away the plate. “Your definition of fun and my definition must be two completely different things. I love you mom, I do, but no thanks.” I went to walk away.

“Wait,” she added, “let me drive you to school, I have some errands to run while you’re there.”

I furrowed my eyebrows. “Don’t you have to go to work?”

“Neh, I got today off. Your dad couldn’t get the whole day off, but he’s taking off during lunch and leaving for the rest of the day.”

“Oh okay,” I said plainly. “Well, have fun today.”

“Grocery shopping,” she said waving her hands. “Oh no, too much fun for me to handle.” See? I get my sarcastic side honestly, it just came natural. I slung my bag over my shoulder. Not too long before another break, I reminded myself. Hang in there.

I think I need to stop with the self talks. I may be going crazy.

Going? Ha! I laughed internally at myself. We’ve already been gone!

Arriving at school, I waved goodbye to my mother and left the car fast, trying to escape the odd mood I was quickly falling into. I looked around to see if anyone I knew was out here at the front of the school but I saw no one, so I continued on to my locker. I caught someone’s eye in the hallway and he flipped his golden object in his hands. His green eyes seemed to be laughing at me. It was the rude guy from a few days ago.

Why I outta go and teach him some manners, I thought, but after the next blink, he was gone. Was he just a part of my imagination? I turned around to look back at the empty hallway, bewildered. I didn’t register hearing the classroom door open until I ran into someone and sent all of the books and papers in her hands flying. Not again.

“I’m so sorry!” she squeaked. Falling to the floor she began to try and pick up all of her things before anyone could step on them.

“Whoa, hold on now. It’s not your fault.” I bent down and helped her pick up the loose pieces of paper. I noticed a drawing on one of different guys, guys I happened to know. I held it closer.

“This is impeccable, its looks just like Duke, and Dexter, and Rhett, and Graham, and Trevor, and—” she snatched it from me with a terrified expression on her face.

“P-please don’t,” she whimpered. I was taken aback. Did I do something to hurt her?

“I’m not going to hurt you, or even make fun of you. You have a talent, a real gift. Has anyone else seen these drawings?” She shook her head no.

“Are you in the Games?” She nodded. “Well I am too, and these drawings look just like the guys that they’re supposed to be.

“They’re just sketches,” she said in a small voice.

I smiled. “Well then I would love to see them in final product. What’s your name?”

“Christie,” she told me. “My twin is also in it, you may know her. She’s much more confident than me.” I assumed when she said it, she was referring to The Boyfriend Games.

“What’s her name?” She was so scared looking, like too many people had wronged her, that I felt as if I were talking to a wounded animal, trying to get them to see that I meant no harm.

“Andi.” I thought back to the list I made in the journal at home. I had never met neither Christie nor Andi, but I briefly remember writing their names in the box on the bottom.

“Well, here’s the rest of your stuff.” I handed her the papers and book that I had picked up and she said a meek, “Thank you,” before rushing away. It appeared that she was quite introverted and shy, like a certain boy in these Games I remembered. I mentally started clapping. Another pairing! Trevor, the shy guy would probably not be so intimidated around someone who was also shy. At least, I hoped it wouldn’t backfire to where neither talked to each other at all, but I think Christie and Trevor would make a nice little couple.

I was taking my job quite seriously (not really, but it’s fun to pretend, right?). The next time I see either of them I’ll have to be sure to start talking up the other so that they might realize how great of a matchmaker I was... or um, find ‘their true love.’ That works too.

I was at lunch minding my own business when he came striding in and sat down next to me. Did everyone have this same lunch period? Sheesh.

“Hey babe, wanna go on another date with me tonight?” He asked with such cocky confidence that it almost sounded like a statement instead of a question. My blood heated up a few degrees and not in a good way. Without even looking up at him I sighed and my lip curled in annoyance.

“No. Now leave before you get smacked.” I held up the food I had in front of his face to show him.

“Are you threatening me with a stick of cheese?” Giovanni asked stupefied.

“I will hit you with it,” I confirmed. “And then I’ll have to use gloves to open the wrapper because it’ll be smothered in stupid.”

He smiled like he won. “So that’s a yes?” I rolled my eyes.

“You wouldn’t know an insult if it hit you smack dab in the face.” To prove my point, I whacked him with the stick of cheese. In the face. “The answer is no.”

This time he turned to Amanda and Hope. “I thought you’d said they can’t turn down an offered date. I thought it was a rule.” Hope patted his shoulder as Amanda shook her head at him like he was a sad child.

“Thera defies all rules, honey.” It’s about time they realized that. Giovanni huffed and left the cafeteria.

“And good riddance,” I said aloud, without meaning to. But what did it matter, if it was the truth?

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