Sugar and Spice

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Chapter 6: It's Nice To Have A Friend

(Yeah, I know that that title is actually a song. That too an awesome one by Queen TS!)

“When I introduced you to the inner circle, I meant that you are in, Penny. Don’t be a stranger now!” Ellie told me when I was looking around for a seat in the cafeteria. I smiled at her as I took a seat next to Damien.

I wouldn’t have been in the cafeteria if it were up to me. But according to the principal, I need to mingle with my peers. He went as far as assuring me that I’ll be graduating from this school.

Yeah, tell that to my parents!

I was 101% sure that my parents will make me change schools as soon as they remember that they have a daughter named Penelope. Or when they get a phone call from the school informing them about my latest adventure in destroying the school.

I wasn’t a bad girl or the rebellious kind of a kid. And I was surely not a rich snob who didn’t care about anything. At least I don’t think so. My mother and father are very busy people. And with my sister who is literally the star kid, they almost always forgot about me. Like really forgot me. They once left me alone in the house when I was twelve and went on a family vacation.

I know it’s sad but I don’t really care anymore...

“Penny, you are our friend now. You have to sit with us at lunch everyday. No matter what happens!” Jason told me. I smiled at that.

I did have friends in the past but they were all either with me because I had rich parents and a I-don’t-give-a-shit attitude. But having people call me as their friends when they didn’t know the size of my inheritance, it was new.

You don’t have a huge inheritance, Penny. Don’t forget that your sister will be getting everything from you parents!

Well, that might be true but I still have my uncle. He loves me more than he loves my sister. I was actually living with him. He had promised my parents that he’d take care of me when my parents got a call from my last school. My uncle didn’t have any kids of his own and so, he treated me like his daughter.

“Thanks for that. I will remember that from now.” I said with a mock salute before I started eating my spaghetti.

“So, Penny, tell us more about yourself.” Liam said after a few minutes. I looked up to find everyone looking at me, waiting for my response.

“There’s not much to tell. I am just another troublemaker who has been a new kid in so many schools that I have seriously lost count.” I shrugged before taking another bite of my food. I have been to many schools but this might just be the only one which actually has semi-decent food in the cafeteria.

“Why? Do your parents move a lot?” Ellie asked with a frown. I shook my head but then I stopped as I thought about it.

“I don’t really know about that. I only see my parents during holidays when the whole family gets together.” I told her, honestly. “I actually pull a lot of pranks so whenever my parents get a call from the school, they just make me shift and attend some other school.” I explained with an eye roll.

“So you live alone?” Damien asked me in a concerned voice. I turn to look at him with a smirk on my face.

“Why? Are you worried about me, pretty boy?” I ask him. He rolls his eyes before shaking his head.

“No. Actually, Ellie stays alone too. Her parents are almost always away. So I thought that your situation was kind of similar.” Damien told me. I turned to Ellie and frowned.

“Well, my parents are very busy but they make time for me and come back home whenever they can.” She told me.

“My parents don’t do that. I don’t really have a home. I’ve just been to too many places to even call any place my home.” I said in a quiet voice.

“So you are always alone?” Ellie asked me in a concerned voice. I look up and see the worried looks on all their faces. I smile a little to ease it all up.

“It’s nothing I am not used to.” I told them but my words somehow made them look even more sad and worried.

“You can come up to my place anytime you want. Actually, you know what? Just come and stay with me. The house is too big and you can even have your own room. I will have some company and you won’t be alone either.” Ellie told me in a firm voice.

“I appreciate the offer, Ellie. But I am actually living with my uncle right now. My parents were too tired of me and so my uncle stepped in and took responsibility for me.” I told her.

“That’s good.” Ellie nodded. “But you can come over to my house whenever you want. Even when my parents are home. They won’t mind. In fact, my mom will be thrilled to see another girl around.” She added making me chuckle.

“I’ll keep that in mind.” I told her.

“Why don’t we have a sleepover this Friday?” Kara suggested. Ellie’s face lit up like a Christmas tree.

“That would be beyond amazing!” She exclaimed. “I’ll text you my address, Penny. Be there!” She told me. I chuckled and saluted.

“Are you parents home?” Liam asked Ellie.

“No. That’ll make it even more amazing. We can yell till late at night.” She said in an overly excited voice.

“It’s settled then. We all are having a sleepover at Ellie’s place.” Xander said. He turned to me. “And you have to be there!” He warned me.

“Wouldn’t miss it for the world.” I replied with a smile on my face.

“What’s happening?” I asked the lady sitting outside the principal’s office. The door to the principal’s office was closed and I could hear muffled sounds of an argument.

“Oh it’s nothing. Just the usual. The usual troublemakers are getting punished while their friends defend them.” She told me with a sigh. I frowned at that.

From what I’ve heard from the people till now, it was my new friends who were the usual troublemakers. Ellie told me how she and Liam always run to save the others when they create trouble.

Is it them inside the room right now?

If it’s them, what did they do now? Do they need some help? What the hell is happening?

I barged into the room without knocking. I was too worried and I didn’t want to wait. If it was them, maybe I could help them.

As I open the door, I see Xander, the twins and Damien standing with bored expressions on their faces as they glare at the floor while Ellie and Liam looked like they were some lawyers defending their clients in front of the court.

Well, in a way they were...

They all turned to look at me. Everyone except the Principal looked surprised. They were probably wondering as to why I am here.

“Well well well.” I sang. I entered the room and shut the door behind me. I was looking straight at the middle aged principal. “If it isn’t Principal Hughes torturing poor innocent teenagers.” I sighed as I took a seat on one of the comfy couches that were placed next to the door.

Principal Hughes sighed as he sat down in his seat behind his desk. He took off his glasses and massaged his forehead. I smirked.

He looked so tired and I hadn’t even started saying anything!

“I am not torturing these teenagers. I am talking to them. I have to punish them for the crime they have committed.” Principal Hughes told me.

“If I may ask, what is the crime that you speak of?” I asked with a raised eyebrow. Principal Hughes looked at me with a tired face.

“They spray-painted the back of the school building.” He answered, making me raise both my eyebrows as I looked at the boys. Xander and the twins shrugged while Damien didn’t even look at me as he continued to glare at the floor. I turned to Ellie and Liam to see how they were glaring at their own friends.

I turned back to Principal Hughes.

“So, you are telling me that you are punishing them for doing something that they were taught in your school?” I asked Principal Hughes, trying to hide my smirk. He narrowed his eyes at me. I could feel the confused glances of the others on me but I maintained eye contact with Principal Hughes.

“What are you talking about, Penelope?” The old man asked me. I shrugged in a nonchalant manner.

“I just thought that school taught us to express ourselves. And just the other day, the art teacher told us that the best way to express ourselves was through art.” I told him. “Will you punish them for trying it out?” I asked him.

“They painted the school wall, Penelope!” The old man exclaimed.

“They made art! That’s what the art teacher said.” I replied. Principal Hughes rolled his eyes and sighed. “If I knew what they were doing, I would have joined them. That might have earned me my transfer ticket again.” I shrugged.

“What do you want me to do, Penelope?” Principal Hughes asked in a tired voice. I sat up straighter with a smirk.

Now we are getting to the point!

“Let them go. Forgive them.” I told him. He opened his mouth but I interrupted him. “Without any detention. Otherwise I would have to tell everyone that the art teacher is a huge liar and you hired that liar.” I told him in a warning tone.

He sighed as a smile threatened to break up on his face. He shook his head at me.

“Very well.” He said as he stood up and walked around his table. He stood on the other side of the table and leaned back against it. “But I am forgiving them just this once. If they repeat this, I would have to punish them.” He said. I smiled at him.

“You got it, chief!” I saluted him. He shook his head at me. Ellie and Liam smiled at me and mouthed their thank yous while Xander and the twins gave me megawatt smiles. Damien however smirked at me and nodded once in a thank you. I smiled at them as they walked to the door.

“Aren’t you coming with us?” Ellie asked me when I kept sitting in my place on the couch. I smiled at her.

“I have something to take care of. I’ll see you all tomorrow.” I told her. She hesitated for a second but then nodded and left.

Me: Hello, people!

Penny: Sorry for being so late.

Me: I was a little unwell and my best friend was going crazy and she was saying some crazy things which made zero sense... And I had two math tests!

Ellie: Anyways, thanks for waiting.

Jason: But we will keep it short since the author is still not well.

Damien: The next chapter will be up as soon as we reach a goal.

Xander: And our goal is to reach 150 COMMENTS on this chapter.

Me: I hate to do this to you all but I’ve realised that people are reading but not voting or commenting. I know that it’s your choice but as an author, I would like to see some feedback.

Liam: If you like the story, you should vote or comment. If you don’t, you can stop reading and just leave a comment or a personal message about what you didn’t like.

Mason: We appreciate the comments we have received till now. And Chapter 5: Rules of Friendship was dedicated to the person who commented and participated the most.

Penny: If you want a dedication too, VOTE, COMMENT and SHARE!

Jason: So, until next time, whenever that is, stay safe!

Me and Mason: And eat cake!

Curtains close as the author and the characters go back to crazy-topia to enjoy their football stadium sized ice-cream cake...

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