## Chapter Thirteen

I was in Calculus, and once again Blake and Jordan were bickering stupidly behind me. I almost groaned out loud. The teacher was reading the newspaper while we were all meant to be doing our work.

Of course, they weren’t.

“Please, I’m the King of cheesy pickup lines,” Jordan challenged, holding his head in the air.

Blake rolled his eyes. “You are not.”

“Oh yeah? I’ll prove it.”

“Stef,” Jordan poked me and I groaned.

“What do you want?”

“Did it hurt when you fell from Heaven?”

I rolled my eyes. “No, I died fifteen years ago just like that pickup line.”

Blake whistled. “Burn,” he laughed. “My turn.”

He cleared his throat. “Is your phone in your pocket? Cause your ass is calling me,” he threw his fist in the air. “I win.”

Jordan shook his head. “You don’t win yet.” He cracked his knuckles. “Are you Irish? Cause I-Rish you were naked,” he winked.

“So Blake complimented my butt and you wished I was naked. Why am I even your friend?” I asked myself, wondering out loud which caused them both to dramatically roll their eyes.

“If you keep rolling your eyes you might find a brain back there,” I said, licking my finger and putting it to my skin while making a ‘tss’ sound with my mouth. “I’m on fire.”

“Yeah cause you’re so hot,” Jordan said triumphantly, throwing his fist into the air and cheering himself on. “I believe I win.”

We all burst out in laughter. The teacher was either too bored to care or didn’t notice, because we got away with laughing our heads off for a good minute or so.

I shook my head at the idiots that I called my friends, before turning around and finishing my work off.

>< >< ><

When class ended, there was a short break in between periods. Just as I was putting my books away and heading to the gym, since I had forgotten my uniform, I got a call from Christen’s mum, aka my aunt.

I answered straight away. “Hey, what’s up?”

She sounded panicked; stressed. “Stephanie? Have you seen Christen lately?”

Her voice was urgent, and it made me worried. “No, sorry. Haven’t you contacted him?”

“No, not since he was staying with you. When you called me before, I tried calling him but he never called back. I haven’t talked to him since,” she said, all in one breath. She sounded worried and tired at the same time.

“God, I’m sorry. I’ll walk around after school tonight and see if I can maybe spot him, he could’ve just passed out drunk somewhere,” I reassured her, although I wasn’t so sure myself.

She breathed a sigh. “Thank you. Call me if you find him, please.”

“I will, I promise. I gotta go to gym, bye,” I said, hanging up after she said goodbye.

I walked into the gym, and students in my Gym class were starting to gather. I went to sit down on the bleachers, having forgotten my sports uniform like an idiot.

I watched as the teacher, or coach, walked in, holding netballs. His eyes scanned the gym, them stopped on the three kids who didn’t have uniform.

He scowled at us and then went over to the other kids who actually did have uniform. He explained that they would be doing drills and skills today, practicing netball skills. He ordered them to pass the netballs to one another and then shoot.

Once everything was going smoothly, he walked over to us.

“Where the hell is your uniforms? It is a requirement in this class and you might as well FAIL for not bringing it!” he yelled angrily, scowling at us. I nearly flinched at the tone of his angry voice.

“You will run laps until I am satisfied that you are fit enough to be in this class! GO!” he yelled, making us all jump up and start jogging. I was still recovering, I don’t know how well this was going to go.

When I started running around the basketball court, it seemed okay. After around a lap, I started to sweat and puff, getting tired. I could feel my face getting red with exhaustion. My muscles ached and my legs burned.

“PICK UP THE PACE ARNOLDS!” the coach yelled from across the court, causing me to unwillingly push myself even further, making me more exhausted.

I don’t know how many laps I was doing, I was just looking at my feet and willing myself to go further. My legs felt like they were on the urge of collapsing. My chest was heaving and starting to hurt with every large intake of air that I took.

Soon, everything hurt to a point of where I felt like fainting. I was wheezing, not getting enough air.

Then, I heard footsteps running. I saw Jordan appear on my left and Blake appear on my right, immediately their arms went around my waist and shoulders to help me stand up.

“Jesus Christ, Stef you look like you’re about to pass out,” Jordan said worriedly, helping me back to the bleachers. The other kids without uniform had stopped a long time ago, but I had kept running.

I couldn’t even speak. I was wheezing with every large intake of air that I took, which caused pain in my chest. Blake and Jordan supported me, since I was barely holding myself up anymore.

“Stef? Are you alright?” Blake asked, frowning with a concerned expression on his face.

“She’s definitely not alright, we need to get her to the nurse,” Jordan replied, helping Blake carry me out of the gym to the nurse’s office.

“My… chest… hurts,” I wheezed out in a mere whisper before nothing but darkness.

When I woke up, I had no idea where I was.

First off, the bed was a lot bigger than my own and smelled strange.. it smelled like deodorant or cologne.

That thought alone made me sit straight up, but I regretted it when my muscles groaned in protest and my chest contracted with pain.

“Mother f-”

“Language, Arnolds.”

I looked around. The bed was big and the covers were a deep blue colour. The walls around me were white and grey, the room itself quite modern. There were sports posters up on the walls and trophies all displayed on one shelf.

Sitting on the edge of the bed was Jordan and Blake.

“Did you kidnap me?”

“Well, technically…” Jordan started.

Blake snorted. “We just brought you here to rest.”

I raised an eyebrow. “You couldn’t have taken me to my house?”

Jordan shrugged. “We didn’t have the key, it would’ve been a bother,” he said, a hint of a lie in there somewhere.

I narrowed my eyes. “You could’ve just grabbed my keys out of my pocket. What’s the real reason you brought me here?”

Blake looked down. “We didn’t want you to wake up alone,” he said in a small voice, which sounded adorable.

I smiled warmly at them. “Thank you. So where am I?”

“This is my room,” Blake replied.

I nodded and inspected the posters a little more. I spotted jerseys pinned up on the wall, all the way back to when Blake was little. A basketball was sitting at the foot of his bed and a soccer ball was at the door.

“You really like sports, huh?” I said, still staring at the things that occupied his room.

He nodded sheepishly and scratched the back of his neck. “Yeah.”

“Well I better go,” I said, starting to try to sit up while Blake and Jordan protested.

“You worked yourself too much, you have to rest,” Jordan said, slowly pulling me back down.

I huffed. “What’s there to do here?”

Jordan grinned. “I have an idea.”

Ten minutes later, I was sitting near the top of the stairs. Blake and Jordan were nothing holding up mattresses.

“So we could be watching a movie like normal people but no, we have to ride mattresses down stairs,” I commented.

The boys shrugged. “It’s more fun.”

I rolled my eyes and watched Jordan ready himself. He put the mattress down on the edge of the stairs, cracking his knuckles afterwards.

“Watch and learn losers,” he said, jumping on the mattress as it slowly slipped off the edge and descended down the stairs.

Jordan cheered as the mattress hit the corners and twists in the staircase, eventually stopping at the end of the staircase where he crashed and ended up under the mattress.

He groaned. “That hurt, but it was awesome!” he said, dragging himself out from under the mattress. Blake and I started laughing at the whole ordeal.

“My turn!” Blake announced, putting his own mattress on the edge of the stairs and proceeding to jump on it and ride it down the stairs. He, however, crashed on the rail halfway through and groaned in pain once he hit the floor at the bottom of the stairs.

“Ouch,” I called down to them.

Blake groaned in response and Jordan grunted. They came back up the stairs.

“Maybe not my best idea,” Blake said, scratching his head. I chuckled at his comment.

“Let’s make cookies!” I suggested to them, slowly standing up despite the pains in my chest.

Blake agreed while Jordan went into the kitchen, grabbing the ingredients. Blake helped me down the stairs by simply carrying my bridal style down them.

“You know you should carry me like this all of the time. I wouldn’t have to walk anywhere,” I said.

He rolled his eyes. “I didn’t know that you could get even more lazier.”

I slapped the back of his head lightly. “Hey! I am very fit and active, thank you very much,” I pointed out.

“Yeah, and I’m Taylor Swift,” he said sarcastically.

“Really? Sign my autograph.”

“Nope, I don’t do autographs. That isn’t my style.

“I see what you did there, very clever,” I rolled my eyes.

He carried me into the kitchen where Jordan was grabbing out ingredients.

I was set down on the bench and just watched as they carried everything over to where I was.

After we had made the batter, Jordan decided to try and stick his finger in it to have a taste.

I slapped his hand away. “No tasting. Especially with your boy germs.”

“What boy germs? These germs?” Jordan grinned, opening his arms and coming towards me. I tried to shuffle back to get away.

“No! The horror! The horror!” I yelled as he hugged me tightly. “Ewww boy germs.”

He laughed and got off me. I narrowed my eyes at him, slowly inching my hand towards the bowl of cookie batter.

“You shouldn’t have done that!” I declared, filling my hand with the batter and squishing it right on top of his head.

I think I just declared war.

Uh oh.