We all sit around in a circle and take turns reading bible verses. I sit alone on one end of the group, an empty chair next to me.
Avery saunters in, a bright smile on her face as she greets everyone and then sits next to me.
“Hey Lukas,” She smiles.
“Hey Avery,” I get up and give her a hug.
“So anything new?” She asks me, pulling her blue bible from her purse.
“Kinda but I think we should wait until after, to talk,” I say before turning my attention to the group leader.
“Okay well, we are definitely talking later.” She says quietly, giving me a small smile.
Alison, our group leader, shushes us and looks over at the pastor. He goes on about the lesson for today. Basically, it’s about the way we deal with personal issues from our past and how it can hold us back from seeing what our future holds.
The lesson is short but very interesting. I end up thinking of Bo the whole time because the subject just reminds me her.
“So spill the beans kid!” Avery says attacking me from behind.
We walk to the stairs on the other side of the church, a place we go to get away from everyone. Taking a deep breath in, I think about how I’m going to explain everything.
“Well see you remember Bo right?” I ask before going furthering my explanation.
“Lockett?” She questions furrowing her eyebrows.
“Yeah, well I sat down next to her in class the other day and we sorta hit it off. But like I don’t know,” I play with my fingers and the scars on my arm catch my eye.
“What do you mean?” She asks leaning her chin on her hand.
“It’s just, Bo is so secretive and I don’t really know her. Then, two nights ago all of us went to a party, she got drunk, so Adrian and I took her home.”
“That was very sweet of you two.”
“But that’s the thing, Avery; I had to search for her wallet to find where she lives and on top of that, I found out that she has an apron from that one restaurant, Aqua,” Avery raises an eyebrow and I shrug, “Even when I questioned her about it. She froze like a deer in headlights and denied everything.” I let out a sigh.
“Luckas, don’t take that stuff personally. Bo has always been a quiet girl, I don’t think she likes people knowing about her. It probably takes a lot to get her to open up,” I nod and she keeps talking, “Maybe if you get really close to her and prove to her that you won’t betray her, she’ll trust you enough to tell you.” She says, her eyes full of seriousness.
“That could work, thank you so much, Avery.” I give her a big hug.
“You’re welcome.” She smiles but it fades rather quickly.
“What’s wrong? Is there a something bothering you?” I feel obligated to give her another hug, the look on her face is the most confused and pained I’ve ever seen. Avery is normally so positive when she’s with me.
“I think I’m starting to really like someone and I’m not supposed to,” She’s lost in her thoughts and I put my hand on her shoulder.
“Why aren’t you suppose to like this person?” I ask, confused.
“Because he’s a lot older than me.” I could tell that this is eating her up. She’s really confused about this, I wish I could help her but she’s being so vague.
“Do you want to talk about this?” I rub her back gently.
“No, I rather not. Thank you, though.” She gives me a weak smile.
“Any time Avery. I have to get going, though, parents are here.” I say giving her a side hug and then running off to my parent’s car.
When we get home I get a text from Mason.
Hey, you up for another party tonight?
I look at the time, it’s 8 o’clock and I have nothing to do.
Sure, where at?
A few minutes later, I get a text from Adrian.
I’ll be there in twenty, the party starts at 9.
I change into a plain white tee and dark blue skinny jeans. My black hoodie sits in my closet and I take it off the hanger. I haven’t worn it in a while, but it still fits.
My parents are in bed already so there’s no point in waking them up and telling them I’m leaving.
I write a quick note and leave it on the kitchen table just as my phone buzzes. Adrian’s truck sits in my driveway, the headlights are off but the engine is humming quietly. I get in but I leave the door open until we reach the end of the street.
“Can you tell me where the party is?” I ask, tapping my fingers on the door handle.
“It’s at Stephanie’s house,” Adrian says, looking over at me with the slightest smile, “Your biggest fan,” I roll my eyes and take out my phone.
“I’d never get close to someone like Stephanie.”
“Oh! By the way, good thing you wore white, it’s a glow in the dark party,” I raise an eyebrow and he hands me a neon orange bandana, “Tie this around your head or I’ll kill you,” I grab the cloth from his hand and tie it off behind my head as we pull up to Steph’s street, “Take off that jacket too, it’ll ruin the glow.” I do as told and take the jacket off my shoulders, it is Friday so there’s no reason I can’t have fun, right?
He parks the truck and as we approach the house we’re handed glow sticks. A couple girls in nothing but bikinis come up to us and draw things on our body with neon markers and paint.
“Woah, hello ladies,” Adrian takes one under his arm and winks at me as he walks through the front doors of Stephanie’s house. I look down at the girl next to me and she stands there, a marker in her hand.
“Here, I think you should have something,” Without warning, she hops up and wraps her legs around my torso. She leans back and I hold onto her so she doesn’t fall, then when she straightens her back her lips roughly connect with mine.
Her tongue shoves something into my mouth and my automatic reflexes cause me to swallow it. The girl slides down my body slowly before waving and walking into the house.
What in the actual fuck did I just swallow?
“Hey dude, are you gonna come inside or not?” I see Mason in the doorway, a full bottle of vodka in hand. I nod and make my way up the stairs, “Want some?” He asks, holding up the bottle. I shrug, take in my hand and take a drink. The liquid burns slightly and I break into a coughing fit, “Been awhile eh?”
“Yeah, where’s everyone at?” I shout over the loud techno music.
Mason nods his head over to our group of friends who sit on the white couches in the living room. We approach them and even Sage is sitting with them.
“The girl is wild Lukas, she snorted cocaine off of Raine’s stomach,” I raise my eyes to meet her’s and her pupils are the largest I’ve ever seen.
“Lukas!” She stands up but falls back down on the seat. Sage stands up again and gains her balance, slightly. She takes my hand and spins in a circle, “Come dance with me! I love this song,” She gasps, pulling me to the group of people dancing.
I’ve never taken care of a conscious high girl before.