The Lighter Side

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Meet the Family

We got to the party, which started at six, at seven thirty. I unconsciously drifted closer to Roman as we entered, trying to calm my nerves. Gail was right. Everyone from school was here.

”Took you long enough, ” someone grumbled from behind us.

An evil smirk quickly appeared on Roman’s face as he turned toward my brother, ” Jyro! What a pleasant surprise to see you here.”

Jy ignored him, focusing on me, ” Come on,”

Roman grabbed my arm, stepping in front of me, ” She’s my date, Siere.”

”And? She’s my sister, ” he shot him an icy glare.

I cut in, ” I need to use the restroom.”

They volunteered to guide me at once, but I quickly declined, catching the familiar sight of Gail. Her gorgeous, strapless dress fell to the floor and her curls bounced with every move. A sight I would rarely see, I assume. I pushed through the crowd to her and grabbed her elbow, catching her off guard. She let out a breath of relief when she recognized me.

”Where’s Ro-”

”Fighting with my brother.”

She winced, ” Should have seen that coming. They used to be best friends back when they were younger.”

”What happened?” I inquired, curiously.

She shrugged. ”When do I ever care about what Roman’s doing?”

Fair point.

We walked to the food table by the wall, filling our plates with all the various foods I’ve never seen before. I had to keep asking Gail what a certain food was. When we were finished, Gail led me to a group of people who looked friendly enough for me not to freak out too badly. Gail cleared her throat capturing their attention.

There were two men dressed in identical black suits. I could tell they were brothers and the fathers of Roman and Gail. They all shared the dark hair. One of the woman had brown eyes, which I would assume was Roman’s mother, while the other had blue eyes, which I would assume to be Gail’s mother. Gail and that woman looked far too alike not to be mother and daughter.

“This is Blaine, Roman’s date for the the night,” Gail introduced me, squeezing my hand.

“Hi,” I greeted shyly.

One of the men acknowledged me,” It’s nice to meet you, Blaine. Where is my son, anyways?”

Suddenly, Roman appeared beside me, wrapping an arm around my shoulders.

“Right here, Dad.” He glared at Gail,” Thank you for stealing my date away, peasant.”

“She was my friend first, bastard.”

I was sure they could go on for hours, but luckily their parents were quick to intervene.

Talking with them wasn’t as bad as I thought. They were both very kind and didn’t ask me anything that would make me uncomfortable. It helped that Roman and Gail were there, but I really enjoyed the conversation. I wish I could say the same as my family.

“Raymond, Rachel,” Blake greeted Roman’s parent’s with Julia before turning to Gail’s parents. “ George, Clarissa.”

Blake’s eyes settled on me, his eyes lingering on Roman and I’s locked elbows.

“I see you met our daughter,” Blake announced, something off about his tone.

Our? I wasn’t theirs. I was barely Blake’s.

“She’s lovely,” Rachel commented, sending a kind smile my way. Julia snorted in disbelief. I just rolled my eyes, not wanting to deal with her antics right now.

“Where’s little Garner?” Julia asked Clarissa.

“Upstairs in bed. What about your little ones?”

It sounded like nice, innocent conversation in words, but I’m sure everyone could taste the thick tension between the two women. Thank God I wasn’t the only one who could see through Julia’s BS. Gail and I exchanged glances, laughter bubbling at the edge of our throats.

“Studying their French on the staircase,” she proudly informed her.

Yeah. Studying how many insults they can learn in French.

Clarissa gritted through her teeth,” ...how nice.”

Gail let out a chuckle, unsuccessfully trying to hide it with a cough. Her mother was quick to glare at her before returning to her sickly smile at my evil stepmother.

“Excuse us, we are going to hang out with kids our age,” Roman said, steering us away. Gail protested, but let Roman pull us to the dessert table.

Once we got there, we all erupted in a fit of laughter. I clutched my stomach, gripping on the table to hold me steady. Roman swiftly grabbed a brownie and stuffed it in my mouth. He watched my reaction in amusement.

“Smhh,” I tried to speak. Taking the brownie in my hand, I bit into it. Taking the remainder of it, I smashed it to the side of his face, leaving a big brown mark on his cheek. His eyes widen in surprise, Gail laughing even harder than before.

He growled, playfully,” You better run, Siere.”

I giggled, turning around and taking off between all the people dancing on the dance floor. Looking back, I saw Roman weaving through the crown, trying to catch up to me.

Too busy looking at Roman, I didn’t notice anyone in front of me. I crashed full force into someone in front of me.

“Woah,” the person said, grabbing my shoulders and steadying me. It was a guy, about the same height as Jyro with blonde hair and blue eyes.

Roman was approaching me, his smirk growing larger as he neared me.

“Hide me,” I squeaked, ducking behind the guy.

I grinned victoriously as Roman walked directly past us. Sighing with relief, I turned to thank the guy.

My mouth went dry, my eyes widening.

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