This was the only thought that kept repeating inside my head, since I arrived at it this morning. My mood was the worst ever. I had snapped viciously to half of the school; the other half had the survival instinct of staying the hell away from me.
Jesse was the only one brave enough to venture near me today. And that’s just so she could brag about her night out with Miss-Pop-Teen Celebrity-of-the-year that she had the opportunity to meet last night at the club. She had taken a lot of photos and made a lot of videos in a limousine. And she was now the most popular girl at school because of this. I would be happy for her, if I wasn’t so miserable. I wanted to be with Matt and Vincent so bad!
“Seriously, Tay, what’s up with you today? Are you mad because I ditched you last night? We have a deal, you know that! You saw the pictures, I couldn’t miss that chance!”
“I’m not mad, Jesse. I don’t care about your ditching, I know you couldn’t miss that chance. I would’ve done the same thing if I were in your place.” I mumbled in a bad mood.
“Then what is it? Did something happen to you and Matt? Why is he not at school? Did you guys had a fight again?”
She had no idea that Matt and I had hooked up at the club yesterday and I haven’t told her yet. There was a bunch of things I needed to tell her, but I didn’t have the patience or the mood for this today. And I felt like I should wait for Matt and have him by my side when I did tell her, you know? It seemed like the right thing to do.
All I wanted now was for classes to be frigging over so I could go see Matt, hug him, and kiss him again. “No. We didn’t fight, Jesse. We’re more than fine, don’t worry.”
“Why isn’t he here, then?” She pressed on.
Jesse didn’t know about Matt’s beatings and I couldn’t tell her, because this was his secret and he made me promise to never tell anyone.
“He’s probably tired. We left the club pretty late.” I mumbled, avoiding her eyes. “Look I’ve got to go.” Because I suck at lying and if we continue this conversation you might catch up on it. “Talk to you later.”
Classes took centuries to end. I felt like I was growing a long white beard from all the waiting I had to endure. The clock insisted on ticking in super-ultra-mega slow mode, to my upmost grievance. I had been yanking at my hair for the past half hour, in all my desperation to leave this place.
“Holmes, could you please stop yanking at your hair? This is the third time I’m asking you! If you disrupt this class one more time, I’m going to have to give you detention, young man!” My Trig teacher bellowed to the room.
I stiffened in my seat in horror. Oh dear God, not detention! I would literally die if I had detention today. “Sorry, sir. I’ll behave. I’m behaving. Super good behavior here.” I squeaked in panic.
People sniggered all around me because I couldn’t bite my teacher’s head off like I’ve been doing to them for the whole morning. The sniveling losers. I shot them all a heated glare and crossed my arms over my chest, seething quietly on my seat.
When lunch bell rang, I was out of the class so fast that I think I broke a speed record. My Trig teacher yelled something to me, but I was already running down the hallways without looking back. If I didn’t let him talk to me, he couldn’t give me detention. Ha! Take that, loser Trig torture dungeon master!
I rammed my books in my locker and banged the door shut with a vengeance, making a few students that were standing close by jump in fright, then headed to the cafeteria. I was glad Jesse was Queen of Popularity today and everyone was demanding her attention everywhere she went. She wasn’t going to have time for me during lunch break and I could sulk alone in peace here, without having to lie to her about the real reason of my foul mood.
I slumped heavily on my usual seat and banged my head a few times against the table, grumbling under my breath about how much the world was unfair and wouldn’t let me be with Matt now, until my forehead began to throb in pain.
“Hello, there!” a cheerful voice greeted me by the other side of the table then.
I craned my neck to see ‘new guy’ Sean, hunched on the seat in front of me.
“I’m seriously considering murder someone, anyone, right now, man. Just thought you should know.” I warned him.
He laughed, seeming deeply amused. “Sure. Whatever you say, tough guy.”
“Ugh! Why can’t you people just leave me alone today?” I complained.
Sean smiled and leaned over the table, crossing both muscled arms over each other and resting his chin on top of them, like a dog would do. “I’ve heard it’s actually the exact opposite, Three-Way. People are talking about Taylor Holmes unleashing the Hell Hounds of Baskerville everywhere you go today,” he said, chuckling at the clever pun people had made.
“Hounds of Baskerville. A Sherlock joke. Clever. Never thought people could be smart in this school.”
“Yeah, I loved the joke. I’m even reading a few Sherlock Holmes books just so I can come up with clever comebacks your way!” he confessed with a teasing grin.
“Don’t even bother, Sherlock Holmes jokes are the worst.” I mumbled sourly.
“Aw, Three-Way, you underestimate me,” he said, faking hurt.
“God, what’s up with this ’Three-Way′ thing?” I snapped irritated.
He had called me that twice already.
“That’s my nickname for you!” he explained proudly.
“That nickname blows. Honestly. It doesn’t even make sense.”
“I think it rocks.” He countered cheekily.
“It. Blows.” I repeated. “Don’t take it personally, nicknaming isn’t for everyone. You’ll find your talent elsewhere, new guy.”
He rolled his eyes, but his lips still showed a hint of a smile. “So, Three-Way, why the long face? Is it because your two boyfriends skipped school today and left you all alone?”
“What nonsense are you talking about now, man?” I grumbled tiredly.
“Well, there’s boyfriend number one, the blond bloke. He’s on the football team. Great linebacker, drives like a freaking tank in that field. Then there’s the other one, the rich, bossy dude that everybody seems to be terrified of. He’s not around either. The two are always hovering near you, looking like two love sick puppies,” he said, picking at his nails distractedly.
“Shut up. You’re just talking gibber jabber there.” I scoffed. “I officially have zero boyfriends right now.”
“Oh, official-smishial.” He jeered, not believing me at all.
“I don’t even know what that means...” I said. “You make. No. Sense.”
“Whatever you say, Three-Way. That’s the reason for your nickname, by the way. You’re in a three way relationship. Even if you don’t know it yet.”
And he shot me a teasing wink.
“Dude, I’m serious. The nickname. It. Blows.” I made a gesture with my hands of a huge atomic bomb exploding with some sound effect noise while I was mimicking the explosion.
He chuckled hard at my theatricals and my phone buzzed right then, making me jump startled. I heard Sean still chuckling while I checked the message.
M@tt: Go grab some food and eat.
I turned to see if Matt was in the cafeteria spying on me, but I couldn’t see him anywhere.
“Boyfriend’s texting?” Sean asked with a knowing smirk spread all over his smug face. I shot him a glare and typed a reply.
T-Tay: I AM eating.
I usually lost my appetite when I was anxious or nervous and right now, I wasn’t in any mood for food.
M@tt: No you’re not. You don't eat when you're anxious.
That boy knew me so damn well.
“Which boyfriend it is, footballer hunk or bossy billionaire?” Sean asked again, a teasing sing song in his voice.
“Shut up.” I mumbled while another message beeped.
M@tt: Go eat!
I glared at the phone and typed back fast.
T-Tay: Are you at the doctor?
M@tt: No. Just left. Have a sprained ankle
M@tt: and a couple broken ribs.
T-Tay: Oh no! It looked pretty bad yesterday :´(
M@tt: Yeah. Felt like it was broken.
M@tt: It’ll get better soon. Don’t worry, holmie.
T-Tay: Where R U now?
M@tt: Going with V to my place pick some of my stuff up.
M@tt: Don’t worry. Dad’s prob not there, okay?
T-Tay: PLEASE be careful Matt!
M@tt: I will, I promise. Gotta go. See U soon.
I smiled like a goof at his message and was about to pocket my phone, when another message beeped. It was from Vincent this time:
VW: Stop worrying, Holmes. I’m with him, nothing will happen.
VW: Now STOP texting. Go. Eat. He’ll talk to you later.
T-Tay: Okay. Jeez. I’m going!
Vincent was imposing even in his texts. They all had a bossy tone in-built in them. Maybe Vincent could think about developing an app.
It could change all sentences to a bossy one, like, if you typed: ’How are you doing?′ the Worthington App would instantly change the message to: ’I am absolutely sure that you are okay,′ because W. App – or WAPP, if you may – just knows how you’re doing.
Heck, WAPP tells you how you’re doing and you just have to obey.
Vincent would make quite a fortune with this...
“I can’t believe they’re ganging up on me!” I grumbled to the phone.
“Who? The two boyfriends?” Sean asked nosily.
“Yes!” I said, huffing. “I mean, no! I mean, they’re not... ah, what the hell, yeah, the two boyfriends.” I muttered, giving up on my battle of wits with Sean.
The big guy could be persistent as hell, I’ll give him that.
“I need to get some food and eat. As ordered by the boyfriends,” I said, standing up and leaving him cackling in victory at my back.
After lunch was over, I headed for my next class, which went by ridiculously slow, as I stared longingly at the clock on the wall, counting each dying-turtle-slow second it took to move. We were at the middle of the teacher’s mind numbing lecture when Vincent walked into the classroom, interrupting the class.
The bossy tone was fully operational there. “Professor Todd, I have a slip note from the Principal here. He asked me to come fetch Taylor,” Vincent said and patted his jeans, trying to find the note, but after a few seconds he gave up. “Seems that I may have dropped it somewhere... oh well, you’ll have to take my word for it, sir, because I don’t have time to go look for a stupid piece of paper now. Taylor, can you get a move on? I don’t have all day, you know.” he ordered, waving an irritated hand my way.
I stared at him, mouth hanging open, while everybody in the classroom turned to look at me.
“You heard him, Holmes! Be quick about it.” Professor Todd bellowed, making me snap to attention, grab my books and hurry out of the room with Vincent leading the way.
“So... Am I in trouble? What does Principal Haynes wants with me?” I asked while I tried to keep up with Vincent’s long strides. What was he even doing at school anyway? Wasn’t he supposed to be helping Matt get his stuff back?
“He wants nothing with you. There’s no slip note. I made that up to get you out of class. We’re leaving school.” Vincent explained, turning the hallway and heading to the front doors.
“What about me skipping classes? Didn’t you say I would get in trouble with my parents for that?” I asked with a grumble.
“Yeah, well… you only have a few classes left for the day, I’m sure you can come up with an excuse. And the way you’re biting everyone’s head today, I’ll figure you’d get detention or even suspension, at the rate you’re going. I thought it’d be best if we pick you up and end your suffering.”
“I’m not biting anyone’s head,” I said snippily. “It’s no fun being ditched, okay? How did you even know about me ‘biting’ anything anyway?”
“Jesse texted Matt, to check if he was okay. She told him you were PMS’ing all over the place and we figured you wanted out, so we came to get you. We just finished packing up his stuff in the car.” he told me.
“Jesse has such a big mouth!” I hissed, but then I saw Matt climbing out of the passenger’s seat and limping in my direction.
One foot had his worn battered converse shoe on, and the other had a white splint supporting his ankle. For a moment there, the sun hit his face, making his blond hair shine in a golden halo around his head. His blue eyes glinted as he smiled at me. My breath got caught in my throat at the sight. The happiness that was ever present in Matt was back in his face. He didn’t look defeated or sad anymore.
My bad mood vanished completely with the sight of Matt’s smile. I bolted towards him, grinning so wide that my cheeks hurt and I ran as fast as my feet could take me. I launched myself in his arms and hugged him with all I had.
Then I remembered I shouldn’t have done that, because of his broken rib, but he didn’t seem to mind. He didn’t show any sign of pain, he didn’t complain at all.
He just hugged me back as tight as I had hugged him. I rested my face on his broad chest, basking in the warmth and familiarity of his arms around me. I had my undefeatable giant warrior back: my stunning, beautiful, dream boy.