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Chapter 29 - Gregory

I absolutely hate her!

I am usually very passive, so I am startled by my own hateful thought. Although I can’t stand the worry in Tay’s eyes, I still reach out and pat his hand while the nurse cleans the blood from my cheek. If he were a cartoon character, I am sure there would be steam coming out of his ears. According to the nurse, Veronica only scrapped the top layers off my skin; if she had dug in her fingers a little harder she might have caused some serious damage to my cheek. The downside is that I shouldn’t speak too much until the wounds are fully healed.

Rafa on the other hand looks apologetic; although Nance assured him it wasn’t really his fault. Well, it is partly his fault and to make amends he had taken it upon himself to call mom or dad and tell them what happened. Mom of course went ballistic, thankfully dad managed to calm mom down enough to let him agree to Tay driving me home.

“You are ready to go.” The nurse said smiling as he finished taping the gaze to my left cheek. “Try not to yawn or poke at it with your tongue. And I know it is hard but try not to sleep on that cheek.” Without further ado, we were ushered from the infirmary.

The drive was a silent one, Tay most likely preparing himself for mom’s famous wrath. “It is not your fault you know.” I turn slightly so I could look at him and pet the hand that is resting on the gearstick.

He looks at me out of the corner of his eye, mouth quirking upwards and squeezing my hand. “I thought you weren’t suppose to talk?” He looks at me with a raised brow before turning his attention back to the road. He sighs “but still, I feel responsible somehow. You are lucky it’s not going to leave a scar with the way he was digging in her nails.”

When we arrive at the house, Tay really needs to work to get me out of the car. I am not looking forward to mom being overprotective and hovering around me. Sure enough, as soon as I set one foot out of the car mom throws open the door and stomps down the drive. “Where is she?” He roars, making both Tay and I flinch at the sound. “Where is that bitch?! I will kill her!” I am glad when dad arrives and manhandles mom back inside, away from the curious and prying eyes of our neighbours.

Once mom finally calmed down, we managed to explain it all, why Veronica was so mean to Nance, the fact that Rafael chose Nance over her didn’t sit well with her after he always fooled around with her when he was in his previous relationships. Mom glared at Tay when he explained that now Rafael met Nance, he was different. He no longer looked at anyone else but her. He always cuddles with her and she met his parents, something he has never done on his own accord.

“And what about you?” Mom asked, glaring at Tay. “The way she said that you and Rafa were always hanging out with her suggests that you too fooled around with her.” I too didn’t miss the implications of her words when she said them. He is not going to deny them. My heart seizes painfully as Tay lets the silence stretch.

“I never fooled around with her.” He says eventually, not looking up at anybody but pressing his thumbnails in his palm. “I was too busy making sure that Julian left Syl alone or get him off my back.” Mom snorts shaking his head, clearly not believing Tay. To be honest, I am not too sure I believe him either. “She is cute, but she isn’t my type at all. I do not need another manipulative woman in my life.” My heart stutters a little at the jab at his mother, he clearly is still feeling betrayed by her. He gets up from his seat, “If that is all, I need to go. I promised Syl we’d go shopping today.” He smiles a little sadly at me before he walks out of the house.

I rush after him, only to see the taillights of his Fiat disappear down the road. “It will be okay Queirdo.” I look up as dad rubs my shoulders, not too sure if I believe it. Needless to say, I slept badly that night, the pain in my cheek came back with a vengeance, despite the painkillers I took before going to bed.

Nance looked quite nervous when I bumped into her the next day on my way up to brush my teeth. She kept fiddling with her sleeves, accessories, her hair. She was definitely not looking forward to the confrontation with Veronica, should she appear at school today. But maybe, just maybe that won’t be today. I just smile a little at her as we pass each other. Her answering smile has me worried, she looks like someone who is ready to make their final walk to the gallows. Tay and Rafa aren’t any different than usual, they chat and smile all the way to school as we carpool in Rafa’s car today.

Tay and Rafa were talking and joking with some other guys form our class when Veronica finally made her entrance. Quite the dramatic one too, her skirt and lose hair bellowing in the wind as she and the rest of Tay’s former clique walk up the steps. Most people stared, whispering to one and other. Nance glared a little as Veronica turned her smug gaze at her where she was standing with her own friends, talking. That all changed when Rafa made his way forward, dropped his arm around Nance and quite literally elbowed Veronica out of the way as he lead Nance and her friends into the building. By all the startled looks that she wore and the rest of her friends, this wasn’t the reaction she was looking for.

I turn to the side as I hear Tay chuckle. He to drapes his arm over my shoulders and gently steers me to the building. “Don’t worry so much Il mi coure, they will be just fine.” He winks at me “Rafa knows what he is doing. Have a little faith in him.” As we arrive at my locker the first bell sounds and Tay kisses the tip of my nose before he disappears in the throng of bodies that rush into the hallways.

“You have an odd boyfriend Greg.” Jumping I turn to see Joey stand behind me, with his head cocked to the side. I frown a little at him, but he doesn’t say anymore just smiles before he starts rambling about the amount of homework we had to do for our first class. I shake my head lightly as I follow him to class.

During lunch it was quite obvious that Veronica had no clue what to do next, she was just standing there trying to be cool as she no longer had a spot at our table and she couldn’t find a table for herself and her friends. Well, that is not really true. There were tables vacant but apparently they didn’t meet her expectations.

“What did she think would happen when she switches?” Joey shook his head as he bit into his chicken sandwich. “There is no way anyone would give up their table for her.” Just as he said those words, Veronica slipped into a vacant spot as someone dumped their trash. Her confidant look didn’t last long as the guy returned and hard-handed pushed her out of his seat before sneering at her as he once more sat down on the chair. “Like I said,” Joey swallowed his last bite. “People will fight you for their rightful seat.”

I stare at him wide-eyed, while Nance didn’t look too sure. “You make it sound like they are animals fighting each other over a scarp of meat.”

Joey seemed to think about this before shrugging “That would be one way of saying it.”

Throughout the day you could see Veronica struggling to find her spot within the already existing cliques, when the last bell sounded she was all by herself. All of the others had ditched her. Some returned to Tay’s and Rafa’s side, they told them that Veronica had made up this huge story about all kinds of crap and they just wanted to see what she would do. They had known from the beginning that she was lying when she said that she dumped Rafa after he begged her to take him back over the weekend.

During training I couldn’t help but compare our school hierarchy to those in the wild, this is where the outsiders are chased away or killed. In this case Veronica would remain an outsider until graduation or until she manages to dethrone someone.

In the end, I am just glad to have my teammates and my boyfriend and that I don’t have to worry about who is saying what about me. I might be thinking quite simple but popularity and I don’t mix very well. I don’t care too much about my reputation or lack there of. I am just happy to be the way I am.

“I do feel a little sorry for her you know?” Tay looks over his shoulder to me as we lie on top of my house’s roof looking at the stars. My parents finally agreed to letting Tay stay over for the night. “To be casted out like that.” I turn on my side and Tay wraps his arm around my waist and drags me closer. I nestle in his body heat with a soft sigh. “She must be very lonely.” Tay rumbles an agreeing sound and I shiver lightly as a breeze passes.

“Let’s get you inside,” Tay murmurs as he rubs my arms. “It’s time for bed anyway.” I snort a little and roll my eyes as he winks at me. I smack his chest a little and he laughs, he has a beautiful musical sounding laugh. I could listen to it any day. I huff as he holds out his hand to me as if I never climbed on our rooftop before. Shaking my head a little, I do accept his hand and let him help me back into my room.

Once inside he wastes no time and gets ready for bed, I reluctantly follow. Mom and dad made him sleep on the little airbed we have. An ancient thing from when we younger and went camping one year in the French mountains. Under heavy protest form my side, which is currently being ignored I am tucked into bed. “Sleep well Il mio cuore.” He softly kisses my forehead. “I will see you in the morning.”

Despite every intention I had of staying awake, I manage to fall asleep as soon as I close my eyes. I wake up to a light snoring sound coming from the side of my bed. Looking over the edge, I can’t help but smile as I see Tay’s sleeping form stretched out awkwardly on the slowly deflating airbed. Snickering softly I grab my phone from the nightstand and take several pictures of him before he finally stirs. “Good morning Tay!” Tay opens one eye and peeks at me, groans before stuffing his face into the pillow. Mumbling about it being too damn early to be this chipper.

Feeling excited to spend the entire day with him, I hop out of bed. I tug his blanket back only to startle at the sight of his morning wood. Tay leers at me as I feel a blush spread over my cheeks. He looks to damn smug and handsome like this so I kick him in the shin making him yelp, he rubs his shin as I drop the blanket on his head before marching out of the room. Once in the hallway I slow down and catch my breath, looking down I see that I have the same problem as Tay.

A hand latches onto my arm and drags me into the family bathroom. “Why not let me help you with that.” Tay’s lust filled eyes dip down to the obvious tent in my sweats as he presses close to me. I lost my voice at hearing his so I just blushingly nod my head. Quite eager to see what he is going to do about it.

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