9. Damn, she's a hard one to get
￼Wrapping the towel around my waist, I stepped out of the bathroom. Captain was lying lazily on my bed after waking me up.
Not fair, buddy.
“Time for a bath?” I teased him with a smile whilst drying my hair and shoulders with another towel.
He howled lazily and rolled over to the other side, facing away from me. I laughed. He really hated morning baths. He’d hold on to the door, rugs, anything possible if I have to drag him to the bathroom.
“Evening, okay?” I said as I walked towards my stereo box.
I turned it up and went inside my walk-in closet to dress up. I wore my jeans, picked out a white t-shirt and a maroon sweatshirt then came out, singing along with the adrenaline pumping song booming in the stereo - Warriors of the World by Manowar - trying to sound as deep and dangerous as possible.
Here our soldiers stand from all around the world
Waiting in a line to hear the battle cry
I threw the t-shirt and sweats down on my bed next to Captain and walked over to my dressing table, still drying my hair with a towel. Staring into the mirror, I took my time singing the one song I’d considered a challenge. This was a difficult song for me since my voice wasn’t exactly as deep as theirs but I tried my best, and I’d been improving day by day since puberty hit me.
We alone are fighting for metal that is true
We own the right to live the fight
We’re here for all of you
Now swear the blood upon your steel
Will never die
Now stand and fight together beneath the metal sky
As I applied hair gel, styling my hair in an updo and taking note that I should ask Scott in the evening to trim it just a little bit before Claire starts asking me sarcastically if I’d appreciate her sharing her hair-ties with me, I saw Captain - through the mirror - getting down from the bed and moving towards the stereo. Just about that time, the chorus of the song came around and I turned to him with an arm stretched out, a finger pointed at him, and screaming the song with all my might.
RAISE YOUR HANDS INTO THE AIR
WE’RE WARRIORS, WARRIORS OF THE WORLD.
Stopping short on his tract, he barked back at me. He hated this song with a passion. Maybe it was because I’d been screaming it every morning like a teen girl for too long until I finally got some grip. Now that I was finally able to rock this song, I thought he should learn to appreciate my hard work, not turning off the stereo. He barked again.
He howled back irritatedly and somewhat pleadingly.
“I said no,” I replied calmly with a tone of command.
Howling again sulkily, he went back to bed. I looked back to the mirror again, singing and spraying the body spray on my bare torso. Also appreciating my growing abs. Not long before (last year), I was only lean with no packs but now, I was starting to get some. And I planned on maintaining it and improving it.
I wore my shirt, sweats, shoes, gave the sulking Captain a kiss on his head since he’d obediently endured the song and we left the room.
I was supposed to drive straight to school but along the way, I found myself heading towards Alana’s. By seven I was at her driveway. I gave two honks and got out of the car, looking up towards the house. The curtain from the window facing the driveway moved and I saw my Mongrel look down at me from her room.
I blew her a kiss and she widened her eyes as she gaped at me, making me laugh. Then pulling back her attitude, she pulled back the curtain with as much force and haughtiness she could effort.
I pulled out my phone from my jeans pocket and called her. I’d gotten her number just the night before from Connor, who had to ask Kendra for it since even he didn’t have it either.
“Hello?” Mongrel answered.
“Told you I’d get it,” I said.
The curtain opened again and I grinned up at her, saying, “Get down, Mongrel. You and I gotta go.”
I walked up to the front door and rang the doorbell. Few seconds later the door opened and I almost started choking at nothing.
Holy shit. It’s the badass doctor.
We just stared at each other for a while, recalling how we’d seen each other before. And seeing him narrow his gray eyes at me like he was making sure I was that rascal who came to the hospital the other night after a street fight, I felt kinda nervous and anxious, solely because of the fact that he was Alana’s father.
Normally I wouldn’t really care if somebody like me or not but . . . With the way I was falling for Alana and everything, I wanted him to just cut me some slack. I was even much taller than him but suddenly, I felt like I was shrinking.
“Yes?” He asked calmly.
Fuck, he’s so intimidating.
I cleared my throat and said, “Morning, Sir.”
“What brings you here?”
“Alana, Sir. I’m driving her to school.” I answered straight to the point. I wasn’t really one who’d beat around the bush or hide my purposes.
He raised his eyebrows in response. “I see.”
Yeah, you do.
Does boyfriends really feel this awkwardness when they meet the dads?
Honestly, I wouldn’t know. I’d never dated before or been with any girl. Not that I didn’t have my way. Allow me to brag vainly. I could’ve taken a new chick home every night if I wanted to but, I knew that was not what I needed. What I needed was salvation.
And yeah, I knew I was not in any way close to being her boyfriend but I was at least doing something boyfriends usually do - driving the girl to school.
Just as things were about to get major awkward for me, Alana came, looking fresh and pretty in a fitting dark-green, full sleeved shirt, black skinny jeans and Chuck Taylors. She’d let down her hair today.
“Hi,” she said, eyeing her father gingerly. If I’m not wrong, I think she was pretty worried to see me with her father.
Of course, I’m bad news.
I smiled at her, genuinely this time. It felt really good to see her again.
“Hi, Alana,” I replied, greeting her properly with her name for the first time.
Hell, I wasn’t calling her Mongrel in front of her father.
“So he’s driving you to school, sweety?” Her dad looked at her questioningly and yet calmly.
I swear, there’s something fucking intimidating about calm people.
“I . . . Uh. Um . . . Yeah. I guess he is,” she stuttered.
“Uh, no. He’s a friend from elementary school,” she answered.
Hmm. Pretty good with answers. Friend from elementary . . . right.
I suppress a smirk.
“Xavier!” David exclaimed, coming out from another room.
“Hey, buddy,” I smiled back at him.
“You know each other?” The dad asked David.
“Yeah. He’s my friend,” David answered, “and Alana’s enemy.”
And here I was thinking I was doing something really boyfriend-ly.
Alana started coughing at once. I looked down to the floor, hiding my smile. I was seconds away from chortling out loud like a maniac.
“Uh. We gotta go. We’re late,” she said, hustling up and hugging her dad.
“See you around, David. Sir,” I acknowledged them both with a nod each before walking away with Alana.
On the way to my car, she hissed, “Who told you to come pick me?”
“No one told me not to so I came.” I was good at twisting things back at people.
“You’re crazy. I almost had an heart attack.”
“Why? Does seeing me affect your heart that much?” I teased, flicking an eyebrow with a smirk.
“Yes. Seeing you is as horrifying as watching The Exorcist.”
That made me laugh out loud. I really have no idea how and where she get her answers from sometimes. “No worries, Mongrel. No one can help disliking this Brad Pitt for long. You’ll get over it soon.”
She scoffed and rambled sulkily as she stomped on besides me, “I’m not one of your senseless fan girls. You can’t manipulate me with that charming smile of yours.”
I stopped short; a little surprised. “What was that?”
Not realizing what she had said, she stared back at me passively. I was barely forcing back a smile. Then eventually, as what she’d said dawned on her, her cheeks crimsoned brightly.
She blinked rapidly and stuttered bashfully, “I . . . Uh, I . . . I, I.”
Alright. I get it. Let’s just try not to die of embarrassment. I’m a nice guy.
And pretty hot with a charming smile.
Inside my head I was laughing my lungs off but outside, I just smiled back a bit since I could see she was almost dying of embarrassment. I walked ahead towards the car. She was too embarrassed to even breathe a word now. I kinda felt sorry for her.
I opened the front seat, passenger door and held it open for her, saying, “Your drive awaits, my beautiful Mongrel.
She stared at me without a word. I stared back at her, tilting my head a little to the side with a soft smile.
“Not yours, Narcissist,” she finally said, stepping up.
I pushed my lower lip out to a disappointed pout as if I was heartbroken. I saw her almost smile but she instantly looked away, getting inside the car.
Damn. She’s a hard one to get.