'Yo! Where were you earlier? I needed my wingman. Rochelle has lost her fucking mind.' Rock sighed as we walked into the canteen, the smell of cold mashed potato making me cringe. I glanced around, clocking Art sat on a table, his lunch wrappers littering the table.
'So how did she find out where you went?'
'Fucking Freyas brother works there. He told her and she couldn't wait to tell Rochelle.' he spat angrily as he peered at the food in the buffet cart, wrinkling his nose up in disgust. We walked to the fridges and I grabbed a tuna salad sandwich with crisps, whilst Rock had a BLT, crisps and two bars of chocolate.
'Thought you were eating healthily?' I raised my eyebrows as he shrugged.
'I need sugar. I'm in shock.' He grinned as we paid, making our way to Art. Rock turned his chair around and straddled it, shoving the entire chocolate bar into his mouth. We watched in awe as he unwrapped the other quickly, almost swallowing it whole. I shook my head as I peeled the wrapper from my sandwich, before taking a large bite.
'Dude, your lip is bleeding.' Frowned Art as he studied me.
I shrugged, continuing to eat. Thankfully Rochelle and her clan decided to enter the canteen, distracting any attention from me. Rochelle ignored us, storming past angrily. Rock sighed as he pulled his phone out, busying himself on Facebook.
'So how'd you split your lip?' He asked curiously without looking up. I noticed Art watching me carefully as I shrugged dismissively.
'What can I say. I'm a clumsy eater.'
'You got so hungry you chewed your lip raw? Wow. Not heard that one before.' His face changed then, clearly bored of the current line of conversation. 'So anyway, I've decided we need a party to celebrate me being single again. It's been a while since we partied, my folks are out of town next week so it leaves me the house free.'
This was typical Rock, celebrating his break up with a party.
'Plus we need to find some new women. Like, ones that aren't going to turn pyscho when you behave like a normal guy, you know? No more fucking nut jobs.' He mused out loud as he gazed around the canteen, before his attention fell to a pretty brunette who was reading a book, her brow furrowed with concentration. His eyes lit up as he jabbed Art in the arm.
'What about her Art? She looks your type, all bookish and stuff.'
Art rolled his eyes in exasperation before sending a quick glance over his shoulder before turning back towards us.
'Lauren Tate. She volunteers in the library, should I propose now, our later?' He commented dryly to which Rock groaned.
'Our of interest, do you actually ever want to get laid? Ever?'
Not this eternal argument again.
'Hang on, why don't you grill Ace on his sex life, or lack of it?' Art fired back suddenly, causing me to raise my eyebrows questionably as he held his hands up. 'No offence dude, but you haven't slept with anyone since Clarissa, and he doesn't give you shit. But because I am simply waiting for the right person, he rips the shit out of me. So. Genuine question.'
Art narrowed his eyes at Rock who looked at me from the corner of his eyes.
'Because Ace does like girls occasionally. If he wanted to, he could happily be ball deep. He creates options. But you, I dunno. You've got like, zero interest in anyone, ever. It's weird.' He turned his attention back to his phone as Art stared at him in shock.
'You think I have no interest in anyone?'
I thought for a minute. Rock had a point, Art was never really into anyone. I just assumed it was because he was waiting for Mrs Right to show up, waving a sign around telling him she was there.
'Shows how much you know.' He sneered as he stood up, gathering his litter. ''Fuck you Rock, and your party too.'
Rock started laughing, his blue eyes crinkling in the corners as he did. I studied him for a moment, noticing his nails were bitten, something he only seemed to do when he was really stressed. Most people stressed over exams, girls, money, that kind of thing, but Rock had only ever shown signs of stress when his family or friends were struggling. So if this was linked with Rochelle, it would be the first time. Slight bags hung under his eyes, exposing a tiredness he was clearly trying his best to ignore.
'So you really think a party is a good idea? You look like shit man.'
Rock and I had the sort of relationship that allowed us to be frank with each other, even if that meant insulting each other at times. He scowled at me as he flicked some imaginary dust from his broad shoulder.
'But I still look better than you at my worst.' He winked at me then and I shook my head.
'The party goes ahead. We need to relax a little. I'll invite my cousin and her friends.'
He weighed his eyebrows at me, fully expecting me to shake with excitement no doubt. His cousin was a beauty, no doubt; but she was in a rather serious relationship with the quarterback at her school. She went to The Academy which was in the better area of town, with better sports equipment, teachers and facilities. But really, school was school.
'What's with you man? You can't possibly be pissed about Clarissa and that douche? Get yourself involved with someone who will take your mind off her- what about Daisy?' He glared at me, his eyes searching my face for answers I didnt want him to find.
'Are you gay too?' He demanded, folding his arms across his chest as he peered at me. He was convinced anyone who wasn't banging their way around school were gay- so obviously Art hit the top of his list.
I cringed as I met his eyes.
'You are asking me that? Really? It's 2019. I can be anything, and I don't need to declare shit.'
Rock laughed and leaned forward. 'You are the only guy I'd consider turning for Ace.' He whispered dramatically and I shoved him away, joining in with his laughter. Rock was the biggest ladies man I knew, but would flirt with his own reflection given the chance.
'Seriously though. I know you. You are into someone, and I want to know who it is.'
At that moment my attention was caught by the familiar sight of raven black hair and skin tight leggings.
Fuck me she was beautiful.
But she wasn't alone. Her green eyes met mine as she stared at me silently, before turning her head back to the girl beside her.
'Erm, who the fuck is that?' Rock uttered, gazing at the girl with hungry eyes.
I managed to pull my eyes away from Veronica to see a curvaceous brunette standing beside her, her ocean blue eyes locking on mine.
She was trouble. In jeans and a loose sweater. Her eyes didn't move from mine as she walked towards us, Veronica trying desperately to move on, leaving the girl behind her.
'Hey boys.' Her voice drawled, her eyes running over my body, causing a blush to spread on my cheeks.
'Ronnie, introduce us.' She commanded softly, causing Veronica to stiffen beside her.
'Yeah man, introduce us.' Said Rock, nudging me eagerly. I tried to break away from her stare, but realised I couldn't.
'This is Rock, puppy dog of bitch head cheerleader. This is Ace, friend of puppy dog.' Veronica said with a bored expression on her flawless face. Her eyes met mine as she cleared her throat, and nodded her head towards the girl next to her.
'This is Cameron Luca. Shes moved here-' she was cut off by a throaty laugh coming from Cameron.
'Because I'm a bit of a bad girl. They kicked me out of my school so here I am, trying another. Its already starting to look interesting. Do you have a girlfriend Ace? Not that I give a shit, if I am honest. Just being polite.'
I started to stammer, unable to deal with the three pairs of eyes burning into me, when Rock jumped in.
'We are both single.' he shot her a winning smile, before shooting a glare in Veronica's direction.
'Luca hey? You related to Ryder?'
Cameron rolled her eyes as she slid onto the table, sitting perfectly still as she opened her eyes wide.
'We are all pretty fucked up in my family. Ryder is my older cousin. Ace, walk me to class?' Rock frowned as he shrugged.
'If you prefer the golden boy, go right ahead. See you around pretty.'
He winked at me as he stood, leaving me like a deer in headlights. Veronica and I spoke silently as Cameron walked over, waiting for me to get my shit together.
What could I do? Veronica turned and walked back in the direction she had come from, without looking back.
'Or we could skip class. I have a feeling it would be worth it.'
How the fuck had I ended up in this situation?!