Autumn's Light

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Not just highschool

Morning came and Ryder woke me up with kisses along my collar bone. I stirred in my sleep as I opened my eyes to see his amazing face.

“Rise and Shine sweetheart.”

I half smiled and stretched out for a minute. “What time is it?”

He smirked at me. “Almost 6..”

He slid off the bed and out into the hallway. Mine that kid could drive me crazy so quickly.

I got out of bed and went into the bathroom. Showered and got ready for the day. I picked out a black hoodie with leggings with matching tennis shoes. Today was going to be a long one, I could just tell. I pulled my hair up into a high messy bun on top of my head. Satisfied I went out into the hallway, slinging my bag over my shoulder and grabbing my phone.

I ran down the stairs and listened for any sign of Ryder. I heard the hallway shower turn on when I was in my room. He must’ve been in with Bryce and got ready. He usually could be heard for miles, but I didn’t hear anything. I went to the kitchen and he was there texting, leaning on the counter. He was in a football hoodie and joggers, matched with a baseball cap. This kid could make anything look good.

“Let’s get this over with..” I asked as I walked into his view.

His eyes went to me. “Well. You can come here first.”

He opened his arms and I gladly went into them, wrapping my arms around his waist this time. My god. He was still reading his phone when I turned around, leaning on the counter too.

“What’s so interesting?”

He smirked and moved his phone away into his pocket. Ouch, rejected.

“Let’s go hot stuff.”

He led me to his house and into the garage and I noticed the Charger was gone. I figured we would take the Mustang but he surprised me with walking to the second garage and walking to a Chevy Camaro. I rose a brow at him while he was trying to hold in a laugh.

“Okay, you caught me. Mustang is my mom’s. The Charger is my dad’s. This though..” He turned to the Camaro. “Is all mine.”

I stared at the Camaro. It was a beautiful midnight blue color with black accents all around it. I think I died a little.

“And.. how did you afford this?”

He smirked at me and jumped in the driver’s seat, me following suit and getting in the passenger side.

“My mom worried I wouldn’t accept Talon as a father figure and when they got married a few years ago, she forwarded her concerns to him and he took it to heart that I didn’t like him or something so long story short, I got this baby last year.”

I rolled my eyes at the statement. “So basically, you made him buy your love?” He better not have.

He shook his head and tilted it towards me. “Ah, no sweet cheeks. He’s a great stepdad. They both gave me this as a birthday present.” He winked at me.

That little shit totally skipped half the story to make it sound different.

“You’re the absolute worst!” I smacked him on his arm.

He didn’t even react to my hit. “Nah. The worst is that when he actually thought I hated him he got me that pool outside..” He had a smirk on his face still. He was waiting on my reaction I could tell.

“RYDER!”

We got to the school and everyone stopped to look at us getting out the Camaro. I was not used to this attention but lately, I had a lot of it. With the rumor mills and the drama lately, I couldn’t blame the student body for watching me. I had a plan, a purpose. I was going to help Axel get this school clean, well and help my dad as well. Even if he disapproved of it. This wasn’t just high school anymore.

After our first period, we had an all-school assembly. I didn’t think much of it, but the football team had to go sit by each other so naturally, I flocked to Savannah and Adrian’s side. I was not used to actually sitting in the bleachers like this. We found some open spots and sat down. Axel appeared sitting behind me and I leaned back while he leaned down. I had to tell him.

“I talked to Bryce. It’s definitely going around the team.”

I looked up to him and he nodded. My eyes found Ryder and my brother and they were both watching me already. Man, I bet they both just saw that conversation go down. Whatever, this was important. Savannah was busy on her phone and on the other side of her, Adrian was talking to the girl next to her. I was naturally on the end near the stairs.

I caught a glimpse of Axel’s body moving and then sitting down next to me. I rose a brow at his bold move. He then leaned into me whispering into my ear.

“You think you could get Hendrix talking?”

I turned my head to get close to his ear.

“What do you mean by talking?”

Luckily the student body was talking so much, it was drowning out our conversation. Sav noticed Axel was next to me but didn’t say a thing.

“I mean, he’s vulnerable right now. He wants you back. Get him talking.”

I rose a brow again, leaning back. I had to fake my way through wanting to be friends again with Hendrix without the boys noticing and especially without Evie noticing.

“How do I do that with Evie stalking him like a vulture?”

His smirk appeared on his lips, clearly amused by my question.

“Clearly you could figure something out.” He gave a wink and I rolled my eyes in response.

As if she heard her name called, Evie came striding into the gym and sat down in the first set of bleachers near the ground. Ayla came in following her. I leaned back into Axel.

“Why is Ayla around her lately?”

A slight chuckle came out of his lips. “You think they sent me here alone?”

My eyes widened and my head turned to face him instantly. “You mean she’s..”

He was already nodding to my question.

“So why do you need my help then?” He had Ayla for a female side, why was I needed?

“Ayla has Evie on lockdown. She’s on constant watch of her. I have the student body locked down and watching everything going on. But, there’s one group that hates my guts and I cannot get into.”

I glanced over at the football team and then the cheer squad on the floor.

“You got it sunshine.” He saw where I was looking answering my question.

I gazed back to him just as the assembly started. Principle Jacobs came out and did a talk on a reminder of the rules of the school and keeping our space clean. Typical rules and boring introductions to certain teachers. Today was our safety assembly, maybe I should’ve stayed home today.

My phone dinged in my pocket and I looked down at it. It was my brother.

‘Ryder forgot his phone in his bag and I’m advising you to move your ass away from Axel.’

I snickered a bit. The irony of the situation was amusing from my standpoint. Axel simply smirked and slid back up to the bleacher seat above me.

‘Better?’

Ding.

‘No.’

I stared over across the gym at him and slid more towards the end of the row so I wasn’t right in front of Axel anymore. I noticed Ryder’s eyes on mine now and I smiled at him and mouthed. ‘It’s okay babe.’

His gaze left mine when Sav came sliding over to me.

“Remind me why we came to this again?”

The teachers were still talking and I clearly was not paying attention.

“Because we are all idiots..”

We both giggled a bit when Ms. Gale appeared on the stairs next to me with a serious look on her face.

“Autumn, come with me.”

“But-“ I went to protest.

“Now dear.”

I shot Sav a look of confusion and her expression matched mine. I stood up and turned around meeting Axel’s eyes. He nodded at me and mouthed. ‘Evie.’ He motioned to her face smiling up at the situation. That little bitch said something.

Ms. Gale led me down the stairs and I noticed Bryce and Ryder stand up in the stands. We rounded the hallways and go to the office, where she told me to sit down in the chair across from hers, while she shut the door behind us. I did what I was told.

“Autumn. This is something Principle Jacobs would handle but he’s busy at the moment..” She sat down in her desk and stared at me. I had no idea what was going on.

“We received a tip that you have been selling drugs to students on campus.”

I went to protest yet again, but she held up her hand to silence me.

“Clearly, I was shocked that your name came up. Considering who your father is..”

There was a knock at the door and Axel came sliding into view, shutting the door behind him. Wait a minute, the administration must know about who he really is.

“Jen. It’s not Autumn.” He sat down next to me so calmly. I blinked in response.

Ms. Gale was staring between us for a moment, before leaning forward in her desk.

“You told her?!”

Axel simply nodded and leaned forward too in a power stance.

“She’s helping me actually.”

I looked back to Ms. Gale then to Axel. Clearly, I was just going to sit there as they hashed things out.

“Axel that was not your call to make.”

He shrugged yet again, leaning back in his chair like he didn’t have a care in the world.

“You want this problem gone or not? I did things my way.” He looked over at me and winked, maybe trying to get me to calm down. I noticed I was sitting like a stiff board.

She was sighing and finally gave him to him, leaning back in her chair as well. “Fine.”

He smiled, thinking he won the argument.

“But,” she started. "This is on you”

Am I still in the room? I hated being talked about right in front of my face. I crossed my arms in response. I was not weak.

His smiled disappeared and he got to his feet. “No one will know.” He turned and looked at me. “We’ll talk later.” With that, he opened the door and left the office.

Ms. Gale was staring at me so I started to fumble with my hands.

“How much do you know Autumn?” Her voice changed back to that sweet tone I knew.

“I don’t know. Enough…” I was staring at my hands at this point.

She got up and walked over her desk, appearing in front of me leaning back on the desk. “You don’t have to do this. Just because Axel asked you to does not mean your obligated..”

I cut her off.

“No no. I want to do this. I mean, you know the shit storm my year has been already. I just want some kind of purpose to all this, some explanation and this makes sense to help me with that.”

She nodded. “And your father knows?”

Oops. “Well…”

She rose a brow at me.

“He’s still in the hospital till tomorrow. I’ll tell him then, I promise. If he doesn’t want me to do this, I will back out. I promise.”

“That's a lot for a young girl to handle Autumn, really think about this.”

She stood up and went to open to door, the halls were filled with voices. Clearly, the Assembly ended. I started to walk down the hallway to reach the door out of the office.

Shit, what was I going to say was happening to me?

To answer my question, Axel grabbed my arm and pulled me to the end of the hallway.

“If anyone asks where you went, you tell them your counselor needed you.”

I rose a brow. “You really think she’d emergency call me in here?”

“She would if someone tipped them off about you having suicidal thoughts again..”

Damn. He was digging deep with this one, but it made sense. But god damn, ouch.

He walked out into the hallway first and I sat back for a while trying to formulate a plan in my mind. Here goes nothing.

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