The Ghost (Ghost #1)

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Chapter 15


The next week has been stressful to say the least. I was anxious about Lia coming back to school, mainly because of Victoria. She started spreading vicious rumors about Lia around school. I almost punched a few guys unconscious when I heard them talking shit about Lia. The stuff some of them have been saying made me boil with anger. But I didn’t confront Victoria about it, even though I knew for sure she’s been the one behind it all.

Lia said she’s not afraid of her and I admire her for her calmness and strength. I plan on showing all those vultures that Lia’s mine once she’s back. I already claimed her, yes, but I want all of those pea-brained fuckers to see us together with their own eyes.

As I lie in my bed, waiting for the sleep to come, I think about what I’m going to do when Lia comes back to school. Her ribs have been better lately, or so she claims, but that doesn’t mean I will leave her alone to become an easy target for Victoria.

The new student is also getting on my nerves. I don’t get a good feeling from him. Throughout the week he’s looked like he was looking for something or someone. He gives off that creepy vibe. I will have to keep him away from Lia. The only problem is that he started training with the football team, so he also joined our table at the cafeteria.

Thinking of cafeteria, I wonder how the hell am I supposed to persuade Lia to sit with me. When I told her I want her to eat with me at lunch, she outright declined, saying she has her favorite place and she likes being left alone while eating. After a short argument, we decided to talk about it later, when she’s at school. I am not giving this up. Victoria and her minions will pick at her if she’s left alone. And I won’t fucking allow that.

Despite not liking this whole fake dating plan in the beginning, I grew used to spending time with Lia. I would even dare to say I started to like her. She fits right in with me and the guys. She’s a great friend that doesn’t care about my reputation and position at school. She just doesn’t give a shit and I think that’s what I like about her the most.

Fuck, I can’t sleep.

I sit up in my bed, leaning my back on the headboard and take the book from my nightstand.

After a while I have trouble following the words on the page, my mind completely unable to concentrate, so I get up and change into my workout clothes and quietly head to the basement, where the gym is. It took so much nagging at my parents for them to agree to build it.

I keep punching my bag until I barely feel my knuckles. I’m covered in sweat, my muscles sore after the hard exercise. I unwrap my hands and go back upstairs, seeing it’s already 5 am, which means I don’t have long before I have to leave for school. I decided to leave a little earlier than usual, since Lia is always first at school and I want to surprise her by picking her up.

The hot water relaxes my strained muscles and I almost sigh in content. I quickly wash my hair, noticing that they’re slightly longer and I need a fresh haircut. Making a mental note to visit my barber later, I leave the shower and head towards my closet, taking the usual set of dark ripped jeans, black t-shirt and leather jacket out.

Once my hair is dry and I’m fully clothed, I go downstairs, where I hear my mom making breakfast. She’s always been an early bird, so I’m not surprised to see her skip around the kitchen. Ever since meeting Lia, my parents have been in way better mood than always. My mom is cheerful and always joking around, especially with me, and my dad has not been his broody, angry self for the whole week. The change in their attitude towards me is surprising, but I don’t complain. I feel like I can finally breathe at ease while I’m home.

“Oh, you’re up early! That’s new.” My mom jokes when she notices me.

“Hey mom. I’m picking up Lia. She’s coming back to school today.”

“Oh, that’s so nice of you. Say hi to her from me. What do you want to eat?” She gushes, smiling gently. I’ve never seen my mom smile as often as she has been this last week.

“Just some toast and eggs maybe. I have to leave soon.”

“With bacon?”

“You know it, mom.” I laugh at her, taking juice from the fridge.

When I arrive at Lia’s house, the first thing I notice is the empty space on her driveway. She’s already left! Damn it!

Turning back around, I drive straight to school. Lia’s about to get an earful; I told her I would pick her up.

As I head towards the lockers, mine being surprisingly close to Lia’s – a fact I never noticed – I see her taking out her books, while listening to music through her earphones and bobbing her head rhythmically. Let’s surprise her. I quietly approach her, staying behind the wide open door of her locker.

She slams the door shut and turns to me, not at all shocked to see me here.

“I knew you were here.” She tells me, taking out her earphones.

“How?” I ask, genuinely curious, since I know she couldn’t have possibly heard me with the loud music.

She gives me a deadpan look and points one finger towards the ceiling, causing me to scrunch my eyebrows in confusion.

“Huh? What?” I don’t understand what she means.

“You cast a shadow.” She tells me seriously.

I laugh at that before I can stop myself. I take the books from her arms in one hand, putting them on mine, and grab her hand in the other as I lead her to our first class, all the while chuckling, earning a quick glare from her in response.

“What’s so funny about that? It’s basic physics. He's so weird.” She mumbles, but I still catch it.

Once we’re in the classroom, with me taking the seat beside Lia instead of my usual one, I scold her for leaving early.

“Why didn’t you wait for me this morning? I told you I would drive you to school.” I don’t even try to hide the slight irritation from my voice, but she doesn’t seem to care.

“And I told you I have a car and I can drive myself. Don’t tell me you actually went to my house!” Now it’s her turn to scold me.

“Yeah, I did. I told you I would.” I don’t back down.

“And I told you not to!”

“And I told you I would! I’m going to drive you to school, end of discussion.” I sternly tell her.

“Don’t give me that shit! I can drive myself, you’re not my chauffeur. Why are you so stubborn about this?!” I can tell she doesn’t like to be told what to do as she gets angry.

“You’re my girlfriend. I WANT to drive you to school, okay?”

“And I WANT to drive myself, okay?!” She mocks my tone.

“You two fight like an old married couple.” Our banter is stopped with a laughing Tyler coming in. “I told you they would be fighting. Pay up.” He turns to Will.

I watch flabbergasted as Will takes out a $100 bill from his pocket and slaps it on Tyler’s outstretched hand.

“You bet on us?” Lia asks form beside me, sounding as bewildered as me.

“Yeah.” Ty laughs. “I said that once you come back to school, we would probably find you two fighting. Obviously, I was right.” He can’t stop laughing at us.

“You guys are crazy.” Lia chuckles, opening her notebook, indicating she’s done talking. The guys sit at the desk in front of us, pulling out their stuff, not minding that they just claimed someone’s seat.

Not even a minute later, the new student comes in and I feel my muscles tense at his mere presence. He looks around the room as always and I almost lose it when I see him grin, his eyes lighting up as he catches the sight of Lia in the seat next to me.

“Sunshine!” he exclaims as he rushes to our seats.

What the fuck?

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