“So you were with that sexy ass man all this time!” I rolled my eyes at her and smiled. We sat on her bed catching up. She was bouncing off the walls.
“Yes and he’s not sexy.”
“You’re shitting me! He is soooo fine!”
“Eli! Ew! He is just my friend.”
“I see because if you guys were having sex you would have walked in here with a huge smile on your face.” I laughed and bumped her shoulder. “So really, how have you been?”
I huffed my breath and laid back on her bed. “I’ve been fucking miserable. I don’t even know why I’m here. They probably came together, spent the whole summer together, fucking.”
“It’s going to be okay, Sweetie. Time heals all things, right?” She laid beside me. “I’m happy you came back. I need you here with me.”
“Yeah, yeah. You’re just happy Ryan’s here.” I gave her a sad smile.
“Yes, I am, but I would have been just as happy if it was just you.”
I was happy that someone was excited to see me, besides Damion of course. It felt good to be wanted in some kind of way after being rejected by someone I loved. I wish he didn’t come back. I could have handled everyone else, especially that bitch Ali. I silently relived the moment I walked in on them, her legs wrapped around his. My heart hurt at the memory.
Eli pulled me from my thoughts, “Hey, you want to grab some to eat. I know you didn’t want to go with them with how they hover. Roman has been searching for you since you left. I thought you’d rather just have you and me.”
“Thanks for the save.”
“I try. Now come on. Let’s go show you off.”
I chuckled as she grabbed my hand and pulled me up. We were laughing so hard when she opened the door that we hadn’t seen Ali leaning in her door frame. She cleared her throat, catching our attention.
“Hey, Emery. What have you been up to? I see you move on pretty quickly.”
Before I can say anything, Eli jumped in front of me. “Do you want to get slapped again? Back the fuck off!”
She folded her arms over her chest. “I just wanted to say that I didn’t know about them. Had I known, I would have just waited until he threw you away, but he came crawling to me, begging for me. I just wished you’d told me how good he felt.” She bit her lip, looking as if she was remembering the moment while tears gathered in my eyes. Eli stalked towards her ready to pummel her face, but I grabbed her before she could reach her. Truth was, they weren’t worth it. That cheating bastard or this whore was not worth it.
Ali’s face was covered in fear at the thought of me releasing Eli. “Eli, she’s not worth it.” I looked Ali dead in the eyes. “She can have him. What is wrong with you? I thought we were friends? Even if you didn’t know, you’re sure not remorseful.”
“What can I say? Maybe you should have just left him alone. You knew I liked him.”
“You never told us that until after he and I got together! I would have never done to you what you did to me!”
“Welp. What’s done is done. He’s mine now.”
“Fuck you. Eli, let’s get out of here.”
Eli jumped at Ali, making her flinch in fear. “Let’s go, babe.”
We walked arm in arm, leaving that bitch lonely. I did feel a little insecure when we walked into the food court. Part of my back was out in this dress so my scars were quite visible. I guess Eli could sense my uncomfortableness.
“What’s wrong?” She asked concerned.
“Nothing.” I shook my head and continued on our path to get some pizza. We were eating our food and talking about how busy we are going to be this semester. I told her I was considering working for Kyle again which she thought was a great idea. I still didn’t tell her about him being shot. I felt a little guilty, but it wasn’t my place to tell her.
“Hey,” a voice interrupted our conversation.
We turned to see a boy standing there. He looked to be a freshman and from the looks of it, his friends talked him into coming over here. They stood a great distance away, staring and snickering like little kids.
“May we help you?” Eli inquired.
“I just thought your friend here was beautiful and I wanted to ask her out.”
“Oh!” Eli looked at me with wide eyes, trying to communicate with me. I know what she was thinking: Get over Lewis by getting under someone new. I just wasn’t ready yet.
I looked at him with a small smile. “I’m sorry, but I just got out of a relationship and I’m not looking to date right now.” Eli kicked my leg under the table. “Ow!”
“You ok?” He looked a mixture of concern and confusion. I gave Eli a hard glare while she plastered on an innocent smile, staring at him.
“I’m fine. Thank you, but no thank you.” That was sweet, but I think I’m taking a break from dating.
He started to walk off to which I was grateful for until I heard him mumble under his breath. I wish I hadn’t heard it, but I did.
He said, “Wow. The scarred, damaged bitch has standards.”
“What did you say!” I rose from my chair.
“You heard me!” His voice rose, catching the attention of some of the other students. “We know that you use to fuck you stepdad and that he whooped your ass when you broke it off to fuck Lewis. There’s a lot of talk around campus. I wonder how much of it is true.” He tsked at me. The onlooking crowd made instigating noises. They were ready for drama while my life was falling apart.
I stood shocked at the knowledge that I was the talk around campus. It wasn’t even true at that. If I am the talk around here then they know about Lewis cheating on me with Ali. I shouldn’t have come back. I was sick of this shit. First, people I cared about betray me and now some unknown, insignificant person made it their mission to embarrass me on my first day back here. All the anger from seeing Lewis and Ali and Roman again was boiling over. I shook with anger. Each heavy step I took towards him was heavy and feet ready to rescind his balls. Out of nowhere, a fist collided with his face and he stumbled with the force.
“Dustin?” I squinted.
He ran a hand through his hair. “Hey, Emery. I like your hair.”
He turned back to the boy as he was just recovering. “What the fuck ar-” the boy stopped mid-sentence. He straightened up into a salute stance. I looked to his friends who were also standing with one hand to their heads. I looked over to Eli who looked just as confused as me and shrugged. “I’m so sorry, Big Brother Almighty!”
“Pledge! You disrespected my friend here so I think you should apologize to her. You know how we apologize, don’t you?” Dustin smirked at me. ” On your knees, pledge.”
“Are you refusing to follow orders, Pledge.” Dustin’s face scrunched up with displeasure.
“No. But she’s a bit-”
“Ahhh. Pledge, give me your pin.”
“No! I’m sorry, Emery! Don’t do this! My dad will kill me.”
“So we live in a world where pledges command their masters? You know what?” He circled him like a predator. The stupid boy flinched in fear. “Give your pin to Emery and she decides whether you stay or not.”
He looked at me pleading. He placed the pin in my hand and I looked down at it, rolling it around in my palm. I looked back at the boy, replaying his words over in my head. I held out my hand and waited for him to reach for it before turning to give it to Dustin. “He’s out.”
Gasps filled the food court. I just wasn’t feeling very generous. This last year changed me. I was pissed off and nothing could relieve it. “Well, you heard her. Fuck off.” The boy dropped his head and walked off. The crowd went back to their food. “I’ll call you later to catch up. I have to call a meeting with the brothers to discuss this change.”
“Sure. My number changed so I need your phone.” He held it out to me. He stared at me the whole time like he could eat me alive. At this point, I actually considered it. I need a little stress relief, but I just don’t think I could do that to myself. I can’t force myself to have sex with someone just to get over that stupid, stupid man.
“I’ll definitely be calling you.” He gave me one last wink.
I blushed. I walked to Eli who had an accusing look spread across her face. We grabbed our containers of food and headed to the car, leaving behind the whispers. "What?"
"All this dick around here and you're worried about those two assholes. Help me help you, babe."
"Eli, I'm good."
"Okay. Maybe we can drug them and make a cast of their penis and you can have both."
"Or we can get you a Fred."
"That's what I named my dildo. He's very...energetic."
"I'm just saying, girl. A little penis might help."
Maybe she's right. Maybe I can just find me a fuck buddy. We'll see how it goes.