I have decided that I hate school, I’m not made for tiny classrooms with annoying teachers and cheerleaders who are all about the cut. I’m starting to hate the leather that I wear everyday because it brings too much attention.
They’re the only family I’ve ever had but the way that everyone here sees it drives me insane. The girls like it because of the danger and excitement and the guys hate it because the girls like it.
Lexie says that I shouldn’t entertain the thought of the girls that flock to the cut, that they’re likely to run the minute things get hard and only like the cut when it’s mysterious. But when they see the real extent of the world that they won’t be able to handle it. I figure she knows what she’s talking about so I have my fun and leave before they think they are my Old Lady.
If I had turned up at this school before the summer as the club had planned, I’m sure the reaction wouldn’t have been the same.
I have grown a lot since then with Reign, Breaker and Runner on me all the time about how much I can lift. Runner and I are almost the same size now so he’s backed out and left me to finish weight training with the other two.
It’s agony, I’ll admit that and they don’t let me tap out until my muscles are legitimately screaming. It’s cruel but effective.
Right now, I’m driving one of Saviour’s cars to school. She’s the only one that owns cars and has amassed a large collection, I stole her Range Rover - the older model from like 2004 - because it’s automatic and I’m lazy.
We also have to earn our bikes and that comes with the official cut instead of the prospect one on my back now. So, for now, I'm driving cars.
I pull into a space near the back so if I sneak out later the front office won’t know. We’ve just come back from a short break for Thanksgiving and I spent the entire time working out and helping Gears at the garage - I hate it there but they needed the extra help over the holidays and I do as I’m told.
There are quite a few prospects now after the massive fight we had with another chapter and we’re all competing for positions. Hendrix got kicked out, Emmett left for bigger and brighter things, leaving the rest of us battling for it. I know I’ve got a shoe in because the women love me and they control the club more than the men.
I stay sat in my car until the bell rings because I hate everybody and getting out will mean they can talk to me, also I hate class so I will take every opportunity to be late.
I stroll slowly over the grounds to the building, I pass a small framed girl with pink hair who seems incredibly focused on the art book in front of her, completely oblivious to the manic world around her.
I envy her for that.
I debate going over there to tell her class has started but she seems so serene that I leave her to it. I end up in math a few minutes late and as per the usual Mr Knobhead - don’t know his name but that’s what Saviour called him after meeting him at the parent teacher conferences, to his face by the way - freaks out.
“You’re late again, Chance!” I just roll my eyes and take my seat at the back, hating my fucking life. I swear math just shouldn’t be a thing, especially not for people like me that can look at numbers and letters and see gibberish.
He brushes over this late because it’s the first day back and because he knows it won’t make me turn up on time tomorrow.
It’s another twenty minutes of algorithms before the small framed girl from this morning opens the door, still looking down at her book and not paying attention to the glare Knobhead has turned on her.
“Why are you late, Miss?”
“Hm, what? Sorry, I was busy.” Her voice is as soft as her features, with big silver eyes and long lashes, pink lips and blushed cheeks.
She isn’t being sarcastic or snarky, it’s almost vacant as she speaks, like she’s not interested in being here.
“Too busy for math class? Who do you think you are?”
“Oh! Sorry, I’m Nova.” She digs around her bag and brings out what I assume her transcripts. She doesn’t seem fazed by the laughs that scatter the room at her response and is more preoccupied with her sketchbook.
“I don’t care what your name is, go and sit down. Never interrupt my class with your excuses again.”
“Sure.” She takes the only free seat in the class next to Bree, one of the cheerleaders that is actually nice to people but they don’t even acknowledge each other.
Nova’s sketch book is open instead of her textbook and I admire her for that, it seems she hates this as much as I do. The lesson is minutes away from ending when Knobhead realises she’s spent the lesson drawing and snatches the book from her in anger.
She doesn’t even flinch or reach for it, just tilts her head in silent confusion as he peruses the pages. Whatever he comes across seems to salve his anger as he just writes something in it and slides it back to her without saying a word.
The bell rings again and I go to put my books back into my bag when they end up in the arms of the Quarterback, Dallas. Now, when I first started here I didn’t have a problem with him, if anything I figured we could get along, but now if I was allowed to carry a gun without Runner or Bear beating my ass, I’d kill him.
“I think he’ll need these for next lesson, don’t you Finn?” Finn is a line backer and is pretty big. I could take him if I tried but his sheer size crushes the opponents on the field. He’s not all there though so he basically just does what he’s told to do.
“Yeah.” Finn agrees, not knowing what he’s actually agreeing to, and takes my books and leaves. Like walks out of the class with them, no care in the world.
Idiots, I swear.
“Here.” Nova hops over to me with a soft smile on her face and hands me my books back. “I uh don’t think he noticed when I swiped them on his way out.”
“Thanks.” She disappears a few seconds later and I head to American history. I turn up fifteen minutes late this time but Mrs Lehvoss doesn’t even notice when I slip into the classroom and into my seat.
We get a small break before more class and finally we’re released for lunch. I plant my ass at my table with Louis and Mark, they are the only people I can tolerate in this shithole and I appreciate their company. I find myself looking for a head of pink hair which would stick out in this field of blonde but come up with nothing.
“You looking for the hot new chick?” Mark asks and I look over at him with a raised eyebrow, “What? I’d 100% fuck her, you think she’d go for me?” I punch him, hard.
“Don’t be a dick, man.”
“Ow! That fucking hurt? Do you forget you’re built like a fucking tank and trained in martial arts?”
“Nah, it wouldn’t be effective if it didn’t hurt.” I smirk at him and swipe some of his food just because I can.
“Where is she anyway? Surely she’ll be with the cheerleaders soon enough? She’s pretty.” See, Louis is the gentleman of the group. He’s not a womaniser and spends almost all of his time reading or writing code. I think Romeo would love him but the guys haven’t been to the club yet so I wouldn’t know for sure.
“Who are you talking about? Me?” Callie is a tall, beautiful girl with long blonde hair and blue eyes. She’s everyone’s dream girl. Just not mine. I mean, she’s a cheerleader and normally quite nice, especially if you catch her on a good day but sometimes she can be downright malicious.
Maisie, a little mousy girl who Louis had a thing for, can attest to her cruelty. She was degraded so badly online that she had to leave the country just because she accidentally spilled juice on Callie’s favourite blouse. Anyway, after that I lost all respect for her and can no longer hold a conversation with her without wanting to cry.
I told Saviour about it and she wanted to report her for what happened but Maisie really didn’t want it to get worse and her parents are rich so they didn’t mind moving. “No, the new girl.”
“Nova.” I correct still searching for her in the crowd, most of which are looking our way. Callie is one of the cheer captains and they ‘ship’ her with me because Lucy, the other captain, is with the quarterback. She’s actually nice as well but she’s gotta put up with that idiot.
“Whatever. Anyway, there’s a party this weekend, you coming?”
“Can’t. Rider party, no time.” I try to keep my sentences short and monotonous with her so that she can’t read into them. Plus, I’m terrible at lying and this is a bold faced lie. We had a party two weeks ago for my birthday and we still haven’t recovered from it.
“Are we invited?” My jaw drops as I look up at the blonde cheerleader, the bright blue bow in her hair drawing my attention.
“No.” I pack my stuff up and walk out, deciding to sit out on the green because Callie is petrified of birds and pigeons gather out here to catch falling food. I head towards the big tree and find a pink haired girl tucked into the large roots with her sketchbook open and her coloured pencils scribbling away on the page. “Hey.”
“Oh hi.” She doesn’t look up from the book as I drift closer to her to look over her shoulder at what she’s doing. “Do you know this person’s name?” She shows me an extremely realistic portrait of Lawrence, the student president, I don’t really talk to him but Louis does.
“That’s Lawrence Smith, student prez.” She writes his name in the corner of the page and begins flicking through pages to the start. On the first page is Mr Knobhead, which he has signed himself as Roger Knapp. We go through eleven different portraits, some of teachers and some of students and I tell her who everyone is.
“Thank you, I’m sorry. I remember faces perfectly but I can never remember names, where I’m from it never mattered...” I decide not to question it so I don’t make her uncomfortable and she smiles up at me. “You’re Leo, right?”
“You know my name?” She flicks to the back of her sketchbook and shows a picture of me sitting in the car this morning, it looks like a picture almost and I’m impressed by her talent.
“You are memorable.” She just smiles before packing up her stuff and leaving school grounds.
What the fuck do I do with myself after someone as gorgeous as her says something like that to me of all people?