Curly Headed Cutie

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Chp. 10: A Bunch Of Weirdos

“Nice touch adding the monocle to Christian face,” Travis chuckles, “OH! And don’t forget the eyeliner.”

“That was some of my best work drawing that monocle.” I state, proudly, “And that eyeliner? I can’t even do my own that good. I was lowkey jealous.”

Travis laughs a little harder, “You were jealous?”

“It’s true! I was about ready to wipe it off, and make it look bad on purpose.”

He laughs harder, and I shrug joining him. He finally calms down after a few seconds, “So that’s why you just had to take a picture of it. I just thought you wanted to use the photo as extortion against Christian.”

“What? No! I would never!” I reply, narrowing my eyes at him, smiling, “That’s something you would do.”

“Aw! You know me so well!”

I roll my eyes, grinning, and he shoots me a wink. I turn to face him, “What would I even blackmail him for? I literally just met him.”

“Of course you wouldn’t extort him right now. But I’m talking about in the future. Once you’ve been around him for a while, you can start doing that to him. It’s a natural thing in the group, you’ll see.”

“Yeah, and I want no parts of it!” I laugh, raising a brow. He chuckles, “I’m telling you, one day you will.”

“I don’t think I will, but whatever,” I state, laughing.

“Okay. Oh! Since we’re still on the topic of Christian’s face,” He says, and I laugh, as he continues, “What about my mustache? Was it good?”

A proud smirk plays on his lips, as he says with confidence, “Because I thought so. I thought it looked fan-fucking-tastic.” I look over at him and stare, thoughtfully, for a long moment.

“It was mediocre. You could’ve done better.” I state, shrugging. His jaw drops, and I giggle as he pretends to be offended.

“I’m no Picasso, but damn,” He replies, and I laugh harder, “I worked pretty damn hard on that mustache if I do say so myself. But if that’s how you really feel, then yours was mediocre too.”

“NUH-UH! Not my eyeliner, or my monocle!”

“Well of course not your eyeliner, I’m a man. I don’t know how to do that shit. And second, if my mustache was mediocre, so was your monocle.”

“Frist of all, you said my monocle was a nice touch, so are you mad or nah? And second, dudes can do it, what makes you think you can’t?”

“Because I’m not those ‘dudes’.”

“I could teach you how to do eyeliner! It’s not that hard! All you have to do is-”

“Nah, I’m good. I’m so good on that.”

I giggle, and he shakes his head at that thought, “I’m sure you’d look good in eyeliner.”

“Hell. No. I rather not look like I’m in a Linkin Park band.”

I laugh aloud, and suddenly, my phone vibrates. I jump, pulling it out of my pocket, and scrolling through my notifications.

My phone’s been on silent all day, and I just turned it back on when I go in the car. I gasp as I notice a bunch of missed calls from Amelia, aka my manager.

WAIT! I HAD WORK TODAY?!!

“Shit!” I hiss, immediately calling her back, “Hello?”

“WHY DID YOU NOT SHOW UP FOR WORK?!!” She screams, and I cringe. “I forgot I even had work today.” I state, truthfully, rubbing my forehead tiredly, “It totally slipped my mind, I am so sorry.”

“Better be! Today was rush hour!!” She yells, and I awkwardly clear my throat, “We needed you today, and you were nowhere to be seen!!”

“Yeah, I know,” I reply, sighing, “I know that you’re upset with me and if you want to fire me-”

“WOAH!” She interrupts, and I raise a brow, “No one said I was going to fire you. You’re way too good of an employee to fire.”

My brows furrow, as she continues, “Look, you may be completely useless at the end of the day, but today was just one screw-up.”

We’re just going to pretend that she didn’t just call me useless...

“And one screw-up is not enough to fire you since you have a history of being a good employee. Always on time, never missing work. Plus, we’re running low on staff members, so I can’t do that to the business. So, I’ll let it slide just this once. Do this again, and you can kiss your job goodbye.”

I sigh with relief, “Thank you, Amelia, and trust me, this won’t happen again.”

Thank God I didn’t lose my job!

I need to pay for my future college!

The University of Akron, right here in Ohio! It’s a school of arts and sciences with a 73% acceptance rate. It offers 4 years and it’s the best university in the state, and I want to be a member!

However, it cost $17k to get in, so...

I hang up the phone and set it down in my lap. I lay my head back into my seat, as Travis raises a brow, asking, “Um...if you don’t mind me asking, what was that about?”

“Work...” I mumble, my curly hair falling in my face, “I almost got fired. I forgot I had to work today.” Travis goes silent as he parks the car in front of my house.

He sits back in his seat, running his hand through his black hair. He then replies, awkwardly, “Sorry about that...”

I look over at him and burst out into a fit of laughter.

A blush suddenly spreads across his cheeks as he looks everywhere but at me, “Can you not laugh at me. I kinda feel bad for almost getting you fired.”

Not used to seeing him blush like that, lol.

I shake my head, pushing up my glasses, “You don’t have to apologize for anything. It’s my fault for forgetting.”

“Yeah, but I still dragged you on this trip, so...”

“True, but...”

I turn to face him, and smile feeling nervous, “I...uh...I had a lot of fun...hanging out with you and the others tonight. So...you don’t have to feel bad. I take the full blame for almost losing my job.”

A soft smile plays on his lips, and I blush. I awkwardly look away, slicking a strand of my curly hair behind my ear. Tension builds, and I nervously play with my fingers.

Say something, damnit!!

“Good,” He states, and I look back over at him, “I’m glad you had a fun time. I did too.” I silently let out a sigh of relief, and smile at him, “Yeah?” He nods, and nudges me, “Yeah. We should do this again sometime.”

He’s asking if we should hang out again!!!

I might be blowing this out of proportion seeing as that’s what I do 24/7...

But it’s a big deal for me!

Act aloof...

My blush deepens as I nod, pretending to be nonchalant, “Yeah? I’ll think about it.”

He narrows his eyes at me, as I unbuckle myself, “You’ll think about it?” I look back at him, also narrowing my eyes, “That’s what I said, didn’t I?”

“Alright, Miss Sassy, I’ll let you think about it.” He says, backing away slightly.

I laugh, as I open the car door. I step out and walk around the car to his window. He rolls it down, smirking as I state, “Goodnight, Travis.” I turn to walk away, but Travis calls out to me, “WAIT!”

I turn back around, as he asks, “In all seriousness...do you...do you wanna hang out again? I mean, the group is going to want to see more of you, so...”

I stare at him, and he begins avoiding my gaze. He scratches the back of his head and plays with the ring on his finger. He clears his throat, as I suddenly smile.

Is he nervous?

I nod, “Yeah, we can hang out again.” He looks back into my eyes, as I state, “I’d like that.” His eyes light up, but his face remains calm, “Cool. I was hoping you’d say yes.”

“But I’d only be hanging out with May and Stormy.”

Gasping, he pretends to be offended, “You don’t mean that! Say it ain’t so!” I giggle, as he continues, “I’m adorable, it’s impossible not to want to hang out with me.”

The arrogance is real...

I roll my eyes, giving him a little wave, “Goodnight, Travis.”

I turn and begin walking to my porch as Travis replies, ” ’Night, Tiny! And I know you didn’t mean what you said about Stormy and May.”

I look over my shoulder at him as I walk onto my porch and to the front door, “Sure I didn’t!”

I unlock the door and push it open. I look back at Travis one last time, playfully glaring at him, “Goodnight, Travis!”

I step inside closing the door behind me. I bite my bottom lip and find myself smiling like an idiot. I push up my glasses, locking the door.

“So...where’ve you been?”

I jump, turning around. Daniel stands in front of me, arms crossed, shirtless, and one stern look on his face. I stare back at him, awkwardly, my whole face becoming flushed.

Well, I’m screwed...

“Huh?” I reply, nervously, “OH! I, uh, went...OUT! Yeah! I went out with friends.”

Kill me now...

He narrows his eyes, obviously not buy what I had said, “Yeah?” I nod, vigorously, playing with my sweater sleeves.

“Okay, sounds cool...” Daniel says, nodding slowly, “but riddle me this...” He takes a step forward and asks, raising a brow, “What friends??”

Isn’t that a good question!!!

*Internal panic*

“From school...” I reply, timidly. I look him up and down, and find myself to be suddenly curious, “I thought you were going to a party?”

“Police got called.” He sighs, annoyed, “Everyone went home, and I’m surprised Travis wasn’t there. He usually crashes every party we go to, just to piss me off I bet. Like the petty asshole, he is...”

I laugh nervously at that, pushing up my glasses., "Welp..."

That’s because he was hanging out with me...

"Um...how'd you get in? The door was locked..." I ask, voice barely a whisper.

"My bedroom window, and not because Travis had climbed through bedroom window before and everyone thought it was badass..." He explains, eyes avoiding my gaze.

What???

"I never said anything about that-"

“This isn't about me!! So stop changing the subject!!” Daniel suddenly blurts, his brown eyes narrowed, “Amelia called me saying you didn’t show up to work and wasn’t answering your phone. The guys and I were looking everywhere for you when we left the party. We looked at your baking class thing, you weren’t there. We went to your favorite smoothie shop, you weren’t there. Luka tried calling you, Simon tried calling you, I tried calling you, Sebastian tried calling you. Hell, Sebastian nearly had a panic attack looking for you. You know he worries about you like a parent worries about their kid.”

“I know, I know. I just lost track of time, plus my phone was on silent, so...” I reply, awkwardly, slicking a strand of my curly hair behind my ear, “Sorry for making you guys worry...”

Daniel’s eyes soften and he sighs. He wraps an arm around my shoulders and pulls me into a side hug.

Giving me a light squeeze, Daniel mumbles gently, “It’s all right. Just be more responsible next time...”

“That’s funny coming from you,” I laugh, looking up at him, “You literally are the least responsible guy I know.”

He looks down at me and smirks, playfully, “I am too responsible. Just ask Sylvia about what we did tonight. I was responsible enough to use protec-”

I push him off me, feeling grossed out, “Goodnight, Daniel.”

I walk off to the back of the house, and onto the bathroom to wash my hands. Daniel laughs, hysterically, “What?! Was it something I said?!”

*************************************************

Next-Day...

“Who’s excited about food??? I’m excited about food!!” Sebastian sings as he, Simon, Luka, and I walk toward the cafeteria. He bobs his head back and forth, his long dreads falling in his face, "Who's excited about food??? I'm excited about food!!!"

“You’re always excited for food,” Simon replies, texting away on his phone.

“Always,” Luka adds, laughing. We get near my locker, and I pull it open. I throw my textbooks inside, as the boys all talk with one another. As I close my locker, I can’t help but feel like someone is staring at me.

I don’t know why...

I look to my right and find Travis talking with Joshua, Christian, and Jamie. I notice him glance over in my direction and he grins. He looks me up and down, and I instantly blush.

I look away, feeling my glasses begin to slide down my nose.

“Fuck. Travis and his damn crew are right over there,” Sebastian mumbles, scowling. He glances over at them since they’re not too far away.

“Great. Let’s just get a move on before they have something to say,” Simon grumbles, looking up from his phone. Luka nods in agreement, and I suddenly feel awkward.

They have no idea that I was hanging out with them yesterday, I almost feel bad...

I look back at them, “You guys go ahead without me. I have to do something real quick...” They all stare at me concerned, and I raise a brow in confusion, “What?”

“You sure you want to stay here near that asshole and his weird-ass friends?” Sebastian asks, nodding toward him. “Yeah, I don’t know if that’d be the best idea,” Simon agrees, brows furrowed. His black hair falling in his face as he slips his phone into his pocket.

“Guys, it’s okay. It’ll be really quick. I won’t talk to them.”

Lies.

“You sure Tiff?” Luka asks, staring into my eyes, concerned. I nod, “Yeah, go ahead.” They look to one another for a moment and finally sigh.

“Alright. We’ll be outside at the picnic tables,” Sebastian replies, apprehensively, “Maybe Daniel’s already there if he’s done flirting with the cheerleaders...”

They all turn to walk off further down the hall, shooting glares and nasty looks toward Travis and the others.

I watch as they disappear into the crowd and let out a breath I didn’t even realize I was holding. I close my locker and look back over at Travis who’s already looking at me. I blush profusely, and he smiles softly.

He makes his way over with Joshua, Christian, and Jamie. He stands in front of me, looking down to meet my eyes, “What up, Shorty.”

“YO TIFF!!” Joshua hoots and Jamie just rolls his eyes at him, “WHAT’S UP!!!” Jamie looks to me and smiles sweetly, “Hey, Tiffany.”

“Hey, guys,” I reply, smiling a little. I glance around the hall as they stand in front of me, noticing people looking at us.

Of course, they are...

“Couldn’t help but notice you were staring at me from across the room,” Travis says, pulling me out of my thoughts. I shift my stare at him, and narrow my eyes, “Oh, so I was the one staring?”

He nods, smugly, saying in a matter-of-fact tone, “Yeah! I saw you. You couldn’t keep your eyes off me.”

I laugh, shaking my hair from my face, “I’ll let you think that sense it bothers you so much.”

Leaning in, Travis whispers, voice low and husky and a hint of amusement in his eyes, ” I never said that that bothered me~”

My eyes widen at that statement, his bright green eyes glued on mine and our faces inches apart. I gulp, feeling sweaty suddenly.

OH JESUS!!!

THE SHIVERS THAT JUST SHOT DOWN MY SPINE!!?!

I laugh nervously and gently push him away, “W-W-Well, I’m glad t-t-to hear that...”

“Travis, stop teasing the poor girl,” Christian says, shoving him. He then smiles at me, “Anyway, it’s good seeing you again Tiff. Especially after last night.”

I laugh awkwardly, “No hard feelings, right??” He playfully glares at me, and I continue to nervously laugh. Travis then nudges me, smiling, “Hey, if you’re not busy, you should come back to the spot with us. May and Stormy will be there.”

Going back to the spot...imagine how fun that’d be!!

I would like to go, but I have cooking class after school...

But...missing one day wouldn’t hurt, right???

“Yeah! I’d love to go!” I reply, excitedly, “And, um...if you don’t mind me asking, where are May and Stormy?”

“McDonald’s,” Jamie sighs, crossing his arms, “they’re addicted to that place...”

I don’t blame them...

“Then it’s settled! I’ll be by to pick you up,” Travis grins, and I nod.

“Yeah. I guess so.”

“You should get in the water this time, it feels so good,” Joshua swoons, and I giggle. “Nah, I think I’ll be okay just watching,” I reply, pushing up my glasses. “Same!” Christian agrees, “I hate being in bacteria-infested water.”

“But you drink it on a daily,” Travis states, confusion on his face. “Nope! I drink bottled water!” Christian protests, smiling proudly, “Faucet water can kiss my ass!!”

“Oh yeah. You like that expensive water.” Travis mutters, rolling his eyes, “Let me guess, Aquafina?”

“Voss.”

“What about Dear Park?” Jamie asks, curious. Christian shakes his head, “Ew! No. I’ll only drink Voss and Fiji.”

“Weird ass...” Travis mumbles, dumbfounded. “Water is water. How is one going to taste better than the other?” Joshua asks, confused.

“It just does!” Christian retorts and suddenly everyone begins arguing.

“Christian, water is water.”

“And water has assorted flavors when bottled!!”

“It does?”

“They tasted the same to me...”

“You’re so fucking weird...”

“Please elaborate...”

“Why are you guys judging me?!”

“Because there’s no logic behind this!!”

“Yes, there is!”

I laugh at them, just listening.

They’re a bunch of weirdos...

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