Rebecca was lying on the cold tile floor, staring at her smooth white ceiling. She kept thinking about Blake. The look he had given her that say in class was unlike any look he had ever given her. Some guilt was eating her away, though. She had no idea what to do. Blake had been a total jerk to Silvia and then had done something to Lucita. She still couldn’t fight the thought that drifted into her mind.
A knock came at her door, and she figured it was Lucita and Liz with the popcorn and snacks. She sat up and headed for the door. Liz looked normal, as did Lucita, although when the light hit her eyes, she noticed her eyelashes were green.
“What?” Lucita beat her green eyelashes innocently before she comprehended the look and laughed. “Yeah. I have a bunch of different colored mascara. I’m weird, I know.”
“You’re way past weird,” commented Liz, “but it’s why we like you.”
“Hardly ever.” Elizabeth made her way toward the kitchen and grabbed the snack bowls. Lucita followed suit. They set up the food and snacks, and Rebecca looked at her watch. What was taking Silvia so long?
Silvia made her way to Rebecca’s apartment, or at least she was trying to until Jason blocked her way.
“We have to talk.”
“About what? About how you’re crushing big time on Luci? Or how about we talk about how you’re covering for Blake, as always?”
“Stop, okay, just shut up.”
“Look, are you going to listen to me or not?” Silvia rolled her eyes and sat on one of the many benches spread out through the complex.
“Talk, I’ve got someplace to be.”
“Yeah, I know. I’m supposed to be there too. Luci has been getting some scary cryptic text messages, and I know they are from Blake. But I also know Blake is using Tiffany’s help to block his number whenever he sends those texts.”
“Okay, and? God, you’re such an idiot. Why the hell are you always freaking covering for him.”
“Because…look, he’s planning on getting rid of Tiffany.”
Now, this was something else. “How?”
“Tiffany, obviously, is a problem child. She’s not allowed to get into trouble at school, and on her report cards, nothing below a B. She is also not allowed to get into any fights. See where I’m going with this?”
“He plans on setting Tiff up? Seriously? What makes you think Tiff would fall for it.”
Jason’s lips curled into a charming smile. “She already has. Blake hasn’t told her anything about what exactly he’s going.”
“She’ll find out though.”
“Not until it’s too late. Tiff is trying hard to keep her mouth shut as it is. Knowing her, she’ll make a snide comment.”
“And knowing Tiff, they’ll get into a fight.” Silvia sighed and bit her lower lip. “I don’t know if I can keep this a secret from Lucita.”
“You have to. I promised Lu that I wouldn’t tell anyone about the texts.”
Lu? “She told you!” she exclaimed, surprised and hurt. “Why not me. Damn it, Jason, you’re dating—”
“Give it a rest. Yes, I like Lucita; I know I’m dating her friend. Will you give me a break?”
“You shouldn’t have asked Liz out. It’s not fair to her.”
Jason sighed and sat beside her, burying his head in his hands. “Look, I like Liz a lot. And yeah, at the moment, I like Lucita too. Still, Lucita has a boyfriend, not to mention she’s practically in love with that Cyrus guy. Just give me some time. I’ll get over her.”
Silvia snorted. “Yeah, keep telling yourself that.”
“Don’t be condescending.”
“Whatever. Look, Becca, Luci, and your girlfriend are waiting for us.”
“How about you stop rubbing it in.”
“Have you not met me?” she joked, pulling him along.
Tiffany sat poised on Blake’s bed. He would barely look at her, let alone touch her, and she had worn those particular shorts just for him. She placed her delicate legs on his lap. Blake shoved them off. Tiffany didn’t yell at him. She continued to lay there, watching him play Halo, hurt. She thought back to how things used to be.
“How you cheated on me? Yeah, I remember that.”
“Oh come on. Why can’t you just let it go?”
“If I cheated on you, would you let it go?”
“No, it’s not. Just face it already. You’re a cheating witch.”
“No, I’m not,” she said through gritted teeth, trying to contain her anger.
“You cheated on me. You cheated on Lucas. You are a cheating witch who only cares about what you want.”
“Screw you, Blake.”
“Oh will you give it a freaking rest,” interrupted Blake, hitting pause on his game. “You are what you are. Look in a damn mirror. You’re so into Lucas and me again because we are over you, and you have this insane, controlling desire to make yourself the sole object of our affection. You can’t stand that we both like some other chick.” Blake got out of her face and went back to playing his game. Tiffany stared at the back of his head, thinking it all through. She finally surmised that Blake was wrong, just like her parents. They were all wrong, and she would prove it…after she put Lucita back in her place.
Rebecca watched Tiffany between classes. If it weren’t for the fact that she knew the girl was utterly toxic, she would think she was harmless. But she knew better. Tiffany looked up from her phone and smiled at her vehemently before stepping into her classroom. Rebecca rolled her eyes and entered her health class, taking a seat far away from Blake and a closer one to Francis. He usually greeted her with a hello, but today, he barely looked at her, and she wondered if he had something on his mind. As she sat down, she took notice that he was writing.
“Hey, are you writing a poem?”
“My friend Lucita writes poems. She’s really good.”
Francis snorted. “She probably writes girly shit about, I don’t know, butterflies or some shit like that.”
His comment left her stunned and just a little angry. “Actually, no. Her stuff is kind of dark…what’s your problem with her anyway? A few months ago, you were all cool, and I thought you were kind of into her. What’s the deal?”
Francis looked over at her; his wavy black air almost obscured his dark brown eyes and a sad smile.
“I don’t know her.”
“Have you tried talking to her? She’s actually a very nice person.”
“Why is Jason always around her? I thought she was dating Lucas.”
“She is. Jason just likes hanging out with her.”
“Blake says Jason likes her.”
“Since when did you start talking to Blake?”
Francis shrugged and went back to writing his poem. Rebecca kicked his shin. “Francis, don’t believe anything you hear from Blake. Just join Luci and me for lunch. See for yourself what she’s like.” Francis only shrugged at her offer as the bell rang, forcing her to take her seat. Pulling out her notebook, she glanced around the room to see who was there and who wasn’t when she caught Blake staring at her intently. Her face grew hot as she blushed at his smile.
Turning his attention back to the front of the class, Blake thought about Becca. She wasn’t bad to look at and, in many ways, was very similar to Silvia. Maybe he’d give her a shot once he was done with Tiffany and Lucita.
“Seriously, Matthew, are you texting her?” complained Cyrus as he sat in band practice.
“Not at the moment, so chill?” Matthew laughed as he put down his violin. “I don’t see why you can’t just admit it. You like your stalker.”
“She’s not a stalker.”
“Dude! This chick used to follow you to class and the water fountain and stare at you, hiding around the corner. She was a stalker.”
“Ha! You see, I’m right, and don’t hate that I’m right.”
Matthew laughed, nearly falling over. His black hair fell over his eyes, shadowing his face. “You’re so freaking screwed.”
“Not really. Lucita will never know. Off to boarding school with me, remember.”
“Psh.” He sat back, leaning back against the classroom wall. “What was it like? Kissing her in that purple bikini.”
Cyrus looked at his friend strangely before he burst out laughing, nearly falling out of his chair. “You freaking hypocrite! You like her!”
“Don’t be stupid.”
Cyrus punched Matthew in the arm hard, giving him a stern look, knowing, or at least guessing, what sordid thoughts were going through his head. “Don’t screw up her life, or I will beat the crap out of you.”
“I might take that threat seriously if I liked her.”
“You freaking creep, and you give me grief about liking her.”
“I’ve got nothing to say,” he sneered. “Maybe I’ll say something when you’re away at boarding school.” As Matthew laughed, something inside Cyrus snapped. He punched Matthew with enough force to knock him forward, almost off his seat. Matthew groaned in pain, and he gripped his stomach.
“Stay the hell away from her. If I find out you touch her, I will come back and beat you down, I swear.”
“Screw you, Cyrus,” coughed Matthew. He spit at the ground. “You need to get off your high horse.” Cyrus looked up at the opening door. A few people noticed the punch. A few people even gave him a thumbs up for it, mostly girls, but no one said a word. Cyrus smiled as he pulled out his clarinet alongside his sheet music. Matthew followed suit with his violin, shooting him a resentful look.
Lucita found herself thinking of Cyrus as she sat at lunch. Her stomach was growling a bit, but she wasn’t hungry. Jason sat next to her and offered her his apple. She waved it away, feeling sick.
“Are you okay?”
“Yeah…no. I don’t know. I feel sick. It sucks.”
“You look tired.”
Lucita offered him a weak smile as she looked up at him. One of her long black bangs fell over her face, and Jason moved it behind her ear before she could blow it out of the way. Lucita didn’t like how he was staring at her, and she didn’t like how her stomach pinched in response. His blue-green eyes were gorgeous, and she noticed a freckle beneath his right eye.
“You have a freckle,” she laughed.
“Yeah. Mom says it’s from skateboarding out in the sun. I freckle from time to time.”
“Thanks.” The door opened, and they both jumped. Rebecca and Silvia stepped onto the platform and looked at the both of them warily. Jason scooted away, and Lucita pushed the bad thought out of her head. Jason was…was what? Her best friend’s boyfriend, that’s what. She felt sicker.
“Hey, you guys,” said Lucita, pulling her knees to her chin.
“Hey,” stammered Rebecca. She didn’t know what else to say, let alone think. First, these two hated each other, and now they looked like they were about to kiss. Rebecca gave Jason a concerned look while he pulled out his cell phone.
“Who are you texting, Jason,” she inquired.
“That’s good,” muttered Lucita, smiling. He nodded without looking at her.
“Well, how is Liz,” asked Silvia.
“Cool. Ya know, Liz is really, really, happy that you two are dating. Oh my god, it was insane how much she would whine about you not asking her out, especially when she li-ow!” Lucita kicked Silvia in the shin and gave her “that” look. Silvia bit her tongue, worried she hadn’t said too much. Apparently, Jason hadn’t been paying that much attention to her.
“Uh huh,” commented Lucita. “She really likes you.”
“Yeah…I’ll, uh, talk to her later. I’m sort of—”
“Distracted,” snickered Silvia. Lucita gave her another one of her looks mixed with annoyance. Silvia was talking too much, she thought to herself as she stretched out her legs, legs that Silvia saw Jason stare at. Even she had to admit her legs were beautifully toned.
“Funny, Vee, have you spoken to Blake lately.”
“Nice, Jason. Have you?”
Jason shrugged. “Unfortunately.”
“How about we not talk about Blake,” commented Lucita. She looked away from all of them. Rebecca still wondered what exactly had happened in the stairwell. Neither Jason nor Lucita would talk about it.
“Well, anyway,” began Rebecca before Jason stood up. “Jason, what’s up?”
“I’m going for a walk. I’ll see you guys later.” Lucita waved goodbye to him, and Silvia caught her looking after him as he walked away. This time, she kicked her shin and gave her “that” look.
“How’s Lucas Lu?”
New Girl (Memoirs of the Third Floor #1)
Lucita is starting at a new school. Silvia is keeping a secret. Rebecca is struggling with herself. Three girls and their friends have entered high school, and for each of them, it’s hard enough without having to deal with friends, betrayal, and their insecurities. High School is tough enough without having to be the new girl.
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