Monday, September 22, 2008

GOING GREEN

Conner managed to get out of my driveway before Becker’s car pulled up. I ducked, but I doubt he missed it. I doubt he didn’t just see me stand him up with another guy. THE guy.

“Why do I keep doing this?” I asked.

“Because you like me.” Conner laughed and then reached over to put his hand on my knee. Not in a creepy, date-rape way, but in a comfortable this-is-okay way. I exhaled.

“How’s Trish?” I asked. I was bitter. She’d ripped out a handful of my hair with her redheaded, Tasmanian devil fighting style. I was lucky I still had both of my eyes.

“She’s good,” Conner said quietly.

My stomach turned. I’d wanted to hear, “She’s bad.” Or, “She was disfigured in a motorcycling accident.” Or best yet, “We broke up.” But he didn’t say that. He just said she was good.

“How’s Becker?” he asked.

I looked over at him, his hand still on my knee, a smirk on his lips. I didn’t get it. I didn’t understand why I kept coming back to Conner. Sure, he was hot. And yes, when we weren’t hiding or being physically assaulted, we got along great. Since that first day when he pinged me in the head with a Frisbee.

“Are we in love or something?” I asked, my voice cracking. What? What the hell did I just ask?

Conner squeezed my knee. “Or something,” he answered and turned down the dirt road.
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(And by the way, my nose ring is healing nicely. In case you were worried. )

Monday, September 15, 2008

GOING GREEN (more story blog)

After five rides home from school, twelve phone calls and one rose left on my doorstep, I finally agreed to go on a date with Becker. I would have never pegged him as the romantic type, mostly because I had pegged him as the hot-misunderstood-college-guy. So it was a nice surprise.

And since I was still wishing Conner’s lying, cheating face would fall off, I thought Becker was exactly what I needed. Plus I’d gotten over being mad at him. Sure, he’d outed me to the entire school, got me beat up, humiliated me. But the boy did it for love. There was something almost romantic in that.

Plus Brandi was talking to me again and I was no longer a social leper. That helped dissolve the anger. Besides, Conner was the one with a girlfriend. I was just an innocent bystander. Oh, and a complete idiot for believing anything that came out of his stupid mouth. In fact--

“Stella,” my father called from downstairs. “A car just pulled in the driveway.”

I smiled and checked the mirror one last time. At least my father was finally happy. I was pretty sure he hated Conner more than I did. And I’d made a voodoo doll!

The doorbell rang and I slicked on a coat of lip-gloss and headed for the stairs.

“Don’t wait up,” I yelled toward my father.

“What?”

“Kidding, Dad. I’ll see you in a few hours.”

He mumbled something similar to “Damn straight you will.”

I gave him a wave and then pulled open the door. “Oh my God.”

“Hi.” It was Conner. Looking all blond and sad. Looking… like he wasn’t Becker!

I pushed him back with a cautious glance toward my father, then stepped out on the porch and closed the door.

“Are you a psycho? What are you doing here?” I snapped.

He sighed and I swear, he had the saddest freaking eyes I’d ever seen. “Stella,” he whined. “I don’t want you going on a date with another guy.”
I gasped and stared at him. “You are unhinged. And YOU have a girlfriend.”

Car lights appeared at the end of the road and I knew it was Becker.

“Come on,” Conner said, grabbing my hand and pulling me toward his Jeep.

“Ew, no!”

He turned to me, the headlights illuminating him from behind. He grinned. “Come sneak away with me,” he whispered.

Man. Would I ever learn?
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