Home > Fake It 'Til You Break It(2)

Fake It 'Til You Break It(2)
Author: Meagan Brandy

With his last word, an angry, almost annoyed, arrogance slips into his gaze, and I realize I’m being mocked.

“I don’t need your help getting his attention.”

“You sure about that? You’re not exactly the forward type.”

I glare. “Don’t pretend you know me.”

“Don’t forget, I do.”

“Did,” I correct in a low hiss. “Past tense.”

Nico leans forward, his frown sliding between mine with unmistakable tenacity, but his lips remain sealed.

I eye him a moment, slowly moving my focus back to my paper. “Whatever, I don’t care what you think of me.”

“Lies.”

His instant response has my head jerking his way again.

Now it’s him who glares. “You care what people think, it’s why you’re friendly to everyone when they don’t deserve it. Like Alex Hammons, for example.”

“It’s called human decency, you should try it sometime, and I didn’t ask your opinion, nor do I care what you think of me or Alex or anyone else for that matter.”

“You care he’s still lookin’ back?” he quips.

He is?

A quiet scoff leaves him, confirming my curiosity isn’t hidden well.

“’Course you do.” Leaning even closer, a tight scowl in place as he tips his head all cocky like. “Go on, D. Look at him,” he dares. “See if what I’m saying is true, you know you want to.”

My lips press into a firm line and I’m damn near twitching to know if he’s lying or not, but I cover my interest with a glare while commanding my eyes to my paper. It takes all my strength to keep them there.

Nico’s low, snide chuckle is proof my struggle isn’t lost on him.

I kick him under the table when five minutes later, he rasps, “Your boy’s lookin’ again.”

Asshole.

 

 

“Hey, girl, hey!” my friend Krista announces herself as she drops down at our usual lunch spot, a grassy area in the quad.

“You’re quite excited to have been given a seven-page essay in English,” my best friend Carley whines, not bothering to open her eyes as she lays there, soaking up the California sun.

“Oh, girl, that’s not due for another three weeks.” Krista snags a bag of chips from the pile of shit in the middle of us.

“Meaning you’ll start it in two weeks and three days,” our other friend Macy sasses back, making the four of us laugh.

“Exactly.” Krista grins. “But no, I’m peppy because I heard from a bird that you, Miss Demi, were paired with hottie McHot Nico Sykes in chem today.”

Carley’s eyes pop open and she sits up. “Um... what?” She gapes. “Why didn’t you say anything?”

I ignore her a minute and talk to Krista. “Does this bird happen to be a six-foot-something quarterback you like to call daddy when no one is around to hear it?”

Her jaw drops, and she leans over to shove me backward, laughing at the same time. “Yes, bitch, it does, and I told you that in secret!”

“You told us all that.” Macy rolls her eyes.

Krista only grins wider. “Yeah, but secret means you don’t say it out loud.”

I smile and she sticks her tongue out in response.

“K, back on track. Come on, Demi,” Macy coaxes.

I shrug, tearing the stem off a strawberry and stuffing it in my mouth. “What do you want me to say, I’m annoyed.”

“Annoyed?” Macy purses her lips. “Please, don’t lie. Even you can’t be immune to the boy and his every single thing.”

“Fuck you.” I laugh. “What the hell does that mean?”

“It means your vagina must be dead and in need of reviving if not even Nico Sykes gets you going. His fingers alone must be shrimp dick size, and not in a fugly way. If they’re that long, imagine the range of the rest of him!”

My jaw drops and then a loud laugh leaves me, earning a satisfied grin from her.

“My vagina is just fine, I assure you, and it has nothing to do with him not being attractive, because duh.”

Nico is as perfect as his running game, which is flawless.

He’s tall and broad, muscular but not overly so, more full and strong. He has high cheekbones with perfectly thick lips, dark, sandy color hair with darker, always intense eyes. There’s this taunting look forever staring back, one he wants spotted but never allows you to decrypt.

He’s far from a typical senior, screams experienced and likely has grown women wondering if he’s legal enough or not. I’m sure the tattoo etched into the inner part of his right arm is answer enough for them.

He’s ESPN billboard material and he knows it.

“So, you admit you think he’s hot.” Macy nods, proud. “What’s the problem?”

“I needed a good partner, one I could trust to do what they say they will.” I shrug. “Everyone knows Mr. Brando is the toughest teacher here, always unorthodox, and I can’t afford to fail. My mom will wring my damn neck if my grades slip and it’ll be back to medication keeps you focused before I can even blink.”

“Oh please, you’re focused on your own. She has to stop putting all of her screw-ups on your shoulders,” Krista says.

“She already thinks I’m putting too much time into dance, if I fall behind in this class, who knows what she’ll pull.”

“Fuck your mom.” Carley frowns.

“Someone needs to,” Macy mumbles.

The girls laugh, but my head tugs back in disgust causing them to laugh harder.

“Okay, but back up.” Carley leans forward. “We know you can’t fail, and we know you’d never allow yourself to, but how do you know Nico is a bad partner?”

“We’ve always known him to ditch full days, which means he misses whatever’s happening in class, so I have no reason to believe this year will be different, and besides that, have you ever seen him pay attention in a class that isn’t PE?” I joke.

“Have you ever had him in a class that wasn’t PE?” Carley calls me out on my judgment. “Have you had him in a class at all since junior high?”

I pause to think, and she raises her brows like an asshole.

“Whatever.” I shake my head. “Maybe he’s not a crappy student, obviously he’s eligible to play football, so he must keep at least a baseline grade point average, but still. If he isn’t here every day like I am, I’ll have no choice but to carry more of our workload. Not only that, he and I don’t talk anymore, and on the rare occasion we’re forced to, it’s small jibes or he goes straight up mannequin on me.”

“Maybe he doesn’t know what to say?”

I give her a blank look. “He thinks he’s a candy bag and all girls have his kind of sweet tooth, and when you don’t, you’re as worthy as a wallflower.”

“I’d take a piece if offered.” Macy nods, her lips pursed.

I laugh, shaking my head while Krista pats her knee patronizingly.

“We know, sweetheart, we know,” she teases.

“It’s not even about Nico, is it?” Carley suspects. “You wanted to be Alex’s partner again.”

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