Table of Contents
Berkley JAM titles by Megan Stine
PROM NIGHT: MAKING OUT
PROM NIGHT: ALL THE WAY
THE BERKLEY PUBLISHING GROUP
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Berkley JAM trade paperback edition / January 2007
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Prom night : all the way / Megan Stine.
Summary: After moving to a new school her senior year, Carmen would do nearly anything to get a date to prom, but when a very popular classmate blogs that she went all the way on their first date and it seems all hope is lost, unless she can get a role in the school play and the atttention of her secret crush.
eISBN : 978-1-101-14393-3
[1. High schoolâFiction. 2. SchoolsâFiction. 3. TheaterâFiction. 4. PromsâFiction. 5. Interpersonal relationsâFiction. 6. Washington (D.C.)âFiction.] I. Title.
It's one thing to be desperate to go to the promâso desperate that you'd do almost anything to get a date.
It's a totally different thing to break every rule in the book and do the outrageous, out-of-control stuff I did at my senior prom.
If you had told me four weeks ago that I would deliberately rip a slit halfway up the side of my dress so I'd look like a cross between Britney Spears on her honeymoon and Paris Hilton on an average day, and then throw myself at some guy on prom night, offering to give him wild sexual favors like he'd only ever read about in magazines, I'd have said you were insane.
But that was four weeks ago.
A lot can happen in four weeks.
I guess the whole thing started the day Rachel McInerney and I were hanging out in the spare studio over my parents' garage, which is the only place I can stand to be these days. I'll spare you the boring details, but my parents are deep into renovating the house we live inâthat's what my dad does for a living. He buys older houses, fixes them up, and then sells them for a ton more money. Then we move to a new house in the same town and start the whole thing over. It's cool if you don't mind living in chaos and eating a lot of sawdust.
Anyway, the last time my dad sold our house, my parents couldn't find anything else to buy. So after living our whole lives in a small town south of Cleveland, Ohio, we packed up and moved to another town about twenty miles away.
I had to change schools just a week into the beginning of my senior year. It totally sucked.
Welcome to my life, a little something I call Senior Hell.
“I'm just going to have to crash the prom,” I told Rachel as we sat in the studio on a warm Friday in April. Rachel is my best friend from my old school, so I didn't have to spell out for her that I meant
crash the prom at our old school, not the new one
. She caught my drift.
“Not an option,” Rachel said. “I mean, I so wish you could, Carmen. You know that, right? But Mr. Duffy made a big deal about it on morning announcements. No prom crashers. If you're not a current student, the only way you can come to the prom is with a date.”
“Yeah.” I sighed, because I already knew that. The schools around here are obsessive about keeping the “bad element” out of the prom. Like if they're not careful, a gang of Harleyriding, bong-selling, speed-demon bikers are going to crash the gates and try to make off with all their precious little virgins or something. “It's the same at Norton.”
Norton is my new school. I still refer to it as Norton, and to my old school, Woodward Baines High School, as “school.” At least when I'm with Rachel.
“So you're going to have to come up with a date,” Rachel said for the fiftieth time. “What about Ben Sarber?”
“Ben Sarber? Are you kidding? He spits when he talks!”
“Oh, come on. He does not. He's kind of cute, in a weird math/science kind of way,” Rachel said. “And I think he has a thing for you. He keeps asking me how you're doing.”
“He does?” That surprised me. How come guys only ever want what they can't have? I mean, he never asked me out when I was there.
“He'd take you to the prom if you asked him,” Rachel said.
I considered it for about thirty seconds and shook my head. “I couldn't handle it. He really does spit when he talksâor sprays, actually. I can't believe you never noticed it.”
“He's not exactly on my radar screen,” Rachel said. “But how bad can a little spit be? I mean, do you want to go to the prom or not?”
I knew she was grasping at straws here, because we'd already run through a long list of guys I'd gone out with and dumped, or wouldn't even consider dating. And the rest of the good ones were taken. “I swear to God, my makeup would be running down my face by the end of three dances. Why do you think Miss Nagin moved him to the back of the room in French last year? He was spitting all over her every time he said, â
Rachel shrugged and picked through a box of beads on her lap. She's a really talented jewelry designer, which is perfect, because I like to think I'm a talented clothing designer. Between the two of us, we can put together the whole package. She was stringing a necklace of green, gold, and bronze-colored beads as we talked.
“How does this look?” she asked, holding up the partially finished necklace and gazing into the mirrored wall across from us.
The studio over the garage in this house is a narcissist's dream come true. Not that I'm a narcissist. But what girl doesn't like to stare at herself once in a while? One whole wall is mirrored, with a ballet bar running along it. The family who sold us the house had two little girls who wanted to be ballerinas, so they made this space into a rehearsal studio. Now, it's my own personal dust-free project space and private retreat, with a worktable, two old soft love seats, and a bunch of floor cushions.
It would be a fabulous place to hang out with all my new friends from my new schoolâif I had any.
Okay, I'm lying. I have friends. Like, two.
One of them is my cousin.
Trying to fit into a new school as a senior, when all the social groups are basically set in stone, is brutal.
I stared at the necklace in Rachel's hands and noticed how it picked up glints of gold in her long red hair, and complemented her pale clear skin and green eyes. “It looks perfect, of course. You're a genius. You'll have to make me something for the promâif I ever get a date.”
“Don't panic, we're working on it.” Rachel tried to be reassuring.
But we'd been “working on it” for three full weeks, and we had nothing. And the prom at Woodward Baines was only two weeks away.
“Don't you think I could just go with you and Jeremy?” I begged, only half joking. Rachel and her boyfriend had been going out for two years, so I didn't think I was going to intrude on their big romantic totally-in-love moment. “Maybe Jeremy could tell Mr. Duffy that he couldn't choose between us, so he brought two dates.”
“Carmen, you know I love you, but I'm not sharing Jeremy on prom night.” She raised both eyebrows as if she had something totally debauched and sexy in mind.
“I don't see why not,” I said, laughing. “It's not like you guys are going to do it or anything. I thought you were saving yourselves for marriage.”
“We are.” Rachel frowned like she wasn't sure she was happy with that decision. “We're definitely waiting for marriage. Or college.” She paused. “Or at least until prom.”
“Amazing!” I said. “Don't tell me you've decided to break down and go all the way.”
“I might not be able to resist,” Rachel said. “Not that Jeremy's pressuring me. He keeps claiming he's okay with waiting, but you should hear him moan. Like he wants it so bad.”
I rolled my eyes and laughed and shook my head, waving the topic away. This was
what I wanted to hear right then. I didn't even have a dateâlet alone a hot one.
“Just don't tell me about it while I'm sitting home on prom night, dateless, eating HÃ¤agen-Dazs out of the container. It's just too cruel.”
“Well, if you're that desperate, what about Sam?” Rachel asked me.
I gazed at my own reflection in the mirror and tried to imagine getting back together with Sam Bradstone, the guy I'd gone out with for eleven months. Sam and I were such a hot couple when we were together at Woodward Baines. Everyone said we were destined to be voted Most Attractive in the school yearbook, mostly because we just looked good together. Sam had thick, dark brown hair the color of mine (although mine has some dark golden highlightsâthank you, Marcella at the Spa Salon); and large, dark eyes like mine; and golden-bronze skin like mine. My lips are fuller than his, but otherwise we practically looked like twins. We were a pretty couple, I had to admit it.