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Authors: Evelyne Stone

Destroying the Wrong

BOOK: Destroying the Wrong
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Destroying the Wrong

~*~

Copyright © 2013 by Evelyne Stone

Cover by MGbookcovers

Edited by Angi Black and Amanda L. Gordon

 

Boy-crazy Alissa Sullivan has got it made – a supportive, loving family, a cause she believes in, and her new boyfriend. With her best friend Kat at her side, she was counting the days until the end of high school when they could go away to college together. The she met Scott, a man who wouldn’t touch her but would turn her life upside-down.

Katherine Horne is perfectly content being in the background. All she wants is to graduate and get out of the town she’s grown to loathe. She’d do anything to avoid confrontation but when she finds herself in increasingly humiliating situations, she realizes some things can’t be ignored. Especially when it comes to protecting her best friend.

With their carefully planned futures suddenly unraveling, Kat and Alissa will come to realize one thing: fate has one plan for them... karma has another.

 

 

Chapt
er 1

Alissa

“How's the bullying story coming along?” Katherine asked as we headed toward the lunchroom. Neither of us had a car yet, so we were stuck eating on campus. Our high school sat in the middle of a residential neighborhood so all of the socially acceptable places to eat were too far away to walk.

“Good. I still don't know what angle I want to use, but hopefully going to the anti-bullying meetings will help.” My journalism teacher asked us to write a story on something related to our high school experience. I hadn’t experienced bullying first-hand, but walking down the halls at school, you couldn’t help but see it.

“The group is called
Let’s Stand Against Bullying
, or L.S.A.B. I really wish I’d been there to help them come up with a better name.” Katherine nodded as I kept talking and checking emails on my phone. “My teacher introduced me to a couple of the seniors in the group and holy hell is one of them hot!” I could feel the heat of my blush just thinking about him.

Katherine rolled her eyes. She knows I’m boy-crazy enough for both of us. Her radar isn't even on. She never noticed boys.

I lagged behind my best friend to make sure her outfit was straight because my fashion-victim-friend never pays attention.
I wish I had her butt, though
. I could never have a butt like that, no matter how many squats I did. I’ve heard people call her fat, but I chalked that up to everyone thinking only skinny is attractive. The only curves I have are thanks to expensive push up bras. My parents are thin, so I’d lost hope years ago that I would be any shape but straight. I do have great hair though, thank goodness.

“All right, so tell me about this hot guy,” Katherine said with a sigh as we approached the food line.

“Well,” I began, but stopped short when we reached the back of the line. He was standing right in front of me. Matt Ryan, senior, with dark eyes, dark curly hair and huge arms. He looked over his shoulder, saw me and turned around.

“Matt. Hi. I was telling my friend Katherine how excited I am to get involved with L.S.A.B.”
Ugh, did that sound fake?

“Great! Nice to meet you Katherine.” His smile was gorgeous. “You're welcome to come to the meetings with Alissa if you’d like.”

“Umm, okay, thanks,” Katherine said, turning a slight shade of red. I was shocked to see her reaction to him. Maybe her radar wasn’t as offline as I’d been led to believe.

“So, Matt, do you like what they’re serving for lunch today?”
Okay, now that sounded ridiculous. If I could slap myself, I would.

Matt smiled and if I wasn’t mistaken, suppressed a laugh. “I usually have lunch meetings but today my new friend Walt here,” he nodded towards the pudgy guy standing in front of him, “asked if I would sit with him.” Walt nodded but kept looking around the room like he was expecting something to happen. As if on cue, the lunchroom doors opened and the
Disorder Alliance
walked in.

Kelly Martin, the head of the D.A. led the pack toward the front of the lunch line. Katherine and I had come up with the group’s name because we’re positive they all had disorders that make them act less human then the rest of us.

“Hey, Walt, you don't mind if we just go ahead of you, do you?” Kelly actually patted Walt's head like she would a dog.

Walt just stared down at the ground and I looked at Katherine who gave me the “don't you dare say anything” look. I looked at Matt because I really didn't know if I should say something or let it happen. Usually I just walked away because I was as intimidated by confrontations as Katherine, but I just met Walt and it was obvious he wasn't going to stand up for himself. Matt was already in her face before I could muster something to say.

Matt threw back his shoulders and pointed at Kelly when he said, “Actually, he does mind and so do the rest of us, so take your ass to the back of the line like everyone else.”
He sounds really pissed
.

Kelly didn't skip a beat. “You used to be less of an asshole before you started standing up for losers like your stubby friend here in his thrift store clothes.” Her body shook with anger.

“Fuck off, Kelly.” Matt’s arms and neck flexed.

No one in her little group said anything. They all just stood behind her, pissed off looks on their faces. Kelly broke eye contact and shoved herself behind Katherine, paying no attention to the other people in line. As we moved forward, I had to remind myself to breathe and keep my head forward.
Don’t look at them.

I didn’t know how I would handle being the focus of the D.A. I’d want to stand up for myself. I’d try to cleverly get out of the harassment, but I fear I’d start to cry and they’d know they got the best of me.

As we moved our way down the line of foods that look like they'd sat there all week, I saw Kelly push Katherine just enough to throw her off-balance. Katherine reached out to steady herself but her palm hit the corner of the tray and one of the bowls went flying into the air, hitting Kelly in the chest. I almost laughed but stopped myself soon enough to make it sound more like a gasp.

Kelly just stood there staring at Katherine like she was about to pounce.

“I'm so sorry. I slipped,” Katherine said. Kelly lifted her hand like she was about to slap her but Katherine quickly bent down to pick up the bowl. “I slipped… I swear.”

“She knows that.” I stared at Kelly to make sure she didn’t try anything, standing close enough to block her fist. Kelly glared at me, threw her food on the ground next to where Katherine had squatted to clean up the mess with a handful of napkins, and stomped toward the bathroom. A couple of the D.A.’s followed her but the others stayed in line, glaring over at us.

“Well, that went well,” I laughed. I’d help Katherine up but my hands were shaking. I grabbed a clean tray for her and we finished getting our lunch. Matt and Walt followed us outside to an empty table where they sat across from Katherine and me.

“She’s going to get back at you,” Walt whispered to Katherine while looking down at his food.

“I’m sure she’ll forget about it soon. At least I hope so,” Katherine whispered back to him. She picked at her food and I could tell she was shaken up. I felt awful for her but didn’t want to make her talk about it anymore in front of the guys.

Matt smiled at me between bites, but I couldn’t smile back. I was always conscious of food sticking in my teeth.

I took a moment to look over his features, trying to keep from swooning. His skin was almost as dark as mine which surprised me since I spent as much time in the sun as possible. We have a pool at my house and even when it’s cold, I’d sit out in the sun since I refuse to have pale, white skin just because I live in upstate New York.

We talked a while about classes but it stayed mostly silent. Not how I had imagined spending time with a hottie like Matt. I was too uncomfortable to even flirt.

~*~

Feeling like I needed to make a better impression, I made up an excuse to meet with Matt, just the two of us. I wanted to do an interview with him before attending some of the L.S.A.B. meetings, that way I could get an insider’s view on bullying. My excuse worked and I was on my way to my favorite coffee shop near my house.

I dressed up a little more than usual, in a casual black dress with my favorite beige boots. Matt was tall and I thought if my heels brought me closer to his height, he’d be more comfortable. I got the idea from a magazine that said something about how guys respect a woman who looks them in the eye. I loved heels anyway.

Matt texted me a couple of minutes before my mom dropped me off asking what I wanted to drink. When I walked in, he was sitting at the small table in the back with two cups of coffee.
How sweet is he?

“I'm sorry I'm late.”

“No problem.” His smile made me blush.

I took a sip of coffee so my mouth wouldn't get dry. I nearly moaned tasting the mixture of melted caramel and espresso.  Being alone with him was making me much more nervous than I had anticipated. I pulled my pad and pen out of my oversized purse. I’d jotted down a couple of questions before I left but now looking at them again, I realized how stupid they were. I had no clue what to ask.

“What made you interested in getting involved with L.S.A.B.?” I glanced up at him a little surprised that he was asking me a question since I was the one that was supposed to be doing the interview.

“Bullying is an issue at pretty much every high school and I thought it would be a good topic for my journalism paper. Why did you join the group?”

“After I blew my knee out playing football, most of my friends stopped inviting me to parties and my priorities changed.” His face showed his disappointment. “I started going to a gym instead of working-out with the guys at the school and I met some other kids. They workout in groups and I joined in. One Friday night, they told me about the L.S.A.B. meetings our school organized. I decided to check it out and have been going ever since.” He shrugged his shoulders and smiled.

“So, why do you guys meet at the gym instead of at the school?” I moved my leg under the table and bumped up against his leg. One of my lame attempts of flirting. He smiled, which I hoped was a sign he didn't mind.

“The gym was built in an old warehouse, so there’s a large room in the back. The new owner lets us continue to use it because the room isn't being used for anything else.”

“Have most of the people who attend the meetings experienced bullying first-hand?” I started jotting down some notes.

“Yes. When we get a bunch of new people, we'll have volunteers go up to the front and tell their stories.” He reached for his cup at the same time as me and our hands brushed against each other. We both smiled and I think he blushed a little.

“Did they welcome you even though you haven't experienced what they have?”

“What makes you think I haven't?” That question caught me off guard.

“Being a football player, I assumed you wouldn't have anyone messing with you.” My stomach clenched. I didn’t know if I’d just offended him.

“We all have our stories,” he replied, sadness in his voice. “What about you?”

“I have my best friend, Katherine, and really don’t hang out with anyone else, so I guess I've been lucky enough to stay out of the drama most groups seem to have.” I shrugged. “I try to avoid confrontations. Always have.”

“So you play it safe?”

“Yeah, I guess. When Kelly gave us a hard time the other day, I freaked out a little.”
That was embarrassing to admit.

“Well, you didn't look like you were freaking out.” He winked at me.  My heart rate increased thinking he just flirted with me.

“Do you miss playing football? I'm sure you had girls hanging all over you.”
Please say that wasn’t the case.
I think I embarrassed him because he blushed.

“Yes, I miss playing football and no I didn't have girls hanging all over me. I had the same girlfriend for two years. She dumped me after I got hurt.” He didn't show any sign of emotion over the mention of the break-up.

“Her loss, I guess.” I flashed my best smile but moved my leg a little too fast and hit the table leg. My coffee cup fell over, spilling all over my paper.

Matt jumped to grab some napkins and we both laughed it off.

He asked me for my number while we were saying goodbye so I waited to text my mom for a ride until he was gone. I needed a couple of minutes to cool my hormones back down. The last thing I needed right now was my mom to notice how flushed I was. If she knew I was into a gorgeous guy like Matt, she would make me re-count every second of the conversation.

~
*~

After our coffee date, Matt and I had talked or texted the entire week. He asked me out the next weekend and we went to the movies. He kissed me after the credits started rolling. It was my first “real” kiss. He kissed my cheek, then my nose and finally my lips. His lips were so soft. I opened my mouth, letting my tongue sweep over his. I didn’t want him to stop. The theater ushers in charge of clean-up eventually asked us to leave, which was more than a little embarrassing.

It was perfect until we realized someone had taken a picture of us and posted it online. Everyone knew about the kiss before it was even over. The rumors at school ranged from a simple to kiss to us having sex in the back of the theatre. I just ignored the classmates who thought I should know what everyone was saying and concentrated on school.

Needing to get serious about the article Matt had sidetracked me from, I decided the next week to finally attend my first L.S.A.B. meeting. I had my mom stop by Katherine’s place on my way. She lived with her mom in an apartment about ten minutes from my house. The spring weather was mild, so I decided to wear a sundress, hoping Katherine would approve of my choice. I was nervous and she always managed to calm me down somehow.

“I’ll be right back.” I left my mom in the car knowing I would only be a couple  of minutes. Her front door was unlocked like always, so I let myself in.

“Kitty Kat, where you at?”

“In my bedroom!” She never seemed surprised when I just showed up unannounced. I walked around the hallway corner and stopped in her doorway. She looked me up and down, tilting her head to the side.

BOOK: Destroying the Wrong
4.32Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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