Authors: Jasinda Wilder
Falling For Colton
Copyright © 2015 by Jasinda Wilder
All rights reserved.
Cover art by Sarah Hansen of Okay Creations. Cover art © 2015 by Sarah Hansen.
Except the original material written by the author, all songs, song titles and lyrics contained in this book are the property of the respective songwriters and copyright holders.
This book is for you, the reader, for everyone who has fallen for Colton with me.
Chapter 1: What Kind of Choice Is That?
I don’t want to go home; I
go home. I don’t dare. Not with this report card in my hand. If Dad sees this report... Fuck. There’s no way I’m going home. Hell no. I mean, I know he’s going to find out eventually, but I might as well put off that shit for as long as I can.
Up front, the dumbass teacher is still droning on about fucking gerunds, whatever the fuck those are, even though the bell is literally ten seconds away from ringing.
Angrily I stuff the envelope into my bag, crumpling it down into the very bottom, placing my stupid remedial English textbook on top of it. Stupid thick-ass fucking book, full of useless bullshit.
Fucking words, man. All those words, a book full of fucking words. They gave me this big-ass book as part of a remedial class I take because I can’t fucking read. I mean, come on, how much sense does
make? Stupid goddamn motherfuckers.
Like, if a private tutor couldn’t help, I don’t think remedial classes with big fucking books will help, either. It’s not like I don’t care or like I’m not trying. I
I just…can’t read. Mom and Dad spent thousands of dollars on that tutor, and it didn’t get me anywhere.
I zip the backpack closed and toss it over my shoulder, letting it hang by one strap.
I stand up and head for the door, not about to wait for the bell.
“Mr. Calloway. We aren’t done here.” The teacher is short and gumpy, thick around the middle with skinny legs and arms. He’s bald with a few wisps of hair pulled from one side of his scalp to the other. Like, what the fuck? Who does comb-overs? And why?
I’m saved by the bell, literally.
I flip him off, Detroit-style, thumb out, fingers bent at the second knuckle. “Yeah, we are.”
He’s writing a detention slip before I’ve finished speaking. “Here you are, Mr. Calloway. For the
time this week.” He extends the detention slip toward me as the other students file out, some of them looking at me with a mixture of pity and frustration. They’ve all seen this many times before.
I snatch the slip out of his hand and crumple it into a ball, toss it at him and nail him in the forehead. “You’re wasting your time. I’m not going to that detention any more than I went to the other two this week, twat-face. Why don’t you just write me one for every fucking day, huh? In fact—” I grab the book of slips off his desk and toss them at him. They bounce off his chest. “Just sign them all, or I can throw the whole book away, and we can skip this bullshit.”
He glares at me, red in the face, embarrassed. “Why must you be so antagonistic?” he sputters.
I shrug. “Why must you be such a dick?”
His expression hardens. With a huff, he starts toward me, grabs me by the elbow, and we lunge toward the door. Problem for him is that I’ve got thirty pounds of muscle and four inches of height on him. I dig my heels in and he’s jerked backward.
He squeezes my arm and pulls again. “The office, Mr. Calloway.
I grab his hand and pry it off, twisting his fingers until it hurts. I hold him like that for a second, and then toss him aside like a ragdoll. “Keep your fucking hands off me.”
He sputters. “You—you can’t—”
I get in his face. “You-you-you—you can’t touch me either. You know who my father is. If I tell him you grabbed me you’re done. But you know something? That’s not gonna happen. Because if you touch me again, I’ll rip your skinny-shit arm off and beat you with it. Now. I’m leaving. And I’m not going to fucking detention, so you can just go ahead and report me to Dr. Shitsky. That way, I’ll get suspended and then I can stay home for a few days and jerk off.”
“So are you.” I smack him on the back hard enough to make him flinch. “Glad we had this talk, twat-face.”
me that!” He sounds like a little kid—he was probably picked on when he was younger.
picking on him right now, and he’s a grown-ass man and I’m only seventeen.
I walk out of the classroom without a backward glance. I’ll show up for school tomorrow, but I’m guessing I’ll have a little interview with the principal, the good Dr. Chizinsky—aka Dr. Shitsky. He’ll send me home for the tenth or eleventh time this year, and that’ll be that. I mean, there’s got to be a limit to the number of times you can get suspended in a single year, right? Apparently not. Or not for me, since good ol’ Dad is a senator.
The second I leave the school property I begin thinking about the muffler I’m upgrading on my ’67 Camaro. I’m not done yet, so in my mind I go through the next steps as I’m walking home. Having this hobby is the only thing that takes my mind off school. And it gives me something to do out of Dad’s crosshairs. Whenever he’s home from Washington he’s riding my ass about fucking everything: grades, detention, suspensions, my job, applying for colleges.
Like I’m fucking going to college. Haha—that’s a good one. If the idea wasn’t so lame it would be funny. He honestly thinks I’m going to fucking
? I’m in a podunk high school in rural Michigan, and I’m barely passing, and he thinks I can go to a goddamn Ivy League university? I’ve lost count of the number of arguments we’ve had about it. I know he can probably pull strings and shit and get me in despite my lousy grades, but I’m just
going. I don’t know what I
gonna do when I graduate, but it’s sure as shit not gonna be college.
I cut through the woods between the high school and the main road separating the school from my subdivision. A familiar route. I think I’ve actually worn a literal path between the trees, I’ve gone this way so many times over the last four years. I’ve even got a little hideout, an old tree with a rotted-out hole near the base, just big enough to hold my stash. I hang out here and smoke, drink, and basically avoid going home. Anything to avoid Dad’s disappointed glare and Mom’s…mom-ness. She’s always so anxious to please Dad and I know she’s afraid of making me angry because she just can’t handle conflict, and I have a hell of a temper.
I halt in front of my tree, toss my backpack to the ground, and sit down beside it. I reach up into the hole, into the little cubby I’ve dug out up in there. It’s just big enough to hide a pint of cheap whiskey, a little baggy of pot, a packet of papers, and a lighter. I don’t dare keep this stuff at home or in my backpack, but I sure as hell can’t live without it.
I take a swig of whiskey and hiss as it burns its way down, and then I roll a joint. Leaning back against the tree I puff on it lazily, relishing the sensation of having a floaty head and loose, heavy limbs.
God, I really don’t want to go home.
But fuck it. I can’t avoid the place forever. So I might as well get this over with.
Time to man up.
I stash my goodies and make my way out of the forest, not really paying attention to much of anything as I jog across the busy four-lane road, and hop the wall between the road and my subdivision. There are wide-open spaces here on this side of the wall, acres of manicured green grass mowed in smooth arcs, with the houses way off in the distance, all facing inward.
As soon as I land a fist connects with my skull, sending stars bursting in my eyes and pain lancing through my head.
I stumble backward, bumping up against the wall, blinking, and shaking off the pain-haze. I drop my bag and face them.
“You fucked my girlfriend, Calloway,” Preston snarls.
I grin at him. “And she was a pretty fucking sweet lay, too.” It’s four on one, so taunting them may not be the smartest thing, but hey—no one’s ever accused me of being the sharpest crayon in the toolbox. “Got that fine ass of hers bent over in the backseat, and man…I fucked her
“You fucking asshole!”
I lift my hands as if I’m innocent. “Hey, man, it’s not my fault she’s not getting it good enough from you.”
Fucking Preston, fucking Doug, fucking Brady, and that motherfucking piece of shit Dane. Football jocks. Dickheads extraordinaire. Jealous pricks.
Well, maybe jealous is the wrong word. I don’t know what the right word is, but whatever it is, they’re it. They’re all mad as hell at me because not only have I fucked all of their slutty-bitch girlfriends, but I’ve kicked each of their pussy asses more than once.
But now they’re all here together. And they’re all pretty fucking big. And pissed off. And they’ve got the jump on me.
My ears are still ringing and I’m blinking to clear my vision—sucker punches are tough to shake off. I assess the situation: Preston to my left, near the wall—he’s the one that sucker-punched me—Brady and Doug in front of me, and Dane to my right. They’re all wearing their stupid varsity letter jackets in May like the pretentious douchebags they are.
I lunge for Dane first because I hate his ass the most—not for any particular reason, just because he’s a stuck-up preppy douchebag pretty boy, and I disagree with his existence on a fundamental level. I connect with his jaw and he spins and stumbles. I pull off another jump-lunge-swing, and I connect again in the same spot. Say goodnight, Gracie. He’s on the ground now, crying.
Well, not crying, but moaning.
Preston is behind me with his arm around my neck, Brady has one of my arms, and Doug is hammering punch after punch into my gut, bam-bam-bam.
But Doug is a pussy.
I kick him in the nuts and he stumbles back, clutching himself, making a little squeaking noise. I jam my elbow into Brady’s chest, but take a shot to the cheek, another to the lip, and a third that smashes my nose open. I’m seeing stars now. Dizzy, aching—fuck. Brady is the toughest of all of them, the one who can actually fight for half a shit. Preston is squeezing my throat as hard as he can, but I’ve got my chin between his arm and my windpipe, so he can’t actually choke me. I lash out at Brady again, because he’s the one to worry about. I catch him somewhere between his eye and cheekbone with a wild left, and he’s distracted enough that I can now deal with Preston.
Fucking Preston Fairchild. He’s the most pretentious of all of them. Pretty-boy cocksucker. I reach up behind me and grab him by the spiky, gelled, faux-hawked blond hair and smash my head backward into his nose. Blood runs sticky and warm down the back of my neck, and then he lets go of me. I pivot in place, stumbling, dizzy, and then rocket four lightning-fast jabs at him, left-left-right
one-two-three-four to the face. Nose, cheekbone, jaw, nose. One more, a smashing left hook to his nose again, just to really fuck up his face.
Dude’s shit is so broken he’ll be marked for life.
Brady is still there, but he backs up, hands lifted. “I’m good, man.”
I spit blood. “Fuck you, bitch. Come at me.”
He shakes his head. “We’ve rumbled before. No thanks. I got no beef with you.”
I laugh, my tone bitter with sarcasm. “You know Shelly sucked my dick under the bleachers last week?” I must have a death wish. Brady could give me a serious run for my money in my current condition. “And then I fucked her in her car, had those bangin’ cheerleader legs up over my shoulders and everything.”