I stopped outside of Sam’s room when I heard her on the phone. “My mom said something about dinner too.”
I caught myself from laughing. My new soon-to-be-stepsister was a liar. Shit. She wasn’t good either. I started listing off ways to teach her in my head when she said further, “I don’t know. I’m not sure what I should do. I might still go and cheer for Adam tonight.”
The list stopped when I heard that. She was going to cheer for that Golden Poser? Fuck your brothers in the ass backwards, honey, why you’re at it. Adam Quinn’s high school glory days were going to be demolished. He’d been strutting around, making too many damn proclamations against Mason and me. If he thought we wouldn’t hear that shit, he was going to learn differently tonight. The girls never heard that crap. It was all within the bro universe. As Sam made another pathetic excuse to whoever was stupid enough to believe her, I shook my head.
She didn’t know it, but she was part of the weapon to take Quinn down. Then she hung up and I couldn’t leave now. I hadn’t intended to head in there, but fun was fun and Sam was strung like a violin. I could play sweet music when I plucked at some of her strings.
No, I saw she was still on the phone. She motioned me to leave. My grin widened. Fuck no, sweetcheeks. Who could walk away from playing with her? She was flushed and pissed at me. I held my laugh inside, but it was rippling through me. Messing with Sam brought me sweet enjoyment. I didn’t think it was legal.
I headed inside anyway.
Her eyes got big.
It was a matter of time and then she was trying to get off the phone. A smug feeling settled inside of me. I had called that right. Mason said she was different. He was right, but I wasn’t going to figure her out. That was all him. My job was to play with her. I went over and breathed on her neck. She was still on the phone and squirmed away.
She whirled around. “What are you doing?”
I smirked at her. What did she think? I was playing.
“This is my room. This is my privacy. Get out.”
I laughed. “You’re just pissed because one of your friends might’ve heard me.”
“Do you blame me?”
“Nah, guess not.” I went to the bed and kept laughing. She was strung so tight. I wanted to shake her. Didn’t she know we weren’t a secret that would stay buried? “So you’re coming tonight? You’re going to cheer on your future brothers?”
She froze. Her eyes grew heated. “Don’t say that word.”
“Brothers?” Shit. She did think we were going to be kept a secret. That never lasted. I pressed my head into her pillow from laughing outright. “I cnn’t beliff ith.”
“Come on. Get out. I want to go for a run.”
She reached for my hand. I batted her away and then threw out a challenge. “You should run with Mason sometime.” She thought she was the best. She probably was, but I’d still mess with her head.
“You should run with Mason sometime.” Oh yeah. She didn’t like that idea. She was holding her breath. One pluck. This was another string for me to stretch out. I was waiting, please give me more. I wasn’t ready to leave yet.
“What do you mean by that?”
I could’ve held out my hand to a starving puppy. It was that easy. “He runs too, most of it’s at practice, but I bet he’d smoke you.”
“You think so?”
No, Sam. You can’t play back with me. You’re not good enough. “I know so.”
“I can run for hours.”
I shrugged. “So can he.”
“I’m not going to get into this with you.”
I wanted to groan. She was giving up this fast? For real? My dad did better at withstanding my games than she did. “What? That Mason’s better than you at running?” I blocked her. She was going to leave. “Why don’t the two of you throw down? I’d like to see that.”
She pushed past me. “I’m not going to race, either of you.”
“Scared?” It was a hunch. I threw it out. When she froze, I knew I was right. This was another string to pluck. It seemed like she was scared of everything that was living.
‘We didn’t have it great, Logan, but can you imagine growing up with that bitch as a mom?’ Mason had told me earlier in the week. ‘I’m surprised the girl’s still alive. She’s strong inside.’
I hadn’t believed him.
He shook his head at me then. My eyes narrowed now. I didn’t see it, but maybe? Mason read people better than me. She turned around, heated and I saw it now. Fuck. Why was Mason always right?
She demanded, “What did you say?”
“You heard me. I think you’re scared.” I was seeing she wasn’t, not about everything.
This game got fun again. She had stood up to me and now she was challenging me. I said it anyway, “I think you’re scared of losing.”
“I wouldn’t lose.”
I moved so I was close, breathing down on her. The girl stood her ground. Again. Oh yes, I was really starting to like this girl. “I think you’re scared of everything.”
A primal look flashed in her eyes and she shoved me back. “I’m not afraid of anything.”
I laughed. “Whatever you say to yourself at night.” I could see through her. Mason showed me a window into her and I tested the boundary. She came back snarling at me. She was scared, but he was right. There was more in her. A lot more.
“I mean it.”
My phone buzzed in my pocket. It was my reminder to get to the school. “See you, sister. Have a good one tonight.” I left the door open behind me. As I headed down the hallways, I listened if she would do anything, say anything, maybe even cry. Nothing. There was complete silence.
I paused at the stairs before heading down.
Goddamn. Mason was right. This girl was intriguing.
Author of Carter Reed, the Fallen Crest Series, the Broken and Screwed Series, the Jaded Series, and a whole bunch more.