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Us and Them

By @ZoeAmber

Hayden

Friday / September 20th / 10:50 PM 

Jonah is a complete idiot, I think as I watch him puke for the second time off of Addie’s front porch. He’s a freshman, but he’s trying his best to keep up with the other juniors as much as possible. And look where that’s gotten him.

“Jesus, you’re a f*****g mess, bro,” I say as I secure one of my arms around his neck. “Get it together.”

I let out a sigh. That said, it’s not like he’s the only one puking in front of me right now. There’s someone else half overturned into a bush a few feet away and someone else leaning against the mailbox. High school, am I right?

I look back down and see that Jonah seems to have gotten everything up now and is maintaining his balance. I pull him to his feet and help him back inside. The party is in full swing with drunk teens everywhere and we pass a couch with two people basically fornicating with clothes on. I’m ashamed of my own generation sometimes. We head straight through the house until we reach the back deck where I sit him down in the open air.

“Jonah, stay.” I put my hands up as if to signal him the same message and then venture back into the kitchen to get some water.

I pick up a red solo cup and look up to see them enter. Mila Douglas with Lillie Mason following behind. I almost drop my cup when she meets my eyes and bites her lip in surprise.

She must be freaked about what happened after chemistry. I stayed behind to ask about the same thing, to change partners, not because I would ever not want to work one-on-one with Lillie Mason. But because my parents would probably skin me alive for even looking in her general direction, let alone trying to talk to her.

‘Never trust a Mason. They’re wolves in sheep’s clothing.’

The two of them dart away from the kitchen and I let out a sigh of relief, like when you see a huge spider and you’re too terrified, thinking it will come closer, to even breathe.

I snap out of it, fill up the cup and bring it back to Jonah, who is now hunched over and seriously rethinking his life choices.

I sit on the patio step with him as he takes a gulp of water. “You have looked better, my friend,” I say.

“Yeah, I know. The boys had me going and all of a sudden…” He gestures to himself. “Carrots, why is it always carrots…” He says under his breath. “I didn’t even eat carrots.”

“Spare me the details.” He turns to me with a look. “Lillie Mason is here,” I whisper.

“Oh-ho ****.” He howls, leaning back on his palms. “You gonna hit that?”

I glare at him with the hatred of a thousand suns and he puts his hands up in surrender.

“You know I’m kidding.” He says. “But are you seriously just gonna creep her for the rest of your adolescent life?”

I don’t need to answer that question because he already knows. Yes.

“But isn’t she like biologically predisposed to hate your guts?” Asks Jonah, taking another gulp of water.

“I mean, you know me, I’m not quick to give up, but isn’t this kind of a losing battle?”

Jonah slaps a hand to my back. “I hear Chloe Nash is single.”

“Weren’t there rumours going around that some guy gave her chlamydia? I think I prefer my loins sans fire, thanks.” I slump over and put my chin in my hands.

Jonah passes the cup back to me with a toothy grin, now empty. I roll my eyes and smile.

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  1. Kathleen Fazio

    Feb 2, 2022

    omg I love it so much! you are an amazing writer.

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    0 Replies Feb 2, 2022
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