The Martin boy was in fourth, just like Alessandro was in third. It baffled me as I discovered his first name was Eric. I ignored it, and him, although I could feel his glare from across the room. Geometry was surprisingly easy, all of the things we were learning I learned in the middle of the school year already, so I dedicated this class period to sleep. Wondrous, amazing, sleep. I sat next to a red-headed girl who frighteningly look a ton like Edie. She was skinny as a stick with the same fair skin and gray blue eyes that spelt out trouble. The first time I saw her I just stared, until she asked me what was wrong and I just responded with a nothing. Her name was Adriana Mallory, and as I discovered, she was the big-ex-jail-guards daughter. It was shocking that this frail looking young girl could be his offspring. She was sixteen as well (except for the fact that I was truly a few months shy of sixteen), and her birthday was the same day as Edie’s. It was like dvu, and it cut my heart in two. Before geometry was out I’d decided it that, instead of sleep, it was my gossiping hour, and this new Edie was my informant. We walked out, giggling like we’d known each other for years, and we parted with tight hugs as she headed to her French class, and I headed to lunch. A feeling of dread caught over me as I caught sight of the large palm, Alessandro wasn’t there just quite yet, and I sighed with relief as I approached the inside of the cafeteria. I headed into the line, keeping my head down as I looked at the food. There wasn’t much to eat, but today was this pulled BBQ beef sandwich or something, and I placed it on the pink tray along with a small bowl of Mac and cheese, and an apple juice. There was some commotion beside me as I waited in line, but I ignored it and stayed put, waiting to make it to pay for the food. A feeling of someone’s face by my shoulder crept over my body and I turned as it spoke.
“Hey there, newbie.” I jumped a tad and moved as far from Eric as I could. “Wow, hey, don’t worry, I’m not going to hurt you.” He smiled mischievously. “Although I think you owe me an apology,” His statement brought an ‘oh really’ look to my face.
“Excuse me? I owe you an apology? I wasn’t the one who was stealing the others bag!” I retorted.
“Oh, come on, Devin, let me take you out Friday night,” he was leaning against the bars, trying to put on a flirtatious charm. I’d seen his other side, and I wasn’t going to fall for that stupid little trick. It was the oldest in the book.
“Yeah, no,” My response was clear as day, and could slice through bricks. He ignored it though, and continued to nag.
“Devin,” He swung in front of me, and I stopped, staring up at him as he tried to be silky smooth about it all. “Come on,” he cooed. “It’ll be fun, think of it as an apology for getting my face punched this morning. You, me, a dark movie theatre,” He began and I froze, my facial expression growing icy as my voice did.
“You are seriously clueless, aren’t you?” I growled, leaning to the side and placing a hand on my hip. “You honestly can’t see when a girl isn’t into you, can you? Let me guess, you’re a football player, attractive, young, sporty, not used to being rejected,” He smiled at all of this, not catching on to the air around him. “But an imbecile and an idiotic jack ass. You’re spoiled by your parents and you only pass because you can play a sport well.” He stopped, glaring at me as I hit a nerve. I smirked. “Looks like I got right on, so why don’t you take that little bit of knowledge I just handed you and go on home to mommy.” I smiled, mischief crawling all over my cold voice. At this moment the sign ‘Approach With Caution’ should be placed over my head. He stepped closer toward me, trying to size me up, and I just lifted a brow at him as my hazel eyes met those bright green pair.
“Listen, you little bitch,” He growled, “I don’t know who you are or where you came from, and from what I’ve heard, neither do you, so I wouldn’t go on about mommy’s and daddy’s when you don’t have any. Not to mention the fact that if you did they probably left you to die and obviously don’t care enough to look for you, so if I were you I’d shut that pretty little mouth of yours before you say something you might regret.” I lifted a challenging black brow at all of this.
“Oh?” The question came out in a whisper as I pulled my face up as far as I could. “Like what?” The question was rhetorical. He didn’t need to answer it, and thanks to someone who seemed to be everywhere I was, he wouldn’t get the chance to.
“Bambina,” A hand rested on my shoulder, and I shrugged it off roughly, my pet peeve coming in and I went to glare, but when I realized who it was, my eyes went wide, and I guess I blushed a bit, even with Eric standing right there in front of us. He looked at me strangely, and I apologized.
“Uh, shoulder thing… pet peeve.” Was all I managed to get out before Alessandro looked at Eric.
“Are we going to have another problem?” He asked, lifting a remarkably elegant eyebrow. I kind of just stood there, watching that eyebrow. How could a guy who’s gone through puberty have such a delicate eyebrow? I shook the thought from my mind as his eyes pierced Eric’s.
“I was only having a little chat, nothing wrong with that,” Eric said, backing off a bit before looking down at me with a smirk. “I’ll catch you later, newbie,” He winked, knocking my chin up a bit. I slapped his hand away and went to run after him, but long fingers wrapped around my right arm, keeping me back.
“He’s not worth it, Bella Bambina. Let him go,” Alessandro said, looking past me at the football player who merely met up with his friends, slapping them on the backs and laughing. I rolled my eyes with a groan and looked back at my food, which, through this whole thing, still seemed to be warm. Which was really weird, but then again it was cafeteria food. What did I expect? A Su chef? Placing a hand on my back he gently pushed me towards the register, where plenty of students had seemingly magically disappear from, and I paid for the food before being ushered to that large palm tree. Exactly where I didn’t want to be. Leaning against the tree he slid to the ground soundlessly, pulling his hand through the dark curls that hung around his shoulders. I just kind of stood there, staring at him, food in hands and bag on shoulder. He looked back up at me, confused as he pulled out a peach from his bag. “Well, are you going to sit or just stand there?” He asked, and I nodded, sinking to my knees on the grass. “So tell me, Deveen,” He said, dragging on the ‘in’ parts as ‘een’ as he looked over at me. “Where are you from again?” He asked, smiling at me as I carefully crossed my legs. I shook my head.
“I don’t know, I told you.” I responded, opening my juice container and taking a sip. “I can’t remember a thing besides waking up at Jeff and Penny’s house,” He looked over at me, opening his pack and pulling out a sandwich and a juice of his own.
“Jeff and Penny?” He asked, his dark brown eyes peering into mine, questioning.
“The couple who found me.” I finished, not thinking about being lady like at all as I grumbled and about the skirt that clung so tightly to the curves of my lower body. “I hate skirts, unless they’re all flowy and maneuverable. I mean they’re cute, but hard to freakin sit in.” I moaned, just randomly speaking as I usually did, and he shook his head.
“No changing the subject, Bella.” He corrected and I just looked at him.
“Don’t you have any friends to hang out with this period instead of drilling the new girl on a life she don’t even remember?” That southern slang seemed to slip in as I spoke, not that I grew up in the south, no, the blame goes to growing up with grandparents, dad, and a step mom, all from the great state of Alabama.
“Si but they left for the day,” He merely stated, shrugging and taking another sip of his drink. “And besides,” His voice echoed with laughter. “You seem to be trouble, bambina, I can’t just let you run free and get into that.” I rolled my eyes at him and looked down at my food. Lifting the plastic container of Mac and cheese, I took the plastic half spoon half fork thing and stuck it in one of the cheesy noodles.
“I can take care of myself,” I growled. “I don’t need anyone to keep me out of trouble,” He laughed at me.
“Some would say I am trouble,” He said, smiling slyly, and I rolled my eyes.
“Listen, dude, I didn’t come here to flirt or any of that other good stuff, understand? I just want to graduate high school and get the hell out of Florida.” I stated matter-of-factly.
“Oh? Where do you want to go?” He asked me and I leaned back on one of my arms.
“I’m hoping Rome. I know it’s like, uber expensive, but it’s so amazing. The history, the culture, everything, you know what I mean?” I asked, getting a slightly dreamy look in my eyes.
“My family’s from there,” He said, sitting forward. “My parents moved here after my brother was born,” He smiled, and I seemed to light up.
“Really?” I asked, and he nodded. “Have you been?”
“No,” He said sadly. “We haven’t got the money to go back,” He took another sip of his drink and I looked at my food. I really wasn’t that hungry I noticed, and pushed the tray away from me.
“Oh, that sucks.” I stated, and he nodded.
“So where are you from?” He smiled. “Thought you escaped, didn’t you?” I sighed.
“I told you, I don’t remember.”
“You’re lying. Don’t lie to me.”
“Why can’t you just accept the fact that I don’t know who I am?” I demanded, sitting up and looking at him angrily, my voice cracking a bit as it seized up. “Don’t you think it’s hard not knowing who I am? Starting my life all over again? I had a life before this! I could have had best friends who were always there for me! I could have had a boyfriend who loved me!” Tears stung my eyes and I shook my head, standing up. “You know what? Just forget it.” I said, grabbing my bag. “I’ll see you later.” I turned around and walked away.
“Devin!” He cried after me, but I walked quickly, not giving him the chance to catch up to me. I didn’t know where I was going to go. I didn’t know what I was going to do when I got there. All I knew was that I needed to get away from him. He was untying my knots before they’d even gotten settled. Him and that damn Italian accent.
The rest of the day played out smoothly, Adriana and I had seventh together, so I talked to her about Alessandro, and she grew wary. “He’s been around the block a lot, Devin. And he’s Italian, he could be part of the mafia or something.” She said, her eyes growing wide. I just furrowed my brow at her.
“Just because he’s Italian doesn’t mean he’s part of the Mafia.” I laughed and she shrugged.
“You never know! I wouldn’t trust him, Dev. He’s not the safest guy to hang out with!”
“And that Eric Martin guy is?” I asked, and she shook her head.
“How so? Only difference I see is that he’s ruder, cocky, and white.”
“Well,” Before she could finish, the bell rang, and we all filed out of Geometry, talking about the homework instead of a certain brown boy. Upon walking out, I saw him, smoking a cigarette with a few other Italians and some Hispanic kids. I avoided eye contact, although I could feel those deep brown eyes upon me as I nodded and smiled at other kids that I met in my classes. I hugged Adri goodbye as Jeff pulled up, Penny in the front seat with him. I smiled, saying hello to them and climbing in the backseat.
“So how was your first day? Anything exciting happen?” Penny urged, turning in her seat as Jeff looked at me through the rear view mirror. I looked out the window and looked over at Alessandro, meeting his gaze as we pulled away.
“Nope, just a normal day at school,” I responded, then looked in front of me, driving off into the afternoon.