Sweet oblivion (sweet se.., p.15
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       Sweet Oblivion (Sweet Series #1), p.15

           Bailey Ardisone


  Finally! I didn’t think school would ever end. And it was only Monday…great. I stayed up way too late last night working on my sculpture. Once I got into it, time completely flew by. I didn’t realize what time it was until I finally looked up and saw that the clock read 3:02 a.m. Needless to say, I had a hard time staying awake in class. I groggily made my way out of the school and cut onto the grass, heading for home.

  “Nari! Wait up!” a male voice called behind me. I closed my eyes and slowly stopped. What did he want now?

  “Can I walk you home?” Liam said to me as he caught up. I didn’t feel like arguing.

  “Sure, why not…” I replied.

  “Sweet! I was expecting a fight from you.”

  “Let’s just say you caught me at a weak moment.” I yawned.

  “Watch it, chum!” I heard Zaylie say just after colliding with Liam. I guess he wasn’t watching where he was going. Her outburst made me laugh.

  “Speak for yourself, Blondie! Now beat it,” Liam mumbled.

  “Excuse me? What did you say to me?” Zaylie replied. I swore a fight was about to break out.

  “Guys, guys! Calm the heck down! Jeez…” I huffed. They both stared each other down like a Doberman and a Chihuahua in attack mode. That image alone sent me spiraling into fits of laughter—I couldn’t breathe from laughing so hard.

  “Nari! This isn’t funny!” they both said at the same time, sending me back to another fit of laughter.

  “I’m sorry, I’m sorry,” I pleaded through tears and choked breaths. I wiped at my eyes and tried to sober up. “I’m sorry, guys. I guess I get slap happy from lack of sleep.”

  They both looked at me, then at each other, and then immediately out at anything else to avoid meeting gazes a second time. I had to look away too, otherwise I might've lost it again. Just then, Desmond walked up.

  “Yo, yo, Nari! This your boyfriend?” Desmond asked.

  I practically choked on my own spit at his question and squeaked out, “NO!” He held his hands up as if surrendering with a playful smirk.

  “Come on, let’s go. We’ll give you a ride today,” he said, his awesome Australian accent marking the words. From the corner of my eye I saw a very disappointed frown immediately appear on Liam’s face. But…how could I resist?

  As soon as I walked in the door, Ray came around the corner from his bedroom. I cringed, waiting for the yelling to begin. Without even looking at me, he mumbled, “Make yourself useful. Take care of this for me.” He then handed me a few twenty-dollar bills and a grocery list before heading toward the couch.

  Make yourself useful? Was he serious? I did everything around this house; I was the only useful one around here. I took it, relieved that he wasn’t angry at least, and headed back out the door again.

  I had to walk of course, and with evening falling there was a moist chill in the air, so I put on my sweatshirt, turned on my iPod, and listened to music as I headed toward the store. I had to hurry and get this over with. My art project was due soon, and I had a few finishing touches to work on tonight.

  I thought back to this past weekend and all the fun memories I was beginning to create. Especially on Saturday watching Rydan play the violin. It was simply magical. He had such a way with music. After I started singing lyrics to his melody, we sat down and just enjoyed each other’s company in silence. He had played another song for me on the violin, but then drove me home, quietly dropping me off at the corner so Ray wouldn’t hear his bike.

  As I walked into the local grocery store, I grabbed a basket and started to look at the items on my list: milk, butter, cheese, rat poison.

  Wait, rat poison? What was that doing on the list? I hoped it was because we had a rodent problem and not an unwanted female teenager problem. I sarcastically made a mental note that it wouldn’t hurt to check my food from now on. I shook my head and found it anyway. Twenty minutes later, I had found all the items on my list and headed for the checkout counter.

  As I walked out of the store, I stopped in my tracks upon seeing this lone figure leaning against the wall outside. He was wearing dark jeans and a dark fitted long-sleeved shirt with the sleeves pushed up to his elbows, exposing his perfect lightly tanned skin. His shirt hugged his muscles just right, accentuating he was tall and slender. A shadow fell just over his face so I couldn’t quite see it, and his black hair was gently layered over his eyes, but it looked like he was giving death stares to a map.

  He could have been the devil, or maybe an angel, I wasn’t sure. But one thing I did know was he took my breath away. Something about him screamed dangerous yet extremely alluring, leaving me completely mesmerized. My eyes fell to his neck, marked by the strangest tattoo I had ever seen. I thought it was a tattoo anyway. It was really hard to tell through the shadows and distance I was standing from, but it looked to be a mixture of ink and…scars? It was small and sat right in the middle of the left side of his neck.

  I quickly turned on my heel before he noticed me gawking at him, feeling like a complete idiot for standing there as long as I did trying to make out his tattoo…thing. Whatever it was. Either way, I tried to catch the breath that I somehow lost just from his presence. I had no idea what was wrong with me; apparently I'd gone crazy.

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