Barry Clark was, to my knowledge, still grounded. Seeking him out put him in danger, but part of me wanted to.
Instead, I had gone over to the school, looking through the fence at it. A normal life. Classes started up in two weeks.
I had to solve this in two weeks. If I dropped out, then I’d be in trouble with social services. More trouble than I likely was already.
A normal life. I didn’t even really want one of those, much less think I had a chance of getting one. I’d failed at it once already. Sucked at school, sucked at blending in.
I turned. I knew the two boys who stood there. One of whom was indeed attractive enough to remind me I liked boys. It took me a moment, though, to recall their names. “Hey.”
“…hey.” There was something abruptly awkward about him. “Uh…”
“If you’re trying to ask me out, don’t bother. You’re cute, but I would like to actually only be two years behind.”
Both of them laughed, the cute one even more awkwardly. “Alright, but…”
“But I still think you’re…really cute.” He abruptly fled. His buddy shot me an apologetic look and went after him.
I wondered how long he’d worked on the courage to ask me out. And thought that before all of this started, I might have said yes.
Before all of this started. Now? Now it was best to publicly push anyone who thought he wanted to date me away. As firmly as possible. I watched them go, glancing around for anyone else, then back at the school.
A peculiar feeling of tension suddenly came into me. Maybe it was some budding danger sense, developed by all the trouble I had been in lately, but I found myself on high alert and hurrying away from the scene, tugging out my cell phone to call Kanesha. It was easier to call her than Thea, I’d found already.
“Not sure, but last time I felt like this we had a magic-eating fairy wandering around.”
“A…I won’t ask.”
“Good. I’m heading back, before whatever this is…crap.” There were a couple of guys in my path, and these weren’t teenaged boys trying to pluck up the courage to ask a hot girl out.
More cultists? I moved to go around them, and they let me pass, but I could feel their eyes following me, then they themselves in pursuit.
More cultists. And it was broad daylight. Which I hoped meant they wouldn’t try anything as long as I could stay in public.