After fixing myself, I instantly storm out of my room while carrying a duffle bag. I scowled seeing my mother blowing a cigarette's smoke on our balcony. She didn't spare me a glance though I'm certain that she knows I'm here.
"I'll get going now. Bye."
As soon as I left the house, I went to Lorelei's place right away, which is just few blocks from ours. Evan and Ethan will fetch us from there.
Lei's closing their gate when I arrived.
She greeted me a tight hug. "Thought you'll ditch me. I'm about to sell your precious bracelet."
"Shut up," I snapped at her.
We're in that position when we heard a beep not far away from us.
"Hop in, ladies." Evan peak from the window.
"Good morning, handsome," Lei answered back with a grin that earned a chuckle from the latter.
Their other friends' sleeping faces greeted me as we enter the van. I guess they're still drowsy just like me that's why they are taking a short nap.
"The others are waiting for us in Amber's house," Evan said as soon as we suited ourselves. I look at Lorelei, confused.
"Oh, I forgot to tell you that we invited the whole class too. You know, the more, the merrier."
"Even Lucas? You managed to invite him?" I asked.
She shook her head and chuckled. "That guy doesn't even give a damn about us, so we didn't bother inviting him."
"Yeah, that guy prefers to burry himself with books," Evan added.
I simply nod my head and close my eyes before plugging my earphones in.
I look above and saw the implausible moon illuminating the dark sky, the stars were strewn in the gloom.
I tightly hug my jacket to pend off the coldness of the night. It's a good thing that I bring a jacket with or I'll be freezing to death right now.
"Lauren, stop daydreaming and come inside the van." I was snapped back to my senses when Lei called me.
We're currently in front of Amber's house waiting for her. It's been almost half an hour since we're here and I'm starting to get irritated.
"Hi guys! Sorry to keep you waiting, I had a hard time finding my sexiest bikini. You know, I need to show off my perfect curves." She giggled.
"You're such a hoe, Amber. Evan said that their place is secluded, we're the only people there," Ashley fired at her.
"Correction, a beautiful hoe."
Her eyebrows raised upon seeing me, but she didn't say a thing. Good, I have no time to deal with her nonsensical sentiments.
"Settle yourselves guys, we're off to go," Evan, who's sitting in the driver's seat, suddenly said.
We used two van to capacitate the students from our class. Ethan will drive the other one.
I immediately went inside the car. To my surprise, Sloane's face welcomed me. He's grinning foolishly.
"All the seats had been occupied, Lauren. You have no choice but to sit beside me."
I quickly search for Lorelei who made a peace sign upon seeing my irate face. I glared at her.
"Stop making it as if it's a bad thing being this close to me. Don't you realize that other girls are fantasizing to at least get near me? Huh, you must be really lucky."
I feigned a disgusted look. "Spare me with your bullcrap, shit face. I never wanted to be one of your bitches, leave me alone."
"Tsk. Is being harsh your way of showing your undying love for me? Hmmm, babe?"
I sneered hearing his arrogance. I rolled my eyes and muttered 'jerk' enough for him to hear. He chuckled like a maniac
Why did I do you to be in a situation like this? How unfortunate.
"We're just going to pick Aerin at her house and we're good to go," Evan said while moving the steering wheel.
We were not yet far from Amber's house when her cellphone rang. "Guys, Aerin just texted me, she said she can't come with us. Her parents didn't allow her."
"Sick. Her parents were able to stop her? That's new. I thought she could find a way to ditch them," Sloane said.
"I thought they were not on their house right now? They had a business trip, if I'm not mistaken," Lorelei asked.
"Change of plans, maybe," Pierce answered who's sitting behind her.
I gave him short glance and he smiled heartly that makes my heart thump like crazy.
"Hi," he greeted.
I immediately averted my reddened face and fell death silent.
Evan and Amber are in the front seat. Sloane is sitting in the middle of I and Ashley. Pierce and Lorelei are sitting behind.
I close my eyes and listen to the solemn music through my earphones. I was about to go to my dreamland when someone held my head and rest it through his shoulder. And for some strange reasons, it feels great.
I thought this will be a normal and casual hang-out. Never it did cross my mind that this trip would lead us to the darkest part of our lives.
"Lauren! We're already here." I woke up from Lorelei's high-pitch voice.
I opened my eyes and look at her annoyingly. "You're too loud."
"You sleep like a dead. I almost bang your head to wake you up."
I rolled my eyes. "Whatever you say."
The rays of sun kiss our skins as soon as we get out from the van. I close my eyes again to feel its tranquilizing warmth and breathe the serendipity of the place.
I roam my eyes around, beautiful is not enough to define the island. I felt million grains of white sand underneath my feet. The tantalizing scent of the washed-up waves, coconut, and pineapple emphasize the picturesque scenery. I was amazed by how easily fantasy and reality intertwined at that moment. It was like continuing a dream after waking up.
I turn my head to the east. While the sky in the opposite direction was still dark, the dawn on the east already broke. A mixture of yellow and orange on the horizon beneath a dark neon blue ocean of night had begun to peek out. As the sun continuously rose, all of the purple and deep blue faded away. I wish I could live in this paradise.
"What are you doing? You look stupid. This is your first time going to an island?"
Sloane's mocking voice disturbs my peace. He's smirking while looking at me.
"Mind your own business and leave me alone. You know what? You're indeed a walking abomination in my life."
He just laugh at my insult and wrap his arms around my shoulder that I immediately remove.
"Damn, why are you so irky around me?"
"You can answer your question for yourself, jerk."
I left him there laughing like a mad psycho that he really is. I walk towards Lei who's busy capturing pictures of the place and herself.
"Lei, I want to rest first. Where are we going to stay?"
She stopped and looked at me. "Evan has not inform us yet. Just rest later, don't be such a kill joy. Here, let's take a photo, it's been a long time since we had a picture together."
She jumps like a child while carrying her camera, finding a nice place to take a photo, though I can assert that every corner of this place speaks resplendence.
"Lauren! Come here, this place is perfect!" she shrieks while standing in front of the marble statue. It's a naked woman holding a shell. How can people spend so much with unnecessary things? Oh well, their money and riches aren't my business anyways to stick my nose anyway. They did a good job sculpting it, nonetheless.
The water around the island was as clear as crystal that I can see the depths of the sea. I dragged myself and turned to Lorelei, the place seemed like a tropical paradise. There were multitudes of greenery, lush foliage that looked like they were painted on.
The others are also busy admiring the enchant of this island. Lei grabbed my arms and raised her camera. I smiled awkwardly as the camera shuttered.
She rolled her eyes and deleted the picture. "At least show a genuine smile, you bitch."
"I'm not a fan of taking pictures, I don't have the face to flaunt in the camera, just so you know."
She looks at me with a wide shock eyes. She hold her chest as if she's very offended.
"Are you seriously insulting me, Ms. Lauren Brienne Lewis?!"
I look at her, bewildered. "What?"
She waves her hands in my face, telling me to shut up. What screws in her head did she lose along the way?
"Do you seriously think a beautiful, charming, and gorgeous person like me will befriend ugly and average looking people? Nah ah ah, you're insulting my taste, girl."
My face distorted because of her self conceited remarks, but a smile crept between my lips later on. This woman, despite being a brat and bitch at times, never failed to lift my confidence.
"You're best friend with the Lorelei Shin, now stop being a petty bitch. Smile or I'll drown your ass here."
I chuckled and smiled at the camera. "Fine, whatever."
We took a couple of photos, Lei would probably not stop if Evan did not call us for a breakfast. My facial muscles were already tired smiling. The table full of different cuisines and dishes greeted my eyes as we sit in the long table.
"Control your voracious demon, Lauren," I uttered to myself.
"Wow, you guys cooked all of these?"
Lei asked as she grabs a pinch of meat.
"No, silly. I actually informed the keeper of our rest house to prepare a feast for us. Since we rarely visit this place, we hired people to take care of it and maintain this place, so you guys don't need to worry about your stay, everything including the bedrooms were prepared already," Evan answered.
"That's nice. These foods look so delicious by the way."
"Hmmm, I can assure you that they are our best cook. Guys, don't be shy, eat as much as you can. Dig in!" Ethan said with a cheerful voice.
"I can't. I need to maintain my body,"
Amber, who's sitting on the opposite side of the table, said. That made me look at her plate. How can she be full with those two wheat breads and bacons?
"Amber and her obsession with her oh so perfect curves," Ashley said sitting beside her. They laugh at the two friend's bickering.
All of us shoveled foods on our plates. The entire breakfast was filled with laughter.
"Hey, you're already done eating? Try this one, I promise you it's really good." My eyes widened when Pierce, whom I didn't notice sitting in front of me because my eyes were busy feasting on the foods served, talk to me.
He puts a steak on my plate, that I don't have any idea what exactly the name is. I bit my lips as I felt my neck burning.
"I, uh-" I cleared my throat, trying to collect my composure. "I am not actually not familiar with most of these dishes, that's why."
He stops serving my plate with foods and looks at me with a heartly smile. "You're cute."
The burning sensation I felt a while ago intensified. My hands are literally shaking, I can't look directly in his eyes.
What the fuck is this guy saying? More importantly, what's with my reaction? I can't be possibly liking him, he's too much for me.
Just when I am about to answer, someone from the table asked a question.
"Are you guys dating?"
The entire table turned silent, the only thing I can hear is the humming of birds from outside and my fast heart beat. My breathing hitched, and right now, I'm sure as hell that I'm blushing like a red fucking tomato. Good God, please save me from this embarrassment.
I turned to Lei, my eyes asking for help, but she just grinned at me. This psychotic bitch.
"Eh? What do you mean?"
I'm glad that Pierce recovered easily. He doesn't seem bothered anyways.
Samantha, our classmate who asked that question, shrugs her shoulders. "I'm just curious since you're so kind towards Lauren."
Can I just pull this snooping bummer's hair?
"Pierce is naturally kind to everyone. Y'all need to stop giving meaning towards his actions." Instead of Pierce, Sloane answered it with a flat voice while playing with his pasta. I internally nod my head.
"Sloane's right. Beside, I know Pierce has a high standard, right?" Amber taunted while sipping on her coffee.
"Amber," Lei called her like she's warning her. She smiled at my best friend.
"Oh no, don't get me wrong guys. It's not that I'm implying something. I just simply stated that Pierce has his own standard."
This woman's testing my patience. Am I bad if I'm silently wishing that she chokes on her bread? I guess I am.
"Shut up, Amber."
Everyone turns their heads to Sloane who said that before leaving the table. That impertinent bonehead.
"What's wrong with your best friend, Pierce? He's so grumpy and irate these days. Argh, boys and their mood swings."
The latter shrug his shoulder at Amber's remark and continue eating.
Lei suddenly nudged me, I look at her. "What?"
She wiggled her eyebrows, obviously teasing me. "You like Pierce, don't you?"
I glared at her and kick her legs. She winced a bit but still smirking. I badly want to tear off that smile on her face.
"Shut up." I pointed the fork at her. "I don't like him. Stop assuming things, will you?"
"Stop assuming things will you?" she mimics my words with a teasing face. "I know you have a crush on him, I can feel it. You're just in denial."
I rolled my eyes. "Whatever that makes you sleep at night, Lei."
We're currently digesting the foods that we just ate when two people, probably the ones Evan was referring to who maintain their rest house, walk towards us, specifically at the twins.
Evan stands up and greeted them.
"Guys, they are the ones whom I mentioned earlier, Alice and Dencio," he introduced them to us.
"Sir Evan, the guest rooms are now ready. Should we assist them to their respective rooms?"
"Ah yes, that would be good." He turned to us. "Girls, Alice will be accompanying y'all to your rooms. Each rooms can accommodate two persons."
The girls immediately stand up. We followed the woman, whom Evan called Alice. My eyes sparkled in amusement after entering the house. I took a quick glance of the spacious place, the carpeted floor, and the luxurious chandelier hanging on the roof that made the place more elegant. Even the huge stairs that leads us to the second floor screams grandeur.
Damn, now I realize how stone broke I am. Seems like I'm the only one who's amused because these brats probably have seen more than this.
I suddenly felt envious. Would my life be different if I was born rich? Probably yes.
We stop in the silent hallway. "These will be your rooms. Just like what Sir Evan said, two people can occupy a single room." She paused and opens the door. "If you need something, just press this bell and we'll come. Hope you enjoy your stay, ladies."
They didn't bother sparing her a glance and immediately grab their partners inside the rooms.
"Thank you, Ma'am Alice," I said in which she responded with a smile before walking away. I went inside the room where Lei entered.
"Aren't you coming with us?" Lei asked while putting a sunblock on her arms. She's wearing a two piece yellow bikini that perfectly hugs her body.
"Where?" I asked wearily while feeling the cozy feeling of the mattress, its softness tempting me to fall in a deep sleep.
"We will take a quick dip."
"Hmm, just enjoy yourself. I'm really tired, I want to sleep for a bit," I replied.
She nodded her head. "Okay, just come down if you want to swim. Bye, Lauren."
I didn't bother to answer and just close my eyes. But before I was pulled to slumber, I decided to stand up and open the window curtains to welcome the sea breeze.
My forehead creased upon seeing someone who seems agitated while arguing with someone through the phone. But I'm too tired to even give a damn about it.
I shrug my shoulder and jump on the bed. The cold breeze caress my skin as I drift off to sleep.
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