Syreeta couldn't say she was friends with Luna and Zac, lately. It just didn't feel right, hanging out with them at lunch. Besides, she thought there for a week or two she might be actually seeing Grayson Fletcher. But it didn't exactly turn into what she was expecting.
Yes, he'd been nice to her. He'd even invited her to one of his parties which actually wasn't his party, at all. It was his sister Caitlin who did the partying with her friend Jen. The party felt more like a zoo. She'd see Grayson with his buddies. Then she wouldn't. As it was, she was nobody there. And she ended up being pushed in the corner. There was Clive only to talk too.
Of course, there were a chorus of giggles ever so often when maybe it was Jen or Caitlin who would come over and drag Clive out to dance with them. Then to be pushed away with "You're so gay!"
Then he'd come right back with.."But I'm not gay."
It was like a running joke, Syreeta supposed. Although, it wasn't at all funny to Syreeta. She guessed Caitlin and Jen were regular You Tubers who thought they should have been on SNL, but then again, they probably wouldn't know about that long running TV show.
So when she saw Grayson off with some girl who was all over him, she decided she'd go to the grocery store with Clive, after all. Maybe Clive didn't really belong at that party, either. After all, he needed someone to drive him. He didn't even have a license.
Only, it wasn't until now that Syreeta realized Clive didn't go to the grocery store for ice. He'd gotten something else. Pills. Over the counter sinus medication. Actually.
She hadn't asked what he was doing. She didn't plan on ever seeing him, again. It wasn't like they were in the same circles at school.
Except here he was in the lunchroom with a cold lunch. One of those lunches they give you when you don't have your lunch card. They never gave out peanut-butter sandwiches unless you were desperate.
He ate alone. She decided to sit across from him at the empty table.
"Well, isn't this a surprise?" He grinned. His hair was wild and free. There was something a bit cartoon-like about him, yet ever so intriguing. Syreeta would hate to admit that she might actually be interested in him.
"Are you a drug dealer?" Syreeta looked him in the eye.
"Hardly." His smile was open. "Look, you didn't say-" He looked around then as if maybe they shouldn't be talking about this. "ANYTHING.. about that night, did you?" He sighed and took a bite of his dried up sandwich. He chocked it down with some milk.
Really, he didn't look that smart, even in those heavy glasses he wore. Maybe he was just plain stupid, and she should kick him in the shin under the table to keep him in line.
"I needed the cash, OK? And they were drunk, already." He fessed up. "I wouldn't even know where to get any." He shrugged.
Syreeta wasn't too impressed with his tactics, but she was relieved he wasn't into drugs.
"You're not in a gang, are you?" Syreeta wanted to know, ever so serious.
He laughed, shaking his head.
Syreeta sighed. She'd never gone out with a black guy, and she didn't want to hold it against him. Maybe she wanted to save him from Jen and Caitlin.