Perfect hairstyle, perfectly straight fringe, perfectly fitting uniform. I wake up in the morning and I am in the kitchen before the three of my brothers, who go to school with me. In the afternoon, I do homework, study and no one has to remind me about that. The picture of perfection I am and that's why I got this nickname. Miss Perfect.
Well, soon my brothers will understand that perfection doesn't exist.
I have never been problematic, but hey, I'm a teenager. At the beginning of my new life, I watched myself. I wanted to get on well with my brothers and respect their rules. Now, I could see that was getting harder and harder. Sure, I wasn't going to stop studying or waking up with the alarm clock, but I discovered that their other rules were getting impossible to follow. More and more, every day.
I just finished French classes and was leaving the classroom. I was in a good mood because I got an A+ from the essay today. Then, suddenly, someone grabbed my arm.
"Hailie!" a boy, who good an F from the essay, called me.
It was Jason. One of those guys, who has the face of an angel, but behaves like a devil. I had French and Chemistry with him, two subjects, which he is probably going to fail if he won't start to study.
"What's up?" I asked with a distance.
He smiled and incredibly cute dimples appeared on his cheeks... Oh boy.
"You did good today, on French." he blinked at me friendly.
I raised my eyebrows.
"You did not," I replied.
He shrugged, not insulted.
"I am not really good at languages."
"Nor Chemistry?" I asked a bit more cuttingly than I wanted, so I quickly added: "I'm sorry, that was mean."
"Well, actually, that was true." he shrugged again and warmed up. "Listen, Hailie, Miss Freeman told me that for this semester, my last chance is to pass the next exam we are having. I have to get a good grade, otherwise, I'll be plucked."
I nodded, not surprised at all.
"That's why I need help. Will you help me, Hailie?"
My nodding head quickly changed into shaking, and my eyes widened.
"W-what? No, no, I can't..."
"Please, pretty please..."
Jason's big, blue eyes together with his beautiful, curly hair and smooth face made me look out his wings and a halo. Really, this boy seemed as if he'd fallen from heaven. Geez, it sounds like one of those cheesy pick-up lines.
"What do you need help with?" I sighed.
Jason spread his arms.
"Ok, we will see each other on Tuesdays and Thursdays, after classes." I announced, keeping in my mind that in those days Shane has his trainings and comes back home later, so I could go with him.
"Thank you, thank you, thank you!" Jason singed with relief. After that, he blinked at me again with a playful smile plastered on his face and went away. I sighed again, aware of the fact that he bewitched me with his charm and used my kindness.
Later I was wondering if the rule 'no boys' was adequate to this case. I was just helping a colleague, I wasn't going to fall in love with him or anything. I had a feeling that my brothers wouldn't like this idea anyway though. Trusting my intuition, I decided not to tell them anything. I didn't feel guilty, I was doing nothing bad, at least that's what I kept repeating myself. Now I know that I was wrong. First of all, I lied to Shane. I told him I'd go to the school library to study. Instead, I was sitting outside with Jason at the eastern part of campus, far away from the place where my brother had his training.
It lasted around three weeks. Autumn was getting colder and sometimes Jason gave me his jacket. Sometimes he said something naughty. He liked me and was admitting it this openly, and I just blushed in response, because deep down inside I liked him too. But I constantly had to fight for his attention while I was explaining to him French grammar.
"Why you didn't want to sit with me at lunch?" he asked one time. That's true, that day he waved at me in the cafeteria and I just shook my head and then pretended, I didn't see him.
"Because at lunch I sit with my friends," I answered indirectly. Mona, Audrey, and Marshall were the only people I told about my meetings with Jason. They also knew that at the beginning they were all about French and later started to include deep conversations and confessions.
"Tell me the truth, Hailie," he asked me and I melted while looking into his cute eyes.
"My brothers wouldn't be happy."
He blinked a few times, surprised.
"Oh. What about Marshall? You can sit with him?"
I gazed at Jason with a raised brow.
"Marshall's been my friend since the first day of school. He's harmless and everyone knows that. You, however... you don't have the best reputation and it's obvious you're always up to something." I said, deciding to be honest.
"Always up to something?" he repeated and now he was the one to raise an eyebrow.
"It's better if my brothers don't know about our meetings. For my own good, and for yours..." with that, I finished talking about my siblings. That's also when I started to wonder what if they'd discover the truth. Would they be angry at me? At Jason? They'd do something to us? Not knowing why in my head I replayed a memory of Tony beating that poor boy during lunch break...
Jason's been texting me a lot. Really a lot. I had to change his nick into "Jenny French" so none of my brothers would know that I write with a boy. Soon we started kissing and French classes stopped being a priority for us. I wasn't doing anything that almost a fifteen years old girl wasn't supposed to do, but I had to admit that we were getting more and more brave with this whole petting and that was sooo amazing.
Some Thursday, at the beginning of French classes, I smiled at Jason's side. We always did it, sharing grins, knowing that the real studying time will start in the afternoon. This time, however, he didn't smile back. I got surprised, because earlier that day, on chemistry classes, he was all cheerful and was winking at me constantly, as always. Well, I decided to ignore it but waited impatiently for a ring of the school bell. Jason got out of the classroom as if it was on fire, but I managed to catch him in the corridor.
"What's happened?" I asked worriedly. I noticed him avoiding my sight.
"Nothing... everything's ok." he murmured.
"You sure? We're seeing after school?" I still felt something's wrong.
Jason just nodded his head and left me alone, almost running away from me.
For the whole day, I've been out of sorts, wondering what was all this sudden change in his behavior about. I just wanted to meet with him and listen to his explanation, so I could comfort him. Finally, the last bell rang and I chased outside of school, heading to our secret place. I saw him there, leaning across the wall with hands in his pockets and dropped head. I'll know everything in a moment.
My heart was beating too fast.
"Jason" I whispered, coming closer to him. I caught gently his hand, pulling it out of the pocket. I wanted to show my support.
"I'm sorry, Hailie..." he just moaned, not daring to look into my eyes.
"For what, Jason, what's going on?" I questioned, now really scared. Jason was deadly serious and I have never seen him like that before. This always a positive, funny and smiley boy with dimples... I couldn't stand the pressure. I hugged him tightly. How nice that felt! I raised my head, looking for his lips. I kissed them. He pushed me away. Rejection bit me like a poisonous snake. I fixed my gaze on him with a hurt expression. I couldn't say a word.
"Am I not interrupting?" asked a voice from behind my back.
Voice, which made a chill go through my spine.