My Friend Marcel

Annie's dad has moved around a lot, and she has never been really able to make many friends. Finally her dad gets a steady job in a tiny town outside Cheshire, named Holmes Chapel. When Annie starts a new school year at Holmes Chapel Public High School, she meets a nerdy boy named Marcel Styles. As she gets to know him better, she realizes that he's not the geek everyone thinks he is. Annie gets Marcel to open up and become himself, and they become fast friends. But soon, Marcel finds himself falling for his friend...what will happen when her biggest secret is revealed? Will Marcel still like her? Or will this secret tear Annie and him apart...forever?

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8. Bowling, Reece's Cups, and Hunger Games

We pulled into the bowling lane, and Harry shut the car off and turned to me. “Just warning you, Zayn and Liam are very…competitive.”

“So am I, so it shouldn’t be a problem.”

“No, I mean, Zayn actually got mad at Liam when Liam won.  It was only for like an hour, but he was mad.”

“I don’t care.” I flipped my ponytail off my shoulder. “I’ma show these boys how Londoners bowl.” He grinned, and we walked into the room.

X*********************X

“Hey Haz!” Louis screamed as we walked in. “Hey, Annie!”

“Hi, Lou,” Harry yelled back. I looked at him in shock, and he blushed. “I get…weird while I’m around these guys. You’ll see.”

“I think I like this ‘new Harry’,” I teased. He smiled.

“What, you didn’t like the old one?” he asked innocently. I wacked his shoulder, and he smirked.

“Okay, so this is Liam.” Harry motioned to a tall boy next to Louis. He had brown hair and chocolate eyes. He looked actually kind of intimidating. He waved to me and continued putting names into the computer. “Zayn,” Harry continued, pointing to a skinny boy with black hair and brown eyes. His hair was in a quiff, and had a strip of blonde in the front. He nodded to me and continued trying to pull his shoes on. “You already know Louis…” Harry waved his hand to his best friend, who waved hysterically at me. “And Niall…” Harry said, then sighed as he pointed to a blonde boy with screaming blue eyes who was currently chomping on a Crunch bar. “Everyone, this is Annie.” Harry said, but no one was paying attention.  Niall looked up slowly, saw Liam glaring at him, and made a face. He sighed and put the candy in Liam’s outstretched hand, then sat down on a chair and pouted, glowering at the taller boy.

“Niall, don’t give me that look. You asked me to help you cut down on how much candy you were eating.” Liam said sternly.

“‘You asked me to help you cut down on all the candy you're eating’…” Niall mimicked. He crossed his arms and looked down. I glanced into my purse to make sure I still had my emergency stash of Reece’s Cups, and Niall squeaked as Liam walked toward the trash can. He covered his eyes. “Oh, my goodness, he’s murdering a poor innocent candy bar…I can’t watch. I can’t watch--” Liam sighed and threw the candy bar into the trash can. Niall fell out of the chair and onto his knees. “NOOOOOOO!” He wailed. Liam rolled his eyes and walked back.

“Please don’t mind him,” he said to the people who were now staring at Niall. “He’s going through candy withdrawal.” Liam turned to pick up his bowling ball, and I snuck a Reece’s into Niall’s hand. He looked up at me, and I put a finger on my lips. His eyes widen, and he sticks it into his pocket, and throws his arms around me.

“YOUR GIRLFRIEND IS AN ANGEL!” Niall screamed to Harry.

“She’s not my girlfriend.” Harry said.

“I’m not his girlfriend,” I said at the same time.

“Whatever, now we have an even number. Let’s play as teams!” Zayn says with an evil twinkle in his eye.

“I call captain!” Liam yells.

“I nominate Zayn as other captain.” Harry said. Zayn and Liam stood next to each other, and Liam put a finger on his chin.

“Niall.” He said. Niall pumped his fist and joined Liam. Zayn looked at us.

“Haz.” He chose. Harry walked over and whispered something in Zayn’s ear. Zayn looked at Lou and smiled. Liam noticed and smirked.

“Louis.” He said. Louis trotted over, and Zayn smiled triumphantly.

“Annie.” He said. I hurried over, and Harry smiled. Zayn gave me a high five. “Harry said you're a jock?” He asked. I shrugged. “What do you play?”

“A little football (soccer) and my friend got me interested in basketball.” Zayn nodded.

“Cool. Let’s show Liam how to lose.”

“Oh, yeah? Well, I’ve got Niall, and you know how he is.” Liam said. Niall quickly crammed the rest of the Reece’s into his mouth and swallowed, then wiped his mouth. Zayn rolled his eyes.

“It is so on, Payne.”

“You’d better believe it, Malik.”

Harry leaned forward and whispered, “Told you they get weird. We’re just gonna have to use our secret weapon. That’s you, by the way.” I snickered and blushed.

“Hazzah is whispering sweet nothings into Annie’s ear!” Louis yelled. I blushed even more, and Harry rolled his eyes and sat back.

I convinced everyone to choose Hunger Games names, and we paired up so that someone on our team was going against someone on their team. It was Zayn (Finnick, because he ‘was very handsome’) against Liam (Gale, because he was serious); Harry (Peeta, because that was the only person he remembered) against Niall (Haymitch, because Niall like to drink Gatorade. I didn’t have the heart to tell him Haymitch didn’t drink that…); and me (Katniss, duh) against Louis (Effie, because he liked her hair). Louis sat at the table behind the computer. “Hello!” he bellowed in a deep dramatic accent. “You're watching ‘Bowling with the BOYZ!’ That’s ‘BOYZ’ with a z, not an s, and in all capitals, not all little letters, because WE ARE NOT LITTLE BOYS! We are men!” I cleared my throat. “And women,” he amended, “I’m here with two teams. Each with a common goal; to win. Let’s meet the contestants—or should I say, tributes!!!” We already had an audience, and Louis flailed dramatically at me. “Miss Katniss Everdeen!” He pointed to Harry and Zayn. “Peeta Mellark, and Finnick Whatever-your-last-name-is-so-I'm-just-gonna-call-you-sexy!” He gestured to Liam. “Over here, we have Gale Hawthorne, and Haymitch Drunk-On-Gatorade! And I am your host, Effie-Lou, The Tommo, Tomlinson! Happy Bowling Games! And…” here he made his voice unnaturally high. “May the odds be forever in your favor!” I bit back a laugh, but Niall was dying. He clutched his stomach and panted.

Liam walked up to the lane and threw his ball. He got a spare. Zayn did as well, Niall got 9 out of 10 pins, Harry got nothing on the first try but five on the second, and Louis got a gutter ball. I walked up, and bowled. The pins crashed into each other with a loud bang, and the TV flashed “Katniss…STRIKE!” Liam’s mouth was slack, and he stared at me.

“Beginners luck.” He said. I reached up and patted his head as I walked away.

“Sure, Liam, keep telling yourself that.”

“I will.”

X**************************X

To make a long story short, we won. When we added up all our points, Liam’s team got 211 pins. Zayn’s team got…DUN DUN DUUUUUUN! 310 PINS! One hundred and thirty of those pins were mine, 93 of them were Zayn’s, and 87 of them were Harry’s. Liam sulked at me, especially when I got two turkeys. In the individual point chart, Liam got first, with 131, I was second, Zayn was third, Harry was fourth, Niall with 65, and Louis got a whopping 16 points. Mostly because he was announcing everyone else’s turns and forgot about his own. He made Niall roll on the floor with laughter, but Harry told me that it wasn’t too hard to do.

We decided to go to Nando’s before we went home, and Zayn offered to drive me there.

“Um, I think I’m riding with Harry…” I said. Harry shot Zayn a look I couldn’t decipher, then Zayn cleared his throat.

“Right, right. Um, well, can we all have your number? You're one of us now!”

“Yeah, sure!” I dug my phone out from my pocket and handed it to Zayn. He tapped something in, then handed it to Niall, Liam and Louis. Louis handed my phone back and winked.

“See you at Nando’s, Annie. WAIT, ANNIE NEEDS A NICKNAME!”

“We could call her Striker,” Liam suggested, grinning at me.

“Well, that’s good for now.” Louis said. “I’ll think of something, don’t worry, Annie!”

“Thanks, Lou.”

I caught a ride with Harry to Nando’s. I had never been there before, so I was kinda looking forward to it, when my phone buzzed. I looked at the screen and groaned. Dad. I answered. “Hey, Dad!”

“Hey, Annie, listen, um… This is gonna sound bad…but I need you to come back home.”

“What? Why?”

“I have some things I need to do, and I need you to watch Danny.”

“Dad, I was about to go to Nando’s with some friends!”

“What? Who?”

“Harry, and some of his friends.”

“Are they guys?” I can hear the disapproval in my father’s voice.

“Yes.”

“How many of them are there?”

“Um…five, counting Harry.”

“Annie….” I could hear him sigh. “It’s not worth it. Hurry up and get home as soon as you can.”

“But Dad…”

Gwendolyn!” I flinched, and Harry glanced over at me. ‘Are you okay?’ he mouthed. I nodded.

“I’ll be home in a minute.” I said softly, then hung up.

“Do you need to leave?” Harry asked quietly. I nodded. “Okay, we’ll go, just text the boys.”

“No, you can just drop me off. I don’t live that far.”

“It’s raining, first of all. Secondly, I don’t want you walking alone. A beautiful girl walking down the road by herself? That’s trouble waiting to happen.” I blushed as he called me beautiful. “Text them, Annie.” He said. I sighed and pulled out my phone, a small smile coming onto my face as I saw what the boys had put their names in as.

From: Annie
To: ZAINEY MALIK, LILI PAYNE, EFFIE-LOU TOMLINSON, NIALLER HORAN
Hey, you guys, Harry’s taking me home.

From: EFFIE-LOU TOMLINSON
Well, that was quick… ;)

From: Annie
:P EWWWW! No, I have to go home and watch my little brother. My dad has some work thing he needs to go to.

From: EFFIE-LOU TOMLINSON
Ohhh I get it. ;P Niall wants to know if you want to come over and watch some movie’s with us on Friday at his house.

From: Annie
Sounds like fun! What time?

From: EFFIE-LOU TOMLINSON
He said about 6 to whenever we feel like stopping.

From: Annie
Sure! I’ll be there!

From: EFFIE-LOU TOMLINSON
Text us later, Striker, okay? Xx

From: Annie
Definitely! Xx

Harry pulled up to my house. “So did you at least have fun for a while?” he asked.

“Yeah, I had a lot of fun.” I said.

“Do you wanna do it again sometime?”

“Um, are you coming to Niall’s on Friday?”

“Yeah.”

“Then, yeah, how about Friday?” I asked. He grinned.

“That’ll work for me.”


 

 

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