It was Thursday, and Tori wouldn’t shut up about how hot Gideon looked whilst training, Chase looked like he wanted to strangle Gideon the next time he saw him. Of course he wouldn’t, looks like friends with benefits is getting to Chase.
“What’s with you?” Joey choruses jumping up to sit next to me on the wall, “Someone’s occupying your mind and you’re never with us.” He grumbles before gasping loudly, getting Tori, Chase’s and a few others attention, “Are you seeing someone?”
I groan as Tori giggles, clapping her hand excitedly, “Oh yay! Finally Annalisa!”
“No.” I interrupt, bursting her little bubble, “I’m not, I’ve got to go.” I grumble jumping off the wall. I’d avoided Kade and the tutoring sessions like the plague, ever since I woke up from him gently shaking me and telling me I’d rocked up drunk at his house.
But as much as I hated to admit it, my grades were getting a little better, I just needed his help for one question on the English sheet he gave me so I could start on the makeup essay that the teacher had set for me to hopefully get my grades up.
I wasn’t looking forward to it, Mathis would actually make me ask.
“Where the hell are you going?” Chase asks as I walk towards the door.
“Away from here.” I mumble, hoping they wouldn’t hear as I walk out and over to my bike.
All too soon I pull up at Kade’s Mathis’s house, taking off my helmet and leaving it on my bike. As I get closer to the door the sound of male laughter floats through an open window, hesitantly I ring the doorbell, the laughing doesn’t stop but a voice gets louder and louder. “Robin I swear man, are you being serious, that’s the oafs weakness?” Kade’s voice gets louder as he opens the door, laughing at the end.
I give him a quick up and down look before he looks at me, surprised at how good he actually looks and pulled off the worn denim jeans, that looked like they had a little grease on it, going up to a very nice fitting grey long sleeve shirt, his brown eyes widen behind his glasses as he then cocks his head, “Miss. Avoider,” He muses, “How can I help you Annalisa?” He adds seriously.
“I,” I start before running my hand through my blonde hair, “I need a hand I guess. It’s just one question.”
Kade chuckles at my obvious reluctance to asking for help, “Get in.” Before turning around, I follow him, shutting the door, a black haired guy sitting in the lounge room waves at me as we walk by.
“Hey it’s the girl from Monday night!” He grins taking a sip of what looked like beer.
I will myself not to blush and keep following Kade, “I’ll be back, keep yourself entertained Robin! Without out breaking anything this time!” He yells chuckling at what must be a good memory.
He leads us into the dining room, and leans against the table, I place my bag on the table and fish out the English, out the corner of my eye I watch him push up his sleeves a little bit and my eyebrows rise.
Was that? Is that? A tattoo?
The intricate design of what looked like a snakes head was peeking out from where he’d revealed his arm, it couldn’t be a tattoo. Of all people I expected to have a tattoo good boy Kade was on the very bottom of my list, even Chase didn’t have any tattoos yet.
“Annalisa?” A hand waves in front of my face and I look up and meet Kade’s brown eyes, “I don’t think you get the question, it’s simply asking your opinion on the outcome of the book,”
I frown, “Flip the page, I knew I’d need more lines so I answered it on the back, the last question.”
And that’s how I spent the next fifteen minutes talking about The Scarlet Letter with Kade, arguing the reasons for my answer with him. As I ranted why I thought that was a good answer I realise that Kade was looking at me with an amused look, his sleeves still pushed up, the snake head still visible, I tried not to let my eyes stay on it too long, I don’t think he realised he was showing it to me. “What?” I snap, probably a little too harshly, but it somehow made him laugh.
“That passion, the way you just argued you reasons and your answers,” He says shaking his head slightly, “You need to put that into the essay tomorrow when you do it. If you do that, you’ll get an easy A which will bring your grade up to a C, and a C is a pass Anna.”
My head snaps up when he calls me Anna, Georgia and Theresa were the only ones to call me Anna, but I found myself not minding all that much as I nod, “Alright, I should let you get back to your friend.”
“Oh don’t worry about me Miss. Tipsy.” I jump and spin around looking into the adjoining kitchen to see the black haired man rummaging through the fridge, wait did he just call me Miss. Tipsy?
“Dude.” Kade scolds, “My mum’s going to be wondering where all the foods going, she doesn’t know you’re here.” He says, as I head towards the door, giving a small wave but still listening to them, since they weren’t exactly quiet.
“Dude.” I hear the man, Robin, mock back, “Your mum doesn’t even know I’m here, we all know she don’t give a damn.”
And with that I close the door.
I knock back the drink and feel the liquid slide down my throat, tonight was the night, the semis. As usual Tori and Chase come over twenty minutes after the rest of us had been gathered already drinking.
Tori adjusting her skirt so it was around the right way and Chase pulls the shirt over his head, earning catcalls from the guys.
I scrunch my nose up and just take another swig of my beer, who was I to judge, if Tori wanted to screw around with everything that had a dick, so be it. “Who’s Gideon going up against?” I question getting everyone’s attention.
It was Chase who answered, “Four-Eyes, fuck man, he’s good.”
Joey’s arm slings around Chase’s shoulder, “And I found out why, he’s got Rob Jones helping him out,” All the boys let out low whistles.
“Damn, how’d he rope Rob back in,” One of the guys whistles, “I thought he detested fights.
“Get him a good fighter and he’s back in,” Tori laughs, “We all knew he’d be back. But he won’t win against Gideon surely.”
“Wouldn’t be too sure.” Yet another guys says, nervous about shit talking our own fighter and Tori’s ‘Buddy’, “I’ve seen Four-Eyes fight, and he’s good, the thing about having Rob on his side is that he knows their weaknesses, yet no one knows his, because no one knows who he is.”
“Come on.” Tori says, now worried, “The fights about to start.”
We all nod and walk into the arena, it was packed, excited chatter wrapped and engulfed us as we entered. “Ladies and gentlemen!”
And just like that, those three simple words, everyone went silent, anticipation in the air as we all wait, everyone thinking the same thing, ‘Surely Gideon had this.’
“It’s not yet the finals, but it is the decider, tonight’s battle is against our own GIDEON!” He roared the last word causing everyone who was from this town, which was most of us, to cheer loudly, including me, due to the alcohol in my system. “And from the town over, FOUR-EYES!” I was surprised at the cheers, it wasn’t as dominating, it was laced with many boo’s, but it was still loud, and that’s when it really hit, this was the semis and this guy had to be good.
“Welcome to the arena Gideon!” And out walks Gideon, bulky Gideon who looked like he’d been on steroids since birth, cheers echo around as he does a lap around, he looked confident, too confident, like he had this in the bag, tattoos laced his arms and chest and even a few on his legs.
My attention is drawn back to the ref as he coughs, “And Four-Eyes.”
Damn, he was good looking, black and white Nike sport sneakers, lean strong looking legs, black basket shorts with an orange strip up the side, a six pack, a bare chest, strong arms with a single tattoo twirled around one of his arms, a smirk on his face as he listened to the boos and cheers, warm almost familiar brown eyes and a mop of brown hair.
Wait, this looked like Kade just without glasses, and hot. My eyes flicker to the tattoo on his arm that kept going and in and out of my view, but there was no mistake, there was a snakehead there.
“Hey,” The familiar voice from yesterday chirps from next to me, and I spin to see the black hair of Robin, Kade’s friend, “If it isn’t Miss. Tipsy.” He grins tossing me a wink.
Robin. Rob. That was Kade, Kade was a fighter. Well fuck me.
"Robin!” I say confused, surely it wasn’t that couldn’t be Kade Mathis, my tutor, the good boy up there.
“Tipsy,” He replies smirking like he knew something I didn’t, “You seem genuinely surprised to see Kade up there, he played the nerd well. Of course he is a fucking smartass, no lie there.”
“A smartass with a massive fucking secret.” I can’t help but growl at Robin as I watch both Gideon and Kade take their shoes off.
As much as this wasn’t a clean fight, we had to take some precautions.
“Are you ready!” The ref yells, and I watch as Kade says something to Gideon, I don’t know what he said but Gideon tensed up and Robin starts to laugh. “Let the fight begin!”
Gideon doesn’t waste a second, his head down as he charges at Kade, Kade doesn’t move. And Gideon picks him up, tossing him over his shoulder.
Now this is the point where they usually struggle or land on their back or stomach, but Kade is now crouched down on the ground. “Come on Mathis.” I barely hear Robin mutter, “Punch him in the back of the right knee. The right knee is his weakness.”
How did he know? Gideon had had knee surgery there years ago, my mouth drops as sure enough Kade’s arm flies out landing a punch in the back of Gideon’s knee, causing Gideon to falter as he turned around letting Kade stand back up in a fighting stance, instantly pulling his arm back and giving Gideon a right hook straight to the nose.
Gideon stumbles back and my jaw drops as I see blood dripping down that must’ve been one hell of a punch. “Oh my,” I hear Tori gasp, “I think it’s broken.”
“Damn right it is!” Robin cheers, “Now just wait Kade, he’ll attack again soon enough, what you said at the beginning will have him still raging at you.” He adds quieter, half mumbling to himself.
And that’s what Kade did, he stepped back and stood up tall, waiting for Gideon to make his move. But that’s also when Kade turned to wink at Robin, that’s when Kade’s eyes slides over Robin to look at me, his mouth slightly a gape, if he hadn’t been in the middle of a fight against Gideon I would’ve found it slightly adorable. But Kade was in a fight, in the back of my mind I hear Robin and many other yell something at Kade, just as Gideon’s fist connects with Kade’s cheek causing him to stumble yet somehow stay standing as Gideon delivers another hit busting Kade’s lip.
Kade looked shocked, “He’s got to move. He’s got to do something.” I say worried.
I see Tori look at me strangely, “Are you more worried about Four-Eyes than Gideon?” She questions but I ignore her, my mouth, and many others, agape.
Kade’s leg swings out in a semicircular motion as he delivers a roundhouse kick, and damn that boy can lift his leg, Gideon was down.
“Is he?” I gasp, as Gideon doesn’t get back up.
“He’s out like a light.” Robin chirps proudly as whoops and cheers from all of ‘Four-Eyes’ supporters fills up the arena, “Come on Tipsy.” Robin grins, grabbing my arm and dragging me out to the back rooms where the competitors and anyone they allowed went, without looking or asking anyone Robin just ducked into one of them. “Mathis!” Robin suddenly cheers a few moments later.
I look up to see Kade staggering in, he tosses his shoes across the room and blinks rapidly rubbing his eyes, muttering the word fuck over and over, my eyes fall to his lip where blood was dripping down. Robin dashes to a duffle bag handing Kade something, and that’s when Kade started to take out what I believe to be contacts, I look away, I hated watching people take contacts out and put them in, they were like touching their eyeballs, I didn’t like it, “Anna.” Kade’s voice evades my thoughts and I turn to look at him sitting slumped on the floor, his arms wrapped around his knees as he lifts his head from between his legs and chest to look at me, “I’ll explain it to you,” He coughs, “But my drink and glasses are in that little bag.”
Before he finished the sentence I’d already started to open the bag pulling out the now familiar black glasses and a water bottle, walking over to him handing him the drink bottle, I kneel down in front of Kade, and after he takes a swig of his drink his brown eyes meet my blue ones.
I reach forward and place his glasses gently on his face, stroking his cheek to inspect the damage of the punch, watching him flinch under my gentle touch as I proceed to run a finger over his busted lip. “Damn fucking right you will explain this to me.” I mutter causing both him and Robin to laugh. “Fuck.” I mutter afterwards leaning back and sitting down, feeling Kade’s eyes on me.
“Care to explain?” Robin questions for the both of them.
“My friends are where I’m staying, and they’re my ride and as far as they’re concerned Four-Eyes here is the enemy.” I focus that part at Robin before turning on Kade, “Four-Eyes? Original, you don’t even wear your glasses.”
Kade shrugs and I can see his cheek reddening further from the punch, “Ironic I suppose.”
“I’ll tell you what’s ironic,” And I lean forward to Kade, so Robin can’t hear, Robin who sees what I’m doing and lets out an irritated hey. “The fact that society thinks you’re the Good Boy and I’m the Bad Girl. Yet I'm the softy and you're the fighter.”
With that being said I pull back and stand up, avoiding from looking at Kade, I don’t know where that had even come from. I start towards the door, thinking up excuses I could use for when I found Tori and the gang. “Hey.” Kade’s voice interrupts my thoughts once more and I can’t help but turn to look at him as he stands before me, “Where are you going? Where are you going to stay huh?”
I let out an “Uhm,” as he chuckles at me and I glance at Robin who was grinning, “Come on Tipsy, you’ve stayed at Mathis’s before. Just at least this time you aren’t as tipsy.”
Kade lets out a louder chuckle at his mates words, “I know you’ve wanted to ride my Impala 67 ever since you saw it in my driveway.”
By the way Kade and Robin laugh I just know my eyes have lit up, “Come on you two, Kade needs some ice on that cheek.” Robin says picking up the backpack, and I realised he already had Kade’s duffle over his shoulder. “You two in the back.” Robin orders opening the back door and Kade allows me in first before sliding in next to me.
Kade was right, I really did want to sit in this car. It was a great car.
“Upstairs first door on the right.” Robin instructs handing me two aspirins, a cold glass of water and an icepack wrapped in a chux cloth. “Make sure he takes them both, he can get quite stubborn, but you both seem to bring out something in each other.”
“What do you mean?” I mumble annoyed when he starts to laugh, following me up the stairs.
“You’ll figure it out sweetheart.”
And that’s all I got as he opened the door for me, and closes it behind me too.
My eyes going straight to the figure lying on the bed, Robin had made him come straight up stairs and change, saying he could shower in the morning, and now Kade was lying on his bed in just a pair of slacks. “Hand.” I murmur as he pushes himself into a sitting position, and I drop the aspirins in his hand laughing as he pulls a face at the little white pills. “Take them.”
Kade lets out a sigh and pops an aspirin at a time in his mouth knocking it back with water, before laying back down, I hold out the icepack and Kade places his hand over mine, leading it the injured side of his cheek. “Sit down.” Kade suddenly mumbles breaking me out of my thoughts.
Standing on the bed I climb over him and sit with my back against the wall, “What did you mean before?” Kade questions, looking up at me, squinting as I take his glasses off and place them on his bedside table, pressing his hand back down on his face to hold the icepack down. “About being a softy.”
I look away from his questioning warm brown eyes, “I just, Kade, there’s two people who know of my uh, how do I put it?” I trail off awkwardly, I wasn’t going to reveal anything until I knew him better.
Until? Where did that come from? What made me think I was going to stick around, he wasn’t good to be around, but he was like a drug to me.
“Only two other people who know you?” Kade suggests with a yawn at the end.
“Yeah, I’m just confused.” I whisper, running my fingertips down the uninjured side f his cheek, watching his eyes flutter closed, “What are you doing to me Kade Mathis?”
Kade shuffles a little, and I let out a small yelp as a hand wraps around my leg pulling me so I was laying down. “Annalisa Evans I believe I’m melting your defences.” He mumbles groggily, something tells me those aspirins make you drowsy, sure enough snores emit from his slightly open mouth and he nuzzles closer to me.
“Yeah, you are.” I murmur letting out a gasp as he wraps his arms around my waist, “You’re melting my defences away, leaving me bare.” I whisper letting my head lay a rest on his chest.