The next morning after getting ready, I walked out of the house and down the front steps like I usually did. The only difference was that I accidentally almost stepped on someone sitting on the sidewalk.
"Shit, sorry," I cussed, and then remembered I probably shouldn't have said that. "Uh, sorry."
"It's alright," Calum laughed from below me. He pushed himself off the ground and dusted off his black skinny jeans. He grabbed his backpack and slung it over one shoulder. "Are you always this clumsy in the morning?"
"Only when stupid guys are sitting in my way," I shot back, but smiled at him as we continued walking. "Why were you waiting for me?"
"I have to walk passed here to get to school anyway, so I figured why not?" he shrugged.
"Do you even have any other friends?" I asked jokingly.
"No," he answered smoothly. "I'm always perfecting spells or out with one of the boys. Everyone just thinks I'm some weird recluse."
"They're half right." I pointed out.
He laughed and nodded. "That they are."
Lunch rolled around and I stood in line like I always did. I got my pizza with cheap tomato sauce and tasteless French fries before grabbing a chocolate milk and purchasing my lunch. I grabbed a few napkins and went to walk to my next class where I usually ate lunch.
"Bridgette," someone said from behind me. I turned and saw Calum smiling down at me. "You can come sit with me if you want." I smiled and nodded. "Sounds good."
He led me over to his table towards the corner of the lunchroom. He sat by himself, not eating any food. He always had his notebook out. I found out he was actually writing Latin, but it was spells he was trying to memorize or improve on.
As I dabbed at the extra grease pooling on my pizza with a napkin, I glanced around the lunchroom. "You do realize practically everyone is staring at us, right?"
"Eh," he shrugged. "Its probably because I always sit alone and never talk to anyone. You'll probably get used to it."
"But they're whispering to each other."
Calum mumbled something under his breath that I couldn't make out before he put his pen down and looked at me curiously. "Then let's leave."
"Let's just leave." he repeated, getting up and putting his notebook in his bag.
I looked up at him in shock. "Like...ditch school?"
"Duh," he chuckled, slinging his bag on one shoulder. "What, have you never ditched before?"
I shook my head.
"Well, you're going to start to if you're going to be hanging around us," he said, taking my pizza and dropping it on some other person's table. "I'll buy you some real pizza."
Calum lifted my bag off the ground for me, waiting for me to stand and take it. When I did, he took my hand and weaved me through the tables and out of the cafeteria, practically dragging me since he was trying to sprint out of there. We exited the Main Building and walked straight off campus without anyone saying anything. He finally slowed down after we were off of the campus. "How did no one even say anything to us?" I wondered.
"While you were too busy caring about what other people thought," he began in an annoyed sort of tone. "I was looking for my invisibility spell. The one I've been using wears off quickly, though, which is why we had to run. I planned to ditch with you either way. But I'm still trying to perfect that one spell to make it longer..."
"Speaking of invisibility," I said slowly, remembering what happened the night before with Michael and Jeremy. "No one ever told me that ghosts can just disappear."
"I thought that was a given," he stated with a shrug. "Michael and Luke can make themselves disappear and reappear wherever they want. They can make themselves seen and invisible to certain people as well. It's just kind of hard because they actually have to somewhat concentrate to do so. It's hard to hold up a conversation and worry about the people around you."
"Well my brother now thinks he's going crazy," I laughed to myself. "Which I'm completely okay with. Maybe Luke and Michael should scare the shit out of him sometime."
"Don't give them any ideas," Calum warned, trying to suppress a smile of his own. "They can be really...dark sometimes."
We ended up walking to Ashton's house. Calum knocked on the door but got no reply. He sighed and said something about Ashton sleeping all the time. He opened the door and instructed me to just sit on the steps while he went to find Ashton. He closed the door, leaving me by myself. I thought about Ashton. His entire family was dead. Wait, couldn't they just answer the door if they're dead? Michael and Luke can function just fine being dead. Calum didn't even say anything about bringing his family back. If he did, who paid for their coming back?
The door opened and Calum stepped outside, dragging Ashton along behind him. Ashton looked absolutely exhausted. He had his sunglasses in one hand. His eye was still a faded purple, reminding me I still didn't know where his black eye came from. His hair was messier than usual, flopping in his face. He looked at me and his face brightened slightly.
"You literally sleep all damn day." Calum complained, leading Ashton down the steps. I stood and followed.
Ashton just sighed at his friend, tugging his arm away as he went around the side of his car to the driver's seat, and placed his sunglasses on his face. Calum opened the door and I got in the back again. Calum fixed the seat and slid in as Ashton turned the engine on. He backed out of the driveway and continued to drive down the street to the intersection Michael, Ashton, and I had walked to when I first arrived.
"Where are we going?" I inquired.
"I told you, already," Calum said from the seat in front of me. "I'm taking you for some real pizza." Ashton grunted and jabbed Calum in the arm.
"Okay, Ashton's taking us for pizza," Calum corrected, but then added, "But I'm buying."
Ashton nodded; pleased with the fact he was given credit for using up his gas to take us to a pizza place. He still didn't say anything, and I just started to wonder how someone could stay so quiet for so long. Calum turned the radio on low to at least have something playing in the background. He opened the middle console and started digging around in it. He came out with a CD and popped it in. It was The Killers. I recognized them because my dad used to listen to them all the time when he worked in the garage back at my old house.
The ride to the pizza place was short. It was little run-down looking shop at the corner of a side street and the main road. When we walked in, however, it was decently full. It was small, so that probably helped make it look packed, but every seat was actually taken. It was full of kids that probably skipped just like Calum and I.
"Extra cheese okay?" Calum asked.
"Yeah, perfect." I nodded, and Ashton just gestured to me and nodded. Whatever she wants.
"Alright, go find a bench outside," he instructed. "I'll order it."
Ashton took my hand and led me outside and around the side of the shop. There were three wooden benches set up with the giant umbrellas over them. Luckily, today wasn't too bad out. It was a decent temperature and the sun was out. Ashton played with his sunglasses as he smiled at me. "Why do you still wear those if Luke isn't even around?" I questioned.
His mouth formed a line as he sighed and shrugged. He couldn't explain using gestures. That was the problem with talking to Ashton.
"Wait," I almost shouted, thinking of a way he could tell me. "Can you type it out on your phone?"
Ashton opened his mouth and inhaled slowly. After a moment, he exhaled loudly and slid his phone out of his pocket. He pointed at me and tapped on his phone. What's your number? I gave it to him and he began typing away. My phone buzzed. I added his number into my contacts before reading over his text.
From Ashton Irwin:
I can't tell you. Its a secret. ;)
I glared up at Ashton who was smiling at his little joke. "Ha ha."
He giggled at himself like a little kid. Calum walked up behind him and sat next to him on the bench, leaving me sitting by myself. He set the pizza box down on the table and handed us each a cold can of Coke. I opened mine as Ashton flung the box open and grabbed a piece.
"Calum," I began, lifting a piece out of the box. "Why does Ashton always wear his sunglasses even when Luke isn't around?"
Calum looked over at Ashton who lowered his sunglasses slightly to stare at him. Then Calum looked back at me and shrugged. "That's his own business."
I groaned. "Seriously?"
"He's promised me things so I've promised him things," he said. "You'll be doing a lot of that with us. Keeping secrets is a big thing. You've already started that, though.
The ghost thing. That was something I wouldn't be able to tell anyone. Or the thing about black magic. I'd only been here four days and I already had four boys holding things over my head.