The Prickled Heart

If there is one girl any guy in Westerfield High is afraid of, it's Jesy McKinnley. Forget the fact that she may as well be the hottest chick in campus, she's off limits; and not in the way that you might think.

When the resident school magazine is one scoop away from completion (a.k.a. 'The Hottest Scoop of The Year') it's up to the not-so-awesome Rhys Miller to save the day with the hottest topic the editor-in-chief could come up with. Unluckily for him, it just had to be Jesy.

Rated [Yellow] for future scenes.


1. The Job





"Rhys!" the shout came from among the crowd of high schoolers doing their best to get everything they needed before the first bell rang. "Rhys!"

Rhys Miller grimaced, trying his best to ignore the call. Maybe that way she'd go away. "Rhys!" it came again, closer. A shadow loomed before him. Damn.

Rhys looked up, giving a sheepish smile to the girl standing in front of him. He knew exactly what she wanted, and frankly, he didn't want to do it.

"Oh my gosh, Rhys, are you deaf?" Yana Prinsloo asked in an exasperated voice. Not really. "I've been trying to call you for the last five minutes now!" I know, I just really wanted to ignore you, were the things that circulated his mind. He didn't voice it though, or else Yana would never think of leaving him alone.

"Sorry," he said instead, "I was trying to find my... Calculus book." He gestured to the trash-like state of his locker. Yana rolled her eyes as she reached out to pull something from it.

"This one?" she held out the thick blue paperback with the world CALCULUS printed on the front. Rhys hid his grimace as nodded.

"Thanks," he muttered, taking it from her. So much for an excuse.

"Listen," Yana started as Rhys slammed his locker door shut. "I need you to do me a favor."

Rhys did not hesitate to reply.

"Whatever it is, it's a no," he turned to walk away.

"But it's for the magazine!" Yana tried to reason, grabbing his arm. Rhys had no choice but to stop. "Please? You know that you're the best interviewer and writer in the publication. We'll fail without your help," She was giving him the guilt approach. Rhys rolled his eyes at this.

"Flattery would not help you, Yana. You know it won't," he said, shrugging her hand off. Yana huffed and crossed her arms instead as she blocked his way.

"And besides," Rhys couldn't help but add as she sidestepped her, "I already told you that I was done. I already passed the required two articles a month ago."

"But this is different!" she said as she followed him down the hall, "This is the Hottest Scoop Of The Year we are talking about. The IT-Scoop. This isn't one of your factual articles on the poisonous plants the school allegedly has. This, this is the reason the publication is still running; the reason why the students of Westerfield still bother to read the magazine..."

"And I told you before, I'd do anything but that stupid gossip column," he said.

"But it's not gossip ­per-se, Rhys. It's going to be factual. 100% unadulterated truth. That's why you're interviewing her," Yana smugly said. Rhys sighed, sensing that Yana's stubborn nature will never let him win.

"Alright, I'll do it. But if that person you want me to interview becomes nothing but an overbearing twit, I'm stopping," despite Rhys' half-hearted threat, Yana Prinsloo squealed and hugged him tightly. Rhys froze, remembering the last time she did this.

"Oh thank you, thank you, thank you! You are a lifesaver, Rhys Miller!" she exclaimed as she released him, "I'm going to e-mail her number to you later on so that the two of you can speak." Rhys knew that language very well. I'm going to give this person's number to you so that you can tell her that you want to interview her. Trust Yana to rely everything on him.

"And who may I ask, is this oh-so-wonderful she is?" his sarcastic tone was evident. "Why do you want me to interview her so badly?"

"The she I'm referring to is the reason most of Westerfield's population is insecure about themselves. The girl who single-handedly turned down every boy in school since anyone could remember," as she said this, Rhys' mind fleeted to a particular brunette. "The bane of every jealous girl's existence and most teenage boys' wet dreams...

Westerfield High's Cactus Queen."

Rhys wanted to scoff. Yeah right, not gossip my ass.




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