J, B, and C

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Isabelle, also known as Izzy is about to have a summer that she won't forget. She lives across the street from her two best friends, who also help her embarrass herself in front of their friend who she is secretly crushing on. The summer brings a turn of events and fast forwards into the future when Izzy is dealt a hard hand of cards and she has to decide what she is going to do.

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8. Chapter Eight

As Conrad and I approached the booth, I saw a girl who was working it start to check him out, as usual I felt my stomach boil with angst but then decided that I just needed to forget about all the girls checking him out.  It's not like we were dating anyways. Heck, it's not like we were even anything anyways.

Conrad stepped up to the booth and placed both his hands on the counter, then leaned forward a little bit and squinted his eyes so he could see the menu even though he already knew what he was going to get,

"I'll take two caramel apples please," he helped up to fingers and smiled at the girl.  The girl didn't say anything back but I just from the smile on her face I knew that she was glad she got to take his order.

"You didn't have to get me my apple, I could have paid for it myself," I said in almost flat annoyed tone.  I didn't need his charity. I crossed my arms over my chest and looked around the crowd.  

"Nah, it's not problem.  I owe you anyways for dragging you along tonight," He smiled at me the placed his hands in his pockets.  I smiled back and then looked around the booth at all of the workers.  I watched the girl stab the apples with a stick as she would casually glance back at Conrad to see if he was watching her.  He wasn't, I would know because I was casually sneaking glances at him myself.  He was looking around him, like he was looking for someone.

"Looking for someone?" I elbowed him.

"Hm? Oh, no. I was just seeing what other stuff there was to do here," he smiled at me.  The girl cleared her throat and handed Conrad the apples,

"Here you go, two caramel apples," she said. I watched her hands and as C grabbed the apples she purposely brushed her hands against his. 

"How much?" he said

"Oh, it's on me," she winked at him. He gave her a smile and said 'thanks' and then handed me my apple.

I glanced at the girl as he handed me my apple and as soon as she saw that he got the second one for me I could tell she was pissed.  She obviously didn't see me standing next to him, or she just assume I wasn't with him because lets be real, why would someone as attractive as Conrad be with me? She threw me a dirty look and then said,

"Actually, that'll be six dollars please," she crossed her arms over her chest and raised one of her eyebrows. 

I almost choked from laughing when I took a bite out of my apple because of course she would be mad that someone like me would be with someone like him.

Conrad glanced at me and gave me a smile like he was trying to contain his laughter too, so he quickly handed her a ten and said, "Keep the change." I turned around my heel and Conrad followed me.

"Well she was mad that I was with you," I said finally being able to let laughter loose.

He chuckled, "Yeah, I think she was trying to flirt with me," he shrugged his shoulders and then took a huge bite out of his apple.

I turned to him and made my eyes huge, "You think?! Con, she was ​definitely trying to flirt with you. But then she saw me and you pissed her off."

"Eh who cares.  She was probably just jealous because you were prettier than her anyways."

I actually choked that time. Did he just call me pretty? Playing it cool I just laughed a little and shook my head. Before I knew it Conrad took a detour and turned to his right and started walking to a booth. 

"Wha-?" 

"C'mon. Lets play! It'll be fun!" He said to me as he put his hand on the small of my back and led me to a booth.  It was a bottle toss booth. 

"Uh, Con....I'm really not good at games, I think we should just go back and find the other guys...." I said trying to keep in mind that I was still mad at him for flirting with lilac shorts girl even though I had no right to be.

"Just one game," he held up the number one with his hand. I rolled my eyes and approached the booth.  There was no worker there. 

"There's no one here. Let's just go," I said as I turned around.

"Hey guys, sorry. I'm stuck working two booths tonight," I heard a male voice say behind me. I turned around and saw the same guy working the booth Brandon and I at earlier tonight now at the booth I was at with Conrad. 

We made eye contact and he clearly remembered me because he said, 

"Oh, hey again," he smiled at me and then looked at Conrad. In my head I kept thinking if he was wondering why I was at a different booth with a different boy. It probably looked like I was on two dates when in reality, this was far from the case. 

"You guys know how to play?" he asked us but his eye contact stayed consistent with me.

"Yeah, how much?" Conrad asked with a loud voice as he reached into his back pocket for his wallet.

The boy looked at me and said, 

"Tell ya what, if she makes three of these rings onto those bottles then its on the house," he smiled at me then turned round to grab some wooden rings for me to toss. 

"What a cheeseball," Conrad leaned in to whisper in my ear and while my heart was beating so fast from him being so close I didn't agree with him. I thought the boy was just being nice.

"You ready?" he handed me five wooden rings. I nodded and took them. 

I took my first shot and it landed right the top of the glass bottle.

"Very nice," the boy clapped, "Two more."

"Yeah, good job Iz," Conrad said as he placed one had on my shoulder. But he left it there while I eyed up my next target and my hand started to sweat. Why was he getting so close with me? 

I shot the next one and it landed on another bottle without a fuss. The boy gave me a look like he was impressed and so with that I took my next shot.  My first three shots and they all landed on the bottles. I jumped in the air, and after I did I felt embarrassed because I reacted like a little girl. Conrad gave me a high five and right after I gave him one the boy raised his hand for one too.

"I guess it's on the house," I smiled at the boy, trying to flirt. Partially because I wanted Conrad to notice but also because the boy seemed nice.  It was summer, a little fun wouldn't hurt me.

"I guess it is," he said as he reached over and grabbed the rings that were on the bottles. I watched him do so, and as he reached for the last one he looked over at me and smiled. 

"Good job Iz, we can go no. You're right. This wasn't fun," Conrad grabbed my hand but I pulled away.

"What? No. Let's play again. I wanna see if you can beat me," I wiggled my eyebrows up and down.

"I don't wanna play," he said in a low voice and his arm brushed mine.

"So..." the boy cut in, "are you guys locals? Or are you visiting?"  he asked looking back and forth between us.

"We're just visiting for the summer. It's a ten hour drive from where we're from," I smiled and leaned my hip against the booth.

"How about you?" I asked. I snuck a glance at Conrad and he was staring at the boy waiting for his response.

"Local kid," he smiled. Conrad made a little grunt noise and I saw him roll his eyes. Ignoring him I said,

"Do you go to school around here?" 

"About thirty minutes away. I'm gonna be a junior. You?" 

"Sophomore," I said and suddenly I felt really self conscious of myself. He was older than me and he was paying attention to me. He probably saw me as a little kid now that he knows I'm younger than him.

"Really? You look a lot older," he said with a shocked look.

"Really?" I scrunched my nose up.

"Oh yeah, especially because you're so pretty," he said and I couldn't help but notice the apples of his cheeks get a little pinker as he said it. He kept laughing and looking at the ground.

"So, how long have you two been dating...?" He asked and immediately I started busted out laughing.

"We," I took my finger and motioned back and forth to Con and I, "We are not dating. He's like my brother," I said still laughing.

"Well you must have a boyfriend, what about that boy I saw you with earlier?" he asked again.

"Nope, also like a brother." I smiled shyly.

"So...you're single?" he asked and he smiled at me while he scratched the back of his head. Before I could answer we got interrupted.

"Ok, thats enough," Conrad cut in, "We really have some where to be. Nice meeting you....?" 

"Luke," the boy answered.

"Luke. Nice meeting you Luke," Conrad grabbed my forearm and started pulling me away.

I turned around, 

"It was really nice meeting you Luke. I'm Isabelle but everyone calls me Iz or Izzy, you can call me whatever," as soon as I said it I realized my word vomit was happening and I needed to clean up my mess.

"Not that you need to call me anything. I mean, ha what I meant was," I took a deep breath, "What I meant was my name is Isabelle but people call me Izzy and I totally just made a fool out of myself with my word vomit so I apologize." I laughed trying to play it off as cool as I could.

"You make word vomit very cute. It was nice meeting you Isabelle. Hopefully we run into each other soon," Luke smiled. He had dimples in each cheek. Damnit he was even cuter now.

"I hope so too," I smiled back before Conrad pulled me away. He kept pulling me and I kept trying to take his hand off my arm but he wouldn't let go.

"Conrad!" I shouted but he kept walking. 

"Ow! Conrad stop you're hurting me!" I shouted so loud other people looked over at us. Immediately he let go and he looked at me and his eyes looked scared and his face was red.

"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to hurt you," he said quietly. 

"It's okay," I laughed because I couldn't actually stay mad at him. 

"Why did we need to leave? He seemed really nice," I said.

"Ha, yeah nice. Trust me Iz, that's what guys like him do. They're local boys who hit on girls who visit because they know they'll never have to see them once the summer is over. It's what they do, I'm just trying to protect you," he scoffed.

"Oh, so what? Is it so hard to believe that someone like him could actually like me? Because I'm just some little girl who you and Brandon and Jax always have to protect? I can take care of myself you know." I said and my tone was more pissy than I intended for it to be but I couldn't help it. Of course Conrad would't believe that someone older like him could like me.

"What? No, I didnt-"

I cut him off,

"No, It's cool. You don't have to say anything." I held my hand up, "I get it, lets just find the boys." I said as I walked off without him. I heard him call my name and follow after me but we both stayed quiet. 

I was mad at Conrad for thinking that but I was mad at myself that I was actually mad at Conrad. I was mad that I still liked him even though I knew I never was gonna have a chance with him. Starting right now, operation 'Move On From Conrad' has commenced I told myself. I looked back over my shoulder and saw him catching up to me and when he gave me an apologetic smile, and my heart sped up a little bit, I knew this operation was going to be a lot harder than I wanted it to be. 

 

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