Chapter 6: Rejection
I sat in the bleachers beside Alexander and Eric and my parents. After I introduced them all to Alexander, they wouldn't shut up. I looked over at the field and spotted number 13, my brother. He was running on the field like he was some dummy and number 26 was right on his track, Lucas. I looked throughout the field and noticed that Ian, number 3 was talking to some cheerleader on the field. My heart quenched in my chest and I looked down. I couldn't let my feelings override this day. This was a big day.
The players took their spot on the field and the game began. I couldn't help to look over on the sidelines and search for Kaleb, but I couldn't cause Eric kept directing my face towards the field where the action was. Lucas had the ball and he had run nearly close to the touchdown spot, when he was nearly tackled by two other guys twice his side. I stood up and sighed just like the rest of everybody else did. One of the guys helped him up once the whistle blew and you could tell that he was just fine.
I sat back in my seat and observed the field. I didn't know much about football, but I knew the basics. If you made it to your goal then you got a point. End of discussion. Usually I would be eager to sit through one of these games, but I just couldn't force myself to sit through the whole thing. I kept nodding off, playing with my phone and looking around aimlessly.
Near the end of the game, I looked at the score. We were winning and of course we were going to win. We had never lost to this school before. Ian ran with the ball and he was doing a good job of shaking the players, but that came right back on him. As soon as he shook a player, another one jolted him right in his side, knocking the air out of him. I stood up with speed as I took in the scene. The coaches ran over to him, but he still wasn't getting up.
"Oh no." No other word escaped my lips. I left my post at the bleachers and ran down out of the bleachers and around to the gym and out onto the open field where they were barely hauling him back to sit down.
"How did I know that you would come?" He asked as he scrunched his face when he sat down.
"Cause I'll always be your knight in shining armor." He smiled at me as I sat beside him. "Where'd they get you at?"
"Right in the shoulder-blade. It knocked the wind outta me."
The coach came up to him. "Lowington. You're alright?"
"Just as good as ever."
"With a shoulder like that you won't be able to play." Ian cringed and looked down. "And there isn't anyone that could take your place."
Ian's face brightened as he looked down the bench. "Get that Jones kid."
"He's sitting there." Ian lifted his long arm and pointed at a player. Number 41.
The coach shook his head. "That's a newbie Lowington." Liam and Lucas strode over. "You know that I can't have newbies out on the field just yet."
"What's going on?" Lucas asked. He looked at me. "What are you doing over here princess?"
"I was coming to see if Ian was okay. Is that a sin?"
Liam's jaw clenched. Lucas sighed and turned from me to the coach. "What's the hold up?"
"He needs another player and he doesn't want to use the new kid."
"Well, he's our only hope. He's really good coach," Liam said.
The coach sighed, rubbed his head and then looked at Kaleb. "41!" He screamed. Kaleb looked up and walked over to us. "You're in."
During the last few minutes of the game, I stayed by Ian's side and got him whatever he needed (water, candy, etc). Kaleb was actually really good. He scored the last point in the game and everyone cheered for the newbie. Even the coach was mildly surprised at how good that he played.
After the game finished, I helped Ian up. Just as we were about to leave, Kaleb rushed over and helped me carry Ian. He carried him all the way out to his car.
"Thanks," Ian said as he sat in the passenger's seat.
"Thank you. The coach told me that you asked to put me in to fill your spot. That was my big break."
Ian smiled. "It was no big deal. I couldn't play, so I wanted someone who could play just as well."
He smiled. "I suppose you're going to the hospital to get that arm checked out?"
"Yeah." Ian tried to move his arm. "The coach told me that it wasn't that big of a deal, but Briana just won't give up on taking me so I gave in."
I smiled. "Hey. My job is to keep you safe."
"So I've heard." Ian shut the passenger door and I strode over to the driver's seat. Kaleb was behind me.
"You played a good game," I said before I got into the car.
Kaleb nodded. "Football is kinda my thing. Just like web showing is kind of yours."
"Well I see that now. Well, I mean I saw that when you were playing. I mean y'know during try-outs?" Dammit. What was this? Why was I stumbling over my words?
Kaleb just smiled at me. "Just keep your boyfriend safe. You're kinda good at that."
I was about to agree with what he said, until what he said replayed in my mind. "No. You've got it all wrong. Ian and I aren't a thing."
"Really Briana? That's not what everyone else thinks."
"Well they know how he and I are. I mean..."
"I saw you both today." I raised an eyebrow. "Hugging or whatever. Your window was open and when I walked past mine and I kind of saw you."
I bit my lip. "That's not what you think it was. I was having a bad day earlier. I can't explain it." He gave me a look like he didn't believe me. "Well you're new. So apparently you wouldn't know."
"So you're twisting this on me?"
"I didn't do anything. You're just believing false pretenses. Ian and I are just friends. Have been for about five years. I don't know what else you want me to say."
"I guess I don't know what I want to hear either." He took a step back. "I'll see you tomorrow Briana."
"Tomorrow is Saturday."
"Oh. Your brother didn't tell you?"
I raised an eyebrow. "Tell me what?"
"About his party?" My mouth gaped open. "Ooh. Maybe I wasn't supposed to tell you."
"No. But I'm glad that you did."
I drove Ian to the doctor and at the doctor's office, the doctor said that he had pulled a muscle and he should lie off of that arm for a while. I wasn't paying attention. All I could think about was the casual argument that I had with Kaleb. Was he mad at how close Ian and I were or was he jealous? I couldn't quite tell, but one thing was for sure: he didn't like the fact that we were anything. For some reason I think that my brother had gotten into the circle of his mind.
Ian was okay to drive home and so he did. I, on the other hand, avoided talking and turned the radio up as high as it could go. Ian didn't sense anything. All he did was drive me to my house, drop me off, and sped off. He didn't ask me one question about what Kaleb and I talked about. Quite frankly he didn't care.
Once I entered the house, it was like I walked right into an argument, one that I anticipated.
"You don't listen Liam!" My sister Elizabeth was screaming out at him. "Mom and dad aren't gone for ten minutes and you're already scheduling a party!"
"Gosh Liz. Out of anyone, I thought that you'd be happy that I did something that would keep our spirits up instead of sitting around and doing nothing."
"Well Liam. If mom had wanted you to throw a party, she would have said that, but she didn't. Plus she's pregnant and she doesn't need another reason to be stressed."
"Liz is right," I said budding into the conversation. "I mean. C'mon Liam. Don't abide by mom and dad's rules."
"Oh who asked you princess?" Lucas asked.
I rolled my eyes. "What has Eric said about this?"
"He said as long as we clean up."
"Well then Briana and I won't be here for this bloodbath of a party. We'll go to someone's house," Liz said.
"All the cheerleaders were invited," Lucas said.
"I could go to Ian's house."
"He was invited too," Liam said.
I raised an eyebrow. "I thought that you didn't like Ian."
"Well I'm not gonna sugar code that, but I don't."
"Then why would you think of inviting him to one of your parties?"
"Anything to keep you here." I shrugged.
"Well I'll just go next door."
"Kaleb was invited too."
"Ha!" I screamed louder than I anticipated. "He has a brother named Alexander. And his brother probably never got invited."
The room ticked in silence. I was the first one out the door with Elizabeth on my tail and with Lucas and Liam right behind her. Alexander's house was about fifteen steps away, but it felt like a lifetime. Elizabeth ran ahead of me since she was more athletic. I felt someone catch me by the waist and twist me behind them.
"You really need to run more often princess," Lucas hissed in my ear.
"Oh c'mon," I said just as Liam passed us up. "Put me down!"
But he didn't. He carried me all the way over to Kaleb's open front door where his parents stood.
"Oh," his mother said putting her hands on her face. "You're the little web show girl who Alexander was talking about."
I smiled as I escaped from Lucas' grasp. "Yeah. That's me."
"Well I'll be," his father said. He stepped away from the door. "Why don't you kids come on in." We all hesitated a moment, until Lucas pushed me inside the house and they all followed along.
His parents led us to the kitchen and we sat down at the dining table. "Oh honey," his mother said to me. "Alexander is upstairs if you wanted to talk to him."
I smiled as I looked over at Lucas and Liam. "I would love to." She led me upstairs and to his room. I thanked her and knocked on the door.
"C'mon in. It's open." When I opened the door, I think that it surprised him a little. "Briana," he said standing up from his bed. "What are you doing here?"
"Just stopping by." He hugged me and I sat on the edge of his bed. "We all were."
"Me, my sister, my brother and Lucas."
"Your brother Eric?"
"No. He was asleep I think. My other brother. The one on the football team." He nodded. "I came to tell you to not go to the party that we're having tomorrow."
"Oh, so you forbid me too?"
"I kinda do."
"Oh, so Kaleb gets to go have fun and I don't?"
"I don't either. My sister and I are going on a strike from parties. We were wondering if you just wanted to hang out with us?"
He smiled at me and then looked down. "Yeah. That'd be swell." I smiled and hugged him for support. I still felt this weird vibe coming from Alexander that I hadn't felt in a while.
"Oh yeah. I have to do the show tonight. I was wondering if you'd like to be in it?"
"Who's all going to be in it tonight?"
"Um. I'm not sure. Liz wanted to. I think Liam did also."
"So Lucas wanted to also?"
He shrugged. "Sure." I smiled and stood up. "What is tonight's topic?"
"Friends and family I think. Liz came up with it."
"So can Kaleb join us?"
I stopped and looked at him. Apparently he didn't know about the disagreement that Kaleb and I had earlier. I couldn't help but blushing a bit when he brought Kaleb's name up. I turned and looked away.
"You can ask him."
"Actually, I have to shower. How about you ask him?" I hesitated before Alexander placed his hands on my shoulders. "He's right across the hallway. If he tries to do anything scream."
I knocked on Kaleb's door a few times before he answered. He was shirtless and sweating just a bit. I stumbled back a little as he looked me up and down.
"What are you doing here?" I opened my mouth to speak and then I stopped. My voice was gone. I heard laughter coming from downstairs. "Who's all downstairs?"
"My brother and Elizabeth.." My voice trailed off. Why was I so nervous around him? He was just the same as earlier.
"Cat got your tongue Briana?"
"Sorry." I stepped back and was about to walk off, but he grabbed my arm and pulled me into the warmth of his room. He shut the door and looked at me as I stood against the wall.
"What's your problem?"
Great. What was my real problem? Was it the fact that I have started getting nervous each time that I try to talk to Kaleb? Was it the fact that I blush and my mouth goes dry when I try to talk to him?
"Nothing. I was just going to um invite you to be on my show tonight. Y'know, my web show?" It took a lot out of me just to say that.
He eyed me and then sat down on the edge of his bed just looking at me. What was going through his head, was what I really wanted to know.
"Y'know, ever since I bumped into you this morning, you've been acting weird."
"So have you." He closed his mouth. "All I did was ask you a question."
"Well no. That's the answer."
Woah, my whole ego deflated after that. "Well fine. That's all I wanted to know." And I turned and walked out of his room feeling my stomach drop to my feet.
AbBa - Omg! No. Don't tell the story! Haha. No. It's a lot of twists and turns you will never see coming. I promise you that.
Shruti - Thank you so much. You don't know how much that means. Who do you like together?
Koushani - I'm not even gonna lie. Ian is my favorite character ever. And I'm going to make a poll on pictures. I don't know if I wanna post some or not.
Rhyia - I love how you said it's like your own TV show. I love that. I think it's like one of those dramedy? Y'know? Like Gossip Girl kind of.
Plz Write More - I try to write as much as I can for you guys, so I don't have to keep you all waiting, but school is like a pain in my bum.
Caroline - Hmm... Maybe. I don't know.
Ali - You really want me to post pictures? I've thought about it. I'm just not sure... Ooh. And you'll have to read on to know.