"Briana I need you," those were the words that usually set me in a rally, but not tonight. Not at 2 a.m.
"Adam," I muttered into the receiver of my phone, "you’ve got to be fucking kidding me."
I heard a sigh on the opposite end of the receiver. Sitting up, I rubbed my eyes and sat stationary in bed. Something wasn’t right here. Adam Longhart, the quarterback for our school, the most beloved human being on earth hated me. I knew this because when I helped his girlfriend – excuse me – ex girlfriend break it off with him in light of him being a not so nice person. So, like I expected, he came at me with a fist and a frown. He stated that if I ever interfered with his life again, he would pummel me as he would a 'dude'. Emphasis on dude, please. But the strange thing was, here he was calling me in the middle of the night asking for my help.
And who was I to turn down a person in need?
"Please... I need you. I’m at 809 Lanesberry Dr." Click.
"Adam?" I stared at my phone and then placed it against my ear again, "Ad- this isn’t real?" Throwing my phone down on the bed, I threw my comforter over the other end of the bed, startling my dog, Axton. Usually, he would be the one to wake me up in the middle of the night, but seeing how it was the other way round, he just followed me to the bathroom and kneeled beside the door.
Leaning over the counter, I sighed and let my head droop, '2 a.m'. I shook my head and then looked up at myself in the mirror. My hair was in different shades of brown and black and danced around my shoulders, my eyes were usually a very chocolaty brown, but right now they were the brightest that I had ever seen. My skin was in a riptide of brown.
Tilting my head to the side, I tried to figure out how I got this far being the person that I was. How did I become, this fixer in a town that is majority something that I am not.
How did they seem to trust me with all of this?
I looked over at Axton and he was already staring at me. "I have to go fix today Ax."
Ten minutes later, I was in my dad’s SUV and driving down the street towards Lanesberry which was in the next town over. Our town, Coxton, was not a big town at all. It bled into about two other towns: Milton and Rona. Milton was twice the size of our town and Rona was twice the size of Milton. Adam, like the other riches, lived in Rona. His father was a big shot lawyer who didn’t know what the word ‘no’ meant and Adam was just like his daddy.
I pulled up in front of 809 Lanesberry and I realized that there was no way that this was Adam’s house. I stepped outside in the makeshift outfit that I had put on for this – jeans, white shirt, and boots – and made my way to the other side of the SUV. The house was dark and it was small.
I pulled out my phone, sent out a text to my best friend, noting that if I didn’t make it back home safe and sound, I was at this address with Adam Longhart.
I walked up to the house and placed two raps on this door, and in a matter of seconds the door opened, but it wasn’t Adam who had opened it. This guy was big and bulky; he sized me up and down.
"You Briana Wilkens?"
I looked at him and then slightly behind him. "Depends, on who’s actually asking."
The guy glared at me and then stepped aside for me to walk in. I did so hastily and he shut the door right behind me. He looked at me and smiled, "He’s right back here."
The big bulky guy led me down a straight and narrow hallway. The lights were a bit dim and if I didn’t know any better, I would have thought that he was leading me to my death. He stopped and turned at a little brown door that was almost off its hinges.
I looked from the door to the bulk master. He indicated with his head, suggesting that whomever I needed, was right behind that door. I raised an eyebrow and he smiled and walked off.
I looked to my left and then to my right, before I realized that I was already in too deep to chicken out now. Plus, I lived off on adventure, new things, and living life. This was who I was.
Pushing the door open, I noticed Adam pacing back and forth. Upon seeing me, a sigh of relief escaped his throat, "I knew that you would come." He stopped and crossed his arms and smirked, "You couldn’t resist coming to 'fix' someone."
I clenched my jaw and held my ground, "If you need something, let me know, because I don’t mind helping you, but if you just wasted my time, then I’m leaving." I turned to leave, but I felt a hand on my arm.
I looked back and he was staring at me. "I’m sorry, I don’t mean to be an ass. I do really need your help."
I turned around and he stood back and glared at me. Adam was a good-looking boy, he had black eyes and hair to match. His build was big and bold and his skin was extremely tan; he’d been playing a lot of football these days.
"What do you need?" I glanced around, "and where are we?"
I took in where we actually were at this time, a bathroom. The shower was disgusting and the toilet had dirty brown water in it, and I hoped it wasn’t at all what I expected it to be.
"We are somewhere I feel safe," I sighed as he leaned against the makeshift sink, "and that is not many places these days." He sighed and I stayed composed. "I called you here, because I think that coach might kick me off the football team."
I felt a twitch in my eye, "like I said on the phone earlier, you’ve got to be fucking kidding me." His face turned into one of confusion. "You got me out of bed at two in the morning, on a Saturday night to tell me about a problem that could wait until Monday morning? Are you serious Adam?"
"Can I finish the rest?"
"Sure, let’s see how you can make this any better."
He clenched his jaw and crossed his arms, "Coach thinks that I’m doing steroids to make my plays better. The weeks during the summer where we did some training, I got better and bigger. Last week, he said that he might have to cut me because he couldn’t have a cheater, right before the first game. My father said that if I let go, that’s it for me. That’s my last straw."
"Well," I started as I paced, "are you doing steroids?"
He studied me. "Well, yeah. I’m getting better."
"Then there’s your answer. Stop doing steroids and you’ll still be the shining quarterback. Is that it? Can I go now or is there another senseless problem that I need to fix?"
Adam sighed long and hard. "You don’t get it!" I studied him as he continued to speak.
"I can’t stop using them," he looked me in my eyes, "there’s no way in hell that I would even be sort of good, if I quit. We can’t have a half ass football player – let alone the damn quarterback fail at the job he’s supposed to be good at. I got college sponsors coming to watch me for the first football game of the year, Briana!" I clenched my jaw, "and I want this. I will do anything for it. I can't be a better quarterback without the cheats. I promise."
I glared at him. His face was tense and his muscles almost bulged out of his shirt. I looked in his eyes and he was studying me intently, "when was the last time you used?"
"Three weeks ago and I’m getting flabby and…"
"When is the first game?" Interrupting him would be my only help to getting out of here faster.
I bit my lip and looked up in thought. How could I help him? How could I help him in two freaking weeks? I didn’t really care much for him, but I cared for the reputation that our school would have, and also the fact that he would look bad. I had a soft spot for people for some reason and I knew that helping him would help me to feel better.
And get to sleep faster.
Looking back at him, I noticed the intensity in his eyes, "I’ll tell you what..." He leaned up off the counter, "I have a friend, that owes me a favor. He can help you and train you to get you back to where you used to be before you began your drug intake. It can be on the down-low and he doesn’t have to know anything about you."
"How can you get away with that?" He raised an eyebrow, "what kind of friend do you have?"
I smiled, "Here’s the thing Adam. I don’t ‘fix’ people for money; I do it for the sake of doing it. And the fact that each time I help a said person, they owe me a favor. They are basically my get out of jail free cards, for whenever I need their services."
"And how many times have you cashed in a favor?" He asked, a sly grin appearing on his lips.
"It’s not like that you pervert," he chuckled, "and I’ve never cashed in on any," I shrugged, "until now, that is."
Adam’s mouth almost went slant, "Briana, you’ve helped more people than I can count and you’ve never needed someone to help you?"
I shrugged and thought about it. I never needed to be fixed. It was cliché, but it was easier for me to take care of myself, instead of having other people do it for me. I didn’t need the favors, but they ensured that I was doing this for a reason, and that reason wasn’t just to make me feel better.
"I’m just really good at being responsible," I raised an eyebrow and he rolled his.
"Whatever," he came closer to me, "just do your majestic duty or whatever it is that Briana Wilkens does on her own time."
I nodded, "Will do soldier," I turned to leave, but then stopped. I glanced over my shoulder, "You want this, don’t you Adam? You want to be helped."
He nodded, "More than anything."
I smirked, "Good... Just remember that you said that."