Friends and Lies

Friends and Lies

by R.E. Whaley

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781786517654
Publisher: Totally Entwined Group Ltd
Publication date: 07/26/2016
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 104
File size: 3 MB

About the Author

In addition to writing fiction, R.E. Whaley is also a published poet and an experienced activist.

Read an Excerpt

Copyright © R.E. Whaley 2016. All Rights Reserved, Totally Entwined Group Limited, T/A Finch Books.

My friend Cameron is supposed to have a licensed driver accompanying her at all times while she’s driving, and I don’t have my license. We drive into town in her mom’s black convertible all alone.

The top is down and the wind makes tangles in my hair. I sit glued, clutching the sides of the passenger seat so hard my fingers ache as she slams down on the accelerator and swerves halfway into the other lane. Cameron ignores stop signs when she feels like it and speed limits altogether.

I don’t know it now, but Cameron’s recklessness will cause my life and the lives of several others to swerve treacherously off course.

When a phone Cameron’s mom has left behind in the car rings, she answers it. “Hello? Yes, this is Mrs. Avery. Ava, how are you? I’m doing very well, thank you. Yes, the appointment’s still set for tomorrow afternoon. Great. I’ll see you then.”

Cameron hangs up, and I ask her, “Should you be doing that?”

“What?”

“Pretending to be your mom?”

Cameron shrugs. “She’ll never find out. Anyway I helped her. I confirmed the appointment with the interior decorator for her.”

We zip into Suttonville’s Main Street at fifty mph and I point out a sign that reads, Speed Limit 30. Cameron gives it the middle finger.

“What if we get stopped by a cop?” I ask.

“I’ll just show him some boob—or maybe slip him some money.”

I can’t tell whether she’s serious. “You’re crazy.” I laugh.

The car comes to a screeching halt. “What did you say?” she asks.

“I was just joking.”

Behind us, people beep their horns. Cameron leans across my lap and opens the passenger side door. “Get out.”

“What?”

“You heard me, Kat. Get out.” The tone of her voice isn’t loud. It’s calm, low.

“Look, I’m sorry, all right? Can we just get out of here?”

She turns away from me, flicks on the air conditioning. The cold air shoots out. She reaches across my lap and shuts the door. Stepping on the gas, she rips around the corner, backing into a parking space. Across the street, Café is written on the coffee bar’s wide awning in flirty pink letters.

We get out of the car and Cameron slaps the side of a parking meter. “Got any quarters?” She’s less vibrant than usual, probably figures I’m mad at her because of the stunt she’s just pulled.

I reach into the pocket of my hoodie and remove my wallet.

“You know, I’m really glad you decided to wear a skirt. You look beautiful, Kat, darling.”

It’s her way of apologizing. I manage a smile. “Thanks.” I hand her a quarter.

She places the quarter in the slot, turns the small handle. “Ready to go?”

“Shouldn’t you put the top up?”

Cameron peers at the sky. “It’ll never rain on a beautiful day like this.” She grabs hold of my hand. Her palm’s moist like she’s as nervous as I am. We cross the street in silence.

Inside the café, Dylan Hartley’s seated between two guys around our age at a corner table. The place is swarming with people from Suttonville Prep, and there are college kids here, too, home for summer break, talking excitedly about keg parties and losses of virginity. Cameron doesn’t let go of my hand until we sit down.

Dylan looks her over with a big grin on his tan face and just nods at me. He introduces us to his friends, Thomas and Ross. Thomas is a junior at our high school, a tall jock like Dylan. He tosses back his blond hair and shifts his lanky frame.

“Awesome shoes,” I say, glancing down at his bright orange sneakers.

Thomas moves his mouth like he’s going to talk, but then Dylan butts in. “Yeah, I’ve been giving him grief about those for months. I wouldn’t be caught in the morgue with those things.”

Cameron leans over and playfully slaps Dylan on the shoulder. “You’re such a jerk.”

Dylan grabs her wrist. “I’m not letting you go without a kiss.”

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