Chapter 8

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You sat down at the spacious, wooden table in the living room. You liked their house even though it was designed the exact opposite way from yours. It was cozy, a little chaotic, while yours was modern, the colours of everything matching so it didn't look weird. There were 4 seats on each side of the table,
Mr. and Mrs. Heffley sitting at one side with Greg and Manny, mom, dad, Rodrick and you sitting on the other one. Great how you've got to be sitting right next to him, while you wanted to keep distance, especially after what just happened.

As the adults picked up their conversations about boring stuff like the reason you've moved, their work, lifestyles etc., everyone began putting food on their plates. It looked delicious, everything was self-made and still warm. Barbecue, chicken fried stake, chilli, tacos and much more decorating the table. But as you scanned the buffet, you quickly realized that there wasn't really something you could eat since they were mainly meat dishes, the only thing edible being the greek salad. Now you knew there was no way this could actually still your hunger, but it wasn't like you had another chance anyway, knowing you still had to eat something out of pure politeness.

So, you've waited until everyone put some greek salad on their plates then putting the rest on yours, adding some mashed potatoes you didn't notice at first, a solid portion now laying right in front if you.

It's not the first time this has happened to you but you didn't blame anyone. You don't usually expect someone to be vegetarian, so you serve meat. It's like a sybol for wealth, a high status and all that boujee bullshit.

Dinner in general went well, everyone ate peacefully, your parents so invested into getting to to know the Heffely's that they barely spared you one look, forgetting you and the other kids were even present, Manny and Greg leaving the table as soon as they finished their plates, hiding in their rooms. And as you were halfway through with your salad and mashed potatoes, happy that no one seemed to notice what you were eating, you suddenly felt someone's breath tingling your neck.

You instinctively looked up just to see Rodrick staring down at you confused, looking back and forth your plate, after a moment that seemed like forever turning his gaze up to you, his hazel eyes meeting yours, nervousness creeping up inside of you once again. "Why the fuck are you starving yourself?" he whispered eventually, turning back to his own plate to not raise any suspicion. Shit, you thought knowing you'd have to explain yourself another time.

"Im not-" you started quietly, getting interrupted by the loud laughter of both   dads. "I'm not starving myself" you finished your sentence, stuffing a fork full of salad into your mouth as he looked at you amused. "In fact if I would, I wouldn't be eating at all, especially not potatoes, do you have any idea how many calories these bitches contain?" you added as he let out a quiet huff, ironically stuffing a whole fork of mashed potatoes into his mouth, certainly not worrying about gaining some weight.

"I thought potatoes were great to add to your diet" he said chewing as you smiled. "Well" you answered looking back up at him, "you're not wrong actually" you continued, a proud look covering his face. "See, potatoes might be low in fat but still, these aren't empty calories. A single potato has got like about 150 calories, which is okay. But you know, they've got great vitamins and nutrients so, I guess it's not wrong to add them to your diet plan" you added as he laughed quietly.

"Freak" he whispered finishing the food at his plate as you rolled your eyes, "shut it" being the words leaving your mouth before you even properly thought about them.

"Now you know exactly what I mean" he answered getting all serious again as you sighed heavily, right when you thought he forgot. "A little Greek salad and mashed potatoes certainly aren't enough" he whispered, his tone sharpening a little, probably without him even noticing.

"It really is, don't worry about it" you answered now finishing the rest off your plate taking a sip of your orange juice as he turned around to face you, looking like he's just got the greatest idea ever.

"Okay, so since you are obviously too shy to put more food on your plate here's what were going to do" he spoke making small gestures with his hands clearly invested in his plan. "On three were switching our plates. Then I'll put on some food on your plate, but it will look like I put it on my plate and then we will-" he whispered getting interrupted by you. "Stop, we're not doing that" you said putting down your glass receiving an annoyed look.

"Why the fuck not?" he asked a little too loud for your taste but luckily no one seemed to notice."Because I'm a fucking vegetarian, dumbass" you whispered through gritted teeth, realizing that he wouldn't just let it be, annoyed by his nosiness, though you knew he had good intentions. "I don't eat meat" you explained, his face looking beyond surprised.

"And you just decided you wouldn't tell anyone and starve till death?" he asked after an awkward moment of silence passed as you rose your eyebrows confused, wondering whether he was being serious or not.

"Now you are being so overdramatic, I won't starve because I have eaten a salad and mashed potatoes for dinner" you stated after you realized that he wasn't joking.

After that being said Rodrick and you haven't spoken to each other anymore, everyone eventually finishing their meals. You listened to their conversations, answering Mrs. Heffley's questions occasionally and that's basically how hours went by, explicitly six damn hours of them talking, not getting tired or bored at all. You've expected Rodrick to leave after some time, seeing it was a torture for him as well, considering he had a room he could leave to, but to your suprise he didn't. It's like he stuck with you, not wanting to leave you alone even if you weren't talking. And honestly it was nice, you appreciated it. Knowing that you weren't the only one going through this absolute boredom, somehow made it easier to stand. After you let some more time pass, realizing your parents wouldn't leave as fast as you've expected them to, considering they had surprisingly quite a lot in common with the Heffley's and got along pretty well, you finally rose your voice, interrupting their conversation.

"I'll be heading home" you said smiling. It was sunday and already 10pm., tomorrow being your first day at school and you still had to get ready. "I have to get ready for school tomorrow" you added fiddling with the rings on your left hand again, realizing it was something you always did when you were nervous. "It was really nice to meet you though and thank you so much for dinner, it was delicious" you added attempting to get up but being stopped by Rodrick speaking up.

"Yeah" he said calmly, "you can judge it well, I mean you've eaten so much of it after all" he murmured ironically as you felt your face getting hot immediately, your parents suddenly remembering that you were vegetarian, giving you an apologetic look.

"Uhm" you stuttered letting out a shaky breath, "of course I did" you lied quickly facing Mrs. Heffley's confused look. "It was the best meal I had in a while" you added trying to save yourself as best as you could. "No offense, mom" you said turning to her as she looked at you, probably even more nervous than you were by now. Now these were the things they should have prepared you for and not how to say hello in seven different ways. "Mrs. Heffley you're a great cook" you added trying to speak as calm as
possible, hiding your hands behind your back since they were clearly shaking right now, Susan's face lightening up immediately, apparently buying your explanation.

"Thank you my dear, have a lovely night" she answered quickly before picking up her conversation with your mom again who shot you a relieved look, your dad quickly turning to Frank to distract him as well after you said goodbye to everyone. Finally rising up from your seat, you stomped your foot on Rodrick's firmly as he suppressed a cry.

Slowly bending down, just for your mouth to be at the same height as his ear, you whispered "goodnight asshole", before turning around and leaving the house behind.

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