Chapter Fourteen

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"If you want to call me names, make jokes, doubt my intentions go ahead. But the reality is... I can take it. But for the thousands of kids out there coming to terms with who they are, they shouldn't have to take it." ~ Caitlyn Jenner


"What do you want to do?" Charlie asked me.

"This," I laughed, keeping my eyes closed as I relaxed in my beach chair in the sand.

"This is all you want to do?" He scoffed.

"Yes," I nodded. "This is exactly what I want to do. I want to be tan."

"You're gonna get skin cancer, is what you're gonna do. You lay in the sun all the time," Zach informed me from a few chairs down. "And by the way, now that you two are a couple, you're annoying."

"Well, I'm gonna lay in the sun all I want. I want to be tan," I replied.

"Then why don't you go to tanning beds or something?" Brandon questions.

"Because, tanning beds increase your chance for melanoma by fifty nine percent," I told them as if it was obvious.

"Didn't you go in a tanning bed for prom?" Sadie clarified.

"No, I got a spray tan," I replied. "Why, did I look orange?"

"No, you just looked tan for it being, like, June," She said.

"How do you just know statistics like that?" Justin questioned.

"She's smart, of course she knows random shit like that," Sadie laughed.

"I'm not even that smart, guys," I stopped them.

"Oh, please," Zach rolled his eyes.

"Stop picking on my girlfriend," Charlie interrupted.

"Okay, I'm one hundred and ten percent done with you," Brandon decided, looking at Charlie.

"When are you leaving, Emily?" Justin asked.

"A week from Wednesday," I replied.

"Why Wednesday?" Sadie continued.  "That's such a random day."

"I don't know, it's just the date that me and my mom picked from the beginning of the summer," I replied.

"Do you wish that you could stay later?" Brandon wondered.

"Um," I thought.  "It depends.  I'll miss you guys a lot, and I'll miss my dad.  But I really miss my mom and my friends back home, so I think it'll be good to see them again before everyone leaves for school."

"Wait, you're not going to Brown like next week?" Zach stupidly asked.

"No, I'm going home for two weeks and then going to Rhode Island," I answered.

"Are you coming to Naples for Christmas?" Sadie asked.

"We usually go to North Carolina with my grandparents for a couple of days over Christmas break," I replied. "I think we're only going for, like, three or four days this year, though, so I might try and come down for a day or two."

"What about Thanksgiving? Where are you gonna be for Thanksgiving?" Brandon added.

"Probably my mom's, if I even come home. We don't really have a lot of money laying around, and I only have four days off from school, and two of those days would be spent traveling, so I don't really know if it's worth it," I explained.

"So you're going home for Christmas and that's it?" Justin asked.

"Probably spring break too," I shrugged.

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