Chapter 3 First Down

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Talon turned off the water and stepped out of the shower stall. His body protested as he dried himself, every muscle screaming for relief. Today's practice had been brutal. The team had run drill after drill till sweat blinded their eyes. Or maybe it had been tears...not that he'd ever admit it. Wrapping the towel around his waist, he grabbed his stuff and headed back to the room but he noticed several things. One, everyone had their phones out and two, they were all staring at him like he'd just grown another head.

"What's going on?" he asked, walking up to his friends. Kevin shook his head, too amused to answer so Talon turned to Aaron who had a ridiculous grin on his face. A couple of the second string players snickered as they passed by, elbowing each other when they caught sight of him. Paranoid, Talon patted his face thinking he'd missed a spot while shaving. "What's so funny?"

"—" Aaron snorted, then burst out laughing, which set Kevin off. The two idiots wouldn't stop so he barged into Finn and Mitch's room wanting answers.

"Ever heard of knocking?" Finn asked. He was sitting on a bed with his back leaning against a brick wall, a bottle of Gatorade in one hand and a candy bar in another. He chugged the last bit of sports drink and tossed it in the trashcan. Well, it would have gone in the trashcan if it hadn't been overflowing.

"Ever heard of cleaning?" Talon shot back. He couldn't stand a messy room. That was the one area in his life he needed to keep organized.

"Don't look at me. That's Mitch's mess."

Talon eyed the empty pizza box and bags of Cheetos. "I thought you said you didn't have any junk food."

Finn shrugged. "We lied." He saw Talon's expression and sighed. "Oh, don't act all butt hurt. You never share your Peep stash with us."

"That's different."

Finn raised an eyebrow. "Is it?"

"You don't even like Peeps! You say they taste like cardboard, which for the record they don't."

"They do," Finn countered.

"Well, you're wrong," Talon told him.

"It's my opinion. I can't be wrong."

"That's up for debate. Obviously something's off," he tapped his temple, "up here. Maybe you should have it checked out."

"You're not having me committed to the psych ward again."

"It was just a suggestion."

"Not when you call up the nearest hospital and ask to be directed to a specialist," Finn spat. He bit into the candy bar with a growl.

"Is this what I get for being a concerned friend? Distrust and mocking?"

Finn picked up a pillow and shucked it at him. "You're an asshole."

Talon grabbed onto the ends and swung it around hitting Finn in the face.

"Having a pillow fight, girls?" Mitch stood in the doorway with Kevin and Aaron behind him. All three wore matching expressions that made the back of Talon's neck prickle.

Finn saw it too and turned wary. "Why are you guys looking like that?"

"Check your phone," Mitch told him.

Finn leaned down and grabbed his phone from the duffle on the floor. His eyebrows lifted as he looked at the screen, then he cut a sharp look to Talon, his mouth gaping.

Pissed, Talon barked, "What?"

A grin started to form as Finn glanced at Mitch. "No shit?"

"No shit."

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