Chapter 4: Your Audacious Bawdiness Undoubtedly Scarred Me For Life

I blinked. Twice. Thrice.

When I was finally convinced that my eyes were actually telling me the truth, I snapped back to reality and turned to face Gwen who still had the same awe-struck expression plastered on her face. By the looks of it, I can clearly tell that she still hasn't recover from her daze.

I can't believe that we were talking about Nicholas all along. It hadn't even occured to me that he was also attending Cross High. I should've known the moment Gwen mentioned his last name. I guess I was too preoccupied with my own deranged thoughts that I haven't realized how his name seemed to arouse a response from me.

But what puzzled me more was the fact that Gwen has been referring to him as Chase all this time. According to my memory, that was not how Mrs. Hayden addressed her son. He was Nicholas when I met him.

It just doesn't make sense.

To clear my confusion out, I nudged Gwen by the arm, hoping to snap her out of her woolgathering. Seeing no positive response, I shook her shoulders lightly which thankfully seemed to shake her a bit.

"U-uh what?", she asked.

"Uh, are you sure that 'Chase' is his name?" I asked her back, just to make sure.

Bemusement flashed across her face as she shot me a questioning look. "What do you mean? Of course I'm sure about that. After all, we've been attending the same school since middle school."

"Oh," I mumbled, trying to take in what she said.

"Why? Do you happen to know him?", she asked, curious.

"Yeah, I guess," I said. "Well, not really. It just so happened that our parents know each other and I kind of met him before--"

"Oh my freaking bananas! You mean, your families are close?" Gwen cut me off before I could fully finish what I was about to say. She now looked eagerly excited as she waited for my answer.

"Uh, it's not like that actually. You see, my mom kind of works for his parents and they sort of invited us over for dinner in their house, some  welcoming occasion since we just moved in and all that stuff," I blabbered and gave her a small shrug.

Gwen's eyes were now twinkling in awe as she processed my words. "Gosh, that is so cool. You got to meet Chase Hayden's parents? They're like, one of the town's richest."

I nodded. "Well yeah. They were the ones who set the dinner, of course I got to meet them," I stated matter-of-factly.

"Oh alright. So, what do you mean earlier when you asked about his name?"

"Ah, that. It just confused me why you were calling him Chase--"

"Because that's his name," she cut me off.

I shrugged. "Yeah I know, I mean, it's just that I thought his name was Nicholas," I countered. "Well, at least that's how his Mom calls him."

"Nicholas Chase Hayden is his real name," she clarified.

"Oh," I murmured understandingly. "I didn't know."

My eyes shifted to Nicholas/Chase's direction once again. He was seated in what seemed to be the table for the people who ruled the social food chain. Sitting with him were those cute guys who entered ahead of him and some girls from the cheerleading squad.

Cliché, much?

I sort of understand why he chose to be called "Chase" instead of "Nicholas". The former quite fitted his personality while the latter sounded too, I don't know, honor-student-ish?

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