❝ life's a game but it's not fair ❞

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Life's a game but it's not fair
I break the rules,
So I don't care.
So I keep doin' my own thing,
Walkin' tall against the rain.

"Run This Town" - Jay Z ft. Rihanna & Kanye West

"You know," Jacen said. "I'm really starting to think you hate me."

I rolled my eyes and ignored him.

"That, or you're secretly, desperately, hopelessly in love with me."

I shot him an incredulous look. "I'm supposed to make your sister's boyfriends brother fall in love with me and you thi-"

"It was a joke, Elena," he said, glancing at me from the corner of his eye, so he could still watch the road.

"Has anyone ever told you that you're really not funny?" I asked, turning to stare outside.

"Sure," he replied without missing a beat. "Keira, Vanessa, Skylar, and now you."

"You should really listen to them," I told him, not looking away from the window. As the houses we sped past grew bigger and bigger, I asked myself, for the fifth time during the fifteen minute drive, what the hell I was doing in Jacen Winston's car, on my way to Vanessa Merrick's house, for a party with the Elite?

When I had agreed yesterday, I hadn't actually believed it would happen. But it did. Jacen had shown up at my house at seven with gleaming eyes and a wide smile. Raine and Kaden had been at a doctor's appointment, thankfully, so they hadn't witnessed the disturbance Jacen had caused dragging me into his car. I guess I hadn't helped either with putting up a fight. I had left a note in hopes that Raine and Kaden wouldn't worry, or go into my room. Jacen had made a bit of a messy going through my clothes to grab stuff I needed to bring for the party.

It was all by the orders of Vanessa, he had claimed.

"It's raining," I said, hoping that would somehow get me out of this.

"Vanessa has an indoor pool," Jacen replied. "We're here," he sing-songed a moment later, pulling into a long driveway lined with perfectly but bushes. He parked in front of the elaborate white house a moment later. He got out, then to my slight surprise, came around to my side and opened the door for me as I was grabbing my bag.

"Thanks," I said, stepping out of the car. I glanced around, wondering if I would make a run for it. It was a little more intimidating now that I was actually here.

Jacen looped an arm around my shoulders and pulled me towards the door, almost as if he had heard my thoughts about escaping. He didn't let go of me, not when he pressed the lock button on his car's remote, or even when he typed a long sequence of numbers into a keypad/intercom near the door.

"Hello?" Vanessa's voice came through a moment later.

"Hey Vannie, I brought her," Jacen said.

"Don't call me Vannie," Vanessa replied. "Door's open," she added after a soft series of beeps and clicks.

When we were inside, Jacen still didn't let go, instead changed his hold so he was guiding me by the shoulders from behind. We climbed a set of stairs and went through a couple hallways before he finally stopped at a pale pink door.

And I thought Kaden and Raine's house was big.

The volume of the coming music coming from inside the room became almost painful when Jacen pushed open the door.

Vanessa sat cross-legged on her bed in jean shorts and a bright turquoise bikini top, flipping through a magazine. She glanced up when we came in. "Quiet," she said. Instantly the music lowered. I glanced around. Her room suited her. It was bright, and girly, and pink. Two pale pink nightstands were pushed against the large white bed. Pink fabric draped from the ceiling, and the walls were decorated with posters and fairy lights. A TV, mini-fridge and collection of bean-bags sat in the corner of the room.

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