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Pen Your Pride

Chapter Eighteen

      “Johnny!” I whined, my arms aching from the twelve-ton bags I was carrying.

      “Don’t call me that!” he groaned a few paces in front of me.

      “Why am I carrying all the shopping bags?” I asked.

      “Because you refused to go to the gym with me this morning,” he snorted, taking out his phone, and beginning to text (probably Kara).


      “So, this is your daily work out.”

      “I don’t need a daily work out…” I said, offended that he would think I did.

      “It’s okay Elle, I think you’re body’s perfect,” Nick chimed in.

      “Oh? Well it’s okay Nick, I think you’re possibly the worst friend in the world!” I said.

      “Why?” he asked.

      “Firstly, you’re making me carry all the bags, secondly you’re walking five steps ahead of me, and thirdly you just indirectly made an advance on me,” I explained, adjusting the handles of the bags in my hands so they were easier to carry.

      Nick stopped walking, and turned around. He grabbed every single bag that I was carrying, and put them in his hands. “Better?” he asked.

      “I could’ve carried a few,” I mumbled, feeling as though he had partially condescended me based my gender and physical ability… or maybe it was the fact that I was complaining. I don’t know.

      “Right… regarding the steps- you told me to socialize with John more, so that’s what I’m doing,” he explained, resuming to walk down the busy sidewalk.

      “No you’re-” John began to object, not looking up from his phone.

      “And as for ‘indirectly making an advance on you’, it was pretty damn direct if you ask me babe,” he said. Though he was walking in front of and I couldn’t see his facial expression, I was more than sure a smug smirk occupied his lips.

      “Jerk,” I muttered.

      “No, I’m Nick, ‘Jerk’ is a popular dance move in pop culture today,” Nick said, as John snorted, trying to cover up a laugh.

      “Why am I even out with you two losers?” I questioned.

      “Because you love us,” John said, still texting.

      “I love you Johnny. The other one- not so much,” I said, taking in the sight around me.

      This morning, John and Nick had decided that we were going to go shopping. I swear they’re not gay! Sometimes I do seriously question their sexual orientation, but then I remember that John’s dating Kara, and that Nick’s… not gay. Anyways, they said that there was this street in Boston with a bunch of stores on it, and that we were going. I don’t even want to address the issue of how they found out about the street or their motive behind wanting to go.

      So, we’re here, on a street, with a bunch of other people, popping into various retailors, and spending our parents’ money. We were in the American Apparel for a good forty-five minutes before Nick dragged John and I out, saying that the store was scaring him. I was hauled into J. Crew for a few minutes, before I ran out screaming, not being able to stand the preppy explosion any longer. We went into Victoria’s Secret for about five minutes, before I made the mutual decision with myself that the boys were having… too much fun.

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