Chapter sixteen

“What’s happened?” Charlie asked as Harper walked in to the on campus pizzeria. He gently hugged her and gave her a light kiss on her forehead.

Harper shook her head, “Nothing,” she replied, she hadn’t realised that her stress at Will was that visible.

Charlie hummed and decided not to push it any further. He pulled Harper’s chair out for her like a real gentleman before taking his seat on the other side of the table. The restaurant was small and homely; it didn’t look or feel like it belonged with the rest of the school’s extravagance. Harper felt all the tension begin to lift from her body. She breathed in the delicious smell of fresh pizza and closed her eyes, when she reopened them all thoughts of Will were gone from her mind.

“You’ve been talking to Will again,” Charlie said as he took a sip from his glass of water, his tone was conversational but there was a hint of aggression behind it.

“Yes,” Harper sighed, “but I didn’t come here to talk about Will. I came here to spend time with you. Besides this whole drama between you is just tiring, can’t you just work it out?” Harper asked.

Charlie shook his head but smiled, “I don’t think so, but if you don’t want to talk about him then we won’t. I just don’t like the thought of him stressing you out all the time.”

Harper smiled, “I’m not even that stressed, so let’s just eat pizza,” she replied.

Charlie nodded and all conversation about Will was dropped.

It was gone eleven o’clock by the time they had finished their meal and Harper was full to her neck. The food was gorgeous, but she hardly expected anything less. Charlie got the bill even after Harper’s protests that she could pay her fair share.

They stepped out in the cool air, there were still several students milling about the courtyard under the soft amber lighting that the Victorian style street lights provided. Charlie caught sight of some of his friends and asked if Harper minded if they went over to say hi. Harper said she didn’t, despite the fact that both Jessica and Katie were included in the group.

Much to Harper’s surprise she was greeted in a friendly manner by the two girls. Harper was immediately suspicious even though they sounded legitimate in their kindness.

“Hey,” Harper replied somewhat nervously, expecting them to suddenly turn cold.

“So Harper, me and Katie were wondering if you’d thought about filling in for our team,” Katie said, “And I know that you think we’re bitches, but honestly we’re really quite nice when you get to know us.”

“Plus you don’t have to like us to cheer,” Jessica added.

Harper rolled her eyes, not this again, she thought to herself.

“Oh come on please, we’re begging you here!” Katie raised her voice slightly. She didn’t look particularly begging to Harper but she felt herself becoming willing to help them out.

“When’s practise?” Harper asked.

“Every night five till eight, you can get out of detention too,” Katie replied as if Harper had said yes.

Harper sighed, not having to go to detention sounded pretty nice even if it would mean missing modelling for Lois afterwards. But Harper didn’t think she’d mind, after all they could still make clothes without using Harper as a mannequin.

“You’ll get to see more of Charlie,” Katie interrupted Harper’s train of thought; “We practise outside on the fields at the same time as the football team.”

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