17: A Penny For Your Thoughts

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"And I think that's everything you requested for the meals for the week, Brett," Toby said as the rest of us tried to find places to put everything. We had an ice box, but it could only hold so much stuff, and whatever Brett had in mind required way more ingredients than we had room for.

For me, as long as the food tasted good, he could take up as much space as he wanted, but some people felt that there were better uses for our ice box.

"Jia, Jia, just stop. You just knocked down my chart of citations," Darrell said.

I wasn't sure why we still had that, considering everyone but Darrell and Carter had at least twenty. Logan and I had especially earned some tally marks after accidentally spitting on a bird he and Jia were recording just below us. We couldn't help ourselves, though. It had turned into a game to keep us sane on the island.

And the noise the bird made was priceless. I couldn't wait to see how Jia and Darrell decided to report that fluke in their data.

"Oh fuck, my bad. It'd be a shame if it accidentally," she picked it up off the floor and walked to the front foor, "flew out the door, never to be seen again."

Jia tossed the paper out the door, and it tumbled away along the (finally) dry rocks.

Darrell gasped. "You just destroyed data and littered at the same time! I should have you hanged!"

"Okay, douchebag." Jia laughed.

Darrell put on a pair of untied shoes and chased after his paper, and I turned back to the groceries that still needed to be put away with a small smile. Carter must have slipped away during the brief conflict, since he couldn't stand arguing even more than I hated it.

"You kids are going to be the death of me," Toby muttered under his breath, and I was pretty sure that we were all going to be the deaths of each other as well.

"Dude, seriously?" Logan said, and I looked up at him.

Brett laughed. "What?"

"You can't be serious. This is your big plan?"

"What?" I asked, and I parked myself by Logan's side, reading the label of what he had in his hands. "Mountain oysters?"

They didn't really look like oysters, though, so something didn't add up.

"It's genius, right?" Brett laughed. "Oh my god, I can't wait to see Darrell's face when he finds out what they are, after he's eaten them, of course."

"What—what are they?" I asked, and as soon as the words came out of my mouth, I decided that I really didn't want to know the answer.

"Rea, don't ask. It's better if you don't know," Logan said.

But Brett answered me anyway. "Veal testicles."

I covered my mouth before anything could come out of it.

Perhaps Puke Boy and I were more evolutionarily similar than I had originally thought.

"Yeah, well, there's one minor flaw with your plan, genius. That means the rest of us have to eat them too," Logan said.

"They're really not that bad. If you forget to take the membrane off, which I did the first time I made them, it's pretty chewy, but other than that—"

"I'm going to go see what Carter's up to. He could be dissecting a seal's digestive system, and I would be more okay with that," I said.

"Look at what you did, Brett. You frazzled sweet, innocent Rea," Logan said as I walked away.

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