Thirteen: Jealousy †

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"What do you want?" I breathed, sighing in exasperation.

Ruby was smug, a jubilant smirk plastered on her self-righteous and haughty face. She ran a perfectly-manicured hand with nonsensically long and painted nails through her wavy fringe, fusing it with her tightly-styled ringlets.

"I will tell Lea that Jason me up with you and she won't like it." The way her voice possessed authority only added to the desire she yearned for to conquer and have power over anyone else. She wanted to be the best and that was evident with her faultlessly applied makeup, with the exception of some mascara in the corner of her eye. An amateur mistake, I mused.

"Oh, don't be a-" I rolled my eyes, beginning to be exceptionally vulgar but before I could, Ruby interjected.

"Don't be rude," said Ruby with a minor case of animosity.

I shook my head and stood up. The pictures were already in the envelope Jason gave them to me in and they were stuffed in my bag. I slung the bag over my shoulder, already beginning to walk off allowing some distance to be fashioned between Ruby and I considering she couldn't run very promptly in heeled-boots and I was power-walking in flat boots.

"Oi, Tiegan!" Ruby hollered.

Not wanting to make much of a scene – and in addition, to that, blameless spectators had already turned around to witness the dispute between us – I turned around and stared tediously at Ruby. She had popped her hip, arms crossed over her chest. Flustered and aggravated – like myself – Ruby bellowed, "Will I have to tell Lea or will you stop talking and seeing Jason?"

"Fine," I yelled back. "Damn bitch," I mumbled.

I turned around and began to storm back to the college. I fortuitously kept bumping into people, knocking them sideways and causing them to stagger sideways. I apologised incessantly to them, causing a blush to surge up to my cheeks and neck. Ultimately, when I did get back to the college, I went straight to my room, inserting the key card into the lock mechanism before retracting it. The green light flashed, signalling the door was now unlocked and I could enter.

Johanna greeted me as soon as I stepped inside, lying on her bed with a science book in her lap. She had it opened to the biology section so it was the digestive system. I plonked down on my bed and placed my bag on the floor next to me, sighing in relief that I was back.

"So where have you been this morning?" Johanna asked.

"Just in the town," I replied, shrugging indifferently.

Johanna nodded. Her eyes didn't even divert to me while she was asking me. She never even replied, either. I was about to unpack everything in my bag when I abruptly remembered about the pictures. I quickly stuffed the envelope into the cupboard under the little table without Johanna noticing. I abandoned my bag in front of the closed cupboard door now before pulling out The Art of Psychology to read the next chapter.

By the time it was time for dinner, I was enormously peckish and I was just itching to get downstairs. Accompanied by Johanna, I managed to find Verity at a table on her own while simultaneously, Johanna found her science friends so we went our separate ways. I got my food from the top of the food court and sat down opposite Verity, nearly tripping but I managed to compose myself by falling gracelessly into the chair. Thankfully, the tray was only centimetres off the table so nothing toppled over the edge.

"Hey," I spoke, flushed.

"Oh, hi," Verity responded, looking up suddenly. "What's up?"

"I ran into Ruby in town," I informed, shuffling on the royal blue wooden seat which didn't even match with the white-marbled style table, even though the table was actually plastic, too.

Verity groaned slightly, mumbling inarticulately under her breath. "What did she want?" was the only thing she comprehensibly said.

I shook my head. "She was just talking about long-distance training on Tuesday evening."

With the rest of dinner, we managed to eat while keeping up the same amount of chatter with the occasional laugh. When we finished, we simply leaned back in our seats as best as we could and just witnessed other people walking in and stumbling out. Then I saw Jason and Lea enter.

Jason's eyes never landed on me and instead, he kept his attention wholly on Lea. I felt some sort of jealousy contort within the pit of my stomach. He even carried both of their trays, keeping his side brushing against Lea's and placing the trays on the table they sat at in the corner in prior to pulling out Lea's chair and pushing her in. I had to turn around at that point but regrettably, Verity observed me studying Jason and Lea attentively.

"Did either of them do something to you?"

"No," I replied, shaking my head. "Jason even took to calling me British girl," I admitted.

"So Jason's good to you?"

I nodded.

Then it finally clicked. "Are you envious of Lea?"

I turned back around to Jason and Lea. Jason had fries and a burger while Lea had a small salad, a chicken breast and several potatoes. Jason had several fries in his greasy and crumb-covered fingers, aiming them at Lea's mouth which was the target. He was trying to get her to eat them but she was defiant and unwilling; she turned her head, a stubborn smile on her face when Jason leaned forwards and began whispering seductively in her ear. She turned around, a sincere smile now and opened her mouth, permitting Jason to stuff the fries so unappealingly. They grinned contently at one another.

I wasn't sure if I was desirous of Lea but she undoubtedly had a lot of good things: she was creative, stunning and she had loyal friends – even if they were a little crazy. But to top it all off, she even had Jason and that was an additional benefit – a bonus and with just Jason, even then anyone's life would be complete.

Lea was certainly beautiful. Between the days of somewhat heavily applied makeup (but a little lighter than Ruby) and natural, light makeup, Lea dressed fairly normally with the sad influence from Ruby, she was slowly altering and progressing with her wardrobe to be more like a clone of Ruby. She had blonde hair, thick and straight, down to her elbows with only the tips curling in. She had a few lighter and darker highlights in her hair but that was enough. Her eyes were a light honey colour and she had a subtle mole under her right eye. She had minimal blemishes, just a couple of old acne scars cloaked by makeup that you can only detect close-up and her lips were a natural pink colour. She had a turquoise bow in her hair, separating her main hair from her short side fringe that swept across her forehead which she'd had cut recently.

That reminded me: I need to get my haircut soon.

I turned back around to Verity, currently alert of her scrutinising gaze. She had her elbows on the table, the ends of her stripy sleeves of her top just under her elbows. Her head was resting in her hands and she sighed.

"You are, aren't you?"

"I don't know," I confessed, shuffling gawkily in my seat. These chairs really did make your back ache. "It's weird."

Verity nodded. "Guys cause way too much stress."

"Don't I know it," I breathed quietly.

Turning around once more, Jason and Lea had finished eating with the exception of a few fries on Jason's plate. Unpredictably, Lea scooped up the remaining fries on Jason's plate so now it was clear and empty before plopping them into her mouth, one at her time. She swallowed all of them in one go and smiled sheepishly, her lips closed. Jason gazed at her in shock before smiling and pulling her in for a quick kiss on the lips.

I bowed my head and faced Verity again. "Sometimes I wonder why I came here instead of staying in England."

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Author's Note:

Awh, Tiegan :( How did you guys find this chapter? Let me know what you thought of it in the comments please. I love hearing your feedback and I reply to everyone!

Thank you :) x

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