Chapter 31.2: Jacky

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It hadn't taken much convincing

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It hadn't taken much convincing. Ryan told me Monica's having a party 2nite, Jacky had texted Cody. Want another black eye?

Nina will be there?

I'm sure

And Welch?

Probably

Cody had shown up on Jacky's doorstep five minutes later.

"Have you talked to Nina after last weekend?" Jacky asked him. The black eye had faded to a dull purple.

"We've been texting." Cody had a goofy smile on his face. "Mostly she talks about what a jerk Matt is."

"So, um, you haven't told her how you feel?"

"Dude, I kissed her. Actions speak louder than words, my friend."

"You should have asked to her go out tonight. Then you wouldn't have to go to a party where Matt would be."

"Uh, no. You think I should?"

Jacky glanced at the time on his phone. "She's probably already at Monica's."

"Then let's go."

"Do you really think this is a good idea?" Jacky asked.

"No." Cody laughed. "But come on. My life foundation is made of bad ideas."

They walked over to Monica's. Cars lined the street and all the lights were on at the Johnstons, illuminating groups of people smoking out on the porch. Jacky shivered in his leather jacket. He hung back behind Cody as they approached the front door.

What if Ryan didn't want him there, at the party? Who was Jacky going to talk to when Cody found Nina, especially if Ryan didn't want to talk to him?

He felt himself start to warm with a sudden anger.

At the very least, he was Ryan's friend. Ryan could treat him like a friend, if nothing more.

"What the fuck are you doing here?" Jacky heard as soon as he and Cody set foot inside.

Lance glowered at Cody.

"Uh," said Cody. He took a step back and bumped into Jacky.

"Didn't you cause enough trouble last time?" Alex added.

"What, are you Welch's bodyguards?" Jacky said. "We have as much right to be here as you guys." Why did he say that?

"Yeah, okay." Alex's sarcasm laid down the law. He poked a finger into Cody's chest. "You fuck around with someone else's girlfriend, that makes you an asshole. That fight last weekend put two holes in the wall of my living room, and I had to pay to get those fixed. I could have made you pay for it, but I'm a nice guy. I'm not so sure Monica's dad would let you get away with that."

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