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Shana's daddy carried me back to our trailer and her mama brought me a steaming bowl of chili to eat for dinner

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Shana's daddy carried me back to our trailer and her mama brought me a steaming bowl of chili to eat for dinner.

It never did end up raining that night. Shortly after dusk, the storm clouds dissipated quickly, giving way to silver moonlight and clear skies.

Sprawled on the double bed that I shared with my mom, I had my SAT prep book spread across my lap. I'd done unexpectedly well the first time, but wanted to see if I could push a little harder to improve my scores and any chances at scholarship money.

I was dozing off when someone called my name from outside the window. It had to be Peyton, but I leaned over and peeked through the blinds anyway. I smiled and waved at him.

"Hang on, let me get to door," I said, grunting as I tried to roll off the bed.

"It's open," he said. "Just stay there, I'm coming in. I didn't want to scare you to death by walking in without warning." He disappeared from view, so I quickly pulled the worn white sheet over my legs.

Seconds later, he ducked into the trailer, making the space suddenly seem a lot smaller. After all, at the end of the day, the trailer was only twelve feet across by sixty feet long.

I regularly picked up after my mom, but there was only so much I could do in the limited space and clutter still largely dominated it.

Peyton stepped around a half-packed rolling suitcase and made his way down the short hallway until he stood in the doorway to the tiny bedroom. "You really should lock the door."

"I know. I meant to. I forgot."

He looked at my face, then at my legs. "Why didn't you tell me you hurt yourself?"

"How do you even know about that?" I asked, keeping my tone light. "It barely just happened."

"I overheard Lottie on the phone, so I got it out of her."

I wondered what else he'd heard. More than a few people had seen Jake carrying me to his car, and if that wasn't juicy gossip, I didn't know what was.

"I'm okay," I said. "It's just a little sprain."

Peyton reached into his pocket, pulled out an iphone, and held it out to me.

"What's this?" I asked.

"A phone. For you."

I took it and turned it around in my palm. It was brand new.

"I've already set everything up so it's good to go," he said.

I was probably the only teenager on earth who didn't have a cell phone. I used to have one of those prepaid cheapies, but didn't replace it when it got lost. Truth be told, I didn't have friends to text or call. The only person I ever called was Peyton when he was at school, and I just borrowed my mom's or Shana's phone for that.

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