Chapter 13 - Intentions

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When I woke the following day, I was in an unusually happy mood, considering I had two pieces of homework to hand in: one of which I had rushed the previous night after my conversation with Xander.

I guessed that this new-found invigoration for the day came from feeling a new sense of respect for my brother, Xander. That withstanding his attitude and short temper, if Xander (who had only ever been bitter to me) could manage a degree of understanding compassion, then maybe there was hope for our relationship after all.

I met Cole at breakfast, who confidently assured me that I would be safer in the car him, as he had passed his driver's test two days before his twin. The last half of his declaration was said with that familiar smirk and I found myself reassured that, despite yesterday's confrontation, all was forgiven and forgotten as they were more than happy to continue joking around again.

Immediately as we arrived on the school grounds, I was aware that we were drawing a large number of student's stares again. Somehow I didn't think I would ever get used to that.

"Consequences of having famous brothers, sis," Cole whispered teasingly in my ear, playing off my evident discomfort.

I met with Jess after the second period by my locker, noting how she ran up to me with a huge beaming smile.

"Hey, Maddie, you'll never believe what happened last night!" Jess exclaimed happily, piquing my curiosity.

"Our maths teacher got kidnapped by aliens so, unfortunately, can't teach today?" I questioned jokingly.

I don't think I did a great job at concealing the fact I was praying for this to become a reality. I learnt that morning from Toby that I did the completely wrong maths homework, so to say I wasn't looking forward to that period was an understatement.

"Not quite," Jess laughed. "Why? Did you forget your homework?"

I gave a nervous smile, "I may or may not have done the homework using the wrong textbook?"

"Maddie, Mr Henderson's gonna kill you," she whined, not doing much to soothe my nerves.

"I know, it was a long night," I sighed. I was glad when she didn't question it further. 

"It's fine, you can just copy mine?" she offered.

How did I get so lucky to have Jess as a friend?

"Thanks, but really you don't have too," I said, immediately feeling guilty. 

I didn't want it to look like I just wanted to become friends with her because she was a genius, which she was, but that was beside the point. Jess had only been welcoming, friendly and kind since I met her. I still couldn't believe my luck. I didn't want Jess to believe that I was taking advantage of that. Then again, I could just be overthinking it.

"It's really not a problem, I'll give it to you during Lunch," she smiled.

"What do you mean lunch?" I furrowed my eyebrows in confusion, we had a different lunch. "As far as I'm aware, I'm still imprisoned on my brother's table," I groaned in complaint, still a little irritated with the whole situation.

Jess's face lit up with excitement, "Oh yeah, that's what I was going to tell you. My parents got a call from the principal last night, they've moved my classes around and now my lunch is the same time as yours. The same thing happened to Joe as well. Now all four of us can have lunch together," she chattered enthusiastically.

I couldn't help but reflect my friend's enthusiasm with a smile of my own that reached my eyes, "That's amazing news!" Now finally my brother's will be off my back with a girl at the table.

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