12 | Mea Culpa

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More often than not, I considered the school's rumor mill to be high on my list of enemies

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More often than not, I considered the school's rumor mill to be high on my list of enemies. I had encountered more than my fair share of gossip in the three days I'd been back at Georgetown Trinity, but from the looks of it, the circulating whispers weren't going to stop any time soon.

Maybe it wouldn't have been so bad if I was used to living a life that revolved around gossip, but for the most part, I had gone unnoticed during my time in California. From middle school up until the end of my sophomore year, no one outside my core group of friends even knew who I was. It wasn't until I started dating resident bad-boy Zak Huntington that people began to notice me. After that, it only took hours for the scandals to begin.

I should have known there was no way to avoid it -- I was dating the most sought after boy at our school after all -- but hadn't known just how vicious the world of rumors could be. Suddenly, people I didn't even know were talking behind my back, accusing me of sleeping with the entire lacrosse team or claiming that I was plotting to dethrone the school's queen bee. Zak had taught me to simply ignore them, and while some of the accusations stung, I took his words to heart and tried my best to pay them no mind.

Unfortunately for me, one of the harsher rumors that had been circulating turned out to be true. For a while I had brushed it off as one big malicious joke, but when I walked in on my boyfriend and my supposed best friend in a very compromising position, I realized that sometimes gossip wasn't just gossip.

Today, however, the gossip fiends at Georgetown Trinity had picked a new victim, and I didn't mind listening.

"Oh my God, have you seen Sebastian this morning?"

"It looks like he got hit by a truck! What happened to him?"

"I'm not sure, but Jason heard from Cara who found out from Samantha that Louis was told by Max that Marcus said that Sebastian was pushed down a flight of stairs by the half-brother of the girl he hooked up with last night."

"Well I heard that he got into a fight with some politician after he found out that the guy was having an affair with Seb's mother."

"Psh, you guys are both wrong! The real story is that he and Michael got into a huge argument over Blair and it ended up coming to blows. Apparently Michael's been in love with her since first grade!"

"Are you kidding? Everyone knows he was out playing soccer yesterday and some guy on the other team tried to kill him because Seb's sleeping with his girlfriend. The other guy ended up in the ICU when Sebastian was finished with him."

"No way! I thought he had – crap here he comes!"

Like everyone else in the vicinity, I couldn't help but glance up when Sebastian breezed by. A few girls sucked in breaths when he passed, either because of the slash across his cheek or because he still managed to look damn good with such a gruesome injury. As much as I hated to admit it, the latter was absolutely true.

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