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Day Twelve: Bad Boy

“Get out of my room Lyssa.”

“No, Lea, you have to listen to me!”

“No I do not.” Lyssa tried to shove her sister out the door. “I have to get ready for this date, is what I have to do. And you’re not helping.”

Lea tried to push back and keep the door open. “That’s what I’m trying to do! You can’t go out with Jack tonight!”

Lyssa flung the door open, and Lea fell face-first into the room. “Klutz,” Lyssa said, stepping over her. “Now what’s this about not going out with Jack?” She grabbed the back of Lea’s shirt and lifted her to her legs. “What have you heard?”

“It’s…” Lea felt her nose gingerly. No blood this time. Given the stink her sister had made the last time she got a bloody nose, that was welcome. “It’s complicated,” she started to say before her sister was shoving her to the door again. “It’s complicated but it’s really important because I don’t want you to die!!

Well. That was new.

Lyssa glanced at the clock. She was running late, yes, but that was just part of the standard routine for new boys. And Jack Browley might be Jack Browley, but she wasn’t going to give him any kind of special treatment. Not yet anyway.

“Okay,” she said, sitting at her desk. “Fine.” She turned to the small mirror she’d propped up and started slowly applying eyeshadow. “Go ahead. Tell me exactly why I shouldn’t be going out to the movies with the captain of the swim team. With the rich and handsome younger brother of TV’s Biff Browley? With the student council-” She winced as she said it, but a title was a title “-vice president?” She glared at her sister’s reflection. “I cannot wait to hear this.”

Lea sat on the bed, and her mouth had gone dry. Only two years separated the girls, but Lyssa had made up for that unfortunately small gap my grabbing as much power as she could, ever since Lea was able to understand what power was. Lyssa had all the new clothes. She was the one who arranged the presents for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day and made sure they knew it. She was the one who checked Lea’s report cards before their parents got home, and made damn sure that she couldn’t hide them.

If their parents died, Lyssa would be the next in the chain of command. She knew it. She loved it.

“Well,” Lea gulped, “it’s like this.” She started to crack her knuckles and then stopped as soon as Lyssa’s back straightened. “He’s… he’s not a nice boy,” she said.

“I know he’s not a nice boy.” Lyssa applied her thumb to her eyelid to try and smooth out the eyeshadow. “If he was a nice boy, I wouldn’t be going out with him.” She wiped her thumb on a tissue. “Keep going, but just know that I’m getting bored very quickly.”

Lea took a deep breath. “Ithinkhe’sawerewolf.”

That got her attention. Lyssa sat up and slowly turned around. At any other time, Lea would have had to stifle a laugh at seeing her sister only half made-up, but this time she was too scared to worry about that. Lyssa stood up, hooked her thumbs in her belt and walked over to the bed. “Say that again,” she said. “Slowly.’

“I… um… I think he’s a werewolf.”

“A werewolf.”

Lea nodded.

“A werewolf.”

Lea nodded again.

“A werewolf.”

Lea didn’t really think she had to nod again.

“Sweet jumping Jesus,” Lyssa said, grabbing her sister by the arm and hauling her to her feet. “I knew letting you read Twilight was a bad idea.” She opened the door again, but kept her hold on Lea. “Jack Browley may be many things. A great swimmer, richer than sin, and a little bit too fond of… well, let’s just say he gets bored easily with girls.” She smiled. “But a werewolf? Have you seen him? I have been to every swim meet this term, and I don’t think there’s a single hair left below his eyebrows.”

“But -”

“No.” She pushed Lea out into the hall. “I don’t care what stupid books you read or what craziness your brain is feeding you. Jack is not a werewolf.” She glanced back at the clock. “And now I actually am late.” She slammed the door in Lea’s face and locked it.

Lea stood outside her sister’s bedroom clenching and unclenching her fists. She knew what she knew, and she knew what he was. She couldn’t prove it. Not yet. But she knew.

She walked down the stairs, taking deep breaths to try and be normal, but it was probably no good. Werewolves could smell fear, she’d read. As she got to the bottom of the stairs, she could look into the living room. Jack and her father were sitting on the sofa, each one with a can of soda in hand. They were laughing about something – probably dad telling another one of his stories about his days on the basketball team – and Lea felt her chest tighten just a little more.

Jack turned to look at her. She must have made a noise.

“Hey, Lea,” he said, white teeth shining in the lamplight. Were they sharp? They looked sharp. “Is your sister ready yet? We’re running late for the movie.”

“She… She’ll be down in a minute,” Lea said.

“Their mother was the same way,” her father said. “One time I waited for an hour and a half in her father’s house, and this guy is an ex-Marine! Guns everywhere you looked!” The two of them laughed again. Lea took it as a cue to go to the kitchen.

Before she could turn away, though, Jack caught her eye. He looked at her, and she could swear his eyes had a gold tint to them. Maybe it was just the light. Maybe.

He winked.

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