Was it necessary for Axel to invite every asshole in his class to the party?
I wrenched my arm away and spun to face Caleb. If his visions didn’t already make me want to kick his ass, his skinny jeans and hipster smile did. Usually I’d just shake it off, but not tonight.
“What the hell is your problem!” I shoved him hard, and he stumbled back a few steps. “Do you really want me to see what goes on in your disgusting little mind? Do you think I want to see when you and Jessica were banging in your backseat? Do you think it turns me on? Because it doesn’t.” I poked him in the chest with my gloved-finger. “And if you think that I’d ever consider—”
“Tessa!” Axel said as he stepped between us. I don’t know how long he’d been yelling my name, but from the silence in the backyard, I could tell it’d been at least a few times.
Shit. Why did DJs always lower the music for a fight? Didn’t they know that drawing attention to it made it worse?
I swallowed and looked around. And there was Mr. MacAvoy in the flesh, staring at me like I was a complete nut-job. Just perfect.
“Freaky Tessa is at it again. Bitch doesn’t—”
My brother spun. I didn’t have time to stop him before he punched Caleb in the face.
Caleb groaned as he fell to the ground.
“No one calls my sister a bitch, you—”
Dad appeared behind Axel and grabbed him before Axel could do any more damage to Caleb. “What the hell is going on out here?” He looked from my brother to me and then to Caleb, who was holding his hand against his face. It wasn’t the first time this had happened, but it was the first time it’d happened during one of my father’s parties.
I stared at the ground hard. “It was my fault.” I didn’t choke on the words, but they didn’t come out easily.
“Tessa?” Mom said. “Why don’t you go upstairs, honey?”
I nodded, doing my best to not look disappointed and failing. It hadn’t been my idea to leave my room in the first place. Mom reached out to touch me, but I dodged her.
The crowd parted as I made my way inside. I tried not to listen to any of the whispers that followed in my wake. When I was halfway up the stairs, the DJ started playing again. By now, Mom would have taken care of Caleb, and Axel would go for a drive to wherever it was he went. And I would be here. Alone.
I couldn’t wait to leave LA. The less population density this new town had the better.
Still, I wondered if Texas would be any better. I hoped so, but Axel was right. If I didn’t learn to control these visions, my life would never be any kind of normal.
I was in bed trying to figure out how I’d let the night get so out of control when someone knocked on my door. Instead of waiting for an answer, Mom came in. She made her way around the boxes in my room and sat on the foot of my bed.
“On a scale of one to ten, how mad is Dad?”
Mom sighed. “He’s not mad, honey.”
I finally met her gaze. “I’m not buying that. I embarrassed him in front of all those people.”
“What’s a Hollywood party without a little drama?” She patted my leg. “We’re more worried about you.”
I stared at the ceiling. “It’s fine. I’m fine.”
“No. You’re not. But we’re hoping Texas will be better. That’s the whole reason we’re moving.”
I gathered my courage and hoped for the answer I wanted. “Is St. Ailbe’s a school for kids like me?”
She stuck her tongue out in a look of disgust. “No!” Then she laughed at herself. “No way. You would not fit in there. Trust me.”
Interesting. So who would fit in there? “Then why Texas? Why make Dad leave his job instead of making me switch schools again?”
I’d been through most of the private ones in Los Angeles while in lower school. By third grade, I’d exhausted all options. They finally sent me back to my original one. It was a good school, but that’s not why I went back there. The thinking was that my brother could keep an eye out for me. Their plan sort of worked. But my brother graduated, so that was that. Why my parents refused for me to do home schooling was beyond me. It would’ve made life so much easier.
“There’s really no one left who will take you besides Westlake, and I know you don’t want to stay there.”
Well that was embarrassing. “What about the public schools?”
Mom shook her head. “Not in this county. I want you to have an excellent education in a safe setting. And with your brother going off to college, it’s time for a new place. I always wanted an excuse to move back to Texas anyhow.”