By: Angela McPherson

In the beginning, Kellie became my distraction. I didn't do relationships. I'd tried commitment before. It just never stuck. The next thing I knew we were a thing and I'd fallen in love with her. Being with Kellie made me forget about wanting someone else. However, the closer the time came to seeing Elle, the closer I came to falling apart.

Distraction or not.


Summer had gone by in a blur. I couldn't believe it was time to head back to school already. I was still pissy at not being able to see the two people I missed most.

Heather had skipped town and Tristan left early due to football obligations.

"You're not still sulking are you?"

I rolled my eyes at Mom. "Of course not."

I’d moped around the first few days back, especially when Mom said Tristan had dropped by to say hi. Go figure she'd get to see him. It'd been forever since we'd seen one another.

"You'll let me know if you hear from Heather?"

"Of course," Mom said quickly, but she refused to look me in the eye.

All I ever did was worry about my sister. Whenever I asked my mom about her, she clammed up and became evasive, which wasn't normal.

The minute my dad left years ago, my mom stopped being a mom. When my sister lashed out, someone had to step up. So, I took charge. From then on, Mom pretended life was perfect while I shouldered the burdens of our broken family.

I'd attempted to call dad, but as predicted, his time didn't include me. I shouldn't have let his sidestepping my call bother me, but I guess I hoped he'd have changed. Truth was he sucked ass at being a dad.

When my parents divorced, he didn't simply move to a new home. He left the state and never looked back. My sister took his leaving hard, and my mom blamed him for her meltdowns and eventually, her drug addiction.

The drugs are why I'd been so worried about her. A few years ago, I'd given Heather a prepaid phone when it became clear she didn't want to get clean. Maybe I was as much of an enabler as my mom, but I slept better knowing she could reach me if she needed or wanted help. Problem with my plan was she rarely answered my calls. Oddly enough, she did stay in touch with our mom. They were more like best friends than mother and daughter.

“Honey, I’m glad you had a good summer."

“Yeah. Listen, don’t forget to call if you hear from Heather." My mom supplied me a tightlipped smile, and then quickly changed the subject.

“You’ve done so well in school, and I want you to know I’m proud of you." I could only stare. Compliments or even acknowledgement were few and far between. With her crazy near-mother-esque behavior, I said goodbye.

Now Alyssa and I were packed up and headed back to school. I really wanted the year to be drama free, but when living with three other females, drama never seemed far behind.

* * *

Bang Bang Bang

"Alyssa, wake your ass up. Now!" The sound of a fist slamming into the wood door grew hard to ignore, specifically since the noise woke me up from a dead sleep. Groggy and a little more than pissed, I shuffled over to the door. Opening it wide, I found a not too happy Ginger scowling at me.

"Sorry to wake you, Elle, but I need to talk to Alyssa. Is she here?" Ginger peeked over my shoulder, searching for my roommate and best friend, who of course chose to be AWOL at the moment.

"Sorry, Ginger, but she didn't come back from the party with me last night. I'm sure you can catch her," I turned to the clock on my night stand, "a little later today. She probably won't get in until after lunch."

With a huff, Ginger stormed down the hall toward her room. Needing more sleep, I hopped back in bed and prayed whatever Alyssa did this time wouldn't get her thrown out of our rented house. I couldn't afford to live here without her shared part of the rent. Pushing the disruption out of my mind, I let sleep take me, deeply.

Eight o'clock classes came way too early, especially when woken up in the middle of the night by an irate roommate and sorority sister, whose intent no doubt, was to kill your best friend. In truth, I had two best friends: Tristan Daniels and Alyssa Grant. While I loved them, they both equally enjoyed talking crap to each other as often as possible. The fact that Tristan didn't live here made their somewhat heated banter a current non-issue.

Tristan and I had been friends since we were in diapers, and Alyssa and I became fast friends the first day of Kindergarten. She and I did everything together, including getting into college and the Kappa house, though being in a sorority was more her idea than mine. Granted, I did enjoy the perks, such as the social opportunities. However, I could live without the not-so-entertaining drama associated with being around so many females. Particularly, when your best friend is caught sneaking off with one of your fellow sorority sister's boyfriends, but that's Alyssa for you. As long as he's not married, he's up for grabs. Then again, even married, she'd probably think of seducing him as a challenge or something.

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