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“No doubt Rachel gets ass injections,” I found myself saying out loud and instantly snapped my mouth shut, looking over at Cannon.

He turned his head slowly toward me, his expression showing a little bit of surprise, but then it turned to amusement. Leaning back in his seat, his grin was full on now. “Damn, Stel, you are really not liking Rachel, huh?”

I blew it off like it was no big deal, but the truth was I couldn’t stand the girl Cannon was hanging out with lately. I didn’t know what they were to each other aside from Rachel hanging on him like she wanted to be the future Mrs. Cannon Ash.

I didn’t even want to think about him touching her in any capacity. She was vile, superficial, and so into petty bullshit it was nauseating.

But if I was being honest, I thought and felt that about any girl Cannon hung out with. I was pretty possessive of his time and affection.

“I kind of like jealousy on you, Stella.” He winked and I felt this little tingle fill me. “You know you’re my number one girl. No one will ever compare to you.”

I blushed but rolled my eyes. “You’re so full of shit.”

His face was serious. “I’d never lie to you.”

I knew he wouldn’t. I knew he’d always be honest with me.

“Besides, I don’t do relationships.”

“Yeah, I know.”

“You really don’t like her though?”

“She’s fine,” I lied easily as I focused on my textbooks, acting like I really didn’t care. I felt his gaze on me and glanced up.

“Who do you think you’re talking to? I can read you like an open book.”

I exhaled and crossed my arms under my breasts. “She’s a bitch, Cannon. It’s no secret. She’s using you because she thinks it’ll make her social standing higher. It’s weird as hell.”

His expression was humorous at first, but then he nodded and grew serious. “Yeah, I know she is.”

I lifted an eyebrow. “Then why are you even hanging out with her? She’s the biggest bitch of all of them.” Not only was she superficial as hell, but I also didn’t miss how she looked down at me, almost swearing every time she saw Cannon and me together.

He shrugged. “She’s a clinger, Stel. She’s like a piece of gum stuck to the bottom of a shoe.”

I snorted.

“I don’t know, to be honest. Maybe I haven’t told her to fuck off because of boredom? She’s tolerable when she parties and drinks.”

I scrunched my nose and he shook his head, laughing. “Get your mind out of the gutter, Stella. I didn’t mean it in a sexual way.”

“I have a dirty mind?” I lifted a brow. “That’s funny.” He had the dirtiest mind of anyone I knew. Maybe that’s why we got along so well.

Although I’d never actually seen or heard about him screwing other girls, a guy who looked like him, a guy as popular as Cannon, no doubt was experienced.

Me, on the other hand … my experience went as far as a sloppy make-out session and getting groped in the back of the movie theater in the ninth grade. Now as a soon-to-be eighteen-year-old and a senior in high school, I was as inexperienced and prudish as they came.

“You still coming over tonight to help me study?”

I looked at the clock and saw my next class was starting soon, so I grabbed my books and started shoving them in my bag at the same time I nodded in response to Cannon. “Yeah, is eight okay? I have to work a couple hours at Pete’s, but then I can swing by.” I felt a shift in the air and I glanced up at Cannon. His face was expressionless, his eyes hard. I exhaled and rolled my eyes. “You’re not gonna get weird about it again, are you?”

He made a gruff sound, as if he were frustrated. “You mean get as weird as Pete is?”

I rolled my eyes again and shook my head. “He’s just an old, lonely guy.”

Cannon snorted humorlessly. “Yeah, an old lonely perv who likes high school girls.”

I wrinkled my nose and looked up at him. I’d been working at Pete’s body shop for the past year, answering phones and filing invoices. It wasn’t exactly my dream job by any means, but he paid well, worked around my school schedule, and really all I had to deal with was his weird personality and wandering eyes at times.

But overall, he was a decent guy, just not decent in Cannon’s eyes.

I stood and put my backpack on, looking down at Cannon, who was leaning back in his chair again, staring up at me. “I’ll see you at eight, okay?”

“Sounds good.” He straightened and narrowed his eyes. “Tell me if he gets nasty with you.”

“Nasty with me?”

“Yeah, if he checks out your tits again, kick him in the balls. Or I can come down and do it.”


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