Chapter Six – Reagan

"You know," I interjected loudly, "there are plenty of empty classrooms in this school."

Darren, who happened to be sitting across from me at our lunch table, jerked apart from Nicole. The two been permanently attached by the mouth ever since they'd sat down at the table. Sickening. "Then you could just get it over with," I continued, "and the rest of us can finally eat in peace."

Matt, one of the jocks sitting nearby, snickered. "Nice one Reagan," he said, and gave me a high five.

Lunchtime at Thomas Jefferson has always been an interesting affair. I was sitting with the usual group – the jocks, the cheerleaders, and the rest of the social elite – at a table in the center of the cafeteria. Claire sat beside me, poking at her salad with disinterest. Darren was sitting straight across from me and Nicole was on his other side. At least that's where she was supposed to be sitting. Sometime during their gross public display of affection, she'd managed to climb onto his lap.

Darren regarded me with amusement. Nicole flushed, and returned to her seat rather ungracefully.

"Don't remember you complaining about public displays at Englander's beach party, Reagan" Darren said softly to me. "In fact, I believe you were too busy gluing yourself to Jordan in a very public display, wouldn't you agree?"

I blushed, but pretended to be unaffected. "Darren," I said in a pointed tone, speaking as I would to a 4-year old, "it's completely different. That was a party. That's what people do at parties." I gave him my sweetest smile, and tossed my hair over my shoulder. "But we're in the cafeteria now."

He smiled and shook his head, but didn't reply. This was a change. Usually, Darren jumps at any chance to argue with me. He's basically the only person at Thomas Jefferson who will ever contradict me, and I'm pretty sure he does it just for fun. It's probably because we grew up together, and still think of each other as kids. Darren used to live across the street from me, and he's been in my class ever since the first grade. I guess there have been so many embarrassing memories between the two of us that it isn't possible for us not to be friends. I cringe every time I remember the disastrous valentine I sent him back in second grade, when I had a major crush on him. And I know he'd rather forget about that time in first grade when he chased me around the schoolyard trying to kiss me.

Thankfully, we're just friends now.

"Speaking of Jordan," Nicole cut in, jolting me back from my trip down memory lane, "isn't he supposed to be here?"

"He told me after second period that he had to skip lunch today," I informed her, "something about swim tryouts."

Nicole rolled her eyes, but I paid no attention. I had become distracted by a shock of red in the corner of my eye.

Simone Sinclair, the very girl I had been waiting for, had just entered the cafeteria. She was led by a tall blonde with a distinctively familiar face. It was Nicole's loser twin - Elise - or whatever her name was. Nicole followed my gaze, and I saw her visibly stiffen at the sight of her sister.

I nudged Claire, who had also noticed Simone enter.

"That's her right?" I whispered. "Angela Sinclair's daughter?"

Claire nodded, not bothering to take her eyes off the pair. They entered the cafeteria line. I watched as they loaded up their trays and paid at the cash register. Then, with their trays in tow, they headed towards a table at the back of the cafeteria. They were going to sit with the brains.

Its okay for Allison to sit with them, I noted, annoyed, but Simone's got more class than that. I pushed my cafeteria chair back and left the table, striding purposefully towards the pair.

I could feel the eyes of those at my table staring at me. As usual.

Simone and the twin stopped in mid track when they saw me approach.

"Hi," I said to Simone, as friendly as I could muster. I ignored the blonde. "You're Simone Sinclair, right?"

She nodded, tucking a strand of hair behind her ear.

"I'm Reagan," I said. "Jordan – my boyfriend - he told me that you're staying at his house."

Actually, Jordan hadn't mentioned Simone once, but I needed a reason to persuade her to join us. Plus, from the way her eyes lit up ever so slightly by the mention of his name, I knew I had stumbled upon something. Very interesting.

"So," I continued, "he usually sits with my friends over at that table." I waved my hand behind me. "Do you want to join us?"

Simone looked uncertainly at her friend.

"Uh -" she began.

"Both of you can sit with us, of course," I added, cutting her off. I had forgotten about Nicole's twin, standing protectively beside Simone.

The blonde girl hesitated, and then shrugged. "Sure, whatever," she muttered.

"Great," I said. I led the two of them back to my table.

A few minutes later, and Simone was comfortably settled beside me and on the other side of Claire. Her friend had sat down beside her, at the far end of the table. I chose to ignore her as she was hardly within my line of sight.

"This is Claire," I said to Simone, introducing her to the people sitting around me. "You could say she's the Paris Hilton of Thomas Jefferson."

Simone nodded, her eyes fixed on Claire. "I've heard about you," she said. "Your family owns hotels?"
Claire waved her hand breezily, almost knocking over her own Evian bottle. "Yeah. Mostly my dad does stuff."

Her intelligence never fails me.

"You're probably used to wealth, though, right?" Nicole interjected, to Simone. She had finally torn herself away from Darren, who leaned back against his seat looking bored. "I mean, didn't your mom make like 20 million for Strange Accusations?"

Simone blushed. "She doesn't share financial stuff with me. Only with her accountant and lawyers. So I wouldn't know."

The conversation carried on in this sort of manner. Someone would raise a point about Simone, such as "you don't look like Angela Sinclair at all," or "have you ever met Jude Law?" She would answer it, and somebody else would raise another random question. Once, someone even tried to engage Nicole's twin in the conversation.

"You are the spitting image of Nicole," one of the football players remarked.

She made a face at Nicole, and then said, "No kidding. I'm her sister."

"Elisha's usually sitting over there," Nicole said, nodding her head towards the table in the corner, where the brains sat. I looked over to their table to see Allison, David Summers, and Grace Chan with their heads bent together, as if sharing a secret.

I smiled to myself. David had a secret all right. He once made out with me at one of Claire's parties. That was back in the beginning of sophomore year, when he was good looking, and always made me laugh in government class. Then one night, he actually showed up one of Claire's parties. I now have trouble believing that I actually kissed the guy. And of course, David's such a huge nerd that he'll never reveal what happened to his friends, out of embarrassment.

About 20 minutes before the end of lunch, after I'd heard Simone's complete life story, I got up to leave.

"I have to make a trip to the bathroom," I announced to the group. Nicole and Claire didn't get up to follow me. They already knew the routine.

I left the cafeteria and entered the nearest girl's bathroom. Two scantily-clad freshmen were standing in front of the mirror, reapplying their makeup.

I glared at them as I entered. Sure enough, they recognized me, and scampered out of the bathroom like mice.

Finally, I was alone.

I tiptoed into the nearest stall, and quietly locked the door. I got down on my knees. The smell of the toilet was nauseating – almost enough to make a girl puke. Not quite enough, though. Leaning forwards, I stuck my finger down my throat.

Authors Note: Yay! I've finally updated chapter six... please review and tell me what you think! I'm sorry that I haven't posted in....a few months. But I'm going to be pretty slow. College applications, SAT's, essays, and homework is piling up on me, so I will try my best to get working on the next chapter, but it might not be for a while. Or maybe it'll be very quick, because I 3 the next chapter. Thanks to everyone who reviewed! You guys motivate me to write :)

Next Chapter: Grace....meets Darren.