Full Summary: Charley Thomson has just about had it with jocks. She would always fall for their charming, killer, looks in the beginning and end up getting dumped in the end. She decides to swear off jocks for good, making a bet with her forever-and-always 'Queen of Dares' best friend, Erin. When she thinks she's finally met the perfect non-jock candidate for a boyfriend, he doesn't seem to be too interested in her! How will she ever make him fall in love with her by the end of the summer — all the while, trying not to gag every time she sees Erin and her boyfriend together, or even her MOM who seems to be having a secret romance with her boss, making sure her five-year-old, tantrum-loving, younger brother behaves, and avoiding one very annoying baseball jock who just can't seem to leave her alone? This will be one tough summer for Charley, and it will take everything she has to prevent herself from striking out again in the jocks' game.


. One : "The Root Of All Evil" .


"It's not you, Thomson. You're an amazing girl, perfect just the way you are, but you're not for me. I just think that you deserve someone better than me—"

I rolled my eyes in disgust. Really? When were they ever going to learn; using cheesy break up lines isn't going to make dumping me any better. I've got to say, though, Chase was the worst of them all.

Not only did he obviously plan this whole break up date, he had to go all out and bring me to my favourite restaurant (The Last Samurai) too and do it here. I mean, I don't know if this was his sick, twisted, way of trying to be a gentlemen and soften the blow, but this was just pathetic. Did he really think I want to be reminded of the fact that my favourite restaurant was also the place I got dumped?

Idiot.

I knew I shouldn't have said 'yes' the first time he asked me out. Couples with the same first letter in their names are almost always doomed to fail. But I just couldn't resist that shy, bashful smile of his, and the colour of his brown eyes sparkling back at me.

Now, however, I could only see a creepy, pedophile-looking "grin" on his face as he attempted to look apologetic and cute, and dull, lifeless eyes boring into mine. I honestly did not know what I saw in him.

As if the overused break up line wasn't bad enough, it was like Chase had searched up 'good ways to break up with a girl' online and spat each and every one he found out to me.

"I just think that it's better if we try dating other people…test the waters a bit. Maybe if we see each other again, and still feel the same way, we could get back together or something." Yeah. Highly unlikely.

"I'm just not relationship-material, and I feel like we're moving way too fast." I wanted to kick him so much right now, because if he thought that kisses on the cheek and one date every three weeks is 'moving way too fast', then I don't know how he's ever going to get a wife before he turns sixty.

"This is really hard for me to do…" Yeah, that's why you had to go on Google and search up all these lame quotes that make absolutely no sense put together. "…but I'm sorry to say…"

I squeezed my eyes shut and prayed that he would just spit it out already.

"I'm…" Chase made a pained expression as if it really did hurt him to say it—as if I was some fragile piece of China he needed to handle with care. I've been through this way too many times, and if he thought that I was head over heels in love with him, and would be devastated without him…he was wrong. "…giving us space to work out any emotional issues."

Kill me now.

What the hell was that supposed to mean? God, this boy can't even spit out the words, "I'm breaking up with you," without getting all choked up and…weird about it.

As if that wasn't bad enough, he managed to add the dreaded…

"I hope we can still be friends." Chase smiled, all of his crooked teeth showing hideously. "I don't want us to hate each other or anything. I mean, I still see you in school next year and—"

That's it.

I've had break ups that took long, but nothing compared to this.

I stood up from my seat and gave him my most charming smile. "Chase," I cooed, my teeth gritted so hard, it might snap soon.

"Yes?" Clueless, idiotic, moron. He actually thought I'd be okay with the break-up.

Well, actually, I wouldn't mind it so much if it wasn't so horrible. He had me wait for almost two hours before he finally got started with his break up speech. This had to be the worst break up I've ever had. I'll be damned if I let him get away easily.

"It's not you..." I raised my purse threateningly at him, ready to swing it as hard as I could. "It's your cheesy break up lines."

And...smack!

And then, just because I was sick of getting dumped by too-cute-to-be-true, mindless, senseless jocks, I spun back to our table and threw both of our drinks into his face. "Next time you want to dump a girl, don't do it at her favourite restaurant!"

Chase cried out in pain—he's always been a big baby—while I strutted away in satisfaction, disregarding his shouts, and the curious stares of onlookers around the restaurant.

I didn't care if everyone at the restaurant thought I was crazy. Some people might've thought I overreacted a bit, but I thought he deserved it. I thought I deserved to do that to him. After getting the same lines from the same no-good, sports-obsessed, scums you call 'jocks', I thought that I might've probably under-reacted.

This was ridiculous. Chase was probably the tenth "relationship" I've had these past four months, and every time, I would always be the one having to hear the tacky lines. After the incident with Felix, where he flirted with me for weeks and then told me that he was interested in college girls when I finally tried to make a move on him, I thought I'd never get back to dating again.

And then I met Chase.

God, I'm horrible. I really am. It's like I can't go one week without flirting or dating with some guy. And that 'some guy' always just happens to be a jock. Why is it that all of the nice, sensitive, considerate guys in the world are mostly freaks? I didn't want to be shallow, but it's true. All of the gorgeous hunks turn out to be dicks.

It really isn't fair.

I slipped my phone out of my pocket and dialed my best friend's number while I started on the path towards my house. It sucks that Chase had drove me here and so I had to walk all the way back home.

Erin knew I was going out with Chase again, but unfortunately, she also knew that getting dumped was familiar territory to me. The line kept ringing for a while, and I was afraid that she wouldn't pick up.

Ever since Erin started dating Tyler, they've been inseparable. I almost never see her without him. And they always have that cute, but sick couple-y air around them when they're together. Even though they are a pretty odd couple. Like for instance, instead of ending their phone calls with, "I love you!" and "Love you too!", they end it with:

"Demon."

"Baby."

"Jerk."

"Cutie."

Then..."I hate you."

And finally: "The feeling's mutual."

Click.

So I don't get how you could get a lovesick couple from that, but you do. And it actually will make you barf if you hang out with them long enough.

I'm happy for her—she found the one jock in the world who isn't (that much of) a jerk—but I also envy her. And miss her a ton. It seemed like I could never get her to myself anymore because she and Tyler will always have some date or whatever that they have to attend.

Just when I thought she has no time to talk to me and won't pick up, her soft voice chirped up from the other end of the line. "Hey, Char." I heard her yawn and then snort. "That was attractive..."

I laughed, relieved that she could still answer the phone with her usual quirkiness. So her personality didn't change when she started dating Tyler. But I knew it wouldn't. Tyler is crazy about her—just the way she is. He wouldn't expect her to change one bit.

"Yeah, it was," I teased, trying to make my tone light and happy.

It didn't work. When you've been best friends with someone for as long as we have, they always know how you're feeling.

"How did he say it this time?" Erin asked gloomily, her voice resembling closely to a worn-out parent worrying about her problem child.

"I think he searched up all of the pick up lines he could find, and put them together to make a cheesy break up speech. And when I say 'speech', I mean an hour long speech." I told her the basic gist of what Chase had told me and Erin kept making disapproving sounds the more she heard them.

"Ugh. That's just pathetic. I don't understand how someone that cute could be so..."

"Lackadaisical?" I supplied.

Erin laughed and I imagined her shaking her head in amusement. "Whatever that means."

"It means to lack vitality and purpose; lazy," I recited fluently like a dictionary. My mind is able to seep random bits of information and remember them clearly as if I'd just read them. I have a part photographic memory. I've never told anyone though—even Erin—for some reason, it made me feel like a freak.

"I don't know why you act so dumb in front of guys," Erin continued, "If the guy really likes you, he'll like you for the way you are—"

"I've heard this all before, Rin," I cut in impatiently, "Trust me. Guys don't like it when you hold some sort of superiority over them. They have it in their male, egotistical mind that they have to be the dominant one in the relationship—meaning, the stronger, smarter one—or the relationship won't last. Our role as girls would forever be doomed to pleasing the male population and making them sandwiches in the kitchen, where we belong."

"Remind me to never get you started on a sexist rant ever again."

I rolled my eyes, feeling extremely crabby at this moment; not really in the mood to banter with her. "Remember that guy we met at the sports shop three months ago? José? We played tennis with him and he would pout and sulk for fifteen minutes every time we scored a point. His movements were too aggressive and it made him sluggish and uncoordinated. I could've easily beaten him. You think he would've taken me out that night if we hadn't lost on purpose?"

"Well, okay, but not all guys are like that, Charles," Erin argued in a small, feeble voice. I knew she was defending her boyfriend, who, I'll admit, isn't that bad. But I knew that he hated losing to a girl just as much as any jock.

"You're right," I told her, and added bitterly, "Just all jocks."

"Tyler—"

"Erin, you suck at sports," I bluntly stated, "Obviously he wouldn't feel threatened by you. If I were to go up against him, I'm pretty sure he'll feel threatened by me and unleash his inner jerk-ness that all jocks seem to have."

I heard Erin suck in an irritated breath and she hissed at me. "What are you saying, Charley?"

"I'm saying that I think I'm going to give up dating...—"

"Are you serious? You can barely pass by the cashier guy at the grocery store without winking at him!"

"—jocks," I finished, completely ignoring what she said.

I spotted my house a few blocks from where I was standing. The houses were all completely dark at this point, but I couldn't help but notice the one house that wasn't. The lights on one of the upstairs bedroom were turned on and I saw the silhouettes of two figures through the window.

Naive kids, they were. Like they'd actually be stupid enough to think their parents were stupid enough to not know what they were doing up there. With the noises they were making, I was surprised the whole neighbourhood hadn't been woken up yet.

Suddenly, the lights from the other bedroom were flicked on, and I saw the door to the make-out couple's room fling wide open. A man—who I assumed to be the daughter's father—came in with a furious look on his face, his fists out and ready to beat the crap out of the boy. The father lunged for the boy, but he was already climbing out the window. I watched as the boy slid swiftly down the roof and onto the ground, uninjured. He stood up to brush the dirt from his pants and I took a staggering step back when I got a clearer view of his face.

Felix.

"Charley?"

I growled at him and picked up a random rock to chuck at him. I missed, of course. If only he wasn't so reflexive.

"Charley, look, I know you're probably angry with me—"

That's the understatement of the year, I thought, I freaking despise you! I'd planned on yelling that last part out, but for some reason, my anger had choked up my vocal chords and I couldn't speak. So instead, I opted for another rock to speak for me.

That flying rock that landed on his temple spoke volumes.

I dashed away from him and that house as fast as I could. What are the chances that the college girl he was interested in happened to live just five houses away from mine? So throughout all the times he flirted with me and came over to my house, he was only visiting her?

That. Son. Of. A—

"Hello? Char, why aren't you answering? Are you even listening to me?" I had completely forgotten about Erin on the other line. I didn't want to tell her about Felix now. I just wanted to crawl into my bed and not talk to anyone ever again for the rest of my life—especially not jocks.

This has been one hell of a night...and by that I mean that this night has been hell.

I rubbed my eyes tiredly. "I'm here. What were you saying?"

"I'm not going to repeat my whole rant over again," she deadpanned, "I just think that you shouldn't give up on jocks. Not all of them are bad, okay? Maybe you just need to expand your options a little bit more. You don't always have to date the really, really, really gorgeous ones. Maybe you could just settle for the really gorgeous ones instead."

I sighed. As much as I loved her, she really wasn't helping me right now. "Erin—"

"I just think you're slightly overreacting."

And that did it.

That word. I hated that word. If anybody has been through what I've been through these past months, they'll all understand that I am, in no way, overreacting.

"I am not overreacting," I kept my voice as leveled and even as possible, trying to suppress the real anger I was feeling inside. "I am very tired. And I'm going to call you back before I say some things that I don't want to say to you."

Erin huffed at me and I could see her rolling her eyes. "Fine. Give up on jocks. Just don't come running to me when your little prejudice idea does not work out."

"Oh it will," I seethed, glancing back at Felix's retreating form with a strong amount of loathing in my eyes. "Jocks are the root of all evil."

- OOO -


A/N: So I just want to make something clear: I do NOT have any problems with jocks or anything like that. You'll find in this story that Charley can be a little overdramatic. But I just want to say that I don't have a problem with jocks. :) Although I do suck at sports, most of my friends are jocks. So yeah. Anyways, this is obviously a new story. But not-so-new either. I just felt like Charley deserves her story to be told and I wanted to write it. I really hope you guys like it. Review please!