Chapter 1

Ailey

Cloverside High -a name given by the fact that the outer fields of the large school are covered in clovers- was a public school that had a reputation of being made to rich kids. It was large and beautifully painted in it's school colors; green and silver. Not many were outside, mostly the athletes and such. Most likely practicing for an up coming game. Everyone outside could hear Yasmin Berk screech like a banshee as Dana Gosling stumbled out of formation for the umpteenth time that very morning. Many of the other athletes watched on as Dana was ruthlessly degraded and humiliated with Yasmin's verbal thrashing. The poor girl's face was nearly as red as her ponytail. That is, until Ailey McCullough stepped through the crowd of onlookers and strutted straight towards the cheer squad.

Ailey McCullough, a girl who's ethnicity is always being questioned because of her indigenous features contrasting against her Irish last, was the it girl. Every guy wanted to sleep with her and every girl wanted to be her. She was known to be vicious to most, though there was a few other students that she had a soft spot for. Dana Gosling was one of those few. She let no one get away with ridiculing the poor girl -at least not in front of her. Oh, excuse me, I'm talking in third person again, aren't I? My apologies. Let's return to the relevant part of the story, shall we?

As I'm sure you've guessed by this point; I, Ailey McCullough, was not very happy to see the unfortunate ditz I've claimed as my best friend being yelled at by the caramel-toned harpy. "Is there a problem?" was the first thing I asked once I reached shapeless bratz doll and the ginger barbie. I couldn't help but feel delighted as Yasmin's eyes shimmered with anxiety at the mere sight of me. I could see her trying to sneak an angry glance at Dana as she attempted to find a way to spin the whole situation.

"Of course not," Yasmin smiled, attempting to hide her discomfort as she straightened herself. She was barely taller than me, about half an inch or so, yet she was now attempting to tower over me. I scoffed with a single eye roll.

I took a step closer, continued to smile and gave a single blink as I watched her struggle to not step away. "I think they've had enough training for the time, don't you? Class is about to start, after all," I swiped around, allowing my long, chestnut hair to swing across Yasmin's face. "You," I looked towards Dana. "You're dumb enough, you don't need to be missing any of your classes."

"Right," she let out an awkward giggle as she skipped awkwardly to what ever her first class was.

"The rest of you aren't any smarter," I snapped at the other cheerleaders and watched the rest of the squad scamper away. It was fun being the boss. "Where's Peter?" I turned towards one of the football players; a quiet guy named Caleb.

"Hurt his ankle a little while ago. He went to make sure it wasn't anything serious," Caleb stuttered out, not able to look me in the eyes. It was obvious that he was afraid I was going to blow my lid. They should know me by now. We're juniors, after all, most of them have known me for three years. I let out a breath and rolled my eyes at his skittish attitude. How Caddie was dating him, I had no idea.

"You morons need to start toughing up," I let out a groan as I pushed passed Caleb and the rest of the players. "You're jocks, for crying out load. Start acting like it!" my tone kept calm, though my tone was obviously venomous. I could feel a smirk on my face as I stomped inside the school building. The marble flooring allowed my heels to cause an echo as they collided. I took only a couple of turns before reaching the nurse's office. "Peter," I smiled as I took in the familiar sight of a golden scruff of hair.

"Ailey, what are you doing here?" Peter looked at me with his baby blue eyes and a bright smile. He adjusted himself in the chair that he was resting in. I looked around, but he seemed to be alone. I would have asked where the nurse had gone, as she obviously gave him an ice pack for his hurt ligament, but I really didn't care.

"Caleb told me you hurt your ankle? Are you alright?" I asked as I slowly sat onto his lap and wrapped my arms around his shoulders to hold myself in that spot.

"Are you asking because you're worried about me or because you're worried how the game will go without me?" He playfully mocked as moved my hair out of way before resting his head on my shoulder.

"What do you think?" I brushed my fingers through his hair as he nuzzled against my neck. His warm breath felt surprisingly nice.

"Knowing you and how competitive attitude," he lifted his head with a flirtatious simper to his lips. "I'd say answer B."

"A+ for that answer," I coo as I press my lips against his for a short time. Unfortunately, The first bell rang. "Let's hope that was your only pop quiz, huh? I don't have much confidence you'll be too good with any others," I shift myself off of him and stood. "We'll continue this after school?"

"I'm fine with lunch," he snickered as he watched me adjust my outfit.

"I'm not," I told him, turning serious for at least that moment. "Lunch is reserved. You know this."

He quickly began to pout. "Do you have to spent it every day with those two? I'm sure they can handle one lunch without you." I knew he wasn't attempting to anger me. Yet every single sound that flooded out as he attempted to convince me to change my mind cause me to see red.

I turned away from him, giving a quick grunt to let him know I was not in the mood to hear his whining. "You know full well Dana and Phoebe would be doomed if I didn't sit with them. I mean, I love Caddie, I do. But she's made it a habit to torment my friends and I'll be damned if I give her the chance to go all out on them. If I let her torment them, they could leave. They're the most interesting part about this damned school, Peter. I'm not letting anyone take away my entertainment," and without giving him even a second to respond, I left for my first class.

I was pleasantly surprised after entering my first lesson of the day -Physical Science- as I wasn't aware that I'd catch a glance of Phoebe Diggs, let alone actually have her as a classmate for the hour. We'd never had a class since day one of freshman year. "Well, well, aren't you a sight for sore eyes, Chubs," I gave a quick wink before pushing the frail looking boy that made the mistake of taking the seat next to my girl.

"Ice queen!" she bounced in excitement as she struggled to lean over and wrap her arms around me. The seats did have a bit of a distance between them. It took a moment, but despite her short stature, she was able to lean far enough to embrace me. "I was wondering if I was going to be able to get a lab partner! I don't know many people here, so I was a bit scared. But here you are, in all of your cold glory!" A moment of silence as I just stared at her in amusement. "You will be my lab partner right? I'm pretty sure none of these guys dig me much."

Phoebe had always been a bit of a kiss ass. Not that I'm complaining; I loved that she put me on a pedestal. Though, for such a pudgy little thing, she was always so full of energy. Never really knew how she wasn't more muscled when she runs around -usually in three inch heels no less-. "Quirky ball of energy or one of the drab, colorless drones? Ball please," I think it it took a moment for her to realize that I had just accepted her lab offer, but she eventually thrusted her fist in the air in victory over it. "You're such a dork, you know that?"

"Damn straight, M'lady" she flashed a grin and we both adjusted ourselves as the class officially began.

Throughout most of the class, we communicated through hand signs. Most of them confused the teacher, when he attempted to figure it all out but he knew not to put us on the spot for it. Not if he wanted to keep his job. Having your parents be the biggest investor of your school certainly has its perks. Other than that, the class mostly took the time to introduce themselves. When it came to my introduction, however, the teacher seemed to attempt to skip over it. I knew why; I needed no introduction. But that didn't mean I didn't deserve.

"I don't think so," I called out, turning my attention away from Phoebe as I forced the girl who was meant to be after me stop spouting her incredibly boring speech about how glad she was to be hear. Boring. We've all heard that before. "So, my turn," I sang as i stood from my seat, I could see Phoebe watching in anticipation over what I was doing. "As you irrelevant weasels know, my name is Ailey McCullough. Yes, I'm adopted. And before any of you ask, as most usually do, I have heritage from Mexico and the Crow, or Apsáalooke, nation. At least that's what I was told, I wasn't exactly raised by my birth parents. And, if the off chance that none of you clay-brained worms know who I am, I'm the daughter of the largest investor of this school. Piss me off, piss my parents off, and loose several benefits that you love about this school because the withering hags that take care of that stuff will no longer have the money for it. So, now with that done, you adorable morons can continue with your speech or what ever. Just don't make me have to repeat any of the information I've just shared with you, and we'll peacefully," I then returned to my seat and began communicating with Phoebe again. The girl from the moment before began to refuse to finish her speech afterwards. Oh well.

Leaving that class was unfortunate; for the next three hours, I was forced into a room of uneventful pricks. I'd say having Caddie in that third hour was an improvement, but all she did was ask about Peter and find reasons put her hands on Caleb. He wasn't much into the public affection, but he was too much into her to say anything. Poor hapless fool should learn to stand up for himself every now and then.

I was ecstatic to finally reach lunch. "So, this year I have Phoebe for a class and you have the balls to not be in a single one?" I teased as I sat across from Dana. Phoebe was in the middle of getting all three of our lunches. Thankfully, Caddie was in my sights, and she knew it, so she wasn't going to even attempt to get at the chubby nerd. "Do you know how much of a betrayal that is?"

"Hey, I couldn't help it. I had to given into temptation and take drama this year," Dana chuckled, unaffected by my faux anger. She just looked at me with her deep brown, doe eyes and smiled. "It was calling out to me."

"I got you pizza, my bitches," Phoebe sang as she pranced towards us, surprisingly balancing three treys with ease.

"Oh, Sweetheart, no," I took my trey from her left hand. "If anything, you're my bitch. Not the other way around."

"I love you too," she responded with a click of her tongue as she began to pipe down her several slices of pepperoni pizza.

"There is zero diversity in that pile, is there?" Dana have begun to skim Phoebe's trey in search for anything without pepperoni. Her mission was doomed to fail; Phoebe was a bit of a picky eater who just so happened to love eating. She was quite the scatter-brained contradiction. "Oh, speaking of looking around!" Dana let out a gasp. "I've got to go! I promised to meet up with this new guy and show him around. He's got to be waiting for me in the office."

For once, I knew how Peter has felt when I left him, though Dana didn't even give me a chance to beg for her to blow off her little meeting. "Rude," I huffed as I turned towards Phoebe. "Chubs, I'm going to let that slide this once because she's obviously lost a ton of brain cells from cheer accidents, but if you decided to do that to me. Know that you will have no excuse and I will end you. We don't ditch Ailey. Ditching Ailey ends in your social death."

Phoebe just let out a snort. "That's cute, you assume I have a social life to begin with."

"You've got to have something, don't you? You're not exactly shy?" I realized then that I had never really thought of how Phoebe was around others.

"Of course not, I have no issues with meeting or talking to people. People don't seem like they want to let me into their little bubble," she gave a shrug. "No worries though. I got you two, that's enough for me for the time."

"I'm enough for everyone," I hissed. "For all time."

"You know I love you," she snickered. "I say it all the time."

"Yeah, you do," I let out a satisfied sigh. "Stop being so clingy."

"No," was her response.