I really didn't like that girl.
Grudgingly, I put up the rest of the eggs in silence. I had just made a complete fool of myself. Not just because I'd lost an arguement with her. But because...I had been so attracted to her. Don't ask me why. I don't know. I don't even like her. It was just basic biology...she was a really hot girl, and she was standing right in front of me in a dripping wet, white tank top. Yeah. Then I get caught staring at her ass. I couldn't help it. It's not my fault that I'm a guy. It's not my fault that she's hot. Also not my fault that she's so mean.
"Hey, Luke. You seen Sadie?" It was Matt. He didn't look too happy. Then again, Matt never looked too happy.
Of course, all us guys were smart enough not to ask why. For one, we didn't want him to kill us. For two, we all knew that Matt had had a rough life. His mom died when he was three years old. She was my mom's sister and my aunt Lydia. Matt grew up with his alcoholic step-dad, who'd only been married to his mom for a month before she died. Too bad for Matt that he was stuck with him, since his real dad had ditched him when Matt was born. I'm not really sure on all the details...I know Matt's stepdad-David-wasn't very nice to him, and David was thrown in jail when Matt was eleven. Matt's lived with my uncle ever since. We're pretty sure my uncle is the only one who can handle him. We're sure on that because, once a few years back, Matt had gotten into a fight with one of the extra ranch-hands, and my uncle was the only one who could calm Matt down. Which was good, because Matt was one punch away from literally killing the ranch-hand, who never came back after that.
I'll be honest. Matt made me nervous sometimes. Don't get me wrong, I loved him-as much as you love a cousin you only see once a year, anyway. He just...something seemed off about him. Sometimes I wonder if he's on drugs. I could see that happening.
I realized that Matt was staring at me expectantly, waiting for an answer. I shook myself out of my reservie and shook my head. "No. I mean yeah. She was here a minute ago."
"You know where she went?"
I studied Matt for a moment. I wonder if he looks intimidating to people who don't know him. He had thick, corded muscles from working, but that wasn't quite it. It was more the expression...the utter confidence and steel that shone in his pale blue eyes. He looked like someone who knew he could pummel you.
"No. She seemed pretty hacked though. She'd managed to dump a bucket of water over on herself." I held Matt's gaze steadily. I really hoped he wouldn't realize I was lying, but...sometimes Matt was weird like that. Like he could read your mind.
"Hm." Matt lowered his gaze to the little puddles on the kitchen tile. His dirty-blonde hair had fallen into his eyes. He swept it back with a jerk of his head as he looked up at me. "Tell me when you find her. She needs to make a supply run, and you're going to supervise."
"What?" I said indignantly. I set down the last egg in the fridge, closed the door. "Why? I'm not her babysitter."
"You are, actually." Matt's voice took on the hard tone he got when he meant business. And Matt always meant business. "No one else is going to do it. Besides." He had the faintest of grins on his face. It didn't meet his eyes. "You're out of a job, remember? Your pansy-ass was supposed to watch the house, and you couldn't even do that. So now you're going to make sure it's fixed."
"Man, come on! She's so annoying!"
I blinked where I might otherwise have goggled. "Why? Because she's a b-" I faltered under Matt's glare. "Because she's rude."
" 'Because she's rude!' " My cousin Tommy-he was adopted into the family, as he was black-swaggered into the kitchen with a broad, blinding white grin on his face. I really liked Tommy. He was a funny guy. Except for now. "Haha, you sound like a pansy-ass, Luke."
"That's what I told him," Matt said, smirking a little.
Danny entered behind Tommy, a half-eaten apple in his hands. "You know what I think? I think he has the hots for her."
Tommy's laugh was big and booming, much like the rest of his 300 pound self. "Is little Lucas having his first 'aduwlt feewlings'?"
I scowled, shoving Tommy's hand off me when it landed on my shoulder. "Shut up."
Tommy sobered a little as he reached for a banana. He sat down and was peeling it when he said, "Come on, man, you know we're just giving you a hard time. You still sore for that Hayley chick?"
Hayley Maul was my ex-girlfriend. I'd really cared for her, but unfortunatly she hadn't returned the feelings, as I had found out she'd cheated on me with my former friend Garrett. Jerks.
"No," I said honestly. "I'm over her. And I do not have the hots for Miss. Destruction."
"Why not?" Danny chuckled as he sat backwards in the chair closest to Tommy. "She's definately easy on the eyes."
"Yeah man," Tommy said. "I think even I might have the hots for Princess."
Danny kicked one of Tommy's chair legs with the toe of his steel boots. "That's gross, dude. You're like a decade older than her."
"I checked up on her," Matt said. "She's seventeen."
"Hah." Tommy lightly slapped Danny's arm with the back of his beefy hand. "Nine years. Not ten."
"Well she's the perfect age for Luke here," Danny gave me a wicked grin. I rolled my eyes and turned, grabbing myself a peach. "They're both at the ripe age of 'striving for adulthood.' "
Tommy sniggered. "Which really means they're both just striving for-"
"Enough," Matt interjected. He looked at me and said sharply, "Go find her, and tell her to get her checkbook ready."
"Where are they going?" Tommy asked as he tossed his banana peel into the open trashcan sitting beside the fridge.
"Princess is going to buy us some more wood and paint." Matt gestured at me. "Get a move on."
I was grinding my teeth in anger as I hunted down Sadie. I found her kneeling at the hole in the front of the house, trying to reach the paintbrush into a little jinch in the side of the wood. She glanced up at me, returned her attention to the paintbrush after her lips pursed in distaste. "What do you want?"
"Get up. We're going to a couple stores. And you're buying."
She stood up, her mouth falling open in outrage. "You're out of your freaking mind if you think I'm-"
I scowled down at her. "Orders from Matt."
She fell silent. She looked furious. Finally, she clenched her puny girl fists and spat, "Fine. You better not stain my car with your filth, though."
I gave her an innocent smile. "Again I repeat: screw you, Princess."
She upturned her nose. "And again I repeat: you would."