Chapter 8Mature

Even though the four of them were buzzed on soda instead of alcohol, the general atmosphere was so close to a party that Alex was able to forget about trying to hide his scars from his friends. After Nathan was done, he was next, leaving Bailey to find company with his friend.

Stepping in front of the sensor, the scents of Mountain Dew and Coke heavy in the air, Alex searched out one of the songs that had caught his ear last time. Since he had some fresh practice under his belt, he set the difficulty to the hardest and stretched his back muscles a bit.

“Good luck, man.” Nathan said. “Don’t get your legs twisted.”

“Phht. Just watch me.” Alex replied in jest.

The song started off with a long set of up and down body routines, and as it went on, Alex grew more and more absorbed in what was in front of him. Even thought they were all just having a good time, he was going to make Marcus eat his words from their first time.

As the song wound down towards the final few routines, trying to remember each one that was coming, Alex followed the cards on screen as best he could, lifting and dropping his arms to match the movements. He was still not doing as well as he’d hoped, but it was much better than last time when he was flailing for less. Seeing the last card coming, he followed the last side-to-side movements and ended with his left arm flying back and his right in front of his face, earning him a flawless finish.

“Whew. That was fun.” Alex said, wiping the sweat from his face. “Catherine, I think you’re up.” Letting her take the player spot, Alex sat down next to Bailey and Nathan, whom he was now noticing was looking a bit worried. “Something wrong?”

“No, but when did you get those scars on your arm?”

Alex’s pulse jumped when he heard that. When had he seen them? For a few seconds, he thought to say it was nothing, but couldn’t follow through on it. “I got those a while back.” Pulling his sleeve up a bit, Nathan winced at the healing job.

“Geez, man. Are those teeth marks?” His voice was barely carrying under the loud music from the game.

Alex nodded. The cat was out of the bag. “Yeah.” Anticipating his friend’s next question, he continued. “And no, I never told Dad about it. I was too scared about going to the hospital.”

“And you’d rather risk infection from a bite?”

“Whoa.” Catherine’s voice caught them both by surprise before she paused the game and the house became mostly silent again. “What happened?”

The End

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