Okay, this is a continuation from the last tease, but this one I feel is a real tease. At least I hope you feel that it is. For those of you who haven't read the other teases, this scene takes place in the cafeteria of Alina Lodge, a facility for troubled and law breaking teenage POPs (Person of Powers). It's starts with Josh, Samantha's best friend, who has just returned to the table after getting something else to eat. Keep in mind that when you see conversation in italics it's Josh and Sam communicating telepathically. Hope you enjoy :-)
"Man, I couldn’t find anything to eat today. Everything either looks over cooked or undercooked or some disgusting combination of both." He tears open several small boxes of cereal and pours them into his bowl. "Anyway, what’s your schedule like for the rest of the day? Mine’s pretty much slam packed. I probably won’t—"
Josh! I realize now what he’s doing, but I don’t understand why. I can just barely make out the heavy metal song he’s playing in his head. It’s one of the strategies we use to help block out thoughts from those who can read them—from people like me.
"Turn that lame ass song off. Why are you avoiding my question?"
"The 411 on Miss Newbie? Her powers? Reason for being here? Hellooo."
From the corner of my eye, I notice that Dumbo is staring in our direction. I narrow my eyes. "Mind your Goddamn business Sarah or I’ll give you something to listen to," I utter under my breath.
She nervously turns away and makes conversation with some of the kids at her table. My eyes shoot back to Josh. I’m waiting for an answer. He’s shifting in his chair, dunking his cereal in the milk with his spoon.
Something is up.
Damn it, Josh. What the hell?
After a few seconds he sighs, tosses his spoon into the bowl and puts his hands in the air.
Fine. You’ll find out eventually anyway.
Like the instant silence one hears after a needle’s been dramatically scratched across a record, my mind shuts off all background noise, ready to absorb everything he’s about to say.
My left eyebrow flies up. I’m intrigued. It’s gotta be good.
"She snuck out of her house, stole a car, some clothes from some boutique store, money from a couple ATM machines, and crashed a party at an art gallery in Soho with a couple of friends."
I pull my head back and rumple my brows. "Ohhhkay…and you were hesitant to tell me this, because?"
"Because I know you and the way your mind thinks."
Confused and annoyed, I throw my arms across my chest. "You don’t know how my mind thinks…all the time."
He snorts, his right cheek pulling his mouth into a side smile. "Sam, I know how your mind thinks better than you know how your mind thinks. I’m one step ahead of you girl."
Still feeling perturbed and trying to take in what he just said, the neurons in my brain suddenly fire wildly. Turning my head to the side, eyes locked on his, I smile and bite into my lip.
"What are her powers, Josh?"
His eyes stare into mine, frozen for several seconds, before he takes a deep breath, rolls his eyes and shakes his head. Leaning back in his chair, he lounges his arm across the top of the chair next to him and runs his hand back and forth across the top of his freshly buzzed hair. "She’s…technopathic."
For a moment it doesn’t register. My memory goes into search mode for the definition. Technopathic? Technopathic? Techno—Oh…my God.
With my thumbnail in my mouth and my teeth searching frantically for a piece of nail, my mind starts flying all over the place. I can’t seem to organize my thoughts. So many things, so many connections, are zinging through it at the same time.
"Don’t you give me that innocent what face. I know exactly where your thoughts have gone." You’ve been talking about it for weeks.
"I gotta go." I pick up my tray and head for the garbage.
Don’t do it Sam. You’re only asking for trouble.
I don’t have to look back to see the concern on his face.
I’ll talk to you later, I say.
After dumping my tray I walk straight up the stairs to the main floor bulletin board with everyone’s posted schedule.
Hmm…no class for another hour and she’s not having lunch in the cafeteria. I feel myself grin uncontrollably as my teeth sink into my lower lip.
Time to make friends with the new girl.