Havoc:Mayhem Series #4By: Jamie Shaw
“Why?” When Mike speaks, it strikes me how well his voice suits him. It sounds like it belongs to someone with big brown eyes, thick brown hair, and sculpted arms. He’s hotter than Adam, even if Danica can’t see it, and I find myself feeling irritated—maybe because someone like him would love someone like Danica, maybe because someone like Danica would never love him as much, maybe because I’m tired and it’s freaking cold and I smell like someone else’s BO and my favorite hoodie in the world has a freaking stain on the sleeve and I have to go home tonight with the bitch who put it there.
“Yeah, Dani, why?”
She glares over her shoulder at the sound of her childhood nickname—the one that started getting under her skin when she decided it was too boyish—and I try not to stare down at my shoes.
Since we moved in together over the summer, I’ve held my tongue. I’ve been her housemaid, her personal chef, her babysitter, and her doormat. It’s the price I’ve had to pay for the roof her family puts over our heads and the tuition they pay on my behalf. But three hours of waiting in line tonight, followed by five hours of no personal space and then two more hours of ass freezing, has severely compromised my filter. Which is a dangerous, dangerous thing.
I’m thankful when she lets my comment go and instead gives her attention back to Mike. “Can we talk?”
His expression is unreadable as he stares at her. I look for the guy who was in love with her, the one who put flowers in her locker. I look for the rock star I saw onstage tonight, the one who could have had any girl he wanted. I look for the dreamer, the one who knew better than to let Danica hold him back.
But they’re all locked behind guarded brown eyes, and I stop looking for them when Mike says, “Sure,” and leads Danica toward the bus.
“Isn’t it past your bedtime?” I taunt as I creep up on an enemy stronghold with a small but coveted weapon in my hand—a satellite phone linked to Command.
“Your mom’s too busy sucking my dick for me to go to bed,” the prepubescent voice in my headphones quips, and a bunch of other little boys laugh belligerently while a smile sneaks onto my face.
My thumbs move over the game controller in my hand, and with one final push of a button, an ungodly loud alarm begins to sound in the game.
“OH MY GOD,” the first boy screams over the wailing alarm. The screen is flashing red with the sound, and I try to smack-talk through my laughter as the rest of the boys descend into panic.
“What’s that you were saying about my mom?”
“HOW THE HELL DID YOU GET FUCKING AIR SUPPORT!” another boy yells, and on the TV screen in front of me, I watch as a group of camouflaged soldiers flee the distant building.
“Too late, newbs!” I shout as the whoosh of an Apache helicopter nears. A second later, deafening gunfire begins cutting down everyone in front of me, and the cries of little boys on the other end of my headphones warms my cruel, unmerciful heart.
I’m laughing hysterically as they shout a cacophony of curse words and accusations of me being a hacker, when the air inside the tour bus changes and I lift my eyes to see its door opening.
I’ve been alone on the bus for hours now. The first to leave were Mike and Danica, when she ran a finger over his arm and asked if they could talk in private. I guessed she was tired of the looks everyone was giving her, since it was obvious Mike’s band and its entourage all hate her, but I doubted that what she had on her mind was “talking.” I’m not sure if seeing Mike up close changed something for her, or if she’s simply a very talented actress, but once we were all on the bus together, she barely paid Adam, Shawn, or Joel another glance. And the heat she threw at Mike must have worked, because he took her to a different bus in the parking lot, and they haven’t been seen or heard from since.
I passed the time by playing war games with Adam’s girlfriend, Rowan, on a flat-screen TV in the main sitting area, until two by two, everyone left to get some sleep. I assured them I’d be fine on my own while I waited for Danica, and I lost track of time as I slayed preteens who had no idea what they were in for.