The next morning sucks. Amber and Dennis are arguing. I cover my head with a pillow, but it still doesn’t block them out. To top it off, she has the heat cranked up so high that I’m sweating. I get up and turn down the heater. Hiding under the blankets doesn’t work when the room is 150 degrees.
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“Don’t touch that!” Amber snaps at me. “It’s freezing in here.”
“I’m melting, Amber. Leave it off for a while.” I sound reasonable, but she makes a face at me. As soon as I walk away, Amber turns the thing back on.
She turns her anger on me. “You’re such a bitch, Avery. You can’t do whatever you want, whenever you want. I live here too!” Amber is seething, like she’s justified. Dennis watches her, but his eyes flick to me when I explode.
I round on her, growling, with my hands balled into fists at my sides. “Are you fucking insane? I never get to do what I want! You’re here all the time, you lock the door, you block me out of my own goddamn room, you have sex on my bed when I’m not here, your boyfriends use my blankets to clean up after they stick their dick in your nasty self! If anyone’s a bitch, it’s you!” Amber is staring at me, her eyes becoming glossy like she’s going to cry. I don’t care. I so don’t care.
“You’re so mean, Avery,” Amber sobs and turns to Dennis, who holds her in his arms loosely.
Dennis listened to my little rant. It’s quiet for a second before he asks her, “What did she mean, boyfriends?” He emphasizes the plural part of the word. “I thought we were exclusive, Amber? Have you been fucking other guys?” He pulls her away and shouts in her face.
I’m so angry. I grab my clothes and run out the door. As it slams behind me, I hear Amber sobbing, saying nasty stuff about me, denying that she was with anyone else. I don’t know why he would care. Dennis screws any girl that lifts her skirt. Enraged, I walk down to Mel’s and knock. It’s still early.
The door creaks open and she looks at me with bleary eyes, “Awh, hell. You want me to go punch Tramperella in the face? Cuz I’ll be all over that piece of trash. You just say the word. I could hear you guys screaming from here.” Mel yawns the last part and glances down the hall. When I don’t answer, she blinks hard and pushes past me. “I’m gonna go all ninja on her white ass. You come on and watch.”
I grab Mel’s arm and stop her. “Maybe later.” Mel looks at me and then back down the hall. I coax her. “Let me use your shower and I’ll take you out for breakfast.”
Mel gives me a look that’s distinctly Mel. It’s all attitude. “I want chocolate chip pancakes, and not that shit the diner serves. Are we talking IHOP?”
I laugh. “Yeah, if that’s what it takes.