Unwillingly Yours(3)

By: Marian Tee & Lourdes Marcelo



Marcy took a long drag from her cigarette. “Why am I friends with you? I just don’t understand why. I’ve tried and I’ve tried to be the bad influence everyone thinks I am but I’m not! You’re un-influenceable!”

“That’s not even a word.”

“And you’re still not letting me influence you,” Marcy muttered.

“Trust me,” Jaike murmured with a twist of her lips, the irony of her friend’s words something only she could enjoy. “You don’t need to influence me. I’ve got my bad side, too.”

Marcy threw her cigarette butt into the trash bin. “Yeah, yeah, so bad you can’t even make yourself skip classes if you’re not on your deathbed.” Arranging the strap of her bag around her wrist, she asked, “Why not come with me to the party?”

“No, thank you.” She didn’t even have to think about her answer. She hated it that much.

“You’ll enjoy yourself, I promise,” Marcy wheedled.

“Nope.”

“Please?”

“Marcy---”

“We’ll just stay for, like, thirty minutes, max! Please?” Marcy batted her eyelashes at Jaike, and even she wasn’t immune to the pitiful expression that her friend had perfected over the years. Maybe she should practice it herself. Maybe getting goo-goo eyed at Angelo could reform his un-boyfriend-like ways.

She answered with a sigh, “I don’t think it’s a good idea. Angelo doesn’t like it---”

Marcy’s expression became steely. “Now I’m not taking no for an answer.” She started dragging Jaike with her. “We are going whether you like it or not, and if you turn me down now we are not going to be friends again.”

“What are you, twelve?”

“No. I’m a hot 21 year old with a twelve-year-old mind.”

Jaike shook her head, knowing it was pointless to argue when Marcy had that look on her face. “At least promise me you won’t leave me alone like the last time.”

“I just wanted you to mingle.”

“Marcy, if you’re going to leave me again---”

Marcy caught Jaike’s arm just as she turned around to go back to the dorm. “Okay, fine! I’m not going to leave you alone this time.” She cast an eye on Jaike’s appearance, her mouth turning down.

Jaike glanced down at her clothes. Pink buttoned-up blouse, loose slacks, and slacks. “This is fine enough. I don’t want to go back just to change.”

Without warning, Marcy pulled Jaike’s ponytail off, unleashing her long dark brown hair on her shoulders, the rest of it tumbling down her back in thick waves.

“Marcy!”

But Marcy was busy fluffing Jaike’s hair, the way her friend liked to do with her own. “There,” she said with satisfaction. “That’s better. You still look like a nerd but at least you look like a nerd who’s trying to fit in.”

Jaike snorted.

Marcy looked grossed out. “Stop that, you know I hate---”

She grinned – then snorted again.

“Sheesh! Who’s the 12-year-old now? I can’t believe the uni’s given you their top scholarship.” Marcy continued with her complaints all the way to Eric’s pad.

“Don’t yawn,” Marcy ordered as she pressed the buzzer.

Jaike snapped her mouth shut just as a redheaded guy she didn’t know opened the door. His face brightened at the sight of Marcy’s smile and he immediately stepped to the side to let them in.

The walls’ varnished wood paneling made the living room appear more spacious, and the cream and leather overtones lent it an elegant taste. Or at least it was should have looked elegant if there weren’t beer bottles and used paper plates scattered all over the room. The floor was a mess, the carpeted tiles stained by vomit and heaven knew what else. Jaike’s OC tendencies for cleanliness kicked in, her body feeling itchy all over.

“Yo, Marcy!”

“Looking good, girl!”

There were more of that for Marcy as they made their way further in, stepping over bodies of those who had passed out on the floor and squeezing past couples making out.

Wolf whistles followed them as they reached the table where the beer cans were stacked next to opened boxes of pizza. Marcy didn’t bat an eyelash at the adulation, taking it all as her due. No one seemed to notice her beside Marcy, but Jaike didn’t mind it at all.

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