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Chapter Three

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Did he say the first door from the hallway my room is in? Or the second? I think it was the second. I walk up to the second bedroom along the balcony and knock on the door.

"Come in," a voice says. I push open the door and see Ryder pulling a shirt over him.

"Oh! Sorry." He spins around, apparently not expecting it to be me.

"Oh, hey Annie," he says, walking over to me.

"Hey. I'm guessing this isn't Tyler's room." He chuckles and shakes his head.

"His is the first door," he says. I nod and step out of his room. I knew it! Well, actually I didn't, but I thought it was.

"Okay, thanks!"

He nods and leans against his doorframe. I knock on the first door and am greeted by Tyler.

"Hey Annie, what's up?" he asks, allowing me into his room.

"Thought I'd just see what your room looks like." I look around the room and laugh. Typical boy room. Blue walls, posters of football players and music he likes all over the wall. And it's super messy in here. Like, I think that sock is going to attack at any second.

"Sorry it's such a mess," he says with a laugh, looking at my terrified face.

"Mhm, right," I joke and take a seat on his bed. It's not easy to joke right now, but they don't know what's going on, so I'm going to fake it as best as I can. "So, tell me a little bit about you and your family."

"Okay, well what do you want to know?" he asks, taking a seat next to me.

"Who's the oldest?"

"That'd be Nick," he says. "He's in college, but he still lives here when he's on break and stuff."

"And then the next would be Ryder, right?" He nods and picks up a baseball from the ground. He lays back and starts to toss it in the air.

"Yeah. He's quarterback of the football team, total player, but he's managed to keep an on-again-off-again relationship for about a year," he explains.

"Let me guess, head cheerleader?" I guess. He chuckles and shakes his head.

"Our school doesn't do cheerleading. But she's the star of the soccer team."

"Your school doesn't do cheerleading?" What the hell?

"Nope, why?" he asks, glancing at me.

"That's my sport." He frowns and sits up.

"We have a dance team," he says, like that makes it all better. It does in some ways, but dance and cheerleading aren't as similar as people think they are.

"Does this city have an athletics club?"

"Yeah, I mean, probably," he says with a shrug. "We can find one."

"Sweet. Hopefully it has a cheer team."

"Hey, Ty?" a voice says, stepping into the room. I look up to see Ryder standing there, shirtless. Didn't he just pull on a shirt? "Oh, hey Annie."

"What's up?" Tyler asks, walking over to his brother. They whisper something, both of them glancing at me once in a while. Tyler sighs but nods finally. "I have to go, Annie. I'll see you in a bit."

"Oh, okay." I give him a hug, surprising us both, and I walk out of the room.

"So, Annie," Ryder says, walking next to me. "What brings you to California?"

"My, um, p-parent's had busy lives and since we're underage they sent us here." How the hell did I come up with that so easily?

"Oh, that sucks," he says. I nod and head towards the stairs. "Where are you going?"

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