Tasha continued running, with the guy in the hoodie running behind her. He was at an advantage as he was faster and almost catching up with her. He stretched out his hand, catching Tasha by the arm and pulling her roughly into himself. Tasha, on the other hand, tried freeing herself from his strong grip, as tears poured down her cheeks. The guy pulled Tasha forcefully from the road, into a dark alley, as the sound of a car zooming off was heard.
“Please don’t hurt me please” she cried out without looking up, still struggling to free her arm and continue running.
The guy reached for the handbag, hanging on her shoulders, as he pulled it off her, causing Tasha to cry more.
“Let me go!!” She cried, hitting me continuously on his chest, trying to free herself
“Ouch!” Escaped the lips of the guy as he looked down at the crying girl in front of him but Tasha was relentless in her efforts of getting rid of this bully, as she bit his hand, causing the guy’s firm grip to loosen, taking that as an opportunity, she ran away from him.
“Natasha!” He screamed behind her as she stopped on her tracks, recognizing the voice immediately. She turned swiftly, as her eyes pierced through the darkness, trying to confirm if what she heard was true but the darkness overwhelmed her vision as she thought it wise to continue running.
“Natasha stop!!” He yelled again, as he saw her head turn again. This time, Tasha stood fixed to a spot as her lips quivered at the thought.
“Jason!” She called out softly
“Yes, Tasha” he replied, taking strides towards her, as she stood, unmoved. He soon stood in front of her, removing his hoodie, as Tasha hugged him, tears flowing from her eyes down her cheeks.
“Jason!” I called out softly, hoping and praying it was really him and not some monster.
“Yes Tasha” I heard his calm voice as i threw myself into his arms. I was overjoyed as i couldn’t help but cry in his arms.
But wait? Why was i in his arms crying? He was the jerk chasing me few minutes ago. Why was Jason chasing me in the first place?
Quickly, i disengaged from the hug, wiping my eyes and face with the back of my hand, snatching my bag from his shoulder, i glared at him, before walking away from him headed towards the light.
“Hey wait up” i heard his voice, then felt his strong grip on my arm as he pulled me once again, facing him this time. I was lost in his beautiful eyes, his handsome face, his soft, full and inviting lips; I couldn’t help but drool over this god of beauty before me.
“What are you doing Jason?” i managed to speak as his grip loosened on my arm
“Am sorry Tasha, for scaring you like that, of course. It wasn’t intentional. Am trying to avoid my parent’s surveillance team around this area; if they recognize me, investigations are going to kick start immediately and i wouldn’t want to put you and your family in any form of ‘Smith’s drama’, that’s why i am wearing a hoodie and avoiding the light”
“That’s why you were chasing me, like you were going to kill me?”
Jason laughed lightly, obviously finding what i had just said to be funny or some kind of joke.
“I saw you reach for your phone, didn’t want you calling the police on me, so i tried stopping you, then you started running and i called after you but i guess you were too into the race to hear my voice”
“What are you doing here?”
“Can’t i come to see you again?” He asked with a smile
“Really!?” My voice and face lit up with excitement and blush
“Of course. Aren’t you my friend again?”
Did he just say friends? I don’t want to be your friend Jason Smith. I am not your friend. Why can’t you get that into your head?
“Of course” i replied softly
“Have you heard from Mellisa? Do you happen to know if she’s fine? Is she in some sort of trouble or what?”
We can’t even have a conversation without the Mel topic or issue coming up, its always going to be about her. So annoying! But i have to continue being the good girl that Jason sees me as, if i ever wish to stand a chance with him.
“Yes. I have talked with Mel and she’s fine” i replied absentmindedly
“Are you sure?” He pressed on
My lips were about saying yes when the image of Mrs Bradson flashed through my mind. I couldn’t do this, but Mel asked me not to tell Jason anything that she was going to handle things herself but what exactly can she really do? Its obvious Mrs Bradson needs Jason’s help, even if Mel doesn’t desire it. What can i do now? Is making Jason hate Mellisa and be mine more important right now to Mrs Bradson’s life? Definitely not! I have to do the right thing now.
“Tasha!!” I heard Jason’s voice, as I jolted out of my world of thoughts, gazing at him
“Yes!” I replied “did you say something?” I asked as he looked at me with those sexy eyes of his.
“You kinda zoomed out on me two minutes ago. Is Mel safe? Please tell me Tasha” he said pleadingly
I sighed deeply.
“Walk me home, its already late now. I’ll tell you as we walk”
He nodded obediently, putting the hoodie over his head, as he held my hand in his, the feeling was out of this world; so comforting and safe. We started our walk to my house.
“Mel is not one hundred percent fine. She asked me not to tell you this but i can’t keep it a secret from you, for the sake of the life in danger”
“Life in danger? Is Mel pregnant?” He asked, shock can be felt in his voice
“Hell No!” I replied with a light chuckle “its her mum actually”
“Her mum? What about her mum? Wait, I thought she was an orphan?”
“Yea, she is actually. Her adoptive mum is the one she regards as mum right now, no one else”
Jason nodded to show he was following “I see. So what’s wrong with her?”
“She’s very sick. She needs an emergency kidney transplant and according to doctors, her chances of survival reduces with each passing day”
“What is Mel doing about it? I mean her family?”
“Her dad travelled to meet up with family members to try raising the money”
“And how much are we talking here?”
“About a million dollars” i replied sadly
By this time, my house was already in sight, as i saw a woman seated on the porch; that’s my mum for sure. I checked my phone to see seven missed calls from my mum; the time was 8pm already.
“Uhmm i have to go now Jason. My mum is already waiting for me and am very sure she must be worried because i did not come back on time”
I saw her walk away from me, half running. She soon stood in front of a much older woman, who i assumed to be her mum. An inaudible conversation was going on between them, which lasted for about three to five minutes before i saw them hug. Disengaging from the hug, they both walked into the house.
I turned back and headed home but i just couldn’t get the fact that Mel needed my help out of my head. But why wouldn’t she tell me? Is it that she doesn’t trust me or what? Should i ignore it and not help her?
Of course not! I would have to help her and her family out of this mess.
“Destiny can never be cheated.
Allowing her fall in love with you would eventually lead to her death.
She died for you before. Don’t allow her do it again” i heard Nnana’ voice in my head, it was so loud as if she were standing besides me, yelling into my ears.
What should i do? Continue being the monster and make Mellisa hate me more or be the nice person for the second time? Am as confused as can be.
I spent the night besides my mum in the hospital, watching her sleep in discomfort. I tried getting through to my dad but he just wouldn’t pick my calls, which got me a bit worried. I just hope he’s alright wherever he is.
‘I TRIED REACHING DAD BUT I COULDN’T. PLEASE CHECK UP ON HIM TO KNOW IF HE’S OKAY. SEE YOU IN SCHOOL” I texted Alicia on Facebook, since she was online and waited for her reply but it never came, although she read it. I logged out and got ready for school, stepped out to buy mum some breakfast, as going home to cook was an impossibility. Mum was struggling with eating as she was loosing appetite on a regular basis, but she did try for my sake and ate a reasonable amount. I left for school immediately she was done eating.
I strolled to the subway station and used it for my transport, since it was faster and cheaper. On getting to school, i saw that everywhere was a bit rowdy as students were in groups of four’s and five’s; what exactly was going on? I ignored them and continued walking down the hall, headed for my class, when I felt their intense gaze on me, some were even pointing their fingers at me, what exactly was going on in this damn school?
“I know her but she couldn’t have possibly done that, i don’t believe it” i heard a student whisper to his group of friends
“Looks can be deceiving most times. Appearances are deceptive, we shouldn’t be fooled” A girl’s voice spoke loud enough to my hearing this time.
“She looks so quiet and innocent” another girl added
At this point in time, i was extremely curious, and decided to confront them.
“What are you guys talking about?” I asked as i stood in front of them
“You can stop the pretense Miss. The whole school already knows” A guy spoke up this time
“Pretense? Already knows what?” I asked, expecting some straight forward answers
“Miss Bradson!” I heard the principal’s voice from behind me. I turned to meet his angry gaze, fear enveloped me immediately. “My office, Now!” He ordered walking away from me as i stood looking lost but the students didn’t stop looking at me. I walked away also, finding my way to the principal’s office.
Knocking gently on the door, i was let in as i stood before the Principal, Vice Principal and the CEO (owner) of the school.
What really was going on?
“So you are the young miss who wants to drag the name of this great school built with lots of sweat, hard work, determination, perseverance and commitment?” I heard the Principal’s angry voice echo around the room.
My voice ran away from me instantly, as i couldn’t form words, i just looked down at my feet.
“What did you hope to achieve from what you have just done?” The Vice Principal spoke more calmly
“With all due respect sirs, i don’t know what am being accused of” i spoke softly, with as much respect as i possibly could
“You don’t know?” the principal said with a scoff “explain this to us, seated here” he said throwing some fliers towards me “explain this rubbish Miss Bradson”
I bent down to pick up the fliers, to have a look at them myself and i was shocked beyond words at what i saw.
On the fliers, were inscribed;
‘MORGAN A FRAUD!!!’
‘CRESCENT HIGH SCHOOL A DISAPPOINTMENT!!!’
‘CRESCENT STANDS NO CHANCE AGAINST DREAMLANDERS!!!’
‘MORGAN AND JEFF, NOT FRIENDS!!! ‘
Just incase you are wondering what all this is about, let me fill you in on some details.
Jefferson also soon as Jeff is the owner of dreamlanders high school and Morgan is the owner of Crescent high school. Jeff and Morgan are friends, or that’s what they made their students believe. To an extent, there had been some friendly rivalry, as to whose school is the best but the fact remains that, both schools are the best in the town and amongst the best in New York city. Annually, there have been interschools competition, conducted from the town level to the state level and the winner school gets recognized in the entire country, big achievement right?
Crescent and dreamlanders have won such competitions over the years, alternatively. Its been rumored openly that both CEOs are at loggerheads because this very year’s competition, is going to be with a twist as the wife of the president of the USA would be in attendance. Winning, could shine the spotlight on the school, making different state owners and government officials bring their children to the school, even to open another branch somewhere else.
Though it was a rumor, but no student was given the right to fight for school supremacy, except through legal means; winning academic and non academic competitions. It was against the rules and any student or students caught or reported vandalizing the name of the school or another school, expulsion is the punishment accompanied with some fines, if it were serious, you can be sued and go to jail if you lose the case.
“Sirs, i know nothing of these” i tried defending myself but my hands were already shaking, my lips quivered, my heart racing; i was too scared to speak or defend myself properly.
“The security said the person was called Miss Bradson. You were seen hanging this placards on the wall of Crescent or are you trying to deny your own name?” The Principal half yelled
Is this the end? Was i going to be expelled? Was i going to leave Dream landers high school? What if i get sued for a crime i know nothing of?
I don’t really hate Mellisa, I just hated the fact that she was mum’s priority, number one on the list, i ought to be first choice as i am the biological child, but mum refused to draw a line between us. At first, having a sibling and a sister was a blessing, my happiness knew no bound but i felt threatened as she was constantly stealing my mum’s love and attention from me.
My friend, Claire, told me of a family she knew, who adopted a daughter and how she stole both parents’ love from the biological children and then disinherited them from their parents’ properties and wealth, and i became scared, scared of loosing my parents forever to that girl.
Fortunately for me, my dad was not fooled by her niceness and good nature, he made me his number one and pampered me but i needed my mum’s more, my hatred for her doubled.
You could say I was just plain jealous but whatever it is, i just desired my mum all to myself.
Seeing mum sick broke my heart into a million pieces and when Mellisa did not come back home from school, i became worried for her. It was not as if i cared or anything, just that Mellisa is a good girl and wouldn’t sleep out, especially now that mum was not too strong. I thought about calling her but what would i say to her. I waited till i couldn’t wait any longer, picking up my phone to call her but her damn phone was switched off.
I felt relieved when I saw her in school but of course i did not walk up to her or show any form of happiness; I just ignored her.
I saw her enter the house, looking tired but i cared less. Hearing her say all those things, sent daggers to my heart. I honestly wasn’t expecting her to get that much confidence and strength to talk back at me; i looked at her with disbelief and shock but she didn’t stop.
I went back to my room, and my mind’s eyes were immediately opened. My jealousy, anger and hatred is the cause of mum’s failing health. If i had studied hard enough and passed the scholarship exams, mum wouldn’t have had to spend money on my school expenses, or if i had settled for the school they picked for me, she would have been more than healthy right now; Guilt was an understatement of what i felt. I heard her knock on the door as she spoke through it before leaving the house.
I needed to change for mum’s sake. Mum needed me right now, I’m her child after all.
The next morning came, as i saw Mel’s message and immediately called my dad who assured me he was fine and would be back in town, two days from now.
I got ready for school, did the chores before leaving the house. On reaching school, i decided to go see Tasha, Mel’s closest friend in school before heading for my own class.
“Is it done?” I heard Isabella’s voice
Everyone who is a student in dreamlanders, knows of Isabella Bradson. She was the Queen of the entire school. But what was she talking about now? Probably one of her innocent victims, i decided to ignore
“Yes of course! Mellisa or whatever her name is, would be out of this school today” i heard her bestie, Gabriella said with a light chuckle, causing me to stop on my tracks, as i peeped through the window.
Isabella wasn’t in the classroom. It was just Gabriella and Jake, with a laptop in front of them, probably making a video call.
“Just stay at home, drink, eat and be merry. Once she comes to school, the party gets started” Jake said whilst pressing his phone.
“Alicia, right?” I heard a voice behind me.
I withdrew from the window immediately, looking over at the owner of the voice.
“Yeah. Tasha right?”
She chuckled “The only one with red hair in the entire school”
I couldn’t help but laugh lightly at her joke, or rather i laughed to clear away the shock and fright she just gave me.
“What are you doing here?” She asked with a smile
“I have a message for Mel, wanted to see if she was already in class but she isn’t. I guess I’ll have to deliver the message later”
“Okay and am so sorry about your mum. Everything is going to be alright okay”
I nodded a response before walking away from her.
Whatever Isabella and her group are planning is just plain bad, i needed to do something quick.
Getting into school, i knew something was amiss immediately, but what exactly? I needed to find out.
“Hey” i greeted a group of girls, i happened to have met on the basketball court, their names was something I didn’t commit to memory.
“Hi Red” the tallest girl answered back enthusiastically
“How you guys doing?”
“Don’t tell me you have not heard the latest update?” One girl said, not ready for formal greetings
“Heard what? Tell me please”
“A final year student, from art class vandalized the name of crescent school and even dreamlanders”
“From my class? Who?”
“I heard her name is Miss Bradson. She glued placards on crescent and threw fliers into the school compound, saying Mr Jeff and Mr Morgan ain’t friends and they stood no chance against us in this year’s competitions”
“I need to be in my class right now. I need to know exactly what is happening” i said hurrying away from them.
Could it be Mellisa? But Mellisa couldn’t possibly do such things, she ain’t that kind of a person. What really was going on?
I saw Alicia peeping through the window into our classroom.
“Alicia, right?” I asked the moment i was standing besides her. She jerked up like a child caught stealing as she looked at me.
“Yeah. Tasha right?” She replied, her voice almost in a whisper. I could see shock in her eyes as i decided to lighten the mood by laughing lightly.
“The only one with red hair in the entire school” i replied with a smile, as she laughed at my ‘supposed joke’
“What are you doing here?” I asked as her laughing died down
“I have a message for Mel, wanted to see if she was already in class but she isn’t. I guess I’ll have to deliver the message later” she said all in one breath, causing me to look at her suspiciously.
“Okay and am so sorry about your mum. Everything is going to be alright okay” i replied as sweetly as i possibly could.
She nodded a response before walking away from me.
I peeped through the window to see Gabriella and Jake seated, facing a laptop screen.
“Okay am counting on you guys’ ability, don’t disappoint me and make sure she’s out of the school today” i heard Isabella’s voice as Gabriella closed the laptop.
I get everything now, Oh! Poor Mel! You are leaving dreamlanders high school today. Am now a step closer to getting my Jason, just can’t wait any longer…