Pucked Page 66

Alex is either oblivious to the estrogen landmine we’ve dropped into, or he’s looking for a way to save me, because he introduces me to his father. Holy vowel sounds. Alex may have his mother’s eyes and hair color, but he has his dad’s looks. Mr. Waters’ is pulling a hard-core silver fox. His eyes are a stunning shade of blue. This family has been blessed with amazing eye genes. And everything else. His choice of clothing is something else. He’s sporting a pair of worn jeans and a white button-down. The top three buttons are undone, exposing a band T-shirt. He’s also wearing Birkenstocks—with socks.

He leans in so he doesn’t have to yell. “Don’t mind Daisy. She thinks she needs to know what Alex had for breakfast. She doesn’t like to be left out.” He winks and straightens. “I can see why he might be trying to keep you all to himself. You look feisty enough to keep him in line, which he seems to need after the stunt he pulled tonight. Fighting is for rookies, son.”

I hold in my sigh of relief, glad he’s not referring to the locker room.

Alex’s father is much warmer than his mother. His name is Robert, but he goes by Robbie. He’s all chilled-out and relaxed. He slings an arm over Daisy’s shoulder, and she rests her rock-hard hair on his chest. She doesn’t look like she wants to kill me anymore, maybe just maim me.

As Robbie asks me questions about how I met Alex, a girl closer to my age comes sauntering up to the bar with a fruity drink in her hand. She throws her arms around Alex’s neck.

My first inclination is to grab her by the hair, but I recognize her from the photos last week. She’s Alex’s sister. I have nothing to be jealous of. Apart from the fact that she’s all legs and has long, flowing sandy blonde hair. Damn her and her near perfection. She’s wearing distressed jeans and a T-shirt that says “100% Recycled Material.” She’s also sporting Birkenstocks with rainbow toe-socks. Alex’s sister is a certified hippie. She and her father are two peas in a pod.

“The amaretto sours are best!” she says to no one in particular.

Daisy looks at one of her hot pink nails. “Don’t get drunk and make a fool out of yourself.”

Alex’s sister either ignores Daisy or doesn’t hear her as she chugs the rest of her drink and finally notices me. “Oh my God, you’re the make out girl!” Her shriek is so loud all conversation around us stops. “You’re even prettier in real life! I can totally see why Alex stuck his tongue down your throat.”

I want to run away. I want to pretend this isn’t happening. Daisy’s confused expression tells me she hasn’t seen the photos of me and Alex making out. I can’t imagine how since they’re everywhere. Robbie’s cheeks flush and his ears go red. Alex’s father must have seen the pictures of me playing tonsil hockey with his son. That’s just wrong.

“Alex, not again!” Daisy exclaims with her hands on her hips. “When are you going to learn?”

As Daisy dives into a lecture about appropriate affection in public, Alex becomes more and more like a little boy being chastised. His shoulders hunch and he nods, apologizing repeatedly. It’s appalling. It’s then I understand his mother is in denial about her son being a player.

I’m suddenly very, very interested in the workings of the Waters family. It’s like watching a social experiment gone awry. I feel much less disturbed by my own mother’s behavior as I observe the interaction between Alex, Daisy, and the rest of his family.

“You know how the media twists things around. I was just kissing her goodnight,” Alex says.

“With tongue,” Sunny replies, batting her blonde lashes.

“Sunny!” Daisy gives her a disapproving look.

“I wasn’t the one tonguing someone else’s mouth for the whole world to see,” Sunny replies.

“Can we not talk about this right now?” Alex asks, shifting uncomfortably.

“Vi! There you are.”

Buck worms his way into the group, inadvertently saving us from further interrogation. Well, worm probably isn’t the right word. He’s too large to be able to worm into anything, so he barrels his yeti ass into the group and says hello to Alex’s parents. He even calls them Mr. and Mrs. Waters. Daisy giggles and tells him to call her by her first name. It’s reminiscent of my mom.

Then Buck introduces himself to Alex’s little sister. I have yet to be formally introduced to her; the focus having been on Alex sticking his tongue down my throat in widely-publicized pictures. Her name is Sunshine. She goes by Sunny. Sunshine and Daisy. Violet and Skye. I see a theme here. Alex is lucky his name wasn’t Woody, or Bark.

“You two could be sisters,” Buck says to Daisy as he kisses the back of Sunny’s hand.

Sunny and Daisy giggle. Alex looks like he’s going to have a coronary. Robbie is irritated and suspicious, glaring at Buck. Rightly so. I’m sure if he’s seen the pictures of Alex and me, he’s seen the ones of Buck. I hope he has, and more than that, I hope he cares. Buck is in full hockey-whore-wooing mode.

Sunny puts her hand on Buck’s arm. “You have such a strong aura.”

“I just use Axe after I shower,” Bucks says. “It’s not too much, is it?”

“It’s great.”

“Can I get you something to drink?”

I watch in horror as Buck threads his arm through hers and guides her to an open spot at the bar, and her family allows it to happen. What I want to tell Sunny is Buck’s strong aura is a result of his VD, or maybe the vast quantity of body hair he sports makes it look like he has an aura when he’s really masquerading as a Sasquatch.

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