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This had been such a bad idea. Joseph rushed alongside Vannah and she was actually grateful for his clinginess now. She could use a second pair of eyes.
“How far could she have gone?” Swinging the door open to one of the many bedrooms in the house, Vannah gasped when she saw the half-naked couple on the bed. “Sorry.”
As awkward as the moment was, Vannah still glanced around in case Xochitl was passed out anywhere in the room. The girl hadn’t been kidding when she said she was a lightweight. Not that Vannah wasn’t also. She’d only ever been buzzed once before in her life. But somehow her friend went from mildly buzzed like Vannah to falling down drunk in a matter of a couple of hours. Vannah had left her for two minutes to go find a bottled water and she’d disappeared. Clarissa hadn’t been able to make it tonight and Silvia’s sister got them the booze, but after hooking up with her ex, Silvia had taken off with him and they’d been on their own for the rest of the night.
Closing the door, Vannah trudged ahead on a mission. With her heart at her throat, her parents’ warnings loomed in the air, about how dangerous it was to get drunk at these college parties. She was only grateful now that she hadn’t drank nearly as fast as her nervous friend. Whatever buzz Vannah had begun to get, was long gone now that she was growing more and more panicked with every passing minute that she couldn’t find her friend.
“Xochitl!” She called out as she neared the stairwell in case she was downstairs somewhere searching for Vannah as well.
“Is that the wasted girl you were with earlier?”
Vannah’s eyes zoomed in on the girl who was doing the asking downstairs. “Yes! Have you seen her?”
“She just left with some guy.”
Remembering the pushy guy who’d been trying to throw the moves on Xochitl earlier, Vannah turned to Joseph wide eyed. “Oh my God.” Turning back to the girl downstairs who’d gone back to dancing, Vannah rushed down the stairs “Excuse me!” She pushed her way through the crowd. “Excuse me.” The girl turned to her again barely slowing the hip swaying. “What guy? Which way did she go?”
“Some horndog who was all over her,” the girl said loudly over the blaring music. “He took her that way.” She pointed at the front door. “It was so obvious he wanted in her pants bad. But if you hurry you might catch them.”
Without even thanking her, Vannah rushed toward the door even more glad that Joseph was still sticking with her. Earlier she’d been annoyed by his overly eagerness. Now she might need him if this horndog Xochitl left with got confrontational.
Blasting through the front door, Vannah jerked her neck in every direction of the crowded front yard and sidewalks. “Hey!” She yelled when she saw them. The guy was helping her very wobbly friend into a car and Vannah practically sprinted toward them, glad she was so used to wearing such high heels. “Hey, you! Where do you think you’re taking my—”
Nearly choking when the guy turned to her and she saw who it was, she was rendered speechless.
“Vannah I’ve been looking all over for you.”
Her drunk friend’s slurred words pulled Vannah out of her stupor as she turned to respond to her. “I’ve been looking all over for you.”
Refusing to look at Byron because the girl’s comments about the horndog all over Xochitl were suddenly not just maddening anymore. The very thought was doing something else to her now. A part of her felt incredibly disgusted and disappointed, but another part felt unbelievably jealous. Only she’d die before she’d let this jerk, she’d obsessed so much over and clearly had been way off about, notice. Instead, she kept her eyes on Xochitl. “Where are you going?”
Hiccupping loudly, Xochitl giggled. “We were- hiccup! – going to go park – hiccup! – and – hiccup!” Covering her mouth with one hand, even as Byron held her by her elbow, Xochitl pinched her nose with the other and inhaled deeply holding her breath.
“We were just gonna—”
“I don’t need to know what else you were planning on doing.” The harshness of her words toward Byron surprised Vannah, but she knew it wasn’t just because he’d been planning on taking advantage of her drunk friend. “Whatever it was, it’s not happening now.” Vannah hurried to help Xochitl out of the car again, refusing to even look at him.
“Wait I wasn’t planning on—”
“Can’t you see she’s completely wasted?”
“Yeah, that’s why—”
“Oh, I bet that’s why,” she retorted finally turning to look up at him but then quickly turned to Joseph because she could hardly stand to look in those hardened, yet infuriatingly sexy eyes for even another second.
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