Here’s another sneak peak of Descent! This #TeaserTuesday is all about the girls. Ollie, Alexis, and Keren are just getting to know each other and it’s all going down in the most peculiar place.
Thanks to experiencing a high school locker room, I’m familiar with community bathroom etiquette. I’ve mastered the art of modesty. I sink into the pool careful to conceal myself and hear a snicker coming from two pools over.
“What now, Alexis?” I huff annoyed. I can’t help but miss an incredibly zen Keren, oblivious to our conversation.
“You’re just so uptight. You should let go a little.” All traces of mockery are gone, and I can tell that Alexis is actually trying to be nice.
Then as if rising out of the steam, Keren interjects, “Both of you must relax.”
Alexis and I shrug and look back at our respective pools. Then Alexis, in her typical way, breaks the silence. “Can I ask you a question?” She blurts.
“You just did,” Keren answers in a language I speak fluently. Sarcasm. I look over to her, and a smile stretches across her face. “Do you mean to inquire about something in particular?” she asks back.
Alexis grins. She appreciates wit.
“Before I ask, I have to admit that I’m glad to hear a little snark coming out of you. But, I was wondering who you are in the counsel?”
“I am Enoch’s daughter, and Gabriel’s younger, smarter, sister.” Keren grins.
“Where’s your mom? Gabe never mentioned her…”
“Alexis!” I shoot a dark look her way.
“What?” Alexis begins to argue.
“It’s all right.” Keren reassures me. This entire time, not even a ripple appears in her pool. “Our mother passed. She died a few years after I was born.” An awkward pause mingles with the steam in the air. “Might I also inquire about your relationship with each other, and the two men you arrived with?”
“Well, Ollie and I are BFFs.” Alexis answers with a laugh and winks at me. “Mateo and Jesse are brothers that live next door to Ollie. Oh, and Ollie and Mateo used to be best friends, before my brother screwed everything up and I stole her away.”
Keren reacts with a confused look on her face. I wasn’t sure if our lingo was confusing or the message itself. But I knew I had a lot of explaining to do.
“Don’t listen to her. She must’ve cracked her skull when she fell from the surface. I’ve known Alexis for a long time, and I’m rethinking our best friend status at the moment. By the way, that’s what BFF means: best friends forever. As far as Mateo and Jesse are concerned, they’re my next door neighbors.”
“Right. Like that’s all there is to it!” Alexis chips in.
Keren grins to herself at our banter, then I give up the argument and lean back into the warm water. I can feel a constant flow pushing against my lower back, and it massages the tension out of my muscles. There’s no chance it’ll push away all my concerns. It does help me forget some of this bizarro-underground-field-trip I’ve fallen into.
A bell rings, startling me, and I look over to Keren. She slides her white fabric into the water and over her body. Alexis and I mimic her, placing the fabric over ourselves, and then in my peripheral vision I notice someone walk into the room.
No, three someones. I squint to see through the steam, and recognize Gabriel, Mateo, and Jesse.
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