Initiation by Jessica Burkhart Read Free Book Online Page A

Book: Initiation by Jessica Burkhart Read Free Book Online
Authors: Jessica Burkhart
imagine classes w/o u guys.
    Ana: How IS it? Ur roomie? Ur room? BBM us pix.
    Lauren: OK,OK! Will take TONS of pix. J It’s amazing. Whisper loves it, 2, I think. My roomie, Khloe, is so cool. Her horse’s name is Ever. Bay mare w a « . Sooo cute!
    Ana: That’s great, Laur! I’m rlly glad u like Khloe. It would b awful if u guys hated each other.
    Lauren: Def. R u ready for school?
    Ana: OMG, thanks 2 Brielle (I think), I am TOO ready. She came over & even picked out my 1st day clothes.
    Ana: I sketched Bri in action and it came out a giant blur.
    Lauren: LOL.
    Lauren: That’s my ‘AnaArtiste.’
    I referenced her Chatter handle.
    Ana: Has she BBMed u yet? Tay?
    Lauren: Not yet. Prob scrambling 4 school.
    Ana: I’m sure they’ll b in touch soon. We’ll all b thinking about u & missing u!
    Lauren: Same.
    Khloe looked over at my frantic typing. “Old friends?” she asked with a smile.
    â€œYeah,” I said. I returned her smile, but her use of the word “old” made me feel uneasy.
    Lauren: Gotta run, but miss u and ttys!
    Ana: Mwah! Ttyvs!
    Lauren: VVS!
    I locked my phone, shoving it back in my pocket.
    I hadn’t said anything to Ana, but I felt a little down that I hadn’t heard from Brielle or Taylor. I could message them, but I was the one who’d left and I didn’t want to seem like a baby, like I was already homesick. Even though . . . technically . . . I might have been feeling a tiny bit sick. For . . . home-type things. I took a deep breath. They’d write soon.
    They were just as busy as I was. Brielle was probably at the mall—her arms filled with piles of clothes—and Taylor was probably . . . no, definitely . . . in his pool, swimming laps. They weren’t going to disappear just because I’d switched schools.
    â€œHey,” Khloe said, catching me off guard. “Want to go make some tea?”
    Homey relief rushed through me. A cup of honey vanilla chamomile tea is exactly what I need, I thought. The ingredients always calmed me down.
    â€œThat,” I said. “Is the best idea ever.”
    I was beginning to realize—new friends could sometimes make you feel just as good as old ones could.

    THE COMMON ROOM IN HAWTHORNE LOOKED like something out of Charlotte’s Sarah Lawrence catalog.
    A bunch of students were inside, two on a sectional sofa-slash-chaise watching the flat-screen mounted on the pastel purple–painted wall. Others, curled up in recliners, read or texted. The room, which I’d expected to feel institutional, felt warm and inviting.
    There were shelves of books and DVDs, a couple of gaming systems and a full kitchen. While I warmed the kettle on the stove, Khloe sat on the counter, talking to one of the girls I’d met this morning. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t remember her name!
    Once I’d finished making the tea, I made my way to Khloe and . . . and . . . ugh! I was going to seem so rudeif I made it obvious I didn’t know her name. I tried, telepathically, to make Khloe say her name the second I got over to them.
    â€œThis looks fun!” Khloe said, taking tea boxes from my hand. “Like we should have a tea party or something.”
    What was her name?!
    The girl brushed a stray curl out of her face and smiled at me. “I know we met in the frenzy of this morning. But you’ve probably met a million people today. My name is Lexa Reed. Friend of drama-queen Khloe Kinsella.”
    I breathed a huge sigh of relief.
    â€œLexa, of course! I’m Lauren Towers. New roommate of drama-queen Khloe Kinsella.”
    â€œTowers—aha! That’s why Khlo’s been calling you ‘LT,’” said Lexa.
    I raised an eyebrow at Khloe.
    â€œThat’s right,” Khloe said, pointing at me. “You have been nicknamed. I declared it so.”
    I looked at Lexa. “I guess I’ve been nicknamed.” I laughed, not

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