TITLE: Playing With Fire
GENRE: Apocalyptic Young Adult
Shouts echoed from around the corner. Bri paused on her way down the hallway. She had stayed late to print an essay in the library, and the hallways were empty. Most of the kids were outside, jostling into busses. Bri could take the back staircase. She’d gotten into enough fights, and her head was pounding because of her damn cold. But she'd have to trek all the way around the school if she went the back way. She might as well see what was going on.
She rounded the corner to see Joe Merrick and two of his friends standing around a kid on the ground. Bri couldn’t make out the victim’s face. She’d fought Joe last year, when he’d set on her while she was walking home, just, you know, for kicks. After one good punch from Bri, Joe had run off, and he’d left her alone after that. But he wouldn’t walk away without a fight in front of his friends. Today, though, the worst she could do would be to give these guys her cold. Plus, a teacher could come by at any moment. She turned and walked away.
Oh no. It was Phil. Bri turned and walked back down the hallway. Phil had done her a favor. She couldn’t abandon him.
"Hey!" Bri shouted. "Why don’t you leave him alone?"
"But we’re having so much fun," said Joe, lodging his booted toe into Phil’s side.