- Author: Penn Cassidy
Book online «Dead End: Midnight Hollow Penn Cassidy (good books to read in english TXT) 📖». Author Penn Cassidy
A Halloween Harem
Penn Cassidy Madeline Fay
Copyright © 2020 by Penn Cassidy and Madeline Fay
All rights reserved. This book or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the publisher except for the use of brief quotations in a book review.
Printed in the United States of America
Editing by Meghan Leigh Daigle of Bookish Dreams Editing
Formatting by A.J. Macey of Inked Imagination Services
Dedicated to pumpkin spice, wine, toilet paper and tacos.
You really came through in these trying times.
About Penn Cassidy
About Madeline Fay
The bus rolled to a stop in front of a shifty looking archway. It was rickety and rusted over, and I could barely read the writing. Beneath it was an old black and blue striped ticket booth, with a bored looking teenage girl inside. The traveling carnival was small, and in my opinion, not worth the thirty-minute ride to get here on a smelly, squished charter bus full of rowdy basketball players.
But Maddie made me promise I’d come with her since it was Halloween. Sunset University, where everyone finally started college courses last month, but me. The basketball team coach took out the big guns before the season started and bribed them to bond with a free trip to the carnival. At one time in my life, I’d have been excited, but now this trip just seemed like a chore. She said I needed a little fun in my life, but something told me Maddie’s version of fun did not align with my own right now.
I filed behind her closely, watching her blonde head bob down the aisle of the bus while she bounced on her toes in anticipation. I honestly couldn’t see what the big deal was. We’d gone to carnivals just like this one when we were kids. They came through the state every year around this same time. There was even a huge pumpkin patch and a hayride set up for the children every Halloween.
Back in high school, my mom and dad had never let me go to things like this, so when I snuck out, it was usually with Maddie and the guys I’d known since we were just little kids. One of the guys would drive, we’d all gorge ourselves on candy, sodas, and weed until we puked our guts out, only to do it all over again the next year.
I stumbled forward when something pushed me from behind, causing me to slam into Maddie. “Oh shit!” she yelped, but then laughed as I mumbed, “Sorry…”
She snorted, shaking her head as she righted herself and kept shuffling forward. I turned around, eyes already narrowed at the dirtbag behind me. I didn’t even have to look to know who it was. I knew he was there, looming over me as usual. I could smell his familiar scent, and how sad was that? Not cologne, but something like leather and aftershave.
Jason. One of four guys on the planet who I loathed with every fiber of my mortal being.
Our eyes connected, and I had to reel in a flaming blush at the fact that I had to crane my neck so far back to do so. My pale skin couldn’t hide an ounce of the rushing blood to my cheeks. Jason was tall and more than easy on the eyes. It pissed me off. He had mocha brown hair, smokey grey eyes, and a smile with two small dimples on each side. His skin was the color of almonds, and not a blemish to be found. I hated him. Hated those dimples. Hated the way those eyes stared at me in such revulsion nowadays, when I could so clearly remember a time when they were dancing with laughter and affection. A mean smirk curled his full lips.
A throat cleared behind me, and I whipped back around. Maddie was standing at the front of the bus, waving me over with a pressing look in her brown eyes. The line was blocked up behind Jason and I, waiting for my stupid ass to get moving. I heard him chuckle, but turned away in shame and practically sprinted off the bus into freedom.
“Sheesh, what was that?” Maddie asked, looping an arm through mine. We walked towards the ticket booth, following the herd. “The sexual tension coming off you guys is getting thicker by the day.”
I shoved Maddie, grumbling under my breath. She was right though. But I was almost one hundred percent sure the sexual part of that tension was coming from my side only. The last makeout session with him flashed through my memory without invitation. Jason could barely stand to breathe the same air as me these days, much less touch me.
“I think you’re reading too much into it. I’m the school leper, remember? Nothing’s changed just because we graduated.” I bit the inside of my cheek at how bitter I sounded to my own ears.
Maddie winced, and I felt bad for being snappy with her. But we both knew it was true. After my parents died and I went off the rails, the school and everyone who I used to hang out with treated me like I was some sort of walking fungal infection.
“He’s a piece of shit, Toby,” she said with a soft smile. My chest warmed at the nickname she’d given me when we were six years old and met for the first time in the lunchroom. She used to have trouble pronouncing October, but even after she got over the lisp, the name Toby just kind of stuck.
“True.” I shrugged, pretending it didn’t bother me one bit. “Let’s get this over with…”
I tried to let Jason’s heavy stare roll off of my shoulders