Today I’m sharing a snippet from my old WIP titled Keepsake. It’s a YA contemporary about four best friends and their last summer together before college. I loved all the characters but stalled and then got distracted by other projects. It was a lot of fun to write and my first time attempting 3rd person. Hope you enjoy!
All her life Kayla had prided herself as being exceptional at all things. School? She was the valedictorian. Sports? She was the star volleyball player. Social status? Everyone knew her and she knew everyone. She had it all. But when it came to waitressing, it was the first time she’d experienced failure. And she did not like it one bit.
“Could this night get any worse?” she whined, sitting in the employee room with Lucia as they counted their tips. She’d barely made twenty bucks.
Priya snorted and shook her head. “It’s only eight. There’s plenty time left for you to mess up. “
“Oh, you shut it.” Kayla narrowed her eyes at her cousin. Priya had only just come in for her shift and had no idea the kind of humiliation Kayla had endured.
After falling on her ass in front of Bellamy and Lindsay, who couldn’t stop laughing for at least fifteen minutes, she managed to screw up three orders, got spaghetti sauce on her pants, and dumped a drink on one of the costumers.
“Why did I think I could do this job?”
Lucia reached a hand across the table and squeezed Kayla’s arm. “Because you think you’re good at everything, but you’re not.” She smiled sweetly.
Kayla snatched her arm away and pointed a finger at her. “You did this to me! Come work at Gio’s Kayla, it’ll be great. All four of us working together, raking in the tips!” she mimicked Lucia’s voice, making it nasally and high pitched.
Lucia’s mouth dropped. “I do not sound that annoying.”
“If only you knew,” Kayla quickly ducked, narrowly avoiding the breadstick Lucia threw at her.
“My feet are killing me.” Lindsay plopped down on an empty seat. She lifted her feet onto the table and proceeded to take her shoes off.
“Lindsay!” Kayla screeched, aghast. “Manners!”
Lindsay rolled her eyes and made a point of taking her feet off, but continued to pull off her socks and shoes and began to rub her feet.
“You’re disgusting.” Kayla gathered her tips and went to grab her things from the locker.
“Are you still mad because I told the hot new cook about your nickname?” Lindsay asked innocently.
Kayla slammed her locker shut. “You know if you weren’t my sister I’d disown you!”
Lindsay laughed. “You know that you can still disown someone if they’re related to you? I thought you knew everything Ms. Harvard.”
Kayla ignored the insult and instead reveled in the knowledge that in two short months she was finally leaving Keepsake and heading to her dream college. The thought took some of the sting out of her disastrous second week on the job. She pulled on her sweater and began to button it back up.
“What are you doing here, spy?” Gio yelled from the kitchen.
“The competition hasn’t even started, Gio,” replied Trey’s familiar cocky tone.
“Doesn’t mean I’m not working on my secret dish to take you down this year!”
“Don’t worry, Gio, you’re secret’s safe with me!”
Lucia’s face lit up, as always, when she heard Trey. Kayla swore the girl glowed whenever he was around. She acted annoyed to see her best friend get so frazzled around her boyfriend of six years, but a slither of envy accosted her usual impenetrable armor of not caring.
Kayla couldn’t remember the last time she’d kissed someone, or had looked that happy to see anyone. In fact, she was sure it had never happened.
“Hey, Baby.” Lucia jumped up and wrapped her arms around Trey as he entered the room.
He stumbled slightly, taken by surprise. “Hey,” he pulled away from her, face red.
That was new, Kayla thought. Trey never blushed. Usually he reciprocated Lucia’s advances by sucking her face.
“What are you doing here? I thought you were hanging with your brothers tonight?” Lucia bounced on her feet.
Trey cleared his throat. “Yeah. Uh. Can we talk somewhere? Privately?” He whispered.
Lindsay and Kayla exchanged a look. That was also new.
Lucia shrugged, unfazed. “Sure. Let’s go out back.” She dragged him out by the hand.
“That was weird,” Lindsay noted, biting her thumbnail.
Kayla made a face. “You are so disgusting. And uncivilized. How are we related again?”
Kayla watched her little sister, fascinated. Even though they were only a year apart in age, the girls looked a lot alike. Brown hair, large green eyes, round heart-shaped faces. They could have been twins. If it weren’t for the fact Kayla already had a twin, Kevin. And where Kayla was tall and leggy, Lindsay was petite and cute.
“Do you need a ride home, or is Pete stopping by?” Kayla asked, shuffling through her purse to grab her keys.
Lindsay stood up, both shoes and socks in hand. “Yeah. Pete’s got a family thing tonight.”
“Okay, you definitely need to cover those disgusting things before you get into my car.” she pointed to Lindsay’s bare feet.
Lindsay wiggled her toes and smiled. “But they’re so cute.”
“And stinky. Seriously, why do your feet always smell so bad,” she gagged as they walked out to the kitchen, heading to the back door.
“Heading out?” Toni sashayed into the kitchen, dropping off a ticket for Bellamy, who was proving to be quite the chef. The girls nodded. “How many did you break tonight, Kay?” Toni asked, placing her pen back in her bun.
Kayla crossed her arms and glared. “Only two.”
Toni smirked. “Settle up, little miss,” she held her hand out to Lindsay.
“Aw man!” Lindsay pushed her hand into her pocket and pulled out a five dollar bill. “You only had to break one more, Kayla!”
Kayla stared between the two of them, mouth gaping open. “You two bet on how many dishes I would break tonight?!” A furious blush of anger rushed up her cheeks and neck.
Lindsay only shrugged. “We have to find a way to keep ourselves entertained around here.”
“Toni,” she beseeched her best friend.
“Sorry, girl, but you are a disaster. Entertaining as hell, but a disaster.”
She heard Bellamy chuckle from his cooking station. Kayla tried to ignore it, but for some reason the new guy mocking her grated on her nerves.
Kayla stormed over to Bellamy and poked a finger into his chest. “You keep your mouth shut. You are not a part of this.”
Lindsay cleared her throat. “Actually he is.”
Bellamy sidled up a smile. “Yeah. I won ten bucks.”
She was fuming. Kayla had never fumed before. She was angry, humiliated and wanted to punch something. Or someone. Before she raised a fist to one of their faces, Gio waddled in from the bathroom.
“So, what’s the verdict? Did I win?”
That was it. She was going to quit. Even as she thought the words, she knew she couldn’t. Kayla had never quit anything in her life. Not ever. She’d just have to talk to Gio in the morning about the hostessing gig and pray that he agreed.