Alexis had had it up to her chin with her sister’s escapades and she was done covering for her. Like her friend Sonia said, it was the time Alexis began to live her life.
“Lexis, Lexis, are you in there?”
Alexis rolled her eyes and dropped her hair brush on the dresser. Whenever her twin sister called her name like that, she needed a favor. Alexis got up from her dresser, kicked off her slippers and got into bed. She didn’t bother answering to her sister’s call. She knew Audrey would eventually come up to her room.
“There you are,” Audrey said and climbed into her sister’s bed. “Lexis I need you, I need you, I need your assistance.” Audrey said.
Alexis sat upright. This was always her sister’s opening line. “Okay,” Alexis said and mentally got herself ready. “Now that we are in a chanting mood, you must want whatever it is badly.” Alexis said.
“As usual, you are correct.” Audrey said with a short laugh. “Promise you won’t say no,” Audrey said.
That was also another trick her sister often used to entrap her. Alexis was not about to fall into that trap again. “What do you want Audrey?” Alexis asked.
“Lexis you have to make the promise first.” Audrey insisted.
“Sorry Audrey no would do. I am not going to make you any promises until I’ve heard your request. The last time I did, things didn’t turn out well’.
“Oh please Lexis, just promise you’ll help me,” Audrey tried again.
“Audrey the answer is NO and please stop pushing. What do you want?”
“Oh okay,” Audrey sensed her sister won’t budge. “You have to sit for the French test in my place please.”
Alexis’ eyes popped open in their sockets. “What? Why would I do a thing like that?”
“Firstly because you are my sister, secondly, I need your help.” Audrey said, grinning like she just figured out some new tricks.
“Audrey the French teacher is strict and meticulous, I could get caught.” Alexis pointed out.
“Oh come on, Lexis we both know you won’t get caught, we are identical twins remember?”
“What would you be doing while I take your test?” Alexis thought to ask.
“Oh Fanem and thegirls invited me to this grand beach party, it turns out the French test would be on same day.” Audrey said sounding excited.
Alexis looked at her sister and gave her head a furious shake to emphasize her refusal. Audrey was as intelligent as she was; Alexis could not understand why her sister was determined to throw all that away just to be friends with some shallow minded group of girls.
“What?” Audrey asked. “Don’t look so shocked, it’s not like we are going somewhere illegal.”
“Your timing is what’s illegal.” Alexis could barely believe her ears. “You have school to go to, you have a French test to sit for and you want to skip all that for a beach party!”
“But I am not going to miss my test, you are going to cover for me dear, won’t you?”
“No Audrey, there is no way I’m going to cover for you.” Alexis said and got up. “You will have to find a way to write your test”. She added.
“Lexis please,” Audrey begged.
“No Audrey, I will not. In fact I will no longer cover up your excesses. If you want to keep up with those friends of yours, you cover your tracks yourself.”
Audrey hissed, muttered some nonsense words to express her disappointment and stormed out of her sister’s room.
Alexis heaved a sigh of relief and congratulated herself for refusing her sister’s request and putting her foot down.
The next morning, Alexis noticed her sister was giving her an attitude. That was fine with her, so long as Audrey understood that she was solely responsible for all her messes.
Audrey continued to ignore her sister all through the drive to school and was irritated that Alexis didn’t seem to care that she was being ignored. She frowned even more when Alexis’ phone rang.
“Hello, oh, sure (pause) definitely (pause) see you soon.” Alexis ended her call and resumed browsing through her I-Pad.
“Rubbish.” Audrey muttered and hissed loudly when Alexis still said nothing. They parted ways at school the moment the driver dropped them off.
“What’s up with your sister?” Sonia asked. “She totally snubbed my hello.”
“Ignore her; it’s me she’s sulking at.” Alexis said smiling.
“Did you girls fight or something?” Sonia asked.
“I refused to sit in for her French quiz.”
“Why does she want you to do that? It’s illegal.” Sonia was clearly surprised.
“So she can attend a beach party with Fanem and her group, can you imagine that.”
“And you said no? That’s a first! Way to go girlfriend.” Sonia smiled approvingly.
“It wasn’t easy but I did it and you know what, I’m glad I did”, Alexis smiled too.
Audrey met Fanem hurrying towards the parking lot. “Hey girl, where have you been, everyone is already in the car.”Fanem said.
“Oh, Hi Fanem,”Audrey said looking downcast.
“What’s the problem?” Fanem asked, peering intently at her. “Oh common, don’t tell me you’re bailing on the girls Audrey, big girls don’t do that.”
“I am not bailing on you all, it’s just that I have a French test in thirty minutes and I don’t know what to do.” Audrey explained.
“Oh that.Then you don’t have a problem. You can always go back and ask for a make-up test.” Fanem said off handedly.
“Really?” Audrey asked, she never heard of a make-up test for anyone without genuine reasons before.
“Yeah, really! We all do it. You simply meet the French teacher, tell him some sorry story of you being sick or whatever, shed a little tear and ask for a make-up.” Fanem said.
“Fanem you are a genius, I never thought of that before,” Audrey said.
“You can thank me later girlfriend but right now, we need to get going.” Fanem said and led the way.
Audrey pushed her concern to the back of her mind and followed Fanem.
Alexis’ mind skipped when the principal and two members of the disciplinary team walked into their classroom later that day.
“Listen up ladies and gentlemen,” The principal began without preambles.“It has come to our notice that some of you skip classes at will. I also learnt that some members of this class have gone on a certain beach party during school hours. I want their names and I want them now. So, everyone sit tight and on your spaces I want to see the vacant seats.”
Alexis’ heart began to beat in her rib cage. Think. Think. Think. She mentally urged herself. She slipped her hands down to the edges of her chair and hung on tightly to stop them from shaking. She wished there was a way she could help her sister.
“Thank you for your cooperation.” The Principal said after the exercise and left with his team and a list of defaulting students.
“Your sister is in deep shit.” Sonia said, pulling her chair closer to hers.
“I feel terrible, I wish there was something I could have done to help her.” Alexis said.
“Hey, don’t you go blaming yourself, you didn’t bring on any of these, besides we were all asked to remain on our seats, what could you have possibly done?” Sonia pointed out.
“I know,” Alexis muttered. “I still feel bad, I can’t help it.”
The beach party wasn’t what Audrey had expected. To be honest, Audrey didn’t know what she had expected. She simply wanted to be with the cool girls plus it was her first beach party ever. In fact, she never went to any party she wasn’t escorted to by her parents. She wanted a taste of freedom. Now she was here, she wished she’d taken her test. She was thirsty, tired and scared. There were so many boys there at the beach with very few girls all clad in sexy bikinis. Audrey had never seen so many naked bodies in one place. It wasn’t the life she was used to. All there was to drink was alcohol and booze. Audrey tried so hard to act like she was cool with everything. She however screamed out in fright when one of the boys grabbed her butt from behind. Fanem and the girls laughed at her like she was stupid.
“Stop it.” She cried when the skinny looking boy tapped her behind again.
“Common honey lets party.” The boy said and began to drag her y the hand.
Audrey didn’t wait to ask where she was being dragged to; she fought him off with all her might. “Get away from me, I don’t wish to party with you.” She screamed.
“Darn,” The boy swore and let her go.
Audrey quickly did her sister a text message asking her to come pick her up. Alexis and Sonia picked a cab and gave the driver the address Audrey had sent them via S.M.S.
Andrey threw herself at her sister in a tight embrace. “Thank you, thank you so much,” she cried. “I’m sorry I was mean to you Lexis, I should have listened to you.”
“It’s alright Audrey; we’ll get you out of here.” Alexis said, trying to calm her sister.
“Let’s get out of here.” Sonia said clearly irritated by what she saw.
Andrey continued to cry. “Stupid, Stupid beach party.” she said between sobs. Alexis didn’t know how to tell her sister she was in more trouble than a failed beach party. Sonia however did that for her.
“Well you are also in a bigger trouble with the school authorities Audrey.” Sonia said, thinking Audrey might as well cry it all out.
“Are you serious?” Audrey asked.
“I’m afraid so,” Alexis said and told her what had happened.
“I’m going to be grounded for life.” Audrey muttered dejectedly.
Alexis said nothing. Her sister would be grounded for sure. Once the school informed their parents of their daughter’s misconduct, Mom for one would be furious.
Just as they feared, Audrey got punished at school and grounded at home for what her Dad called gross misconduct. Their mother was so angry that she expressed her disappointment in Spanish. Alexis wished she understood the language, Audrey was glad she didn’t. in fact, it was a good thing she had no idea what her Mom said.
“Remind me to strangle whoever talks to me about a beach party again.”
“Sure.” Alexis laughed.