Home > The Perfects

The Perfects
Author: Rachel Van Dyken

 

Dedication


If I put in all the people that helped with this book, this dedication would be way too long. I’m so thankful. So thankful to the readers, other authors, my team, and just everyone who encouraged me as I wrote this. I also have a confession—I did, in fact, drink Red Bull. Wow, that felt good to confess.

Love you all <3

 

 

Part One

 

 

Chapter One


Ambrose

I hate being rich.

This is the only phrase getting repeated in my head over and over again as I stomp through the halls of my high school.

Senior year is supposed to be the time of your life; instead, I’m throwing around fake smiles, fake fist bumps, and even the random high five to people all because I’m student body president—and because my dad’s famous.

And I’m not talking like he owns a billion furniture stores or he’s a politician… no, he doesn’t have a restaurant franchise.

He just owns the town, the same town I live in, the same town named after our family, God help us, and the same town that’s been established as the safest place to live in Idaho four years running!

What an accomplishment. A round of applause, everyone!

He keeps his fucking trophies on the mantle in the living room, you know, next to the key to the city and our perfect little family photo.

Ask me if I’m smiling in it.

He comes from at least a century of a fuck-ton of money which means we’re basically untouchable and that I have to have a sorry-ass smile on my face whenever I’m out in public because the last thing I need to do is make the great McCree family look bad.

I’m pretty sure I’ve made one mistake in my whole life—I ate candy in public, and my dad got mad because my tongue got all red before a press conference.

Yeah, that was it.

That was my one mistake.

Forget smoking weed, getting drunk in public, and wanting to develop a serious addiction to anything that will help me escape. How would I even find the time at this point in my life?

Everything is perfect.

Literally everything.

Except it isn’t.

The only thing I have going for me is that everyone thinks I’m this untouchable asshole prick who sleeps in a different pair of Jordans every night just because he can.

The guys want to be me.

The girls worship me.

And I’m set for life.

Blah, blah, fucking, blah.

So, why do I want to jump off a ten-story building and see how fast the blood leaves my body every single time I have I walk into this high school?

I need to be done with it—with all of it.

God, I can’t wait until college.

At least then I can have a tiny bit of separation from the pressure of it all. I force another smile as I walk into English Lit and take my seat in the back corner next to the window, where I spend at least an hour watching birds fly around and thinking how fucking jealous I am that they’re outside and I’m inside.

At least I have lacrosse practice after this, and I’ll be allowed outside of prison.

I’m paying basically zero attention when my phone starts blowing up. I frown down at it and see a group text from some of my teammates.

Mel: Bro, you holding out on us?

Astin: I mean, seriously—how lucky are you? Fucking prince of potato town and all that.

Me: I have zero clue what you guys are talking about.

Mel: Bulllllllllshit. I just saw the article. Byron sent it over like two minutes ago.

Byron Big B has been added to the conversation.

Astin: Bro, tell him!

Byron Big B: Dude, you’re getting a new roommate! Or shall I say, princess? And I agree with the guys, bullshit you didn’t know. I mean, it’s all over the afternoon news; twitter’s blowing up with pictures of her and your parents all over town.

Me: She? Who is she? And what the hell are you talking about?

They send me a link to an article. I click on it just as one of the office aides knocks on the classroom door and lets themselves in with a note for Mr. Stick-up-his-ass, also known as my English Lit teacher—Mr. Wilder.

He frowns down at the note and then looks directly at me. “Ambrose, you’re needed in the office; grab your things.”

Part of me’s thinking day just got better, and then I think back on the group text and wonder if this walk down the hall will be more like death row than a prison escape.

My mom’s waiting for me at the school office; her eyes are blurry with unshed tears—she’s not allowed to cry in public, but I can tell she wants to.

“Mom?” I frown at her.

She stands, puts on her black Chanel sunglasses, and adjusts her all-black Lululemon outfit.

She’s wearing a ring on almost every finger, and the filler in her lips has yet to go down enough for her not to look like a Kardashian.

She’s beautiful—and I have nothing against a woman doing things to her body, have at it. I just wish that the confidence came from something other than spending money on looking like someone else.

Her dark hair is slicked back into a tight bun. “Honey, something’s happened. We need to go to the house.”

Panic seizes my chest. “Is it Dad?”

“No,” she says quickly.

“Grandpa?”

“We’ll talk in the car.” Is all she says when we leave the office. I’m a little bit shook up as we make it to the red Lambo SUV she drives around.

She still refuses to let me drive any of the sports cars to school ever since crashing my brand-new BMW last year after taking a corner too fast.

How was I supposed to know there would be a stupid rabbit out of nowhere?

We drive through Eagle and into the Boise foothills, and she still says nothing as we drive around the mountain and to the black front security gate to our house.

“Mom.” My voice cracks. “What’s going on?”

“My sister—your aunt was in an accident. She didn’t make it.” Her voice is hoarse. “As you know she couldn’t have kids and had just decided to start fostering a young girl.”

“Okay…” My mind is spinning. Is this what the guys were talking about?

“Anyway…” She sniffles and pulls around the driveway. “If we don’t take her in—she goes back into the system, and she’s lived a very rough life, you don’t have any siblings.”

I’m stunned stupid. What the hell? “Charity,” I say. “We’re doing charity so Dad looks good. Why am I not surprised?”

She cuts the engine. “You know how much I loved my sister.”

“You saw her twice a year.” I point out. “Last time you fought over which plastic surgeon was better, and she threw wine in your face.”

“She wasn’t herself.” Mom looks away. “Your dad pulled a few strings, and we were able to cut through some red tape and take her in.”

“Does the long-lost princess have a name?” I sneer like the asshole I am.

Mom grabs her purse and checks her lipstick. “Mary-Belle.”

I roll my eyes. “Of course it is.”

“Be nice.” Mom snaps. “She’s a little… overwhelmed.”

I look over at my three-story mansion with its seven waterfalls, strategically parked sports cars, and brick driveway and shake my head. “No. Shit.”

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