Tackled

By: Sabrina Paige

1

Cassie



Some job. This is probably the dumbest thing you’ve ever done, Cassandra Rae. The warning voice in my head sounds like my mother’s. I should listen to that little voice, but I don’t.

Instead, I take a deep breath and step through the front door of the house, a plain-looking thing with white siding and a concrete pathway that winds up the lawn. It looks like a regular house in this just-off-campus neighborhood, except for the fact that there are about fifty cars lining either side of the street nearby.

This is a house where a bunch of football players live. I don’t know how many or who exactly lives here. All I know is that this is supposedly where I can find Colton King, the dumb jock I’m going to be paid a lot of money to tutor.

He didn’t show up for our first tutoring session this afternoon — something the assistant coach said I should expect. My new employer also told me that if Colton didn’t show, I could find him here.

I look down at the photo of him from the website I pulled up on my phone.

Colton Is The King Of College Football



Underneath the headline is the player, smiling broadly at what I take to be the end of a football game here at the school.

I don’t know the first thing about football. But I do know that graduate school is expensive, and the Sociology department’s funding just got unexpectedly cut. Tutoring an athlete sounded a lot cushier than a lot of the other teaching assistant jobs available on campus. I mean, how hard could it be, right?

I stand there stupidly in the doorway in my straight black skirt and blouse, far too overdressed for this place. Really, I was just trying to make an attempt at looking at least halfway professional. It’s three in the afternoon and the house is crowded with bodies – guys walking around shirtless and girls wearing postage-stamp-sized bikinis. Music thumps so loudly I can’t hear myself think and too many people are doing body shots to even count.

A bikini top lands on my head.

I exhale heavily as I pick it off and pinch the fabric between my fingers, making as little contact with the garment as possible as I dangle it to the side like it’s covered in STDs. It probably is. In fact, I probably should douse myself in bleach when I get home.

The owner of the bikini, a topless blonde a few feet away from me, raises a hand in the air and hollers, “Whoo-hoo!” as she grins.

I can feel my IQ dropping already.

A guy sidles up beside me and puts his arm around my shoulder, his red plastic cup of beer dangerously close to my face. The smell of stale beer makes me want to vomit. Cheap beer and partying at three in the afternoon? If this is what being a cool college student is like, I’m grateful to have missed that phase of life. Being a nerd has its perks.

“You’ve got too many clothes on for this place,” the guy yells, his mouth too close to my ear.

I shrug off his arm. “Where’s Colton King?” I yell back.

“You’re not his type,” he says loudly as his eyes roam my body from my toes to my head. “But you do have a sexy-nerd-thing going. I’d even let you get with this,” he adds, gesturing to his body. I think he must be joking, but he looks at me like he’s totally serious.

I see. Because he thinks he’s doing me a favor.

“Thanks for the generous offer but I’ll pass,” I say. “Are you going to tell me where Colton is?”

“Do you know who I am?” he yells.

“No fucking idea,” I reply, turning around and slipping between a couple of co-eds dancing with plastic cups held high over their heads.


I walk into the kitchen with zero idea where I’m going, but at least it’s quieter in here. Another athlete stops me. “I’m going to need your shirt,” he says.

“That’s not going to happen,” I tell him. “I’m looking for Colton King.”

“Price of admission,” he says, then swallows half a cup of beer. “I’m afraid those are the rules. Shirt comes off or you leave. Or I can pull that little skirt up and see what you’ve got on underneath.”

He steps toward me, but I put a hand up, pushing it hard against his chest. “I’m going to warn you once,” I say. “Touch me and I’ll kick your balls right up into your throat.”

The meathead looks at me like he’s going to try it, but someone grabs his arm, yelling about two naked girls and a kiddie pool full of lube in the other room.

It’s like I walked onto the set of a porn film.

“He’s outside,” a girl yells, pointing toward the open back door. “Colton is. You’ll have to take that off if you want to slide off the roof, though.”

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