A/N: I know, I said I was done with High School Musical. But that was months ago, before I realized my school was doing it for their spring play, so now I'm around it 24/7 and I found a couple more stories that need to be told.
Chad tried to smile at Troy's joke, but his mind was a hundred miles away. Actually, it was more like two. His house. His small house on the wrong side of town with his abusive alcoholic father.
"Chad! Hello? Earth to Chad!"
He looked up, suddenly aware that he had been asked a question by a very aggravated Zeke. "Sorry dude, what'd you say?"
Zeke rolled his eyes but repeated the question, slower this time. "I asked you what time you were going to be there. Saturday? The carnival?"
The spring carnival was something that had been occurring in Albuquerque since Chad's great-grandfather was born, and probably before that. It was a chance to go on corny rides and eat horrible food and spend twenty bucks trying to win a stupid bear for a girl. It was the best thing that happened all year.
"I don't know when I'll be there." Chad asked, quickly calculating in the factors of his girlfriend and his father. "Sometime around two, I guess." The game was early ― ten o'clock in the morning.
Troy closed the door to his locker, pulling over his shirt at the same time. "You ready yet, Chad?"
Chad and Tory had walked home together from basketball practice since the beginning. It was the only way not to have Coach Bolton drive them home. And since Troy only lived twelve blocks away from Chad, it was a logical decision. Except that Chad lived six blocks away from The Line.
In a town as big as Albuquerque, there was bound to be a good side of town and a not-so-good side of town. There really was no difference, just a difference in money. At least that's what the public officials wanted them to think. In actuality, there was a huge difference ― schooling, families, gangs. The only reason Chad was allowed to go to East High was because he knew how to play basketball. He was one of the first people from the west end of town to go there.
Walking home, Chad got caught up in a conversation with Troy about who was better, Gabriella or Taylor. It didn't get very far, because Troy was blushing every four seconds, but damn, it was funny. They were laughing by the time they got to Troy's street.
"See you man." Said Chad, still walking, laughing to himself.
"Chad!" Troy called him back. Chad turned around and looked at him. "Is there anything wrong, Chad? You seemed...distracted."
The look of worry on Troy's face was so different from the smile that had been there a second ago. Chad tried to look nonchalant when he said. "Naw Troy, you know. Just stuff. Just life."
Troy still looked skeptically at Chad, his brows furrowed in the middle as he watched his friend walk away, massaging a large bump on the back of his neck.
Hope someone's reading this and reviews...