“You know what I wonder?”
“How could Gentry afford to make a cake as elaborate as a pig head.”
Kylie, Gentry, Zach, and Mikey all leaned in towards the center of the table, feigning both interest and disinterest. All except Felix, who pulled off a large piece of his chicken nugget and chewed it with childish delight. He gradually realized he had somehow chewed to long, then laughed and muffled out the word, “Wha?”
Kylie leered at him, then guffawed loudly, “Oh, I don’t know how he could afford it--- maybe because his parents are Texan millionaires?”
“He’s from Alabama.” Zach corrected with a strained voice.
“Texas, Alabama, same thing.” Mikey scoffed with a disgusted face, then softened it with a grin.
“Mmmm Bible Belt yep.” Casey said between bites of macaroni and cheese, “The dumbest people you’ll ever meet.”
“An Alabama lawyer?” Mikey drawled to let it sink in, “I read about how the justice system there is full of institutionalized racism. It’s horrible.”
“I bet Gentry just likes black meat to piss off his daddy.” Kylie smirked, chewing her gum back.
Mikey laughed and put his arm around Zach’s shoulders and pulled him close enough to plant a kiss on his lips. Zach just swatted him away.
Casey shrugged thoughtlessly, “I never really got why they didn’t get along. I used to want an internship from him, but Gentry never let me talk to him alone. I couldn’t ask him while Gentry was there, because that would be kind of rude.”
“Yeah, Gentry probably got it either way. If his dad is a lawyer, he’s probably going into politics.”
“Gentry, in politics?” Zach gave a laugh, even though he didn’t really think it was funny, “That fits.”
“Yeah, way too well.” Kylie meowed, narrowing her catty eyes, “The rotten apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.”
“Gentry isn’t like his dad that much.”
“Yeah, he sure isn’t.” Casey shrugged, “His dad’s smart and a real businessman. He’s really smart. He went to Princeton.”
“Yeah. Gentry,” Scoffed Mikey, “just follows the path his parents laid out for him; he has it easy. He even has a therapist, and for what? Being too wealthy? I can’t stand spoiled rich kids. Except you, Zach.”
Felix quietly fiddled with his lunch, wondering whether or not the mayonnaise was rotten. His dim black eyes glanced up for a moment, and upon noticing the table was quiet asked,
“Well, so, Casey. Why were you wondering about the cake? It’s because Gentry is rich, right?”
Casey leaned into the table, “Here is what I think… his parents kicked him out.”
“Kicked out?” Zach fell back in his seat, startled, “Why?”
“Not everyone has tolerant, gay-friendly parents.” Casey shrugged, retreating back into his favorite reclining position, “It’s sad. I wonder if he’s still going to go to college.”
“Oh… yeah, isn’t he going to some Ivy League?”
“Didn’t he tell you?” asked Zach.
Casey gulped down a large spoonful of macaroni and cheese, “Mmm… no, he didn’t tell me. Or anyone. He said it’s elitist to talk about things like that. But I think he just didn’t get in.”
“He told me he’s going to Princeton.” Zach blurted out.
The table fell silent.
“Princeton?” Casey raised both eyebrows, “Hm. Well, it’s an ok school. It’s not his shocking, he probably got in because his dad went there. I got into Harvard. What about you, Felix?”
“I’m planning to go to Stanford. I want to be a lawyer. You, Zach?”
Zach slouched in his chair, “…I didn’t really think about it. Maybe Stanford, too.”
“Well,” said Casey, “With your grades, you should maybe aim a little lower.”
“You should piss a little lower.”
“Okay, okay, settle down Zach.” Mikey cooed, pulling him into a quick ‘shut up’ kiss.
But Zach just pushed him away and continued,
“Besides, Gentry doesn’t write my essays for me.”
Mikey coughed, “Order, order. Hey! I’m doing the GSA tour this year.”
“Oh yeah.” Said Casey, easing back into his seat, “I forget to mention it in our meeting. This could be a good opportunity for you, Zach. Basically, we go around to classrooms and talk about gay rights. It’d be nice to finally have a black guy talking about us. You know, to show we’re diverse too.”