“And you worry about big fish in little ponds, my friend.” James nods to me like he has just proved a point, but I have no idea what he is talking about.

Erik gaufs, “and you’re worried about the boogeyman under the bed.” The comeback makes me uncomfortable.

“How many times do I have to tell you, Stargate was an actually government project. There are declassified documents and everything,” he looks at me and shakes his head, “and it has nothing to do with the boogeyman or aliens. It was legitimate parapsychological research. It is legitimate parapsychological research.”

Erik rolls his eyes and looks at me, “As a member of the Cherokee Nation, I have legitimate beef with the United States government. Privileged white boy, here, needs to make up psychic spy shit to justify his false sense of marginalization.”

“Privileged?” James scowls at Erik.

“Oh don’t let that truck, fool you Amber.” Erik gives a wink before jogging to the door and holding it open for me. He doesn’t elaborate, and James doesn’t disagree. A new mysterious nugget to fester in my head all day.

“Well, it’s been nice meeting you,” Erik says as I pass, “but I’m already running late for homeroom.” He lets the door go behind me and points at James, “See you at lunch?”

“Yeap,” James turns his attention to me, and for a moment I feel the palm of his hand on my back, “I’m going to head to class, too,” he says nodding in the opposite direction.

“I’m sorry I made you late. You won’t get in trouble will you?”

“Nah, my dad already knows, ” and with that he waves goodbye. I head to the office with my forged note.

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