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Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.

"But mom, I don't want to give up my room for some girl." Tom said in quite a whiny tone.

"Oh hush now, I'm beginning to think with all this whinging that you're some kind of racist."

"Mom, no, that's not the reason, you know I'm not racist!" he desperately tried to defend himself. He's been in the same argument time and time again, but his mom wouldn't stop pushing this.

"Your 17 now, I'm sure sleeping on the couch for a month won't be so bad! This girl is coming all the way from Beijing to stay with us! You might even like her."

Tom was tired of arguing, he knew he would just be going around in circles again, he might as well just give up."Fine, mom, she can stay in my room, but I'm not sleeping on the couch for the whole time! Lily and I will swap."

"Yes! I know you and her will get along just fine."

"Hello! I'm Jie! I'm am so glad to be in America finally!" the perky but petite girl had just gotten off the plane, and she was still on a high. "You must be Tom, so pleased to meet you!" Jie wrapped her arms around Tom and gave him a squeeze. Tom, lost for words gingerly put his arms around her, awkwardly reciprocating the action. Jie let her silk glove grip off Tom, turning to his younger sister on his left. "You are Lily right? I can't wait to get to know you!" Jie went around, hugging and chatting to all the Johnston family. Tom shared a glance with his mother, she knew that he was not into the whole personal affection thing, but his mother could only return an encouraging smile, Tom knew this was going to be a long month. 

"Jie! What have I told you about eating on the couch! I need to sleep there!" Tom yelled down the hall, back to his room. It was bad enough he had to sleep on the couch, but now his mom was making him do it for the whole month!

"Sorry Tom, I totally forgot, I promise it won't happen again!" Returned the shout.

"That's what you said last time!"

"Oh, lighten up Tom! I double promise this time!" he could hear the girls giggling all the way in the lounge room. Jie was so dirty! He didn't want to think about the state of his room.

Tom, grumbling, lay on the couch, the draughty lounge room providing a room less than capable of being sleeping accommodations. It had been almost two weeks and he was sick of Jie, she was annoying, cheeky, and worse yet, best friends with his sister. 

"Uh, I'm going to catch a cold, its freezing in here." Tom got up, his underpants only attire wasn't the best for the climate, but its what he slept in. He walked over to the thermostat, fiddled with it, remembered it was broken, got back into his "bed" and tried to sleep. Two more weeks, just two more weeks.

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