Cody was staring at me.
It was this intense stare that was beginning to make me uncomfortable, but I was biting my tongue. At the moment, Cody was the HoH and I was trying to go along with whatever he wanted to do this week, but this guy was just unreadable and, therefore, unpredictable. He had just had to put Christmas on the block after finding out that Paul had accepted the week's temptation and couldn't be nominated for three weeks. The look on Cody's face when Paul had revealed this twist had been priceless. I wasn't a huge fan of Cody as it was, but I had no real alliances in the house, so I was just going along with whatever.
But the more Cody stared at me, trying to intimidate me or read me or whatever the hell he was doing, the more I just wanted to do the opposite of what he wanted. Cody had told me to vote out Christmas over Jillian and I had been planning to do just that, honestly. But now the whole house was flipped upside down and all the alliances that had formed were basically obliterated.
"What, exactly, do you want from me, Cody?" I asked calmly, my eyes never leaving his.
Cody's usual frown deepened. "I want you to vote out Christmas," he replied.
"I'll think about it."
"You'll think about it?"
"Yeah. I'll think about it."
Cody didn't look too happy, but he pursed his lips and nodded once. I stood and left the room, heading downstairs to find Paul. He'd been pretty pissed at everyone about the fact that Cody was going to put him on the block. Of course, as far as I knew, no one in our alliance – not even Jessica – had known about Cody's plan. But I could see why Paul would be angry. Alliances weren't supposed to put each other on the damn block, especially not in week one.
Paul was outside by the pool when I found him. He was alone, putting sunscreen on, the sunglasses on his face showing me nothing of his eyes, just my own reflection when he looked up at me.
"Can I sit?" I asked him, indicating the seat beside him. Paul nodded, but didn't say anything.
For a few minutes, the two of us just sat in silence, which was a bit odd, coming from Paul. The only other people outside were Matt and Raven, who were on the hammock across the yard. I sighed and leaned back into the shade and out of the sun. "I didn't know he was planning to put you up," I said, keeping my gaze off Paul. "I don't know what he told everyone else, but he didn't tell me."
Paul finished rubbing in his sunscreen and sat back to look at me. "That's what everyone's saying," he replied. "It's a little hard to believe."
"Maybe, but it's true. Cody doesn't like me very much, and the feeling is mutual. I was in that alliance for the numbers, not because I liked the people."
Paul smiled and pushed his sunglasses up on top of his head. "So how are we gonna get him out, then?" he asked me.
"My favorite place I've visited was probably...Italy," I said. Raven and I were in the kitchen. She hadn't had the opportunity to travel much yet, but I'd been to many countries. I was a professional photographer, which meant I got to travel a lot; I loved it. Being stuck inside the Big Brother house was proving difficult for me. I was used to being out and about.
Raven grinned, her eyes wide like a child's. This made me smile even more. "What's it like there?" she asked me.
"Uh, it's amazing," Paul said, walking up beside me.
"Has everyone been to Italy?" Raven exclaimed, walking away.
"Can we talk?" Paul asked me, nodding towards the storage room. I nodded and followed after him, feeling nervous.
Once we were closed in the storage room, Paul looked at me somberly. Whatever he was going to say to me, it didn't look like it was going to be good. I held my breath, my heart already feeling like it was about to beat out of my chest.
Paul gave me his look, and I knew then that he was going to try to convince me to do something for him. My heartbeat slowed a bit; I'm not even sure what I had been expecting. Still, whatever he wanted probably wasn't good.
"I know you and Christmas don't really get along," Paul said, "but is there any way you would be willing to vote to keep her this week?"
The first night in the house, Christmas and I had had a falling out. It had been long overdue. The two of us knew each other outside of the house. I'd dated her sister and things hadn't ended too well there. Since then, Christmas had been waiting to see me again to give me a piece of her mind. Whether or not the producers knew that Christmas and I knew one another was still up in the air. Either way, we were here and it was clear that I was going to be one of her main targets. So keeping her in this house was not an option.
I shook my head. "She wants me gone, Paul," I said. "Why would I want to keep her around?"
"She wants Cody out, and Jessica, way more than she wants you gone."
"How do you know? Did you ask her?"
"I will keep you safe next week," he said, rather than answering my question. "I promise. But we need Christmas. She is a strong competitor and she wants those two out as much as we do. We could use her on our side."
I sighed. "Just because she's on your side, doesn't mean she's on mine."
"I told you I would keep you safe. You just have to trust me."
Chewing on my lower lip, I thought about it for a second. I needed Paul and the others. It was an unfortunate fact. If I didn't go along with the plan, I would probably lose them all. So, with a hefty sigh, I agreed to keep Christmas, hoping I hadn't just put the last nail in my coffin.