You know how some days are so bad that you wish you could just home go and start over? Yeah, that was the kind of day I was having. I overslept because my alarm didn’t go off, and when I got out of bed that morning, my foot landed right on my brand new cell phone and I cracked the glass and I was pissed! I had been talking to my boyfriend Seth late the night before, and I was too exhausted to charge my phone so I just dropped it on the rug next to my bed. Not the smartest thing to do. I was addicted to my phone so I planned to call and have it fixed later that day.
As I got ready for the school day, I tried not to think about my phone and focused instead on buying my graduation dress after school. Graduation was two weeks away and I couldn’t wait to be done with high school. I had been saving up for months and I’d found the perfect dress at the store where my friend Carrie worked. I had basically been stalking the store, waiting for it to go on sale, and Carrie called me the day before to let me know that it had been marked down to final sale and she put it on hold for me. I shifted my focus to my new dress instead of my broken phone, and I couldn’t wait until school was over that day so I could go buy it.
As I rushed down to our kitchen, I had just enough time to shove down a bagel and slam my orange juice. As I poured the juice, it splashed all over me and I had to go change my clothes, which made me miss the bus which also made me late for school. As I rushed into my first period calculus class, my teacher, who I think never really liked me, handed me the pop quiz that everyone was taking. Really? There’s only two weeks of school left and you’re springing a quiz on us? Great. I sat down and somehow was able to focus enough to complete the test, hoping that would pass.
The rest of my day kind of fell in line with how it started: Seth was busy helping the graduation committee so I barely got to see him, my best friend Bethany ditched school that day (again), and as I was leaving school I felt waves of cramps and knew that my period was about to start…one week early. It had always been irregular so my mom and doctor wanted to put me on the pill to help regulate it but I had resisted that idea, until that very moment. I decided I was going to call my doctor the next day to get a prescription. I rushed into the bathroom just in time, took care of it, and breathed a huge sigh of relief as I walked out of the doors of my school so happy that my school day was over. I rode the bus to Michigan Avenue finally feeling relaxed for the first time that day, so excited about my dress. It was there waiting for me, just as gorgeous as ever, and I finally felt like my day was turning around.
It was unseasonably hot for the beginning of June in Chicago, and I could feel beads of sweat gathering on my upper lip, the hot wind whipping through my long brown waves, as I made my way over to Bethany’s house. We went to each other’s houses almost every day after school. She lived two blocks from me and I wanted to give her a hard time for ditching again and show her my new dress. Bethany was not the most responsible person, but always made me laugh and feel better, so when I bounded into her parent’s house after the cleaning lady let me in, I was looking forward to whining about my day to her. I walked up the stairs to her room and knocked on her door calling her name and opened it, as I usually did.
“Bethany, I bought my dress! Seth is going to love it! I can’t wait for you to see…”
It took a minute for my brain to register what was going on. Sheets were being quickly shuffled and I saw panicked looks on two faces, the two most important faces in my life, aside from my family. This is not happening right now. I dropped the bag that was holding my dress as I watched my best friend of 12 years and my boyfriend of four years scrambling to put their clothes on.
“What the hell is this?!” My voice boomed louder than I ever knew was possible as I looked at two very guilty people.
Seth spoke first. “Skylar, this is not what it looks like, I swear! We were just hanging out, that’s it! Nothing happened!”
I turned steely eyes toward Bethany who would not look at me. I felt like I had been punched in the stomach as I watched the two of them standing there half naked.
“Are you both kidding me right now? I just saw you! I can’t believe you two! Screwing? Behind my back? What?! You can’t find your own guy so you have to go and steal mine Bethany? You’re such a slut! You know what? I finally figured out why you’ve never had a boyfriend. Guys don’t want to be seen with you in public, they only want to use you for sex! You have to slither around and open your legs for any and every guy out there to get any kind of attention from them, huh? You’re nothing but a skanky, tramp piece of trash! And you Seth, you make me sick! How stupid do you think I am? You were just hanging out? I’m sure that included her sucking you off, and I hear from all the guys at school that she’s pretty good at it! How long has this been going on between you two? How long!”
It felt like fire was flying out of my eyes and I was shaking as I tried to control my rage. “Bethany, you better answer me right now!”
She raised blood shot, tear stained eyes to me and her tears only pissed me off more. “Six months. I’m so sorry Sky, I didn’t mean to do this to you!” She started balling uncontrollably and I felt totally numb, I couldn’t believe that this was happening. I cut my eyes toward Seth.
“How could you do this to me? You told me you loved me and I believed you! How could I be so stupid? Everything changed after I finally had sex with you this year. You were just waiting to get into my pants, weren’t you, and then as soon as you did, you throw everything we had away, like I meant nothing to you?”
“Sky, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to hurt you. I do love you! I meant it when I told you that I loved you, this didn’t mean anything. I don’t know why I do some of the stupid things I do.”
Bethany shot him a cold glare and I actually got a little bit of pleasure from that.
“Did you hear that Bethany? You don’t mean anything to him and I guess you must be one of the stupid things he’s talking about.”
They both looked pathetic, guilty and caught, and I didn’t want to be around either of them anymore. I went over to Bethany and pointed my finger right in her face, my eyes narrowed and cold. “You are a fucking bitch.”
I stood back and glared at them, my eyes shooting daggers at both of them. My voice was even and deadpan as I spoke.
“When I leave this room I do not ever want to hear from either of you again and I mean it. You are both dead to me.”
I grabbed my bag, turned and walked out and slammed her door behind me. Seth came after me but I kept walking right out of Bethany’s parent’s house and he followed me into the street, grabbed my arm and spun me around. I snatched my arm out of his grasp and my face was mottled in rage.
“Do not touch me!”
“Please don’t leave like this Sky! Can’t we talk about this?”
I stood looking at him, my eyes cold and blank. His eyes were begging and I could tell that he knew he had lost me. “No! Goodbye, Seth.”
I turned to walk home and he didn’t follow me this time. I made it inside my house before the tears streamed uncontrollably down my face. I collapsed to the floor in a heap of sobs and my mom ran from the kitchen to see what was wrong. She helped me up to the couch and held me in her arms as I told her what Bethany and Seth had done to me. We talked for a while and she told me that I would feel better the next day after a good night of sleep. She also told me that if I didn’t want to talk to them anymore I didn’t have to.
“That chapter of your life is over Skylar and it might not feel like it now, but you have big, big things ahead in your life. One day this will be nothing but a distant memory. You’ll meet better friends, friends who won’t betray you, and you’ll meet a wonderful guy one day. I know it hurts now honey, but trust me it will get better. I’m so sorry that this happened to you, I know how much you love both of them.”
“It’s not fair mom! Seth betrayed me with my best friend! How pathetic and cliché is that? Why did he do this to me? How could Bethany do this to me?” I was wailing as my mom gently rocked me back and forth.
“It will be okay honey, I promise.”
Later, as I lay in my bed, I was so happy that my horrible day was coming to an end. I thought about all the stuff I had done with Bethany over the years; all of the sleepovers, sharing secrets, talking about first kisses, and I wondered if she ever really liked me, because if she did, she wouldn’t have done this to me. Maybe she was jealous of me and maybe she had secretly always liked Seth. I don’t know.
Oh, and Seth, what a liar. He was the only boy I had been with and we slept together for the first time on my 18th birthday a couple of months before. I felt sick to my stomach as I realized that he had slept with Bethany before he slept with me. I thought that night was perfect and so special at the time. He told me that he loved me, that he would never hurt me and that he wanted us to get married after college. It made me feel like he really did love me and I believed him and trusted him. We had all just recently had an incredible night together at prom the weekend before, Bethany went with a guy she told me she had a major crush on. I never in a million years would have guessed that my boyfriend and my best friend were hooking up behind my back. Maybe there were signs all along and I missed them because I thought I was so happy and in love.
My eyelids became very heavy as I tried to push thoughts of what had happened out of my mind. I drifted off to sleep wishing that graduation was the next day instead of a couple of weeks away. I would have to avoid Bethany and Seth at school because I didn’t want to see them and I didn’t want the whole school whispering about us. There was absolutely nothing either one of them could say to me to make things better.
We graduated a couple of weeks later and in those weeks, both Seth and Bethany called me and texted me non-stop. I defriended both of them on Facebook and didn’t return any of their messages. I meant it when I told them they were dead to me. I spent the summer with my other good friends, stayed as busy as possible and I was really looking forward to the next chapter of my life. It took a couple of months for the pain to subside, but it wasn’t totally gone.
Every now and then I felt sad about what Bethany and Seth did to me, and sad about the relationships that were ruined, but I kept reminding myself that I was better off without them. No one needed friends like that. My friends told me that Bethany and Seth had not seen or talked to each other since the day I caught them, and in a weird way I found that sad. They ruined our relationships for nothing. I didn’t see Bethany or Seth the entire summer and I was okay with that. I ended the summer on a good note, spending the last weekend with a bunch of my friends and it felt really good to have people I trusted around me. I had no desire to date any guys even though a few asked me out over the summer. I had a concrete wall protecting my heart and I vowed to myself to never allow anything like that betrayal to happen to me again.
It was going to take a very long time for me to trust new people and I was okay with that. I would go off to college, probably meet a few nice girls, stay away from the guys, and focus on studying. After what I had been through with Seth, I had no desire to let anyone near my heart, not for a very long time. It was a perfect plan, or so I thought. My first week of college I would quickly learn that there are some things you just can’t control.
I was so excited to go away to college that I almost forgot my silver ring the day I was leaving and I would have been devastated if I had left that behind. It was nothing expensive or fancy, just a thin, simple, sterling silver band with tiny sunflowers etched all around it. My dad gave it to me for my 8th birthday, it was the first piece of real jewelry that I had ever gotten and I wore it on my pinkie finger almost every day. Some days I wore it on a necklace if my fingers were too swollen. It used to fit on my index finger, but as I got older I found that I had to move it down a finger until the pinkie was the last stop. It was one of the things that helped me get through the whole Bethany/Seth thing.
I remember the day he gave it to me, it was after my birthday party and he came to my room to say good night. My mom had already kissed me goodnight so he and I were alone. He sat on my bed and placed a tiny pink box in my hand.
“Daddy, you already gave me a birthday present!” I couldn’t stop beaming at him because I was so excited to get another present.
“I know sweetheart, but this one is extra special and you are my little princess. Go ahead, open it.” He had a grin on his face that was as big as mine as he sat waiting for me to open my gift.
I carefully opened the box and gleaming up at me was the prettiest ring I had ever seen. I flung my arms around him and I think I must have kissed his cheek 20 times. We didn’t have a lot of money but my parents always managed to make my birthdays special.
“Thank you daddy! It’s so pretty!”
He hugged me back and kissed the top of my head. “You’re welcome sweetheart. When you wear that ring I want you to remember that even though I might not be in the same room with you, I will always be in your heart.”
My dad and I had a really special relationship. I know it was different than the one he had with my older brother and sister, I could talk to him about anything and loved being around him. I spent a ton of time with him and I think my mom felt a little left out sometimes, but I loved them both the same. The only time I took my ring off was when I took a bath or shower.
My dad died in a car accident the next year and I didn’t think I would ever be able to get out of bed again. I cried for days. The only thing that helped me get through each day, aside from my mom, brother and sister, was the ring that I clutched tight every time I thought about him.
My mom remarried a really nice man named Jay three years later, and while I had a good relationship with him, I still missed my dad every day. My step-dad told us that he would never try to replace our father but he wanted all of us to know that he loved us and he would be there for us whenever we needed him. He was a grade school science teacher and he didn’t have any kids of his own, but he treated us like we were his own kids.
My mom and step-dad were driving us to the airport that day, the car was all packed and we had just started to drive away when I rubbed my pinkie finger, feeling for my ring, which was something I did mindlessly all the time. I didn’t feel it there and I started to panic. I definitely had to have my dad with me for my first day of college and there was no way I was going to leave without my ring.
“Mom! I forgot my ring, I have to go in and get it!”
My step-dad stopped the car and pulled back into the driveway.
“Okay honey, but hurry, we don’t want to miss our flight.”
I ran to my room and grabbed my ring off of my dresser. As I slipped it on I smiled to myself because I could feel my dad watching me. I hopped down the stairs and locked the door behind me taking a long look at our house. We lived in a small bungalow on the north side of Chicago and while it wasn’t big or fancy, it was perfect to me. I had a lot of good memories in that house of Christmases, birthdays, and my first date. I would miss it but I was excited for what was ahead of me, and so happy that I could feel my dad watching over me. I spun on my heel and trotted off to the car feeling that I now had everything I needed to start this new phase in my life. It was time to close this chapter of my life, leaving thoughts of Seth and Bethany behind, and start fresh and new, and I couldn’t wait.
I had gotten a full ride to a top university in Massachusetts, and although I was excited to be away from home, I was also a little bit nervous. I had never been that far from home before and I was kind of worried about not having my parents right there if I needed them, but it was time for me to grow up. I was going to make this an incredible time in my life that I would never forget.
When we arrived at my dorm, my adrenaline was flowing as the excitement coursed through my veins. There were tons of people arriving on campus and there was this awesome buzz of energy in the air. My mom and step-dad stayed for a couple of hours and helped me get settled in my room and then it was time for them to head back to the hotel. They were going to fly back home the next day and my mom looked a wreck as she hugged me goodbye. I kept reassuring her that I would call home all the time. She finally let go of me after a couple of minutes and my step-dad kissed me goodbye and put his arm around my mom to comfort her. I was the last one of my siblings leaving for college, my brother and sister had graduated a couple of years before, and the days leading up to it were really difficult for my mom. Even though my dad wasn’t there, I was really happy that my mom wasn’t alone after she dropped me off at college because I don’t think she would have been able to handle it without some sort of support.
When my parents left I sat on my bed for a bit and let it sink in that I was really at college. After a few minutes I started unpacking my stuff, wondering what my roommate was going to be like and hoping that we would get along. My dorm was really busy with students unpacking and goofing off. I was putting some of my clothes in my dresser when I heard someone coming in.
“Hello?” A friendly voice called out and I turned to see a gorgeous bubbly blonde with a huge grin plastered on her face holding a big box. She was about my height, had shoulder length hair and had a really pretty face. Her parents were smiling at me as they helped her carry some of her stuff in.
I smiled back at all of them and quickly helped her carry the box.
“Hi! Oh, let me help you with that.”
“Oh gosh thanks, this thing is so heavy! I’m Katie by the way and these are my parents Kathleen and Tom.”
“Hi, I’m Skylar, but my friends call me Sky. It’s nice to meet all of you.”
“Skylar, where are you from?” Katie’s mom had a sweet smile on her face as she waited for my answer.
“I’m from Chicago. Where are you guys from?”
“We are from a small town in Ohio called Maumee. Wow, Chicago, huh? Do you live in a tall building?” Katie’s eyes sparkled with interest.
I couldn’t help but smile at her. “No, we live in a house in the city.”
“Wow, that must be really cool.” I almost wanted to chuckle because she seemed star struck.
“Sorry to interrupt girls but Katie honey, daddy and I are going to go get the rest of your things from the car.”
“Oh! Let me help you guys.” Before they could protest I walked out of the room first and we all went to the car and grabbed the last of her stuff. “Did you guys drive here? You have so much stuff!”
“No, believe it or not, this is what we were able to bring with us on the plane. Thank goodness for rental cars!”
After we dropped off all of her stuff in our room, Katie’s parents said their goodbyes and her mom had the same look of sorrow on her face that my mom had when she said goodbye to me. We were finally alone and we sat down and started chatting and chatting.
Katie rolled her eyes and smiled after her mom left.
“She’s been like that for the last week.”
I couldn’t help but laugh out loud. “My mom has been the same way.”
We told each other about our lives back home and how excited we were to finally be away from home on our own. I told her about what Seth and Bethany did to me and it felt really good to tell someone who didn’t really know any of us.
“You are kidding! God, that’s the oldest story in the book!” She rolled her eyes in disgust. “The best friend and boyfriend hooking up? That’s so lame Sky, you’re better off without them. I would have totally cut them off too, how could you ever trust either one again? On to bigger and better friendships, right?”
“Right!” I smiled at her grateful for her encouraging words, and for some reason her words made me feel really good. I liked her already. Katie told me that she had recently broken up with her boyfriend and was on the prowl for someone new. She also told me that her family owned a bunch of luxury car dealerships all over Ohio so I knew they had to be loaded. I’d better get used to that. I was going to be in a financial league all by myself at a university like this.
“I am so psyched for the parties, they’re going to be so much fun! Hopefully we will meet some cute guys. Hey, there’s a band playing at the student union tonight, we should go!”
“There’s a band on the first night we get here? Some people aren’t even here yet!”
“I know, I guess it’s something they do every year as a little something extra for the people who show up the first day, and they’re supposed to be awesome! I think they’re all seniors. It’ll be fun, say yes, please!”
There was no way I could turn down her pleading eyes, she was too nice and seemed like a lot of fun. I was looking forward to hanging with her and getting to know her better.
“Okay, I’ll go, it sounds fun!”
“Oh, sweet! One thing you’ll learn about me is that I like to study hard and also have fun. I know when to focus on the books and when it is okay to let loose, and tonight we’re letting loose!” I was really happy to hear that she wasn’t just a party girl because if she was, we probably would not have a whole lot in common.
Katie had a gleam in her eye when she talked about boys and I knew she would be a lot of fun to scope out guys with. She had a perfect body which made me green with envy, and she was stunning on top of it. Some people have all the luck. I may have been a little bit envious but I couldn’t be jealous of her because she was so sweet.
Don’t get me wrong; I was no slouch, not at all. I was a very pretty girl, I had medium length, nearly jet black hair, green eyes, and I had no problem turning heads when I walked down the street. But I could stand to lose a couple of pounds. They were stubborn and no matter what I did, they stuck with me.
Katie and I were unpacking and chatting when two girls came to our room.
“Hey you guys, I’m Amy and this is Jenn. A bunch of us girls were thinking of going to grab something to eat in the cafeteria if you want to come along.”
Katie and I both agreed we were starving so we went grabbed our IDs and joined the group that was waiting in the hall. We lived in a co-ed dorm so we had a chance to see some of the guys as we were leaving. Katie linked her arm through mine and we whispered to each other that we were excited there were a lot of cute guys in our dorm. Just as we were leaving the dorm, my eyes landed on the most gorgeous guy I had ever seen in my life, and my breath caught in my throat for just a few seconds. He was playing Frisbee with a bunch of guys and when he jumped in the air to catch the Frisbee, I wished more than anything that was me he was grabbing on to. Wait a second Sky, what are you doing? Guys are off limits! I scolded myself as we all walked to the cafeteria building together, and I pushed the gorgeous guy out of my mind.
We invited a few of the girls to go with us to see the band, and after dinner Katie and I went back to our room to get ready. We were meeting everyone in the lobby at 8:00 and then heading over to the student union , and I was getting excited to go check out this band. I loved live music and I had probably seen over 20 different bands in high school. Everyone seemed super excited about this band and a bunch of people seemed to know who they were so I was psyched about seeing them.
A couple of the girls took forever to get ready so by the time we made it over to the student union it was packed and the band was just about to hit the stage. The lights were dimmed and I heard the bass of a guy’s dramatic voice flood the room through the mic.
“Boston!” Everyone cheered and whistled as the lights went off near the stage.
“Boston! Give it up for Sonic Blaze!”
The drummer started a slow beat as the lights started moving around the room and thunderous claps along with screams and whistles echoed throughout the room. I turned and grinned at Katie as we craned our necks to find an open spot closer to the stage. I saw an empty area right by the stage and quickly grabbed her hand and pulled her with me so that we could have a better spot.
The lead singer was looking down at the ground and I couldn’t get a good look at his face, but his body was sick. He must have been at least 6’1” and his strong thighs filled his jeans perfectly as the cuffs of his t-shirt strained against his ripped arms. He wore a single long chain with a cross, a leather cuff bracelet and a thick silver ring on his middle finger. His guitar was slung over his shoulder and I couldn’t see what he looked like but I wanted to climb up on that stage and rip his clothes off. I had never been so strongly physically attracted to anyone in my life. When I heard his deep, rich voice penetrate the air it made me shudder as I imagined him singing directly to me.
The lights came on around the stage and I sucked in a deep breath and let it out slowly as my eyes climbed all over his gorgeous face. He was breathtakingly beautiful. Dark hair that was just long enough that I wanted to run my fingers through, a strong chiseled jaw and full lips. I couldn’t see the color of his eyes but every other bit of him that I could see was gorgeous. His voice was so mesmerizing that everyone else in the room disappeared as I zeroed in on just him. His eyes cut to the left of the room and he seemed to be smiling at someone and then his eyes moved to the right and he smiled at someone else. Both hands covered the mic as he closed his eyes and belted out the chorus of the song and I could not take my eyes off of him. When he opened his eyes he glanced down at Katie and then me, and his eyes did a double take. Those gorgeous eyes caught and held mine and I felt heat flush my cheeks as he continued singing to me. I was thankful that it was too dark for anyone to notice I was blushing at the gorgeous guy on stage whose gaze was set on me.
After what seemed like an eternity he tore his eyes from mine, and Katie grabbed my arm jumping up and down and grinning at me.
“Oh my god Sky, he was looking right at you, he’s so hot!” She was shouting at the top of her lungs.
I was totally lost in the music and it was a mixture between rock and a couple of ballads. His fingers glided over the taut strings of his guitar and he made the room vibrate. The band played for 45 minutes and then took a quick five minute break. I was getting sweaty and thirsty from all of my jumping around and dancing so Katie and I quickly ran into the hall to get a few sips of water from the water fountain since the vending machines were mobbed. By the time we got there at least 30 other people had the same idea, so we had to wait. I heard the band starting again as we were still waiting in line and I was dying to get back inside to see Mr. Gorgeous. The band was not just good, they were awesome and I would have paid money to see them perform at a stadium.
“Katie, that band is amazing!”
“Aren’t they awesome? I guess they play all over Massachusetts, that’s what Jenn told me. How about that hottie lead singer?”
“I know, right? He’s gorgeous!”
“I’ll have to get all of the info on him because I think he likes you, he couldn’t take his eyes off of you Sky!”
“Oh please, he’s a the lead singer of a band, they’re supposed to make every girl in the room feel like she’s the only one. Yeah, he looked at me, but he looked at you and a hundred other girls. That’s what they do. I’m sure a guy like that is beating girls off with a stick, in fact, I bet I can guarantee it. But he is gorgeous and he can sing, I’ll give him that!”
We both erupted in giggles as we moved our way closer to the drinking fountain. Katie stomped her foot and whined as she heard them finish a song. “Oh man, we’re going to miss the show! Can you guys please hurry?”
A few seconds later the ice cold water slid down my throat, quenching my thirst, and then it was Katie’s turn. She gulped down a few sips and we ran back to the concert and made our way as close as we could to the front. Our perfect spot was gone so we just started dancing and continued to enjoy the concert. The band played a few more songs and then they called it a night. It was a short concert, not the kind they usually played, because it was a quick treat for new and returning students who showed up the first day.
Mr. Gorgeous thanked everyone for coming and told us he’d see us at the Fall Festival in a few weeks. That was a campus-wide event that took place over a weekend right after our first trimester finals. I made a mental note to be at that concert and I wasn’t going to miss it for anything.
Katie and I met up with the rest of the girls and we all made our way back to the dorm and everyone came to hang out in our room for a bit. We were all gushing over the lead singer and as I sat there I realized that I sounded like a groupie. Every girl in that room felt the way I did about him and I didn’t like that. I decided it was best just to keep my feelings to myself because I didn’t want to be lumped in with everybody else. He obviously had a ton of girls after him and I was not going to jump on that bandwagon. Yeah, he was hot, but I was sure that he knew that and he was probably super conceited. Guys who looked like that usually were. Oh well, I would just have to enjoy the band from a distance, and that was fine with me. I had no room in my heart for a guy at that time anyway. But I had to admit that the concert that night was a welcome distraction and it made me even more excited about college.
“It’s pretty cool so far. I’m on this one, the first floor. Which floor are you on?”
“I am one floor down, the guys nicknamed it the dungeon.”
“It can’t be that bad.” I felt so comfortable talking with him, it was as if we had known each other forever. But I had to admit it was really hard not to gawk at his beautiful face.
“Nah, it’s really not, I actually like it. It’s so different from what I’m used to.”
“Oh really? And what are you used to?” My curiosity was getting the best of me and I hoped I didn’t sound like I was prying.
I saw a shift in his eyes and he looked visibly uncomfortable and then completely changed the subject. Okay, guess he doesn't want to share that info, at least not yet.
“So how long have you lived in Chicago?” His voice was pure butter as his gorgeous dark eyes held mine.
I found myself tongue-tied again and realized that I was staring at him and not saying anything when I heard him say my name.
I snapped out of it and shook off my embarrassment. “Oh, right, sorry! Um, all my life. We’ve always lived in the city. And you? How long have you lived in New York?”
“Same. All my life.”
“Have you always lived in Manhattan?”
“We have. It’s pretty cool. I couldn’t imagine living anywhere else.” He paused as his eyes roamed over my hair and settled in my eyes.
I started to feel uncomfortable under his stare so I thought of anything to ask him. “So, what year are you Jonathan? Are you a senior?”
“Yep. About half of the R.A.s are juniors and the other half are seniors. I like it because I get to help the new students get acclimated and I get my own room.” He leaned in close as if he was sharing super secret information and held his finger up to his lips. “Don’t tell anyone, but that is the main reason I took this job.” At first I thought he was serious but then he broke out into a wicked grin.
I playfully swatted him on the arm and smiled. “You’re silly! I believed you there for a second.”
“I had to have a little fun with you. Seriously though, if you have any questions or need anything, my door is always open.”
“Thanks.” He seemed really nice and I just wasn’t expecting that from someone so gorgeous.
My stomach growled and I quickly clasped my hand over it hoping to muffle the sound but not doing a very good job. He raised his eyebrows and a small smile turned up the corner of his mouth.
“Sounds like someone is hungry.”
I could feel my cheeks getting warm and I wished so badly that my body didn’t react that way because it was so hard to hide. Instead of wallowing in my embarrassment I decided to just ignore it and smiled back.
“I am a little bit. I was actually on my way to grab something from the vending machine.”
“Oh, I didn’t mean to hold you back from your snack. If I had known that you were so hungry I wouldn’t have stopped you. Let me make it up to you by treating you to anything you want from the vending machine.”
I wanted to pinch myself because this gorgeous guy did not seem to want to leave my side!
We walked down to the vending machine and Jonathan was very sweet and let me pick out anything I wanted. I didn't want to look like a pig so I picked a bag of pretzels and nothing else, but it felt good to have him right next to me and it also felt really natural. I didn't want our time together to end but I still had a little bit of unpacking to do so I told him I was going to go back to my room.
“Do you mind if I walk you to your room?”
Do I mind? You can come in and stay! “Not at all, thanks.”
He walked me to my room and we were standing outside my door chatting about the classes we had that next week when Katie walked up behind him. She mouthed “Oh my god” and I had to stop myself from giggling at her look of amazement.
“Oh, hi guys.” She tried to sound nonchalant but I could hear an edge of excitement in her voice.
I felt of pang of apprehension about Jonathan talking to Katie. She was so pretty and I was sure that my time with him would be over once he looked at her, but he glanced at her and said hi and then turned his full attention back to me. He was barely fazed by her looks which shocked me because Katie was stunning, like super model stunning. She stood there anxiously waiting for me to formally introduce them so I reluctantly did so.
“Jonathan, this is my roommate Katie, Katie, you’ve met our R.A. Jonathan.”
“Yeah, hi.” She looked like a star struck tween and it was so cute and funny.
“Hey, so how are you liking it here so far Katie?”
Katie turned into a giggly tween right in front of my eyes. “Oh I love it! I can’t wait for all the parties!” She looked mortified and she quickly slapped her hand over her mouth as she stared at Jonathan with wide eyes, and then she dropped her hand. “I didn’t mean for that to come out like that. What I meant to say was I’m excited about everything, but I know that studying come first.”
Jonathan let out a soft chuckle. “Don’t worry about it, everyone needs to have fun once in a while. Would you agree Skylar?” I don’t know if he was trying to flirt with me but I felt the whole room disappear as he looked at me, his eyes so focused on me. I couldn’t even get so much as a sound to come out of my mouth. Thank goodness Katie was a chatterbox!
“Hey, your band was amazing last night, we had a really good time.” I was really proud of Katie for restraining herself from jumping on Jonathan because she looked like she wanted to pounce.
“Thanks, I appreciate that. I’m glad you enjoyed the show. I was telling Skylar that we play at a spot in town every other week. You guys should come check out a show.” His gaze slid directly to mine and I could feel butterflies playing in my belly.
I thought Katie was going to burst a vein, she was so excited. She tried her best to act cool but it wasn’t really working.
“Oh definitely, we’ll be there. You guys were so awesome I could listen to you all day every day!”
“Cool.” He seemed totally unfazed by her giddiness.
Katie rambled on. “So Jonathan, where are you from? Oh wait, that’s right! You already told the room that you are from New York City. Silly me!”
I really didn’t think that Katie had this goofy side to her and it was good to see that she wasn’t totally perfect. Katie couldn’t stop grinning at him so to help her save a little face, I told him that I should get to bed. Katie snapped out of her daze and told Jonathan it was nice to meet him and she ducked into our room.
He stood looking at me and his gaze was so intense it felt like his eyes were going to burn a hole right through me.
“It was nice to meet you Skylar Miller, you intrigue me.”
I felt butterflies fluttering in my belly and yet again I was tongue-tied. He had an intensity that was palpable and I was so physically drawn to him that I wanted to feel his lips on mine right then and there. I had to say something because I was standing there like a star struck tween myself, so I gave him my best smile.
“It was nice to meet you too Jonathan. I’m sure I’ll see you around, have a good night.”
I went into my room and closed the door before he had a chance to respond to me. I didn’t want him to know how much he affected me and I was sure that if I stood there much longer it would be written all over my face. Besides, it was good for him to see that just because I intrigued him, it didn’t mean I would be putty in his hands, even though it was the truth. He couldn’t know that he had the upper hand here, at least not yet. I would have to make him chase me a little bit, right?
Katie nearly jumped on me when I entered our room.
“Oh my gosh, Sky! Jonathan Hunter? The lead singer of Sonic Blaze? He is so hot!” Her face was beaming as she grabbed my arm and pulled me down to sit on her bed. “Tell me everything! What did you guys talk about?”
I couldn’t help but giggle at her excitement because I was feeling the exact same way but I tried to keep my cool. It didn’t work. “I know! Right? He is so hot! He also seems to be a nice guy.”
“How did you guys start talking?”
“He stopped me on my way to the vending machine and we just started chatting.”
The next day passed in a blur as I tried to get acclimated around campus and figure out where all of my classes were going to be the following week. There was still a lot of chaos on campus as the rest of the students arrived that day. After dinner I took a short nap and Katie woke me right before the meeting. Our dorm was having its first meeting that night and we were all supposed to meet in the lounge area in the lobby at 8:00. Our entire dorm was gathered in the lounge, some sitting and some leaning against the wall, and it was really awesome to be able to get a look at everyone.
We were in one of the smaller dorms so there were about 100 people in ours. Not to sound conceited, I was the furthest thing from it, but when I looked around I noticed that there were not very many pretty girls in the room. Katie and I were easily the most attractive girls in the dorm. Not that it meant anything, I just noticed that Katie with her sun kissed blonde hair and perfect tan and me with my nearly jet black hair and olive skin, stood out among the crowd. I was chatting with Jenn when out of the corner of my eye I saw the really cute guy from Frisbee walk in; I mean he was drop dead gorgeous and I heard a scatter of excited whispers from the girls in the room. He must have been at least 6’1”, he had dark hair and dark eyes, and had that chiseled jaw thing going on. I could barely breathe as I watched him walk over to a bunch of the guys.
“Jenn, who is that super hot guy?” I whispered so that no one else could hear me.
I saw her glance at him and noticed the gleam in her eye when she realized who I was looking at. “That’s the lead singer of the band!” She whispered in a frantic, excited tone.
I froze as I realized Mr. Gorgeous was in the same room as me, and I could barely breathe. Suddenly he was standing in front of us addressing the room and the sound of his voice snapped me out of my daze.
“Okay guys, we’re going to get started! My name is Jonathan Hunter, and I will be your R.A. this year. We hope that you are all starting to settle in and you are beginning to find your way around campus. You will have your individual meeting with me later this week. It’s no big deal, just a few minutes to tell me a little bit about yourself and what you hope to accomplish this year.”
Wait, what? Mr. Gorgeous, Mr. Hottie, Mr. Lead Singer was our Resident Advisor? I had to literally silently tell myself to remain calm. I hated to admit it but I was on pins and needles waiting to hear more, and as I glanced around the room I noticed that several other girls looked as eager as I felt to hear more of what he had to say. He went on to tell us all of the happenings on campus that week and then he had all of us go around and briefly introduce ourselves. “I’ll start. Like I said, I’m Jonathan, and I am from Manhattan.”
A kind of quiet appreciation fell over the room as the girls seemed to literally swoon. His velvety deep voice was even sexier than the voice I’d heard the night before.
I didn’t hear anyone else after he spoke and his name kept playing over and over in my head until I felt Katie nudge me. I snapped out of my reverie and was completely confused as to why she was nudging me repeatedly until I glanced around the room and noticed that everyone was staring at me. Oh my gosh! It’s my turn!
I felt so silly and I could feel my cheeks burning as I’m sure they turned crimson red with all eyes on me. I tried to play it off and act like I wasn’t as flustered as I felt.
I waved my hand, in a short wave, to the room. “Hi, I’m Skylar Miller and I am from Chicago.”
I felt relieved when my turn was over and I was just beginning to relax a bit when Mr. Gorgeous caught me off guard.
“City or suburbs?” His eyes had me spellbound and for just a second, there was no one else in the room. I couldn’t believe he was actually talking to me!
“City, right in the middle of it all.”
“Me too.” His eyes held mine and the heat between us was palpable.
The room was silent for a little bit too long and I could feel all eyes on us. Thankfully he kept it moving by having Jenn, who was sitting on the other side of me, pick up where I left off.
Katie leaned over and whispered to me so that no one else could hear her. “What was that all about with Mr. Hottie?”
“I have no idea, but he is so gorgeous isn’t he?” My voice had a bit of a lilt when I talked about him and it was really hard to hide my excitement.
“He is beautiful! I told you he’s into you Sky.” She gently leaned into me, nudging me, as her words hung in the air.
“No, he was just being nice.” I tried to sound nonchalant as I shot down her suggestion, but I secretly hoped that it was true, and then silently scolded myself. This is not part of the plan!
“Oh really? Then why can’t he take his eyes off of you?”
I glanced in his direction and his eyes were fixated on me. I normally wasn’t a shy person, but I suddenly felt very shy with him totally staring at me for the second time in as many days. Oh my gosh, he is so hot! I tore my eyes away from his when I realized that everyone was getting up and leaving the room.
Katie was chatting with a girl next to her and Jenn was talking with a guy next to her so we were all still sitting on the ground. I wanted to get a snack from the vending machine, so I got up and told Katie I would see her back in our room. As I walked toward the stairs, Jonathan was standing there. My heart was hammering against my chest and my mouth went completely dry, as I got closer to him. I had to stop myself from turning around to look behind me to see who he was looking at because those gorgeous eyes were trained right on me. He smiled at me and I swear it felt like all time had stopped as I walked up to him. Don’t get sucked in Sky, he probably is like this with every new girl he meets.
“Hi, Skylar right?” Are you kidding me with that gorgeous face?
“Hi, yeah, but my friends call me Sky. It’s Jonathan, right? Weren’t you in the band I saw last night?” I am weak. Everything I told myself about guys went flying out the window.
He smiled at me and I don’t know that I’d ever seen anyone more beautiful. “Yeah, that was me. How did you like it?”
“You guys were amazing, I had a really good time.” I smiled at him.
“Good, I’m glad. I’ve been singing with them since we were all freshmen and I’m hoping that we still sounded decent.”
“Honestly Jonathan, I’ve been to a ton of concerts and seen a ton of bands, and you guys were easily one of the top three that I’ve seen.”
“Hmmm, top three, huh? What do we have to do to be number one?”
I was so tongue-tied I didn’t know what to say. I was actually standing there talking to the lead singer of Sonic Blaze and easily the most gorgeous guy I had ever seen, and I was a frozen mess. I never thought a guy to get to me like he did. It must have shown on my face because Jonathan looked concerned.
“Hey, I’m just teasing you. It means a lot that you think we’re top three, especially since you live in a big city. I’m sure you’ve seen some really cool bands in Chicago.”
Him saying that put me at ease and thankfully my brain started to work again. “Yeah, seriously, I thought you guys were really good and I can’t wait to see you guys again at Fall Festival.”
“We play at a spot in town every other Friday if you want to check us out sooner. I’ll let you know the schedule as soon as we get it.”
“Okay, cool, thanks.” This cannot really be happening right now.
“So Skylar, your friends call you Sky, huh?”
“Um, yeah.” I didn’t know where he was going with that.
“Well, maybe if you let me become your friend I can call you Sky also.” There was a bit of a twinkle in his eye and he was so incredibly adorable.
I smiled at him. “I think there could possibly be a very good chance of that.” I normally was not the flirtatious type but I couldn’t help myself, he was so good-looking!
He grinned and had the most perfect smile. “Oh really? Awesome. So, college isn’t so bad so far, huh? Which floor are you on?” She looked at me, her eyes studying me, and a mischievous smile touched the corner of her mouth. “I could tell that he was interested in you when he couldn’t take his eyes off of you last night at the concert and in the dorm meeting! Can you believe he’s our RA?”
“Katie, a guy like that can have any girl he wants at the snap of a finger. I think he’s just a nice guy and he wanted to chat with someone who was from another big city. He probably thought we would have stuff in common because of that and I’m sure he just wanted to talk about living in a big city. He also wants to promote his band.” Even as I said the words I knew they sounded ridiculous. Katie sat there looking at me with crossed arms, one eyebrow raised, not saying a word.
“Okay, okay, I know that sounds silly and that probably wasn’t the reason. He’s a nice guy but I don’t think there is anything to read into it.” I left out the part about him telling me I intrigued him and how the butterflies fluttered like mad when he looked at me. I wanted to keep that for myself.
“Well the school year just started, so let’s see what happens.” She looked at me with a mischievous gleam in her eye. “You know who he is don’t you?”
I stood there giving her a curious look. Were we on the same planet? “Um yeah, his name is Jonathan Hunter.”
“No silly, I mean do you know who he is?”
“Katie, you are totally confusing me. What am I missing?”
“Sky, that is Jonathan Hunter of Hunter International. You’ve heard of that company haven’t you?”
Oh my gosh! Everyone knew about that investment firm, they had offices all over the world. Suddenly my excitement about the hot guy I had just spent the last hour with turned to apprehension.
“Wow, I had no idea he was a Hunter, well, at least not that Hunter. His family has gazillions of dollars. I am actually in shock.”
Katie was completely oblivious to my changed mood. “I predict that this is going to be a very special year for you!”
I didn’t say anything, I just thought about what she said as I finished unpacking. We were done putting our stuff away at about the same time and then we turned in because it was getting late. Katie turned out the lights and then hopped into her bed as I was getting settled in mine. Jonathan Hunter’s family were billionaires, there was no way a guy like that would ever look twice at a girl like me. He probably thought I came from money too since nearly everyone at that school did. The second he found out that my blood wasn’t blue, I was sure he would be on to the next one. I started to drift off pretty quickly feeling bummed about what I thought would have been something good. It was just as well, I was sure he had tons of girls on his roster. I needed to remember that my heart was fragile, and I had no desire to have it broken again. The sound of Katie’s whisper gently roused me from my beginning slumber.
“Yeah?” My voice was a bit groggy and it had traces of sleep masking it.
“I’m so glad I got you as a roommate. We’re going to have a great year.”
She was a really sweet girl and I felt just as happy that we were paired up.
“We sure are.” That was the last thing I remembered before drifting off to sleep.
The next day a bunch of us checked out the campus to get a feel for where our classes would be, where the gym was and where the library was. We decided to go off campus for lunch and as we were walking back we saw a group of guys walking toward us. Katie linked her arm through mine and whispered in my ear.
“Look who’s coming this way.”
My stomach literally flipped as I saw talk, dark and gorgeous walking toward me. And he saw me too. Once again I was so totally mesmerized by his intense gaze that I was really thankful that Katie was linked to me. I don’t know that I would have been able to continue to put one foot in front of the other if she wasn’t next to me walking with me. The guys approached and we stopped to talk to them. Some people knew each other so they made introductions for everyone else and Jonathan walked right up to me, his eyes not letting go of mine.
Yep, definitely a voice like butter.
I smiled at him and tried to really hard to sound nonchalant. “Hey Jonathan. Where are you guys going?”
“There’s some pizza place that is supposed to be incredible that’s not too far away, so we’re gonna go check that out. Where are you guys coming from?”
“That same pizza place.” I giggled because I thought it was so funny that we all had the same idea.
“Oh good, someone has tried it, so how was it?”
“It was really good and there wasn’t one piece of pizza left on anyone’s plate.”
“Awesome, can’t wait to try it.”
I couldn’t help but feel excited about him even if he was way out of my league. I decided that I was going to enjoy the flirtation as long as it lasted. I was pretty sure it would be short lived as soon as he figured out I was here on scholarship, but I decided to live the fantasy for a while.
Jonathan’s eyes were perusing my face and I started to feel really shy as his eyes studied mine with a sharp intensity. He was so good-looking it was hard to concentrate on anything else, so when I felt Katie tugging on my arm I had to tear my eyes away from his to see what she wanted.
“We’re going back to campus now and those guys are going to go eat.”
“Oh! Sorry, to keep you Jonathan, I’m sure you’re probably really hungry.”
My words hung in the air for a few seconds as he held my gaze and a tiny smirk danced at the corner of his mouth. He leaned down and whispered in my ear so that only I could hear him. “I am, but not in the way that you think. I’ll see you later.”
As he walked off with his friends, my cheeks instantly felt like they were on fire and my breathing became very shallow as I contemplated the meaning behind his words. I didn’t realize that I was walking down the sidewalk with a goofy grin on my face until I heard Katie’s words.
“Somebody is really into you and it looks like you feel the same way. Are your cheeks okay?”
My hands flew to my cheeks and I looked at her with eyes like saucers. “I don’t know what you mean.”
“Well for starters they are the color of my shirt,” she looked at me as she tugged on her bright red V-neck, “and secondly you’ve had a huge grin on your face since Jonathan walked up to us; that’s what I mean. Sky, girlie, he is into you. I wish a guy would look at me like that!”
I thought about what she said as we walked back to campus. I knew he was flirting with me but I couldn’t focus too much on that. I was convinced that he was the kind of guy who could have any girl, I was probably just his first distraction for the school year, and I was sure there would be many more girls after me especially after he found out how different I was from him. I couldn’t let myself get too caught up in him. He was so gorgeous and I doubted that I was the kind of girl he really wanted, someone who looked like Katie and had her family’s money was probably more his type. Jonathan Hunter was becoming a huge distraction for me and I had to get that under control because I felt my crush on him deepening every time I saw him.
We made it back to campus and a bunch of us went to the student union to hang out and have some fun since we were still in the middle of Freshmen Week. We had a couple more days of freedom and I was playing pool a couple of hours later, and it was my turn to make a shot, when I felt someone come up behind me. Jonathan’s familiar deep voice whispered in my ear and the hairs on my arms stood on end as I felt his arms come around me as he adjusted the way I was holding the pool cue.
“You might want to try it this way and then hit the ball with a light, but firm stroke.”
I wanted to just melt into his arms and have him wrap them around me, holding me tight. I was so happy that he was there. I don’t know how I was able to make the shot because I could barely focus with him so close to me, but I got it in the hole.
I turned to look at him and smiled when my eyes met his and I had to stop myself from letting out a huge sigh. You’re so gorgeous. “Thanks for the tip. You must be pretty good at this game, huh?” I tried so hard to hide the way my body was feeling, as I was sure my cheeks were the dead give away.
His eyes held mine as he stood less than a foot away from me and then they traveled down to my mouth and lingered for a minute before going back up to my eyes.
“I guess I’m okay. You take direction well Skylar, I like that.”
I looked at him and cocked my head to the side, my long dark waves falling on my shoulder. “Only when I want to.”
I then slowly walked away to get a soda from the vending machine, glancing at him with a flirtatious twinkle in my eye. I knew he would follow me and as I stood in front of the vending machine an awareness of his body heat seeped into all of my pores as I pretended to be deep in thought about which drink I was going to buy.
His body pressed lightly against mine as he leaned over my shoulder and whispered in my ear.
“You drive me crazy, you know that?”
I turned my head slightly to the side and whispered so that only he could hear me.
“I hope so.”
“Come with me for a minute.” Although he whispered, his words were gruff and left no room for question and I dutifully followed him into a secluded alcove down the hall from everyone else. He turned into a dark corner and pulled me to him. My heart was beating a million miles a minute, my breath catching in my throat as I looked up into his gorgeous eyes.
“You’re so sexy Skylar.”
His eyes roamed over my body and I could feel my body flush with desire. He entwined his fingers in my hair and his eyes perused my face and settled on my lips. He leaned down, bringing my face to his, and gave me a soft peck at first and then his lips were searching and eager as I opened my mouth and our tongues slid over each other. Jonathan pulled me even closer and I could feel his hard length as a soft moan escaped my lips, my hardened nipp**les straining through my bra. His touch became more rough as his hands slid down my body to my hips and then around to my plump backside. He pulled my hips into his as he kissed me deeper, his scruff lightly scraping my face. His scent was intoxicating and I wanted to just melt into him as his tongue explored my mouth. His hands tightened in my hair and he suddenly pulled away from me and looked at me, desire burning in his eyes.
“I want to taste every inch of you Skylar, but it’s not time for that yet. We better get back to the others before people start to talk.”
I wanted him right then and there, and then I silently scolded myself. You just met this guy and you’re willing to jump into bed with him already? If he wasn’t so damned sexy it would be a lot easier for me.
Jonathan adjusted himself and smoothed his hair as I composed myself. Luckily no one saw us and as we walked back to the student union , I kept asking myself if what happened had really just happened. Jonathan lightly touched my hip and gave me a quick wink before joining his buddies at the foosball table. Katie saw us walk in together and her eyes were as big as saucers as she made a beeline for me.
“So, where did you guys run off to? I couldn’t find you for quite a while.”
I looked at her, blinking my lashes innocently. “I have no idea what you’re talking about, we were around the whole time.”
Katie narrowed her eyes at me while a tiny smirk curved the corner of her mouth. “Okay, I get it, you don’t want to tell. I’ll let it go for now, but if anything big happens between you two I better be the first person you tell!”
I giggled at her and promised she would be the first.
We decided to play air hockey and I was kicking her butt when I heard a loud obnoxious cackle permeate the air. I turned to see who was attached to the atrocious laugh and I could feel my blood begin to boil when I saw what looked like a straight up po**rn star with enormous fake boobs hanging all over Jonathan. I looked at Jonathan’s face and I could see that he didn’t look annoyed and that pissed me off. He actually looked like he was enjoying the attention. Is that his type? Does he have a girlfriend? Why did he kiss me if he has a girlfriend? Are all guys cheaters? I turned to look at Katie with a look of disgust on my face and gestured with my head in their direction.
“Who is boobs McGee over there?” I tried really hard for the question to sound matter of fact and I hoped that I had been able to pull that off.
Her ti**ts were enormous and she was totally busting out of her tank top.
Katie rolled her eyes at the girl who was making a complete spectacle of herself, practically throwing herself at Jonathan, and turned to me with raised eyebrows. I could tell that she was annoyed.
“That’s Barbi with an i.”
I burst out laughing and Katie had a look of mock seriousness on her face. “No, really, she told us that it was very important that we understand that her name is not spelled the same way as the doll and it is spelled with an i. So whatever you do don’t forget, it’s Barbi with an i. Oh, and she let us all know that she is originally from Beverly Hills.”
“Oh my gosh, we’re going to have to put up with that all year? Really? I know I shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but I’m having a really hard time believing that that has any type of brain. So how did she get into our university?”
“Funny, you’re not the first person to ask that, Amanda asked the same thing. Apparently her daddy’s money purchased an entire wing in the library and a building for the English department. So basically her family’s money bought her way in.”
“Who’s her father?”
Katie shrugged her shoulders. “No clue.”
I scowled when I realized that she wasn't going to go away. The more I looked at them laughing with each other, the more upset I could feel myself becoming. Was this guy trying to play me? Maybe Jonathan was just a player, he certainly had the looks for it, but I had no interest in being part of his little game. Been there, done that, and I wasn’t doing it again. I looked over at them again and he was smiling at whatever it was she was whispering in his ear, and if she were any closer to him it would be hard to tell where her body stopped and his started. I felt a pang in my stomach. How could I have been so stupid?
I realized that I was getting way ahead of myself so I had to pull back a bit, regroup, and remember that I had only known this guy for two days. I didn’t like it but, he was perfectly free to hang out or whatever with any girl if he wanted to, but if bimbo was his girlfriend I wanted nothing to do with him. I must have been staring in their direction for a long time because when I snapped out of my state of pissed offedness, I noticed that Jonathan was staring at me with a curious, yet intense, stare. I quickly turned away because I didn’t want him to see that I was watching him, but not before I saw Barbi plant a kiss on his cheek.
If “bimbo” was his type, then he had no business even looking in my direction. I know it wasn’t nice to think about her in that way but I had to make myself feel better somehow. It was almost dinnertime so Katie and I decided to head over to the cafeteria, and we were walking out of the student union when Jonathan grabbed my arm as I was on my way out of the student union .
“Leaving so soon?” My skin felt on fire under his touch.
I shot him a cool glance and looked down at my arm where his hand held me, and then back up at him and raised my eyebrows. He held my gaze as defiance brewed in his eyes and he held a firm grip. I was pretty good at the stern glance and I couldn’t recall a time when it didn’t work, until now.
“You’re not speaking to me Skylar?”
I could see Katie staring at us taking it all in and I began to squirm because I felt really uncomfortable and I knew she would be interrogating me about him later.
I continued to give him a cool stare as I answered him. “It looked like you had no problem finding someone to speak to you earlier Jonathan. It’s really not a good look for you to have a bimbo hanging all over you. You should tell your trampy girlfriend that it is un-lady like to throw herself at a guy, it’s so déclassé.” The words rolled off of my tongue before I could stop them.
I could see a spark of fire flash across his eyes as he held my gaze for what felt like an eternity, and then he leaned down to whisper in my ear. “I thought you were different Skylar, apparently I was wrong.” With that, he released his grip on my arm and walked away.
I instantly felt horrible about what I had just said. Wait, why am I feeling bad? He’s trying to cheat on his girlfriend with me! The whole thing was not cool and I felt myself getting more and more pissed. He was not going to kiss me in private one minute and then have his girlfriend hang all over him in public! I wanted no part of any of that. I turned to see Katie’s look of amazement and I thought, cue the interrogation.
“Oh my gosh Sky, what just happened between you two was so sexy! He is definitely hot for you girl, you guys have this super hot chemistry. What did he whisper in your ear?”
“Katie, he is not hot for me, I think he’s trying to have his cake and eat it too. That girl is his girlfriend! Didn’t you see them together? She was hanging all over him and he seemed to like it. I didn’t see him objecting, did you?”
Katie turned her nose up in disgust. “Oh please! You think a guy like Jonathan would have that as his girlfriend?” She rolled her eyes. “Not in a million years.”
“Katie, I saw them together and he looked pretty happy with her. Ugh, guys suck!” I waved my hand in the air to change the subject. “Enough about him, I’m starving! Let’s go eat dinner.”
Thankfully Katie dropped it because I really wasn’t ready to share how much I already liked him. Jonathan Hunter was nothing like any guy I had ever met and I could feel myself starting to fall hard. It was the craziest thing, I had just met him and I could not stop thinking about him, but I would have to because he was taken. Maybe Seth cheating on me threw off my jerk radar. I was going to have to just push Jonathan out of my mind. Yeah, Sky, good luck with that. If only the memory of his kiss and his touch would stop flooding my mind. I couldn’t wait for classes to start so that I could throw myself into my schoolwork and forget that I had ever met a gorgeous guy named Jonathan Hunter.
I was so excited when Monday morning came because I’d had a really hard Sunday trying to get Jonathan out of my mind. I was ready to start new and diving into school was the perfect solution. I had a few classes with Katie and Jenn that week and thankfully my schedule seemed to coincide with Jonathan’s because I did not see him for three whole days.
On Wednesday, when I went back to my room after my last class, I checked my email and I had a message from the Dean. When I opened it, I felt a pit in my stomach as I read the message:
Ms. Miller, your individual appointment with your Resident Advisor is scheduled for Thursday at 4:00 in the 1st floor meeting room of your dormitory.
I had completely forgotten about that meeting and I was dreading seeing him alone. I was sure he was upset with me and I knew that I was definitely upset with him. He was a cheater and I didn’t like that. He needed to focus all of his attention on that bimbo girlfriend of his instead letting his eyes wander in my direction. I deleted the email because I didn’t want any reminders of Jonathan around. I just wanted to get the meeting over with.
I grabbed my backpack and headed to the cafeteria to meet a few of the girls for dinner. After dinner I went to the library, found a quiet spot, pulled out my laptop and immersed myself in my books. At around 11:30 I found myself reading the same paragraph three times and I felt my eyelids getting heavy so I packed up my stuff and left. As I made my way toward the quad, I ran right into Jonathan as he was also walking toward the quad.
Under the bright lights of the walking path, I could see his eyes light up and then quickly go blank as he saw me. Oh great. I was not in the mood to see him just yet. He walked up beside me and started walking with me without even asking if it was okay. I hated to admit it but I felt safer with him by my side, but I would never let him know that.
“I think you’re walking with the wrong girl, where is your girlfriend Jonathan?”
I cut my eyes sideways at him and saw him set his jaw, clearly annoyed at my question.
“It is late and you shouldn’t be out here by yourself.” His tone was terse as he ground out the words.
“I can take care of myself just fine Jonathan Hunter, I don’t need you to protect me.” I let out a loud huff and sped up, trying to get away from him.
His stride increased with mine keeping pace with me and I couldn’t shake him.
“I’m sure you can take care of yourself Skylar, but I am not going to let you walk back to the dorm alone at this hour, so just slow down and let me walk with you!”
I stopped in my tracks and turned to him, glaring into his eyes.
“I do not want to be around you, don’t you get it! Now go away and leave me alone!” I spun on my heel and stalked off but Jonathan caught up with me in two seconds and grabbed my arm spinning me around to face him.
“I am not going to leave you alone at this hour, that is not going to happen!” He let go of me and ran his hands through his hair in frustration, looking at me with almost desperate eyes. “I don’t know what it is about you, but I can’t leave you alone Sky, I just can’t.” He gathered me in his arms and his lips came crashing down on mine. My knees nearly betrayed me and I began to feel them buckle as I reveled in his kiss. My stomach did somersaults as I decided to follow my heart and not my head. His fingers laced through my hair holding my head so that he could devour me with kisses. His tongue slid over mine and he gently sucked on my bottom lip, teasing my lips with his tongue. I let out a soft moan as my arms crawled up around his neck, pulling him closer, feeling his arousal and pressing my body to his.
We stood there, under the bright lights, completely engulfed in each other when we heard footsteps in the distance. It snapped me back to reality and the realization of what had just happened began to sink in. For just a few minutes I forgot that Jonathan had a girlfriend and for just a few minutes I allowed myself to get lost in him. But then I remembered Barbi and her hanging all over him and him seeming to like it, and I wanted to kick myself for letting him kiss me again.
I pulled away from him and wiped my lips staring at him with a bit of remorse.
“We shouldn’t do that Jonathan, you have a girlfriend.”
“Sky, it is not what you think.”
“Look, I can’t deal with this right now, I’m tired. Let’s just get back to the dorm.” I started walking and he fell in step beside me.
“You have to let me explain.” His voice was intense but I didn’t want to hear any excuses, at least not right then. I was mad at myself for what I had just allowed to happen, but I did want to hear what he had to say for himself eventually. I was so hoping that he wasn’t the cheater that he appeared to be, but I would have to hear him out later. I was thoroughly exhausted.
We walked up to the door of our dorm and he slid his card to buzz us in. As we started to walk toward my room I stopped and turned to him.
“You don’t have to walk me all the way, I’ll be fine from here.” He started to protest but I held up my hand. “Look Jonathan, I’ll listen to what you have to say tomorrow, okay? I’m just really tired right now.”
He reluctantly agreed and I thanked him for walking me back. My growing feelings for him were starting to mess with my head.
Before I could stop him, he leaned down and kissed my cheek, his scruff gently scratching me. “I’ll see you at our meeting tomorrow at 4:00. Sleep well.”
I walked off to my room, trying really hard not float on that cloud that was under my feet. The whole thing would be so much easier if he wasn’t so damned gorgeous and irresistible. I thought about his kisses as I got ready for bed and crashed.
I don’t think I comprehended one thing that was covered in all of my classes the next day because all I could think about was my 4:00 meeting with Jonathan and what he had said to me the night before. His words ‘It’s not what you think’ kept playing over and over in my mind. If it wasn’t what I thought, then what was it? It was so obvious that Barbi was into him and he seemed to like the attention from her, so what was I missing?
I bolted out of my last class when it was over and I rushed back to my room to wash my face and freshen my makeup. Even though I knew I shouldn’t, I wanted to look nice for him. Maybe I had completely misunderstood the whole Barbi thing, I mean he did kiss me again and he said he couldn’t stay away from me. I bounded off to meet him and I allowed myself to feel hopeful about where things could go with us.
As I rounded the corner into the lobby Jonathan was standing in front of the room where we were supposed to be meeting but his back was to me, and it looked like he was talking to someone. As I got closer, I saw the boobs before I saw anything else and my stomach dropped into my toes. It’s not what I think, huh? Barbi was standing about six inches from Jonathan apparently talking so low that he had to lean down to hear her. He had a huge smile on his face and once again he looked perfectly happy to be around her. To anyone who didn’t know them, they looked like they were a couple.
I walked right past both of them without saying a word and went into the room and sat and waited for Jonathan. Since this was a requirement I was going to keep the conversation strictly about school, I wasn’t going to give him any opportunity to make it about anything else. He was trying to play me and I was not one to be played. I needed to get him out of my life before I was in too deep.
Not even five seconds later he was right behind me and he closed the door behind him before sitting at the desk. He sat there for a minute, his eyes perusing all of me and then they settled in mine.
“It’s good to see you Sky.”
I returned his gaze with a cool stare. “What’s the first question you have for me?”
He seemed taken aback by my cold demeanor and I think he could tell that I was not in the mood to play nice and he didn’t push me. He shifted in his chair, glanced down at his notepad and then looked back at me, his eyes betraying what he was feeling. There was a longing there that I did not need to see. It made it much harder to stay mad at him. But all I had to do was remember the scene with Barbi I had walked up to a few minutes earlier, and the angry feelings came back. Why did she have to wear such slutty clothes all the time? It was so trashy to have your ti**ts out all over the place. Focus Sky, Jonathan is talking to you.
“Well?” He sat there waiting for my answer.
“I’m sorry, what did you ask?”
“What three things do you hope to achieve this year?”
“Oh, right. Well, I want to prove to Mr. Cohen that I am a viable candidate for his internship program next year, I want to get straight A’s in all of my classes and I want to have a good year.”
“A good year? What do you mean?”
I gave him a hard look and tried really hard not to narrow my eyes at him. “I mean that I don’t want to have to deal with any bullshit this year. I want the people that I meet this year to show me their true colors from the beginning so that I don’t have to question their motives. I don’t need any distractions while I am trying to focus on school.”
A loud, heavy sigh escaped his lips. “Skylar, if you’re referring to me I have been nothing but honest with you.”
He looked at me and I could see that he was exasperated but in that moment I didn’t care, I knew what I saw when I walked in here and what I had seen too many times in the past week. I pushed my seat back and stood up and looked down at him, annoyance written all over my face.
“Are we done here?”
“Sky, come on, don’t be like this.”
“I’ll take that as a yes.” I grabbed my bag, walked out and it took everything in me not to slam the door.
As I walked back to my room, Barbi was sitting in our lobby and she gave me a sly smirk as I strode past her. I wanted to knock that smirk right off of her plastic face, but I just looked right through her and kept walking.
I buried myself in books for the next few weeks and I was able to avoid Jonathan for a long time. I would occasionally see him leaving the library around the same time he had run into me that one night that he kissed me, and I always waited until he was well out of sight before I left. Thankfully, our library was huge so I was able to barricade myself in a back corner on the seventh floor and none of my friends, including Jonathan, had discovered my special spot.
It was Wednesday night and I was super excited because parents’ weekend started Friday and my parents were coming the next night. I wasn’t as homesick as I thought I would be but I couldn’t wait to see them. It was almost midnight and I had just finished up another long night in the library, and I was smiling to myself thinking about seeing my parents as I waited for the elevator. The doors opened and my smile immediately went cold as my eyes fell upon Jonathan’s gorgeous face. I could see his eyes brighten when he saw me and he was the last person I needed to see. No, no, no! I wanted to turn and bolt but that would have made me look like a coward, I was mature enough to deal with this. I pushed my shoulders back and stepped into the elevator, careful to stand as far away from him as possible. I stood looking straight ahead and did not speak.
I could feel Jonathan looking at me. “Hi Skylar.” If only that voice didn’t sound so sexy.
My belly flipped and it took everything in me not to turn around and throw my arms around him.
“Hello.” My response was curt as I kept my eyes focused on the door in front of me. The elevator seemed to take an eternity to get to the first floor. C’mon elevator, hurry up!
“Are your parents coming this weekend?” He sounded genuinely curious.
“Yes.” My response was once again curt, and I didn’t try to have a conversation with him. The silence was deafening and I had to be on the slowest elevator in history.
“Mine are too.” I could hear sadness in his voice.
I didn’t respond, I just wanted to get out of there.
“Sky, am I so repulsive that you can’t even look at me?”
Hearing him sound like that made me feel awful and I almost dropped my guard, and then the elevator opened.
“There you are!” Boobs McGee was standing there in a black, tight midriff top and even tighter jeans, blonde extensions draped over one shoulder.
Really? I have to see this right now? I gave her a withering look as I stepped off of the elevator and quickly walked out of the library without answering Jonathan’s question and without looking back.
As I climbed into bed a few minutes later, I thought about the elevator and my mind wandered to the look on his face when the elevator opened and he saw me. Why was he looking at me like that if he was taken? There was no way he could try to tell me that girl was not his girlfriend, she was waiting for him at midnight and he didn’t seem at all surprised! Ugh! Jonathan Hunter get out of my head! I stared up at the ceiling in the darkness as thoughts of his soft lips on mine flooded my brain. I wanted so badly to kiss him again and I wished that I didn’t. I was trying my best to stay away from, but how long could I do that before my heart took over? He has a girlfriend, he has a girlfriend, he has a girlfriend. But did he really? I drifted off to sleep dreaming of Jonathan’s kisses.
The next morning I woke up and lay in bed for a few minutes, thinking about my run in with Jonathan and Barbi. Frustrated, I shoved the covers off of me and hopped out of bed. Katie had an 8:00 class that morning so she was already gone. As I reached to open the door to go take a shower down the hall, I noticed an envelope with my name on which had been slipped under our door. I picked it up and closed my door so that I could read it.
I need to talk to you. Meet me in the student union at noon.
I stood there not knowing how to react. On one hand I was super excited that Jonathan wanted to see me, and on the other hand I was confused because if he did have a girlfriend he was being pretty obvious about trying to cheat on her. Did he think he was so incredible that he could get away with doing whatever he wanted? Did he think he could have any girl he wanted at the snap of his finger? His arrogance was starting to piss me off and I could feel the anger boiling up inside of me. He thinks he can just summon me like that? My initial reaction was to just blow him off but I was curious to find out what he had to say for himself. I needed to hear from him why he was pursuing me if he was linked to someone else. I stomped off to the shower and mulled over what to do.
As I was drying my hair, I decided that I would go meet Jonathan, but I was going to go at 12:30 just to see if he would wait for me. If he was sincere, he would be there. I trotted off to class, trying to suppress the nervous butterflies that were building in my belly. When my class was over at 11:50, I took my time making my way over to the student union . I stopped by the library and checked out a couple of books that I needed and I dropped them off in my room. Katie was studying at her desk when I walked in.
“Hey, what are you up to Sky?”
“Jonathan wants me to meet him over at the student union .”
“Really? He’s got a lot of nerve. I see him with Barbi all the time, she’s always hanging all over him. Did he say what he wanted?” Katie didn’t like Jonathan anymore because she thought he was a player.
“No, just that he needed to talk to me.”
She rolled her eyes. “His problem is that he likes you but he’s not single. He needs to make a decision. Either break up with Barbi so that he can be with you, or just leave you alone.”
“I don’t know what his deal is Katie, but it’s driving me nuts. I’m going to go see what he wants, I’ll keep you posted.”
When I walked into the student union it was a little bit after 12:30 and, even though I was late, as I looked around the room I had a sinking feeling because I didn’t see Jonathan anywhere. If he had really wanted to see me he would have waited for me. Just as I turned to leave, Jonathan was right there.
“Fashionably late, huh?” I started to smile at him because I wanted so badly for things to be okay with us but I didn’t want to be a part of his game, so I quickly pursed my lips at him. Why does he have to be so good-looking?
“Did you just get here Jonathan?” I didn’t even try to pretend that I wasn’t annoyed.
“No, I have been waiting here for you since 11:55, I must have been in the bathroom when you walked in. I thought you weren’t coming.” His gaze held mine and I could see a longing in his eyes. “I’m glad you did, thanks for meeting me Sky.”
“I don’t have very long. My parents will be here at 3:30 and I haven’t had lunch yet.”
“Do you want to go grab a bite to eat? I haven’t had lunch yet either.” He looked hopeful and I instantly put the kibosh on that.
“No, Jonathan, I don’t want to go get something to eat with you. What did you want to talk to me about?” I tapped my foot impatiently, waiting for his answer.
He looked uncomfortable as he glanced down at my tapping foot. “Can we please go sit, just for a few minutes? I promise I will be quick.”
I let out a huff and turned toward the crowded room looking for a table. “Fine. How about there?” I pointed to a table a couple of feet away from us.
Jonathan shook his head. “No, there.” He gestured to a secluded corner of the room that had an empty small table.
We walked over and I sat down and crossed my arms waiting for him to speak.
“Sky, you have totally misunderstood what is going on. Barbi is not my girlfriend. I promise you I am not lying about that.”
I studied him trying to see if I could tell if he was telling the truth. He didn’t squirm or look uncomfortable under my stare so maybe he actually was telling the truth.
“It certainly looks like it. Every time I see you she’s hanging all over you, and you don’t seem to mind. So what am I supposed to think?”
He started to speak but my ringing phone interrupted us. It was my mom and I immediately answered because I thought something must have happened since they were supposed to be in the air. She shouldn’t have been calling me.
“Hi mom, is something wrong? Did you guys miss your flight?”
“Oh honey everything is fine and our flight was fine. We’re here at the hotel, did you have lunch yet?”
“You’re here right now? But you guys aren’t supposed to land until 3:30.”
“Oh no, did I say we would be there at 3:30? I was confusing our trip to see you with our trip to see your brother. We landed a little after 10:30. I’m sorry about that Sky. Do you have any more classes today?”
“No, I’m done for the day.” I looked at Jonathan and held his gaze. “I was just wasting time while I waited for you guys. I actually haven’t eaten so I would love to eat with you guys.”
“Okay honey, we will be at your dorm in a few minutes.”
I hung up and pushed my chair back and stood up. “My parents are here so I have to go.”
He grabbed my wrist as he looked up at me and the warmth from his touch was so comforting. “Can we finish this on Sunday night, after parent’s weekend is over?”
I was going to say no but I wanted to see him again, I couldn’t help it. Maybe he was being honest with me about the whole Barbi thing. If she really wasn’t his girlfriend, he would have to talk to her about the way she hangs all over him.
I returned his gaze and held it for a few seconds before answering. “Okay.”
A huge grin spread across his face. “I’ll meet you in the lobby of the dorm at, say 8:00?
“Have fun with your parents. My parents will be here too but I will be available if your parents have any questions about anything.”
“Okay, thanks. See ya.”
“See ya.” His eyes followed me as I left and I glanced behind me once to find him still watching me before turning the corner and leaving the student union .
I couldn’t stop smiling as I hugged my mom and Jay. It was so good to see them. I guess I thought I wasn’t that homesick but once I saw them I realized how much I had missed them.
“I’m so glad you guys are here, thanks for coming!”
“Of course honey! We wouldn’t miss parent’s weekend.”
“We’re starving, where do you want to go eat?”
“Since the festivities don’t officially begin for parents until tomorrow, how does pizza sound? There’s a great place in town.”
“Perfect, let’s go.”
We caught up over lunch and I told them how well I was doing in my classes so far.
“I leave the library at about midnight every night.”
My mom looked worried. “Is it safe to walk back to the dorm by yourself at that hour?”
“It’s fine. My dorm isn’t far from the library and I can always call security if I want an escort back to the dorm.”
“I would feel better if you walked back with a friend or something. Maybe you can study with your roommate and then you guys can walk back together.”
I shook my head at my mom and smiled. “Mom, I’m fine really.”
Jay put his hand over my mother’s hand which was resting on the table. “Skylar is a smart girl honey, I don’t think you have to worry about her, she knows how to take care of herself. You and David taught her well. Of course I wasn’t too shabby either!” My mom giggled at Jay and she seemed to relax and I was so grateful that he was there. He had never said a bad word about my dad and he always mentioned him so that we would know that he knew that my dad was not forgotten. Yeah, Jay was a cool guy. I rubbed the ring on my finger and smiled as I thought about my dad. If he were here he probably would have said exactly what Jay said, or at least pretty close.
“Okay, okay, but just please be careful and aware of your surroundings at all times.” My mom had a worried look in her eye so I put my hand over hers and looked at her and smiled to put her at ease.
“I will mom, I promise.”
That seemed to placate her so we enjoyed the rest of our meal and got ready to go.
“So honey, do you need anything? Should we go shopping for a few things?”
I did need more shampoo and a few other toiletries, but I didn’t want to be a financial burden to them. I knew that the plane tickets were expensive and that my brother and sister bought those for my parents because financially, they were strapped. My brother and sister took turns sending me money each month. It wasn’t much, but it was enough to cover what I needed and to cover the occasional trips to eat out with my friends. I would be getting a check from my sister in few days and I maybe had just enough shampoo to last me that long if I watered it down a little.
“No, I’m fine.”
My mom must have sensed that I needed things. “Sky, we can buy you a few things, it’s okay. What do you need?”
“Well, I do need just a few things and Target is not far from here.”
“Oh good, at least you have something close by.” She looked at Jay. “Okay honey, are we ready?”
As we left the pizza place, I was walking behind them and I smiled to myself, so happy that they were able to come for the weekend. I rubbed my ring and silently told my dad that I knew he was there too.
Target was busy, as usual, and we were in the shampoo aisle and I was bending down to find the right kind of shampoo, when I heard a familiar voice.
“It looks like we had the same idea.”
I looked up to see Jonathan’s gorgeous face smiling down at me and I wanted to melt right into the ground. He looked so gorgeous!
“Hey, yeah, I guess it does.” I was a bit flustered because he caught me off guard, but I managed a feeble smile and suddenly felt very awkward because my parents were standing behind me and I could tell that they were waiting for an introduction. I stood up and turned to them and they both had that look, you know the one where they know this is the guy you like but they don’t want to embarrass you, but they want you to introduce them? Yeah, that look.
“Um, mom, Jay, this is Jonathan Hunter. He’s our Resident Advisor. Jonathan this is my mom, Mrs. Marshall and my step-dad, Jay. ”
My mom smiled and reached out and hugged him and I wanted to die of embarrassment right on the spot, I was totally mortified. Did she really just do that? My mom had been a hugger all of her life and she didn’t care if she just met you, if she got a good vibe from you she gave you a hug. Well, I guess she got a good vibe from Jonathan. “Jonathan it is so nice to meet you!”
I could see that Jonathan’s cheeks turned red and with good reason. I doubted that he was used to getting random hugs from 50-year-old women.
This is not happening right now. “Mom! Couldn’t you just shake his hand?” I rolled my eyes at her as I ground out the words under my breath.
He was clearly taken off guard but he was a good sport. “Oh, it’s okay Sky, your mom gives good hugs! It’s nice to meet you to, Mrs. Marshall, Mr. Marshall.” He shook Jay’s hand and looked him in the eye. I knew that Jay liked that. He used to tell me that if a boy didn’t shake his hand and look him in the eye when he came to pick me up for a date, that I wasn’t going because it meant that the boy didn’t respect me.
“Oh, Jonathan, here you are! Your mother got lost in the candle section and I had to tear her away to come find you!”
A deep, sultry voice permeated the air and I looked up and saw the most gorgeous older man I had ever laid eyes on in my life. I mean, he was absolutely beautiful! The woman beside him, was pretty but not stunning, yet there was something about her that made her stand out and I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. And then I saw them glance at each other and I could see the spark. I really thought I actually saw a physical spark! His eyes were full of love as he quickly leaned down and kissed the side of her head.
“Joshua, you’re being silly. Jonny, don’t listen to your father, it was me that had to drag him out of the tool section, honey.”
I looked at Jonathan and his cheeks were bright red. His parents were embarrassing him!
“Okay guys, settle down, I want you to meet some people. Mom, dad, this is Nancy and Jay Marshall, and this is their daughter, Skylar Miller. Skylar is one my advisees in our dorm, and these are my parents Joshua and Sarah Hunter.” I could hear something in his voice, something was different but I couldn’t quite tell what it was.
His mother seemed to give Jonathan a knowing smile and then turned to us. “Well, it is so nice to meet all of you!”
Hmmm, I wonder what that was about.
“Oh, please call us Nancy and Jay.” My mom was gushing around Jonathan’s dad and I didn’t blame her, he was gorgeous! She wasn’t flirting or anything like that but I could tell she was a little awestruck and it was cute. His wife didn’t seem to mind at all, and the more I thought about it, I was sure she had to be used to that sort of thing.
“Well Nancy, please call us Sarah and Joshua.” Jonathan’s mom had a huge, friendly smile that was infectious.
My mom smiled back at her and I could tell that she liked her. It was nice to see my parents meeting people they wouldn’t normally meet. My mom and Jay tended to stay within their circle of friends and they never really did anything fancy or even daydreamed about it. So I liked that they were meeting people who were so different from them who seemed to be really nice people.
“So Skylar, how do you like school so far?” His mom was so friendly.
“It’s extremely challenging but so far I love it. If you ask me the same question during finals you might get a different answer!”
Jonathan’s dad chimed in. “Don’t worry Skylar, I’m sure you’ll breeze right through finals. I felt the exact same way my freshman year at this very same university. I loved it at first but was really dreading my first final. Just make sure you’re well prepared and you will do just fine. The university is very selective about who they let in, so you’re already way ahead of the game, I’m sure.”
Okay, so this guy was not only gorgeous but he seemed really nice!
I smiled at him. “Thanks, Mr. Hunter.”
Jonathan’s parents were awesome and I don’t know why but I felt really comfortable around them. I knew that they were super wealthy but they seemed so down to earth. I don’t know if I had ever gotten a better vibe from people I had just met before, but they seemed really cool.
“Oh, so Joshua you attended here as well? You must be so proud that your son is going here now, huh?” Jay jumped into the conversation with ease.
“Oh yes, we are extremely proud of Jonathan. He is number one in his class so we could not be happier.”
I glanced at Jonathan who was looking at me, and raised my eyebrow and gave him a half smile and mouthed, “Wow, number one?” I didn’t know he was a super brainiac. Looks, brains, and a sexy singer…he had everything but he didn’t have me, not yet. He seemed to want me but I had to know that he didn’t also want every other girl. I got lost in my thoughts and after a few seconds I realized that no one was saying anything. My mom was gently shaking my shoulder.
“Well, what do you think honey?” Wait, what did I miss?
“I’m sorry, what was the question?”
Jonathan’s dad chuckled. “You probably have your mind in your books, I remember what that was like. Sarah and I invited you and your parents to join us for dinner this evening, if you don’t already have plans.”
What?! I glanced at Jonathan who was standing there looking like a cute, hopeful little boy with his hands tucked into his pockets waiting for my answer. He could not have been more adorable. My heart was pounding against my chest at the thought of spending time with Jonathan and his parents and I had to dig deep to hold my excitement inside. A slow smile spread across my face and Jonathan let out a soft slow breath and smiled. I didn’t realize until that moment that he had been holding his breath.
I glanced at my mom with raised eyebrows and she smiled and nodded, so I agreed. “That would be really nice. Thank you so much for the invitation.”
“Of course dear, we like getting to know Jonathan’s friends, especially…” Jonathan quickly stepped in and looked really uncomfortable as he cut is mom off.
“Mom, dad, we should probably go pay for our stuff, I have a couple of things to do before dinner. I’m sorry to be so abrupt Mr. and Mrs. Marshall, it was really nice meeting you both and I look forward to getting to know you better at dinner.” He smiled at my parents and my mom was as much a sucker for a gorgeous face as I was.
“Oh no problem, we probably kept you too long!”
Jonathan’s mom quickly stepped in giving Jonathan a slightly scolding look. “Nonsense Nancy, you are all very lovely and we have enjoyed meeting you. Does 7:30 work for dinner?”
“That sounds fine. Where should we meet you?”
“Oh, we’ll have a car pick you up at your hotel. Where are you staying?”
“That’s not necessary, really, we don’t want to put you out.”
Gorgeous Mr. Hunter stepped in. “Nancy, I’m afraid you’ll hurt my wife’s feelings if you say no.” He leaned in just a little bit with a hint of a smile, raised his eyebrow and lowered his voice. “But she doesn’t take no for an answer.”
My mom was like a teenager in that moment, giggling and blushing at his words. I could see where Jonathan got his charm, he was the mirror image of his dad. It’s a good thing Jay was there to bring my mom back down to earth.
“Joshua, that is very kind of you and Sarah to offer, thank you. I will answer for my wife, which rarely happens, believe me, and say yes!” Jay and Mr. Hunter began chuckling together like two old friends.
Jonathan’s mom shook her head and smiled as she rolled her eyes at her husband. “Okay you two, that’s enough. Honey, we’ve taken enough of everyone’s time. I’m sure that Skylar and her parents have things to do before we pick them up, which will be where again?”
“Oh, yes, sorry! We are staying at the Fairview.”
It was the least expensive hotel without being a motel and I could tell that my mom was a little bit embarrassed that they weren’t staying at a fancier hotel. Jonathan’s mom didn’t even flinch and I could tell that put my mom at ease.
“Okay, then we will pick you up at around 7:00 and then swing by and get the kids at the dorm. That should be plenty of time since the restaurant is close by. I hope you don’t mind a steakhouse.”
My mom and Jay loved going to Outback on special occasions so they both instantly grinned at each other. “Sounds perfect. Thank you again.”
“Not at all, well we will see you in a few hours. Enjoy your afternoon.”
Jonathan gave me a little wave as he walked off with his parents. I couldn’t believe what had just happened, it was like I watched it happen to someone else. I just met Jonathan’s parents and we were going to dinner with them! I turned to my mom and I guess I didn’t realize I had such a big smile on my face because she just stood there smiling at me.
“What?” I looked from her to Jay and then back to her. “Why do you have that big smile on your face, mom?”
“I could ask you the same thing, honey. Jonathan seems like a nice boy and his parents are so nice.” She was still grinning ear to ear.
“What, mom?” I was starting to feel embarrassed because I knew that my mom knew.
“Well, honey you could do a lot worse than Jonathan Hunter. He’s smart, polite and very, very handsome. He takes after his father.” She got a dreamy look in her eye as she talked about Jonathan’s dad and Jay caught on.
“What am I, chopped liver?”
My mom quickly hugged Jay’s arm and kissed his cheek. “Of course not, love of my life. I just can appreciate a good-looking man, that’s all. But no one compares to you honey.”
“Okay, you’re getting too mushy! For the record, Jonathan and I are barely friends, I don’t even know him very well.” I tried to sound nonchalant but it didn’t work, and besides, my mom knew me way too well.
“Honey, from the way he looked at you, I can tell that he wants to know everything about you.” She gave me a small smile and mindlessly rubbed my arm before turning her attention to what was in our cart.
“You let me know if he gets fresh with you Sky, and I’ll nip that in the bud real quick!” Jay had a serious look on his face and I was totally embarrassed that we were even talking about this. I appreciated that he wanted to protect me but, if Jonathan did get “fresh” with me, as my old-fashioned step-dad said, um, stopping him would be the last thing that I wanted!
“You guys, can we drop this please!” I really wanted to change the subject because I didn’t even know what was going on with me and Jonathan, and I was still trying to process the fact that we were going to be having dinner with him and his parents. My life felt like a dream and a mini panic set in when I realized I had no idea what I was going to wear. It must have been written all over my face because mom and Jay looked at me with worry in their eyes.
“What’s wrong honey? Are you feeling okay?”
I furrowed my brows and threw my hands up in the air in frustration. “I don’t know what to wear!”
They both chuckled at me. “Oh! You had us worried there for a second!”
“Mom! This is serious!” I let all efforts of trying to keep my cool fly out the window because I didn’t have to pretend with them.
“Honey, Skylar, you have plenty of nice clothes and I am positive that you have something in your closet that you can wear. Why don’t we go back to your room with you and we’ll help you find something, okay?”
Her voice always soothed me and I smiled at both of them. “Okay.”
We paid for our stuff and headed back to the dorms. When we got back to my room, Katie wasn’t there and Jay sat in the chair and read the paper while my mom and I devoured my closet. We were digging for several minutes without finding anything that I liked and I was starting to panic again when my mom pulled out a dress that had fallen to the floor. She vigorously shook it off and held it up.
“What about this one?”
I had forgotten about that dress. It was so pretty. It was the dress I was going to wear to my graduation, the one I wanted to show Bethany, and the one I thought Seth would love. I didn’t end up wearing it because I thought it was tainted and I couldn’t return it because it was a final sale. When I bought that dress I had Seth in mind because I knew he would love it on me, but after he cheated on me I felt that he didn’t deserve to ever see me in the dress I had bought for him. So I decided to put it away and save it for a special occasion that had nothing to do with high school. I wanted to create new memories for that dress so that it didn’t always remind me of what had happened the day I bought it. It would be perfect for dinner with Jonathan’s family.
A huge smile spread across my face. “It’s perfect mom!” I flung my arms around her and gave her a quick hug. Just then Katie walked in.
“Hi everyone! You must be Sky’s parents!”
Katie’s smile was infectious and my mom returned her smile.
“Oh, right! You guys were already gone when Katie got here so you haven’t met her yet. Mom, Jay, this is my awesome roommate Katie. Katie, these are my parents.”
“We have heard so much about you Katie, it’s nice to finally put a face to the name.” My mom gave her a big hug.
Jay leaned in and pretended to whisper a secret. “Just between us Katie, we’re really happy that Skylar didn’t get stuck with some airhead.”
“Jay!” He meant well but he could be so embarrassing sometimes.
He shrugged his shoulders as he chuckled. “It’s the truth!”
“Katie please forgive my step-dad, he seems to have lost his mind.”
“Oh, it’s fine. I’m happy that I got a good roommate too because it would have been a nightmare if we didn’t like each other! So, what’s with the dress? Are you guys going out to dinner?”
My mom jumped in before I could stop her and I knew Katie’s reaction would be over-the-top.
“We are, we ran into your Resident Advisor Jonathan and his parents while we were at Target and they invited us to dinner.”
I thought Katie’s eyes were going to pop out of her head. “You did? Oh my gosh Sky, you and your parents are going out to dinner with Jonathan and his parents! You have to tell me everything when you get back, I want all of the details!”
“Well that sure is a reaction I didn’t expect!” My mother started giggling and Katie giggled right along with her.
“Well, Mrs. Marshall, Jonathan is super cute and he’s really nice, most guys aren’t like that. You usually find one or the other but not both!”
I was kind of surprised that she thought he was nice since she knew what was going on with us. I also didn’t expect her to be so open with my parents but I shouldn’t have been surprised I guess, because she was a chatterbox and loved to talk to anyone and everyone.
“Okay, that’s enough about Jonathan you guys, we have to get ready pretty soon.”
“Okay honey, we’re going to go back to the hotel to get ready and I guess we’ll see you when they come pick us up. Katie, are your parents coming this weekend?”
“Yeah, they’ll be here tomorrow.”
“Oh, that’s nice. Well, Katie, it was so nice to meet you and I hope you have a nice time with your parents this weekend. I’m sure we’ll see you again soon.”
My mom gave me a hug. “Bye honey, we’ll see you in a little bit.”
As soon as my parents left Katie pounced.
“Skylar Miller, I want to hear every detail of what happened at Target!”
I glanced at the clock and didn’t have a ton of time before I had to leave so I told her I’d have to fill her in later.
“Sky! Just tell me a little bit. Were his parents nice or were they stuck up?”
“Okay, but then I have to get ready. I promise I’ll fill you in on everything later.”
“Okay, now spill.” She was practically sitting on the edge of her bed waiting to hear what I had to say.
“Well, his parents were really nice and they were kind of funny, really down to earth. It was cool to see the way Jonathan was around his parents.”
“Down to earth? Wow, I wouldn’t expect that from people like them.”
“Yeah, really friendly, not stuck up at all. But don’t get me wrong, you can tell that they have a ton of money just by looking at them. They stuck out like sore thumbs in Target.”
“So where are you guys going to dinner?”
“Some steak house that’s nearby and their car is going to pick us up in less than an hour so I better go hop in the shower.”
“Okay, I’m going to meet Jenn and the girls for dinner so fill me in tomorrow if I’m sleeping by the time you get home tonight. I want to know everything.
“I will, I promise. And Katie, please don’t go telling everyone about this, I want this to stay private for now, okay?”
She winked at me and gave me a small smile. “Sure thing.”
One thing I had learned about Katie in the short time I had known her was that I could trust her. I trotted off to the shower, excitement and nervousness growing in my belly, as I thought about the night ahead.
Jonathan knocked on my door at 7:00 on the dot and my heart was pounding against my chest I was so nervous. I was having dinner with Jonathan and his parents with my parents! In what crazy world does this happen to someone like me? I had just finished dabbing on lip gloss when I flung the door open and he literally took my breath away. I had never seen him in anything but jeans, and standing in front of me was a gorgeous man in a well-tailored dark blue suit. My eyes roamed over his thick, dark hair, down to his eyes and I gave his suit a quick once over, a smile touching the corners of my mouth.
“Wow, you clean up really nicely Jonathan.”
He laughed at the look of wonder on my face. “Thanks, I think.” The smile started to fall from his lips as his eyes perused my body. My dress was a spaghetti strap, light pinkish purple fitted dress that skimmed by body but was not tight. It fit me perfectly and I knew that it flattered my figure.
“Skylar, you look stunning, absolutely beautiful.” There was lust in those eyes, I saw it plain as day, and it made me feel good to know that he wanted me.
I suddenly felt very shy because he would not take his eyes off of me. “Thank you.” I grabbed my sweater and closed the door behind me and turned to him. “Shall we go?”
“After you.” His mood had shifted slightly and he was a bit reserved as we walked to the car.
“Is something wrong Jonathan?” I was worried that somehow in the past two minutes I had screwed things up.
“Not at all.” He managed a small smile but it did not reach his eyes.
What did I do? I started to doubt myself and was grateful that I’d be seeing my parents in a few minutes when Jonathan turned to me before we got in the car, his eyes searching mine. He smoothed away the hair that the gentle breeze had blown into my eyes and smiled at me.
“You look so beautiful Skylar, I’m really happy that you and your parents decided to have dinner with us tonight, it’s going to be fun.”
“I think it will be fun too.”
The driver came around and opened the door to the sleek black mercedes and I felt like a princess as I slid into the car. Jonathan’s parents were inside and siting right next to his mom was Boobs McGee with a huge smirk on her face. You have got to be kidding me. What the hell is Barbi doing here? I quickly composed myself because the last thing I wanted to do was come off as snarky in front of Jonathan’s parents. I dug deep and pasted a saccharin sweet smile on my face and said hello to her.
“Barbi, what a nice surprise, I didn’t realize that you would be joining us.”
She returned an equally fake smile. “It’s nice to see you Skylar.”
Okay, what’s going on here? Jonathan could not possibly think that he could get away with taking two girls out at the same time, especially when one of them had their parents coming along! I shot Jonathan a look and he didn’t seem fazed by the situation at all.
Jonathan’s dad spoke up. “Skylar, I probably should have mentioned that our cousin was joining us, my apologies.” Wait, what? Cousin? And, was that annoyance I saw on his face? Was he not happy that she was there?
I was shocked into silence as I processed what he just said. Barbi is their cousin? If she was related to Jonathan then why was she hanging all over him like that all the time? Ewww gross! I was still trying to process and the conversation continued on without me. Barbi was saying something to Jonathan but everything was a garbled mess to me as the words swirled in the air making no sense at all.
“Skylar dear you look gorgeous, simple breathtaking.” His mom was very sweet and it snapped me out of my confusion.
“Thank you Mrs. Hunter.” I was really happy that she approved. The words were feeble as my brain continued to try to figure out what was going on.
“Beautiful dress Skylar, just stunning.” Mr. Hunter gave Jonathan a quick look a small smile. I was happy that they both approved and really happy that Barbi witnessed it first-hand. I glanced at her and she had a bit of a snarl curling her lip at the compliments aimed toward me.
“I have to apologize if I seem a bit dazed, I had no idea that Jonathan and Barbi were related.” My gaze slid to Jonathan and I had to control the annoyance I felt about him not telling me she was his cousin.
Barbi piped in with her obnoxious baby voice. “Well, technically we’re not related. My mom married Jonathan’s cousin.”
Oh, so that’s why she was always all over him, there was no blood relation. I doubted that any kind of relationship between those two would be allowed in Jonathan’s family.
“Yes, Barbara’s mother is his third wife to be exact, and they were married less than a year ago.” That was definitely an annoyed look on his face. Mr. Hunter was not being subtle at all about his feelings. So, Barbara, huh? I knew her real name couldn’t be ‘Barbi with an i’. She’s a moron.
Jonathan finally jumped into the conversation to try to smooth things over. “I was trying to tell you when I walked you home from the library a couple of weeks ago.”
I noticed his mom glance at me and I couldn’t tell what she was thinking. I didn’t want them to know that Jonathan and I had any friction so I was anxious for him to get on with what he was going to say.
“Barbi’s mom is married to my dad’s cousin Ethan, which makes him my cousin too. It was a surprise for the family because it happened so quickly but I think they’re settling in just fine, and so are we, right dad?” Jonathan shot his dad a look and his father was busy tapping away on his phone.
“Joshua, your son is speaking to you.” Her voice was stern and his dad quickly put down the phone and looked at Jonathan.
“Yes, we’ve welcomed our newest family member with open arms.” His smile was cold and I could tell that it wasn’t genuine. He doesn’t like her!
I decided to needle Barbi a bit. “Barbara,” I gave her a pointed stare, “are your parents coming this weekend?”
She did not look happy with me at all and I seem to have hit a sore spot. I don’t know if it was because I called her by her real name or because I asked about her parents. Whatever it was, it put a pretty big scowl on her face and I was loving it. Mr. Hunter jumped in before she could answer.
“No, unfortunately my flighty cousin and his wife decided to go to Paris at the last minute rather than visit her only child during her first semester away from home.” Mr. Hunter definitely did not hold back his real feelings. He really didn’t like his cousin!
I glanced over at Barbi who’s cheeks were bright red with embarrassment. It sucked that her parents didn’t seem to care about her. I almost felt sorry for her but then she gave me a sly smirk as Jonathan put his arm around her.
“We’re here for you Barbs.”
Where I normally would have felt pangs of jealousy that Jonathan had his arm around her, my feelings for him grew even more as I realized that he was a genuinely nice person. He didn’t want her to feel alone and I could tell that it was nothing more than that for him. Barbi was another story. I knew that she wanted him and she seemed like the kind of girl that would do anything to get what she wanted. Hopefully Jonathan was smart enough to know that.
I glanced at Jonathan’s parents and saw subtle disapproving looks on both of their faces. The car pulled up to my parents’ hotel and his parents looked incredibly relieved and I couldn’t tell why until my parents got in the car.
“Hello you two, why don’t you sit over there. Barbara come sit next to me.” Jonathan’s mother was not playing around, she did not want bimbo Barbi next to her son.
Barbi had a definite pout on her face as she left Jonathan’s side. My parents sat next to me and I moved closer to Jonathan to make more room for them. His arm felt so warm and comfortable against mine, I didn’t ever want to move. Our parents were chatting away and his hand was resting near my leg and he discreetly and gently rubbed the side of my thigh with his pinkie. I gave him a quick glance from the corner of my eye and he gave me a small smile and winked at me. Uh, the butterflies went crazy.
I glanced over at Barbi and she was watching us like a hawk and I didn’t care. I was happy that she saw us together because hopefully she would get the message that he liked me and not her.
My mom gave me a quick glance after she was introduced to Barbi and I could tell that she was not a fan. Barbi was sticky sweet to my parents and my mom and Jay could spot a fake person from a mile away.
My parents and Jonathan’s parents chatted like old friends in the car and Jonathan and I chimed in every now and then, but Barbi was silent and I could tell that she felt out of place. If it wasn’t for her, the scene would have been perfect. I discreetly pinched my arm in the car to make sure that all of this was real. It was so surreal yet seemed so natural that Jonathan and I were out to dinner with our parents and the night was almost perfect, except for Boobs McGee.
After we were seated, our parents started chatting away but the conversation never turned to what each one did for a living. I was kind of surprised by that because I thought that that was what adults talked about first. I’m sure my mom was relieved that she didn’t have to talk about it. She didn’t love that she worked in a grocery store, but it paid the bills and provided secondary insurance for us.
Dinner flew by quickly even though we were there for over two hours. I couldn’t believe how well my parents and Jonathan’s parents were getting along. Jonathan and I chatted about the weekend festivities for the fam and Barbi was literally pouting throughout the entire dinner because she was not really a part of either conversation. Ugh, She’s so annoying.
The night had been nearly perfect, minus Barbi’s presence, and we were getting ready to dive into dessert when the mood suddenly changed. Mr. Hunter directed the question to me.
“Skylar, have you seen Jonathan’s band play?” There was definite tension behind that question.
“I have, I saw them a few weeks ago, and they were awesome!” I was beaming because I was happy that I had the opportunity to let his parents know how talented I thought he was. Little did I know that was the wrong thing to do.
I glanced over at Jonathan and I could see the irritation on his face and then I glanced at his father and his jaw looked razor sharp as he clenched his teeth.
“We like to encourage all of our children’s little hobbies, but I hope that Jonathan hasn’t graced the stage with his presence too many times.”
I didn’t know what to say to that and thankfully Jonathan jumped in.
“Dad, I know what my priorities are, okay? There is nothing to worry about.”
He did not look happy at all as the words spilled out of his mouth and I could tell that his band was a sore spot for his dad. His mom didn’t say anything but, by the look on her face, it was obvious that she felt bad for Jonathan.
“I hope not.” Mr. Hunter’s words were firm.
Tension hung in the air as we finished dessert and then we all headed home. We dropped Barbi off first and she was not happy about that and tried to lure Jonathan back to her room.
“Jonny, I was hoping you could help me hang those pictures I told you about.”
Jonathan’s mom, jumped right in. “Barbara, Jonathan has a big day ahead of him tomorrow with the welcoming committee and all. Surely you can find one of your friends to help you hang a couple of pictures tomorrow at a more appropriate hour when you won’t be disturbing your dorm mates.”
Well I guess she doesn’t want anyone else to call her son Jonny!
Barbi’s cheeks were bright red as she mumbled a response. I couldn’t tell what she said but she quickly thanked the Hunters for dinner and told my parents how nice it had been to meet them. She plastered a fake smile on her face and she looked at me.
“I will see you tomorrow some time, I’m sure Skylar. It was so great to spend time with you tonight, we should definitely do this more often.”
I plastered an equally fake smile on my face and nodded at her. Um, yeah, that will happen when pigs not only fly, but sing and dance too!
She gave Jonathan a hug which lingered a little too long in my opinion, and then she was gone. Finally!
The energy really shifted after Barbi left and the car ride back to the dorm was a lot of fun. My parents and Jonathan’s parents were chatting like they were old friends and it was all pretty surreal to me. Everything felt like a dream as Jonathan casually draped his arm around the back of my seat. The car pulled up to our dorm a few minutes later and I thanked his parents for dinner and told my parents I would see them for breakfast. Jonathan said goodnight to his parents and mine, and the car waited until we were safely in the dorm.
Jonathan walked me to my room and was really quiet as we walked down the empty hall. When we got my door, he stood looking at me with a pensive look on his face for a minute and I started to feel a little bit uncomfortable and raw. His voice was gentle as he finally spoke.
“Did you have a nice time this evening, Sky?”
“I did, your parents are so nice Jonathan.”
“I could tell that they like you and they like your parents, who are equally as nice.” A small smile touched the corner of his mouth.
I was on cloud nine and then I remembered Barbi. “So, Barbi is your cousin by marriage. Why didn’t you just tell me that from the beginning Jonathan? That would have saved both of us a bit of heartache.”
He took a step closer to me and gently held my hand, his eyes searching mine. “Your heart was aching?”
Oh, I revealed too much. I decided to be honest as I held his gaze. “Yes, it was.”
He raised my hand to his lips, gave it a gentle kiss, and looked at me. “So was mine. I’m sorry I didn’t tell you sooner Sky, but I tried. You just wouldn’t listen to me.”
“Well, I’m happy that is all cleared up now.”
“Me too. I want you to know that I’m not the kind of guy to go after more than one girl at a time. And right now, you’re the only who has my attention. I don’t plan on looking anywhere else.”
I wanted to melt right there on the spot. What do you say to that? Luckily he kept talking and I didn’t have to say a thing.
He casually smoothed away my hair that had fallen over my eye and he smiled at me.
“Thanks for coming to dinner with us tonight. I probably won’t see you tomorrow since I am helping set up a bunch of stuff for the festivities, and my parents and I are going to dinner with the dean and a few other people tomorrow night. But I’ll see you Sunday night, right?”
Dinner with the dean, must be nice to be rich. Wait, what does he mean Sunday night?
“Sunday night? Did we have plans?”
“Yes, that’s when I was going to explain the whole Barbi situation. You’re supposed to meet me at 8:00.”
I was confused. “But, that’s all cleared up now.”
“Yes, but I still would like to spend time with you. So, if I don’t see you tomorrow, will I see you on Sunday?”
I could not have been happier as I smiled at him. “Yes.”
He eyes lingered on my lips and he leaned down and softly touched them with his own and smiled at me. “Goodnight, beautiful Sky.”
Butterflies for days. I gave him a small, sweet smile. “Goodnight Jonathan.”
The rest of parent’s weekend passed in a blur for me. I was still in a fog over what had happened Thursday night, and while I loved having my parents visiting me, all I could think about was my date with Jonathan Sunday night. We were scheduled all day Friday and Saturday with campus activities and I ended up crashing at my parents’ hotel Saturday night because they were leaving the next day. My cot was all set up in their room, Jay was brushing his teeth, and my mom and I were talking about the weekend. She said how nice it had been to meet Jonathan’s parents and how impressed they were with the campus and my professors, and then she wanted to talk about Jonathan.
“So, I think Jonathan is a really nice young man and I hope we’ll get to see him again soon. He seems to like you Sky, but don’t let that interfere with your studies.”
I rolled my eyes and smiled at her. “Mom, how well do you know your daughter?”
“Pretty well, I think.”
“Have you ever known me to let a boy get in the way of any of my goals?”
She smiled at me. “No, I suppose you have never allowed that to happen.”
“Exactly. Trust me, it’s not going to start happening now. Besides, Jonathan and I are just friends, nothing more.”
She gave me a knowing look but dropped it just as Jay came out of the bathroom.
“Okay ladies, lights out, we have an early day tomorrow.”
He was right, there was a farewell breakfast for the families the next day and my parents were flying home after that. As I lay there in the dark, my stomach did flips as I thought about seeing Jonathan the next night. I had only seen him briefly across campus once because he was busy helping out. I couldn’t wait to see him the next night.
The next morning we ran into Jonathan and his parents after breakfast and we chatted for a few minutes about the weekend. Jonathan’s mom really liked my mom and they were chatting like they were old friends. I guess what still surprised me about that was that they seemed to be so different, at least on the outside. My mom was very simple in her appearance, she was pretty but wasn’t really into fashion that much, and Jonathan’s mom was dressed in designer stuff from head to toe. She looked like the kind of woman who you would see in a high society magazine or something. But she was so cool and down to earth, not at all what I thought she would be.
Anyway, they were chatting away, Jay and Mr. Hunter were talking about golf and Jonathan couldn’t take his eyes off of me.
“I have to help clean up after all of the parents leave but we’re still on for tonight, right?”
“Definitely. I’ll meet you in the lobby?”
“Actually, change of plans. Come down to my room instead.”
His mom must have heard him because she glanced at him and gave him a disapproving look and Jonathan quickly explained.
“I’m having a quick floor meeting and sometimes the guys like to linger and hang out, but when they see you they’ll know to leave. We can go to the student union to grab a quick snack.”
His father must also have been listening because he chimed in.
“Jonathan, if you have plans with Skylar it is much more appropriate for you to go to her door to pick her up rather than have her come downstairs to your room, we’ve raised you better than that. I’m sure her parents would appreciate you behaving like a gentleman.”
The words were firm as he gave Jonathan a knowing look, and Jonathan looked sheepish as he looked from his dad to his mom to me. I could see that he really respected his parents.
“My dad’s right, I’m sorry about that. I will come upstairs to your door at 8:00 and then we can go to the student union .”
My mom smiled and I knew that she liked that he was going to do what she considered “the proper thing.” My parents were very old-fashioned like that and apparently so were Jonathan’s parents. Adults could be so stuffy sometimes.
“Okay, great. I’ll be ready at 8:00. Mom, Jay, we better get back to the hotel to check out and get your bags. You don’t want to miss your flight.”
“Oh, she’s right Sarah, we better get going. It has been so nice getting to know you, and thank again for the wonderful dinner Thursday night. And Joshua, so nice to meet you as well. We hope you have a safe flight back home.”
My mom and Jonathan’s mom hugged each other goodbye and said that they hoped to see each other again very soon. Joshua gave my mom a side hug and I thought she was going to faint right there. She was swooning over him like a teenager, it was so cute, and thankfully Mrs. Hunter was not fazed at all. I think Jay was a bit jealous but he played it off. I had to agree with my mom about Mr. Hunter, though. He was drop dead gorgeous.
“Skylar it was lovely to meet you and hopefully we will see you again soon.” His mom gave me a quick hug which was very sweet.
Mr. Hunter leaned down to whisper to me loud enough for everyone to hear. “Keep an eye on him for me. Clearly, between the two of you, you have more common sense.” He winked at me and smiled and I could feel my cheeks burning. Oh yeah, Jonathan definitely gets his charm from you.
“Dad, you’re embarrassing her. Don’t listen to him Sky.” Jonathan was the one who seemed embarrassed and it was cute.
“Okay, Joshua, now that you have thoroughly embarrassed our son, that is our cue to leave.” Mrs. Hunter playfully tugged on his arm.
We all said our goodbyes and I went with my parents back to their hotel.
“You know, honey, there is something very special about that family. I really like Sarah, she’s so nice and so easy to talk with. I do hope I see her again. It’s not as easy to make new friends at my age.”
“I’m happy that you guys got along so well, it made the weekend even more fun.”
Jay chimed in. “I liked Joshua a lot too. He wasn’t at all what I expected from someone with so much money and power. Good people, those Hunters.”
We got their luggage and I said goodbye to them as the airport shuttle pulled up. Sadness fell over me as I realized that they were leaving and I choked back tears as I hugged my mom goodbye.
“Thank you so much for coming, it meant so much to me.”
“Of course honey. Good luck with the rest of your classes and have fun with Jonathan tonight.”
Jay gave me a hug goodbye. “But not too much fun. I don’t want to have to come back here!”
He was joking but there was an element of seriousness behind his words.
“Don’t worry, I’ll be fine!”
“We love you honey, we’ll call you when we land.”
I waved goodbye as the shuttle took off and wiped away the tear that was falling down my cheek. I missed my parents already but I would be seeing them in a few weeks for Thanksgiving so I thought about how quickly the time would fly and that made me feel better.
I went back to my room and Katie was still out, so I took advantage of the quiet and studied at my desk for a couple of hours. My stomach started to growl halfway through reading about Pavlov’s dog and I couldn’t focus anymore. I walked down the hall to see who was around to go eat dinner and found Jenn who was just getting ready to find someone to go eat with. We chatted about the weekend as we ate dinner and she told me she didn’t realize that she missed her parents as much as she did until she saw them.
“I know, it was the same for me. Weird, right?”
“Yeah, totally. So, did I see you and your parents talking to Jonathan and his parents?”
Jenn was a no nonsense kind of girl, and normally I liked that, but not when the conversation was about me. I didn’t want her to blab all around so I downplayed the whole Jonathan thing.
“Oh, I guess so. My parents chatted with a bunch of different people this weekend, so I guess you could have seen them talking to the Hunters.” Please don’t ask me anything else.
Thankfully my answer seemed to satisfy her so she changed the subject to Jonathan’s band.
“They’re playing this Friday in town and a bunch of us are going, do you want to come with?”
I tried to hide my excitement of seeing him on stage again, of course I wanted to go!
“Yeah, they were so awesome! I’ll let Katie, Brenda and Amanda know so that they can join us.”
“Um, I don’t think Brenda and Amanda will want to be in the same room together let alone go to a concert together.” She raised her eyebrows as she looked down at her nails.
“You didn’t hear about this?”
“No! I’ve been buried in books at the library every day, what have I missed?”
She leaned in to whisper and I knew some juicy gossip was coming my way. “Well, you know how Brenda and Jake coupled up, like the first week of school?”
“Well, I guess Jake and Amanda were leaving the library at the same time one night and one thing led to another.”
“What?! He cheated on Brenda?”
“That’s what the rumor is, and Amanda is not hiding the fact that she is into Jake but Jake is totally blowing her off.”
“Does Brenda know?”
“Yeah, and Jake supposedly was on his knees crying and begging her to forgive him, and she did.”
“Yep, I agree. Once a guy cheats on you, you can never trust him again. So, like I said, I don’t think those two will be going anywhere together.”
“Yeah, you’re right. Wow, I really have been living under a rock. I need to get out more so I’ll definitely go to the concert this Friday.”
“Awesome, it’ll be so much fun!”
We went back to the dorm and I grabbed my books and headed off to the library for the afternoon. I was able to get in a good, solid four hours of studying and then I went to grab a quick dinner. At about 7:00 I went back to my room to get ready for my date with Jonathan.
Katie still wasn’t back in our room so I was able to get ready without being interrogated. I was all ready at 7:58 and I checked my lipstick in the mirror, expecting to hear his knock at any minute. I had known him to be nothing but punctual. At 8:10 I started to wonder if I had somehow confused the night we were supposed to get together. At 8:25 I started to get annoyed, and at 8:40 I was downright pissed.
Is he blowing me off?
I could feel myself getting more pissed and I decided to go downstairs and confront him because I was not going to let him get away with treating me like this.
His door was open and there were about six or seven guys in his room and I instantly felt shy because I had only expected to see him. I didn’t want all of those guys to see me all pissed off at him so I had to keep my emotions in check.
I stood in the doorway and lightly tapped on the doorframe. Jonathan looked my way and I could see a small grin begin to spread across his face.
“Guys, we can talk about this more tomorrow, okay?” He had a serious look on his face and that’s all it took for everyone to leave the room and close the door. Jonathan had a sexiness and masculine authority that was way beyond his young years and I liked it.
“Did I get the day and the time wrong Jonathan?” There was an obvious edge of irritation on my voice.
“No, I’m really sorry Sky, one of the guys is dealing with some really heavy stuff at home so we were all trying to help him.”
I instantly felt bad for being so upset. If someone was dealing with heavy stuff at home, that was more important than our silly little date.
“Oh, I feel bad now that everyone left. We can hang out another time, you really should go talk to this guy.”
“No, no, he’s alright now. We gave him some great advice and he called home tonight and things are on the mend. The guys that were here when you came in were just making sure there wasn’t more we could do for him, and there really isn’t except be an ear for him to listen when he needs someone to talk to. Most of the guys are good guys so he has a solid bunch to choose from, including me, of course.”
“Oh, okay, well I’m glad things are better for him. You said most of the guys are good guys…who’s the bad apple?”
“Ryan is a kiss as**s and is really annoying. He’s probably a nice kid but he thinks he’s cooler than he actually is. He went on and on about how many girls on campus want him and he just comes off as a douche bag.” He waved his hand in the air to dismiss the subject. “Anyway, back to you. I’m glad you came down.”
I felt totally shy when he said that, his eyes holding a hint of a smile. After all that we had been through so far, I still felt shy around him. Maybe if he wasn’t so gorgeous and so nice I would feel less shy, but the shyness was there and so were the butterflies. So what do I do when I’m shy like that? I try to change the subject. As I looked around his room I noticed there was only one bed. Perfect, I’ll ask about that.
“Jonathan, you were able to get a single? How in the world were you able to pull that off?” Oh wait, he’s the R.A., of course he has his own room, he already told me that. Dumb question Skylar.
He had a tiny smirk playing at the corner of his mouth as his gaze held mine. “Really Skylar? Is that what you want to talk about?”
He crossed his arms, waiting for my response. No, it’s not really what I wanted to talk about, I wanted to talk about how perfect he was and how perfect I thought we would be together. I could have stood there all night just looking at him but I did kind of want to head over to the student union for a snack.
I glanced at him. “No, that’s not what I want to talk about.”
He took a step toward me and I could barely breathe. He studied me and stood there, silent, and I began to shift back and forth, becoming extremely uncomfortable under his gaze. Then after what felt like an eternity, he finally said something. He narrowed his eyes a bit as he looked me, seemingly trying to figure me out.
“Let’s go grab a bite, what do you say?”
He was so damned sexy and I didn’t realize I had been holding my breath until a loud hiss of air escaped my lungs and Jonathan turned up an eyebrow at me.
“Are you okay?”
Totally embarrassed I sheepishly nodded my head.
He leaned in and gave me a soft, lingering kiss and I wanted so much more.
“Good. Ready to go?” He took a couple of steps toward the door.
My head was saying yes and my mouth had a mind of it’s own, and I was completely mortified when the next words came tumbling out of my mouth.
“That was a really delicious kiss.” As soon as the words came out, I could feel my cheeks burning with fire. Did I really just say that out loud?
I could see the look in his eyes shift and what I saw was pure desire.
“Delicious kiss, huh?” He was leaning against his desk now and his gaze was pure seduction as his eyes searched mine.
I felt butterflies flitting around in my belly as I returned his seductive gaze. It was as if all of my morals had flown out the window the moment I met Jonathan Hunter. I had only had one real boyfriend so I didn’t sleep around like so many girls in my high school did. Never in my life had I ever wanted a guy so badly, so soon. I thought I was really into Seth, but what I felt for him was nothing compared to what I was feeling for Jonathan. I was so physically drawn to him that I would probably do whatever he asked me to do in the bedroom. That’s how into him I was. My body wanted him and my head was not trying to fight it.
“Earth to Sky.”
I snapped back to reality and I realized that I had been standing there with what must have been a really silly look on my face, and I could feel the warmth of my cheeks as they most likely burned crimson red.
“Oh, sorry. What was I saying?”
Jonathan slowly walked over to me and stood less than a foot away and tipped my chin up with his finger so that our eyes locked. You are so beautiful. I felt like that teenager you see in the movies who is obsessed with a celebrity, except Jonathan wasn’t a celebrity, at least not yet. My skin tingled under my chin where our flesh met and I wanted to feel his touch all over my body.
“You were saying that the kiss was delicious.” His eyes roamed over my hair and my face and settled on my lips. He leaned down and gently touched his lips to mine in a soft peck. He pulled back and I could see something in his eyes and it wasn’t lust, there was a look of caring behind his intense gaze.
“I just had to do that, you look so beautiful Sky.”
There were those pesky butterflies again, ravaging my belly. Feeling shy and not knowing what to say was a bad combination for me because anything was likely to come flying out of my mouth.
I touched my hands to my face and hair. “Beautiful? I barely have on any makeup and I’m sure my hair looks a mess because I forgot to run a brush through it while I was waiting for you upstairs and then it was getting late and you didn’t show up so I was kind of annoyed and I just came down here without checking myself in the mirror. I’m sure I look a mess. Beautiful? I don’t think so.”
He looked at me with amusement as I rambled on which was something I tended to do whenever I was uncomfortable or embarrassed.
“Yes, beautiful. You look perfect.” I saw a sparkle in his eye and it made my belly flip again. His eyes perused my body and slowly made their way back up to mine and I could see that the sparkle in his eye had turned to pure lust. I knew that look and I was sure that same look was reflected in my eyes.
I instinctively took a step back from him as he moved toward me.
“Trying to get away from me Sky?” Seduction was written all over his face.
I gave him a small, cautious smile. “No, of course not, but I think we should probably get going before it gets too late. I have an 8:00 class tomorrow morning.”
He reached out and pulled me close to him, his arms wrapping tightly around my waist. “I think we’ve had a change of plans, I don’t want to share you with anyone else tonight. I just want it to be you and me. I don’t know what it is about you Sky, but you draw me in and I don’t want to be let out.”
Well, how could I resist that? He was saying exactly what I wanted to hear and I wanted to be with just him too, no interruptions and no other noise, just us two. I didn’t back away when he leaned in to kiss me and this kiss was different. Something had shifted between us when I finally found out that nothing was going on with him and Barbi. I had let my guard down and I allowed myself to feel for him and I allowed myself to stop running from what I was feeling.
His lips were soft and searching at first and then they were hungry, greedy for me, as his grip tightened and he pulled me even closer. His hands roamed down over the round curves of my as**s as he pressed his pelvis into mine. I could feel his erection pressed against me and I wanted to wrap my legs around him to feel his throbbing against my warm core.
He walked me over to the bed as he buried his hands in my long brown waves, his tongue sliding up my neck, and he slowly fell back onto his bed with me on top of him. He quickly turned us over, him now on top, and I felt the amazing weight of him on me. I loved the feeling of having him on top of me, I felt so safe and protected. His hands explored my body everywhere, sliding under my shirt and reaching beneath me to quickly unhook my bra, and then sliding back around to gently rub and flick my nipples. I started to move and moan softly as waves of pleasure began to engulf me.
“You drive me crazy, you know that?” His rich, deep voice purred in my ear.
I held his face in my hands and looked in his eyes. “The feeling is mutual.”
His mouth came crushing down on mine and I arched my body toward him as he cupped my brea**sts in each hand, running his tongue over my lips. I let out a soft sigh as his hands found the bottom of my shirt and lifted it off over my head. I slid my arms out of my bra and gently raked my fingers through his thick hair. The cool air clashed against my hot skin as Jonathan ran his tongue around my belly button and then up my stomach to capture my nipple with his mouth. One hand slid down between my legs and I opened them for him, his fingers finding my warm core. I began to slowly writhe around on the bed and I felt my body tense up as a choked cry escaped my lips.
Being with him in that moment just felt right, the way things were supposed to be. I didn’t feel shy with him because he seemed to love every inch of my body as his hands and tongue explored me.
“Let me take these off.” His voice was pure sex.
He slowly slid my panties off of me, his fingers gently trailing along my skin as he did so. As he slid his hands back up my legs, his tongue followed along the trail up to my inner thigh, stopping to kiss the sensitive skin there. My breathing was heavy as my body was engulfed in pure ecstasy. Fooling around had never felt so good and I didn’t want him to stop. I unabashedly spread my legs wide giving him permission to devour me with his tongue. I nearly came right then with the first stroke of his tongue, I thought it was going to send me over the edge. My body was tingling with pleasure as Jonathan’s skilled tongue delved into my most sensitive spots. My hands were buried deep in his hair as I was entangled in the throws of pleasure and as the soft moans escaped my lips I knew that no one else would ever be able to make feel that way again. As Jonathan’s tongue stroked my most intimate place, waves of pleasure began to build and then he repeatedly flicked my bud with his tongue and I couldn’t hold back any longer. My body erupted in an orgasm so strong I nearly fell off of his small bed.
I lay there panting, trying to catch my breath and I looked over at him and had a devilish grin on his face.
“You look so sexy like that, Sky. I can’t wait to see the look on your face when I make love to you.”
I gave him a seductive smile and reached out to pull him to me for a sensual kiss, our tongues sliding over each other.
“You can see that look right now Jonathan.”
He shocked me by pulling away and had a serious look on his face.
“I want our first time together to be special Sky, you deserve that.”
I was disappointed but also kind of happy because it showed me that Jonathan really cared about me. He could have had sex with me right then because, believe me, I was ready. I mean, this guy was so freakin’ hot I was ready to do whatever he wanted. I had never been with such a gorgeous, sexy guy ever and I couldn’t wait to have all of him.
I couldn’t hide my disappointment and he must have seen it because he gently placed a finger under my chin and I raised my eyes to his.
“It will be worth the wait, I promise.” He leaned down and gave me a soft peck on the tip of my nose.
That kind of talk sent the butterflies fluttering like crazy in my belly and I was left tongue-tied once again. I was beginning to think that I would feel like this around him all the time. The chemistry between us was so strong that it freaked me out a little bit because I didn’t know that I could feel so strongly for another person.
He had taken care of me but I could see through his jeans that he was fully erect so I wanted to take care of that for him.
“Okay, we’ll wait, but we can still do other stuff, can’t we?” I looked at the obvious bulge in his jeans, and looked at him and raised my eyebrows.
A slow grin spread across his face. “Yes, we can do other stuff, but today is just about you.”
“But I want to make you feel good too, Jonathan.”
He held my face in his hands as his eyes searched mine. “Just being around you makes me feel good Sky. I want to be inside of you the first time I experience that kind of pleasure with you.”
I glanced down at his still firm bulge. “Isn’t that painful?”
He gave me an amused smile. “I’ll be fine. I’m going to go to the bathroom and I’ll be right back.”
I put my clothes back on and sat on his bed waiting for him to come back. It was getting late and I had an early class so when he came back to the room I would say goodnight and then go up to bed. He was taking kind of a long time so I walked around his room and looked at the picture he had on his desk. He had one picture of him, his parents, two women who had to be his sisters, an older woman and another couple and their children and they were all on a yacht. It was a stunning group of people and they all looked really happy and really rich. Must be nice.
“That’s my family.” His deep voice caught me off guard and I spun around to face him.
“I wasn’t snooping, I just wanted to take a quick look at the picture since it was on your desk and you were taking a while.”
“Sorry about that, I had to take care of business.”
I glanced down at his pants and could see that the bulge was gone. Oh! He took care of that in the bathroom, got it! Jonathan walked over to me and slipped his arm around my waist and picked up the picture.
“These are my parents, which I’m sure you already knew, these are my beautiful sisters Claire and Abby, this is my Nana Bunny, this is my uncle Jake and Aunt Lauren and my cousins Emily and Jeremy. We took this picture on a trip to Croatia for my parents 20th wedding anniversary.”
“Your family is so beautiful and they look so happy.”
“Thanks, yeah, they’re a pretty happy bunch and really fun to be around.” He put the picture back down on his desk.
“Jonathan, it’s getting late and I have an early class tomorrow so I better get up to bed. Thanks for an amazing night.”
“You don’t have to leave Sky, I don’t have a roommate so you can stay with me. I’ll give you a t-shirt to sleep in. Will you please stay?”
It was so hard to resist those gorgeous dark eyes that were begging me to stay.
“I better go back to my room Jonathan, I won’t be able to control myself if I stay.”
I couldn’t believe that I had let that slip out and I wanted to just die of embarrassment.
“Being in control when you want to lose control makes things so much more interesting. I promise I won’t let anything happen. I just want to hold you in my arms all night and feel your body next to mine.”
My belly flipped when he said that to me and that was what I wanted too. I didn’t want to leave him so I quickly changed into his shirt and crawled under his covers, full makeup and all. I was sitting up, waiting for him to join me. His eyes glazed over with lust, I saw it, and he quickly caught himself.
“You look amazing in my t-shirt. Are you comfortable, can I get you anything?”
“Can you set your alarm for 6:30? I can’t be late for class.”
“Sure thing.” He walked over to the table next to the bed and set his alarm. He stood there for a minute and I really wanted to feel him next to me.
“Thanks. Are you going to join me?”
He turned off his light and slipped into bed behind me. My heart was thumping against my chest as I felt his warm hands slide down to my hips pulling me close to him. I wanted so badly to turn around and kiss him but I knew it would lead to more. His arm wrapped around my stomach, holding me close to him and I snuggled against him feeling his warm breath in my ear.
“Are you comfortable, Sky?”
“I’m perfect. I’m glad we stayed in tonight, Jonathan, I had a really good time with you.” My words were a whisper as my eyelids became heavy.
He squeezed me tight. “Ditto.”
I drifted off to sleep happier than I had been in a very long time.
The next morning Jonathan’s alarm startled me awake and at first I didn’t know where I was, but then I looked over at him and happiness swept over me.
“Good morning, beautiful.” I don’t know how it was possible, but he was even more yummy in the morning with his hair tousled and his chiseled chest begging for me to touch it. I literally had to suck in air when my eyes fell on his gorgeous chest.
I smiled at him. “Good morning.”
He had a t-shirt on when he climbed into bed and he must have taken it off during the night. Let me just say that it’s a good thing I didn’t see that last night because there was no way I would have been able to control myself. His chest looked like it had been carved from stone and his muscles were so defined and perfect. Each muscle was more perfect than the next; he was an absolute specimen. I wanted to jump his bones right there but I didn’t have time so I climbed out of bed and quickly put on my clothes. I glanced at myself in the mirror and I was instantly horrifed. Could my mascara be any more smeared all over my face?
I wiped away what I could and stood away from the bed so that Jonathan couldn’t see the mess so up close and personal.
“I’ll see you later?” I was almost afraid to ask him but I wanted him to know that I expected that last night was the beginning of something between us.
“Yes, of course. My last class is at 2:00 and then I have band practice at 4:30. Do you want to meet in the library at 8:15 and study together?”
Of course I did! “Sure, sounds good. I’ll meet you by the circulation desk.”
“Okay. Hey, come here.”
I hesitated. “My face is a mess and my makeup is everywhere, trust me it’s best if you don’t get a close-up.”
“You’re being silly. Please come here.”
I reluctantly walked over to him, quickly wiping under my eyes, hoping I got the worst of it.
He pulled me down to him for a quick peck on the lips.
“Have a good day.”
I couldn’t help but smile at him. “You too.”
I literally felt like I floated up the stairs to my room. Katie was fast asleep and I quietly grabbed my things and went down the hall to shower. I was in heaven as I replayed the previous night over and over. His kisses everywhere, his touch, his voice, how sweet he was to me, all of it I replayed. There was no question in my mind that Jonathan and I were an official couple, and I was going to have to force myself to focus in class that entire day. It wasn’t even 7:00 a.m. and I already couldn’t wait until 8:15 p.m. came.
I was in my own world as I showered and as I wandered back to our room, Katie was just waking up.
“Where have you been all night missy?” Her voice was groggy but her curiosity was sharp and clear.
I decided that I was just going to tell her, no need to be coy about Jonathan anymore.
“I was with Jonathan.” I gave her a knowing look and then went to our closet to find clothes for the day.
She shot up in bed and I burst out laughing. “You what?!”
“You heard me.” I didn’t even try to stop the huge smile that spread across my face.
“Skylar Miller, I want every single juicy detail! You still owe me the story of what happened at dinner with his parents!”
“I cant right now Katie, I have class at 8:00 and I have to grab breakfast first. Can you do lunch around 12:30?”
“Um, yeah, I have a break from 11:50 to 2:00.”
“Okay, I’ll meet you at the cafeteria and I promise I will tell you all about it.”
That seemed to satisfy her, so I finished getting ready and she slumped back down under her covers. I grabbed my backpack and headed off to breakfast.
I don’t know how I was able to focus in class, but somehow I absorbed everything the professor was saying. I think the fact that I didn’t have to worry about what was going on with Jonathan and I really helped me be able to concentrate in class. That probably sounds pretty pathetic, but you know what it’s like when you have a huge crush on someone and those feelings just overwhelm you? That’s what I was dealing with but I had to get my feelings about him under control or my schoolwork would suffer, and for me that was not an option. So I was really happy that things seemed to be on track with us.
I had three classes that morning and then it was time to meet Katie for lunch. She was already waiting for me by the time I got there and she barely waited for me to say hi before she started in on me.
“I have been dying to hear what happened last night. Tell me everything and don’t rush through any of the details!”
I didn’t mind telling her because I knew that she would be happy for me. I didn’t have to worry about any sort of jealousy with Katie.
Her wide eyes and excited expression made me giggle. “Okay, I won’t leave out the good stuff, I promise!”
We got our food and sat at a table by ourselves so that we would have privacy, I didn’t want everyone to know about Jonathan and me, at least not yet.
“Remember I told you we were going to dinner with Jonathan’s parents?”
“Yeah, how was it?”
“They are super nice and my parents and his parents really hit it off, it was kinda weird. But that wasn’t the weirdest thing. Guess who else was there?”
“Oh my gosh, who?”
The look on Katie’s face was priceless. “You are kidding! What was she doing there? Wait, was he trying to go out with both of you at the same time?”
“Well, that’s what I thought when I first saw her, but you’ll never guess the reason she was there.”
“Tell me, tell me!”
“Wait for it…she is his cousin!”
“No way! But she always looks like she wants to jump his bones, how gross!”
“Well, I should be more clear, she is his cousin by marriage.”
“Huh? I’m confused.”
“His dad’s cousin married her mom so, technically, they’re not related. You should have seen the way his mom looked at her, she is definitely not a fan. Oh, oh! And Barbi is not her full name, it’s really Barbara, so all of that Barbi with an “i” crap was just that, crap!”
“Wow, I can’t believe it!”
“Yeah, and she even tried to get Jonathan to go to her room that night, can you believe that? In front of his parents she was full on flirting with him and mama did not likey at all!”
“Ugh, she’s so disgusting, such trash. How did Jonathan handle it?”
“Well that’s the frustrating thing, he feels sorry for her because her mom has basically abandoned her for her new husband. Oh, did I mention that she is his third wife and they have been married for less than a year? I think Jonathan doesn’t want her to feel alone and that is why he is nice to her. I really should be happy about that because it shows what a good guy he is, but I just wish she wasn’t around.”
“Don’t worry about her, she’s not worth it. Besides, it seems to me like Jonathan has now made it pretty clear that he wants to be with you. So tell me the good stuff, why didn’t you sleep in our room last night, missy?”
Katie slid me a prodding but teasing look and I couldn’t hold back my smile as I thought about Jonathan.
“He wanted to talk to me after parent’s weekend was over and we were going to go the student union for a snack around 8:00 but plans kinda changed.” I could feel myself blushing.
“Really? Spill the beans please.” Her grin was infectious.
“Katie, I can’t spill all the beans, but I will say that Jonathan is the best kisser ever. I could barely control myself with him!”
“Did you control yourself?”
“Yes, but I don’t know for how long. I have never felt like this about anyone, it’s like we were made for each other, everything is so easy now that the whole Barbi thing is cleared up.”
“Wow, so you guys are an official couple. I knew he was into you that first night we saw him sing. I’m really happy for you Sky. I’m sure you’ll get a few nasty glares once the whole campus finds out he’s off the market.”
“Katie, just don’t let it be you that tells the whole campus. I just want it to kind of happen, no gossip. Promise me?”
“Oh fine, take all of my fun away. I really wanted to rub it in a few girls’ faces, but I won’t, I promise.” She pretended to pout for a second but then shot me a devilish grin. “Can’t I just rub it in Barbi’s face, just a little?”
“Katie, no! C’mon!” I had to hold back my giggle.
“Okay, fine. Party pooper.”
“You’re silly. Don’t you have a class to get to?”
She looked at her watch. “Oh man, I’m going to be late!” She grabbed her book bag and I told her I’d take her tray up for her.
“Thanks Sky, I’ll see you later!”
I took the last sip of my soda and grabbed our stuff to throw away. I had just placed our trays in their stack when I saw Barbi and her boobs walk into the cafeteria with the biggest man whore on campus. He was a senior and apparently had been with over 50 girls the year before. They deserved each other. She glanced at me and quickly dismissed me. So much for wanting to hang out with me, skanky tramp. We both knew she was lying when she said that, and we both knew that it would be a cold day in hell before it happened. I walked out of the building feeling good about Jonathan and me and I couldn’t wait to see him that night.
The afternoon passed quickly, thank goodness, and I showered and changed before meeting Jonathan at the library. I got there at a couple of minutes before 8:15 and he was sitting on a bench reading a book. I smiled when I saw him and walked over to him and lightly touched his shoulder. He looked up at me and smiled.
“Hey!” He stood up and gave me a quick peck on the lips. “You look pretty.”
I felt myself blush as he gave me a slow once over, and I smiled back at him.
“Thanks, you don’t look so bad yourself. Where do you want to go study?”
“Let’s go to the seventh floor, it’s pretty secluded up there.”
“Hey, that’s where I usually go when I don’t want anyone to find me.”
He pointed back and forth to our heads and grinned at me. “We must have that ‘great minds think alike’ thing going on.”
“I think so,” I said as I smiled coyly at him.
We found an empty table and Jonathan sat across from me and we laid out our books and notes and dug in. Every now and then we would glance up at each other at the same time and Jonathan would smile and wink at me, and I swear the butterflies danced like crazy in my belly. It was so nice to be there studying with him, not wondering how he felt about me. We were so easy with each other and everything between us just fell right into place. Here I was, studying with the hottest guy in school, when just a few short months ago I didn’t think I would ever let anyone in again.
We studied until almost 1:00 a.m. and then we gathered our stuff and went back to our dorm. He held my hand as we walked back together and we gently swung our linked hands as we strolled back to the dorm. After we were inside, Jonathan turned to me and put his arms around me, his eyes searching mine.
“Will you stay with me tonight?”
I wanted to, I really did, but it was so late and I was exhausted. I started to turn him down but he cut me off.
“Just to sleep Sky, I promise. I like having you in my bed next to me, and besides we can sleep in since we both don’t have class until 10:30.”
I was too weak to say no to his gorgeous, pleading eyes.
“Okay, just let me wash my face and stuff and grab my PJ’s, and I’ll be down in a few minutes.”
“You can sleep in one of my t-shirts, you don’t have to bring PJ’s, besides you look super sexy in my shirt and I like it.”
I could feel the color flooding my cheeks as I smiled at him. “Okay, I’ll be down in a few minutes.”
Katie was sleeping so I was careful to be quiet as I grabbed my shower caddy with my toothbrush and facial soap. I washed my face in record time and then I went down to Jonathan’s room and couldn’t wait to cuddle up with him.
I changed into his t-shirt which nearly swallowed me like the last one, and climbed into his bed next to him. He turned out the light and I could see his face faintly in the dark as we lay facing each other. He gently stroked my hair and then raised my chin and kissed me on the lips.
His voice was soft in the dark. “I’m so glad you’re here, Sky.”
We drifted off to sleep, wrapped in each other’s arms and there was no where in the world I would rather have been.
His performance was canceled that Friday so I didn’t get the chance to see him play again. Jenn was super bummed but I reminded her that they would be playing at Fall Festival in a few weeks.
The next two weeks passed pretty quickly and I slept in Jonathan’s room every night. We fell into a pattern of studying together almost every night and then I would sleep in his room. Physically, we fooled around a bit but we hadn’t had sex yet, but I knew it was coming soon and I couldn’t wait to be with him in that way. We were both swamped with homework so we didn’t actually have a lot of time to talk to each other in that time. We studied together almost every night until we could barely keep our eyes open, but we didn’t have a lot of down time with each other so I was really looking forward to that.
That following Friday was Fall Festival and Jonathan’s band, Sonic Blaze, was playing in the gym, which was huge, and I was really excited because a dance floor area was being set up. He told me that he would be singing every song to me and he wanted to meet up after so that we could hang out together. I was super psyched because we didn’t hang out at all the weekend before, Jonathan had to go home for the weekend for some business thing with his family’s company, so I couldn’t wait to spend some quality time with him.
I was dying for classes to be over that Friday, and the second I was done for the weekend I rushed back to my room to meet Katie. We went to an early dinner off campus at this greasy, but delicious burger place, and then we went back to our room to get ready. We were meeting a bunch of people over at the gym for the concert and Katie could not stop talking about it.
“This is so cool because the lead singer is your boyfriend! I feel so cool!”
“You are cool Katie.”
“So are you! We’re too cool for school!”
“Okay, I spoke to soon. Nerd alert!” I teased her and she playfully swatted my arm. We were giggling like kids when Jenn came to our room.
“Oh my gosh, you both look amazing! Tonight is going to be so much fun you guys, I can’t wait! Jake said the guys were taking bets on how slutty Barbi’s outfit is going to be.”
We all let out a devilish giggle.
Ugh, I had forgotten about her. She was one person I was really not looking forward to seeing. I hadn’t seen her for a while, which was nice, but I was sure she was going to be hanging all over Jonathan again and I knew that that night, I wouldn’t put up with it. He had made it pretty clear to me that his eyes were fixated only on me, and I didn’t want big boobs Barbi to try and overstep her boundaries. I would tell her off if I had to.
“Jenn you look gorgeous too! So, do you have your eye on anyone yet?” I gave her a teasing smile as I grabbed my ID.
“I do, but no one as gorgeous as your guy.”
I was a bit taken aback by that but then realized that I shouldn’t be. Well, I guess Jonathan was my guy and the whole campus probably knew by now since we were together so much.
“My guy?” I raised an eyebrow at her and feigned ignorance.
“Yes, your guy, the gorgeous Jonathan Hunter. He only has eyes for you and I know that at least a dozen girls are super bummed. We all see the way he looks at you Sky. I hope I meet a guy who looks at me that way one day, Jonathan is definitely smitten.”
I smiled to myself at that thought and I couldn’t wait to see him at the concert.
We got there around 8:00 and the gym was packed and the band was going on at 10:00. Music was blaring from the speakers in the wall, and it was decent, but everyone was waiting for the good stuff, the live stuff. Fall Festival was sponsored by the Inter Greek Coucil, and since the whole campus was invited, there was no booze, it was a totally dry party.
The dance floor was set up on the far side of the gym away from the door and the music was just loud enough, but not so loud that we couldn’t hear each other talk. Katie told me there was an after party at one of the frat houses and there were going to be plenty of kegs there. I didn’t really care about how many kegs would be there because I just wasn’t into the drinking thing.
“Jonathan and I have plans after but we’ll probably stop by the party.”
I didn’t see Jonathan anywhere and I tried to be super low key about looking around for him. I didn’t want anyone to think I was obsessed even though it was heading in that direction. After 30 minutes, still no Jonathan. I thought that I would at least get to see him before he went on stage. After another 30 minutes I tried to hide how bummed I was that he wasn’t there yet and I decided to lose myself in dancing with my friends.
I was still dancing 10 minutes later when I glanced toward the front of the gym and I saw Jonathan leaning down to listen to what Barbi was whispering in his ear. Her boobs were pressed against him as she cupped her hand over his ear and leaned in close. If it was physically possible for steam to come out of one’s ears, that is exactly what would have happened to me in that moment. Has he been here all of this time and not come over to say hi to me? Maybe I need to give him a taste of his own medicine.
I walked off the dance floor in a huff and turned on my heel to find Ryan, the guy Jonathan said he couldn’t stand, to ask him to dance and of course I wanted Jonathan to see us. He needed to know that other guys were into me and that he wasn’t the only fish in the sea. I know it was probably a little mean to use Ryan that way, but he was kinda sleazy so I didn’t feel too bad about it. I would be able to teach both guys a lesson: Jonathan would learn that he wasn’t the only guy looking my way, and Ryan would learn that he should treat girls with a little more respect. Ryan gave me his full attention when I walked up to him and he had a flirtatious grin plastered on his face.
“Hey Skylar, what’s going on?”
I tossed my long dark waves over my shoulder and smiled up at him. “Hey Ryan, I just thought I’d say hi. I haven’t really had a chance to talk to you and I wanted to know more about you. You’re from San Diego, right?”
His eyes brightened and it was clearly obvious that he was flattered that I was talking to him. His grin was nearly ear to ear as he answered me. “I am, you’ve done your homework on me.”
I had to stop myself from rolling my eyes at him because he looked pretty full of himself in that moment…if he only knew. I decided to play along because the ultimate goal was to get Jonathan’s attention.
“I guess I have. So, are you ready for this awesome band tonight?”
“Oh yeah, they totally rock! Hey, do you want something to drink or do you want to dance?” His green eyes sparkled as he waited for my answer.
I feigned interest and gave him my best flirtatious smile. "I would actually love a cup of that delicious punch if you don't mind, and then maybe we can go show them how it's done on the dance floor.”
“You got it, I’ll be right back.” He rushed off to go get my cup of punch and I could feel someone piercing a hole right through me, so I turned around and met Jonathan’s intense gaze from across the room. He does not look happy and it serves him right! He knows how I feel about that bimbo and he is still letting her hang all over him, well two can play that game buddy.
Barbi was still by his side, whispering something in his ear and, although he probably wasn't even listening to her, he wasn't stopping her. His focus was 100% on me, but to anyone else looking at him it seemed as though he was into her and liked having her so close to him since he clearly was not pushing her away.
Ryan came back over to me with my drink and I tore my eyes away from Jonathan and set them on Ryan. I decided to turn it up a bit since I knew that Jonathan was watching us so I grabbed my drink from him and I put one hand on his arm and lightly stroked it, thanking him for my drink. I was sure that gesture would really irritate Jonathan and as I took a couple of sips of my drink I glanced in Jonathan’s direction and to say that he looked pissed is an understatement. I smiled to myself as I turned to put my drink down on the ledge, and I grabbed Ryan’s hand and led him out onto the dance floor. We started moving to the music and at first we were not dancing vey close each other, but I eventually moved closer and closer to him occasionally touching his arm and smiling at him while tossing my hair.
He seemed to be enjoying himself and he also, surprisingly, was keeping his hands off of me. Maybe I had been wrong about him and maybe Jonathan had too, maybe he wasn’t a big sleazebag. I was starting to feel bad about using him to make Jonathan jealous, and then I felt his hand on my as**s and all feelings of remorse went out the window. I was going swat his hand away when suddenly an imposing figure was between us.
I looked up and saw Jonathan pushing Ryan away from me and Ryan starting to charge right back at Jonathan, until he realized who it was and he stopped himself. Ryan put both hands up in the air and said, “Sorry dude”, and walked away.
Jonathan turned his fiery gaze on me and grabbed my arm and pulled me close to him, his eyes frantically searching mine. “So, you’re letting guys rub all over your as**s now? I don’t want anyone touching you but me Skylar, do we understand each other?”
I snatched my arm away from him and returned his fiery gaze. “You cannot spend half the night letting that tramp rub her ti**ts all over you, and expect me to stand in a corner and wait for you! You are not the only guy out there Jonathan Hunter, plenty of guys want me!”
He grabbed my arm again and his eyes pinned me. “Listen, don’t play these games! I only want you and I know you want me!”
What could I say to that? There was nothing to say, he was right. I didn’t want to be with anyone else. He had just expressed his feelings for me so it did make me feel a little bit better about Barbi. I just wished she would go away. I instantly softened as I let his words sink in. I think he sensed the release of my tension and he placed a finger under my chin and raised my face so that my eyes met his.
“These feelings I have for you are new for me Sky, I don’t play games and I don’t want to be with anyone else but you. If you see Barbi hanging around, just know that I am not interested in her. I feel sorry for her and I’m just trying to be nice, for my family’s sake. I only have eyes for you.”
“I feel the same way Jonathan, this is new for me too, you know?”
“Okay, so we’re good?”
I smiled at him. “Yeah, we’re good.”
“Do you still want to get out of here and go somewhere to hang out away from all of these people when I’m done on stage?”
He smiled at me and kissed me softly on the lips. “I better go, it’s almost time for us to go on. I’ll find you after.” With that he rushed off.
I went back to my friends, happy as a lark, who were dancing to the music and then the lights dimmed, the music stopped, and strobes swirled around the room as a voice boomed through the speakers.
“Alright, alright! Fall Festival! Give it up for Sonic Blaze!”
Screams filled the air as the huge crowd clapped and screamed and the lights rose on the figures standing on stage. It looked like nearly the entire campus was there. Jonathan still took my breath away and looked hella sexy as his hands covered the mic and he belted out the first song. Katie and I were perched near the stage and Jonathan found my eyes a few times and winked at me as he sang to me.
“You’re so lucky Sky, he’s so sexy!”
Yes he is.
They played until nearly midnight and the crowd went crazy after their last song. The screams and claps didn’t stop until the lights came back up and the other music poured through the speakers on the wall. Jonathan found me on the dance floor a few minutes later and he was deliciously sweaty and flushed. I imagined shoving him into a room and totally making out with him, feeling his hard body against mine and his hands all over my body. I was totally lost in my thoughts and felt him tap my shoulder.
I snapped out of it and looked at him.
“Where were you? I could tell your mind was somewhere else.”
“I was thinking about what I want to do to you with you looking so sexy right now.” Me eyes held his and my voice was nearly hoarse as the words flowed out, and I didn’t feel shy this time.
He was speechless and I could tell that he didn’t expect me to say that.
I smiled at him. “I’ll go tell Katie I’m leaving. Be right back.”
I felt like I was floating on a cloud as I went to find Katie. I saw her on the dance floor and I went over to her and whispered in her ear and told her that I was leaving with Jonathan. She winked at me and told me to have fun.
Our student union was open late into the night, so we went there, grabbed some nachos and drinks and sat at a table in the back, away from everyone. I suggested we go there because if I was alone with him in his room, there was no way I would hold back that night.
There were only a couple of people there since almost everyone was probably at the after party, which was fine with me because it gave us a chance to have some privacy.
As he sat across from me I still marveled at how beautiful he was. My eyes roamed over his chiseled face, down the angles of his jaw and I drank in everything about him that I could see. He had a bit of scruff and I could tell that he could grow a full beard if he wanted to. I loved a bit of scruff on a guy and I couldn’t wait to feel Jonathan’s scruff against my cheek again. He was so sexy, confident and mature looking that it was easy to forget that he was only 21. I realized that I was staring at him when I heard him ask the question.
“Do you like what you see?” His dark eyes smoldered as they seductively grabbed a hold of me.
I didn’t back down from his gaze and returned a sincere answer. “Yes, I do.”
He gave me a soft smile. “Me too.” He took a deep breath and then let out a long breath. “Okay, it’s a good thing we are here and not back in my room, I think we’re safer here.”
I gave him a knowing smile. “Me too.”
A small smirk turned up the corner of his mouth and I saw the gleam in his eye as he took a sip of his drink. He put it down on the table and leaned back in his chair, his eyes focused on me.
“Okay, tell me everything. I want to know all about you Sky. We haven’t really had a chance to go deep, and I want to go deep with you.”
“Um, okay, where do you want me to start?”
“The beginning. What was your childhood like?”
A smile spread across my face as I thought about my dad. “It was awesome. You already know that I’m the youngest and I think my dad spoiled me because I was the baby in the family. He had a great relationship with all of us but he and I had something different from his relationship with my brother and sister. Our bond was really tight and I could talk to him about anything. My mom and I have always had a good relationship, and we still do, but my dad was my best friend.”
“You’re talking about your dad in the past. Did something happen to him?” His eyes were full of concern.
I hadn’t yet told Jonathan that my dad had died when I was a little girl because we hadn’t really talked about our families much. We had just covered surface stuff like how many siblings we had and where we lived. I didn’t mind opening up to him about my dad and I wanted him to know how special my dad was. I took a deep breath and glanced down at the table before raising my eyes to his.
“My dad died when I was nine years old, the year after he gave me this ring.” I subconsciously rubbed it with my thumb.
“I’ve noticed that you wear that ring every day, I was wondering if it had any significance.”
“He gave it to me for my eighth birthday and it was the first piece of real jewelry that I have ever received.”
“It’s beautiful Sky.”
“Thanks.” I looked down at it for a minute and then I continued on. “He had to work late one night and as he was driving home, a semi-truck smashed into him killing him instantly. The truck driver had fallen asleep at the wheel and didn’t even know what had happened until it was too late.”
“Oh Skylar, how awful!”
“Yeah, but we got through it and I really feel like my dad is watching over me all the time.”
“I’m sure he is.”
“My mom married my step-dad Jay a few years later and, you met him, he is a really nice guy. He’s been super supportive of all of us, going to every graduation and school play, you know, stuff like that. I talk to my brother and sister every week so we all know what’s going on with the other. My brother works in production in Los Angeles, and my sister lives in Chicago and is a stay at home mom to my six month old niece Sophie. My grandparents, both sets, live about 30 minutes away from the city. It’s cool because they are all friends and they go to lunch together all the time. Aside from losing my dad so soon, it’s been a really good life so far.”
“It sounds like you have a tight family which is awesome. I could see that you were close with your parents when they came to visit. I really like them, and so did my parents. What do your parents do?”
Here it was and I knew that I would have to deal with this sooner or later. I didn’t want to lie to him but I was afraid of what would happen when he found out the truth. He was probably going to walk out of my life and I would just have to accept that. He didn’t strike me as the type to be so rude as to walk out immediately. But I was willing to bet any amount of money that beginning the next day he would suddenly be unavailable. Here goes nothing.
“My mom works at a grocery store and my step-dad is an elementary school science teacher.”
“Oh, cool. So how did your mom and step-dad meet?”
What? That’s it? He didn’t have any sort of weird reaction when I told him what they did. He had to know that we didn’t have any money. I felt relieved and surprised at the same time. Maybe he’s just hiding how he really feels. I would know the truth the next day and I starting to mentally prepare myself for it.
“My mom was looking for nails at Home Depot and she was standing in the aisle for like, 20 minutes trying to figure out which ones she needed. Jay was there getting doorknobs or something, and he saw her looking really confused and thought it was cute so he helped her find what she needed. They started talking and clicked instantly. I liked him from the beginning because he was so nice and he liked my mom so much. When they got married we were all happy for them and I know my dad would be happy that my mom is with a great guy and is not alone. Wow, I went on and on, sorry about that!”
“I could listen to you talk about your family all day, I knew they were really cool people when I met them, so don’t apologize.”
I felt relieved that he didn’t think I was rambling on and that he still wanted to be sitting here with me. Don’t get carried away Sky, I’ll bet tomorrow will show a very different Jonathan Hunter. I pushed that thought out of my mind because I was having the best time just sitting there and talking to Jonathan, getting to know him better. In that moment, there was nowhere in the world I would rather have been. I looked at him and smiled as I reached across the small table and lightly touched his forearm.
“Okay, your turn. Same for you, start from the beginning.”
“Well, I was born and raised on the Upper East Side of New York City and you already know that I have twin sisters that are seven years older than me. They are my best friends and I can go to them about anything. My dad is in finance, and my mom is too. My mom and dad have been married for almost 30 years and they have been the most amazing parents anyone could ask for. My dad travels a lot for work but he always arranged to make it back for every one of my soccer games, he and my mom never missed a single one. My sisters are both professional ballerinas, they started dancing when they were five years old and had their first dance recital when they were six. They tour all over the world with their dance company and I have gone to a lot of their performances but I don’t get to see them very often which sucks, but we talk all the time. My Nana Bunny lives a couple of blocks away from us and is the most spry little thing you’ll ever meet. I think I get my feistiness from her.”
I saw him smile as he talked about his family and it was good to hear how close and supportive they all were of each other. I could see that when they came to visit, he was very close with his parents. I also noticed that he didn’t brag about who his family was, in fact, he didn’t even mention the company at all. Maybe Jonathan Hunter was not so consumed and influenced by money after all.
“And how did your parents meet?”
“That is a crazy story. My dad’s company has an internship program for college students that is very competitive and only two or three people are chosen for the internship, and then at the end of the internship one of those people is offered a permanent position. My mom went to college later in life, she was in her early 30s when she graduated, and she applied for the internship, worked her butt off, and she was hired when it was over. What she didn’t know was that my dad, who is the CEO of the company, was her immediate boss, so they got to know each other and from what they say, sparks flew pretty much from the beginning. They had to be careful not to flaunt it because the company kind of frowned on office place romances but this was “a love that neither one of them could deny” according to them. They were married about a year later and the rest is history. My parents have been an awesome example of the kind of relationship that I want to have one day, I have never met two people who are more in love.”
“Wow, what a cool story, an office place romance that actually lasted!”
“Yeah.” A pensive look crossed his face as he looked off into the distance for a couple of seconds and then looked at me, studying me.
I felt worried that I had said something wrong. “Are you okay?”
He seemed to snap out of whatever it was he was thinking about and smiled at me causing my belly to flutter.
“Yeah, I’m perfect.” He looked at the clock on the wall above my head and raised his eyebrows in surprise. “It’s almost 3:30, we should probably get back to the dorm.”
I felt a little disappointed that our time together was ending because I really liked hanging out with him, but I had to admit that I was getting tired.
“Yeah, we better get back before we turn into pumpkins.” I managed a light-hearted laugh as we both got up. I took one step toward the door and Jonathan gently grabbed my arm.
“Are you staying with me tonight?”
“If you want me to.”
“I definitely want you to. Sky?” His voice was soft.
I turned to look at him, utterly lost in his beautiful eyes. “Yeah?”
He hesitated and then spoke. “Tonight was pretty cool, thanks for hanging with me.”
I gave him a sweet smile and felt warm all over. “Anytime.”
The next morning, I was wide awake at 9:30 even though I should have been exhausted, and Jonathan was still sleeping so I left a note for him telling him I would see him later. That weekend was pretty crazy on campus because Fall Festival continued all day on Saturday and a bunch of people started drinking early that day. It was almost 1:00 p.m. and I hadn’t heard from or seen Jonathan and I had a pit in the bottom of my stomach because this was exactly what I had predicted. He realized I was from the other side of the tracks and he had bolted. I tried really hard to brush off my feelings for him but it was hard because in the time that we had spent together he really made me feel like it was real.
Thankfully it was a warm fall day and there were tons of people in the quad picnicking, playing music, drinking, and just having a good time. Jenn, Katie, Amanda, Brenda and I were sitting near the south end of the quad when Brenda’s boyfriend Jake and a bunch of his friends came over to us and sat down. Amanda and Brenda were nowhere near each other and Brenda didn’t even acknowledge Amanda’s presence.
Brenda beamed at him as he joined us and they looked really happy together so I pushed my judgmental thoughts about his cheating as**s out of my head.
“What’s going on Jake?” I noticed that Amanda gave him a slightly shady smile and I couldn’t believe she had the nerve to do it.
He didn’t look her way as he started talking to everyone. “So, did anyone else rush this year?”
Uh oh, there is definitely some tension there. I looked around to see if anyone else noticed, and Katie and Jenn looked at me giving me a quizzical look. They probably were thinking what I was, that Amanda shouldn’t have said anything.
Sorority life wasn’t really my thing, but Katie really wanted me to rush with her so I did, but I didn’t pledge mainly because I didn’t want to even though I got picked, but also because the fees were expensive. She chimed in quickly. “Definitely, me, Sky, and Jenn rushed but only me and Jenn pledged. Sky left us high and dry.”
A loud cackle pierced the air once again and the hairs on the back of my neck stood on end as I saw Boobs McGee tossing her fake blonde extensions over her shoulder, sitting with a group of girls a few feet away from us. Ugh! She was clearly trying to get someone’s attention but I couldn’t tell whose until I saw Jonathan’s muscular body walking toward us with a group of guys. My heart skipped a beat as he didn’t even glance in her direction, and his eyes zeroed in on me. My heart pounded against my chest cavity as he approached us and my mouth was suddenly dry. How can he have this effect on me every time?
“Jonathan, come join us!” Jake and his friends moved over to make room for Jonathan and his buddies and we ended up sitting in a huge circle with girls outnumbered by guys two to one. I swear the energy shifted when they joined us and every girl, including Brenda, had a huge smile on their face and they were staring at Jonathan waiting for him to speak.
“Hey guys. What’s going on?” Jonathan looked around at everyone and then his eyes settled on me. His deep, smooth voice was enough to make you want to drop everything for him, at least it was for me. I was so happy to see him and so happy that he came to sit by me.
I looked at him and it literally seemed as if everyone else had disappeared and it was just the two of us sitting there talking to each other. “We were just discussing rushing. Jake was wondering if any of us rushed. Did you ever rush?”
“Nah, it’s not really my thing. Did you do it?”
Katie quickly chimed in. “Yes, she did, but she didn’t pledge. She left me all alone.” Katie had a playful pout on her face.
“Hey, what about me?” Jenn chimed in.
“Oh, right, sorry Jenn! Jenn joined the sisterhood with me. Maybe we’ll convince Sky to join next year.
I couldn’t tell if Jonathan liked the idea or not because he sat there looking back and forth between me and Katie and I just couldn’t tell what he was thinking.
I rolled my eyes at Katie but gave her a big smile while doing it, and told Jonathan that I wasn’t sure if I was going to rush next year. Katie feigned shock as she looked at me. “What?”
I knew she was joking because she knew that I had been struggling with whether or not I was going to rush. Greek life wasn’t a huge deal at our school so I really didn’t feel the need or desire to rush, besides I had already met so many good friends in my dorm that I didn’t think I needed the sorority to make more friends.
“We’ll see.” I just left it at that.
“If you decide to do it, I’m sure it will be fun.” Jonathan smiled at me and it just felt good to know that he didn’t disapprove, at least it didn’t seem like he did. He shifted his attention to others in the group and we all chatted and laughed for a while.
A little while later, I took a bathroom break and when I came out of the bathroom, Jonathan was waiting for me.
“Hey.” Just that simple word sent shivers down my spine.
“Hey Jonathan, waiting for me?” I cocked my head to the side and gave him my best flirtatious smile.
“I am, actually. Do you want to go grab dinner later?”
“Just the two of us?”
“Yes, just you and me.” His eyes smoldered as he looked me up and down.
“I would love to.” We had not been out on an official date yet so I couldn’t wait.
His smile reached his eyes as he confirmed the time. “I’ll come by your room around 6:30. Do you like Italian food?”
“I do, it’s my favorite.”
“Okay, cool, we’ll try this little place downtown, it’s supposed to be incredible. The Sig Ep’s are throwing a party in the basement of Kobler Hall later tonight. It’s underground though, so only certain people are invited. We can go to that if you want.”
An exclusive, underground party with Jonathan? Of course I wanted to go!
“I’m sure freshman aren’t invited Jonathan, they probably won’t let me in.”
“The president of the frat’s dad is my dad’s old college roommate. I’ve met him a few times when our families have gotten together, he’s a cool kid. Besides, you’ll be with me.”
“So, you didn’t want to be in a fraternity?”
“Nah, not really my thing, but it’s cool if other people want to do it. I’m not knocking anyone for it.” He shrugged his shoulders and I could tell that it wasn’t a big deal to him so I dropped the subject.
We joined the rest of the group just as they were disbursing. “Katie, where is everyone going?”
She pointed in Brenda and Jake’s direction, “Those guys are going to play volleyball, Tim and his friends are going to play flag football and Jenn, Amy and I are going to meet up with Peter and Alex in the student union . Do you guys want to come with us? We’re going to play pool and just chill for a bit before we go eat dinner.”
Jonathan lightly touched my arm. “You go with your friends, I will see you at 6:30.”
I turned my concerned eyes toward him. “You can come with us, you know.”
“Thanks, but I have to go take care of something. Go have fun, I’ll see you at 6:30.” He leaned down, kissed me on my cheek and walked off and I thought I would melt right into the ground.
Jenn and Amy stood there with their mouths open and eyes as wide as saucers. Katie wasn’t fazed.
“Oh my gosh, Skylar Miller, Jonathan is so into you!” Jenn could barely contain her excitement as she grinned from ear to ear. I had forgotten that they hadn’t really seen me with Jonathan because we usually just went to the library or back to his room. We weren’t really together all that much around campus.
“He totally is! And what exactly is happening at 6:30 missy?” Katie put her hand on her hip and tapped her foot, waiting for my answer.
I didn’t really want to share with all of them but they did see him kiss me so I didn’t have anything to hide. “He asked me out to dinner.”
“You lucky, lucky girl! Wow Sky, you’ve got the most gorgeous guy on campus! If you weren’t so sweet I would hate you.” Amy smiled at me but I could see a hint of envy behind those eyes. She was a really nice girl so I didn’t read anything more into it.
“You guys are all going to meet someone, you’ll see. I bet by the end of this weekend every one of you will have met a guy you like.”
“Hopefully somebody will have a good party tonight. I haven’t heard about anything, have you guys?” Jenn looked at us and I kept my mouth shut because if I told them I was going to an underground party they would want me to get them in and I knew I couldn’t do that. After a few more minutes, we headed to the student union and we all had fun playing pool with the guys.
I went back to our room around 5:00 so that I could take my time getting ready, but not before Katie could chime in. “Have fun, in more ways than one!”
She was silly and I couldn’t help but laugh. I was on cloud nine as I was getting ready and then as 6:30 approached, I started to feel panicked and I could barely breathe. I smoothed my little black dress and checked myself in the mirror. This is silly, you’ve been hanging out with him constantly and you’ve slept in his bed many times! But something about this night felt different. My mouth was super dry so I took a huge sip from a bottle of water I had on my desk, hoping to moisten my tongue. I won’t be able to talk if I can’t get my tongue to stop sticking to the roof of my mouth! I took deep breaths and started to relax a bit as I put the finishing touches on my freshly washed and blow-dried hair, and then I heard a firm knock at the door. My heart was pounding relentlessly as I turned the doorknob. Here we go…
To say that Jonathan took my breath away is an understatement. I didn’t think it was physically possible for him to look any more beautiful, but there he was, standing at my door, doing just that. His thick dark hair lay perfectly on his head and his eyes…his eyes were smoldering and intense as they took me in. He was wearing jeans, cool black shoes, a white shirt with a faint design detail in the fabric, that long cross necklace, that black cuff bracelet and the wide silver band on his middle finger. His hand was holding a beautiful bouquet of sunflowers in a gorgeous crystal vase and I had to fight back the tears. The flowers that were etched on the ring my dad gave me were sunflowers and I knew in that moment that he was there, watching over me.
“Jonathan, they are beautiful, thank you. These aren’t even in season, how did you find them?” I put the flowers on my desk and turned to him, still fighting back the tears.
“I have my ways. I thought you would like them since that is the flower on your ring.” His smile was very sweet and I wanted to fling my arms around him and give him a big hug.
“How did you know? They’re so small.”
“I got a good look when you first showed it to me and I was pretty sure that flower was special to you.”
Without hesitating, I stepped toward him and wrapped my arms around him and held on tight. “Thank you, that is the most thoughtful gift and you are very sweet.”
His arms enveloped me and, for just a minute, I knew that was what heaven must feel like.
I pulled away when I realized that we had been holding each other for a couple of minutes because I wanted more and I don’t think I would have stopped him if he started to kiss me.
“We better get going Jonathan.”
He stood there, looking at me, devouring me. “You’re right, if we stay here any longer we’ll have to lock the door and not leave for hours.”
Hours? I could feel my body responding to him as his words lingered in the air. I had to tell myself to walk out of my room or we would be in serious trouble. My body was crying out for his touch and I had to make sure that I controlled myself around him. It wasn’t time for us to be together yet, but it was coming, I could feel it.
“Sky?” His voice was pure desire.
“Yes?” The word sounded as frazzled as I felt.
“You look beautiful.”
Butterflies fluttered in my belly like crazy. “Thank you, so do you.”
He held my door open for me as we left to go eat dinner.
The restaurant was the most expensive restaurant in town and it was absolutely beautiful. Jonathan had arranged for us to have dinner in a private dining room surrounded by candlelight and it was gorgeous. It was beginning to show that Jonathan had access to a lot of money.
“Jonathan, this place is amazing, but this must be costing you a fortune. We don’t have to eat here.”
“Sky, don’t worry about that, you’re worth every penny.”
He winked at me as I felt a rush of warmth to my cheeks and I felt like a princess being spoiled by her handsome prince. Dinner was the most elegant experience I had ever had. Our drinks were never empty and the waiters were extremely attentive to our every need. We talked about absolutely everything.
“So do you have any idea what you want to do after college Jonathan?”
“Yeah, it’s pretty much written in the cards for me that I will work for my dad and take over the company one day with my younger cousin Jeremy.”
He didn’t look happy when he said it.
“Are you sure about that? You don’t look like you want to do that.”
“Honestly, I would love to be able to tour all over the country, hell, even all over the world for at least a few years, but my dad won’t allow it. He told me that I could play while I was in college as long as it didn’t interfere with my grades, and it hasn’t, but he doesn’t want me to take it beyond college. He’s been telling me since I was a little boy that I would be taking over the business for him one day and that day is just about here. My mom knows how much I love to play and how much I love performing and she’s tried to talk to him for me but he won’t listen, and in our house my dad’s word is the final word.”
“Only a few years? You don’t want this to be your permanent thing?”
“Oh, don’t get me wrong, I would love for this to be all I do, but to not join the company at all? My father would never go for that.”
"But you guys are really good. Does he have any idea how good you guys are? I mean, I think you guys could honestly get a record deal one day.”
"We've actually already had record execs approach us a few times, but we've always had to say no because I know that I can't take this beyond college. I feel bad for the rest of the guys in the band because it’s me that’s holding them back but they claim they all understand. I even told them that I would step down as the front man but they don’t think that they would be able to re-create our magic with someone else.”
Our dessert arrived and the conversation continued.
“Oh Jonathan, I’m sorry. I know how much you love to sing. I wish there was something I could do. Hey, does your dad know that you’ve been approached by record execs?”
"No, I never told him or my mom because I figured there was no point, my future was decided for me a long time ago.”
His eyes were sad and I had never seen him like that and it killed me. There had to be something that could be done.
“I think you should invite your parents to watch you perform. Maybe that will change the way they think about this.”
“I’ve thought about it, but I don’t think they’d come. All my dad talks about is me joining the company. I’ve worked there every summer since I was 15, so he is looking forward to me graduating this year and joining full time, there’s no way around it.”
“It’s Hunter International, right?”
He looked at me with a bit of surprise on his face. “Yeah, how did you know?”
“People talk about you around here Jonathan. Do you not realize how insanely popular you are? I swear some of the girls around here stare daggers at me when they see us together.”
He laughed it off but I could tell he was a little bit uncomfortable. “It’s probably the band thing. I don’t pay much attention to gossip, I’m too busy with other things.” He winked at me and his eyes held mine until I felt the warm flush in my cheeks. When is that going to stop? I spend a ton of time with him and he can still make me blush!
“I think your parents should see you play, if there is any way you can get them to a performance you should do it. It’s important that they see what you love so much.”
He looked down at his fingers for a few seconds and then looked up at me. “Maybe you’re right. I’ll think about asking them to come see the band. Anyway, enough about me, do you know what you want to do after college?”
We finished dessert and he paid the check.
“It’s either going to be law school or finance. Not exactly sure which one yet.”
“You’ll figure it out, you have time. So, are you ready to go check out that party?”
“Sure, let’s go.”
The party was in full swing in Kobler Hall when we arrived. That dorm housed only upper classmen and the president of the frat had arranged to have a party there since that frat didn’t have a house on campus. I did not recognize one person but Jonathan knew almost every single person there.
“How do you know everyone? Our school isn’t that small.”
“You would be amazed at the number of parents that socialize in the same circle. I’ve known quite a few of these guys for a while through camp, summer in the Hamptons, family functions, riding, things like that.”
“Yeah, horseback riding. I’ve competed with some of these guys for years.”
I was no dummy. I knew that riding horses was an expensive hobby and I was beginning to really realize just how much money Jonathan’s family had. I mean, I knew they were rich, but I guess I wasn’t able to understand just how rich and tonight I was learning a lot.
I didn’t grow up riding horses and summering in the Hamptons. I started to feel a little bit self-conscious about the amount of wealth he had. I didn’t know if I would ever be able to fit in with his family. They were nice enough when I spent time with them, but if they already had his career planned, I was sure that they already had a girl picked out for him. They probably would let him have his fun while he was in school, but when it was over I bet they would arrange for Jonathan to meet a girl who’s family matched his family’s pedigree. I was so caught up in my growing insecurity that I didn’t realize Jonathan was introducing me to someone.
“Sky? Are you alright?”
I snapped out if my daze. “What? Oh, yeah! I’m fine!”
“I want you to meet David, he’s the president of the Kappa’s.”
“Hi, it’s nice to meet you David, this is a very cool party.”
“Yeah, just a little something to do to give us all a break.”
We chatted with him for a few minutes and then Jonathan introduced me to a few other people. I actually ended up having a lot of fun and by 12:30 I was exhausted.
“I hate to be lame, but I can barely keep my eyes open Jonathan. Do you mind if we call it a night?”
I saw apprehension in his eyes, I know I did, but I couldn’t understand why because I had practically spent the entire day with him.
Jonathan was silent as we walked back to our dorm and I could tell that something was on his mind. I really hoped I hadn’t upset him by asking to leave the party, but I was tired. He would just have to get over it. We walked into our dorm and Jonathan stopped me once we were inside. His eyes searched mine as his hands gently held my shoulders.
“Sky, do you want to sleep in my room tonight?”
Something was different about the way he asked.
“Yes, of course I do.”
A sexy smile spread across his face and he put his arm around me as we walked down to his room.
“I’ll give you a t-shirt that you can sleep in.”
I felt a little bit nervous and excited at the same time when he closed the door to his room, virtually shutting out the rest of the world. He grabbed a t-shirt for me from his drawer and I remembered that I needed to grab my stuff for my face so I was going to have to go to my room.
“Um, I just need to grab a couple of things in my room. I’ll be right back.”
When I walked back into his room he was sitting on his bed and he looked up at me with those incredible eyes and smiled. My belly flipped over. Oh my gosh, so gorgeous. I turned and closed his door and when I turned back around he was holding up a t-shirt for me. When I reached out to grab it, he didn’t let go and he used the shirt to pull me to him and wrapped his arms around my waist and gave me a soft peck.
“I’m glad you’re here Sky.”
His eyes suddenly became serious.
“I have so much fun with you and no girl has ever made me feel like this.”
His eyes locked with mine and I could see the emotion there. “I love you Skylar.”
I gently held his face in my hands and smiled as my eyes searched his. “I love you too Jonathan.”
He leaned down to kiss me, his lips gently kissing mine and then the kiss became more needing, more wanting. His arms pulled me tighter and I wrapped my arms around his neck. His hands slowly caressed my backside and gave it a squeeze before sliding down to the hem of my dress and caressing my thighs with the back of his fingers. His hands then slipped under my dress and hooked around my panties, sliding them to the floor. I stepped out of them and his hand slowly slid up my inner thigh and two of his fingers found my entrance. They took me by surprise and I let out a small gasp as feelings of pleasure washed over me.
He grabbed my hair with his other hand and held my head in place as his lips covered mine, his tongue hungrily meeting mine. His fingers sped up between my legs as his kiss deepened. Another finger found my entrance and he wove all three together causing me to break our kiss as a moan escaped from my lips. My fingers gripped his upper arms and I threw my head back in ecstasy as Jonathan’s tongue ran along my exposed neck up to my earlobe. His teeth nipped at my ear as he ran his tongue along the outer edge of my ear. My core was throbbing and I could feel the pressure building and when Jonathan rubbed his thumb over my nub as his fingers skillfully moved inside of me, my world exploded into a burst of fireworks. I gripped Jonathan’s arms tightly as my body shuddered with pleasure.
He pulled my dress off over my head and unhooked my bra and when I went to reach for his zipper he stopped me.
“Stand in front of me, I want to see all of you.” I didn’t feel self-conscious at all standing in front of him, so exposed, because the look in his eyes was one of pure hunger.
“You’re so damned sexy. Turn around, I want to see your ass.” His words were firm yet strained, as he appeared to be trying to control himself.
I did what he asked, and the way he asked me, with such authority, was a huge turn-on. In that moment I was willing to do whatever he asked of me.
He walked over to me, stood behind me and groaned as he rubbed my ass, allowing a teasing finger to slide between my legs. My breaths were shallow as my body’s arousal increased.
“It feels like you’re just about ready for me. Turn around.”
I did and he looked so sexy, in a full state of arousal also.
“Get down on your knees and unzip my pants Skylar.”
I knelt down in front of him and unzipped his pants pushing them to the ground and he stepped out of them. His manhood strained against his boxer briefs and I couldn’t wait to see it.
I looked up at him. “These too?”
“No questions. Take off my boxers.”
A nervous excitement came over me as he gave me instructions. Normally I didn’t like for people to tell me what to do, but in this situation I found myself loving it. It added more sexual tension to our already heated encounter.
I took off his boxers, setting his member free and I nearly salivated at what I saw. He was perfect in every way and I couldn’t wait to feel him inside me.
“Now stand up.”
I stood up and I was right next to the bed, my body waiting to be devoured.
He reached in his drawer, grabbed a condom and put it on, and I wrapped my arms around him pulling him down on top of me. I loved the feeling of his weight on me as his manhood pressed against me. I heard a deep groan escape his lips as he kissed his way down my chest to my brea**sts and gathered them in both hands, his tongue playful yet sensual. My fingers raked through his hair as I closed my eyes and enjoyed the delicious sensations that ravaged my body.
I felt him press against me and I sucked in my breath.
“Is this okay?”
I nodded furiously, aching to feel him inside me.
He pressed inside and let out a guttural groan. “Dammit, you feel so good Sky.” The words were ground out as he positioned himself above me. He looked into my eyes as he slowly sank into me and then I felt his lips come crashing down onto mine. He began to move slowly and I wrapped my legs around him, pulling him in deeper.
I could barely think straight as my body experienced pure ecstasy. He pulled out a little bit and then sank into me, and pulled out again a little, and pushed back inside with more force this time. A let out a hiss as I felt goosebumps all over. He leaned down to kiss me on my neck and ran his tongue up to my lips, kissing me deeply. His hands crushed my brea**sts as his tongue explored mine and he began to move much faster inside me.
I lifted my hips to meet each thrust, taking him in deeper. A choked grunt flew out of him as I rolled my hips upward and wrapped my legs even tighter around him.
He paused and rested his head against my neck, his hot breath pouring over my sensitive skin. He started moving again, this time with more force and his thrusts became harder and faster. He slipped a hand down between us and rubbed my sensitive bud, his thrusts coming faster and faster. I could feel the sensation building in my core and it was stronger than anything I had ever felt before. I dug my fingers into his back as my body exploded with pleasure and shuddered uncontrollably. I could barely think straight as I tried to catch my breath and I felt Jonathan shift his weight, grab my hips and thrust hard and fast until his body shuddered over mine. His eyes were clenched shut as his orgasm claimed his body. When he was done, he looked at me, smiling, sweaty and panting. He collapsed next to me on the bed and pulled the condom off, wrapping it in a tissue and tossing it in his trash.
He pulled me into his arms and we lay there for a few minutes until our breathing was normal again. I felt so happy and safe with him and I wished I could have bottled that moment to keep it forever.
He looked down at me as he casually stroked my hair. “I meant what I said earlier Sky. I love you.”
His eyes were earnest as they searched mine and he made my belly flutter. My fairytale was coming true.
I gently held his face in my hands as my eyes searched his, “I love you too, Jonathan,” and I pulled him toward me for a soft peck.
We lay there silently for a couple of minutes, our fingers linked together, and then he asked me a question I did not see coming.
“I’ve been meaning to ask you something Sky. What are your plans for Thanksgiving?”
I looked at him and raised an eyebrow, thoroughly confused about that. He knew that I was going home.
“I’m going home, remember? We talked about it after my parents left a few weeks ago. I told you that I couldn’t wait to see them again at Thanksgiving.”
He hesitated and he looked really nervous.
What is going on?
“I want to invite you home with me for Thanksgiving. I already asked my parents and they would love to see you again.”
Was he serious? Go home with him? I wanted to jump up and down and scream, I was so excited! Of course I wanted to go! But then I remembered my parents and they would be really sad if I didn’t come home. Maybe if I reminded them that I would see them a few short weeks after for Christmas break, they wouldn’t mind so much.
I could not hide my happiness as a huge grin was stuck on my face. “Really?”
“Yes. I know you have to ask your parents, but I really want to spend Thanksgiving with you and I would love for you to meet the rest of my family.”
My stomach instantly dropped into my toes at the thought of meeting the rest of his family. I was going to stick out like a sore thumb and I don’t know that I had it in me to be scrutinized by so many wealthy people.
“You know, I would love to go but I really think I should go home.” I couldn’t even look at him as the words came out.
He must have sensed my hesitation because he placed his finger under my chin and I lifted my eyes to his.
“Hey, what’s going on in that gorgeous head of yours?”
I didn’t know if I should tell him what I was really worried about. We are so different out in the real world, but here in our bubble we are perfect, and I really like our bubble. I didn’t know how to tell him I was afraid that going home with him and meeting the rest of his family would make him realize that I didn’t fit into that world. I wanted to hold on to what we had for as long as I could and I thought if I went home with him, it would all end.
“I think my parents will want me home with them Jonathan.”
“I know, but I think they might understand if you remind them that you’ll see them just a few weeks later over Christmas break. I really want you to meet the rest of my family Sky. I have never brought a girl home, ever, and I want them to meet you because you mean so much to me.”
I lay there mulling over what he just said to me and I could feel myself leaning toward giving in. I did love him and it would be nice to meet the rest of his family, especially since his mom and dad were so different from what I had expected. Maybe I was getting nervous over nothing.
“Do me a favor? Will you at least ask your parents tomorrow?”
“Okay, I can do that.”
He smiled at me and kissed me. “Thank you.”
As we drifted off a few minutes later, all I could think about was going home with Jonathan.
The room was extra bright the next morning and I woke up feeling more rested that I had in months. Jonathan was still asleep and I was cradled in the nook of his arm, right where I wanted to be. My mind wandered to last night as I stared up at the ceiling. Being with Jonathan for the first time was better than I ever could have dreamt. He loves me. I couldn’t help but smile to myself as his words repeated over and over in my mind. I was on cloud nine and then I remembered that he invited me home for Thanksgiving and I instantly had a pit in my stomach. Should I go? I was going to call my parents that afternoon and feel them out about it. He began to stir next to me and his arm tightened around me, pulling me closer to him.
“Good morning beautiful.” His hair was tousled all over his head and he had this sexy smile on his face. I instantly smiled back at him and combed my fingers through his thick waves. It should have been a crime for a person to look so gorgeous in the morning.
“How did you sleep?” Sleep was still coating his voice.
“Like a baby. You?”
“Ditto. I’m starving, do you want to go grab breakfast?”
“Yeah, I just need to hop in the shower, but I can be ready in 20 minutes.”
“My kinda girl.”
“You better believe it.” I winked at him as I hopped out of bed and put on my dress.
“I’ll come upstairs to get you.”
“Okay, see you soon.” I rushed upstairs and got ready in record time. I had just finished throwing my hair in a ponytail when he knocked on the door. Katie was still sleeping so I quickly opened the door and quietly closed it behind me as I left.
We went to a diner off campus that Jonathan liked and had a leisurely breakfast. When we were done we strolled back to campus in the crisp fall air, hand in hand.
“What’s on your schedule for the day Sky?”
“I have two papers to work on and a ton of reading to do. What about you?”
“I have a paper to finish that’s due Tuesday, a few chapters to dig through and we have band practice this evening. I can meet you at the library later if you want.”
“Of course I want! Seriously though, I’ll be there all day so just come find me in our usual spot.”
“Okay. You’re calling your parents, right?”
“Yep, I’ll let you know what they say when I see you.”
We were back at the dorm and Jonathan gave me a wink and a quick kiss before we parted ways.
“See you later.”
Thankfully Katie was not in the room when I got there, I didn’t feel like sharing about Jonathan just yet. I wanted to keep our special night to myself for just a little while.
I grabbed my books and headed off to the library.
I set up camp where Jonathan and I normally studied and then I went into the hall to call my parents. My mom answered and it was good to hear her voice.
“Hi honey! How is everything going?”
“Everything’s good, mom.”
“Classes going okay?”
“Yep, I have a ton of work to do, but nothing I can’t handle.”
“Good. We can’t wait to see you in a couple of weeks.”
“That’s kind of why I’m calling. Um, Jonathan invited me to go home with him for Thanksgiving.”
She was silent for a minute and then she finally spoke.
“He did? Are his parents okay with that?”
“Yes, he asked them.”
“So things must be good with you two.”
“They are, mom. He told me he loved me.” I told her because I always shared big moments with my mom, and I wanted her to know that this wasn’t just a casual thing.
“Oh sweetie, I’m so happy for you! Jonathan is such a nice young man. Well, I’ll check with Jay, but I’m okay with it, especially since we’ll see you at Christmas. But no spending Christmas with Jonathan, Skylar.”
“I won’t mom, I promise, I’ll be home with you guys. Thank you, thank you, thank you!’
“Well don’t thank me yet, I’ll check with Jay and call you later.”
“Okay, mom. I’ll talk to you later.”
“Okay, bye honey.”
I knew that she would be able to convince Jay to let me go, so I was already planning in my head which clothes I would bring as I walked back to my table. Just as I rounded the corner, I saw Barbi, ti**ts first, coming toward me. She was wearing a super low cut black sweater, skin tight skinny jeans and tall black boots. The outfit would have been cute if the sweater wasn’t so low cut, and if someone else was wearing it. Is she glaring at me? What a ho-bag.
I slapped on a fake smile and tolerated a conversation with her. She was a part of Jonathan’s family and he felt bad for her so I had to try to be nice, for him.
“Hey Barbara.” I had to stick that in.
“It’s Barbi and you know it Skylar.” She ground out the words and I may have even seen steam coming from her ears.
“Oh, my bad. So, studying hard?”
She snorted at me and turned up her nose as she tossed those cheap looking extensions over her shoulder. “It all comes pretty easily to me, so I don’t really have to study hard. I’m just here looking for Jonathan.”
I could feel the smirk coming before it was too late to stop it. He won’t be here for hours. “Good luck with that.”
I walked away from her leaving her looking confused and I didn’t care. I had just given up three minutes of my life that I would never get back and I had more important things to do. I shook off bimbo Barbi, shut off my phone and immersed myself in the books.
My mom left a message a few hours later saying that Jay had also given the green light for Thanksgiving. I sat there for a minute and let it sink in: I was going to Jonathan Hunter’s house for Thanksgiving. This cannot really be my life right now.
I told Katie at dinner that I would fill her in on the Jonathan stuff later, and after dinner I went back to the library. I spent a ton of time in the library so Katie knew that when I was deep in study mode she would have to wait to chat with me. I had to maintain a high GPA to keep my scholarship so I wasn’t going to let anything jeopardize that.
Jonathan found me right on time and he set up camp across the table from me, in his normal spot.
He winked and smiled at me. “It’s good to see you, beautiful.” The whisper was soft so that he wouldn’t disturb others around us.
Have I mentioned that I still got butterflies around him? Yeah, they were going crazy.
“It’s good to see you too. Hey, I talked to my mom and my parents said I can go home with you for Thanksgiving.”
A huge grin spread across his face. “Really?” He practically shouted the word and disapproving shhhh’s came from every corner of the room. He widened his eyes and mouthed, ‘oops’, and brought his voice down to a whisper. “That is so awesome, I can’t wait for you to meet everyone else; we’re going to have so much fun Sky. You just made my night!”
We chatted for a couple minutes longer and then we turned to the books. We packed up around midnight and Jonathan casually linked his fingers through mine as we waited for the elevator. When we stepped off of the elevator, the bane of my existence was staring right at us. Why can’t I get away from this girl?
She looked from me to Jonathan and back to me and then narrowed her eyes as she looked down at our hands linked together.
Take it all in, Barbi, he’s with me.
She tried to hide it, but I could tell she was pissed.
“Hey guys, um Jonathan, I’ve been calling you and looking for you all day.”
“Sorry Barbs, I was swamped today. What’s up?”
“My mom called and said our Thanksgiving trip to London is canceled because Ethan has to work, so we’re doing Thanksgiving at your place.”
What?! I have to spend Thanksgiving with her? My mind went blank for a few seconds but I made myself focus on what she was yapping about.
“She wanted me to check with you to see if I could just fly back home with you. If not, I have to book a flight.” She threw a pathetic pout in there at the end and it seemed to work on Jonathan.
“Of course, Barbs, no problem!”
Ugh, he was too nice to this girl and he was totally blind to what she was trying to do. But I saw it, and I wasn’t going to let her think she had everyone fooled.
“Oh, well this will be fun!” I plastered an enormous fake grin on my face.
The look of confusion on her face was priceless.
Jonathan chimed in which made it even better.
“Yeah, we’ll all fly together, it’ll be fun.”
She looked back and forth between us, completely in the dark.
“Am I missing something here?”
“Oh, sorry, Barbara, I guess I forgot to mention it when I saw you earlier. Jonathan invited me to go home with him for Thanksgiving.” My smile was pure saccharin as I watched her seething in front of me.
I could see that she had to fight to keep from screaming and it was hilarious.
“What?!” Looks like the screaming won that fight.
“Yeah, I invited Sky to come home with me. We’re going to have an awesome Thanksgiving.”
“I can’t wait!” I couldn’t help but throw that in.
“We’re going back to the dorm Barbs. Are you studying or are you going back too?”
“Um, I’m going back to my dorm.” The wind had definitely been let out of her sail.
“Sweetie, is it okay if we walk her back? It’s late.”
I would have done anything he asked me to in that moment because he called me ‘sweetie’ in front of Barbi and she was not happy.
“Sure.” I smiled up at him and my eyes slid over to her as I threw her one of my best smirks.
We all walked back to her dorm, with Jonathan and Barbi doing most of the chatting. We dropped her off at her dorm and then went back to our own. Once inside, I told Jonathan I was going to sleep in my room that night because I had been neglecting Katie.
“Okay, I guess.” He looked a bit sad so I put my arms around his neck and looked into his eyes.
“I will sleep in your room tomorrow night, I promise. I think my friend misses me so I have to give her some time too, okay?”
“Okay.” He kissed me, the kind that makes your toes curl, and then hugged me tight. “I can’t wait until tomorrow night.”
The next day, during breakfast, I brought Katie up to speed on everything that had been going on with Jonathan and me, and I also told her that I was going home with him for Thanksgiving.
“You are kidding! Sky, that’s a big deal, you know? You guys are totally going to get married one day, I just know it.”
“Married? Katie, you’re talking cra cra right now. We’re a little young for that and we’ve only been dating for a short time!”
“I know but there is something different with you guys. I could tell at the beginning of the year that he was into you the first time he saw you when he was on stage. I’m telling you Sky, he’s the one, and I better be in the wedding!”
We giggled like school girls as we put our trays away and headed out. I loved Katie, and I knew she was happy for me, but marriage? That was a bit too far in the future for me to even think about, but if I was being honest with myself I knew that there was no one else that I could ever see myself with.
I had a study group that afternoon after my last class and then I went to the rec center to work out. As I was on the elliptical, my mind kept going to my trip home with Jonathan. I had already decided what I was going to wear on Thanksgiving so I had that covered and it was one less thing for me to stress about. What I was most worried about was how his family would receive me once they found out that I did not come from money. His parents definitely didn’t give me the impression that they were snobs like that, but I had no idea how his grandmother would react to someone like me. I had never been around anyone with their kind of money, so that part was stressing me out big time.
I grabbed dinner and then finished the night at the library. Jonathan told me he had band practice until 11:00 that night so he asked me to just come to his room anytime after 11:30 when I was ready to go to bed. I thought it was kind of weird that he had practice so late, because they never practiced after 9:00, but I didn’t question him about it.
Katie was already sleeping when I got back to our room at about 11:00, so I quietly put my book bag down, grabbed my bedtime stuff and went down to Jonathan’s room a little bit early. I hadn’t seen him all day and I couldn’t wait to be in his arms. His door was usually open if he was around and since his door was closed when I got there I figured he was still at practice, so I decided to wait for him in his room.
He never locked his door so I turned the knob and as soon as I stepped inside, to say that bad memories came flooding back to me is an understatement, I felt like I was hit by a hurricane of bad memories. Lying in Jonathan’s bed, apparently totally naked, was Barbi with her hair all messy and unruly. She sneered at me as I stood there, frozen, with my mouth open. This is not happening right now. The words were very familiar to me.
At first I couldn’t process what I was seeing but then I realized that she was naked in his bed, holding the sheets over her breasts, smirking at me.
That smirk put me over the edge and I snapped.
“What the f**k do you think you’re doing?”
A sneer curled up the right side of her lip. “I’m doing what I do every week around this time. You didn’t know, did you?”
I was so confused. Was she implying that they…? There was no way. Jonathan wouldn’t do this to me, would he? I felt my cheeks burning hot as my heart tried to bulldoze its way out of my chest. But why is she here? And why is she looking like she was just fucked from here to Timbuktu and back? My stomach dropped into my toes and I felt like I was going to vomit. No, no, no, no, no!
I spun on my heel and flew out of his room to find him. He had to be around somewhere. There’s no way this crazy bitch is telling the truth! There’s no way that Jonathan would cheat on me!
As I rounded the corner, I ran right into Jonathan who was just coming from the shower. He had a big smile on his face when he saw me and I was briefly caught off guard by his glistening chest, but then I remembered what I just saw. Was he washing away evidence of being with her? I glared a hole right through him.
“You lying, cheating son-of-a-bitch!”
He looked totally confused. “Skylar, keep your voice down! What is wrong with you?”
“I can’t believe you would ask me that!”
He grabbed my arm and his eyes bore into mine. “Sky, what is wrong? I have no idea what is going on here!”
“Maybe the slut waiting for you in your bed will fill you in!”
“What?! Is Barbi still in my room?”
Oh my god, he’s admitting it!
The tears spilled down over my cheeks without warning and I ran away from him up to my room and threw myself on my bed in a fit of sobs. Katie started to stir, and then sat up when she heard me balling. I tried to be quiet but the pain was too great. She hopped onto my bed and put her arms around me.
“Sky, what happened?”
All I could get out through my sobs was Jonathan’s name.
“What did he do?!”
A couple of minutes later, Jonathan knocked lightly on my door.
“Skylar, please let me in.”
“Go away, I never want to see you again!”
“I didn’t do anything wrong!”
“I’m not stupid Jonathan, I have eyes and I know what I saw! I thought you were different!”
“Skylar, open this door right now!”
“Go away Jonathan, it’s over between us, do you hear me, over! Forget you ever met me!” I didn’t care that we were probably creating a scene in the hallway.
My sobs wracked my body and I wanted the bed to just swallow me up.
Katie got up and opened the door a crack and I could hear her whispering to him.
“Just give her some time Jonathan, she’s super upset right now. I’m sure she’ll come talk to you tomorrow.”
That seemed to be enough because he walked away and she closed our door.
“Katie, how could I be such a fool! Why would a guy like that be faithful? Barbi was down there! He can have any girl he wants and apparently he does!”
“I don’t know Sky, she’s a scheming bitch. Maybe it wasn’t what you thought.”
I gave her a deadpan look, my face flush and stained with tears. “Katie, she was naked in his bed. How can that be anything but what it looks like?”
“Oh.” She didn’t say anything after that.
“I’m so stupid Katie. Anybody but me could have seen this coming. The whole campus has probably been laughing at me behind my back this whole time with me thinking I was the only girl in his life. He’s gorgeous, rich, smart and in a popular band. How could I be so dumb?” The tears rolled softly down my cheeks.
“Sky, you’re not dumb, don’t beat yourself up. Maybe this is all a big misunderstanding. He looked really upset when I talked to him. Maybe sleep on it and talk to him tomorrow?”
“No, I’m done. No more cheaters for me. He can forget about Thanksgiving, I’m going home. I have nothing else to say to him. Anyway, enough about this, it’s late. Let’s go to sleep.”
She gave me a big hug and then climbed in her bed. “Okay, try to get some sleep.”
“I will. And Katie? Thanks for listening.”
She smiled at me. “That’s what I’m here for.”
As I curled up in my covers, I replayed the whole scene again. I kept going back to her saying they did that every week and I tried to remember if there were blocks of time where it could have happened, and I realized that it could have happened any time because I was not with Jonathan every minute of the day. Had I really been so naïve? Sadness overwhelmed me as the tears hit my pillow.
I should have stuck to my original plan and stayed away from guys. But Jonathan drew me in, I thought he was different, and I thought he was the guy of my dreams. How could I have been so wrong? As I started to drift off to sleep, tears were still rolling down my cheeks and I wished I had never met Jonathan Hunter. Why does love have to hurt so much?
Tag der Veröffentlichung: 07.02.2016
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Still healing from an unforgivable betrayal, the last thing she needed was to see the gorgeous lead singer of Sonic Blaze belting out lyrics to her from that stage. He was tall, dark and sexy; everything she should run from, but didn't want to. Her world is turned upside down the night of her dorm meeting when she looks up to see the lead singer of the band introducing himself to the room as their Resident Advisor. College senior, Jonathan Hunter, is even more gorgeous than she remembered and he seems to have eyes only for her. When she finds out he is the son of Joshua Hunter, Billionaire CEO of Hunter International, all of her insecurities rise to the surface. Can a girl from meager means really fit in with such a wealthy family like his? And has Skylar misjudged Jonathan? Torn between his love of music and family business obligations, Jonathan turns to Skylar for comfort. But is she the only one he is turning to?