Someone to Love, page 15
So far, I’ve had a pretty shitty birthday.
I managed to avoid Cruise on at least two occasions since my impromptu confessional. First, after class, when he tried to tackle me like a defensive lineman in the hall and again in the library where he tried to flag me down, but I simply made a beeline for the stacks. Who knew that hidden among rows and rows of dusty old textbooks you could find such an odd assortment carnal perversion, ranging from blowjobs to hand jobs—covert coitus with pants slightly sagging, the skirt perfectly adjusted. It was practically a Karma Sutra performance piece in there. I think they should seriously consider renaming it “The Raunchy Reference Center.”
I begrudgingly make my way to the art building where Professor Webber meets me near the door, with a purple robe in hand.
“You’re late.” She bites the air as if I’ve intentionally decided to show five minutes past the hour to stage some grand entrance because God knows I want to bare my breasts in style. Which reminds me, I meant to shave my area this morning, but was waylaid by Cruise and his sudden need to flash me.
It’s probably not that bad. It’s not like I’m out to impress the peanut gallery. In fact, the less appetizing I look, the less likely I am to score unwanted phone numbers once the hour is through.
Webber scuttles me off to a dressing room, and I’m quick to strip to nothing. I glance down at the dark triangle spraying out over my thighs and gasp at my unkempt oversight.
Gah! I’m a bush. This is horrible. This is far worse than I thought. Not only am I slightly out of shape and my boobs have picked this day to sag like oversized water balloons, but I have the Butchart Gardens sprouting from my ass—quite literally.
I’ll have to take the cash and catch the next flight back to California after this debacle, or I’ll be risking some horrific nickname that will haunt me the rest of my natural days like, Bushzilla, or Pubic Enemy Number One, Magic Carpet Ride, or Carnal Curtains. I suppose after this haired mess I’ll owe everybody here one big “pubic” apology.
“Let’s go, let’s go!” Professor Webber spurs me on with her ability to herd me from the makeshift closet.
I don my robe and file in behind a man in purple, staring down at his feet as we conduct the walk of shame to our respective seating areas. It didn’t occur to me until now that the metal stool I’ll be displaying myself on will feel like someone tucked a glacier under my bare bottom, at least for the first few minutes.
From my peripheral vision, I see his robe fall in a lavender puddle to the floor.
I take a deep breath. What in the hell have I gotten myself into? Taking off my clothes in public? What’s next? Strip clubs?
Okay. Relax. Nobody is going to care what I look like. This is in the name of art. The entire class is probably thrilled to have some youth to contrast the geezer standing next to me.
It’s like ripping off a band-aid. I just need to do it and not put too much thought into it.
A cool breeze hits me as I pull back the robe. I feel the fabric release from my shoulders and trickle down my body with a pronounced finality. I pretend to inspect the chipped polish on my toes when really I’m trying my hardest to die from mortification because right about now death seems the only plausible way out of this mess.
I glance up at the familiar voice.
Standing before me is a very gorgeous, very surprised, and very much naked Cruise Elton.
“Shit!” I cross my hands over my chest and knock my knees together.
It’s him! Where the hell is the geezer?
I do a quick once-over and suck in a breath.
Double shit! I just saw it! Right here in front of at least forty-five different witnesses, I’ve just laid eyes on Cruise Elton’s package for the very first time.
My stomach cinches. My eyes drift right back to where he hangs long and lean down his thigh, and in no fucking way did he ever get it chopped in half in some motorcycle accident.
“Take a seat.” Professor Webber barks out the order and both Cruise and I are quick to comply.
Cruise settles into his chair, never taking his eyes off mine. He gives the tiniest hint of a lewd smile, and I can feel my entire body flood with heat.
I scowl over at him. Damn pervert. I wouldn’t put it past him to shake this kind of delicate information out of poor wire-haired Webber. Although, I suppose, he could be in the market to turn a quick buck.
“God, she’s turning beat red!” Someone shouts from the periphery.
Professor Webber lets out a few viral claps. “Don’t be afraid to use color.”
Great. Not only will I be a hairy bush, but I’ll look as if I’m about to catch fire, I’ll be the burning bush. And right about now, I’d do anything for a gallon of gas and a couple of matches to put an end to this misery.
I glance back over at Cruise, and my eyes dip down his chest. It’s smooth and wide as a building. Cruise takes immaculate care of his body. He would never show up for “strip beyond your skivvies day” and not be courteous enough to manscape his scrotum. Speaking of which. My gaze dips a little lower, slow and sweet like honey and I see a sparse line of dark brown curls that lead down from his belly button like a neatly hedged treasure trail, then an enormous fold of skin lying over his thigh and…Oh. My. God. It’s growing. It’s rousing to life slow and lethargic, like a giant, waking from a very long slumber.
Cruise needles me with the beginnings of a nefarious smile. He’s blooming to life, and it’s all for me.
The entire class breaks out in a viral gasp as if Cruise is doing something insanely unnatural like levitating or swiveling his head 360 degrees. But this is completely natural, and perhaps the best part is, it’s directly in response to yours truly. I hope.
Cruise digs in a smile and his dimples ignite. I want to dive into them. I want to dive into Cruise, use him as a covering and a shield. My eyes roam back down his body, and I take him in, fully formed and beautiful as his body pridefully salutes me from too far a distance to fully appreciate.
Cruise Elton just gave me the best birthday present ever, and he doesn’t even know it.
Kendall Jordan is a real live wet dream. And if I’m not careful, my dick is going to involve the authorities soon because I’m a thousand percent sure having an erection in public, while seated in front of the student body, is something akin to a felony.
I drink Kenny down with her creamy white skin, her pink lips burst like cherries. Her chest swells like two perfect cantaloupes, the dark hair buried between her legs is like a sea of ripe currents, and suddenly I’m very fucking hungry for cantaloupes and currents.
I try to absorb what’s happening. That somewhere in the innocence of trying to purchase a winter coat for Kenny, I’ve put my new position as “professor” on the line and now, in a sudden turn of events, I’m not only naked in front of strangers, but in front of the woman I love. And I do love Kenny. Come hell or high water, I’m going to let her know tonight. Whether or not she decides to speak to me afterwards is entirely up to her. She didn’t care for the fact I kept my status as faculty from her. I’m guessing spontaneously exposing myself in her art class is something she would’ve liked to have been clued in on—especially in the event she were about to shed a few layers herself.
Professor Webber steps in and looks right at me. “Good job,” she whispers. “Never in all my years of teaching have I seen something like that before. Have you considered a career in the adult film industry? You have serious equipment that shouldn’t be ignored.”
I shoot her a look. I don’t feel the need to propagate the fact I’m well endowed. I’ve long since been aware of the fact it’s an anomaly. The last thing I want is to freak Kenny out and send her running for vaginal cover, opting for less amply gifted men to contend with like Cal and his nonexistent member. Which reminds me, I’ve yet to beat the crap out of him.
“Turn around so the rest of the class can see you.” Webber motions
I try to settle my gaze on the clock on the wall. Nothing like staring down the minute hand to make the time crawl by.
A blond in a red coat smiles at me, and everything in me freezes.
Blair. If there’s one thing in this world that can kill my hard-on faster than a wrinkled hag suggesting I try my hand at porn, it’s my ex-girlfriend.
Just when I didn’t think things could get any worse.
I can feel her looking at me, burning a hole through every square inch of my body with her unwanted stare. Blair had her chance with my flesh, and she wasn’t interested in keeping me or my dick around, so I don’t know what makes her think I’d be desperate enough to let her back in my life. Although, if Kenny weren’t here…if I never gave her all of my power without her even knowing it, would I want Blair back? I’m quick to deduce a flat-out, no.
The hour finally draws to an excruciating end with my manhood rendered temporarily peniplegic thanks to the fact Blair held me hostage with her libido-killing lasers.
I pick up a robe and cover Kenny from behind, brushing her hair with a kiss that could have easily been mistaken for nothing more than the simple act of passing, even though none of the ways I love Kenny can be classified as a simple act of passing. Everything about the way I plan on showing her my affection, both physically and emotionally, will be nothing short of well-engineered.
“I believe you dropped this.” Blair pipes up from behind, and I take my robe from her before whipping it on. “Good show.” She tilts her head into me.
Kenny has already made a beeline for the dressing room, so I don’t mind unleashing a little bit.
“The show wasn’t for you, Blair. Nor will it ever be.” I don’t wait for the shocked look to register on her face. Instead, I dart into the room where I left my belongings and do a quick change, so I can catch the woman I love before she races back to the West Coast for good.
“Hey, beautiful,” I say, catching up with Kenny outside the art building. The evening sky encroaches overhead, desolate and grim with ominous clouds that hold a soft blue patina. “You strip here often?”
“Not as often as you salute the queen.” She gives an impish grin. Her hair whips around her neck in long, dark sheets. “It’s my birthday.”
Everything in me breaks for Kenny. She fidgets with her backpack, and her perfectly painted nails shine like sirens. Her sweater slips off her shoulder, and her bra strap is showing. A part of me wants to fix it, fix everything for her. But she’s sexy as hell and perfect, and there isn’t a thing about her I want to change.
“Why didn’t you tell me it was your birthday?” A strong ache pulls in the pit of my stomach. Everything about today must have been pretty lousy for her, starting with me attacking her with my towel, the sad confession about her stepfather’s words, then the finale—baring her perfect body to fifty different students when I wish to God it were only me in that room with her.
Professor Webber makes her way outside, flagging us down in a panic. “I’m glad you’re still here.” She hands us each a check. “You’re both welcome back, anytime. Of course, you’ll have to be paired together. Your chemistry sizzled off the page.” She winks over at me before darting into the unseasonably clear evening.
Kenny and I emit giant white plumes with our heavy breathing as if we were on the cusp of discovering something far more intimate about one another than our bare bodies could ever reveal.
Kenny waves her check in the air. “Food and rent.” She tries to hand it to me, but I won’t take it. Kenny did that out of obligation to me. She wanted to help. “I thought maybe you could call someone to look at the heater, but it somehow magically fixed itself this morning.” She shrugs.
My stomach hardens like a stone when she says it. She wanted to repay me—help me fix the furnace I wouldn’t turn on in hopes she’d keep landing in my bed night after night. I’m worse than a predator, and I hate myself for it.
“Well”—she wraps an arm around my waist. I can feel her shiver as she tucks in close—“let’s get me to a bar and celebrate the fact I can legally inebriate myself. God knows I need a stiff one.” Her eyes spring wide as she realizes her Freudian gaff.
“Beer or wine?” I ask, trying to keep a straight face.
“Oh, honey, I think this calls for something much, much harder.”
I tick my head back a notch as I take her in. Kenny is a vixen in a league all her own and she doesn’t even know it.
Maybe that slip wasn’t so Freudian after all.
In fact, I do believe Kendall Jordan just propositioned the hell out of me.
“Happy birthday, Kenny.” I press in a gentle kiss, soaking in all her beauty as I pull away.
“Thank you, Cruise.” She bats those doe eyes at me and reduces me to a big ball of hormones just begging to detonate.
I’m going to tell Kenny that I love her on her birthday.
The night, glows in hues of purples and navy with fresh snow on the ground as we head out to properly inebriate Ms. Jordan. I followed Kenny home, so I could fulfill my role as designated driver.
The University Bar and Grill glows like a pumpkin lit up on Halloween with all the same devilish intent that particular night conjures—along with an assortment of pornographic implications thrown in for good measure.
“Drinks!” Kenny hops up and down. I’ve never seen her take a sip of anything remotely fermented or manufactured in a microbrewery, so the fact she plans on hitting something “hard” amuses me on every level. I predict I’ll be washing out vomit from the inside of my truck in about three hours.
We walk up to the pub and I lay my hand over the frozen door handle, pausing for a second.
“You want to talk about what happened in my class?” I can feel my Adam’s apple rise and fall as I swallow. “I know that had to be tough for you.”
“It’s my birthday.” It comes out far sadder than expected. “Maybe some other time.” She reaches up and cradles my face for a moment, and her lips part as if she’s about to say something profound, but nothing comes. I’m not sure what I expected. Hell I know what I wanted, but what I want and what I get seem to be two different things on a consistent basis.
I open the door, and the scent of perfume and tequila wafts over us, creating an equally intoxicating combination. A blast of rock music hits us like a volatile force field as we engulf ourselves in the questionably upright establishment. We play bumper bodies as Kenny leads us to the bar in haste as if she’s afraid they might run out of liquor before we get there.
This was the place to be on any given night when I was keeping myself physically entertained—“dick kicks” is what I lovingly referred to the time I spent trolling these unsacred halls.
“Sex on the beach!” Kenny chirps to the bartender before she hits the stool.
“I can make that happen,” I shout up over the live band that’s busy destroying a perfectly good set of speakers. Hell, I’d make any fantasy come true for Kenny.
Her tongue runs over the top of her lip, and she intensifies her gaze into mine like a promise.
“Looking forward to it.” She relaxes her elbows on the bar and rocks steady to the music.
“So what are you looking forward to tonight?” I lean in until our shoulders touch and order a beer I plan on nursing until Kenny passes out.
She scans the room and frowns. “I don’t know. I was thinking about having a fire sale with my virginity. You know, get it over with so I can start mishandling the boys at Garrison.” She gives a quick wink.
I think we both know she’s not that person—that she never really was. But maybe all she needs is one more push in the wrong direction to realize it. I just hope once she does—she also realizes she might have feelings for me. Because what I’m feeling is too wonderfully large, too fucking fantastic to ever be one-sid
“Body shots.” I pull my cheek back, no smile. “Lesson for the day is letting some slopped-up, drunk, virally hormone-induced frat boy lick your stomach clean.” I try to hold back a laugh. If that doesn’t send her running for the hills, I don’t know what will.
“Body shots?” She looks around uneasy as she chews on her lips. God, how I’d like to chew on those full lips for her. “So you’d let some frat boy defile me that way, huh?” Her face deflates at the idea.
My heart gives an unnatural thump, alerting me to the fact I should probably say no. That I should pony up right here, right now at the bar, and fill her in on a few pertinent details about how I really feel—how I’d hang any frat boy by his shoestrings who tried to get anywhere near her, including my ex-pal, Cal.
She swallows hard at my omission of words and bolts over to the viper pit, teeming with profusely tanked Greeks, at the other end of the room.
“Kenny, wait.” I jump out of my seat just as the bartender sets down our drinks. Kenny hops up on the bar and sways her hips to the music like a seasoned stripper. Her jacket is missing, and her shirt is unbuttoned all the way to the bottom with the ends tied just under her rack, and I know damn well that’s country for fuck me.
“Shit,” I say, trying to squeeze my way through the crowd. “Kenny,” I shout up at her, but she’s avoiding me all together. Way to piss her off on her birthday.
“Body shots!” She yells over the music with the enthusiasm of a cheerleader during a Hail Mary touchdown. She lies on the bar and I lose sight of her due to the insurmountable interest she’s drawing from the boozers sporting their boners on their sleeves.
I try to wrestle my way through the crowd, catching a glimpse of her between drunken frat boys, only to find some idiot’s face buried in her chest, rocking his head side to side.
Kenny sits up and tries to bat him away as I plow through the tangle of bodies. I lose any polite bone I may have ever had and blow through men and women alike before snatching the asshole by the back of his shirt and launching him across the room like a ballistic missile.
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