Never been nerdy, p.9
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       Never Been Nerdy, p.9

           C.M. Kars
 

  Did he just say no to me, again?! I end up moving closer to his door since I hear talking coming from inside.

  “And that, gentlemen, is how it’s done!” Dean crows what can only be his victory speech to his dogs.

  Oh, I give him forty-eight hours before he’s begging to sleep with me.

  Game on, Carter.

  Chapter 9

  It’s Sunday night. A long Sunday, full of preparing, of trying to relax, and vehemently trying to stop looking at my phone to see if Dean is going to text. I want him to text. Maybe I can even persuade him that good karma grows exponentially if great sex if involved between the two people.

  Alas, I have work tomorrow. So much of it, in fact, that I need to be awake and lucid and ready to kick some corporate ass at 7:00 am. I haven’t ironed any of my skirts or blouses, and I still haven’t decided which pair of heels to wear with my potential outfit for tomorrow morning, and I’m trying to do some last minute preparations for the meeting tomorrow by trying to memorize an Encyclopedia’s worth of stats and facts.

  Being an adult sucks.

  This means I’m going to have to wake up early early tomorrow morning to get my shit in gear. Which means I need to be sleeping, right now.

  And that elusive bitch isn’t going to be closing my eyes anytime soon.

  I need to shut off my brain, I need to think of something calming and pleasant and maybe more than a little boring so I can fall asleep.

  Maybe I should think of Mom droning on about her second wedding, how it’s going to be better and bigger than the first one, all new and improved at a higher ticket price. Shit, and I have to go to a rehearsal dinner Friday night.

  What a goddamn clusterfuck that’s going to be. Malcolm is gonna shoot his mouth and say something to piss me off, then I’m going to knock him out. Mom will never speak to me again, but that seems like a fair enough price to pay if I can knock out a couple of teeth.

  I fist my sheets. This isn’t helping me get sleepy, it’s making me mad.

  Okay, okay. Sera. Sera and Hunter. Sera and Hunter and Matty living happily ever after in their love-nest where everything is fucking tulips and sunshine and nobody’s worrying over the fact that there’s an expiration date on this relationship.

  I pull in some air through my nose, filling up my ribcage with all the oxygen I can hold in. I exhale out slow and long, imagining every muscle is compressing the air and restless energy out of me.

  Yeah, fat chance that’s going to work.

  I huff out another breath, staring holes into the ceiling, wishing it was something like white puffs of clouds and I was sitting on a beach down south, letting the sun soak into my skin and bones. It’s the kind of lazy that I would pay serious money to keep for six months out of the year, or at least long enough to escape the brutal Montreal winters.

  God damn it, I need to make more money. I need to work more to do that, though. No one gets a promotion because they have a fine, tight ass and look killer with some red lipstick on. I would definitely win that jackpot, but there’s no lottery to play, and my standards are high enough that sleeping with the boss doesn’t really add up in my head.

  I hear some cars pull out of the underground lot below me, then rip some rubber onto the street. Idiots. They could hit someone. Just like I did, and all my luck is shot to shit because of course, of course, the guy I hit had to be my first ‘love’.

  I slam my pillow over my face and refuse to breathe. Even my body is more stubborn than I am, and my pillow is launched across the room while I get some air into my lungs.

  My cheeks burn when I think of Dean and I back then. We were just kids playing at being grown up. I was so needy, ugh, and clingy. I was the neediest, whiniest sixteen-year-old ever, and I have no idea what kind of magic trick I pulled to have kept Dean sticking around until I broke him into little itty bitty pieces.

  Even if I don’t want to, I’m sucked into my memories like Harry Potter was when he fell into that silver-looking thingy and saw Dumledore’s memories. Now I sound just like Sera – and Dean.

  Dean.

  Ten years ago his looks were so different, and hidden behind a layer of little boy that made his features softer, sweeter – more of a cute guy, instead of the mega hottie he is right now. Oh, he’s still adorable, but he’s got some of that magnetic factor now that makes a girl throw off her panties and get him in an enclosed space. He didn’t induce any feeling like that way back when, but he was sweet and kind, and he made me feel special.

  I hated high school; I hated the people in it. I hated the fakeness behind every face, the way Sera and I were constantly judged. Yeah, my best friend’s fat, who the fuck cares?

  But they all did, all the royalty that were the popular kids in school. I wonder where those fuckers are now. And then there was Dean Carter, gangly tall, although shorter than he is now, but only by a few inches. His skin was a bit worse for wear, and he looked like he couldn’t pick up a football, let alone throw it huge distances.

  All it took to hook me in was a genuine smile.

  I’m not Sera, and I know that male-kind – men and boys alike - enjoy looking at me. I’ve seen the leery and sleaze; I’ve seen the predatory gazes of men who are used to getting what they want and I don’t touch those fuckers at all.

  Dean was different – at least back then he was. The corner of his mouth hitched up at me like it was waving a quick hello and his eyes stayed glued to my face instead of dropping down the new curves of my body. His eyes fluttered closed, and the smile went away, and when he looked up at me again, it was like I was watching a stranger waving goodbye from a lonely island.

  He hiked up one shoulder and ran his hand through his much shorter hair and gave me a tired wink, like we were both in on some secret. I frowned at him and bit my tongue so I wouldn’t say anything stupid.

  He wore dark-wash jeans that were too big for him, and his shirt didn’t sit right at the shoulders and billowed around his ribcage and abdomen. Dean’s green eyes are the stuff that screenwriters focus on and dream about and I had the good fortune to stare at them for countless hours when we decided we were going to be together.

  He couldn’t kiss for shit, though, and I had to teach him what I liked and what I didn’t like, but he was always patient and attentive and never made me feel like a whore for wanting what I wanted.

  And then we decided we were going to be each other’s firsts and it all went downhill after that.

  My phone chirps under my pillow, and I jackknife up on the bed, heart pounding, cheeks burning at being caught thinking about Dean. As if he’s lurking outside, somehow knowing that I was thinking about him.

  I scramble to get to it before it lets another chirp, swearing that it’s been lost in the sea of sheets and blankets and papers that I sleep with so I can be on my A-game at work the next morning.

  “Hello? HELLO?” I yell into my phone, free hand searching for the light on my nightstand. Shit, there goes my body lotion – I probably cracked the bottle and have to go fishing for it under the bed once this call’s over.

  “Hey, sweetums,” Dean coughs. I pull the phone away from my ear, and look down at the call display. He’s put his caller ID as ‘Handsome Devil’. “I’m hoping I didn’t wake you, although it’s an absurdly early hour to be going to sleep,” he says, and there’s some sort of wind interference on his side of the line that means he’s walking outside.

  Christ, I hope no one hits him with a car.

  “It’s eleven thirty, Dean, what the hell are you doing calling me?”

  “I decided to call and get the deets for tomorrow night.”

  My right eye starts twitching so the world jiggles on that side. I close both eyes, but the little dance my eyelid is doing hasn’t gotten the memo.

  “Why didn’t you just text me? I could’ve been sleeping!” I throw an arm in the air and plop down on my goose-feather-down duvet. The smack against the sheets goes a long way to soothe my soul.

  “Could’ve means
you weren’t. You’re just mad that I called you.”

  “You’re starting to piss me off,” I snap. I’m so tired, and I can’t deal with this right now. “I’ve got to be in the office real early tomorrow morning and you’re cutting into my hot-monkey-sex with Jax Teller dream-land time. Cut to the fucking chase.”

  “Do you always swear this much? Or is it something I bring out?”

  “I’m four seconds away from launching my phone across the room.”

  “I don’t remember you being this violent. I really don’t. You were always just the sweetest.”

  My mouth pulls a quick smile together without me wanting it to. “Shut up, Dean.”

  “What time do you finish work tomorrow? You want us to spend time together for your ‘so-called’ apology. Since I know how you drive, I’ll be the one securing a vehicle. I’d like to know when I can come pick you up,” Dean says. More wind whistles through his phone and I shiver like I’m standing right next to him in my undies and tank.

  I sigh because tomorrow’s going to be a long day. “If I’m lucky, I could be outta there by seven.”

  Dean snorts, and my heart tries to make happy sounds. “And what time do you start?”

  “I should be at the office for seven.”

  Dean takes in a sharp breath, and sniffs. Late October is not the best time to go for a stroll at night. “You sure you have yourself a job over there and not some sort of prison sentence?”

  “You’re hilarious, Dean. Really. I don’t know how I survived without you all these years. My poor little heart has been broken since the day you walked out of my life. The sun has ceased shining, the entire universe is ending because you have been far away from me!” I lament.

  Dean’s quiet for a time, and then I realize what I’ve said.

  Busted. The bitch of the year award goes right here! I’d like to thank my mother, for teaching me how to do it best…

  “Glad you share the feeling,” he says quietly. The wind is exceptionally loud, and I’m acutely aware of my breath, here, alone in my apartment. “I’ll pick you up tomorrow night from your place. Get home from work on time; I hate waiting around.”

  No words of bye or undying love when he hangs up on me.

  Motherfucker hung up on me.

  I make a mental note to swear as much as possible tomorrow, just to get on his nerves.

  ***

  Liam McCoy is staring down my blouse. The fucker isn’t even trying to be inconspicuous either - he wants me to know he’s looking down my blouse. Yeah, the girls are out there, and no matter what blouse I end up wearing and no matter how much tailoring I do the girls demand to be shown off, and there’s nothing much I can do about that. I make even the most modest of shirts seem slutty.

  Fucking shit.

  Liam’s hot and all, especially in that snake way that is both charming and revolting. He’s got nothing on Liam Hemsworth though, even though that kid might look less hot in a suit then the jerk standing in front of me. Liam’s got shit-brown eyes, and has the fucking audacity to cock an eyebrow at me after he’s done taking his fill of my amazing tits.

  Dean wouldn’t do something like that. Dean would blush and stumble, and look away only to look helplessly back, then apologize not just for getting caught, but for doing it at all. He would have ten years ago, now, though, I’m not entirely sure.

  The big bastard should be at my place at any minute, running late as I am - in what kind of vehicle? I have no idea. All I need is for him to pull up in a Fast and the Furious style Honda with neon lighting on the dash and die of embarrassment. Or worse, he’s probably geekified his car in ostentatious ways that’ll make me sit real low in the passenger seat.

  “How about that drink, Katie? You keep telling me no, and I’m going to think you don’t like me after all,” Liam says, grinning at his own cleverness. Don’t make me puke, Liam.

  “Can’t, McCoy. I’ve got a lot of work to do. I’ll see you tomorrow, though,” I say, pulling on my Burberry trench coat, and tightening the belt. The way Liam’s eyes light up at that has me wondering what kind of shit he’s into. Answer: never going to know ‘cause I ain’t going near that.

  I grab my purse and head for the elevators with Liam behind me. I don’t know what makes men think that receiving flowers without permission to do so is going to make me spread my legs with a snap of his fingers.

  Fuck that.

  We wait in awkward silence while Liam devours my completely clothed body in what I’m sure he thinks is a sexy way. The elevator doors ding open and I walk in, taking my stance in the middle of the elevator car, blocking his way in. Liam walks backwards, palms up in a non-threatening gesture when all I really wanna do is kick him in the ‘nads for even trying to intimidate me.

  I don’t wave goodbye when the doors close, but instead choose to look right through him like he doesn’t exist. Ignoring him seems to work better.

  When I exit, I swipe my card to get into the lobby, then walk outside, tilting my head from right to left, cracking my neck. Ah, relief. I palm the nape of my neck and massage the sore muscles there, while using my other hand to fish in my purse for my keys.

  “DiNovro!” Fucking Liam. I gave him the I-wanna-fuck-you look when I was ovulating last month, and he thinks it’s been game on ever since. Men.

  I continue moving towards my car, getting my doors unlocked. Roxie beckons like a homing beacon and I move a little faster. There are only four cars in the lot, and mine is the most conspicuous. I love her with all my heart.

  There’s a car next to mine that I don’t recognize by the license plate, but DesCorp is always hiring, and some newbie decided to take the spot next to mine. Whatever. If there are scratches on Roxie, though, there’s going to be hell to pay. At least it’s a Lexus and not some shitty Sentra or something.

  I screech when a huge body unfolds out of the car next to mine, and comes to stand in front of me. Even though daylight savings time is a couple of weeks off, the parking lot is dark enough that if someone wanted to hurt me, well, they wouldn’t find the body for a while.

  Fucking shit, how in hell do I get in these situations?

  The curse! Again!

  “What the fuck, Dean? Who said you could come lumbering out your car like that, scaring the shit out of me?” I hiss, appalled that my lower lip is trembling. I wasn’t that scared. I might just have peed myself, though. And only a little.

  Dean comes around his car, big strides eating up the space between us to come stand in front of me. Then he hugs me, crushes me to his chest where it’s all nice and warm and he smells like hot chocolate and his cologne and Dean and shit, shit, shit-

  “Is there a problem here, Katie?” Liam asks from behind us.

  Dean only lets me go when I push against him with enough force to throw a smaller man flat on his ass.

  “Bro,” Dean says, and my mouth drops open in shock. Bro? Bro?! “When a woman is walking away from you after you called after her, means she doesn’t want to be talking to you, alright?”

  Liam looks like he’s going to have a seizure. “What the fuck, man?”

  Dean pulls in a breath like he’s trying to explain a complex mathematical formula to a little kid and the conversation isn’t going so well. “You called out her name, and she didn’t turn around. What’s that signal for ya, man? What’s it mean? Means she couldn’t give a fuck about what you have to say, and the way she was practically sprinting to her car? Not a good sign.”

  What is happening?

  Liam looks utterly shocked. I kinda want to laugh. “Ease up there, big guy. I wasn’t doing anything wrong.” The guy makes a show of straightening his tie, and smoothing down the material of his sleeves. This whole time, I don’t think his hair has moved in the cool breeze.

  I watch Dean get into Liam’s space, and the height difference has my knees wobbling. Losing Dean’s heat from his solid chest is making me shiver and pissed off.

  “Yeah, but you were going to. And we both know it. No
means no, motherfucker. You even look at my girl in any other way that makes her feel less like a goddess, I’m going to come up to that glass cage you call an office and give you the beating of your life. You get me?” Dean’s voice hardly carries in the dark lot, and that’s what makes it even scarier. He’s got a dangerous mode and I don’t know where the on/off switch is.

  My God, he’s beautiful. The crappy orange streetlight makes him look more dangerous, the shadows carved into his features make him look deadly, and the sheer size of his body make him a threat you don’t want to mess with.

  I really need to fuck him tonight. I really, really do.

  I don’t see Liam scurry away back into our building, and I don’t really hear what he mumbles as he’s doing that. Nah, I’m completely mesmerised by Dean and what he just did for me, and by what he said.

  I don’t think that Liam was going to do anything, but you never know. And no matter what, I’m not changing jobs because of one fucker.

  “Thanks, Dean,” I whisper, stuffing my hands in my pockets.

  He doesn’t look at me, but stares at the glass doors I guess Liam just disappeared into. He stares for almost a minute then finally looks at me, shivering in the dark. My car beeps its locks closed and I jump at the sound. Yup, nerves of steel over here.

  Dean suddenly puts his palms above his knees and bends at the waist, the same kind of position you would do if you were about to pass out.

  “Whoah, head rush, head rush, head rush,” he sing-songs, and I lean down to get a look at his face. I swipe some of his hair behind his ear, and watch him flick his face to the side and give me a reassuring smile, like this happens all the time.

  He straightens up, a mega-watt smile on his face, cheek muscles totally contracting. “Holy shit, I didn’t think I had that in me. Did you see me? I thought that little shit wasn’t going to back down. But he did. Did you see my skills? Without throwing a punch, too. Pat on the back, Carter, pat on the back.” He actually pats himself on the back.

  I fake-yawn while trying to keep an unimpressed face. He’s a little kid stuck in a hot, hot, hot body.

 
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