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Hiding

Posted on Thu Jan 16th, 2014 @ 1:41am by Unawakened Jana Rotherbridge

Date: Feb. 17th, 2010
Time: 3:30 pm
Location Sergeant Calhoun High School, secondary gym, Dallas, Texas

Jana sighed as she watched Cole wander off. He’d pointed out that it would be several minutes before Gabe was ready, and he didn’t want to have to have their brother carry him out. She’d agreed that it was undignified, but warned him to take the pill where she could see him before disappearing beneath the bleachers.

It was a normal spot for her. No one bothered her, because it was dark and slightly dingy, and she didn’t have to deal with the drama that inevitably would erupt from her classmates. She just… didn’t have time for it.

She often wished she didn’t have to deal with it at all. She wished she was back in Cali, at their school there. Sure, there was drama there, too, but it was different. It had more to do with actual smack talk and not just ‘bless your heart’, which could mean literally anything.

The guys weren’t much better. The ones Cole’s age, like the ones surrounding him at the moment, were intimidated because of her age. But almost everyone else could be a problem. Gentlemen who wanted to ‘reform’ her, bad boys that wanted to ‘show her the ropes’ (and brag about it later), and timid men who wanted to approach, but never did. She wanted something different.

“Hello, love.”

Jana jumped and looked in the direction of the (admittedly hot) British accent. It was the wrestler from before. Simon.

She narrowed her eyes at him, leaning back against the wall once more. She was in a black hoodie over a loose blouse and blue jeans, boots with heels on them on her feet. She wore heels to intimidate, but even with them on, she grazed Simon’s chin at 6’2. Not that she intended to get close enough to test that estimate.

He ducked under a supporting beam as he came closer to her, putting on a charming smile. He didn’t seem bothered that she wasn’t welcoming him or even being friendly toward him on approach. Categorizing him would be difficult, not the least reason being that he was British. Maybe he deserved one all his own. Suicidal.

“You’re a hard woman to find,” he said, coming to rest within feet of her. At least two. “Then I saw the hair between the slats. I thought we could talk, being private enough.”

The accent was definitely affecting her nerves. And not in a bad way, which was bad in and of itself. She didn’t want him. She didn’t.

But she had to admit, he cut an impressive figure. Black wool coat, Oxford shirt, designer jeans and sneakers big enough for both of Cole’s feet to fit in just one. It was the first time she’d ever felt even vaguely intimidated by any guy since coming to Texas. She wasn’t sure how to feel about that.

Jana tossed some hair over hers shoulder. “Talk about what?” she asked, not being encouraging.

Simon shrugged. “Get to know you, find out more than the gossip tells. I want to find out what kind of person you are.”

‘Beating around the bush’ wasn’t an approach she usually got from guys, but Simon appeared to be following that play.

“Guys don’t usually try to ‘get to know’ me, “she said, her hands in her pockets. “Most guys usually want something from me when they talk to me.”

“Is that right?” he asked, his tone idle.

Jana gave a short nod. “Yeah.” she said. “So why don’t you get to the point?” Aunt Mariah would despair at her lack of manners.

To her surprised, the smile didn’t leave his face. In fact, Simon’s smile appeared to broaden. “Very good. You are unlike any other girl in the school. You don’t simper, wheedle or whine. You work to remain unattached. And you suffer no fools,” he said, motioning as if to use her response to him as an example. “As it happens, that’s precisely what I need.”

Jana raised her eyebrows. He definitely deserved his own category.

“What I want is nothing serious. I don’t want a relationship. I’m not asking to take you to the Prom or anything. What I want,” he said, moving a little closer, “is a stress relief. I’ll be leaving for college in a few short months.” He looked her in the eye. “I want sex. No strings.”

Jana blinked. Okay, that was definitely new. “Repeat that?” she asked, her voice faltering. She cleared her throat, but didn’t repeat *herself*.

Simon smiled again. “You heard me,” he said softly. “I want you. Very close to my own height. Long, silky hair that I ache to wrap around my hand. Delightful figure that your choice of clothing does nothing to hide. I want to memorize every curve and watch your eyes light up for me. You’re gorgeous, Jana. And men are fools for the things they want.”

Jana cleared her throat, shifting on her feet. She could almost feel his hands while he spoke. Definitely not a feeling she’d consider G-rated. “Is that right?” she said, trying to act as idle as he had. Her tone came out all wrong.

Simon nodded, coming closer. She wanted to back away, but she didn’t want him to know he’d unnerved her. Though he had, and anyone watching the interaction would know it. She looked around, but Cole hadn’t moved and didn’t seem to know anything was happening. Her attention was brought back to her situation when Simon picked up a lock of hair and started to wrap it around his index and middle fingers.

She swallowed. “Stop that.”

He did. There was nothing in his stance that was restraining her, but she still couldn’t move. “What do you say, Jana, love?”

She had the craziest urge to press against him, say yes. She could feel the heat of his body over the… six inches left between them. Instead, she reached out and pushed at him. “No. No, I won’t do that.”

She cursed her voice for shaking.

His smile never faded. “We’ll see,” he said, pulling away and walking back the way he’d come, at the far end of the bleachers. Jana took a deep breath as soon as he was out of earshot. She pulled at her hoodie, desperately trying to cool down.

What was he thinking?

She didn’t know, but she didn’t have time to ponder. Cole was motioning, and she saw that Gabe was there, waiting for her. She moved out from under the bleachers, made sure Cole swallowed his pill, then followed them out, hoping neither of them noticed anything was up with her.

When they were in the limo, and Cole was tucked up against her, sleeping, she finally noticed something was different. “Gabe?” she said, addressing the brother leaning against her shoulder.

“Hmm?” he asked.

“What’s that smell? It’s not your usual scent.”

“Oh.” She heard him clear his throat “Gary had a sample and he was spraying it everywhere. Smells good, doesn’t it?”

She could almost feel something was up with that explanation, but she let it go. “Yeah,” she said. “Smells good.”

She couldn’t help but remember who *else* smelled good.

Simon.

“You okay,” Gabe gave his sister an affectionate squeeze. “You feel really tense.”

“I’m fine,” she said, running her fingers through Cole’s hair. “Just have a test this week.”

“Don’t remind me…” Gabe groaned pitiably. “Science is kicking my butt. Mr. Ellison assigned me a tutor. How lame is that.” he sighed.

Jana smirked. “Sounds like you’re a jock…”

He tickled her in mock affront, “Hey!”

Jana giggled. “Stop! You’ll wake Cole!”

Gabe relented, kissing his sister’s hair. “Love ya.”

She squeezed his hand. “Love you, too.”

 

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