Home > On a Tuesday (One Week #1)(8)

On a Tuesday (One Week #1)(8)
Author: Whitney G.

—Kyle.

SUBJECT: RE: RE: RE: Re: Next Time You Jackasses Throw an ‘Unofficial’ Bonfire ...

Right. Fucking. NOW.

—Coach Whitten

I LAUGHED AS I READ over this morning’s emails, now glad I’d spent half of my weekend studying last season’s game footage instead of co-hosting the bonfire with Kyle. The other half was spent searching for whatever I could find about my sexy, smart-mouthed tutor.

I was hoping to find something new by today, our second Tuesday, but my search was futile. I’d only found her private Facebook page, which featured an “I Love Pitt” picture instead of her face, and a few art reviews she’d written when she was a staff writer for The Pitt News. Other than the fact that she was listed as a fellow honors student in the directory, there wasn’t much else I found about her.

I hated to admit it, but during the entire fifteen minutes that we'd talked last week, I couldn't help but stare. My advisor's "Charlotte Taylor is a complete sweetheart," description hadn't prepared me for the hazel-eyed vixen I encountered that day. Her coffee colored hair, bright pink lips, and the way her dress clung to her hips were now playing in a never-ending loop in my mind.

In all my years here, I couldn’t believe we’d never crossed paths. I was more than certain that I would’ve remembered seeing her—even if it was only for a few seconds. In fact, I’m sure I would’ve approached her the second I saw her. Then again, something told me that saying, “I think you’re sexy as fuck” wouldn’t have earned me anything from her but more sarcasm.

When I arrived at Highland Café for our second session, Charlotte was sitting at a table in the back, her head buried in a book. Just like last week, she had a stack of colorful folders and notebooks set in the center of the table, and I was willing to bet that she had some type of OCD about needing to have twenty different types of pens and pencils.

“You’re late, again,” she said, when I approached the table. “How shocking.”

“If I had your phone number, I would’ve been able to tell you that my afternoon fitness session was running late.”

She looked up at me, her hazel eyes showing me she was unconvinced. “You have my email address. You could’ve sent me a message.”

“Fair enough.” I took a seat across from her. “I’ll keep that in mind for next time. What do you want to start with today?”

“The Bach pieces.” She furrowed her brow. “Wait a minute. Where is your notebook?”

“At home.” I pulled one of hers from the stack. “I figured you would have enough for me to borrow one.”

“I’m going to charge you for that.”

“I’m sure I can afford it.” I smiled. “My advisor mentioned that you’re a pre-law and art major, but you strike me as the teacher-type. Your smart-ass mouth and hostility aside, you seem like you might be good at it.”

“Did you bring anything?” Her eyes widened, as I picked up one of her pens, and she looked like this was some type of life or death matter. “Where are your literature books? The ones we discussed you getting last week?”

“I haven’t had the time to buy them yet.”

“We’re two whole weeks into the semester. Are you planning to buy them after finals?”

“Okay, I take back what I just said about you being a teacher. You clearly don’t know how to construct a compelling metaphor.”

“Grayson Connors.”

“You can call me Grayson.”

“Grayson Connors,” she said my name even harsher and pressed her red coated lips together, turning me on even more. “Let’s get a few things straight. Since you clearly have a love for numbering things, let me help you out. One, you need me more than I need you. Way more than I need you.”

I smiled.

“Two, if I’m expected to be a professional tutor, I’m going to need you to treat me like one and take these sessions and everything that I put into them seriously.” She let out a breath and leaned back against her seat.

“Is there a third reason coming?” I asked. “There’s no point in making a list if there are only two things.”

“Yes, there is a third thing.” She narrowed her eyes at me. “You need to make sure you show up on time, or else I’m leaving after the ten-minute mark.”

“I’ll be early from now on,” I said. “But to make things even straighter between us, your credits for this are tied to how well you tutor me, so I’d say we need each other equally. That, and I’ll take you seriously once you agree to stop being overly hostile with me. You said that I haven’t done anything to you personally.”

“Besides being a domineering jerk with a huge ego,” she muttered.

“What did you say?”

“I said, fine,” She tapped her pencil against the table. “You’re right. I’ll stop treating you like an enemy.”

“So, we’re friends now?”

She ignored that question. “I take it you’ll be buying your books after the add-drop period?”

“Yes.”

“And you’re not going to write any essays until all the professors give you the updated syllabi, since they usually change something at the last minute?” She looked as if she couldn’t believe the words that were falling out of her mouth.

“Yes, to that question as well.”

“Okay, well ...” She shrugged. “Is there any reason why the two of us need to continue sitting here today?”

“I can think of quite a few things I’d like to discuss.”

“Are they related to your work?”

“They’re related to you.”

“Oh, okay.” She smiled. “Give me five seconds and we can definitely talk about that.” She picked up all her supplies and tossed them into her bag. Then she stood up and rushed out of the café and across the street.

Is this a rejection?

GRAYSON: THEN

Seven years ago

Pittsburgh

“WAIT A MINUTE.” I LOOKED over my shoulder at Kyle as we lifted weights the next morning. Coach gave you what as a punishment for the bonfire?”

“He said I have to attend three showings of The Vagina Monologues play—one for every woman I ‘disrespected’ at the bonfire, and I owe him twenty written apologies to all our neighbors.” He dropped his barbells to the floor. “He wants five miles from me every Sunday morning and three extra miles after every practice until the end of the season. He also said he doesn’t want to hear anything else about my partying after this weekend, which is quite perfect because that means I get to bring in my last college birthday exactly how I’ve always dreamed it.”

“Please don’t tell me anything about your plans,” I said. “One of us has to be able to truly play dumb when the cops come.”

“The cops won’t have any reason to come this time.” He laughed. “I’m having it on the North Shore Saturday night, so can I trust that you’ll be my designated driver and bring me and whoever’s willing back to our place?”

“Of course. I’ll come after I get done studying.”

“Figures.” He stepped closer to the mirror. “I really don’t understand why you think you need to make all A’s. We’re not in high school anymore.”

“Yet you still insist on acting like it.”

“Funny.” He laughed. “I’m just saying that they don’t print our grades on transcripts and since you’re definitely going to the league after graduation, it really doesn’t matter what grades you make.”

“Nothing is guaranteed,” I said, remembering the last words my dad said to me before he passed away.

“Nothing is guaranteed except for you being drafted into the NFL within the top five, and me being drafted within the top ten.”

I shook my head and knew Kyle more than understood what my father told me, but I couldn't argue with him on his prediction. Even if the two of us gave halfway decent performances this year, our performances from the past three seasons were warranting interest from the NFL teams and our names were mentioned in ESPN's "Best College Player" rankings every week.

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