My Guardian Angel Is A Cockblocker – 4
My Guardian Angel Is A Cockblocker – Part 4
The Campus Grind was busy–especially for a Thursday night mid-semester, but just as they arrived, a couple vacated a prime table in the back of the café. Grinning like they’d won the lottery, the pair quickly claimed the prize.
“What would you like?” Alex asked before either of them sat.
Austin shook his head. “No, let me get this.”
“Nah, I asked you to come with me.”
“But I called you first.”
Alex nearly laughed. First time anyone ever fought to buy him a drink. “How about you get the next time?”
“Next time?” Austin’s smile grew. “So, if I let you pay today, you’re agreeing to a second date?”
Of course he wanted a second – and more – date. He tried to act less excited than he felt. “Sure, if you’re asking.”
“I’ll hold you to that.” Austin chose the seat that allowed him to see the counter. “I just want black coffee.”
Alex almost called Austin a ‘cheap date,’ but figured that wouldn’t be his best line. “One black coffee, coming up.”
He resisted the urge to look back as he walked, but he turned toward their table several times while in line. Each time he found a smiling Austin staring his way.
After Alex collected their drinks, he headed back. Each step closer seemed to make Austin’s smile grow. All the things Alex thought to say or ask while in line evaporated as he soon as he reached the table. “Two black coffees.”
“Thanks.” Austin accepted one of the cups. “Hannah says you’re from around here?”
“Yeah, kinda. I grew up outside of Philly.” Alex wished he’d called Hannah back to find out what she and Austin had talked about. “How about you?”
“San Diego.” He sounded almost apologetic. “People back home think I’m weird going a small school no one heard of on the east coast, but I wanted to be on my own.”
Alex could only dream about that kind of freedom. Even as an adult, he knew he’d be monitored. “I totally get it. I had to push hard just to get far enough away to live on campus.”
“What?” Austin’s smile returned. “Are you some kinda bad boy that your parents need to keep an eye on?”
Alex nearly choked on the drink he’d just taken and then floundered trying to come up with a witty comeback. “Yeah, something like that.”
“Oh good.” Austin pretended to make sure no one was listening. “I like that.”
Between turning red and thinking of a response, Alex wondered how he’d been so mistaken. He’d always thought Austin was the quite, reserved type–in fact that was part of the attraction. Unfortunately, Alex knew he wasn’t what he’d just suggested.
“Actually, they didn’t think I was ready to go away. If…I don’t think they’d have let me go if Nicholas hadn’t been coming here as well.”
“Are they like paying him to watch you or something?” Austin’s laugh didn’t settle Alex as they strayed too close to the truth.
He knew he was a terrible liar, something his parents, Nicholas, even Hannah had said many times, so he kept it simple. “Nah, they felt if I went with someone, I’d settle in better. I really didn’t need it, but it was cool having a friend when I got here.”
“I came here because I didn’t know anyone. I wanted a blank slate.” Austin shrugged. “You know, start over, be who I wanted, not who others thought I was, make new friends without someone talking about me first.”
A snort escaped Alex’s lips before he could stop it. “And yet you talked to Hannah about me before you called.”
“Yeah, well.” Austin’s bravado waned. “I wanted to be sure you were interested.”
Alex felt his heart pound harder. He might not have drooled over Austin like Hannah suggested, but he certainly had a lot of interest. “You mean you missed me checking you out every chance I got?”
When Austin looked up, Alex felt like his face was on fire. Of all the stupid things to say.
“Pretty much missed that I guess.” Austin ran his finger around the white plastic lid before he tore his gaze off the cup and made eye contact. “Every time you looked at me I turned away so you wouldn’t know I was checking you out.”
“What a fascinating mating ritual young people today have turned dating into.” Nicholas’ voice nearly caused Alex to turn to search for him. He managed to stop himself before he did, but it drew attention.
Austin’s eyes narrowed and Alex could see the question on his lips. Before Alex could say something he felt his guardian’s presence coming closer.
Raw anger swept away Alex’s good mood. His face twisted with the rage he felt building inside. Luckily, Austin’s gaze was fixed on the door or he might have thought Alex was reacting to his statement.
“I think your roommate followed us.” Austin’s lips twisted into a scowl.
He repressed–barely–the urge to mentally scream at Nicholas. After his slip up earlier, Alex couldn’t tick off his guardian angel again this soon. That, however, only added to his anger.
Alex spun around and watched Nicholas pretend to be interested in getting a drink–he didn’t even like coffee. And why could people see him? Nicholas could easily have made himself invisible. The urge to ignore the angel almost won the day, but a thought broke through his fury; Nicholas wanted to be seen. That meant it was important.
“Give me a minute.” Alex stood up without turning back.
As he moved closer, Alex convinced himself that whatever Nicholas had to say probably wasn’t important, but the angel would act like it couldn’t wait.
“Why are you here?” His words, though whispered, came out in a hiss.
Nicholas smiled as if Alex’s greeted him warmly. “The presence of a helcor* has been confirmed nearby.”
* Helcor = enemy of the Keslin/Angel/Humans
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