I’m so late! “Excuse me!” Dodging the school janitor, what’s-his-name, I quickly made my way through the waving hallways of Jacksonville High School. Despite my heart beating in my ears, the last minute bell rang, signaling the start of class.
Running down the hallway in flat shoes was no easy task. I nearly tripped several times already. What’s more, the principal, Mr. Sampson, yelled at me as I ran past him. In my haste, o’course I couldn’t make out what he said. My guess was that he was telling me to slow down, but I couldn’t. I was late.
With my literature class in sight, a wave of relief flowed through me. Maybe just maybe I can make it before the teacher comes in.
I reached the door several minutes later. Stopping, I took a moment to compose myself. My hair was good and my clothes straight. I inhaled a deep breath before grabbing the door knob.
My first day back and I’m late. How could I let Mr. Walker, my rather talkative neighbor, hold me up. Sure I parked my car in his spot, but the man was barely home. Not to mention the fact that he took the bus wherever he went.
Focus. I gotta stay foc-
The first thing to greet me upon opening the door was at least twenty pairs of eyes. Frowning, I averted my gaze and entered all the way.
“Good of you to join us, Miss-” said a masculine voice.
Pausing as if I was caught doing something wrong, I sighed to myself. Great, the teacher. Making my way toward my seat, I heard Sarah Goodwin, a teacher’s pet, introduce me. That girl was destined to be class president of the year.
“Miss. O’Connell then,” came the teacher. His voice sounded silvery like a breeze on a warm day. A sliver went up my spine.
Taking my seat near the middle, I found myself staring into the most greenish eyes I’ve ever seen. “You’re not Mr. Yogi.” The words spilled from my mouth before I could stop them.
A warm smile graced his perfect lips. “No, I’m not. My name is Mr. Lucian Knight and I will be your literature teacher this year, Miss. O’Connell.”
God, why does my name sound like a purr coming from his pretty mouth?
He was at least six feet tall. Maybe taller.. Muscular but not buff. He had on a plaid blue shirt and black dress pants. He had that ruffled hair look, but somehow he pulled it off. He was oh so handsome.
And he was coming my way!
“Did you hear me, Miss. O’Connell?” He stopped beside my desk. A knowing look was in his eyes.
“Huh, what?” I blinked my eyes several times. Snickers from a few students followed my amazing statement. “Sorry.”
He smiled widened. “A week’s detention for being late to my class. I expect to see you here after school.” He turned and moved back toward the front of the room.
“Now that everyone is accounted for, let’s begin.” He turned to face the class, a toothy smile on his face.
Great. Just great.
An hour and fifteen minutes brushed past easily as moving water. The bell rang signaling the end of class. I began to gather up my notes and things. Looking up toward the front, I noticed the crooked line of young teenage girls standing around Mr. Knight.
Renee Thurston, my archenemy, stood out to me. With her big boobs and butt, she was every guy’s wet dream. As she stood talking to Mr. Knight, she twirled a lock of her black curls around her finger.
Could she be any more obvious?
Flirting with the teacher was one thing, but flirting with him was another. A low growl escape from me that had me jumping in my seat. I looked around me quickly. No one seemed to have heard that. Sliding my gaze back to the front, I’m met with piercing green eyes looking back.
I swallowed hard. Was he really just looking at me? No, he was not.
Just as Renee and her girls headed toward the door, they all said their goodbyes to Mr. Knight. I was next to the last person to leave the room. Picking up my things. I headed toward the door.
“Miss. O’Connell,” Mr. Knight’s voice has me pausing in place.
“Yes?” I slowly turned around to face him. “Mr. Knight?”
A chuckle left his mouth and a thrill of excitement ran through me. What was this feeling? Surely not complete excitement. Happiness maybe?
He took a few steps between us. Once he was standing in front of me, I looked up into his face.
“It’ll benefit you if you don’t be late to my class.” He shoved his right hand into his pants pocket.
I looked down at the floor to keep from getting lost in his eyes. “I’m sorry. It won’t happen again.”
“Good because I’ll hate for one of the A students to keep getting in trouble in her last year.”
I looked up at him. The warm that came to my cheeks had me brushing a lock of dark brown, curly hair behind my ear. Did the other girls feel this way when talking to him? Was he always this cool and collected?
“You better be off now, Miss. Amelia. Wouldn’t want to keep you from your next class.” He flashed a closed lip smile before backing away from me.
A cold breeze settled between us, but the moment was lost as I realized I might be late to another class. “Right, yeah. I gotta go.” Turning, I headed toward the door. Pausing at the door, I cast one more look in his direction.
He really is handsome.
“Did you see the new hottie?” Clara Duncan leaned back against the black lockers beside mine. “I bet he’s in his twenties.”
“Who?” Rammering through my books, I pretended to be busy with gathering my things.
A gasp left her lips. “Amelia B. O’Connell-”
“Clara S. Duncan.” Despite her being my best friend and the only Caucasian albino I’ve ever seen, she was way too focused on boys. She was the reason I took notice of the guys, who admired me, in the first place. Not that any really interested me.
She turned her body toward me. Her violet eyes narrowed. “You know very well who I’m talking about.”
I did. “I don’t. Honestly.” Closing my locker, I turned to her, an eyebrow arched.
She blinked several times. “Mr. Knight. The new teacher. The hottie that’s every girl’s fascination.”
I stared at her. Every girls’ fascination? Oh man, why did that annoy me? “Oh you mean the guy who gave me detention for a week on the first day back.”
“You got detention?” That signature smile made its way on Clara’s face.
I could smack her sometimes.
“Yeah, I did.” I glared at her. I can’t believe she is finding this funny.
Laughing, she grabbed her stomach, bending over. I glared even harder, trying to burn a hole in her long, straight hair.
Her snickering slowed up. “I’m sorry,” she said between laughter. “But you don’t get detention often and you got it on the first day. Too funny.”
“It was all Mr. Walker’s fault.” I turned with a sigh and began walking.
“Still complaining about that spot huh?” She fell into steps beside me.
“He doesn’t even have a car, ugh,” I said as I glared ahead.
We walked and chatted about how ridiculous Mr. Walker was before we came to my destination. I groaned upon sight of the classroom. I can’t believe I got detention. My mom was so going to be in my face about this.
“It’s not that bad,” Clara said as she leaned the top half of her body over, looking inside the room. “At least you have some eye candy to look at.”
Looking at Clara, I smiled. “I suppose you’re right. He is cute...in that older guy kind of way.”
“You’re crazy and I’m going to go to cheerleader practice.” She pointed her right hand thumb over her shoulder.
“Fine leave me to suffer while you go hang out with your fake friends.” I frowned.
It’s not like I was jealous of Clara’s ‘fake’ friends. It’s just I didn’t particularly like the cheerleader squad leader. There was something about her that rubbed me the wrong way. Not to mention her otherworldly looks.
“Bye Babe,” Clara called over her shoulder as she walked away.
I blew out a breath of air.
Well I might as well hop to it.
Turning, I looked at the door. My heart pounded in my chest the closer I got to the door. Upon entering, the first sight I see is Mr. Lucian Knight. He’s sitting at his desk, working on whatever it is that teachers did after classes.
I walked up to a desk in the middle. Taking my seat, I looked up to see his leave green eyes looking at me. I averted my gaze.
“On time to detention. Very good Miss. Amelia.” Mr. Knight’s voice held a notch of amusement in it.
I said nothing in response to that. I mean it wasn’t like I could mouth off at my teacher. That would get me more detention. Which I didn’t want.
Pulling out my book, I pretended to study. Anything to not look in his direction. Which was hard to do because I swear I could feel his eyes on me.
After a while, I heard the rattling of paper being moved. Glancing toward the front, I see that Mr. Knight is busy working away. I would have thought he made the noise on purpose if he haven’t been working like he was.
He really was handsome. I wondered if he had a girlfriend. Again the ugly head of jealousy filled me. This time in the form of an image of a black wolf that glared from my mind’s eye.
What if he did have a girlfriend? Or worse: married. It’s not like he was my age. He was a grown man. We couldn’t date anyway. He was my teacher after all. Wasn’t there some forbidden rule about teacher student relationships?
I startled at the voice that was close to me. Looking up, I see Mr. Knight standing beside my desk, smiling down at me. An embarrassed blush creeped onto my cheeks. How did he get over here without me realizing? “Huh, yeah, sorry.”
He arched an eyebrow. “I was saying your time is up. You’re free to go.”
“Oh.” I scramble to get my things. Rising from my seat, I shoved my book into my bag.
“I’m curious,” said Mr. Knight while he folded one arm under the other. “Why were you late this morning?”
“My neighbor,” Sighing, I slang my bag over my shoulder.
“What does your neighbor have to do with you being late?” He gave a quizzed look.
“He stopped me this morning over a parking spot that he doesn’t use.” I quickly explained. Thinking back to the whole thing, I could see the silliness in the situation.
“I see. In any case, try to be on time to class.” He smiled a beautiful smile once more. “I’ll hate for you to miss out on the beginning of my classes.”
“Got ya,” I averted my gaze and turned to leave.
“See you tomorrow, Miss. Amelia,” he said in a low voice.
That sended a pleasant shiver up my spine and my heart into the pit of my stomach. I forced myself to continue onward. Soon I was out the door. Speed walking down the hall, I mumbled to myself.
Lost in my self talk, I found myself bumping right into Dean Foreman, a star football player and my crush. Looking up into his face, I tried to piece together what had happened. “Oh sorry.”
“No problem,” he said, then turned to leave, but paused. “Amelia, right?”
“Yeah,” I said, wondering why I wasn’t feeling those butterflies in my gut.
“Nice. Later.” He waved and turned, walking away.
I groaned out loud. I had just talked to Dean Foreman and I didn’t have the familiar butterflies and longing that came whenever I was near him.
That was strange.
An image of Mr. Lucian Knight flashed through my mind. A blush warmed my cheeks. I shook the image away.
“I must be going crazy.”