The Angel,The Devil,The Nerd

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Chapter 5 - Give it a try

A/N: wooo...finally,after months (last time was November),I get to update this story too! :D I'm excited,aren't you? I'll pretend you are :P I'm excited also because I've finally been able to come up with a real storyline for this and while I miss some chapters in between,I already have what's much ahead...hehe :D

RECAP (in case you've forgotten the story after so many months):

Natalie is stuck working with both Kyle (her crush,the ones she calls Angel) and Eric (the one she calls Devil)  for a school project. The hottest boys in schools,who...accidentally,well,not really, because there is a precise reason,loathe each other and can't even stand a moment in each other's presence without ending up fighting,which is why Natalie is to work separately with each of them. First day,she worked with Eric and it was awkward. Now the second day...it's Kyle...

ENJOY! ;) and please,leave a feedback (:

CHAPTER 5 - GIVE IT A TRY

Nervous wouldn’t describe my situation. I was more than nervous. I was panicking. It was exactly five o’clock and I was in front of Kyle’s car, fidgeting, didn’t even dare to lean on it. He’d be here in a minute and then we’d face a whole 20 minutes drive to the library. All alone. Me and Kyle alone. Once at destination we won’t be alone because in one way or another there’s always somebody in the library, be it only the librarian himself, but till there … the ride with Eric yesterday wasn’t that awkward because I just let my mind wander alone and it’s not like Eric is such a chatter, so didn’t even try to make conversation.

Speak of the devil … literally, because as I looked up from my phone to check if Kyle was coming, instead I saw Eric coming out of the school. He was wearing simple dark jeans with a grey pullover, hair, like always, disheveled. Am beginning to think he ruffles it because he likes it that way.

I couldn’t help but wonder what was he doing in school till late, I mean, our peers have left since two hours at least and for what I know he didn’t have detention, since it was Kyle’s turn, but hey, it’s none of my business if he runs a secret drug affair on the school’s property.

I lowered my glance when he, getting closer as he was heading towards his car, noticed me. To my relief, he didn’t glare like expected, but neither did he look too happy to see me. Guess he just doesn’t like me, which is odd, I mean, we’ve never had anything to do with each other, but then again, he hates everything and everybody, I’m just another target for his indiscriminate hatred. Although I do think I am on his black list.

I glanced back up when I heard the unlocking of a car and saw Eric opening the backseat door to throw his backpack inside. As he closed the door again, his eyes landed on me again. Trying to be polite, but also to try to get in his good graces, I shyly waved at him, cracking a smile, but he simply ignored me and, once he’d stepped on his car, just left.

I’m not sure if that’s good news for me. Does that mean I’m not even on his radar so I’m safe or he just hates me and my death sentence will soon be executed?

As I was creating dark scenarios of Eric finding the cruelest way to end me, the worst of which, believe it or not, would be tying me up in front of a steamy pizza without letting me take not even a bite and actually making me starve to death, finally I heard that lovely voice: "Hey, Nat. Sorry, I’m late." Kyle told me with a smile, to which I responded with an awkward attempt at smiling back. Obviously failed. So I just fell back on shaking my head to say that it wasn’t important.

He came closer and opened the passenger door for me, gently telling me to step in, so I did and he mimicked me on the driver seat. We left.

Silence filled the car for a few minutes, then Kyle turned on the music. To my displeasure, One Direction were on. I couldn’t help but grimace, hoping he’d change station, and in fact he grumbled too, muttering about how he hated that kind of music. I couldn’t help but smile. At least we have something in common.

Now the song blasting was nice even if I didn’t know it, but I wanted to say something, anything, just to talk to him, but nothing came to my mind. Nothing. Absolute zero.

"So, Nat, how’s it school going?" Kyle asked me as he turned left, I guess feeling the awkward silence just as I did. "Fine. Just have some problems with Math. You?" I replied, amazed at my own ability to say to him a complete sentence without stuttering. "Fine, but I’m pretty bad at Math too." He confessed with a cute smile. "I was hoping you could give me a hand … but we’re in the same boat apparently." I chuckled at that, unable to retain myself. "I’m sure you’re better than me." I commented and this time he chuckled, showing me his pearly white teeth.

"Not really, I barely get a C- …" He complained.  "Well, I barely get a D, so yeah, you’re better than me." I shot back,really amazed at my own speaking abilities now. He smiled. "Maybe we could help each other." He proposed.

I glanced at him, confused, as he was focused on the road. "If we’re both bad, I don’t see how." I argued, mentally slapping myself just as I finished the sentence because, I mean, can I be more stupid? He just proposed to see me more! Yeah, it’s for Math, but still …

Kyle chuckled. "Well, you know, among oxen … not that I’m saying you’re as dumb as an ox, I mean, I am when it comes to Math, but you … ok, I’m making a mess, aren’t I?" I laughed at his cute gaffe. He’s adorable. Really.

"It’s ok, I didn’t feel offended." I mended. He smiled at me, making my heart do somersaults.

"Good. But I bet I look like a jerk to you now." He wondered, a cute frown etched on his handsome face. I shook my head, almost violently. "No, of course not."

He smiled sweetly, glancing at me for a moment, then going back to focusing on the road, but the smile lingered on his lips for a while. More than thirty seconds, to be precise. Yes, I counted. Call me a creep.

"So, tell me, how did it go with Eric yesterday?" Kyle asked me, turning to me just as I’d luckily turned to the window, so he didn’t notice I was staring at him … phew … the question was odd, though.

For hating Eric, he talks about him pretty often, at least to me. Should I think they’re really teaming up against me? Nah, Eric doesn’t seem the type to do things like that and my Kyle is too angel … yes, I said my Kyle. Sue me. A girl can dream, right? I know I’m not like the cheerleaders he normally dates, but … ok, my chances are less than zero, but … well, exploiting this time to get at least a bit closer to him can’t be wrong, can it?

"Good … I think." I replied, still confused. "I mean, we didn’t really talk … you know better than me how he is." I added, unsure. Kyle chuckled. "Odd. With girls he’s pretty talkative when he likes them." He commented and I frowned, gazing at him, confused. "Well, I guess it’s clear he doesn’t like me. Not as a girl or … anything." I affirmed, this time really sure of my words. But Kyle smirked. Oddly smirked, like hiding something … what, I don’t know, but I couldn’t delete the feeling he was hiding something. 

I think between him and Eric there’s much more than I could ever know, probably things nobody knows, because unlike all of us, Kyle isn’t scared of him, actually, like I perplexedly witnessed the other day, Kyle isn’t at all afraid of talking back at Eric, while even some teachers do not dare question his behavior.

That makes me think their relationship is more complicated than it seems. To an inattentive eye, mine included, they would look like just two opposite characters obviously colliding, but there must be something else. Something I can’t grasp. But then again, it’s not really my concern, is it?

"Are you sure he doesn’t like you?" Kyle asked me, which really took me off guard.

What the hell does that mean? Especially his tone … he sounded playful but also serious, like there was actually an underling to his words, which is absurd. Eric liking me. And, judging from Kyle’s tone, he meant in exactly that sense, which is even more impossible.

Please. Normally guys don’t notice me, don’t even see me, and now one like Eric would … one like Eric seeks only … let’s say high-leveled preys. Me, with my pounds overweight, my anonymity and invisibility, my being a little saint (at least that’s what I’ve been called), I couldn’t catch his eye even if I tried my best.

Not that I would like to be on his radar in that specific sense, I mean, if anything, I’d like to be on Kyle’s radar in that sense.

I’ve never even seen Eric with a real girlfriend, have seen him flirting, better said, flattering girls now and then, those girls that, like I said, have the guts to come up to him and flirt. And those girls are always the top model kind … well, duh, of course they are, I mean, they’re normally cheerleaders and if not, they’re on the popular side of the high school social life, while me, I’m the loser, as Dana has gently been calling me since forever.

So, one like Eric Rivers, there’s nothing he could ever see in me. Especially because, that’s known, like … really known, all school and even the girls that flirt with him know it, he doesn’t seek a relationship, he doesn’t do relationships at all. Only one-night-stands.

"Uh … I’m … pretty sure Eric hates me. If he evens considers me." I replied, puzzled.

It’s insane to even think Eric Rivers would even spare me a glance, imagine looking at me that way! Yesterday he looked only bored while we were together, and every time we get face to face he seems to want to stab me, so …

Kyle cracked a smile, pressing his lips, like wanting to retain himself from saying something he shouldn’t. Well, talk about suspicious behavior!

"If that’s what you think …" He commented lowly, then finally parked, and his smile became full, making me forget all about his odd manners, and feel butterflies flutter in my stomach, like they always do when it’s about him. Oh, I’m pretty sure I’m smitten. But then, who wouldn’t be? He’s like … cuteness personified. 

One thing one could notice is that, while Kyle is the adorable kind of handsome, Eric is the hot, sexy, ragged one. Maybe together they’d make the perfect man. Oh, wait, but why the hell am I thinking of Eric now? He’s never been in my thoughts so often and for God’s sakes, I’ve got my crush right here beside me and I think of someone that maybe would gladly murder me in the most wicked way possible?! What the hell is wrong with me?!

Kyle stepped off the car and I followed him absentmindedly, giving myself a pep talk about how this afternoon needs to be enjoyable for both, so … no spacing out, Natalie. No spacing out.

We reached the library in silence, did everything in silence, till we reached our desk and sat across each other. I pulled out Eric’s notebook, which I’ll have to give him back tomorrow, after I’ll have copied everything, and couldn’t help but notice that Kyle looked surprised as I opened it, in particular, he gazed at the initials on the cover, neatly written: E. R.

"It’s Eric’s notebook." I pointed out, flipping through pages as I could feel his scrutinizing gaze on me. "I … we used this yesterday to write." I continued, since the silence between us was getting really awkward. Kyle nodded distractedly, still gazing at those two letters written in an actually pretty fine and nice calligraphy, at least till I started talking about the tale and what Eric and I had been able to put together during those few hours yesterday, and only then Kyle seemed to get back to himself.

Did I say the thing between him and Eric wasn’t my concern? Forget it. I’m intrigued. They hate each other’s guts for some reason nobody knows. People just know they steer accurately clear of each other’s path because otherwise they’d end up fighting. But what is it? Why do they hate each other this much?

Maybe I could take advantage of this project to go a little Sherlock Homes on them and … oh, wait, that’s insane, I can barely speak a known language to them, imagine actually inquire on their loathe for each other. Kyle might be easier to talk to, despite my feelings, I mean, since we’ve started talking, he’s always been nice, which is in his nature, but Eric … all he ever does when we’re face to face is glare, growl, grunt and … well, you get it, don’t you?

I don’t see what I’ve done to him to have him always give me that murderous look of his, which is, I’ve gotta admit, quite sexy for some aspects, but overall scary. Then again, he’s like that with everyone, so I guess I’m just part of that whole world he loathes.

But … Natalie, you’ve got your crush right in front of you. Time to stop thinking of the bad boy. Yes, inner self, you are absolutely right. Time to focus on my marvelous Kyle Romano and how cutes he looks with his concentrated countenance as he tries to come up with ideas …

Dreamy. That’s the simplest I can’t put it to describe him. Dreamy. A true angel. Opposite to the devil … the devil is a fallen angel too, though, which I guess is why he looks so appealing and tempting and hot and … oh, damn, Natalie. Focus on the angel. On – the – angel. Nothing good might ever come from losing yourself in thinking of Mr. Bad Boy.

For as handsome as he is, he’s trouble. Big, big trouble. Besides, he probably hates you and would very gladly tear you apart. Will you willingly hand in yourself to the darkness? Enter the lion’s lair, even worse, let the lion clutch your head in his deadly claws? That’d be stupid, to say the least.

But I don’t like Eric. Not … like that. I just … liked and never forgot that smile that lovely boy gave me our first day in 4th grade. Just that. He looked sweet and adorable. Then years passed and that lovely little boy disappeared in favor of this frightening bad boy. It’s sad actually, because something bad must have happened for him to change that much …

Shutting up good Samaritan Natalie that suggested to exploit this project to try and see if really Eric Rivers is just evil or he was made that and maybe help him go back to that lovely little boy, I focused on the one I should be ashamedly drooling over instead of thinking of the devil ...

Kyle smiled sweetly at me and I let him engorge me in his words, not losing a single one that came out of his mouth.

***

Halfway through our brainstorming, which was very much spent with me trying not to lose myself in his beautiful eyes and not blush when he talked to me or I talked to him, Kyle stood up, saying he needed to go grab a snack, asked if I wanted something, but right then my phone rang, so I just refused … sadly.

"Hola, mi amiga!" A beaming female voice greeted me once I took the call. I grinned. I’d recognize her everywhere, even if she was faking a Spanish accent. "Jamie!" I exclaimed, receiving a deadly glare from the librarian, so I silently apologized. My best friend laughed as I whispered that I couldn’t talk too loud because I was at the library. "Why am I not surprised?" She wondered. "That’s the perfect place for an egghead like you." She mocked.  "Always so kind, Jamie. Thank you." I responded, faking offense. "You’re welcome, chica. So, what’s up?"

I grinned as I thought of her reaction when I’d tell her … I looked around and Kyle was nowhere to be seen, so I guess he was still at the machines. I could see the librarian digging holes into my head as I kept my phone at my ear, so I stood up, giving myself time to leave a short note to Kyle about me being out to talk on the phone, before rushing out, the librarian’s curses echoing in my head even if they were silent. I wonder if he might be a sorcerer or something …

"What’s this rugged breath?" Jamie asked once I reached the door and stepped out. There was almost no one around, but I could spot Kyle by the machine, gazing at the various snacks, not too far from me.

"Natty-Slutty, you ain’t having sex while talking to me, are you?" Jamie mocked. I rolled my eyes, not even feeling offended. You can guess my best friend if a force of nature. One flaw I could find in her is her never thinking before talking …

"If I’d been doing what you say, I wouldn’t have even answered you, Miss." It’s a thing between us: when she gets rude with her nicknames, I do the pompous smartass so we look like two opposites. She chuckled. "Well, you’re 18, girl. It’s about time you get a move." She complained, like she always does, about me not having even ever kissed a boy. Says I’ll end up spinster or crazy cat lady or both if I don’t do something about it soon.

You can obviously guess how she’s been digging a hole in my head about having to approach Kyle when I told her about my crush on him.

"I have patience." I retorted, leaning my back on the wall right next to the door, because I wanted to lean on something, not because from there I could see that adorable boy raking a hand through his hair as he sighed and pressed some buttons on the machine, no … I am not a stalker, I just … enjoy watching him. Is that bad?

Yes, probably, maybe I need some psychiatric help … or just a day alone with him … which I’m currently enjoying and … I flinched when I heard a loud whistle in my ear.

"Jamie!" I hissed, knowing she did that on purpose. Having been my best friend for years, she knows I have this habit of spacing out pretty often, so she’s found her own way to bring me back to reality, which is as annoying as hell, but I was never able to make her stop. So she just giggled.

"Let me guess, daydreaming about your oh, so charming Kyle Romano, weren’t you?" I grinned as she said that, making it just in time to catch his eyes as he looked towards the door. My cheeks enflamed because he probably thought I was grinning at the sight of him, but he simply smiled … so lovely as only he does, making my heart melt.

"More like … enjoying the sight." I commented absentmindedly as I was still gazing at him, who was choosing some other snack from the machine. Jamie snorted. "You are such a freak, Watson." She accused. I chuckled. "It’s not what you think." I defended, knowing what she was assuming. She snorted.

"Tsk … I bet you’re on a bench, drooling over him as he trains in the courtyard." Ashamedly, she said that with reason, because back to when she was still here, I used to drag her to the soccer team’s trainings just to see him … yes, I know, I’m hopeless, especially since it’s been three years already. But hey, at least now I talk to him. That’s progress, isn’t it?

Anyhow, I chuckled as she said that. "Actually no, I’m waiting for him to come back." I pointed out. "Oh, you stalker! Even following him home!" She accused. I laughed. "You’re the evil one between us, let me remind you." I retorted and she grumbled some nonsense, like she always does, just to irritate me.

But I grinned as I saw Kyle walking back towards the door. Just had the time to hear Jamie flipping pages or something before he was right in front of me, smiling as he handed me a Mars bar. "Didn’t know what you preferred, so I just guessed." He told me and I smiled, trying not to blush, as I thanked him, tuning out Jamie asking who was I talking to.

I wrapped my hand around the phone as I spoke: "I’d left you a note, but since you’re here … I’ll be back in a minute." I assured, my heart practically dancing the cha-cha-cha in my chest. Kyle simply nodded and went back in.

"Who was that? Don’t tell me there was actually a fool hitting on your flabby ass." Jamie implied sarcastically. "Language." I chastised her, trying to sound like a severe teacher, like I always do when she speaks like that, but she simply snorted and repeated the question. I grinned, knowing her reaction already …

"Just try not to burst my eardrums when I tell you … it was Kyle." Not trusting her self control, I pulled the phone back and could hear her screaming in excitement, babbling things that stood between the lines of “finally” and “thank God” or something of the sort.

Once she quieted down, I explained all the thing about the project and made it just in time to pull the phone back again before she could make me deaf with her screams.

"O-M-TO THE G! I can’t believe it!" She exclaimed. "You lucky, skunk! In between the two hottest boys in school! Who did you bribe to get that?" I chuckled as she kept on babbling nonsense.

"First, me in between them, as you said, sounds very much dirty, Jamie, may I tell you." I commented once she quieted down, but she simply snorted. "Like your perverted mind wouldn’t like it …" She accused. I rolled my eyes. Ladies and gentleman, my oh, so fine best friend!

"I am still … V …" I mumbled, a bit ashamedly, to which she snorted and swore. "Well, it’s about time you change that. I mean, take the chance, for fuck’s sakes! Honestly, between the two, I’d pick Rivers. He’s hot as Hell, but of course you’ll choose the angel …"

I rolled my eyes, grimacing at her suggestion that I’d split myself between Kyle and Eric or … both. Truth to be told, Jamie has never made a secret of her finding Eric hot and I of course don’t blame her, I should be blind not to agree, I mean, I do think he’s handsome, just a tad … scary. For me at least.

"It’s just a project, Jay. It’s gonna be over in ten days more or less." I tried to argue. "Well, make them worth it!" She chastised instead, in her high-pitched tone that was only meant to annoy me, because she used it only in those cases.

"How?" I asked.  She grumbled about my being so clueless and things like that, till she stopped and, inhaling deeply, instructed me: "You’re with Kyle now, right?"

"Yep." I replied, propping the p, unable to keep the silly smile on my lips, which she felt I guess … "Stop smiling like an idiot and listen to me." I giggled, admitting I couldn’t … because only the thought of Kyle makes me feel like that, so … yes, yes, I know, I’m smitten. 

This crush has been haunting me since freshman year already and I don’t seem to be able to get rid of it. In my defense, talking about impossible crushes, my best friend did have her eye on the bad boy till she was here. Nothing big, just normal swooning, like pretty much all the girls in our school do, well, when he doesn’t growl and snarl and send them away, but she did like him.

"If I got it right, because of this project, you guys are gonna be alone for more than a few afternoons. Right? And don’t smile. Just say yes or no." Jamie ordered. Of course I grinned. "Yes, Ma’am." I mocked and could imagine her rolling her eyes.

"Well, it’s your damn chance to get close to him, so don’t fucking waste it. Do you hear me, Watson? Do not fucking waste this chance. It’s senior year, so this is your very last chance." She chastised.  I rolled my eyes, although knowing she was right. I have thought about it when the year started, you know.

That this one’s the last one and most probably I’ll never see Kyle again so either I grow some balls and give it a try or I regret it for the rest of my life … either way, it’s gonna end bad, that’s obvious. I mean, I know I’m not his type, I’m nobody’s type, but … well, I might as well just take a shot, right?

******************************

A/N: on the side....Jamie

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