SILENCE

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CHAPTER 7: TO BE OR NOT... TO BE?

The ride to her house was quiet as we maneuvered through the late-night traffic. Far too quiet. Her light tap on my shoulder stops me in front of the Havens apartments blocks and she gets off.

"Is this really where your parents live?" I ask, looking from her to the building.

"No," I look at her in confusion, "this is where I live."

"What?!" The surprise in my tone was evident as she stares back at me weirdly.

"I don't live with my parents. I live alone." Her tone was flat as she said the word parents.

"But... You're still in high school!" she continues to stare at me in that weird way with her head tilted to the side like a confused puppy, "What parent allows their sixteen-year-old daughter to live by herself! I don't care how much money you have." She continues to stare at me in silence.

"You really can be funny sometimes Sensei."

"I'm serious, Atlas." I could feel the frown in my brows, and from her amused expression so could she.

"I can tell and that's what I find amusing," she smiles, handing me my helmet, "I am not a child, Sensei. I moved out of my father's house on my own accord and with my own money. And I am most definitely not some little sixteen-year-old girl." With that, she turns, walking towards the entrance before stopping to look at me one last time, "if I were a child, I wouldn't have let you go that far, Yuzuki-San." She says it with a smile before disappearing through the sliding doors. Fuck! Putting the spare helmet away I jump off my bike and ran after her, catching up as she got into the elevator.

"Yuzuki! What the hell?!" Shock plastered across her face as well as the old lady stood next to her.

"Please explain all of this to me... Atlas."

"Your bike's going to get towed and you'll have to pay a fine, you know."

"It's fine. I live just down the street." At that, she looks at me as though reading my... oh, she is reading my facial expression. The doors open on the tenth floor and she takes my hand, walking me to the last door at the end of the hall.

"You are a pain in the ass Sensei."

"I'm a teacher, it can't be helped." I replied with a shrug. At this she rolls her eyes and I smirk inwardly.

"This is why you're annoying...” sighing she opens the door and motions for me to follow, "please come in before more of my neighbours see you."

"Will you get in trouble for having a man over?" She pauses while taking off her jacket to stare at me.

"No. I have men here all the time," my eyes widen with shock at her statement, "I just can't be bothered with any of them interrogating me."

"Them?" She leaves the question hanging as she moves further into the apartment. Following her in, my eyes opened wide in disbelief as I scanned the room. The decor was subtle yet modern with hints of vintage works everywhere and... Japanese? The kitchen and living space were connected making the floor extremely spacious and flowers lined a small dining table near what looked like... shoji doors. A few rows of stairs led to a hallway I guessed led to the bedrooms and a bathroom; four rooms to be exact. The wall between the hallway and the doors was shockingly covered in shelves of books from top to bottom and a ladder going all the way to the top. So that's what Owen meant huh.

"Would you like something to drink. I've got juice, water, tea and beer." At the mention of beer, I walk over to the fridge and peering over her shoulder.

"Why do you have beer?!"

"Why does anyone have beers in their fridge?” she arches her brow quizzically, “There's also sake in the cupboard." Annoyed for some reason, I grabbed a can of iced tea, sitting on the sofa opposite her.

"You," I said pointing the can at her, "talk."

"You know Sensei," looking at me she had an amused expression running across her face, "you're kind of cute when you try to be bossy," I huff at her statement and she smiles, "you should smile with your eyes more or you'll get wrinkles if you're always faking it." She runs a line across her forehead grinning at me from across the small table.

"Says you?" I reply sarcastically arching my brow and she smiles warmly.

"Indeed, Yuzuki Sensei. I live in a world of hypocrisy." She retorts, shrugging before leaning back into her chair.

"Well?"

"Ah, yes. I've been living alone for about a year and a half…” she pauses, a sly smirk playing along her lips, “I had a room-mate but I kicked him out after about 5 months." I could tell I was frowning. This little minx! I played right into her hands didn’t I?

"Him?"

“Yeah, he started annoying me, so I kicked him out not too long ago." I knew I was frowning again but I could care less.

"Where's your mother?"

"Where do you think she is?" Her eyes narrowed and at first I was thrown off by the question but then it hit like a bullet, her tone the trigger.

"Oh. I'm..."

"There's no need. It was during my birth so other than pictures I have no memories of her I can actually miss." Her tone was flat, but the way she smiled held volumes and it took everything in me to not go to her side.

"So, did you grow up with your father?"

"For a while, on and off." She said with a shrug.

"Where were you before?"

"I lived in the countryside with my Nan for a couple years before I moved back to the city about three years ago. Now I'm here in this town."

"Atlas. How old..."

"I'm nineteen Sensei. Twenty next February." My shock must be quite obvious because she chuckles lightly before getting up to get her satchel. She should already be at uni? Removing a book from her bag she hands it to me and I study the cover before realizing it was another one of her manga. Different to the one... I cleared my throat dismissing the thought. Opening it I stare at the neatly written notes. Confused I skim through further before looking up at her again.

"This..."

"Yes, it's the notes from your lessons last week. I apologise again for my absence."

"How..."

"Well since I already learnt everything in the first textbook by myself and with Mrs. Reese, I figured you'd be moving on. So, reading through your PowerPoint and looking at the essay question I figured that was the section you were most likely teach and made my notes accordingly. As for the hypothesis and formulas, I learnt the basics a while ago so adapting them wasn't that hard." The basics?! Is she serious? This is beyond basics.

"You're simply... amazing," I browse through her notes again, "they're clear and precise and quite close to my own," I look up at her again in disbelief to find her staring at me, "...what?"

"Nothing. Your body language always seems to light up when you talk about science… I also thought you’d think I was belittling your abilities as a teacher..."

"Oh..." I could feel my ears get warmer and I revert my gaze at the notes to avoid her eyes, “In all honesty, your dedication really makes me proud to be a teacher… I can’t help that I love the subject so much though.”

"Is that why you became a science professor? Love?"

"That's part of the reason, yes."

"I see. So, is there anything else you'd like to know to put your parental instincts to rest Sensei?" I roll my eyes at her obvious gab, clearing my throat.

"Well, now that I know you're not underage I feel more at ease..." my voice trails off as she covers her mouth, attempting to muffle her cheeky snicker.

"At ease huh. About what exactly? Me living alone or what happened at the bookstore?" My ears seem to get warmer and I coughed in embarrassment.

"Uh, both I guess," I reply clearing my throat, still avoiding eye contact. The silence between us carried on for longer than intended; becoming slightly awkward.

"Any more questions?"

"Oh, right," pull yourself together man, "Why did you leave your fathers’ house?"

"We didn't see eye to eye on... a lot of things."

"Is he the reason you've had to miss so many lessons?"

"Yes."

"Wouldn't you prefer to be at school?"

"Not really if I'm honest. Although I do hate the game he's playing, The Academy is just as dreadful for me."

"Why is that? The Academy I mean?""

"Well you already know my nickname, though, I don't entirely hate it..."

"You should."

"I don't really mind, it makes keeping to myself easier. Plus, to speak out against it will only open wounds I know some people still carry." She somehow looks sad as she says that and I could tell there was more to it that was she was letting out.

"Care to talk about it." Her eyes focus on me as though trying to find a way to talk but she eventually sighs, looking away.

"No."

"Alright. So, why did you start schooling late? I’m pretty confident you didn't get held back because you are," I held the book up, "not a delinquent..."

"I was born prematurely to an already sick mother and due to birth complications, I was frequently ill. When it came time for me to start middle school I got worse, and it took awhile for me to be fit enough to attend normal school. During that time, I lived with gran because the air was cleaner or whatever where she lived.” I wasn’t that stupid to believe that plain as fuck lie though. I knew Father just didn't want a sick child hindering him.

“I don't really care that I had to leave the main house because I preferred living with gran anyways. By the time I got better, two years had already passed, nan asked father to get me enrolled into The Academy… and here we are Sensei.” She seats back as she stops talking and stares at me so I knew that was the end of that. I guess the rumours about her father and the Chairman are true then.

"Do you have siblings?"

"One."

"Do they also attend The Academy?"

"No. They were already a senior there when I joined, so I didn't really see him that much at school.”

“Are you guys close?” She visibly flinches at the question and I automatically regretted asking.

“After father suddenly took a liking to me, he avoided me at home too so our relationship wasn't and still isn't the greatest." Hmm… her eyes soften whenever she mentions her brother the same way it does for her Nan.

The look in her eyes was written with loss, literally and without asking I knew she'd lost her most important people. Shaking off the urge of wanting to embrace her, I clear my throat, returning to our conversation .

"What's your brothers' name?"

"August."

"August Winters?"

"No. He uses father's name. I use grandmothers name."

"Oh. And what's your fathers' name?"

"Next question." She shifts slightly, the tone in her voice indicating it was no use pushing so I moved forward.

"Alright," before I know it the question left my mouth, "Who are the men you have in here frequently?"

"Is that really your next question?" Her brows arch as though she was mocking me and I look away frowning.

"You really are quite cute, Sensei..." grinning she gets up before disappearing down the hallway. I'm about to get up when a tabby jumps onto the sofa staring at me as its owner does. Great, even the cats laughing at me. Sitting down, I begin petting him and he moves onto my lap purring. And he's just as cute as his master.

"He must find you annoying too." At the sound of her voice, I look up to find her leaning against the frame of the shoji doors that were now blocking the hall from my view.

"You changed."

"I know. It is nearly midnight after all." At the mention of the time, I stare at my watch.

"Shit, you're right. I should get going." Picking up the cat I carefully place him on the sofa, making my way to the entrance as she quietly follows behind. I could feel her eyes following my every move but it wasn’t uncomfortable and I couldn’t help but smile.

As I finish strapping up my boots, I turn to face her and she picks up my helmet handing it to me. The oversized shirt she's wearing hangs loosely on her frame. God, is this the devil in the flesh? I take hold the outstretched helmet but instead of waiting for her to let go I pull it and she falls towards me, causing her to shriek a bit from surprise. Holding onto her I turn, pinning her between the door and myself dropping the helmet, using my now free hand to lift her chin up. Her eyes fill with shock momentarily before she narrows them staring at me.

"Why didn't you stop me from kissing you earlier?"

"Why? Should I have?" I stare down at her, the oversized shirt doing a pretty shit job at hiding the curves of her breast - or is it just my eyes knowing exactly where to look...? Blinking continuously I fight to calm myself. Dear God.

"Who are the men you mentioned earlier?" The question left my lips before I could think but all I got was a smile from her in return.

"Are you a jealous man Sensei?"

"No." Even I didn't believe that and I could tell neither did she.

"They work for the main house. Whenever the old man drags me into his stupid game and I get busy they come over to... help."

"Help how?

"Martin makes sure I'm always on top of work and well rested and Roye makes sure I'm not just eating take away and frozen foods. And Steph is just the mom of everyone. I could survive alone but they worry too much."

"I see."

"Do you feel at ease now?" She questions, arching her brow, a sly smile at the corner of her mouth.

"I do. But, what will you tell them if one of your neighbours were to inform them about my being here?"

"I'm not a child sensei. I'm allowed to have..." she looks me up and down biting her lip, "men over." Without warning, she steps forward and out of surprise I step back tripping over the opening rise falling flat on my ass. Without hesitating or warning, she places a leg on either side of me placing herself flush on my dick. Fuck slacks. And, oh god she's only wearing underwear. I swallow hard trying to avoid looking at her bare thighs on display as her shirt had risen due to her position; along with the warmth the came with. I mean obvious I failed since I just described it. Sigh.

"You look quite sexy when you’re jealous, Yu-Chan." I've fallen in love with how she says my name. Even with the feminine tone she uses, I couldn’t help but feel turned on by it.

"And you're quite sexy when you look at me like that." I sit up my face inches away from hers, my hand at the curve of her ass. She's actually got a sexy ass figure. The tug from earlier stirs again and I bite my bottom lip, closing my eyes to try and calm myself. Obviously it was failing and groaned inwardly as I felt myself twitch. Since when have younger girls turned me on this much?!

"Sensei," her voice is almost a whisper in my ears and my eyes shot open. Fuck it, I accept failure, "If you don't take care of him soon, he’s going to hurt later." It takes me way too long to figure out what she was referring to and by the time I could make sense of it all she was already creasing my dick through my trousers. So much for trying to be calm. Collecting all the energy left in me, I kiss her cheek and place my hand over hers.

"Atlas." My voice is almost a whisper and I feel her smile against my neck.

"I know." She removes her hand placing it gentling on my cheeks before leaning in, planting a gentle kiss on my forehead. I inhale deeply hugging her close burying my face in the curve of her neck. God, she smells good.

"Why does it feel like you know me better than I know myself?" She chuckles lightly in my ear at my question and I clench my jaw fighting back my beast fighting for control.

"Because you wear your heart on your sleeve Yuzuki-San..."

"I do?"

"Though it seems to be heavily guarded..." she moves away slightly to look me in the eyes, "why did you kiss me Sensei?" Her eyes seem moist and innocent and I stare at her. It couldn't be. There's no way.

"Atlas... was that... your first kiss?" I cup her face, finger creasing her bottom lip still slightly swollen.

"It was. First time for everything that followed too." I gawk at her in disbelief and she frowns slightly her lips turning up at the corner.

"But you were so... good at everything." She blushes, bringing her lips to my ear.

"I read a lot, Yuzuki-san." I shiver at my name and the way her breath tickles my ear. Placing my hands around her back I lift her up as I stand myself up and she giggles.

"What's so funny?"

"You jumped a bit when my lips touched your ear." Fuck. There's no way I'm letting her know that the way she says my name turns me on - though I’m sure she’ll figure that out sooner or later .

"Hmph... I have sensitive ears from continuously wearing a helmet."

"Is that so? Do all riders have sensitive ears because of their helmets?" She arches her brows mockingly.

"Y-yes."

"But I don't." She says pointing to the helmet on the shelf near her keys. I just walked straight into that one, didn't I? Again. Lame, very lame.

"You actually have a bike? I mean Owen said you did but..." She smiles, getting on her tiptoes to kiss me lightly.

"Goodnight Yuzuki Sensei." I frown as she blatantly dodges my question.

"So you do." She sticks out her tongue and I laugh softly.

"You are a handful Ms. Winters."

"Please just call me Atlas." She promptly replies, a slight pout on her lips.

"Well then, how about you drop Sensei and just continue to call me Yuzuki when we're alone… in any form you like." I grin slyly at her and she chuckles nervously avoiding my eyes.

"Will do." she smiles and my grin broadens.

"Hmm. People will die from shock when they find out you do know how to talk… a lot...” Or how absolutely adorable you can be. On second thought, I’d like to be the only one.

"They know I can talk. They just always seem to distort my words making me look insensitive… so I choose to stay silent."

"I see." she really is a strong. Sensitive and thoughtful.

"Yuzuki?"

"Huh? Yeah?"

"I said you should get going because the rain seems to have let up and you'll cry if your bike gets towed."

"Oh, yes. You're right," I release her and she bends down to pick up my helmet, "Thank you." She opens the door and steps aside for me to pass by.

"Atlas," I take out my phone unlocking it and handing it to her, "your number please."

"My..." It's actually cute how she's surprised by the simplest things.

"Yes. Although I know now that you're old enough and capable I still don't feel at ease about you being alone here."

"As my teacher or..." I cut off her sentence with a kiss.

"As... me..." I whisper to her lips.

"Well then. If you insist," she taps in her number and hands it back to me, "I'm very bad at replies though so..."

"Then I guess I'll always have to call you." I smile as I save her number before calling her number. The soft ringtone echoing from the living room and I cut the call, "that's me so save it." I say, kissing her forehead.

"I will." She says in almost a whisper and I notice she's blushing again. Good, now you understand the embarrassment I felt.

"You really are too cute," I lean in to kiss her again but stop myself with a sigh, "I really should stop or I'll never leave." She smiles and kisses my cheek.

"I don't doubt that." I wave goodbye, walking towards the elevator but stop and turn to look at her. She's perched against her doorway watching me leave but stands up straight as I pace back towards her.

"What're yo..." I pull her close covering her mouth with mine and a moan leaves her lips. As I pull away I bite her top lip and she inhales her eyes are still shut and I kiss them.

"Goodnight Atlas. See you tomorrow."

"See you." She says smiling as I walk back to the elevator. She doesn't go in until the elevator doors open and I step in and I can't help but chuckle.

"So cute." I sigh and lean against the elevator wall. I groan as I'm reminded of my boner, that's very noticeable. Turning away from the camera I place my head against the elevator wall as I try to tuck it safely away painlessly. Fun.

As I exit the elevator and fetch my keys from my pocket I catch the curious stares of a few people heading in or out of the building. Ignoring them I exit the building sighing in relief as I find my bike’s still there. Thank you, Jesus. Whipping of the few drops of water that were on the seat, I put my helmet on and drive home through the drizzle in silence. Today truly was interesting. As if timed, my phone goes off as soon as I walk into my apartment and I groan as I see Jons' name pop up.

"What?!"

"Somebodies in good spirits."

"What do you want?"

"Just checking you got home alive. You did drink and drive and it was raining."

"Yeah, I got home safely..." there’s a short pause, "Jon?"

"What happened?"

"What do you mean?"

"You sound less grumpy and more cheerful than when we spoke earlier."

"Nothing happened, you idiot." I mean, I can't tell him I made out with a student... right? I mean the guy may be gay and change his partners like the weather, but I think he might be drawn the line at fraternizing with students... even if they are old enough.

"Hmmmmm. I smell something."

"Shut up. Anyways I'm tired, hungry and there's some business I need to take care of before heading to bed so, goodnight."

"Business..." I hear him chuckle on the other end, "Why don't you just say you're going to fap in the shower, Senpai? I feel bad for your shower drains, Senpai."

"F-Fa…” I flush and I knew he was grinning on the other end, “Goodnight Jon Wilson!" His laugh rings through the phone even as I remove it from my ear and cut the call. Idiot. I dropped everything at the door and head straight for the shower. You weren't wrong but you're still an idiot. Before I head into the shower, I send her a good night text and one to many minutes later she replies.

"You were right. You are terrible at replies."

"Shut up."

"XD. Go to bed Atlas. Goodnight."

"Goodnight Yuzuki-san."

Today really was interesting.

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