Ever the Damsel
Riley asked Evan to wait outside while she went in and grabbed her things, mostly because she knew her friend would be up to something with her boyfriend. As usual she could hear the music playing and the bed hitting the wall. Riley shook her head and went into her room. She threw a bunch of her clean clothes into a bag and went to the bathroom to grab some more. Evan stood in the doorway of her little apartment looking around. Riley sighed but figured the faster she got out of there the better, maybe he wouldn't see the chipping paint, or realize that the walls were supposed to be white and not tinged grey. She turned around into the small bathroom and cleaned off her shelf behind the mirror, grabbing her toothbrush from the cup she kept on the counter. She had thrown together a bag in no time and turned to Evan with a smile.
“It’s so small,” Evan said looking around, “I think your apartment could fit into my bedroom.”
“Gee thanks,” Riley said, her grin fading, “Not all of us are made of money, you know.”
Evan blushed and took Riley’s hand as they left the small apartment. Riley was hesitant about the whole hand holding thing. It made her nervous because she just wanted to be friends, but she didn’t want to make him upset so she let him hold her hand, reminding herself that it was just a friendly gesture. She took him to the parking lot and led him to her little beater of a car. He looked at it like he thought it would fall apart at any moment. He laughed that the mirror was being held on by duct tape. The small green car had dents and scratches, but it was what she could afford and for the most part, it got her where she needed to go.
“Duct tape fixes everything right?” Evan said nudging Riley.
“You, bet!” Riley replied with a giggle, “Don’t go to fast with your speed demon over there. My beater can’t go 0-60 in seconds. It takes at least two minutes.”
“I’ll go nice and slow for you and your snail,” he said patting her head and giving a chuckle. He got into his fancy car and pulled out waiting for her. She followed him to the nicer part of town, through a large gate with a guard, who waved her through, while staring at her car with a bit of a shocked look. Riley gave him a shy wave, and the guards smile warmed up. They pulled up to his huge house in no time. Evan opened two of his three garage doors and pulled in to the first one. He pointed for her to park in the next one over.
“I’m seriously thinking of getting you a company car,” Evan said with a laugh.
“What you don’t like Bessy?” Riley asked.
“I just don’t want to be seen with her. Got to watch my reputation, you know. If I want fast girls I need fast cars, and all,” Evan said with a shrug. Riley laughed and put her hand on her hip.
“You are so not like that! You might think you are or want to be, but no. Sorry, you’re too sweet to be like that. Don’t get me a car though. I already owe you too much,” Riley said with a laugh. They went into the house through the garage. Evan handed her a key and a garage door opener. Riley looked around the spacious hallway. It was plain with just a painting on a wall, no pictures or “home” feel. Evan led her to a door and opened it for her.
“This one’s your room,” Evan said hitting the light switch.
Riley walked into the room and looked at the white carpet. She kicked off her shoes before walking further. The room was very modern with its straight lines. It was black, white, and red. Riley looked at the black bed frame with white pillows and comforter. There were a few red pillows thrown on top of it. This room was also bigger than her apartment. She stepped into the bathroom and couldn’t believe how big it was. Then she went over to the huge walk-in closet. She turned and looked at Evan who stood in the doorway smiling at her.
“Will it work for you?” Evan asked leaning against the door jamb and crossing his arms.
“Oh, I won’t complain,” Riley said with a laugh, “It is a bit manly though.”
“Well it is my house, sorry,” Evan said with a shrug, “Let me show you where the kitchen is.”
Evan backed out of the room and Riley followed him down the hall. She stopped at the next door over, it was open, so she looked in. The covers were crumpled in the middle of the four post canopy bed. It had white gauzy curtains. She went into the room and hit the light. The room looked like a tropical getaway. There was a mural of a tropical beach on the wall that the bed faced. The furniture had a tropical feel to it, even though it was covered in clothes. There was something else in the room. Riley went over and pulled the clothes off of it and realized it was a hammock. She so wanted a hammock in her room, but it would look out of place there. It fit in perfectly here. She wondered if Evan would mind her hanging out in here, just to sit in the hammock. She turned and saw Evan looking at her terrified. Riley smiled, the room was wonderful.
“I’m sorry it’s so messy, but it’s just me and I tend to be in a hurry,” he said nervously, “I wasn’t expecting company.”
Evan turned to the bed and grabbed some magazines off the floor blushing. Riley walked over to him. She had never seen him nervous like this and then she realized it was a swimsuit edition on top of the pile of magazines with half naked women and she blushed and turned away so he could put them away. She grabbed the clothes and found the laundry basket to put them in.
"This room is amazing, I like the tropical feel! And that hammock is awesome!" Riley said turning to him with a smile.
“Thanks, but you don’t have to clean in here. It’s mostly my mess,” Evan said blushing again, “Let me show you the kitchen and dining room.”
Evan led her the rest of the way down the hall and into an open doorway. Riley stepped into the huge kitchen with an island in the middle. It had big windows that overlooked the backyard of the house. There was a barn in back with fencing and it was huge and open. There was no garden or anything but she remembered that Evan was a bachelor and didn’t care about that stuff. There were a few dishes in the sink, but the counters were clear. He had a dishwasher and a huge stove and refrigerator.
“I can definitely work in here,” Riley said smiling at Evan and then she pointed to the barn, “Do you have a horse or something?”
“Not right now. I haven’t had the time, but I want to get a few eventually. My family loves horses. My brother has a ranch,” Evan said with a shrug, “Do you like animals?”
“Yeah, I’ve never had any, though. We couldn’t afford a pet, but my friend had a lab and it was the best dog ever. She would let me walk him sometimes,” Riley said looking down sadly, “I understand that you’re busy, but if you want to get a pet I wouldn’t be opposed to it. I’d help take care of it.”
Evan smiled, “Okay, I’ll think about it then.”
Evan showed her the gorgeous dining room and living room. He even showed her the den where the TV and computer were.
“I know you probably could use the computer for your essays and stuff,” Evan said with a shrug.
“I have a laptop, but if you don’t mind I’d like to use the printer. My printer sucks,” Riley replied with a shrug, “I better get to bed. I have school in the morning.”
“Oh, yes, sure. Uhm… I have a date tomorrow night so you don’t have to make dinner for me tomorrow,” Evan said nervously running his hand through his hair. Riley nodded, noticing that it was a nervous habit of his, now that his hair was longer. She was tempted to run her fingers through it herself. His hair was so tempting to touch; it looked so soft and silky. Riley turned and started walking to her room. She had never thought of Evan that way before and she didn’t even think to ask if he had a girlfriend before moving in. What was she thinking; of course he would have a girlfriend. He was gorgeous and nice. She never stood a chance. If only she had known what he was like before, things might have been different. He was with a girl in the beginning, but if she hadn’t been taken in by Chris maybe she might be with him. Riley went into her room and shook her head. No, he was too good for her, plus she needed this job. She took off her clothes and threw on a sleep shirt. Climbing into the soft bed and falling back onto the fluffy soft pillows she closed her eyes. She couldn’t help but smile imagining she was sleeping on a cloud.
Riley woke with a start. The room was still dark and she saw the flash. A few moments later came the loud boom of the thunder. Riley screamed and pulled the covers over her head. She had a flashback of being in the car with her mom. Another boom came and Riley screamed again, remembering her mom holding her down. They had been homeless, living in the car, and a gang fight had happened outside the car. The thunder reminded her of the sound of the gun shots being fired. Another boom came making her scream again. She was so scared. There was a boom and then someone shouted her name. Riley lay still trembling all over she couldn’t move she was so scared. Someone pulled the covers off of her and she screamed again jumping into a pair of strong arms and holding tightly to the solid body. She was holding on for dear life.
“Riley, it’s okay, it’s just thunder,” Evan said holding her in his arms. Riley looked at him in the dark room and recognized his voice. She relaxed leaning into him.
“I’m sorry, Evan. I should have told you that I was afraid of thunder,” Riley whispered. The thunder boomed again and Riley squeezed him tighter.
“Do you want me to stay with you, tonight?” Evan asked running his hand down her hair. Riley nodded her head and Evan climbed into the bed with her. Riley clung to him as the thunder rolled on. She was able to sleep in the warmth of his arms. His soft even breathing lulled her into slumber and she dreamt of him taking her into his arms and kissing her. They were at a beach and the warm breeze pushed her closer to him. The thunder vanished and was replaced by the booming of the waves hitting the shore. Evan started waltzing with her and getting her to laugh with his jokes. Riley woke to the buzzing of her alarm. The weight of a leg over hers confused her for a minute. She had forgotten that he had stayed with her. She could smell his expensive cologne and snuggled back into him, not wanting to leave the warmth of his arms. She knew she had to get moving, but she didn’t want the moment to end. With a sigh she breathed in his scent once more before getting out of bed and grabbing some clothes. She glanced back at his slumbering form and smiled.
She went into the bathroom and turned the shower on. It had a little faucet at the bottom to test the water with her toes before getting in. Riley laughed at how fancy it was. Cheryl will be jealous, she thought to herself. She took a nice long hot shower, enjoying the fact that she wasn’t stealing all the hot water. She stepped out using the super soft towel. With a sigh she threw her clothes on, the normal jeans and polo because she wouldn’t have time to change after class. She stepped out of the bathroom and looked at the bed, but Evan was gone. Riley frowned and went over to make the bed. Then she went to the kitchen, but he wasn’t there yet. Must be taking a shower, she thought. She started the coffee and then pulled some bacon and eggs out of the fridge. She started the bacon and then cracked some eggs into a bowl. Evan came into the kitchen rubbing a towel on his head and taking a deep breath.
“Wow that smells good,” he said grabbing a mug and pouring himself a cup of coffee, “I could get used to this.”
“Sorry about last night. The thunder reminds me of gunshots,” Riley said pouring a little milk in and then mixing the eggs. She started cooking the eggs and turned the bacon.
“I don’t mind, princess,” Evan said taking a sip of the coffee, “It reminds me of that night that Cash cheated on me. I couldn’t sleep, but then you took me in your arms and held me. Chris said that I broke your stitches open. Sorry about that.”
Riley laughed and absently touched the scar that remained.
“I had completely forgotten about that,” she lied. It was just the day before that she had thought about him.
She finished making the breakfast and put it on a plate for him. He devoured it before she even sat down with her own plate and coffee.
“Sorry to eat and run, but I’m a bit late,” Evan said grabbing his plate and putting it in the sink.
“Bye Evan, I’ll see you later. Have a good time on your date if I don’t see you before,” Riley said sipping her coffee.
“Bye Princess thanks,” Evan said running down the hall. Riley shook her head and enjoyed the rest of her breakfast. She cleaned up the dishes when she was done and then quickly made Evan’s bed and threw his clothes into the laundry basket. She glanced at her watch and then ran out of the room. She had to hurry or she would be late for class. She'd have to start the laundry later.