Introducing Nick & Lacy
I gathered up my homework from the floor at the foot of Kevin’s bed. Not that there was much to gather. We’d spent more time kissing than studying.
“Just stay for ten more minutes,” he begged, trying to tug away my backpack to stall me.
“I can’t, Kevin. If I don’t leave now your mom is going to come up in a few minutes and send me home.”
When I started to stand, he pulled me back to the carpet and pinned me down with a kiss. “Sneak back out later.”
“You take down bleach-blonde over there and I’ll think about it,” I bargained, nodding toward the poster of the naked model taped to the ceiling over his bed.
“That’s not fair. You’ve got dude posters hanging all over your room.”
“With their clothes on.”
He rolled his eyes. “I’ll take down Sheila when I don’t need her anymore.”
I grinned and tried to shove him off me. “You’ve seen me naked, remember?”
“That doesn’t count. We were nine and you didn’t have boobs yet,” he teased, copping a feel over my blouse.
I maneuvered his hand away by lacing my fingers with his and kissing his knuckles. “Your hormones can wait six more months. After graduation and the wedding.”
“No,” I said, laughing over his tireless persistence.
“Lacy. Kevin.” Kevin’s mother tapped a warning knock on the door. Kevin rolled away from me before she cracked it open to look in on us. “It’s getting late.”
“Five more minutes, Mom,” promised Kevin.
“Only five. It’s a school night.”
As soon as Rhonda Martin closed the door, Kevin turned to me, his face close to mine so he could murmur, “You know I was just teasing about the test drive thing, right?”
A smile started on his lips and spread to his dark eyes. “I can’t believe we’re sitting here talking about getting married and mom is nagging about it being a school night.”
“That’s because Rhonda doesn’t want us to get carried away while we’re up here alone,” I said, standing up and hoisting my backpack over one shoulder. I turned to see if Kevin was ready to walk me home but met his glare instead. “What?”
He shook his head and let out a derisive snort. “God forbid my fiancé might actually want to get carried away with me.”
From the darkness of my upstairs bedroom, I watched Kevin walk Lacy to her house next door. I wanted to be my kid brother when she rose up on her tiptoes to kiss him goodnight under the glow of her back porch light.
I wanted his girl, plain and simple.
And as much as they’d been fighting lately, with some patient, careful scheming on my part—and a little help from fate—the odds of a break-up were looking better every day.
The phone rang and I tore my sights from the window to answer it. “Nick. Talk.”
“What the hell, man?” said my best friend, Chris Perkins.
“I got an extra day tacked onto my weekend. I wanted to come home instead of hanging out in the dorm,” I explained.
“Can’t take control of the situation if I’m not here.”
I cracked my window and lay back against my headboard when Kevin left Lacy alone and she went inside. From my new position, I had a straight shot view of her bedroom window.
Since Lacy was an adolescent, she had a habit of climbing out onto her roof to stargaze from atop her dormered bedroom window. The weather never deterred her. Even now, in the chill of late November, she would simply carry a blanket out with her. Especially on nights when she and Kevin argued, like tonight.
I heard them all the way in my bedroom two doors down the hall.
“You coming home this weekend?” I asked Chris, who let out a suspicious cough that sounded weed-induced.
Chris hacked for a couple of seconds and then barely managed to rasp out, “Yeah.” He coughed a moment longer before finally clearing his throat. “Damn. Good shit. Want me to save you some?”
“Yeah.” Just then, Lacy pulled the shade covering her window. “Hey, gotta go.”
“They make support groups for guys like you, ya know.”
“See ya tomorrow,” I said, chuckling.
“Get some help, man.”