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Derek watches me intently waiting for me to talk. "So what's your story?" I ask. "I feel like you know a lot about me and I know nothing about you?"

He drops his gaze from me thinking about it for a moment and then speaks, "Well I was born and raised in Boston. I know I don't have an accent but my parents never did so they think that's why." I laugh at that. "My dad played for the Bruins till I was about twelve and then he retired and became a SportsCenter caster for hockey. I started playing hockey shortly after that."

He meets my eyes again and I can tell what comes next isn't the most fun topic for him to share. I bet he's staring at my aftermath crying face of red splotches and considering why he's even talking to me. But right now, I can't think like that. He's here. And he's talking to me.

"My dad was diagnosed with stage four bone cancer my second year playing hockey," he remarks sadly. "Hockey helped distract me from the rough time my dad went through and lead me here." He says with a sad smile. "My mom is the strongest person I know and supported me all the way through." He smiles and looks at me, watching my sympathetic expression.

"I'm so sorry for what happened to your dad," I say sadly. "But like you said, you remember him, so he's always with you, Derek."

His blue eyes turn soft. "It's all good Mayfield. I can't believe I never knew you until now."

I put my head down and try to hide my blush. "Well I am a freshman so I've only been here for two months." I say giggling.

He shrugs his shoulders. "You okay now?" He asks.

I nod. "Yes, thanks to you." I smile.

He returns my smile. "I'm glad." He says, warmly.

And like clockwork, I yawn again. "I should probably sleep." I say after yawning.

Derek goes to get up, my stomach boils with anxiety and I don't know why. "I'll go then." He says.

He gets close to the door. "Derek," he stops and turns to look at me.

My breathing is a little erratic but I keep my cool. "Would you um... mind staying until Daphne gets back?"

Him and I both know she's not coming back here tonight.

"Yeah sure," he says. "If that's what you want."

I nod and he returns back to his spot on the bed. I lay myself down on the bed and stare at Derek whose eyes are closed and his head rests on the wall. "Night, Mayfield."

"Goodnight, Derek." I say and my eyes flutter closed. And for the first time in a long time, I completely relax.


The next morning when I open my eyes I feel a weight on my legs. I look up and realize I must have stretched out my legs and they ended up under Derek's. Who is still leaning against the wall fast asleep. I feel awful that I made him sleep like that. His neck is probably is killing him.

I grab my phone and check to see that Daphne texted around one am claiming she'd be back at noon. I look up at the time and it's eleven thirty. I panic a bit because Derek is still here. I sit up and debate waking him. He looks so peaceful. His hair drops over his eyes so I can almost barely see them and his bottom lip looks like it pouts out a little bit.

I scoot myself closer to him and push his shoulder to try and wake him. He stirs and his eyes flutter open. His dark eyebrows scrunch together as if he's confused on where he is but when he locks his eyes on me, it clicks.

He widens his eyes to try and wake himself as well as rubbing them. "Morning, Mayfield."

"Morning," I say. "I'm sorry you had to sleep like that." I say, sympathetically.

"S'all right," he says. "I slept fine." He lies, while rubbing his neck to try and ease a kink probably.

"Uh huh sure," I say, sarcastically and chuckle a little.

"I mean I could have laid down but you might have beat me up." He teases.

I scoff. "I would not have," I say back.

Derek raises an eyebrow. "You sure about that?" He accuses. "The way you punched my arm last night? I would have gone home today looking like I was mugged." He jokes.

I giggle at his joke and hop off my bed. I stand in front of him and hold my hand out. "Come on, lazy bones," I say. "Daphne will be here in twenty minutes."

He smirks and reaches for my hand. In the process, he stands up and he gets so close to me that our chests touch. I gasp at the closeness and he looks at me with an amused look on his face.

"Scared?" He remarks, remembering back to the first thing he said to me.

I roll my eyes and shove him. He just laughs at me and heads to the door. Just as he's about to turn the doorknob he looks back at me. "Some of my teammates and I are having a bonfire Monday night and they said we should invite others." He says and I stare at him confused on why he bring it up. "I'm sure Daphne is going so you should come."

I stare blankly at him. Did he just invite me to his house? For a bonfire? With his teammates? Oh, I need to stop. Daphne is going to be there. It's implied I should go too.

I realize I haven't given him an answer. "Uh yeah sure," I scratch the back of my head. "I'll see what I'm doing, but I'm sure I can."

He nods. "See you then Mayfield." He waves and leaves the dorm. I bite my lip and consider all that happened in the last twenty four hours.

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