She holds a hand up to silence him and turns her face to me, impatiently awaiting me to weigh in. I chew my lip for a moment, trying to formulate my response without fanning the fire. Unfortunately for Sienna, she easily sets everything ablaze. 


"I'm not going to tell you what to do with your body," I begin and she makes a stubborn sound of victory in Mason's direction while crossing her arms. I half-expect her to stick her tongue out at him.  ". . . but it is tacky."


Mason's resounding laughter fills the room. He throws his head back while the humor vibrates through his body and trembles his chestnut hair. Again, Sienna throws her body back in frustration, this time splaying her arms out, defeated. 


"Then what would you get?" she asks pointedly, while attempting to lean her head on Mason's shoulder. He rises up promptly and shakes off her wildly inappropriate gesture. No matter how hard she tries, he refuses to entertain her mostly trivial advances. I assume it is to preserve his morals and more importantly, his job. 


"I've never really thought about it," I shrug indifferently. I take a minute to think of my answer. I do find birds aesthetically pleasing. Also, my mother has been addressing me as such as of late.  "Maybe a raven or dove. I really like birds."


"See?" Mason dramatically exclaims, shaking his fists. He sits down at the table opposite of me and drags his messenger-style bag closer to him. He is often mistaken for a student here, as opposed to a faculty member. He couldn't be much older than us, although I've never asked.  "Something sensible."


"A bird?" Sienna twists her face sourly, not masking her distaste for my choice. She trudges to the table and deposits herself near me.


"Yes," I defend, feeling slightly self-conscious, sinking a bit lower in my seat.  "They're beautiful and free. I don't know. I'm not even the one getting the tattoo!"


"It's still a good choice," Mason nods while sifting through some papers from his seat at the table.  He pauses to smile up at me, displaying his prominent dimples.  "Very fitting."


"I'd never get one though," I finish as Sienna trudges to the table and deposits herself near me. She decides to rest her head on my shoulder this time. "Too much commitment."


"Spoken like a true bird," he laughs quietly, almost to himself. "Now I'd like to draw the attention from this obviously more important topic to something a little less crucial. Our year long research project."


"Talk about Jekyll and Hyde," Sienna mutters to me quietly, playing idly with a lock of her hair. 


"The first semester was spent identifying our topic and our questions to be answered and researching previous studies and scholar articles." He continues, not engaging in her banter. 


"In other words, the boring part," Sienna interjects while doodling on the corner of a paper. I see that it's her sorority letters. I laugh softly as she's really adamant about this tattoo. 

Stalking the SitterWhere stories live. Discover now