19. silence and sorries

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I run into Adam outside the library the next day

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I run into Adam outside the library the next day. He laughs when I tell him about my Ian drama, and I don't even know why I do, except that he doesn't know me or Ian well enough to take a side. Adam is safe. If somewhat an asshole for laughing.

"Don't be a dick." I shove at his shoulder. He laughs harder.

"I'm just really glad I never had a crush on you," he says. "You make it hard on a guy, Kavya."

I hide a smirk; ever since the first day of dance practice, he's made it a point to say my first name. Repeatedly. Annoyingly so. It's more for my benefit than his, I think. He wants to prove to me that he knows it, now.

"I saw this coming, by the way," Adam adds. "All those heated glares and arguments were leading up to this."


"Don't be so indignant." He rolls his eyes. "You can't tell me it never crossed your mind that you two would make a crazy-great power couple. Why are you trying to beat each other for student president? You know it's just a figurehead position, right? It's not like you can cancel homework or fire the shitty teachers."

"Prez gets their own parking spot," I mutter.

"Oh, the parking spot. Well, that makes total sense."

"You're making fun of me, aren't you?"

"What gave it away?"

Some guys can pull off innocence, but hoo boy, Adam is not one of them. I hop off the stone ledge outside the library entrance and scowl.

"Dude, smile," says Adam. "I swear I have no clue how Ian likes you when you make that face all the time."

"One, not a dude. Two, don't ever tell a woman to smile."

Adam huffs.

"Dude," I say sweetly, baring my teeth at him in the most ferocious smile I can muster. "Seriously. I mean it. Don't."

He flashes his palms at me, wincing. "Got it, got it. Sorry. Just drop that expression, okay? It's creepy."

I stalk off; he ruins it by following me, bounding like a puppy. It's hard to be mad at him, which just makes me more irritated. I am weak for cute boys, even if I have to educate them a little. "What are you doing here, anyway?" I ask, grabbing the door handle before he can open it.

"I might be an ignorant douche sometimes, but I do read, you know, Kavya."

"I didn't mean it like that!"

Inside, the library is blissfully air-conditioned. I head for the main desk, where all the librarians know me enough not to bat an eye at the reading slips I dump in front of them. Adam's eyes bug out.

Sandra, who's been there forever, or at least since I was a little kid, smiles kindly at him. She pushes her pince-nez up her nose and twinkles at me before saying, "Impressive. This is three more than last week. You must really want that prize pack." She winks, because duh, and she knows it, too.

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