Chapter 13 The fights

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Physics makes a mean mistress. As the date of Sean's USAPhO approached threateningly like a comet about to hit earth, I had begun to see less and less of him. Physics Olympiad was a phrase I never thought would appear in my life before, but it was now making a frequent guest appearance. (Yes, I know, how absurd.)

Sean abandoned me half the time for his studying sessions, and I tried to get used to the fact that I was dating the hottest nerdjock in the universe. I constantly reminded myself to be understanding, that he was a rare blend of intellect and physical ability and I should be proud of him, but it still frustrated me to no end. To make matters worse, basketball season was around the same time, and alternating between physics and basketball had left him with practically no free time.

After basketball practice one day, he and I chatted briefly before he announced he had to rush to the library. Again. Since Wikipedia was invented I didn't know why anyone would need the library anymore, aside from trying naughty things in there to add to the bucket list.

"I really want to spend more time with you," I whined. We had been dating for more than two months and my love for him was going strong. "How about I go to the library with you?"

"No, I'd rather you don't. I'll call you later."

"Why not?"

He leaned in close. "Because I'm seeing this librarian behind your back and I don't want you to know."

"Very funny." I set my lips in a thin line.

"Come on, you know why. I can't concentrate with you beside me."

"I won't say a single word to you. I'll just sit near you and read my own stuff." By my own stuff I meant Vogue. I almost never read anything and I was proud of it.

"But you're distracting and I'd want to look at you. Besides, you'll be really bored." He patted my head. "I'll call you after dinner."

I had come to acknowledge the fact that he stood his ground on certain things. I couldn't make him spend time with me when he didn't want to, and he always hung up the phone first. Clingy is not sexy, I told myself. I'm a strong independent woman and I have my own friends.

"Fine, fine," I said grouchily. "I'll go get a sundae."

Deep down I was getting more and more alarmed as I realized the power shift between us, as if the scale of affection was tipping faster. I knew it was immature to care, but I wanted The King much more than he wanted me.

I joined some other friends, Sandra, Jake, Dylan and Sydney (yes they were back together again to double-date us, we'd done it and no, it wasn't pretty), as they drove off to their afternoon treat. I used to like this sort of group gathering, but without Sean it just wasn't nearly as fun. Besides, they all liked to tease me about being ditched which was annoying.

"So you're unable to drag your boy toy here with you?" Sandra started. I didn't understand why but she always started her greetings with an insult and could somehow get away with it.

"He has to study for his physics exam." I couldn't believe myself how lame that sounded.

"Is that even normal? I mean, no time for a sundae?" Sydney said. Her eyes were innocent, but her lips twitched as if she was mocking me.

"Are you sure he's not cheating on you?" Dylan said, his arm around Sydney's shoulder. He was a serial cheater himself and fancy he had the nerve to question Sean's integrity.

"Shut up." I dug in my sundae, the spoon clicking loudly against the glass. "Sean's actually going somewhere with his life. Just wait till he invents something while the rest of us bag groceries." I was in fact getting really tired of defending for my boyfriend, especially when I wanted to ask half of the same questions myself.

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