Wyn’s steps down the front of the faculty building stairs were quick. So were the flash of texts she sent to Jas, Farhan and Billie telling them of her good news. She would call her parents later. Her body vibrated with excitement. A full semester abroad, experiencing a new culture, learning about the history of its people through antiquated objects. It was a dream come true, and she couldn’t wait for her feet to touch new soil. Wyn walked across the quad quickly, wanting to make it to the library before it got too crowded. She had an anthropology exam coming up, and needed all the study time she could get.
The library was colder than it was outside, it’s chilly stale air overtaking her as she entered. The only thing that could be heard in the silence of the main room was occasional coughing. Wyn found a small desk in the back corner of the room. Secluded enough. Opening up her textbook, she tried to concentrate on the work in front of her. However, excitement over her news, was still occupying her thoughts. Wyn pulled her phone out of her pocket, no one had responded yet. Usually one of the three of them texted her back immediately.
“It’s still pretty early, maybe they are in class?” she thought to herself, as her eyes wandered out of a nearby window. Suddenly Wyn’s text notification went off several times (X). It was loud, and several bowed heads rose around her. “Sorry…” she whispered loudly, putting her phone on mute and unlocking her phone.
[”Congrats boO!…Call me after class!” – Jas]
Only able to study off and on for a few hours, Wyn left the library headed for her dorm. With the rest of the free from class and work, she planned to spend the afternoon down by the pond. It was her favorite place to be on days off. Back in her room, she changed into some more comfortable lounging clothes, grabbed her bag and lucky fishing rod. As she went to leave, she walked past her full length mirror. Her reflection has caught her eye, so she stopped and turned. Wyn didn’t look in the mirror often, usually it was only to get dressed in the morning, and to get ready for bed at night. Looking just now, she realized that some of the waterproof eyeliner and mascara that Jasmine had put on her remained, making her eyes seem fuller. It wasn’t often that she wore makeup. But this week it means wearing it for the second day in a row. Gazing at her reflection just now, she didn’t mind it. “Wouldn’t hurt to wear it every once in awhile,” she thought as she headed out the door.
“Hey Wyn! Goin fishing?!” from voice from down the hall yelled, “Yeah!” she replied, true to her path out of the building, she didn’t know who it was, and didn’t turn around to find out. “Catch me somethin’ for dinner!” they replied. Wyn rolled her eyes, “Hahaha…yeah, sure!…..” she said loudly, followed by a soft, “sike”.
It was still fairly chilly out by the pond, but it had warmed up a bit since she had been out that morning. Settling near her favorite spot, she whipped her fishing pole in the air. The rod swung in a wide arch and then snapped, sending the bait and hook flying through the air. It landed gracefully in the water with a small “plop”. Wyn started spinning the reel slowly. The breeze wafted past her, the smell of stagnant water filling her nose. “Hmm, this may not be a good spot today…” she thought. Suddenly she felt a tug on her bait, “OOO! Got somethin!!!” she started spinning her reel faster, keeping control of the heavy tugging on the other end of the line.
After a few moments a baited fish appeared above the water. “GOT IT!” she almost yelled, bringing the end of the rods towards her. “Aw, Hi Mr. Fishy!” she cooed, as she unhooked the small fish, throwing it back into the water. There were city ordinances against keeping fish that you caught, but she didn’t mind returning the fish to their home. She just loved the peace and quiet, and the thrill of landing a catch.
Wyn had been fishing for awhile when she decided to take a break. She sat down on the ground, picking up her phone and checking her messages.
[“Wow! Wyn. Congrats. Thats dope.” – Han]
[“Where are you? Wanna meet up?” – Han]
[“I got some free time before music theory, HMU” – Han]
Wyn smiled, and texted him back quickly, [“I’m at the pond. Come by?”]
[“I TOLD YOU. They would be nuts to NOT send you.” – Jasmine]
[“BTW. Don’t forget about your date with Gustavo tonight! I gave him your number to text you. Lova YA!” – Jasmine]
“Ugh,” she thought, “I really don’t want to go on this date at all.” She thought for a moment and then responded to Jas, [“I didn’t forget don’t worry.”], she would deal with that later tonight. For now she would spend some time reading.
Completely absorbed in her book she didn’t notice when a shadow appeared over her. The sun was high in the sky then, so when she looked up all she saw was a halo of fire attached to a tall, muscular body. “Hey!” the voice called down to her. Wyn shifted her weight laying on her back and Farhan’s familiar face came into view. “Hey! You made it!” she said excitedly, standing up to give him a hug.
Once again, Wyn’s senses betrayed her when they embraced. He smelled like the beach and those cheap pina colada candles he was always burning. His embrace was tight, enveloping her in warmth. I lasted a moment longer than normal. “Congrats!” he said when they pulled away, “That’s awesome. I knew you would get it.” Wyn grinned widely and half jumped in the air, “Yeah! I’m so excited. SOOOO excited. It’s for the whole semester.”
Wyn laid back on the ground staring up at the clouds that appeared. Farhan joined her. “The whole semester huh?” he wondered aloud, turning his head to look at her. “Who am I going to smoke with on Sundays?” his voice rose in question. “Yeah, a whole 15 weeks. And you have sooooo many other folks who would love to smoke with you for free,” she laughed. “Pft, those other mf’s have to pay me,” his voice was lazy. “Why don’t I have to pay you?” she asked him turning to gaze over in his direction. His long red hair rippled over the dense grass he was laying on, it looked like many tiny trails of fire. Wyn’s eyes traveled down the rest of his body making note of how his chest rose and fell. The goosebumps on his arm were prominent from laying in the cool grass.
“Cause,” he replied. “Cause??? That’s not an answer,” she argued. “Yeah it is, just cause. Your my best friend, why would I charge you. Plus you smoke like a bird,” he took a deep breath and placed his palm behind his head, “You know the more time I spend outside, the more and more I like bein’ out here? Like in nature and shit. It’s just so peaceful, ya know?”
“Yeah I know what you mean,” she smiled and looked back up at the sky. “So, give me the deets on this meeting. What did Longacre say,” he asked her, turning on his side to face her. His face was fully flushed from being under the sun, his hair yet again framing his face in a red halo. Wyn almost couldn’t help staring. “Ahem,”she cleared her throat to speak, “It went really well! He said I got high reccs from my professors and he is really excited for me. Only caveat. Gustavo Rivera is going,” she sighed in frustration at her last sentence. “What?” Farhan asked confused, “I thought it was only one student going?”
“Yeah, that’s what I thought, originally it was just going to be him. They convinced the board to include more funds so I could go cause I am so awesome,” she chuckled to herself. “Well. You are awesome. But Gustavo. Tsk.” Farhan sucked his teeth annoyed.
“I know. I am not really happy about it. I’m already supposed to go to dinner with this dude, now I have to spend a whole semester with him,” Wyn’s voice fell flat. “Wait. Dinner?” he asked suddenly, his expression turning into a frown, “When did this happen?”
Wyn looked over at him, her brows furrowed, “…At the party last night, Jas was begging me. He said if I go to dinner with him and he would introduce her to Eric…” her words trailed off. Farhan’s expression turned even more sour and he laid flat on his back, “Ain’t that some shit.” Wyn was confused, she knew he didn’t particularly like Gustavo but his reaction was throwing her off, “I mean. I’m not too happy about it either…”
“Wyn. You don’t know him like I know him. Especially around women…I don’t…ugh never mind,” his fist hit the ground in frustration. “Hey hey! What the fuck? Why are you acting like this? If he is like a creep or something like, I don’t wanna go.” Wyn sat up, looking down at his angered face. “He’s not a creep like that….It’s…just… Wyn. They call him the Lady Killer. Once he sets his gaze on some chick, he will stop at nothin’ to smash. That’s just how he is. Just be careful with him alright?” Farhan sat up for a moment, sighed, and then stood.
Wyn looked up at him from her seated position, “Where are you going? What’s wrong with you???” His hand closed into a fist and his jaw clenched for a moment, then he spoke, “It’s nothing Wyn. Just. I’m happy for you, I hope you have a wonderful time,” his expression had changed and his hand relaxed as he looked down at her, “I mean it. Anyway. I got to get to class. I’ll catch you later.” Wyn sat there confused, what was that reaction? Why did he care? She was a big girl and could take care of herself. She laughed at the idea of her getting involved with that arrogant asshole Gustavo, even if he was kinda hot. Why did he care so much anyway? It’s not like he was interested. But still, Farhan’s reaction unnerved her, maybe if she went by his room later, she could find out what the hell that was all about.
She had been sitting there for more than a minute, thinking about her recent exchange with Han when she got a text from a number she didn’t recognize. [“Let’s meet at Sully’s tonight at 7” – Gustavo]. “Ugh,” she thought to herself. Checking the time it was nearing 5PM and she knew she should start getting ready soon, she needed to shower and do something with her hair. Jasmine would want to inspect her outfit beforehand, and that would take god knows how long.