The snow covered the benches as we walked to the psych building. I got you a gift I told her. "Gawd," she said, but the corners of her mouth curled as she fought back the grin. She read the mug:
"Well, I didn't get you anything. What do you think of that?" I didn't think about it much, I was just happy to see her put the mug in her backpack.
"What's it like being a moth to a flame?" She stared staight ahead and seemed intent on creating an argument. I don't really see that, I stammered, you aren't fatal. I mean you're mean and stuff but you never really hurt anyone, so I don't think you are dangerous... "No," she cut me off "you, guys like you following women around making them feel guilty and shit, you're dangerous."
I waited in the hallway after the final exam for an hour. She did not come for the final which was supposed to be a quarter of the grade. I considered wandering over to her apartment, but she had threatened to call her landlord and identify me as a stalker if I came over there again. It was getting dark as the December sky moved from grey to pink grey. I started back toward the student center and that's when I saw her on a bench, staring at the ground. She had made several snow angels in the hill behind her and the snow still sat on the back of her coat. Her face was bright red, but as I got closer I could tell it was from tears and not from the snow.
Hey, I said. You missed the final.
"Thanks for the update, maybe I took it orally" I stared at her and she gave me the "fist against mouth" motion. I grimaced, but she just shook her head.
"No, I just made that up. I called the guy and will take it next week. My Mom called me last night. My shitty dog died yesterday. I got that stupid dog when I was 7 and he never listened to me. Ate three of my Strawberry shortcakes. Crappy dog. "
She stared at her boots as her voice trailed off. Hey, sorry, I didn't know, want to go get some coffee?
She looked at me for a long time. Dark eyes looking intently at my, considering options and maybe thinking about whether another smartass comment was in play. "Now, you go on. I'm gonna be here awhile. But you can over to my place for dinner. I will call in some Chinese and you can give me the answers to the final."
Great, no, wait, I can't do that, I spit out my words but as I looked away a snowball smacked me in the head.
"It's a joke." She smiled while shaking her head, "God, do you need it bad!" That part was true.