Home > Thief (Love Me with Lies #3)(5)

Thief (Love Me with Lies #3)(5)
Tarryn Fisher

Suddenly, she looked tired. “Are you trying to flirt with me?”

Damn. This had turned into one of the strangest female encounters I’d ever had. So, I told her my name.

“I’m sorry, what?”

“My name…” I offered her my hand. I just wanted to touch her. She was ice cold. It was like her personality seeped out of her skin. She pulled her little hand away too quickly.

“Yes, I was trying to flirt with you, until you shot me down, that is.” I don’t think in all the days I’d been alive and breathing, I’d ever shaken hands with a girl I wanted. It was awkward. For her too. Her brow creased, and she looked around the parking lot like she wanted someone to come save her.

“Listen, I’d love to stand around and feed into your ego with chit-chattery, but I have to go.”

Chit-chattery. She just made up a word and used it in a sentence to insult me. God. Who the hell was this woman? And if I could get her to stop being hostile, what would she taste like? She had already started walking away. I had to do something or say something that would at least make her remember me. So, I decided to insult her back.

“If you were born an animal — you’d be a llama,” I called after her. It was true. I happened to really like llamas. They were reserved and they always gave you the stink eye. When you pissed them off, they spat at you. I’d seen it happen to my brother at a petting zoo once. That’s when they became my favorite animal. But, she didn’t know that. She just knew I was comparing her to an animal. And it pissed her off.

“I’ll see you around,” I said, before turning away. And I would. I was going to chase this chilly, abrasive woman. I’d chase her all the way to her f**king ice palace and melt it down if I had to. I was used to women wanting me; she wanted nothing to do with me — wouldn’t even tell me her name. As I watched her walk away I knew two things: I wanted her, and it was going to be a lot of work.

No one knew who she was. I was completely baffled by it. The girl was so high above anything I’d ever seen, I thought every guy on campus would respond to my description — wicked dark hair, seething eyes, a waist small enough to wrap your hands around. I had to use my connections in the admissions office with a girl I’d dated in high school who still had a thing for me.

“Caleb, I’m not allowed to do this,” she said, leaning over the counter. I ignored her attempt at getting me to look at her cle**age.

“Just this once, Rey.” That’s all it took.

“Okay, building?”

I’d seen her walking into Conner’s.

“There are over five hundred girls in Conner’s. You’re going to have to be more specific.”

“Sophomore,” I said, guessing.

She typed something into her keyboard. “Great, now we have two hundred.”

I racked my brain for something else. Blue jeans, white shirt, black fingernail polish. I could take a guess at her major.

“Try pre-law or philosophy,” I said. She had one of those combative personalities that lawyers specialized in. But, she was staring up at a tree, deep in thought…

Rey looked around and then quickly spun the monitor toward me. I glanced through the column of photographs. There were about thirty to a page. She scrolled and my eyes searched.

“Hurry up, Casanova. I could get in trouble for this, you know.”

“She’s not there,” I said after a few seconds. I tried to look nonchalant. “Oh well, guess I’m out of luck this time. Thanks anyway.”

Rey opened her mouth to say something, but I gave her a quick wave and jogged out. Her picture had been there, third from the top. I hadn’t wanted to put her on Rey’s radar — she had the bad habit of spreading rumors about the girls I liked.

Olivia Kaspen. Aivilo What a perfect little name, for a perfect little snob. I smiled all the way back to the dorms.

I looked for her everywhere. She didn’t go to the gym. She was never in the cafeteria or at any of our home games. I went back to the spot I first saw her and hung out outside of her dorm. Nothing. She was either a first class hermit or I’d imagined the whole thing. Olivia Kaspen. A cross between Snow White and The Evil Queen. I had to find her.

I wasn’t smiling a week later. I’d spotted her in the stands at one of our last games of the season. We’d made it to the playoffs and were leading the game by ten points. The minute I saw her, I was distracted. I kept glancing up into the stands where she was sitting, clutching a Styrofoam cup between her hands. One thing was clear — she wasn’t looking at me. I don’t know what possessed me to believe that I could impress her with my game play, but I tried. The visiting team went on a ten-nothing run. The game was tied. I stood at the free throw line, and to this day I don’t know what possessed me to pull the little stunt that cost us the game. I jogged over to my coach. Normally a stunt like that would have gotten me kicked off the team, but I happened to be the BMOC and it helped that he was a family friend.

“I can’t focus. I have to take care of something,” I told him.

“Caleb, you have to be f**king with me right now.”

“Coach,” I said quietly. “Give me two minutes.”

He narrowed his eyes and stared at me over his glasses. “Is this about that girl?”

My blood ran cold. My coach was an insightful guy, but-

“The one who’s missing?” he finished.

I stared at him blankly. Laura? We’d dated, but not seriously. I wondered if my parents had said something to him. My mother was friends with her mother. She had been enthusiastic when we’d started dating, but Laura was all looks and no personality. We had fizzled out almost immediately. Before I could correct him, he said, “Go. Hurry up.”

He called a time out and put the team in a huddle.

I took the stairs two at a time. The closer I got, the paler she got, and she was already pretty pale. When I crouched down next to her, her eyes were wide and she looked ready to bolt.

“Olivia,” I said. “Olivia Kaspen.”

She looked momentarily shocked. She composed herself quickly. Her eyes danced around my face before she leaned toward me and said, “Bravo, you found out my name.” Then in a lower voice, “What the hell are you doing?”

“You’re quite the mystery on campus,” I said, tracing the outline of her lips with my eyes. I’d never seen such sensual lips in all my life. How had it taken me this long to find those lips?

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