The second chapter come see what happens after the events in the Library!
Kallee reached over for her phone to silence the timer going off. Sitting up she smiled feeling refreshed after her nap. It was now ten to 9, just under a half hour until she could talk to Laughlan. She felt her nerves starting to rise. Almost like a little kid waiting for Christmas. She decided that she needed to do something to keep herself busy. So she walked to the closet picking out a nightgown then she walked to the bathroom to take a quick shower while she waited.
20 minutes later Kallee walked out of the bathroom dressed in a green and blue paisley nightgown that went down to her knees. She tossed her dirty clothes into her room without bothering to put them away. She walked down the hall to the living room. There was a sliding glass door that opened to a small balcony that faced the mountains like her window. It was one of the other spots in the house where she felt comfortable. She had placed a wooden gliding chair on it shortly after moving in, Kallee settled herself in the chair letting her feet rest on the bottom of the railing.
She let her feet push her slightly sending the chair rocking back and forth. Her phone rested in her lap the screen facing her so she could check the time easily. The movement of the chair calmed her nerves that wouldn’t seem to quit earlier. The cool air of the evening was refreshing and in the air was the scent of fall. The sun had gone down already so she couldn’t see the red and gold on the mountain trees. She sat like that for a few moments just taking in the evening around her. Picking up her phone she saw that it was now 9:13. Opening her text messaging app she sent Laughlan a quick text.
Kallee: Hey are you still okay to talk?
Laughlan: Yeah totally! Give me just a moment and I will call you okay?
Laughlan went to his bedroom shutting the door behind him. He sat down in his desk chair pushing it away from his desk so it was more in the middle of the room giving him space to spin if he wanted to. He shared his apartment with one other person, a friend from high school. It was a small 2 bedroom place about a mile away from campus. Thankfully James was gone for the evening so he didn’t have to worry about keeping his voice down when he called Kallie. He picked up the phone and called her. It rang twice before she answered
“Hello, this is Kallee”
“Hey, Kallee it’s Laughlan how are you?”
“I am doing okay, better than before but that is mostly because I am not thinking about it right now.”
“I see, well do you want to talk about it? Or would you rather just spend some time getting to know each other?”
“Actually both if that’s okay?”
“Yeah, that is fine where do you want to start?”
“I guess I could start by telling you why I was upset. You see my mom passed away about 7 years ago in a car accident. So now it’s just me and my dad. The past 6 Christmases he has had to work leaving me with unknown relatives for company. This year when he dropped me off he promised that he would take Christmas off so we could be together. Only today he told me that he had to work Christmas if he wanted to get a promotion. And well I guess that was the last straw and I got really upset.” She stopped there letting that sink in.
“Wow, I am sorry that is really tough but I am sure that everything will work out right?” He offered.
“Maybe, but I don’t really want to think about it. I will deal with it later.” Kallee replied
“Okay, I understand that. Why don’t we talk about something else.” Laughlan suggested.
“I like this plan and I know exactly what our next topic is” there was a smile on Kallee’s face she wanted to see what Laughlan’s reply to her vague hinting would be.
Laughlan hesitated to respond because he was pretty sure he knew what was coming. Part of him really wanted to have this conversation with her and the other part would have done anything to avoid it. He spun his chair preparing himself to answer the question he knew was coming “Oh really and what would that topic be?” Kallee could hear his smile as he spoke which told her he knew exactly where this was headed. That info gave her the confidence to reply with her own witty comment.
“Hmmm... Well, let’s see it has to do with a situation I found myself in earlier today. You wouldn’t happen to know anything about that would you?” Kallee’s voice was laced with a sweet and innocent tone but Laughlan heard the humor that came with it.
“I don’t know. You wouldn’t happen to be talking about that weirdo you ran into at the library would you?” Laughlan was teasing her just as much as she was teasing him. It seemed they both wanted to discuss the events of earlier.
“Actually that's exactly what I was talking about. So let’s talk about the elephant in the room. Why? What in the world could have possibly possessed you to do something so insane? And what was my problem I mean honestly I’m a big fan of stranger danger and here I am snuggling up to some guy I don’t know?” Laughlan waited for her to finish wanting her to get it all out in the open. There was a soft sigh on the other end of his phone. He could tell that she was as bothered by the events at the library just as much as he was. Silence fell between the two of them, She was waiting for him to respond and he was trying to figure out how to answer.
Finally breaking the silence came his reply of “Honestly I don’t know why Kallee. All I know is I was drawn to you, I didn’t like the fact that you were hurting and I wanted to make it stop.” he paused not knowing how to continue. Wanting nothing more than anything for her to understand that it wasn’t something he’d have done normally. “It was like I wasn’t myself, suddenly I saw you sitting there looking devastated and my heart just took over wanting to take away your pain.” he trailed off. Laughlan could sense her mulling it all over in her mind. They fell into silence once more.
This time it was Kallee’s turn to break the silence with her reply. “You caught me so off guard. There I was falling down a dark pit and then *Bam* out of nowhere was a branch to grab hold of in the form of a friend.” she was being careful with her words she didn’t want to let on to just how attractive she found him just yet. After a breath, she continued “Then there were your eyes, it felt like they were burning holes in me, in a good way. Like you could see every inch of my soul. At that point, I decided to throw all caution to the wind and accept your offer.”
“Yeah, it was definitely the craziest thing I've done in a long time. So the way I see it now we have two ways we can look at this. The first is we can equate it to a similar situation you’d find a hooker in and just walk away. Which I am not a fan of at all or the other option is we can look at it as an opportunity to become friends.”
“Hmm... I am not a fan of the first one either. All I know for sure is that I want to hang out with you as friends and maybe even more someday.” Blurted Kallee, surprising both of them. Laughlan recovered quickly, quipping back with
“Now that is an idea I can get behind!” They both laughed at that. Laughlans’ heart was racing, this chance encounter in the library was turning out to be a good thing. “so....” he continued “When are you free next so we can start on this maybe even more someday?”
“Saturday night.” Kallee stated, “But, let’s start with friendship first okay?”
“Alright if you insist! Miss party pooper!”
“Hey, you don’t know I am a party pooper I’m a lot of fun when I want to be!” Her voice was laced with indignation. Which just made Laughlan laugh.
“You are right I guess I will have to reserve that judgment for later. Would you be interested in going Mini-golfing with me on Saturday around 6:30? We could get a bite to eat beforehand if you wanted.”
“That sounds a little like a date to me but perhaps if you let me pay for myself I would be okay with that.”
“Now you truly are being a party pooper, But I want to spend time with you so I shall accept your terms!”
“Oh good, cause I am looking forward to whooping your butt at mini-golf” Kallee was biting her tongue after her last comment, She nearly said kicking your good looking butt. Which would have caused an uproar.
“Well, now that sounds like a challenge!”
“Ugh... It is late and I honestly don’t want to go to bed Laughlan!”
“And why ever not, miss Kallee?”
“It is complicated” was all she could get out not wanting to think about the nightmares that often plagued her at night. They had started shortly after her mom had passed away and nothing she had tried during all those years had help.
“That is a cop-out if ever I heard one. Look I understand if you don’t want to tell me but remember I’m a good listener and I can’t stand to see you in pain. So please tell me what's going on.” Laughlan’s voice was soothing and full of a longing she couldn’t understand. She let out a soft sigh, it couldn’t hurt to tell him. After all, she hadn’t really told anyone about the nightmares. Perhaps telling him would help them go away.
“You’re right, it's just that I haven’t really told anyone about it.”
“That’s okay, I won’t push you...” He was cut off as she interrupted him.
“No, no, I want to tell you, I’m just not sure how to explain it.”
“I find that starting at the beginning is often the easiest way” offered Laughlan.
“Perhaps, you see a few months after my mother died I started to have awful nightmares. I would find myself waking up in the middle of the night screaming or crying without any recollection of why. I never remember the nightmares, I just know I have them. I’ve managed to keep it secret from people cause I learned to leave music playing all night to cover any noise I make. It doesn’t happen all the time. But I find myself dreading sleep more and more each time it does.” She let out a sigh at that point, which qued Laughlan to the fact that she was done explaining.
“I see... That must be very difficult. I am very sorry to hear that. I am guessing that you have tried all sorts of remedies with no success right?”
“Yeah, and none of them have helped me. So now I find myself dreading sleep and staying up as long as I can until my body finally just crashes.”
“How about I stay up with you until you crash tonight? At least then you won’t be alone and thinking about it? We can ask each other silly getting to know you questions to entertain ourselves.”
“That would be nice, Laughlan. You know you are much too kind for my own good.”
“And whatever do you mean by that?”
“That if I am not careful I might find myself attracted to you,” she admitted. Getting up she walked back through her apartment throwing herself on to her bed.
“And is that a bad thing?” He was pushing his luck asking her such a thing but he found that he too was at risk of falling for her.
“Perhaps, we shall just have to wait and see won't we?”
“Indeed we will. Now Miss Kallee, are you ready for me to talk your ear off until you're so tired you won't wake up until morning?” she let out a giggle.
“Yes, but first tell me, what is with the Miss Kallee?”
“It was that or Mo Chridhe a nickname I intend to give you when we get closer to that ‘maybe even more someday’ but we can go with Kall for the time being if you’d prefer.”
“Kall it is.” was all she could manage to get out. She curled herself up letting her eyes close as she and Laughlan talked.
“Alright, for now, Kall it shall be. So Kall, tell me if you could meet anyone in the world who would it be and why?” he began his promised silly getting to know you questions to entertain them till she fell asleep. They had already been on the phone for an hour at this point and he settled into his own bed ready for another hour. He liked the fact that his voice would be the last thing she would hear before falling asleep.
“I would want to meet David Tennant. I think he is good looking and I enjoy his Scottish accent!” Kallee answered.
Their conversation was exactly what Laughlan said it would be, a bunch of silly questions. It went on like that for another 40 minutes both of them taking turns asking questions. It was nearing 11 and Laughlan started to hear Kallee’s voice grow sleepy. He found it super cute the longer they had talked the bolder she had become.
“Okay Blondy” which is what she had started calling him as they talked. “Tell me what do you prefer Hugging or kissing?” her words came slowly and softly. She was half asleep, Laughlan knew that it was time to let his new friend fall asleep. But first, he had to answer her question.
“That is a tricky one. I enjoy hugs, especially the long kind where the hug becomes more of a conversation without words. But on the other hand, kissing is a very enjoyable activity of its own. I don’t know if I can pick one at the moment perhaps on Saturday we can experiment and help me make up my mind” he teased, although he hoped to experience her kiss sooner rather than later.
“I see, you think we’ll have time for that after I’ve whooped you at mini golf?” it took her a moment to form that sentence in her mind before she managed to somehow get it out. She was half asleep now but didn’t want the conversation to end.
“I think I can manage to find some time for it yes. But we can talk about that another time. Right now I think it's time I let you fall asleep Kall.”
“Laughlan, please don’t go yet. I'm almost asleep just... don’t... hang... Up.. yet....please.” He knew then that she wanted him to stay on the phone with her until after she was asleep.
“Of course, Mo Chridhe, I shall not hang up until you are asleep.” Laughlan started to hum softly so she would know he was still there while she drifted off. It was the melody of the song he’d been working on earlier, it worked well as a lullaby. A few minutes later he could hear the change in her breathing and was pretty sure she was sleeping now. Softly he whispered “goodnight Mo Chridhe, sweetest of dreams.” Hanging up his phone he plugged it in and then he too drifted off to sleep thinking of Kallee and the upcoming mini-golf competition between them.
Kallee woke to the sound of her alarm going off. It took her a moment to figure out why her phone was on her bed instead of her nightstand. Then she remembered how Laughlan had stayed up with her. She smiled as she recalled his humming. Getting out of bed she began her morning routine. Walking to her closet she picked out a simple tee and a paisley patterned pair of cotton pants Once she had dressed for the day she went to the Kitchen to make her breakfast.
As she ate she found her mind drifting back to her conversation with Laughlan the night before. She groaned putting her head in her hands. ‘Which do you prefer hugging or kissing?’ It was a silly flirty question and she was finding it hard to believe she’d asked him that. Her cheeks turned red as his answer came floating back to her. Boy were they going to be in trouble when Saturday finally came around. She put her dishes in the dishwasher before heading back to her room to grab her stuff for school.
Kallee arrived at her first class of the day which was Music theory 101. It was one of the four music classes she shared with Laughlan. Walking inside the classroom she noticed that she found herself looking for him. It didn’t take long to find the tall blonde, and to her surprise, he was sitting next to the seat she usually sat in. With a smile, she quickly walked over to him sitting down.
“Well, Good morning Blondy, and what brings you to this neck of the classroom?” they had a good 5 minutes until class began.
“I thought the view would be better from here.”
“And so you figured the professor would just let you change seats?”
“Kallee come on this is college most professors don’t care where you sit as long as you show up.” she pulled out her textbook and workbook putting them on her desk along with her favorite pen. She turned so she was facing him now.
“Yeah, I guess you are right. So tell me, Blondy, how was your night?”
“It was really good, I spent all night on the phone with this amazing girl.”
“Amazing really? What makes her so amazing?”
“Now, what kind of gentlemen would I be if I told you that?” He teased. She was about to reply when the professor walked in bringing all conversation to a halt.
Kallee found it hard to concentrate on the lesson. She found herself stealing glances at Laughlan throughout the class. Kallee glanced over Laughlan as the professor dismissed them. His eyes met her with a charming smile. He winked causing her heart to skip a beat, She was sure her knees wouldn’t hold her if she tried to stand up. Suddenly there was a hand on the strap of her bag and it was being pulled away from her.
“What’s your next class? I’ll walk you there.” She was full of surprise as he put her bag on the opposite shoulder of his own. ‘Apparently, he plans to carry my bag for me’ she thought.
“Umm... Can I have my bag back?” Kallee only half fought him finding it wonderfully charming that he wanted to carry her bag for her.
“Sure just as soon as we get to where you are going next.”
“Don’t you have somewhere you need to be? Other than walking me places?”
“Actually, no I have the next hour off before my history class. So the only place I need to be is next to you.” Kallee sighed seeing that there was no way around it. She was delighted for an excuse to spend more time with him.
“Well, in that case, I have private voice lessons next. They start in ten minutes over in the 500 hall here in the music building.” Laughlan came to stand next to her.
“Alright Kall, Let's get going.” Laughlan took her hand, Smiling as he heard he let out a gasp. She didn’t pull away so he started to walk off towards her next lesson. Kallee was floating on air, here she was walking hand in hand with the most stunning guy she’d ever met.
They walked in a very comfortable silence both of them just enjoying the others company. All too soon they reached Kaylee's next class. Laughlan stopped a few feet from the door. The hall was pretty empty as this was where all the professors had their offices. Laughlan took her bag and put it over her head setting it on her shoulder. Kallee sighed, something she found she was doing a lot since meeting Laughlan. Strong arms wrapped around her pulling her into a hug. They stood hugging for a few moments before he leaned his lips close to her ears.
“I will call you tonight” then throwing all caution to the wind added “Mo Chridhe” Just as quickly as it started it ended as Laughlan walking speedily away from her, leaving her to her studies. It was all Kallee could do to push Laughlan from her mind. She had to focus on her schooling right now. She let out one last sigh before walking into her voice professor's office.