Home > Easy (Contours of the Heart #1)(28)

Easy (Contours of the Heart #1)(28)
Author: Tammara Webber

“Jacqueline, how can you—of course I believe you! What kind of question is that?” She glared at me, insulted. “And by the way, why the hell didn’t you tell me this before now? Because you didn’t think I’d believe you?” Her lip quivered, transforming her expression from offended to injured.

“Chaz and Buck are best friends, and I thought I could just… avoid him…”

“Jacqueline, this is exactly the sort of stuff women need to share with each other! I don’t give a shit if he was drunk—”

“There’s more.”

She sat, staring and silent.

“Last night, he caught me in the stairwell.” Erin’s eyes grew round and I shook my head. “Nothing happened. I tricked him into coming upstairs by saying we could go to my room. When we got into the hallway, with other people around, I told him to leave.” I covered my face with my hands and choked out the rest. “He made it sound like we’d done it in the stairwell. Olivia heard him—”

“I get the picture,” Erin said, grabbing my hands. “That gossipy whore has no right to spread rumors about anyone. I don’t care about her. But be honest with me, J. Did he hurt you? Did he?” Her eyes flashed.

I shook my head. “He just scared me.”

She sighed, her forehead creased in thought, and then she straightened. “Wait. So that lying bastard ran into Lucas’s fists multiple times, not a couple of homeless thugs?”


The hurt crept across her face—I could see it in her eyes. “Why didn’t you tell me?”

My shoulders slid up and down, almost imperceptibly. “I don’t know. I’m sorry.”

Her answer was to put her arms around me. “And Lucas? You knew him before all of this?”

I leaned against her, tucked my head under her chin. “No. I’d never seen him before that night. Our econ class is huge, and it’s not like I was looking around at other guys. I had Kennedy.” My hands flipped palm up on my lap. “Or, I thought I did.”

Erin’s arms tightened. “Of course you did.”

Chapter 10

“Do you go to the tutoring sessions? I’ve only been a couple of times, but I don’t remember seeing you there.” Benji’s voice snapped my attention from Lucas.


He chuckled as I shoved my econ text into the backpack at my feet, embarrassed at having been caught sneaking a glance at Lucas. Again.

“Tutoring sessions? I wish I could, but I have another class at the same time. We’ve emailed, though—I needed help catching up, after my two-week hiatus from sanity.”

Suddenly I realized—if Benji had attended the tutoring sessions, that meant he had seen Landon. I’d also deduced, from a few deliberately transparent comments, that Benji was g*y. So he might not be opposed to answering questions such as Exactly how hot is the econ tutor?

“So you’ve been to a couple of sessions, huh?”

He nodded, and I decided to start with something way more fundamental.

“Is there any chance the tutor is, you know, g*y?” I held my breath, waiting for his answer.

“What, like I hand out a survey?” He laughed when I blinked, worried I’d just offended him. “I’m just messing with ya. I’m pretty sure he doesn’t play for my team. Though if he did, he’d be a little out of my league.” He sucked in and patted his stomach, which was made somewhat flat by his efforts. “Nothing a couple of weeks at the gym and giving up bread for the weekend wouldn’t take care of.”

I rolled my eyes. “Shut up.”

He sighed. “I love being a guy. Need to lose five pounds? Go without ketchup for a couple of weeks. Problem. Solved.”

We shouldered our backpacks and trudged up the stairs. “I really hate you right now.”

He laughed, more so when my eyes scanned the space between Lucas’s seat and the door. He was gone. “So, you’re trading emails and intense do-me stares in class. I’m guessing you aren’t the only girl—or guy—in Heller’s class who thinks the tutor’s hot like a spicy tamale—but you may be the only one where the feeling is mutual.”

I heard his teasing words, but nothing registered after I made the connection that had been right in from of me. “Lucas… is the tutor?”

Benji halted with me, both of us buffeted by people parting around us. “I didn’t know his name, but yeah—holy shit.” He dragged me from the heavy flow of foot traffic. “You didn’t know he was the tutor?” He smiled. “I guess you’ll be going to the sessions now, huh? I mean, technically, you’re off-limits, but you aren’t the only one in that staring game or I wouldn’t tease you.” He leaned his face down and looked into my eyes. “Jacqueline? What the hell?”

I considered the emails he wrote to me as Landon, and Lucas’s stares, his texts… and most notably, the sketching and makeout session five days ago. After which he hadn’t texted. Or emailed. Or told me he was Landon!

“I didn’t know.” Like I needed one more damned thing to make me feel like an utter idiot.

“Hello, Ms. Obvious, I sorta deduced that from your dazed and confused expression. Maybe he thought you knew?”

I shook my head. “He knew I didn’t know.” I frowned. “And what do you mean, that I’m off-limits?”

He lifted one shoulder. “My roommate tutored freshman chemistry. Tutors have to attend the class they’re doing sessions for, but they aren’t allowed to, you know, fraternize with those students. Conflict of interest. Not as big of a deal as GTAs or professors—who are advised against hooking up with any student at all. Still, it’s not like it doesn’t happen. We’re all human.”

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