. #Chapter 45: Microscope Microcosm
After Enzo dropped me off, I went upstairs and went straight to bed.
That night, I had dreams about Enzo. In the dreams, he wasn’t just a human but a huge wolf with silver fur and red eyes. I sat on his back while he walked through the forest, my fingers tangled in his fur. Something about it felt comforting. —
When I woke up the next morning, I realized that I had missed my alarm!
I jumped out of bed, cursing, and threw on the first thing I could find in my dresser, combed my hair without even bothering to braid it, and brushed my teeth before running out of my dorm and flying down the stairs with my loose hair flowing behind me.
A few minutes later, I burst into class, completely out of breath..
The professor raised an eyebrow at me as several students turned around to see what the commotion was about.
“Sorry,” I muttered, squeezing my way through a row of desks to find at seat next to Jessica, who had saved me my usual spot. She glared up at me and moved her jacket out of the way so I could sit
“It’s not like you to be late,” she whispered while the professor continued giving his lecture. I took out my notebook and tucked my wild hair
behind my ears.
“I was up late,” I whispered back.
Jessica frowned at me. “I saw his motorcycle driving away. I thought you were done with him and interested in someone else?”
“Ladies, please,” the professor said annoyedly, folding his arms across his chest and facing us. “Please save your conversation for after class… Especially you, Miss Harper. You’ve
already missed enough this morning.”
“Sorry, professor,” I replied, averting my attention to my notebook.
Jessica and I headed toward the dining hall for lunch after class.
“Do you really think Lisa was on something?” Jessica asked after I explained what happened last night.
I shrugged my shoulders. “I don’t know. Sure seemed like it. Her pupils were like saucers.”
“Well, good riddance,” Jessica said. ” Maybe now she’ll quit bothering everybody.”
“Maybe,” I replied, although I couldn’t help but feel a little worried for Lisa. If she was on hard drugs, she was probably really struggling. Addiction is a bitch.
“Still,” Jessica said, looking over at me as we walked into the dining hall, “you should be careful about Enzo. You said yourself that it would be toxic between the two or you.
“I know,” I replied. We got in line at the sandwich shop. “I thought you were his biggest fan, though? It seems unlike you to say anything bad about him.”
Jessica shrugged. “He played with your feelings,” she replied. “Besides, I just… haven’t been that interested in guys lately.”
I raised an eyebrow, confused by my friend’s sudden change in demeanor. As long as I had known her, she had been boy crazy and was almost
constantly talking to a new guy. Why
the change of heart?
Jessica looked around while we waited in line, twirling a strand of blonde hair around her finger, then grinned and waved excitedly at someone. I turned and looked over to see that she was waving at Lori. Both of their faces were blushing.
Was Jessica interested in Lori?
It couldn’t be…
But still, I could hardly contain my smile.
After lunch, I had to go to work with Tiffany. I said goodbye to my friends, who seemed perfectly content with sitting alone together, and headed over to the health office as I downed the last of my coffee in a pathetic attempt to wake myself up after everything that happened the night
When I entered Tiffany’s office, she was sitting at her desk looking through some papers.
She looked up from her desk when I entered and smiled.
“Afternoon,” she said in her usual
sweet tone of voice. “Ready for another fun day?”
I nodded, hanging my bag and my jacket on one of the hooks in the back of the room.
“I’ll be leaving in a few minutes for a performance review with the dean,” she said, rubbing her eyes. She looked like she was up late the night before,
too “Think you’ll be okay in here without me if any students come in?”
“No problem,” I replied with a smile. By this point, I had been working here long enough to feel fairly comfortable with my tasks. Besides, when it came to waiting on students in the health office, the majority of what I would be doing was simply handing out condoms and cold medicine.
“Awesome,” Tiffany said, standing. ” If you need anything, you have my number.”
I nodded in response, and when Tiffany left, I sat down at the tall lab table to get some studying done while I was waiting for students.
A few minutes later, the door opened. I looked up from my work expecting to
see a student, but felt my face get hot
when James walked in instead. We hadn’t seen each other since our study session at the coffee shop, and by this point I had really begun to think that I scared him away with my wolf nonsense.
It seemed that James wasn’t scared away at all, however, when he came over to me with a big smile on his soft face.
“Long time no see,” he said, setting his bag down on the table. “I thought you got swept away by that typhoon.”
“Almost,” I replied, pushing my night with Enzo out of my mind the best I could.
“I’m actually glad you’re here,” James said. He walked over to a cabinet and pulled out a microscope and a baggy with slides in it, then came over to the table and set it up. “With the recent flu outbreak, I got curious and took some samples to look at under the microscope. You should take a look.
I’ve never seen anything like it.”
He turned the microscope toward me. I raised an eyebrow and peered in to look at the virus.
“What about it?” I said, pulling away from the microscope and looking up at James.
“You didn’t see it?” he said, his smile fading. He pulled the microscope to himself and looked in, muttering to himself as he fussed with the dials. ” No, I swear it was… What the… That’s odd…”
“What’s wrong?” I said, leaning over out of curiosity and accidentally brushing our shoulders together.
“I swear this was not an ordinary influenza sample,” he muttered, looking up from the microscope.
When he locked eyes with me, I realized now that our faces were incredibly close… Close enough to kiss.
My face turned beet red, and so did his. I pulled away quickly and cleared my throat, averting my gaze back to my notes.
“U-Um… Maybe you got the slides mixed up?” I said, trying to act nonchalant.
“Y-Yeah,” James replied. “Maybe.”
Suddenly, the door swung open and a sick student came hobbling in, holding her stomach. I let out a small sigh of relief now that I had an excuse to escape the awkward atmosphere and jumped down from my stool, walking over to her.
James and I didn’t get any alone time for the rest of my shift, what with the almost constant stream of sick students coming in. Before I knew it, my shift was over.
“Hey,” James’said just as I was about to leave with my things. “When are we gonna have that study date?”
My face turned red when I heard James refer to our study session as a date, and I stammered to come up with a reply.
“U-Um, I’ll let you know,” I said hurriedly, which resulted in a disappointed look from James.
This is all too much, I thought to myself as I scurried out of the health office with my heart racing. Truthfully, I liked both Enzo and James… How could I possibly choose?
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