Dangerously Damaged (Addicted To You, Book One)
Author:Covington, Lucy

 

Here is the part where I explain my experience with the opposite sex. Contrary to popular belief, I was not woefully ignorant when it came to boys.

 

I was ignorant, but not woefully so. I’d had a boyfriend – Ian Marlowe, who I dated sophomore year for about three months. He went to a different school, so the only time I really got to see him was when our parents agreed to drive us somewhere. We would meet at the mall a lot, where we’d make out in the dark movie theatre and he’d try to get his hand up my shirt.

 

Then there was my date to the prom, a guy named Steven McGruder who I knew from math club. We were supposed to be going just as friends, but he kissed me at the end of the night. I tried not to think about it too much, because even though Steven was cute, he wasn’t a good kisser. His tongue was like sandpaper, and his lips were too soft.

 

And of course I’d played spin the bottle a couple of times at various parties. Well, if you can call trips away with the debate team parties.

 

Anyway, the bottom line was I didn’t know what to make of the note Justin left, or the things that I was feeling.

 

I knew I should be upset. After all, Justin had already gotten me into trouble with my RA, and then apparently thought it would be okay to sneak back into my dorm in the middle of the night and slide a note under my door. (Who did something like that? And how had he gotten in here anyway?) He didn’t leave a phone number, or an email address, or a way to text him.

 

He just slid this note under my door and what? Now I was supposed to wait for him to come back into my life, to just show up whenever he wanted? It was insulting.

 

Another part of me was extremely excited at the prospect of seeing him again.

 

Last night I thought there was no way, that he’d left my life forever. But now that there was a chance he might be back….I was surprised to find that I was smiling.

 

And I hated myself for it.

 

But before I could decide just how much I hated myself, there was a sound of a key turning in a lock, and then the door to my room went flying open.

 

A girl stood in the hallway. She had long curly blonde hair and she was dressed in a pair of grey leggings, a fuchsia shirt with a black leather vest over it, and three or four long silver necklaces. A huge black hobo bag was slung over one shoulder.

 

“Hello,” she said. “I’m Lola.”

 

“Oh,” I said dumbly. I had no idea who Lola was, or how she had a key to my room.

 

“Otherwise known as Rachel Flowers,” she said. She dropped her bag onto the floor. “I’m experimenting with names.”

 

I was completely confused. This person standing in front of me was my roommate? “I didn’t … I wasn’t expecting you until later.” I grabbed a hoodie off the back of my chair and slid it on, suddenly aware that I was wearing only a tank top and a thin pair of pajama pants. “You’re experimenting with names?” I repeated.

 

“Yes. I think names are extremely important. Your name controls almost everything in your life, from the way you’re perceived to what jobs you get.”

 

“I never really thought about it.”

 

“You should.” She frowned. “Although I don’t think Lola is the way to go. I didn’t like your reaction.”

 

I wasn’t sure I’d had a reaction, and part of me wanted to ask her about it, but the other part felt that if I did, it would lead to a long conversation that I wasn’t sure I wanted to take part in.

 

“I thought you weren’t coming until later,” I said.

 

“Yeah, well, my plans changed.” She didn’t offer any more information, just walked into the room and look around.

 

“I, um, took the bed by the window. I hope you don’t mind. We can always switch if you want.”

 

“No, that’s okay. I don’t like sleeping by the window. I had a bad experience once with a tornado.”

 

“Oh.” I was starting to panic a little. My roommate obviously had a screw loose.

 

I didn’t even know what this conversation was about anymore, much less how to add to it.

 

“Where’s your stuff?”

 

“My parents are going to bring it by later. They’re late sleepers. But not me, I love the morning dew.”

 

I tried to remember if I’d put anything on my roommate questionnaire about whether or not I was a morning person. “That’s good,” I said. “It’s nice to get an early start on the day.”

 

“Mmmm.” She was over by the closets now, and she opened mine and ran her hand over my clothes. “You have a lot of black.”

 

“Yeah. The other one’s yours,” I pointed out helpfully.

 

She crossed the room, and as she did, she spotted Justin’s note, which I’d left on the desk. Immediately, I regretted leaving it out in the open like that. But how could I have possibly known that my insane roommate would barge in and start looking at all of my personal property?

 

Rachel picked up the piece of paper. “I’ll make it up to you,” she read out loud.

 

She turned to me. “What’s this?”

 

“Nothing.” I reached out and tried to grab it out of her hand, but she held it out of my reach.