AN: Hi everyone! I think I've done pretty well for a timeous update considering I'm back at Varsity (uni…remember the term it is used in the following chapter!) Plus my birthday was last week… I expect reviews as late birthday presents! Also, look forward to the next chapter soon… it's gonna be a good one! This chapter was actually going to be longer, but I wrote it all in one sitting so I'm tired! Thanks Cait for giving me a shove! I'll blame you for having done no readings!

Waffles for all of my wonderful reviewers: Cappy-Tan Burger (Leslie... you get gummy worms!), , Bella's Thorn, DeMarshmallow Mistress, cinderella xo, Marikamaroka, I Quoth Nevermore, Cait, The Midnights Sun, Evil Angel of DOOM, and beingmyself... mwa!

Chapter 10: Torture by Over-The-Hill Wind-Bags Waffling about Chaucer.

For the next few days Sarah found herself slowly getting used to Kyle's permanent presence, no matter how annoying he could be. At times she even found him reassuring… a constant in her strange new world of Varsity classes, Res food and eccentric professors.

There was some sort of unwritten rule between them… one that stated that they weren't to talk about the strangeness of their situation, they were to act as if everything was perfectly normal, and they were not under any circumstances allowed to talk about the how's and why's of their strange relationship. It seemed to work spectacularly well, Sarah being head of that school of thought that believed that if one could ignore a problem long and hard enough, it would go away. And perhaps in a way it did, for slowly the idea of Kyle being a problem completely fled her (although unconsciously) and he became a boy like any other boy, apart from the fact that he was constantly in her presence.

Sarah bought an ear piece meant for a mobile phone that she could attach to her ear when she went out in public and point to whenever she accidentally talked to him in front of others; as if to say 'I'm not crazy, I'm on the phone'. Kyle, who could control electronics in apparently a similar fashion as he controlled Sarah's senses, (although she wasn't quite sure as she was steadily obeying the unwritten rule) overcame his night-time boredom by playing computer games (with the sound turned off).

And so they gradually became accustomed to each other; to their strange version of life, and unconsciously made adaptations for each other and themselves… creating their own brand of normalcy. A week after Kyle had suddenly appeared in her bedroom, Sarah would have been greatly surprised had she thought to look back on the changes that a very short seven days had wrought on her life. Possibly unfortunately for her when one is living life one often doesn't see the forest for the trees.

Sarah sat in her English Literature class with her eyes drooping as she tried futilely to listen to an over-the-hill wind-bag waffling on about Chaucer. Kyle sat in the chair beside her with his feet propped up on the desk with a supremely bored look on his face. She often wondered if he made himself look bored, confused or irritable on purpose, or if he did it unconsciously or accidentally.

There was only one other person in their row. Apparently by this time the better part of the class had realized how pointless attending lectures with Prof. 'I-speak-drivel' was, and had accordingly taken it upon themselves to find more entertaining pastimes in his lecture slot. No doubt the majority of them were off even now acquiring skin cancer on beaches or lung cancer as they sat in a cloud of smoke making idle conversation with friends. She began to think they had the right idea… cancer was by far preferable to this slow death by torture disguised as a lecture.

The other guy in their row apparently shared her feelings, but not her unfortunate sense of propriety, and was therefore quite obviously unconscious and hadn't seemed to feel the need to hide that fact. She blushed just looking at him, wishing she could do the same and hating her conscience for holding her back.

She spaced out while staring at him (he was actually quite good looking; messy blonde hair, decent dress sense, strong chin, if she had had any sense she would have been checking him out), her mind wondered off into the realms of the imagination where she was sitting in a rose garden reading Jane Austen rather than on a hard plastic seat being subjected to Chaucer and 'Wind-Bag'. A contented smile managed to make its way onto her face as she day-dreamed, and she didn't notice the guy she was staring at finally coming back to the land of the living (and not-so-living).

'Unconscious dude' proceeded to stretch, yawn loudly and scratch his head unselfconsciously, all in an effort to get her attention. Eventually, when his arms were beginning to hurt a little from being held above his head so much, their movement finally attracted her attention. He winked at her, and she proceeded to turn a rather endearing shade of bright red in the space of a rather short few seconds.

Kyle perked up slightly and regarded the two with a certain amount of curiosity. Sarah had swiftly whipped her head around to face front and was now furiously scribbling down notes… on what he couldn't imagine because the lecturer had being saying the same thing in about a thousand different ways for the last ten minutes. The guy in question was watching her with interest, and had an almost predatory look in his eyes that Kyle was all too familiar with. He was interested, and he was making quite a production of playing cool.

The lecturer ended off (not soon enough in Kyle's opinion) and the few other people in the lecture theatre began to pack their untouched stationary back into their bags. Sarah however was still scribbling away furiously… apparently she hadn't noticed that the lecture was over, which served to confirm Kyle's suspicion that she had been concentrating on looking busy rather than on the lecture. Kyle cleared his throat loudly and Sarah's head snapped up.

Her brow furrowed and she whispered 'what!' out of the corner of her mouth.

"The lecture's over you know." He informed her.

"I knew that," She muttered into her pad of paper, her face, which had finally faded to a reddish-pink, giving her a slightly sun-burnt look, flamed up again, and he couldn't help the amused smile he wore. As Sarah hastily packed her things away in a poor attempt to compensate for her obliviousness, the guy who was near to them made a production of putting his bag on his shoulder (since as he hadn't taken out anything to begin with, there was nothing to pack away slowly… how he had managed to delay for as long as he had was anyone's guess, but the man made lifting a bag an art form.)

Sarah slung her bag carelessly over her shoulder, and watched her feet as she tried to get past 'sleeping guy'. He was watching her slyly and purposefully got in her way and then appeared apologetic as if it had been an accident. She was forced to look up at him, red-faced, and then bumped her bag against the desk and watched helplessly as her books, which had been haphazardly packed, spilled out onto the floor. She looked so dismayed that Kyle almost felt sorry for her. 'Sleeping guy' on the other hand looked positively gleeful and took the opportunity to play knight in shining armor.

Once all the books had been retrieved from the floor, 'sleeping dude' introduced himself as Steven, and swiftly swept Sarah into a conversation before she had even realized what had happened to her. Kyle had to hand it to the guy, he had skill. He chalked the strange feeling in the pit of his stomach up to the after-effects of torture induced by Sarah's classes and continued to watch Sarah and Steven interact without interference as they walked out into the sunshine and then slowly along the sidewalk.

"I don't recognize you from that class, have you been skipping all term?" She asked uncertainly. He laughed, and her face went a few shades redder and took on a small embarrassed smile.

"Not exactly," He replied still chuckling quietly, "I actually saw an ex-girlfriend I didn't want to deal with, she was a bit nutters that one, so I ducked into the nearest room and stumbled across you."

Kyle snorted slightly at Steven's description of his ex… if it was normal he was looking for, the guy was seriously barking up the wrong tree!

"Oh… well that would explain it." Sarah replied. It was perfectly obvious how unsure she was of herself. He would bet all his X-box games that she was looking for the first opportunity to flee. Steven however was as sticky as fly paper, he had her trapped and wasn't going to let her get away if he could help it. Much awkward conversation later he was asking her to the movies. Sarah was clearly Gob-smacked.

"Um… Aaaah, I mean when would you want to…? I'm not sure if I could… I've got a lot of work and…." She stuttered out.

"There's this old cinema down in Obs that shows ancient movies for almost nothing, and you get free popcorn too. I can't really remember what they're showing but a friend of mine was saying that they're having an awesome movie marathon tonight which could be fun." Steven cut in smoothly, somehow managing to make his suggestion sound like the most attractive proposal ever made. Sarah didn't seem all that impressed though because she was still wearing her deer-in-the-headlights look.

"Go." Kyle commanded authoritatively. "You need to get out more! You need to live and have fun! This guy doesn't seem all that bad. Think of it as a way of expanding your horizons… all you ever do is go to class and sit around in your room. You need to start building up some kind of social life!"

Sarah ground her teeth and wished she tell him to shove his useless opinions up his butt, but as the vulgar language would have shocked her mother to her back teeth, and as she was at present in company, she decided that the comment wasn't particularly appropriate and was forced to grin and bear the unwanted advice.

Steven seemed to sense her hesitation and quickly tried to get himself onto more secure footing.

"How about you give me your number, and I'll give you a call later and you can tell me if you want to come. Then you can have some time to think about it, and if you do want to come, I'll come pick you up at around seven thirty-ish." He said.

Sarah seemed to like the idea of giving him her number and address even less than she liked the idea of going on a date with him. Kyle could read the dismay clearly on her face, though he ignored the small feeling of triumph it evoked.

"Um… no, don't worry, you know what? The movie marathon sounds really great! You can just tell me where it is, and I'll meet you there just before eight… I'm pretty close to Obs anyhow!" She said, in a desperate attempt to avoid the exchange of personal details. Steven brightened in his small victory.

"Great!" He exclaimed. And started rambling off details and street names that Kyle tuned out as he tried to figure out exactly where the new hostility to the guy standing in front of Sarah came from.

At seven o'clock that night Sarah stood in front of her cupboard with her hair twisted up in a towel and another towel wrapped around her body. The bed and floor were strewn with discarded garments, and Kyle looked on in amusement as she inspected what seemed like the millionth top.

"You are no help at all!" She snapped at him in frustration. "What the hell am I supposed to wear to this… what is it exactly? Is it a date? I don't know… that complete jerk didn't exactly make it clear! I hate boys! All they do is complicate everything! And they don't even think to tell you about the dress code of the place they're taking you! They're so bloody inconsiderate!" She ranted. Kyle thought it best to head her off before she talked herself out of going… though somehow the thought of her standing Steven up was not displeasing to him.

"I think that beaded thing is quite nice." He told her, referring to a beaded blue camisole that had been tossed onto the bed. "You could wear it with jeans and it would be pretty much okay for anywhere."

"Oh…" She said, slightly shocked both at being interrupted and at the fact that he had given advice. "Um… okay." And then she proceeded to dress in the suggested outfit and scrutinize her appearance in the mirror. She appeared to find it adequate, but she turned around for his opinion.

She looked beautiful. How he had never really noticed it before now seemed ludicrous. She wasn't classically stunning, or even what was termed 'hot', but when you took the time to look at her, there was just something about her that left you in awe. It was the way her blue eyes sparkled and shone, emphasized by her camisole and framed by her still damp and therefore extra dark eyelashes. It was in how her pale skin was slightly flushed from the heat and from darting around the room. It was in how she looked down self-consciously and fiddled with the belt loops of her jeans, nervously awaiting his opinion. It was in how her purple-painted toes turned slightly in towards each other, and the small bits of dark wet hair that had escaped from their binding and whispered against her neck and how there was a tiny nervous smile lingering in one corner of her mouth.

But he couldn't say that… because even thinking it made him feel like a moron, so instead he said:

"You look great." And she could see he was being honest, and he could tell she believed him, and she flashed him that smile… the same smile he'd seen after he'd beaten up Elliot Samuels for her. It was her full wattage, punch-in-the-stomach smile that completely transformed her face and for a moment made you feel like something truly fantastic because someone was smiling a smile like that at you.

Then she turned around and let her wet hair tumble loose down her back as she shoved her feet into a pair of pumps. In a matter of minutes she had twisted her hair up into a bun, waved a mascara wand over her lashes and quickly dashed on a little lip balm before grabbing her bag and heading for the door.

The walk to the movie theatre was brisk and silent, and Sarah clung to her purse with white fingers and unconsciously sidled up closer to Kyle at the sight of other people walking near her… it was still light but her mother had instilled a healthy paranoia in her.

Just before they reached the movie theatre Sarah stopped unexpectedly and turned to Kyle.

"I need you to go invisible." She told him.

"What do you mean you need me to go invisible… why?" He asked.

"Kyle… this is my first date in a long time! In fact, you were my last date, and I don't think that I can do this if I have my ex-boyfriend hovering over my shoulder… that would just be seriously weird."

"And every day life with me isn't?" He asked, he wasn't quite sure why he was resisting the idea but he sure as hell didn't like it, and he wasn't about to question his motives.

"Kyle… you have never had to been forced to take an ex on a date with you, please don't ask me to do the same." Sarah pleaded.

"Fine." Kyle said defeated, and then abruptly disappeared.

"You know I'm not doing this to be mean or anything." She said into thin air. No response came, and Sarah was left standing in the middle of the street suddenly feeling very much alone. She shivered as the wind blew onto her, raising goose bumps on her skin, and walked quickly down the street towards the corner that would lead her to the bright lights of the theatre.

AN: Review! I promise to reply, and it was my birthday last week, so think of it as a late birthday present!