Focus (Page 49)

I opened the freezer, glad to find some frozen blueberries.

“You like blueberry pancakes, too?” He turned from the stove.

“Love them.”

After stuffing ourselves with blueberry pancakes, we packed up and got back in the car. The ride home was pleasant enough, but it went too quickly. I wasn’t ready to face my friends at school, or worse, Levi’s parents.

He pulled up by my dorm. “Thanks for an amazing time, Al.”

“Thank you.”

He leaned over to kiss me. “I’ll be back to get you at seven.”

“You’ll bring my car back to the hotel?”

“After I clean it.”

“You better.” I moved to open my door.

“Al?”

I turned back to look at him.

“Pack whatever you need for tonight and tomorrow. I want you staying at my place.”

I hesitated for a moment. I wanted to spend another night with him, but I also wanted to make sure I got to catch up with my friends. I couldn’t decide. “Maybe.” I got out.

I took two steps away from the car before he caught up with me. I hadn’t expected him to get out. He backed me up so I was leaning against the car. “No maybe. Yes. You can’t just cut me off.”

I laughed. “You can handle it. I’ll think about it.”

“Pack a bag, Al, or don’t complain to me when you have to use my toothbrush.”

I made a face. “I’ll see you later.”

“Aren’t you forgetting something?”

“What?”

He opened the tailgate and pulled out my bag.

“Oh yeah,” I reached for the suitcase.

He pulled it away. “Like I’m going to make you carry it.”

I shrugged. “Suit yourself.”

I used my ID to swipe into the dorm and Levi followed me up the steps. I unlocked my door, not surprised to find Hailey studying on her bed. She rarely used her desk anymore.

“Hey!” She got up and hugged me. “How was the trip?”

“Good.” I smiled.

“Only good?” Levi moved into the room.

I glared at him.

“I guess I can just ask you, Levi. How was the trip?”

“Fantastic. Allie and I got to spend a lot of quality time together.”

“I bet.” Hailey gave me a knowing look.

“See you at seven.” Levi gave me a kiss before walking out.

“Bye.” I waved.

“What’s at seven?”

“Dinner with the Laurents.” I pulled off my sweatshirt, hanging it up in my closet.

“Ohh, fancy.”

“Shut up.”

“So tell me, what happened?”

I sat down on my bed facing her. “A lot.”

“Can you be more specific than that?”

I picked up a heart shaped pillow that Anne had left at some point. “We’re officially back together.”

“No wonder he looked like a kid in a candy store.”

“Yeah, well, it was bound to happen, right?”

She closed her book, no longer even pretending she was going back to it. “So was it as good as you remembered?”

“Better.”

“Good thing Levi left, or you’d be giving him even more of an ego.”

“Oh, don’t worry, that’s already happened.”

“You’re back!” Our door flung open and Anne ran in, followed by Tiffany, who gave me an apologetic look.

“Yeah, I’ve been back a whole ten minutes now.”

Anne bent down and hugged me. “It’s been too quiet without you.”

I laughed. “It’s nice to know I was missed.”

“Oh my god, you finally did it.” Anne grinned as she sat down next to me on my bed.

“What? Am I wearing an ‘I had sex’ sign or something?”

“It’s the glow. The ‘I spent the last few days shacked up with the sexy guy I’ve been holding back on’ glow.”

Hailey snickered. “I don’t think they spent the whole time in bed.”

“It was a business trip, right?” Tiffany asked, sitting on Hailey’s chair.

“Yes, an important business trip Levi needed her company on.” Anne rolled her eyes.

“Fine, don’t believe me.”

“Oh, I do, but I don’t think Levi cared about the business.”

“He did. It was the most responsibility his dad has ever given him.”

“You know you can tell us about it if you want, Allie. We already know who he is.” Tiffany smiled.

Sometimes I forgot they were in on the secret, but I still didn’t know how much to tell them. I looked to Hailey to get her take. She nodded.

“He had to preside over a paranormal court.”

Anne took a sip from the pink cup she always seemed to carry around with her. “That sounds so formal.”

“It was. It was fun at first, but I actually fell asleep.”

“Seriously? You fell asleep?” Hailey asked.

“Yeah, Levi didn’t seem to care though.”

Hailey stretched out on her bed. “I would have paid to see that.”

“Thanks, I appreciate it.”

“Come on, you fell asleep at court, that’s pretty bad.”

I leaned back on my elbows. “It was seven hours, and all I could do was sit there.”

“Or sleep,” Hailey teased.

“Could you stop making fun of me long enough to help me pick out something to wear?”

“To wear to what?” Anne asked.

“Allie’s got dinner with Levi’s parents tonight.”

“Dinner with any guy’s parents is rough, but I’m guessing royalty would be worse. Good luck.” Anne smiled sympathetically.

“Sometimes I worry you have multiple personalities,” I teased.

“What?”

“One minute you’re egging me on, and the next you’re being all understanding.”

“Hey, it’s called being your friend.”

“I know.”

Tiffany interrupted. “So let’s get back to the real issue. What are you wearing?”

“That’s the problem. I don’t know. I feel like Helen always looks so dressy, so I need to dress up, right?”

“I’d go with a simple skirt and sweater. It could go either way.” Tiffany was already heading over to my closet.

I nodded. “That’s what I was thinking.”

Hailey joined Tiffany and was flipping through my clothes. “Hmm, maybe a dress? I haven’t been to dinner at their house, but I’m guessing it’s pretty formal.”