She rushed around trying to get ready knowing that she was going to be late. There was no way that she could get there on time. She wondered again why she had agreed to this. She had promised herself that this year would be different. She would be the one in control …. It was one of her New Year's resolutions … supposedly one of the easy ones. And how long had it lasted? Not even 3 weeks. How would she ever manage to pull off the others?
But she'd really had no other choice she reasoned.
She hadn't known when she'd made that resolution that Molly's mother would be diagnosed with breast cancer. And here she was trying to get to her roommates part-time job so that she could cover for her because Molly had jumped on a plane and flown home to be with her mother. Molly was desperate not to lose the job that she needed to make ends meet while she finished her final year of college. So Marissa had, without a second thought, volunteered to cover for her until she got back.
But she still had her own part-time job at the library to fulfil as well. Plus lectures were just hotting up and the assignments were building up thick and fast. There were so many things that she should have been doing tonight rather than covering the desk at the off campus gym where Molly worked but … Marissa had promised.
She quickly grabbed a granola bar and an apple as she rushed out the door knowing that she would have no other chance to eat tonight and hurriedly made her way down the stairs to her waiting car.
She covered the few blocks in record time and quickly made her way into the gym. She felt awkward and self conscious wearing Molly's uniform. As far as Marissa was concerned the shorts were way too short. The top was way too small. Too tight …. too skimpy, she thought as she tried again to pull it down to meet the waist band of the gym shorts which were skin tight and left nothing to the imagination, only to have the top spring back up revealing a not so small strip of bare mid drift. There was nothing that she could do. Molly may have been quite happy wearing the outfit. But then she was an athlete and competitive swimmer who was used to people seeing her dressed like this. But for Marissa nothing could have been further from the truth. Sure she may have looked okay … but she had long ago come to terms with the fact that she was gangly and uncoordinated. When she'd gone through her growth spurt in her early teenage years everyone had told her that she would eventually grow in to her body. But here she was only a few months off turning 21 and the awkwardness was as bad as ever. That was part of why she avoided gyms and anything to do with sport at all costs. They only made her lack of coordination more obvious and made her feel worse. Whereas Molly was all tanned, lithe and supple – the ultimate guy's fantasy. Marissa felt that, when compared to her friend, she came across as the ultimate ugly duckling.
She quickly made her way behind the reception desk apologizing profusely for her tardiness to Kate, the day girl that she had to take over from. Molly had told Marissa that she would be able to spend most of her time sitting behind the desk so that no one would actually get to see much of what she was wearing anyway. That was the only reason that she had eventually agreed to wear the uniform. Well … that … and the fact that Molly told her that it was a part of the job. Marissa couldn't understand why she couldn't have just worn the practical shirt and skirt that she wore to the library. But Molly had indicated that the owners of the gym wanted the clients to feel 'comfortable' while they were there and since the clients would be wearing gym clothes, then so should the staff. Plus it didn't hurt that all of the staff there were attractive and were the perfect advertisement for a beautiful body. Marissa had tried to argue with Molly that while it made sense for Molly to wear the uniform as she would attract customers that Marissa would only send them running … which of course Molly had informed her was totally untrue. Molly had tried and tried over the last 3 years to get Marissa to accept just how attractive she was but still with little success. Molly knew all about Marissa's past and she knew just why it was that Marissa had so little confidence in her appearance and that was part of the reason why she had pushed Marissa with the rest of Marissa's resolutions for the year.
Marissa just hoped that she would be able to sit behind the desk for the night and that no one would actually get to see her legs. She knew that they were long. Disproportionately long for the rest of her body and that was why she tried to keep them covered whenever she could. If only she could keep them tucked behind the counter for the night then hopefully she would get through this without too much embarrassment. She only had to get the members to swipe their membership cards, give them a towel and make appointments for one on ones with the personal trainers … surely that couldn't be too hard. And since Molly only worked Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings then once this was over she would only have to manage two more before her friend would be back next weekend.
Time was passing surprisingly quickly. There had been a steady stream of people through the door and as hoped … Marissa hadn't needed to leave the safe haven of the reception desk at all. She'd just had a call from Steve, one of the personal trainers, wanting a printout of his appointments for tomorrow and she was waiting for the list to spit out of the printer behind her when she heard a beep from the printer indicating that it was out of paper.
Just her luck she thought as she looked around trying to find where the extra paper was stored, finally locating it in a cupboard at the end of the counter. She tore the outer wrapping from it and turned to the printer to try to work out just how and where the paper went in. Of course nothing seemed to work. The drawer on the printer that she had managed to open already had paper in it. So obviously that wasn't the tray that it was trying to use and the only other drawer that she could see she couldn't manage to get to open. Before she got too carried away she decided that she'd better turn the power off and as there was no switch visible on the front, she bent over the back of the printer trying to find the on/off switch unaware that two guys had just walked through the doors behind her.
Ryan quietly followed Luke through the doors of the private gym thankful once again for the fact that the Cohen's had bought him a membership to it as a Chrismukkah present. It was so much better than the one on campus. The campus gym was always overcrowded and had old outdated equipment. Not that Ryan had complained while using it the first 3 years of college. If Luke hadn't mentioned it to the Cohen's then he would have still been using it. He was still thankful for every little thing that they did for him. It wasn't that long ago that gym equipment to him had been whatever he could find in the vacant lot in Chino. You couldn't actually call it a park. More a few pieces of playground equipment that had been put there by some politician probably just before an election hoping to get a few extra votes but that was now rusted beyond recognition. He knew that he could make do with almost anything but that didn't mean that he couldn't appreciate having the use of somewhere like this. The equipment was first rate, the towels were supplied and there was plenty of hot water if you wanted to shower at the end of a session. He smiled as he followed his friend in the door expecting to see Molly behind the counter and waiting to hear Luke's newest feeble attempt to get the lovely Molly to go out with him. Ryan was sure that the only reason that Luke was so keen to even come to the gym was because of the young lady that greeted them each time they came. But the sight he was confronted with was definitely not Molly who was tanned, athletic and compact. There was a small tight ass leaning over the printer behind the counter and it was being held up by legs that went … forever. Ryan gulped as he tried to swallow his Adam's apple that seemed to have swollen up and stuck in his throat. As he studied the legs he felt stirrings in other parts of his body telling him that very shortly there would be swelling happening there as well. His momentary day dream was interrupted by his friend's crass comment.
"Give me a piece of that ass!" Luke said breathlessly stopping dead suddenly just inside the door so that Ryan, in his own distracted state, ran right in to the back of him. They looked like something from an old Laurel and Hardy movie.
Marissa quickly turned around blushing violently at the comment. She knew that she should say something to put the guy in his place but a) she knew she couldn't afford to upset the customers and b) she wasn't really sure just which one of the two had said it. There were two blond guys in front of her; one taller and bulkier than the other. But they were both very good looking and obviously used to getting whatever they wanted from the opposite sex. She desperately wanted to say something and put whoever had spoken in his place as she was mortified by the guy's comment but she couldn't seem to find the words or the gumption to reply. Plus, in reality, when confronted by guys like this, she was far too timid to say anything.
Luke made his way to the counter to sign in and instantly decided to try his luck. "And who are you my little lovely?"
Marissa glared at him as she recognised the voice from the earlier comment. She may not have been able to say what she was thinking but that didn't stop her from feeling it. Guys like this were the exact reason why she had dreaded covering for her friend. He reminded her of everything that she hated from high school. Good looking jocks who thought they owned the world. They were the exact reason why she'd gotten a job in the library this year. If she was ever going to pull off her major New Year resolution then she needed a geek from the library to make it happen. There was no way that she would have anything to do with any body like the good looking guy in front of her. He was the epitome of everything that she hated and the cause of her even being in the situation that she was in. Marissa tried to think of how to address him without giving him any details about her self. "I'm covering for Molly." she explained simply.
"Ah. The lovely Molly." Luke replied. "I can't say that I don't miss her but I'm sure that you could fill her position admirably. And lots of positions come to mind ..." He leered at her.
Marissa was mortified. She had no idea what to say but thankfully she was saved by the slightly shorter guy that was with this Neanderthal.
"Luke. Just shut up and leave her alone." Ryan said as he moved his friend to one side so that he could swipe his card in the reader. "I apologise on behalf of my friend. I assure you that his bark is worse than his bite. He's full of hot air." Ryan explained and Marissa couldn't help but smile shyly as the Neanderthal looked crestfallen.
"How can you say that?" Luke asked.
"Because it's true." Ryan replied. "Why don't you just swipe your card, get your towel and leave the poor girl alone." Ryan suggested. He could sense that the young lady was feeling very uncomfortable thanks to Luke's comments and for some reason he wanted to make her feel more at ease.
Luke pouted and Marissa could see just who the brain behind this team was. She wanted to say thank you but as she turned her attention to the smaller guy their eyes met and she felt like time had stood still. His eyes were the bluest things that she had ever seen and she lost herself in them completely. Fortunately Luke took Ryan's advice and did as he was told. He picked up a towel from the counter while Marissa still stood fixated on the guy before her.
Similarly Ryan was enchanted by this young woman but he knew that after Luke's performance the last thing that she would need would be for Ryan to try to pick her up. He would be labelled with the same brush as his friend. And from her mortified reaction to Luke, he didn't like his chances of getting to even first base with her.
Luke moved towards the door of the gym and called after Ryan. "You coming?"
Ryan was startled out of his 'moment' with Marissa and smiled embarrassedly. "Yeah." He replied and went to move to follow Luke but he hesitated. For some reason he didn't want this to be the last he saw of this girl and he turned back to her and asked. "Will you be here on Wednesday?"
Marissa gulped audibly. She knew that he was waiting for an answer but it seemed her brain had ceased to be able to form words.
Ryan was still waiting for an answer but her brain seemed to have stopped functioning. Finally she managed to get some words out but she just repeated the words that she'd spoken to Luke. "I'm covering for Molly …"
Ryan looked at her puzzled. He wasn't sure what that meant?
"Come on man? Stop trying to tune the chic. If she's not in to me you can't think that she'd be in to you?" Luke taunted. The competition between the two guys for the hot chic at any given party had become a game to them ever since they'd been at college together.
Ryan looked again at Marissa and then took off after Luke. He still wasn't sure what she meant by her reply? He guessed that she meant that if Molly wasn't there then she would be. He glanced back again and felt bad for a moment. He liked Molly …. But suddenly he hoped that what ever was keeping Molly away from her job tonight might somehow continue. All he knew for sure was that he wanted to see the young lady again.
Marissa couldn't believe how the appearance of the two guys had turned her evening upside down. Things had been going so well up to then. She'd been doing her job and managing to catch up on some revision at the same time but since their arrival she hadn't been able to think of anything but the blue blue eyes that seemed to have looked into the depths of her soul. She wished that the gym wasn't so hi tech. Then it may have had an old sign in system and at least then she could have found out his name. She wondered who he was? She guessed that they were both students. But then that meant that they were rich students otherwise they wouldn't have been members of this gym. Which of course fitted with the comments that they made? No doubt they were living off daddy's money. Probably didn't even care whether they passed or not; just filling in time until they could collect their inheritance. She kept trying to remind herself that he was everything that she abhorred. Spoilt, rich, good looking kids, that thought they owned the world and everyone in it. She would be well placed if she never saw him again. She just needed to keep telling herself that and then maybe she would eventually believe it because … no matter how often she said it … she couldn't help but be disappointed in the thought.
He was a perfect example of the guy that she didn't want … so why couldn't she get him out of her mind?
Ryan was having his own problems. As he proceeded with his work out he found for the first time that it wasn't having the same effect. Usually the physical effort involved in his workout managed to clear his mind of everything else so that by the end of it he was physically exhausted but mentally relaxed. But no matter how hard he pushed himself a pair of endlessly long legs and bluey green eyes were constantly running through his head. He had no idea why?
Sure she was attractive but then so were a lot of the girls at college. And he should know … he'd dated quite a few of them. But he'd never seen her before. Maybe that was the reason that she had him so intrigued. Because he hadn't seen her before and after 3 years at college he thought that he'd managed to scope out the best of the best at Berkeley. Between he and Luke there weren't too many good ones that had escaped their attention.
But something about her was different. He couldn't quite put his finger on it.
But he would. He decided to make it his mission to discover just what it was that made her different from all the others. But he could tell that he was going to have to take it slowly. Luke's comments had only made his mission that much more difficult because no doubt she'd already decided that they were just out for a good time. But he wasn't like that.
Well maybe he was he admitted to him self.
He and Luke had made a pact at New Year that they weren't going to get tied up in girl drama this semester. They'd both had more than enough of that in the last few years. Ryan had been involved with a drama queen at high school that hadn't ended well and then he found some sexual chemistry with a new divorcee but that had eventually worn itself out. There are only so many positions you can do it in before you start to realise that you need more than just the sex to have something that will last. It was all still quite a mystery to him. Just what did make it work? Sandy and Kirsten seemed to have found the recipe but he was still quite a way off. And Luke hadn't faired much better. They both had only 1 semester to go and they intended to enjoy themselves and that included the delights of the female body. But some how or other, ever since he'd entered the gym that evening, the only body he was interested in was one that was held up by never ending legs.