Close as Strangers // LH

Summary

After some long over due thinking, Nikki decided to transfer to a new university to get a leg up on the competition of teaching. She's slightly socially awkward and is not the typical college type of girl. She mainly keeps to herself most of the time, studying or zoning out to music. And since transferring as a senior, it won't be easy to "fit right in". Cliques have been made, friends have become sisters and enemies may be in a ditch somewhere. Her plan of staying on the down low is quickly interrupted by a tall blue eyed beaut and she's not sure if it's for the good or not!

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7. We're 5 Seconds of Summer.

I plop back down at the table clearly agitated.

"What did lover boy have to say?" Beck looks over his glasses.

"Shit," I mumble.

"Sounds like you need a girls night," Scarlett says resting her head on my shoulder.

"Yes," I pout.

"Did I hear girls' night?!" Bridgette bounces in her chair.

"Yes, Nic needs it."

Bridgette looks at me, "So what do we want to do?"

"Oh, Christ," Beck groans, "Garrett this is our time to leave."

"Fuck that. I want to do girls' night," he laughs.

"What?!" Beck shakes his head.

"Girls. All night. Sign me up."

"No, no, no. No boys," Scarlett warns.

"Oooh, alright," Garrett huffs, "I tried."

I watch as the two boys grab their stuff and scram.

"So what's the plan?"

"I'm down for whatever," I shrug.

"I'm thinking wine, junk food and a good movie," Bridgette nods.

"Perfect. Who's place?"

"We can party at my place," I raise my hand.

"Okay, Nic. Your place it is. 7 o'clock."

"Awesome. See you girls later," I smile, slinging my bag over my shoulder.

"Leaving already?"

"I got to haul ass to Pryor's class."

"Shit. You better get going," Scarlett shoos me.

"I'm running," I laugh.

But I wasn't kidding, I hustle across the lawn in hopes to make to my class on time. I've got to work on this whole being on time to class thing. I manage to spare 5 minutes and suffer through class.

"I have a couple hours till girls' night, time to start this paper."

It's a beautiful day out so I pick a spot on the lawn to write. I let my skin absorb a few rays of sunshine before opening books and grabbing my pen and paper. Music is a must for me during any writing prompt so I pop my earbuds in. I hum along to Ed Sheeran, scribbling down a lame title. Just about an hour passes and I'm barely half way through this paper.

"Ugh," I groan yanking out my headphones.

"You're putting too much effort into that."

I look up at a towering Luke Hemmings.

"I like to make sure my work is done right, Hemmo."

He sits down stretching his legs out in front of him.

"Sorry about earlier."

"It's no big deal."

"It is though."

"Luke, I'm over it."

He frowns, picking at the grass around him.

"Did you even start your paper yet?"

"No, I plan on waiting till the last second to do so."

I shake my head, "That's never a good idea."

He shrugs.

I watch him pull his piercing into his mouth before he looks over at me. I quickly advert my eyes,
slightly embarrassed that I've just been caught staring.

"Awwwe," he teases.

"What?"

"It's cute when you blush."

"I am not blushing. Hush your mouth."

He smirks, "So what were you listening to?"

"Ed Sheeran."

"Bloodstream is my favorite off his latest album."

"I wouldn't say I have a favorite. I like all of his work."

He nods taking out his phone, "Will you do me a favor?"

"Sure!"

"Listen to this song."

He hands me his phone, a makeshift album art appears with the band name 5SOS. I plug my headphones into the jack and hit play. A guitar riff start before vocals comes in. I listen carefully as Luke begins to sing. I'm in love with the lyrics. It's different in a sense. "We put the world away, yeah we get so disconnected."
I'd like to put the world away sometimes. The song comes to end all too fast as I return his phone.

"It's called Disconnected."

"I love it."

Luke smiles, shoving his phone back into his pocket.

"So you'll be at the gig tomorrow then, right?"

I trace the lace pattern under my shorts.

"Nic??" he pokes me, "pleeease?"

"I'll be there," I finally say.

"Yesss," he says over exaggerating the "s", "you have to buy a ticket though."

"How much?"

"50 bucks."

"50 bucks?!"

"Yeah, it gives you an all access pass. Backstage. Pre-show drink. Hanging out with a hot lead singer. After party."

"Wow," I laugh, "that sounds like a package."

"It truly is."

"I'm not sure I can afford that ticket though."

"Well," he rubs his chin, "I think I can get you in for free."

"Really?!" I clasp my hands together.

Luke lets out a laugh, "Under one condition."

"What's that?"

"You'll find out tomorrow," he says pushing himself up.

"Tomorrow? Why?!" I whine taking his hand to help myself up.

"Because."

His tone is daring. I have to remind myself to breathe.

"Um, okay."

Luke smiles, "So what are you up to tonight?"

"Girls' night. Which reminds me. I should get going. I'm hosting."

"Ohhh," he nods raking fingers through his hair, "we'll have fun, babe. I'll see ya in class tomorrow."

"Thank you. See you tomorrow!"

Luke and I go our separate ways. I can't help but to think he purposely didn't tell me what the circumstance was. Now I'm going to be racking my brain trying to figure this shit out.
It's not long before Bridgette and Scarlett show up, wine bottles in hand.

"So, forget the movie. Scarlett and I need to ask some questions."

I give them both a funny look, pouring myself a glass of wine.

"Okay," I say slightly unsure as to why.

All three of us sit down on the floor with a bowl of popcorn in the middle of us.

"Okay, so," Scarlett starts. I can tell she's slightly nervous.

"What's up with you and Luke Hemmings?" Bridgette finishes.

I smile looking down at my wine glass, "Nothing, why?"

"Ohhh oh!" Scarlett laughs, "we knew it! He's so into you."

"Get it girl!" Bridgette yells.

"Shhh, we are just friends."

"Please, he is forever seeking you out. Watch out, Kelsey."

"More like I should watch out for Kelsey," I say chugging the rest of my wine.

"Yeah, that bitch is crazy," Scarlett rolls her eyes.

"Well, while we are speaking of Luke," I pause, "you bitches have anything going on tomorrow night?"

"No," they both answer.

"Okay, then we are going to a 5 Seconds of Summer concert."

"Is Luke the lead singer?"

"Yes, he is, Scarlett."

  What Do You Think Tell Me. ~Karen 
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