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"I'll see you tomorrow", Tamara says as we stand in the corridor outside of our rooms, both of us about to head to bed. We've just got back from the sorority party, which was nice, and it's nearly midnight.
"Yeah, I'll see you tomorrow", I reply with a faint smile playing on my lips as I hug her before both of us turn around and head towards our rooms. I can hear her door quietly shut as she slips through the opening and I sigh. I'm pretty sure Noah is in my room and because of that, I don't want to go in there, although I have to. It's my room after all. It's the closest I got to a home right now, since my real one is thousands of miles away, and I won't let him take it away from me.
With that thought fresh in mind, I turn the doorknob and walk inside. The first thing I see is Noah, sitting up in his bed with his back rested against the wall, and our eyes meet for a few seconds before I advert mine elsewhere.
"How was the party?" Noah asks and at first, I think about ignoring his question but I decide on doing the opposite.
"Fine", I mumble and start picking up everything I'll need in order to get ready for bed.
"You thinking about joining them?" he asks and I can see, from the corner of my eye, that he has put down his phone and now direct his full attention towards me.
"Why do you care?" I scoff with my back turned towards him.
"Because I'm your friend", he replies and I almost drop all my things and walk up to him, but I restrain myself from doing so and instead, I throw him the best glare I have before I quickly walk out through the door again, my feet hurrying through the corridor towards the bathrooms. I change my clothes since I don't feel like doing it in my room where Noah most likely will look regardless of what I say, and do my normal night routine before I slowly walk back again. The corridor is completely silent and even the sound of my feet on the floor seems to be loud in comparison.
I'd like to just get under my covers and drift off to sleep, but when I close the door to my room for the last time tonight, Noah seems to have other plans. He keeps bugging me with all kind of questions and when I don't answer him, he walks up to my bed and sits at the foot of it, forcing me to move my legs in order to not get crushed underneath him.
"What are you doing tomorrow night?" he asks me as I glare at him because he is interrupting my attempts to sleep.
"Sleeping", I mutter to him and close my eyes. "Why?"
"Go on a date with me."
My eyes shoot wide open at his comment and I meet his gaze but his face is unreadable.
"W-what?" I stutter, feeling even more anxious than before.
His face cracks into a smile when he notices my bewildered state and he put his hand on top of my right knee, although it's hidden under my blue duvet.
"Go on a date with me", Noah repeat, "tomorrow, 8 o'clock."
"I... well... " I try to find the right words to say but it feels like my tongue is tying knots whenever I try to speak so I finally give up and simply sigh.
"You...?" Noah says, trying to get me to finish my sentence but as I remain silent, he decides on grabbing my hand instead.
"I take your lack of answer as a yes, then", he states and I'm quick to shake my head ferociously, causing his smile to drop and being replaced with a frown.
"Yes", he says, his voice sounding slightly restrained. Once again, I shake my head and he repeats himself again.
My hair bounces from side to side as I continue to sway my head back and forth.
"Linnea, please", he begs, sounding as if he was talking to a small child.
"No", I whisper, my tongue finally untying itself and allowing me to speak.
Noah sighs and pinch the bridge of his nose with his free hand. "Give me one good reason."
I remain silent for awhile, trying to come up with a good excuse. "I... I gotta study."
He raises his eyebrows at me and at that moment, I want to sink through the floor and just disappear out of his sight.
"And because you're a stalker", I finally say, hoping my words won't anger him. The truth might hurt sometimes, but he needs to hear it. I'm not sure he's realizing how wrong his actions are but if he doesn't, I'll gladly be the one to inform him.
"I'm not-" he starts to say in an attempt of defending himself, but I cut him off.
"Yes, Noah. You are. You've been sending me these notes, which to be fair, wasn't that bad, but you don't know when it's time to stop and you've crossed the line. You hurt Lily for freaking sake. Please, Noah, leave me alone."
I can feel the pressure on my hand increasing, indicating that my words are angering him, and I try to take my hand back but he's holding, crushing, it too tight.
"Noah", I whimper, "you're hurting me."
He doesn't meet my eyes, all he is doing is staring straight forward, and I'll have to wait for ten painfully slow seconds before he finally speaks.
"Be ready at eight tomorrow", he says sternly and let go of my hand, "or you'll be sorry."
With those words floating around in the tense air between our two bodies, he walks back to his own side of the room and turns the lights off. Eventually, I can hear the sound of his heavy and steady breathing and it's not until then, when I'm sure he's fast asleep, that I dare to close my own eyes.