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by Elizabeth Scott



She's not happy, though. Lauren doesn't know why, but her life doesn't seem like all it's cracked up to be. Neither does her relationship with Dave, who may be just a little bit too perfect. She finds a chance to make herself happy when Evan Kirkland comes to town, but is she ready to let go and take the plunge? Is Lauren ready to leave her safe, boring life behind for the passion and happiness that she sees with Evan? She's not sure. She has, after all, struggled not to be like her mother, who let herself run away to pursue what she wanted even though it meant leaving her husband and young daughter behind.

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ISBN: 1416926836
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...away and looks relieved. "I just figured he'd be the one person you guys both know so ... you know. I mean, what else do you have in common?" "Well, sorry to break it to you, but not one mention of Marcus. I suppose I could bring him up next time, if you want." "Next time? Did Axel assign you to a study group or something?" I open my closet and look at my clothes. "Sort of. What shirt should I wear?" She doesn't say anything and I turn around to look at her, wondering if she knows what—who—I'm thinking about. But she's not even looking at me; she's staring out the window. "Hey," I say lightly. "Are you all right?" "I'm worried about Marcus," she says, and I say, "What's going on?" and turn back to the closet with a little sigh. I should have known. Katie never comes over in the afternoon anymore unless she wants to talk about Marcus. Not that she came over a lot before, but at least before Marcus we would sometimes talk about other things. I grab a blue shirt, unbuttoning...

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All quotes: 46


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1 go up to my room. I think about slamming my door, but there's no point.


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and he's looking at me, and 1 love his eyes, 1 love his smile, 1 love "1 love you, " 1 say, and as 1 watch his smile bloom 1 finally get how great those three little words are. 1 finally get what they really mean.


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Evan and I end up going to the diner where Gail and I met for breakfast. We sit next to each other in a booth, eat fries, and watch people shuffle in and out. "So you broke up with him, huh?" he says, and I look at him, give in to what I've always wanted to do and reach over, push my fingers through his hair, watching the dark strands as they slide through my fingers. His eyes are serious, intent. I nod and move my hand down, sliding it along the curve of his cheek to his jaw. I have never wanted to touch anyone like I've wanted to touch him. And now I can do it openly, without worrying who will see. "Yeah, " I say softly. "It's official now. You're stuck with me. " "I think I can handle that, " he says, and steals some of my fries, leaning over to kiss me when I laugh and steal some of his in return.


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"So what do you say we get out of here?" he says. I shouldn't be skipping more classes. I could maybe talk my way out of the two I've missed, but more than that ... I look at him and he is smiling for real now, broad and beautiful and directed just at me. "Absolutely, " I say, and even if I'm in detention for a year it'll be worth it.


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Not that everything is perfect. The sofa is kind of narrow and either my legs or Evan's keep sliding off it. I can't seem to unbutton his shirt eithernever mind that I've been perfectly able to work buttons every other moment of my lifeand I find myself wishing I'd worn any other bra besides my plain boring white one. But in spite of all of this, or maybe because of it, it all feels that much more real. I'm conscious of everything, of Evan's hands on my skin, of his mouth, of the way he is looking at me and how it makes me feel and now

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