Home > On a Tuesday (One Week #1)(16)

On a Tuesday (One Week #1)(16)
Author: Whitney G.

I’ll be rooting for you to win.

—Charlotte

SUBJECT: RE: RE: TODAY’S Game.

“Friends” go to each other’s games, Charlotte. Do you need a ticket?

—Grayson

SUBJECT: RE: RE: RE: Today’s game.

Well, since I don’t play a sport and I don’t recall ever asking you to show up to anything, I think we’re even on that point. (Tickets are sold out, as usual)

I really will be rooting for you.

—Charlotte

SUBJECT: RE: RE: RE: Re: Today’s Game.

I show up every Tuesday while you continuously play hard to get. Same concept. (I just left a ticket in your name at the ‘will call’ window.)

You should come root for me in person.

—Grayson

I STARED AT HIS EMAIL, trying to think of a viable excuse to get out of going, but I couldn’t think of one.

Wait. I don’t have my car today.

Before I could tell him that Nadira was using my car, so I didn’t have a ride to the game, he sent me another message.

SUBJECT: RIDE.

Just in case you’re thinking of an excuse not to show up, my friend Seth is willing to pick you up. He’ll be at your dorm in twenty minutes and he’ll be driving a red SUV. Does this work for you?

—Grayson

SUBJECT: RE: RIDE.

Yes. Thank you.

—Charlotte

SUBJECT: RE: RE: RIDE.

You’re welcome. By the way, I think now is the right time for you to finally give me your phone number.

—Grayson

SUBJECT: RE: RE: RE: Ride.

I’ll think about it.

—Charlotte

I SMILED AND HEADED back to my dorm, changing into a pair of jeans and a navy-blue Pitt hoodie. I grabbed my camera and waited in the lobby for his friend to show.

Five minutes later, a red SUV honked its horn and I made my way outside.

“Seth, right?” I slipped into the passenger seat, trying to ignore all the crumpled McDonald’s bags that were on the floor.

“Yes, I’m Seth.” He extended his hand to me. “Nice to meet you.”

“I’m Charlotte.”

“I know who you are.” He pulled his car onto the street. “Trust me.”

“Is that supposed to be a compliment or an insult?”

“It’s a huge compliment,” he said, speeding through a yellow light. “It’s not too often that Grayson begs me to leave the stadium so I can go back to campus and pick someone up. And by ‘not too often,’ I mean never, so I’m assuming you two must be really good friends.”

“I just met him this semester.”

“Bullshit,” he said. “The most I’ve ever gotten him to do for me is give me gas money, and I’ve known him since freshman year.”

I didn’t want to laugh, but I couldn’t help it.

He quickly steered our conversation toward music and movies for the rest of the ride. When we arrived at the stadium, he walked with me to the will-call window, and then he disappeared to be with his other friends.

Confused, I stared at the VIP ticket in my hands and read the blue directions that were printed on the back. As I made my way through another round of security, I wondered why everyone else was heading in the opposite direction for their seats, why mine called for me to stand in front of an elevator and enter a code.

I pressed 4-4-4-4 and the doors immediately sprang open. There were no buttons on the inside, and the cart rose to the stadium’s top floor.

An older man in a bright gold varsity jacket smiled at me the second I stepped off.

“Are you Charlotte Taylor?”

“Yes.”

“Okay, good.” He handed me a glittering “VIP” lanyard. “I was beginning to think Grayson made you up, or even worse, left his tickets unclaimed again.” He led me into a massive glass skybox that faced the field, a private room that was filled with executives and alumni.

Everyone was wearing Pitt's colors, and there were waiters carrying trays of wine and hors d’oeuvres. The tables that lined the room were full of gourmet chocolates and sweets, and I didn't even want to know how much it cost to be in this room.

“Would you like something to drink?” A brunette suddenly stepped in front of me with a tray of glasses.

“Water, please.”

“Right away.” She took a bottle off her tray and handed it to me. “I’ve never seen you up here before. Whose name are you under?”

“Grayson Connors.”

"Oh?" She smiled. "Well, that's different.”

“What is that supposed to mean?”

“Nothing.” She shrugged. “Just that my granddad has ownership in the stadium and he makes me work the games to earn money, and I’ve never missed one. Not since I was in high school.”

I gave her a blank stare. I had no idea what the hell her grandad owning this stadium had to do with Grayson or her “different” comment.

Apparently understanding the confused look on my face, she laughed. "It means that except for his mother, Grayson has never offered anyone else his skybox seats."

Right ... “I’m sure he’s invited other girls up here. You probably just don’t remember.”

“Nope.” She shook her head and stepped back. “Never. He doesn’t even let his guy friends use his passes.”

I didn’t get a chance to say anything else before she turned away to help someone else with drinks. Unsure of where to sit, I moved to the row of seats closest to the window and took a seat on the end.

I could see the back of Grayson's jersey—the brightly emblazoned number four shining brightly as he stepped onto the field. And the moment his opening pass to Kyle Stanton became a touchdown within the first ten seconds, I knew this game was over.

THREE HOURS LATER, when the last of the celebratory confetti had fallen over the field, I set down my wine glass and stepped out of the skybox. I called Nadira, to ask her to wait for me in the parking lot, but Grayson’s name popped onto my screen before the call went through.

Subject: You.

Are you still here?

—Grayson

Subject: Re: You.

Yes.

—Charlotte

Subject: Re: Re: You.

Good. Wait for me.

—Grayson

Subject: Re: Re: Re: You.

Where?

—Charlotte

Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: You.

The Pitt-Favs concession stand on Level 2. I'll meet you there after my coach gets done talking.

—Grayson

I TOOK THE ELEVATOR down to the second level, making my way through the exiting crowds. As the vendors shut down their windows, I sat on a bench and watched as fan after fan gushed about the win.

Twenty minutes later, Grayson walked through the hallway, stopping to take a few pictures with a few young kids. Still dressed in his football uniform, he took a seat across from me and smiled.

“Did you enjoy the game?” he asked.

“Not at all,” I said. “I was bored out of my mind. Did you get to play?”

“I’ll take that as a yes. Do you have plans for tonight?”

“Yes and no.”

“Well, there’s an after-party on the North Shore at nine. Will that time fall under the ‘yes’ or ‘no’’ part of your plans?”

“I have a date at eight thirty.”

“A what?” His eyes widened.

“A date,” I said. “You know, those things that a guy asks you on when he’s interested in getting to know you better.”

“I know what a date is.” He clenched his jaw. “How could you possibly—I mean, when did he ask you out?”

"Last week," I admitted. "He's in my Anthropology class."

He stared at me, not saying anything for several seconds. He gently tugged at my VIP lanyard and sighed. “You’re making this very difficult.”

“I’m not trying to make anything difficult.”

“You don’t have a boyfriend, but you won’t give me your phone number.” He narrowed his eyes at me. “And you’re willing to go out with other guys who are not trying as hard as me, so what do they have that I don’t?”

   
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