Excerpt from Want You to Love Me
I can still vividly remember the first time I met Ollie like it was yesterday. How could I forget? I played the scene over and over in my head. I’d just move to Hazel Pathway during the start of my freshman year. I felt numb inside and was just going through the motions of going to school and attending all my classes. I used to be a grade A student; then my grades just plummeted after my mom died. I did just enough homework to get a passing grade. I hardly noticed that I had a few classes with him. In my third week of school, I was going down the school’s stairwell, it was pretty crowded and I wasn’t paying much attention to what I was doing when I missed the last two steps and fell on my ankle the wrong way. I remember landing on the floor with a hard thud. Pain shot up my foot and ankle when I tried to stand and I sat back down. Ollie was right behind me. He saw the pain and anguish on my face and immediately took control and swooped in to my rescue.
“Everyone stop!” he said in a commanding voice, stretching his arms and legs out to create a wall around me and the students milling around us. They stopped dead in their tracks. I sat there on the stairway landing looking up at him in shock and awe.
He bent down; there was deep concern in his eyes. “Are you okay?”
At this time, my mind had turned into mush for a few reasons, embarrassment being one of them and because I was mesmerized by a pair of the most beautiful brown eyes I’d ever beheld. My eyes widened and my mouth dropped open. He was incredibly handsome. I opened my mouth to say something, but for some odd reason I wasn’t able to make a sound. Eventually I let out a squeak and shook my head.
“You must be in a lot of pain. It’s too difficult to help you walk down the stairs. I can carry you to the nurse’s office if you’ll allow me,” he said gently.
I let out another small squeak and quickly nodded.
“Okay, are you ready?”
I nodded. He carefully lifted me up in his arms like I weighed nothing.
I gasped. Wow. I’d never been lifted up by a guy before nor had I ever been so close to a guy before. The side of my body was pressed up against him. He felt so strong and masculine. I could feel heat emanating from his body.
I ignored the stares and whispers from onlookers.
“You okay?” he asked when he heard me gasp.
We were almost eye to eye. I just nodded, fully aware of the fresh woody scent of his cologne and his proximity.
“Okay, off we go,” he said. As he carried me down the stairs it felt like I was falling with each step so I held on for dear life. My arms were wrapped tightly around his neck and shoulders. He had broad shoulders and I could feel his solid masculine chest against my sides and arms. I let out little gasps with each step he took.
“Please, go slower,” I said with a gasp.
“What?” Ollie asked, slowing his steps.
“Can you go down the stairs slowly? I’m about five feet off the ground and I feel like I’m going down a roller coaster with each step you take down the stairs.”
He chuckled. “I’m sorry. I didn’t realize that’s how it felt. I’ll take it easier.”
“Thank you,” I whispered. His laugh—it was so warm, masculine and throaty. I could have listened to him laugh forever. He took his time going down the stairs this time and I gave a sigh of relief.
We finally reached the main floor. “Do you want to try to walk the rest of the way to the nurse’s office or do you want me to carry you?”
No, no! My brain cried out. Ollie holding me in his arms was ending too soon. Was it possible to capture these past few minutes and replay them over and over?
“Um… I don’t think I can walk at all, my ankle’s really killing me,” I said.
“Of course m’lady, I am thy Sir Lancelot … thy knight shining in armor, I am at thy service to the very endeth of our journey, and I shan’t faileth thee, I shalt carryeth thee to thy final destination,” he declared in a bad but gallant Shakespearean accent.
My breath hitched. Did I say I wanted to capture those moments and replay them over and over? No, nix that. That wasn’t good enough for me. I wanted him. I’d just met him but I loved him already. Yeah, it was a probably stupid thing to love him, but I couldn’t help it.
He gave me a goofy grin. “Just trying to lighten the mood.”
“Um … thanks.”
“My name is Oliver Harris, Ollie for short.”
“Samantha, Sam for short.”
“Nice to meet you, Sam. You must be new; I don’t think I’ve seen you around before.”
“Yes, my family has just moved here recently.”
“Welcome to Hazel Pathway, Sam.”
He paused. “We have arriveth, m’lady.”
I looked around. We were standing in front of the nurse’s office. How did we get there so fast? I ducked my head to hide my disappointment.
I realized that on our way to the nurse’s office I had blocked out everything around me and just focused on his scent, his closeness and his lips moving. Oh man—his lips. I’d never noticed a guy’s lips before. But I was inches away from the most beautiful lips—he had a thin upper lip and sensuous full lower lip that looked so kissable.
The nurse opened the door when she saw us through the glass door.
“What happened?” she asked.
“She fell and injured her ankle,” Ollie explained.
“Bring her in here and sit her down on that chair,” the nurse ordered.
Ollie carried me over and sat me down.
“Thank you,” I said, looking up at him.
“It was a pleasure to maketh thy acquaintance, m’lady. Thanketh thee for granting me the privilege of aiding thee in thy timeth of needeth,” he said in his Shakespearean accent.
His eyes were filled with laughter. Gaw—he was awful but I didn’t care. I was smitten.
“Um…” I was rendered speechless.
“See you around, Sam.”
“Thank you so much for your help, Ollie. See you around,” I blurted out.
He winked, turned on his heels and walked out of the room. I watched his retreating figure and felt something die inside of me. It felt like he was walking out of my life forever. Never would I have an opportunity to be close to him or speak to him again. He was my dream guy, unattainable and totally out of my league.
Sadly, I was right too. When I went back to the classes that I had with him, it was like I never existed. He would smile and nod at me. But he did that with everyone else too.
After that incident, it seemed like I noticed him everywhere. And I know this might sound ridiculous, but he was the only reason I was able to drag myself out of bed every morning and go to school. He was the only bright spot in my life.
People only saw Ollie as the class clown or the cute popular jock. He was much more than that. He had a lot of character and he was also courageous. They’d never seen him as caring or serious. But in that moment, when he took charge of the situation when I fell, he earned my adoration and unrequited love. He’d opened up a little to me and I saw a different side of him that no one had ever seen before and I would cherish that memory forever.