University is complicated no matter the circumstances, but for Nick Kotsopoulous it was all that much harder. Leaving her f****y and all that she'd ever known, she traveled half way across the world for the chance of expanding her horizons by getting her doctorate in English from Yale University. The decision was a hard one to make but her f****y knew as well as she did that in order for her to get the best education possible and open many doors of opportunity along the way, she must leave her home-country and seek guidance abroad. Young and bright, Nick was immediately accepted into Yale's graduate program with various scholarship offers coming from all directions. She eagerly accepted the school's generosity and barely done with her first degree, she was on the first plane out of the country.
Her first year into the degree was a bit rocky; having to adapt to her new surroundings while trying to push down her longings for her f****y and friends. The school work was extremely interesting however and it kept her busy and distracted for most of the time, especially since she made it her first and most important priority. She was intent on finishing the degree in four years and it seemed like she was on the right track. It helped keep her mind off of those she missed but it also kept her hidden away in her dorm room, away from any company or social life.
The lecturers were delighted to have her on their staff, both as a researcher and as an assistant, but after the first year, when they grew to know her better, they became worried. They felt she was too much of a recluse and dedicated herself to her task with too much diligence. Deciding to offer a helping hand, they arranged for her to be saddled with a roommate. Graduate students had the privilege of choosing single rooms and since Nick showed obvious prominence, they were happy to oblige with her request. However, when the time passed and Nick showed no interest in any kind of social life, her friends in the department decided to meddle.
"Why am I getting a roommate again?" Nick asked in irritation. She was enjoying her space and was adamant to hold on to it. Besides, she had gotten used to having the entire room to herself and was reluctant to have to deal with any outsider.
"Well, there is a shortage of rooms in the dormitory and we are having some problems with a fairly large number of new students. We'll compensate you for this, you can be sure of that. And I further assure you, once we find a more appropriate solution, you'll get your single room again." Said Michael O'brien, the graduate advisor.
"Look, I understand about the shortage and all, but aren't there any other single bedrooms you can invade?"
Michael suppressed a chuckle, "Nope, sorry. Yours is the last one and we can't put a female student in with a male." He hoped this would satisfy her into accepting the new transfer.
They believed the new student would be able to shake Nick out of her self imposed stoicism and bring her into the world of the living. She was new to the university, a third year medical student, who was both sharp in mind and perky in spirit; just the right combination to draw anyone out of their shell.
"Why don't you meet her and see for yourself? You might just get along." He offered.
Nick sighed deeply, "Fine, it's not like I have any choice, right?"
Michael smiled, "Right," and patted her on the back.
The next day Nick was introduced to miss perky. She was about 5'4 with shoulder length blonde hair, and sparkling green eyes. Outwardly, she seemed nice enough, but it would take more than that to win Nick over. When the door burst open and the girl started shoveling in her luggage, Nick was, not surprisingly, studying. Raising her head and blinking at the bright light from the outside, she then narrowed her eyes at her new roommate. She wasn't sure if her luggage would even fit into the once single bedroom. The dormitory staff arranged for a second bed to be brought in and placed against the far wall, in front of the door. Next to it, they put a small desk, a wooden library and a compact dresser. On the other side of the room, where Nick's bedroom stood, the furnishings were much the same. The space the girl would now occupy used to be Nick's living room and she was sad to see it go away.
After finishing with her luggage, and filling half the room in the process, the blonde bounded over to her bored looking roommate. "Hi, I'm Amy." She offered her hand and smiled charmingly.
Nick looked at her suspiciously and got up from her chair. "I'm Nick. And before you get settled I want to clear some ground rules. I really dislike noise, I don't like to be bothered while I'm studying and generally speaking, I don't want parties, friends, loud music or anything of the like brought into this room." With that said, she took the stunned girl's hand in a firm shake and moved to grab a soda from the small mini bar in the corner.
Amy slowly got her bearings and said sharply, "I don't tolerate those things either, but especially, I don't like being spoken to with disrespect or condescension. Keep that in mind." Turning around, she went to put her things in order and generally stay out of the overbearing woman's way.
That was more than a year ago. Now, there was nothing that could possibly come between those two. In the year they had lived together they became the best of friends as they learned the other's likes and dislikes. They got into a routine that both found perfectly convenient and suitable and no one ever mentioned getting things back to their previous state. It seemed, however, that Nick's friends' plan didn't work out exactly as they had wished. Indeed, Nick began seeing the light of day from time to time, but as fate would have it, Amy was just as studious as Nick. She was at the top of her class and intended on remaining in that spot till the end of her degree. She told Nick in their many conversations how becoming a doctor would be a dream come true for her; how she loved and admired those working in that profession, and how she would gladly sacrifice a few years of her young life for the sake of reaching her goals. They were both dedicated students and found they were content in their role in life.
On the other hand, Amy, with her bubbly personality managed to make friends very quickly and was soon swamped with calls and invitations to parties and the like. Even though she was very much into her studies, she had to admit that she wanted to experience the life of a student more fully and wished to go out with her friends and see the things she'd been missing for herself. Every time she was invited to a party, she tried to coax Nick out of her chair and pull her in the direction of the real world. But her many tries usually ended fruitlessly. Nick was even worse than her when it came to her purposefulness.
It was morning and the sun was shining brightly when Amy entered the room. She had just come back from class and wanted to have a chat with her best friend. Entering their room, she made her way into Nick's domain, not surprised at finding her leaning over her desk, reading and typing away at her laptop. Sneaking from behind, she placed her hands on Nick's broad shoulders and started massaging them. Nick jumped slightly at the unexpected touch, but quickly relaxed into the soothing hands as they continued to attack her sore muscles.
"Hey, you still at it?"
"Hey Amy. Yeah, I have to write this paper."
"Aww, come on. I want to talk to you for a bit. You can go back to your paper afterwards."
Nick looked over her shoulder at Amy, "I'm sorry, babe, but I really have to work on this. It's due in two days and I'm so not on schedule." She took Amy's hand in hers and squeezed apologetically.
Amy moved to the side so she could see Nick better and turned her chair around. "Please?" She asked and fluttered her eyelashes prettily.
Nick chuckled and shook her head. "You're incorrigible, you know that?"
Amy smiled happily and pulled Nick by the hand, leading her into her part of the room. Settling on her bed, she pulled Nick next to her.
"Alright, what did you want to talk about?" Nick folded her legs and sat facing Amy.
"Nothing specific." Amy shrugged.
Nick rolled her eyes; she knew there was something on Amy's mind but she also knew she would probably have to fish it out of her. "Okay...umm, how was class?" She decided to beat around the bush for a little while with the hope that Amy would push her in the right direction.
Amy shrugged, "Okay."
Nick bit her lip in thought, "Hey, how was your date last night?" She had forgotten all about it. Amy went out on a date last night with a guy she'd been talking about for a while. She hadn't heard her come back but she knew it wasn't before 1am.
Amy took a deep breath and said, "Not so great. He turned out to be an asshole."
Nick frowned and looked at her in concern, "Why? What happened?"
This time Amy took her bottom lip between her teeth and chewed on it thoughtfully, "You promise not to get upset?"
Nick became visibly upset with that remark, "How can I not get upset when you ask me such a question? What happened?" Her insides were starting to roil with the possibilities that passed through her head.
"After we left the restaurant, he asked if I wanted to go for a walk on the beach and I told him that I was tired and had an early start, so it would probably be best if he just took me home. He seemed alright with that and we left. But then a few miles away from here, he stopped the car on the side of the road and told me he had a really nice time. He leaned over and started kissing me, which was nice at first but then he got more aggressive and I pushed him away. I asked him what he was doing and he said, 'getting what I deserve,' and started mauling me again. I got angry and pushed him hard, managing to open the door in the process and get out of the car. I was shaking with anger and adrenaline and felt like screaming at him at the top of my lungs. But before I could do anything, he pulled the door closed and drove off."
Nick couldn't help her reaction, she jumped off the bed and started pacing, gesturing wildly with her hands. "He did what?! That piece of shit! I'm going to freaking kill him!"
Amy jumped to her feet and grabbed Nick's hand, pulling her down on the bed again. "Nick, calm down, please. You promised you wouldn't get upset."
"No, actually I didn't. How did you get home? Why didn't you call me?"
"I walked home. It wasn't very far, only a few miles. And I didn't want to bother you, I knew you had an early start as well." She lowered her head and sniffed.
Nick immediately felt like the biggest jerk; here Amy was telling her of her horrifying date and instead of comforting her friend, she was going ballistic. Taking a breath and calming herself down, she gently raised Amy's head to her eye level. Smiling gently, she tucked a few loose strands of hair behind her ear and softly caressed her cheek with her knuckles. "I'm sorry for going crazy on you. I just wish I could kill the little..." She clenched her teeth and murmured the rest of the sentence under her breath. "Amy, you know you can always call me, no matter what. I would have been there in a second. Please, promise me, that if you ever need me, you'll let me know. Okay?"
Amy nodded slightly, blonde strands falling back on her face in the process, "I promise."
"Okay." Nick smiled and pulled the girl into a soft embrace. Tucking her head under her chin, she caressed the silky hair while drawing soothing circles on her back. As they sat on Amy's bed, holding each other closely, Nick asked, "Do you know where he lives?"
Amy chuckled and slapped her side jokingly, "No, and leave it at that. His parents own half the university. Trust me, he's not the kind of person you'd like to mess with. You really don't need that kind of trouble. Besides, I'm fine and you're so sweet for offering to hurt him." She pushed away slightly and smiled.
"Any time, k**do." Nick flashed a lopsided grin and chucked her on the chin lightly. Amy just shook her head and pulled her back into the hug.
They spent the rest of the day studying, then in the evening, they watched a movie together on the small TV they had bought for their room. Life was good for the two students and nothing seemed capable of disrupting that perfectly ordered existence.
After her horrendous date, Amy stopped going out on dates and instead followed in Nick's footsteps, contending herself in studying and seeing her other friends from time to time. During that period Amy and Nick became even better friends, if that was even possible. Since they spent so much time together they couldn't even imagine themselves spending time apart. All of Amy's friends were positive that something more was going on between the two but kept quiet for fear they could be mistaken. One day, Julia, one of Amy's classmates and study-buddies spilled the secret. "So, you going home with Nick for the holidays?"
Amy looked surprised for a minute, thinking the question over, "No. I'm not even sure if she's going home for the holidays. I guess I'll ask her if she'd like to come home with me."
"Oh that's nice. Your parents okay with that?" Julia asked nonchalantly, munching on a piece of cold pizza.
"Yeah sure. Why wouldn't they be?" Amy looked at her quizzically.
Julia shrugged, "Oh, I don't know. Not everybody is cool with all that."
Amy knew something was going on since Julia was never that evasive. Usually, you didn't have to do much in order to get a straightforward answer from her. Putting down her own slice of pizza, she asked, "Cool with what? What are you talking about?"
Julia swallowed hard, almost choking on an only half chewed piece. Trying to cover up her deer-caught-in-the-headlights look, she attempted a change of subject. "Nothing. So, how's your anatomy going?"
Amy narrowed her eyes accusingly, "Smooth, Jules. Now spit it out. What's going on?"
Sweating, Julia scratched the back of her neck nervously, "Well...You guys seem awfully close, you know? So naturally, we just thought you were...you know."
Amy cocked her head to the side, "No, I don't know. Enlighten me, please. For a doctor to be, you're not being very eloquent or coherent."
"Come on, Amy. You know what I'm talking about. You guys look like you're...like you're..." She exhaled loudly before going straight out, "like you're more than friends."
"What do you mean? What more can we be?" Amy was truly at a loss; her naiveté apparently getting the better of her.
"Amy, you can't be that innocent, can you?" At the blank look on Amy's face, she decided to spell it out for her.
"Lovers, Amy. We thought you guys were lovers."
Amy nearly choked at the admission. "What?! Why in the world would you think that?"
Julia resumed eating, "Well, I'm surprised you didn't figure it out yourself. I mean, neither of you ever goes out, except together, you're absolutely inseparable, you obviously care a lot about each other; there are times that I feel like an intruder when I'm around you two...the sparks are flying so high and bright."
Amy was staring blankly, blinking from time to time just to show she was still alive. "But...but, I'm straight, and so is she!"
Julia shrugged, "I don't know what to call it. But there's obviously something more going on, and if this is news to you then you are seriously blind. I'm sorry if we were wrong, but we really didn't mean anything by it. We just thought...well, never mind. Please don't be mad at us...at me." She requested meekly.
Amy swallowed and shook her head, "No, no, I'm not mad. I'm just...in shock."
Julia patted her knee and changed the subject, this time, more successfully.
When Amy got back to her room, she was still in a daze. As per usual, Nick was buried in her books and barely looked up when Amy came in. "Hey," she said over her shoulder. Amy flopped herself on her bed and stared at the ceiling, not having heard Nick's greeting. Thoughts were running through her head, colliding with each other, making a mess of her already muddled brain. Julia's words kept echoing in her ears, driving her to distraction. 'Lovers...we thought you were lovers...lovers...lovers...' Without her notice, a tear slid down her cheek. Soon, one was followed by another and she could no longer make herself stop.
Nick, who was surprised to hear no answering greeting, rolled her chair around and looked curiously. The sight of Amy flopped on her bed wasn't anything unusual, but her curiosity got the better of her and she got up to investigate. When she got near enough and saw the tears running down her friend's fair cheeks, she thought her heart would beat out of her chest. Dropping to her knees next to Amy's bed, she pulled the pliant body toward her in a hug. "Amy? Honey, what's the matter?" She asked frantically. When the tears wouldn't stop, she simply held her in her arms and rocked her, whispering comforting words into her red tipped ear.
Finally, the tears seemed to subside and Amy hiccupped softly. Pulling slightly away, Nick tried to capture her gaze. "Amy? What's wrong, sweetie?"
At the loving look she received after her small breakdown, Amy was on the verge of breaking into another bout of tears. She finally saw what her friends had seen all along and wondered how she could have been so blind. She still wasn't sure of her feelings, or of Nick's feelings, but she knew she loved her...deeply. Unwilling to think it over, ponder the consequences, or the implications, Amy decided that for once in her life she would follow her heart, even if it meant throwing caution to the wind. Raising a hand to Nick's worried face, she caressed her cheek gently and pulled her closer, bringing their lips together in the sweetest contact.
Nick was surprised for a second, but quickly got her bearings and let herself be enveloped by the sweetest, purest sensation that could possibly be found on earth. The kiss was over way too soon, and they drew apart. Amy was staring into Nick's wide blue eyes, swallowing thickly and trying to form a coherent thought. She didn't know what impelled her to kiss Nick, but she knew she simply had to, there was no doubt about it. And it had felt so good. Still reeling from the intense sensations that were running through her, Nick knew she had to say something, break the tension, but she had nothing...her head was completely empty.
"I'm sorry..." Amy began, but then stopped herself. She realized that she wasn't in the least bit sorry. She was very much confused but not sorry at all. She didn't regret the kiss, she was glad it happened and was busy beating herself up for not noticing what was going on sooner. However, she had a feeling that Nick was just as lost as she was, if the look on her face meant anything. "I'm not sorry for the kiss...I'm just sorry I jumped on you like that. Nick, please don't hate me, I just had to find out...see if what they were saying is true."
Nick shook her head, "Wait, wait. First of all, I could never hate you, and second, who said what and what brought this on?" Although Nick had always considered herself straight, she had to wonder. She loved Amy dearly and would do anything for her, but she never thought or even considered this option of something more. Perhaps she never considered that because their relationship was so easy, so pure and loving that neither wanted to taint it with something more. But then again, that kiss felt incredible, Nick had to admit. It had felt like her world suddenly burst into life and her heart started beating for the very first time. Moreover, she always enjoyed holding Amy and being near her, and felt like she could kill any person that were to hurt her. She always chucked it up to being overly protective. Deep down, if she took a moment to consider her feelings, she found a kernel of desire whenever she thought about her beautiful friend. She couldn't ignore the fact that she found her extremely attractive, but the possibility never came to mind. Why? She asked herself. Because we just never considered that a possibility between us, she thought quietly; we never gave this a chance.