Home > Trashed (Stripped #2)(2)

Trashed (Stripped #2)(2)
Author: Jasinda Wilder

“What are you doing?” I ask. Not my most intelligent question ever, I’ll admit.

She pauses in the act of sweeping a stray napkin into the dustpan, gives me a look that says “what are you, stupid?” And then, deliberately, each motion screaming sarcasm, she finishes sweeping up the napkin.

“Working.”

“You work on the island, then?” I’m not usually this slow, but I’m scrambling for some way to get this girl to interact with me.

She rolls her eyes at me. “Well, this is an island, I’m pretty sure, and…yep! I’m working. So it would seem that, yes, I do in fact work on the island.”

She keeps walking until she reaches a rolling trashcan, then dumps her dustpan into it. She pushes the trashcan with one hand, holding the broom and dustpan in the other. I stand and watch her walk away, realizing how stupid I sounded. Shaking my head at myself, I glance across the street. There’s a fudge shop, and I can make out the shape of a glass-door beverage refrigerator. An idea strikes me, and I head across the street and into the fudge shop. Or shoppe, as they seem to all be called here. I buy a pound of fudge in three different flavors and two bottles of water, trying my damnedest to act casual, keeping my head down and hoping no one notices me.

The clerk girl behind the counter, however, gasps when I set a fifty-dollar bill on the counter. “Holy shit! You’re—you…you’re…” She’s stammering, clearly distraught.

I smile at her, my brightest, fakest, photo-op smile. “Adam,” I say, holding out my hand.

She takes my hand in hers, a goofy, shit-eating, delirious grin spreading across her features. She’s pretty enough, for a seventeen-year old schoolgirl. “Adam Trenton.” She has my hand now and won’t let go, until I literally tug my fingers free from hers. “Holy shit. Holy shit. You’re Adam Trenton.”

I nod. “Yep. That’s me.” I slide my bill closer to her. “Gonna let me pay for my fudge, sweetheart?”

She stares blankly, and then starts. “Yeah. Yeah! Sorry, sorry, Adam. Mr. Trenton, I mean. Um. Yeah. Change.”

There’s a crowd behind me now, some quiet conversation, cell phone cameras clicking. Had to stop for fucking fudge, didn’t I? Dumbass. I get my change, offer the girl another million-dollar smile, and turn away.

“Would you—I’m sorry, I’m not supposed to do this, but—I’ve never met anyone—I mean, um…” she stammers.

I turn back, take the napkin she’s holding toward me, and sign my name with the Sharpie I always carry in my pocket.

“Here ya go, hon.” I hand the signed napkin to her. “I really do have to go now. Nice to meet you.”

I try to slip past the crowd, but someone else is calling my name, and someone else is shouting “Marek! Marek!” Which is the name of the character that made me famous, the hero from a popular graphic novel series. I stifle my sigh of irritation, shuffle my bag and the bottles of water so they’re all clutched in one hand. I sign two backpacks, three hats, six notebooks, three receipts, and pose for ten pictures before I can slip out and away from the fudge shop. Shoppe? What the hell is a ‘shoppe’ anyway?

By now the girl is gone. I scan the streets as I keep moving, ignoring the long stares I get every now again from the crowds on the sidewalks. I’m nearly run down by a pair of massive black horses pulling a long carriage and have to dance backward out of the way. Then I cross the street, heading back the way I came. I hear casters rolling across the cobblestones far ahead of me, and I set off in a space-eating jog.

I catch her as she’s rounding a corner, heading into a courtyard. “Hey! Hold on!”

She stops, turns, and rolls her eyes when she sees it’s me. “Still working, dude.”

Although, judging by the surroundings, she’s about to be finished for the day. There are other people in similar jumpsuits coming and going, and there’s a sign reading ‘Sanitation Personnel Only’ on one wall.

“You’re clocking out now, right?”

She wipes a strand of hair out of her eyes. “Yeah. Why?”

I hold up the bag of fudge and the water bottles. “Have dinner with me?”

She actually laughs at this, and her smile lights up her face, makes her eyes shine like there’s sunlight behind the brown orbs. “Fudge? For dinner?”

I shrug. “Sure. Why not?”

She gives me a skeptical look. “What do you want?”

“Just your name. And for you to have some fudge with me.” I crack my water bottle and take a long swig.

It doesn’t escape my notice that, even though she’s trying to act unaffected, her eyes follow my throat when I swallow, flick down to my chest and arms when she thinks I’m not looking.

She hesitates. “Why?”

I shrug. “I’m bored, and you’re gorgeous.”

She frowns. “Nice line, asshole.”

I laugh. “It’s not a line! That tour was hot and boring as hell and I’m hungry. And you really are beautiful.”

Her cheeks color, but she gives nothing else away. “Uh-huh. Sweaty, stinking, and dressed in a jumpsuit. It’s a sexy look, I’m sure.” She turns away from me. “Not sure what you’re after, Adam, but I’m probably not the kind of girl you think I am.” With that parting shot, she pushes through a set of double doors, shoving her trashcan ahead of her.

Shot down. Jesus. That hasn’t happened in a while.

I grin. I’ve always enjoyed a challenge.

* * *

What the hell is Adam goddamn Trenton doing on Mackinac Island? And more importantly, why is he talking to me? That was Rose Garret in the carriage with him. I’m positive. Rose Garret. As in starred in Gone With the Wind with Dawson Kellor. She’s got three Oscars and two Emmys, and she’s one of the hottest actresses in Hollywood, as well as being one of the most desirable women in the world.

I shake my head, pushing the mystery out of my mind. A freak occurrence, obviously. Probably figured I’d fawn all over him, maybe beg him to let me blow him behind the shop.

Right.

But his eyes won’t leave my mind as I dump my bag of garbage into the dumpster and put away my can, broom, and dustpan. Those eyes, such a strange shade of green, so pale they were almost pastel in color. And so, so vivid, so piercing. He looked at me like he was actually seeing me, like he could read my secrets by looking in my eyes.

I clock out, wave goodbye to Phil, the supervisor, and then unzip my jumpsuit the rest of the way, tying the arms around my waist. It’s a hot, humid, sticky day. I stink. I’m dripping sweat, and all I want is to get back to my little room and take a shower. Cold first to cool off, and then hot to get clean. Maybe meet Jimmy and Ruth for some drinks later.

 

Recommended
» November 9 read online
» The One (The Selection #3) read online
» The Elite (The Selection #2) read online
» The Selection (The Selection #1) read online
» A Court of Thorns and Roses read online
» End of Days (Penryn & the End of Days # read online
» Red Queen (Red Queen #1) read online
» The Fill-In Boyfriend read online
» P.S. I Still Love You(To All the Boys I've read online
» We Were Liars read online
Hot Series
» Surrender Your Love series
» Fixed series
» Beautifully Broken series
» Falling series
» The Arcana Chronicles series
» The Immortals After Dark series
» Stage Dive series
» Ten Tiny Breaths series
» Fallen Star series
» The Coincidence series
» The Secret series
» In the Company of Killers series
Most Popular
» Love, Chloe
» Hawke (Cold Fury Hockey #5)
» A Thousand Boy Kisses
» Wicked Sexy Liar (Wild Seasons #4)
» Beautiful Boss (Beautiful Bastard #4.5)
» Beautiful Burn (The Maddox Brothers #4)
» Endlessly Beautiful (Beautiful #1.3)
» Addicted After All (Addicted #3)
» Thrive (Addicted #2.5)
» Amour Amour