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sharp girls have sharp smiles

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"Hey beautiful."

Dawn looks up from the book jacket she has been inspecting and glances around, her heart already fluttering with sympathy for whatever poor girl is being hit on. But the aisle she is in is empty (not many people peruse the Ancient Civilization section at this particular used bookstore) except for a tall boy with bright blue eyes and a red polo shirt and dirty hair stuffed under a backwards baseball cap.

She looks back at her book, she's been coming in here every few weeks and is always struck by this particular volume, but never buys it.

A slight bit of movement catches at the corner of her eye and suddenly there is a meaty, freckled arm leaning against the shelf in front of her. A deep voice says, "So... you're pretty smart, huh? Beauty and brains," something tickles at her ear and she turns to see his face leaning down into her shoulder. "Some guys would be intimidated by that."

What was life before this moment? she thinks distractedly. Was there ever safety? Was there ever peace?!

She could probably kill him, he's too close and leaving all his fleshy parts exposed. One flick of her arm and he could be sprawled out at her feet.

She doesn't think of this though, just stares at him gaping like a goldfish.

He leans closer, "Are you alone beautiful? If I was your man, I wouldn't let you out of my sight."

She raises her eyebrows, "That's... frightening."

He leans back and chuckles, pleased with himself.


"So like... are you a student at the college?"

Her eyes widen, which he takes as assent.

"That's so weird I haven't seen you around before. Are you new to town?"

"No," she chokes out. Please just let this end. She thinks of every witty thing she's ever heard other girls say to get out of a situation like this, but she can't think of anything. What if she just turns and walks away?

"Would you like to get out of here?" he's leaning forward again, his chest brushing her arm.

She flinches away, covers the movement by holding up the book, "I like it here."

He smiles, it's feral and toothy, "That's cute."


She smiles, "Well. See you around," and turns back to her book, trying to angle her body away from him.

"Hey now, why are you being so rude? I was just trying to talk to you. Don't you like talking to people?"

Dawn frowns and looks back up at him, "No. No I don't."

"What are you like some stuck up bitch?"

A soft soprano giggles from behind him, "Yes. Yes she is." Elena ducks under his arm and slides her arms around Dawn's waist, pulling them together. Her eyes are full of smiles, "She's a goddamn bitch. I tell ya, I can't take her anywhere."

Dawn blushes and looks back up at him. He's blushing too, pleased as punch.


She glances at Elena, you made it worse she wants to say. Instead, she giggles, "Not even house broken yet."

"Girls take so much training, don't they?" Elena punches him in the arm like they are old football buddies. It hurts him, she didn't hold back.

He grabs his arm to his side, "Haha - yeah..."

With lightning speed, Elena flings Dawn into his chest, taking the book out of her arm. He reaches to catch her but she still ends up pressed against his warm body.


"I love it when they are easy to push around," Elena winks at him like they are sharing a private joke.

He laughs back, arms tightening around Dawn, "Especially little ones like her."

Dawn whimpers. He looks down at her and raises his eyebrows, "She treat you right?"

"I know how to handle her," Elena's voice is hard.

Dawn's eyes fill with tears. He smiles down at her, pushing her away from him gently, "Well if you ever change your mind." He kisses her on the cheek. It's sloppy and he smells like onions. "Nice meeting ya'll."

Elena takes Dawn by the arm roughly, pulling her close. "See you around," but she's looking at Dawn possessively, her thumb brushing her lower lip before leaning down and biting down on it hard enough to make Dawn's breath catch.

He's stuck standing in place, watching them. It makes Elena look a little reckless. Dawn takes the book out of her hand and puts it back on the shelf, pulling her out of the store.


At the car behind the shop Dawn shows Elena the wallet she took right out of the man's pocket. They giggle, bent over at the waist, giggling into each other's mouths as they kiss. The kiss is sharp and shaped like a smile and leaves a metal tang of blood on their tongues.