Chapter 1: The Roommate with Knives
Going to university to study to become a detective was the last thing that Chloe Decker expected to be doing with her life.
Barely 5 months ago she had been starring in a hot new teen movie called, ‘Hot Tub High School’ and flashing her boobs for a camera. Now she was moving into her dorm at university to get involved in the police force like her father.
A complete 180 if there ever was one. But the reason for that sudden change was quite tragic.
Chloe’s father had died in a shooting while off the clock as a police officer a few months ago, just as her new movie was coming out. In fact he’d been encouraging people to go see it that night when he was shot and killed.
The case was still underway, and the sudden violent incident tore Chloe apart, so she abandoned her mother’s career path of acting and chose to follow in her father’s footsteps instead and become a cop; well a detective specifically but she had to work up to that.
“You’re sure this is what you want, Chloe?” her mother asked for the thousandth time since she had applied for the policing program.
Chloe sighed and looked at her mother, “We’re literally moving in right now, I’m pretty sure mom.” She grumbled as she heaved another box into her new bedroom.
The dorm itself was small but decent. It consisted of two bedrooms with an attached kitchen, bathroom and living room. It would do.
Chloe’s roommate hadn’t arrived yet, and she was nervous to meet her.
The name label on their door had said that her roommate’s name was Mazikeen Smith, a name that Chloe had never heard before and was very intrigued as to what she’d be like. It was also quite an ironic name considering the unique first name and incredibly common last one.
“I know, I know.” Her mother replied, glancing around the cramped dorm with disapproval, “I just…this isn’t the life I pictured for you Chlo. I pictured you living in a nice apartment while you go to auditions.”
Chloe turned from the box she was beginning to unpack and frowned at her mom, sudden anger filling her veins, “I’m pretty sure the life you imagined for me didn’t have dad gone either, did it?” she snapped without thinking.
Her and her mom had always butted heads a lot due to their similar stubborn personalities, and they had been especially bad after Chloe’s father John Decker died.
Immediately Chloe regretted what she said and tears filled her eyes as she looked at her mother’s hurt expression, “Mom I-I…I’m sorry I didn’t-“
But her mom quickly cut her off by hugging her tight, tears in her own eyes, “I know you didn’t, pumpkin. We’re both having a hard time.” She rubbed Chloe’s back as Chloe sniffled into her shirt, allowing her mother to hold her as if she were a child again, and not 19.
Chloe hugged back tightly, swallowing her tears and trying to keep it together; she didn’t want her roommate’s first impression of her being that she was a cry baby.
“I’m still sorry.” She slowly pulled away, wiping her eyes and taking a deep breath, “I know it’s been hard for you too.”
“Let’s not fight now.” Her mother gently stroked a piece of hair from Chloe’s face, “Let’s just focus on unpacking, yeah?”
Chloe nodded and managed a small smile, “Yeah.”
Around an hour and a half later and Chloe was pretty much moved in, her mother having left after a tearful farewell. Her clothes were in her small chest of drawers and closet, her bed was made up with her new bedding, her things were in the bathroom and kitchen, and her personal belongings were arranged and put away.
Her desk sat against the far wall from the door, the window above it giving a nice view of the vast campus. Chloe had set her pencil pot and other stationary items on the desk, as well as a Newton’s Cradle that used to sit on her father’s desk at the LAPD police precinct. It was neat and free of clutter, just like she liked it. A waste paper basket was tucked just underneath it so it was out of the way.
Her bed rested against the right hand wall, a double bed with blue and white striped bedding and above it a painting of flowers was pinned. Beside it was a simple wooden bedside table which had a lamp atop it, as well as a framed photo of Chloe and her dad from when she was younger.
Opposite the desk, beside the door was a built in closet where Chloe had hung some of her clothes, which mostly consisted of various jackets with the occasional dress; she was a practical girl not a ‘fashionable’ one.
Then finally on the left hand wall sat her dresser which was wooden and matched the bedside table, above which a mirror had been affixed to the wall as well as some fairy lights.
Satisfied, Chloe was just heading into the kitchen to get one of the snacks she had brought with her, when she was stopped by the door suddenly opening. She jumped slightly in surprise and stared as a girl with dark hair and caramel skin, clad in leather entered the room.
Quickly Chloe snapped from her surprise and smiled at the girl, “Hi, you must be Mazikeen, my roommate.” She greeted kindly.
But the girl didn’t even give her another glance, just pushed her moving cart of boxes into the other room and shut the door behind her without a word.
“Okay then…” Chloe just looked at the closed door for a minute, dread beginning to weigh in her stomach as she worried that her roommate had already decided she didn’t like her. She’d been hoping for a nice, quiet roommate who she could get along with.
Maybe she’s just not very sociable, Chloe comforted herself as she grabbed a granola bar from the box in one of the kitchen cupboards, Yeah that’s probably it, it isn’t like she’s a psycho or anything.
“Where should I put my knives?”
Were the first words that came from Chloe’s new roommate, as she finally left her room an hour later and entered the living room where Chloe sat watching TV, an array of knives clutched in her hands.
Chloe gulped. Was it too late to change roommates? Maybe Mazikeen really was murderous.
“Uh-Uh…in the kitchen?” she replied nervously.
Then to Chloe’s surprise, Mazikeen suddenly burst into laughter, “Your face is priceless.”
Chloe blinked at her in confusion, “Yeah haha, funny.” She replied uncertainly, tensing as her roommate plopped herself down beside her on the couch, knives still in hand.
“Sorry for the cold shoulder, I just wanted to assert my dominance, you know how it is, right?”
“Sure?” Chloe couldn’t stop looking at the knives.
Mazikeen chuckled, setting them down on the coffee table, “Relax, they’re just my kitchen knives. You honestly thought I was some kind of psycho didn’t you?”
Chloe bit her lip, “No of course not…”
“Sure…you know for a wannabe cop you’re a bad liar.”
“Cops aren’t supposed to lie.” Chloe replied, still a bit on edge about this girl. There was something about her that made her nervous, despite her sudden cheeriness.
Mazikeen groaned, “Oh so you’re gonna be one of those cops. Boring.” She picked up one of the knives and twirled it in her hand, causing Chloe to gasp slightly out of reflex, “Girl you need to learn to relax, I’m not going to hurt you…unless you’re into that.” She wiggled her eyebrows suggestively.
Very quickly Chloe’s face went red, “I…uh…no I am not ‘into that’.” She stammered awkwardly.
Yet another laugh from her unusual new roommate, “I’m kidding.” She put the knife down thankfully and clapped a hand to Chloe’s shoulder, “Oh I think we’re going to be good friends, Decker.”
“Yeah…me too.” Chloe wasn’t so sure about that, but she was willing to give Mazikeen a shot.
How bad could she be?
Chapter 2: The Devil across the Hall
When a loud party interrupts Chloe's attempt at sleeping, she is forced to face the culprit and try to get him to turn the music down.
The only problem is her rowdy neighbor is an egotistical man by the name of Lucifer Morningstar, who is more interested in annoying her than complying to her request.
After their initial awkward first encounter, Chloe and Maze had slowly gotten a bit more comfortable with each other as they just sat and talked for a bit; Maze put her knives away in the kitchen thankfully.
Chloe learnt firstly that her roommate went by Maze, not Mazikeen; apparently she was very mad at the residence advisers for putting her full name on the door tag. She also learnt that she was studying fashion which explained the interesting clothing choices.
While Maze deemed Chloe’s wardrobe, ‘the saddest thing ever’ and that her wanting to be a cop was ‘lame, and flashing your boobs for money was a much better career choice’, she wasn’t a murderous psycho, so Chloe called that a win.
After their chat they both ordered pizzas and went their separate ways to their rooms.
Chloe chose to start reading one of horrendously expensive textbooks she had bought, just to get a head start on their readings for class.
Yes, she knew how sad that sounded but she was here to learn after all.
But it seemed other people in the building had other plans, as barely five minutes after she’d begun reading and eating, loud music began to blare from a nearby dorm, so loud that Chloe could hear it loud and clear, making reading impossible.
“Yes, a party, finally some fun around here!” Maze announced, pulling open Chloe’s door, “Come on we have to go…are you reading before class starts?” she sounded disgusted.
Chloe turned and looked at her, “What? I wanted to get a head start.” She shrugged, “And you go without me, I’m not a big party girl.”
Maze crossed her arms, “Really Decker? You’re going to spend the first night at university in your dorm room reading a textbook while there’s a rad party going on?”
“Yep that’s exactly what I’m going to do.” Chloe took another bite of pizza, making it clear that she wasn’t going to change her mind.
“One day I’m going to get you to loosen up Decker, you’re acting like a middle aged woman.” Maze grumbled before leaving her room.
Chloe rolled her eyes to herself and turned back to the book. Yes, she may act more mature than most people her age but she liked being the responsible one and wouldn’t take shame in that even if it made her a party pooper or a ‘middle aged woman’.
A few minutes later she watched through her door, which Maze had left open, as her roommate left her dorm room and out through the main door, momentarily making the music even louder before it became quieter again as the door closed.
Chloe let out a breath she didn’t know she’d been holding since Maze arrived. The girl was alright, but she put Chloe on edge for many different reasons, so it was kind of nice to get a break from her for a moment.
The party was loud and annoying so Chloe could barely focus on her reading. After another few minutes of trying but failing to concentrate on the complicated laws she was reading about, Chloe shut the book with a defeated sigh.
“This party better not go on all night or I’m gonna be pissed.” She grumbled as she took her pizza into the living room to watch some TV.
A few hours later and it was around 1am.
Chloe had been trying to get to sleep for an hour now, but the blaring din from outside still hadn’t stopped. She had an 8am class the next morning and was frankly quite furious.
At first she’d just stuck headphones in and tried to block it out, but it was impossible to sleep with that noise, regardless of ear protection or not.
So after a few moments of considering her options, Chloe’s anger got the best of her and she slid her slippers on, grabbed her room key and marched out of her bedroom and her dorm, into the hallway, just wearing slippers, a light pink t-shirt and blue plaid pajama pants.
Once out in the hallway it was clear that the source of the sound was coming from the dorm directly opposite hers, upon which the name label read ‘Lucifer Morningstar’ which was curious for two reasons. One, that’s an even more unusual name than Mazikeen and two, why doesn’t he have a roommate name beside his? Does he have a roommate?
“Better off then for whoever may have been his roommate. If my roommate threw a party like this before classes started, I’d kill them.” Chloe muttered to herself, barely hesitating before knocking firmly on the door so as to be heard over the racket.
And of course who opened the door was none other than Maze herself.
“Decker, you finally chose to join the party!” she looked Chloe up and down, taking in her bedhead and pajamas, “Odd clothing choice but oh well, come on in. I can set you up a round of shots-“
Chloe shook her head, quickly cutting Maze off, “No, Maze I’m not here to party. I’m here to tell the jackass who started it to turn it down because I’m trying to sleep.” She growled, her fatigue only making her fuse shorter.
Maze raised an eyebrow, “Are you serious? In that case, I can’t help you. I’m not being held responsible for shutting down an awesome party.” And with that she left, leaving Chloe standing in the doorway, looking into the dorm that was packed with dancing, mostly intoxicated students.
She scoffed, “I’ll do it myself then.” And with that she began squeezing her way through the crowd, “Does anyone know where Lucifer Morningstar is?” she called, but her voice was barely audible above the noise.
“Lucifer Morningstar?! Has anyone seen him?”
Chloe turned to the source of the oddly sophisticated sounding voice, finding that it belonged to a young man who dressed as fancy as his accent. He wore a black suit with a blue dress shirt, which looked very odd next to all the other students in jeans and shirts, or casual dresses. And especially next to her in her pajamas.
He was tall and slender yet well built, his eyes so dark it looked like they were black, and they were lightly ringed with eyeliner. His hair was dark too, as well as the stubble along his jaw. He was basically the definition of tall, dark and handsome.
Suddenly Chloe felt uncomfortable by her attire as the man’s dark eyes seemed to bore into her soul, “I uh…I’m Chloe…I wanted to tell him to turn it down because I have an 8am class tomorrow morning and I can’t sleep with this racket.”
The man raised an eyebrow, approaching her with a smirk on his lips as he took a swig from a glass of whiskey in his hands, “Oh really? Well he happens to be me, and I feel like having a party so that seems like a you problem.”
Chloe’s confidence suddenly returned along with her anger at the man’s words, and now his identity was confirmed she was ready to lay into him, “A me problem?” she scoffed incredulously, “You’re the one blaring your music at 1am! I just want to sleep like any normal person.” She crossed her arms, “I’m not asking you to stop the party, I’m just asking you to turn it down a bit.”
Lucifer raised his eyebrows, “Temper, Temper.” He tutted, not actually acknowledging what she was saying. But before Chloe could say anymore, he’d changed the subject, “Hang on…you look familiar, do I know you from somewhere?”
Immediately Chloe knew where he’d probably recognized her from, and she felt her cheeks heat up, however she tried to act nonchalant, “Nope, never seen you before and frankly never want to see you again.”
That got a chuckle from the man, “Unfortunately for you, we are practically neighbours. So I think you’ll be seeing a lot more of me than you bargained for.” He leered, tauntingly tugging up the corner of his shirt to reveal his muscled stomach.
Chloe forced herself not to stare, only going redder but she made herself remain composed, “You repulse me.” She growled, “Now just turn-“
But Lucifer cut her off as he snapped his fingers, seeming to have realized something, “Hang on a minute…you were in that movie Hot Tub High School! That’s where I know you from.” He smirked, “That was quite a saucy hot tub scene.”
The mere mention of that awful movie made Chloe cringe, but she tried not to show it, “Thanks man, that’s gotta be my proudest moment.” She responded, voice dripping with sarcasm.
Lucifer’s eyes now had a sort of twinkle to them that disturbed Chloe, “I mean you’ve tried to disguise yourself with these clothes-“he gestured to her pajamas, “-but there’s no fooling me. I have a great eye for a beautiful woman.”
Chloe hated how the word made her stomach stir. She knew he was just trying to get into her pants, he didn’t actually mean that.
She didn’t know what to say and just glared, “I didn’t come here to talk about my past mistakes. I’m here to tell you to turn it down, or I’ll-“
“You’ll put me in handcuffs?” Lucifer smirked, “Your lovely roommate informed me of your dreary major choice. I’d been hoping you were here to continue your wonderful acting career. But unfortunately for you, I’m quite into being bound.” There it was again, that naughty twinkle in his eye that Chloe hated, but it annoyingly made her heart skip a beat.
She scoffed in disgust, beginning to lose her patience with this guy, “Are you seriously incapable of not being a jackass for five seconds?” she crossed her arms, letting out a sigh as she began to get too tired to be angry, “I’m beginning to see now why you don’t have a roommate.”
Lucifer shook his head, “No, that was my decision. Well, I paid off the university to allow me to have the whole dorm to myself. I’m used to living in much nicer accommodations. The least I could do was ensure I had this small place to myself.”
Chloe gritted her teeth. Great, he was rich on top of being egotistical. Now he’d be even worse to deal with. “Please just…have some common decency. I don’t want to sleep through my first class.” Her tone became defeated.
And it seemed that finally got through to the egotistical man, “All you needed to say was please.” He grabbed a remote and turned the thundering music down, causing the crowd in the dorm to groan.
“Sorry everyone, but my gorgeous neighbour needs her beauty sleep, and I’m not a completely heartless person.” He looked to Chloe who was cringing under the frustrated gazes from the party goers.
She just shot him a displeased look and began squeezing her way back through the crowd to the door.
“Wait, not even a thank you?” she heard Lucifer call from behind her and she just smirked and rolled her eyes to herself as she reached the door and swiftly left, returning to her own dorm.
The music could still be heard from her room, but it was at a volume where she could ignore it. But once she got into bed again, her mind was racing, unable to stop thinking about that annoyingly handsome guy across the hall.
She groaned to herself as she buried her head in her pillow, “First you disturb my sleep with your party, now with your stupid face.” She grumbled into it.
Chloe hated the guy, who had such a huge ego that it may as well have been his roommate. He was attractive and he damn well knew it, and was also incredibly rich if he could pay off the university to allow him to have the dorm to himself. Not to mention the fancy décor that she had briefly glimpsed while inside. All in all he was infuriating yet oddly alluring.
“He is going to be the death of me…”
Chapter 3: First Day
Chloe attends her first class, and finds that her old career path is haunting her.
Chloe awoke early the next morning to her alarm clock blaring in her ear. She grunted as she rolled over and hit her hand on it to turn it off.
She yawned as she slowly sat up, rubbing her eyes as she opened them. At first she was slightly confused upon seeing her new surroundings, but very quickly the memories from the previous day flooded her mind and her confusion disappeared.
After a moment of hesitation she dragged herself out of bed and stumbled to the light switch, turning it on and blinking against the bright light. Chloe then went to her chest of drawers and spent a few minutes looking for an appropriate outfit.
Eventually she decided on jeans, a white t-shirt and her leather jacket.
Once dressed she went into the bathroom and freshened up, then into the kitchen to fix herself some breakfast. It felt a bit weird not having her mom there nagging at her for her lack of makeup or casual ponytail. She was always trying to get Chloe to dress and look more ‘like an actress’ but that wasn’t her style and now she could embrace that without criticism. After all, she wasn’t an actress anymore, she was going to be a cop.
A rush of excitement and nerves rushed through Chloe as she poured herself a bowl of cereal and made a cup of coffee to wake herself up. She worried that perhaps she had made a mistake, was she really suited for this? Her career choice had truly done a 360 and as exhilarating as it was, it was also daunting.
These thoughts ran through Chloe’s head as she ate silently at the small dining table in the kitchen. Maze wasn’t awake yet, so either she had a later class, or had overslept; Chloe guessed the latter seeing as she probably got in even later last night from the party.
Her nerves ended up getting the better of her and Chloe left her cereal half finished, her stomach too knotted for her to want to eat anymore. She disposed of the leftovers and put her empty bowl and mug in the sink to wash later. After brushing her teeth, applying some light makeup and brushing her hair into a ponytail, Chloe was ready to leave.
It was 7:30, a half hour before her class started, perfect. Chloe wanted to get there a bit early so she could make a good first impression to the professor and get first pick of the seats in the lecture hall, as well as allowing her time in case she got a bit lost finding the room. She checked her backpack, ensuring it had everything she needed inside.
Just as she was checking over her appearance in the mirror, Chloe’s phone buzzed in her pocket. She dug it out and flipped it open to reveal a text from her mom:
Good luck today sweetheart. I know you’ll do great. Make your dad proud xxx
Tears sprang to Chloe’s eyes and she quickly blinked them away so as not to spoil the makeup she had just applied. Making her father proud was a big motivator to encourage her to abandon the comfortable actress lifestyle for this unpredictable, dangerous one. It was still incredibly daunting but knowing he would have encouraged her, made her feel a bit better.
“I won’t let you down dad.” She smiled sadly at the picture of the pair of them on her bedside table before hiking her bag onto her back, tucking her phone and room key card back into her pockets and heading out the door.
But before she could fully get out the door, she heard that familiar, annoying voice speaking to her.
She sighed and reluctantly turned around and faced her neighbour with a frown, “Hi.” She replied shortly.
Lucifer raised his eyebrows, “Ooh, someone woke up on the wrong side of the bed.” He smirked, pulling a flask from the inside pocket of yet another suit that he was wearing, “Here, you could use a pick-me-up.” He tried to hand it to her.
Chloe scoffed, “Yeah, no thanks. I had some coffee, that’s good for me.” She began walking, hoping to lose the guy but he began walking alongside her in the narrow hallway so they were nearly touching shoulders.
“More for me then.” He shrugged and took a swig, before tucking it away again, “So, did you sleep well after our little encounter last night? Certainly looks so. I thought you looked good last night, but now you look simply ravishing.”
Chloe desperately wanted to just ignore him, but Lucifer was frustratingly insistent, “Yes I did. And I hope that last night was a one-off so I don’t have to see you again.” she tried her hardest not to blush at his flirting.
Lucifer huffed a chuckle, “Well I suppose you will be seeing me again, as I plan on having parties almost every night. It is for educational reasons however. You see, I’m here studying business so I can open my own nightclub, and throwing parties now is good practice.”
Chloe felt her heart sink and she finally made eye contact with Lucifer, to give him an ‘are you kidding me’ glare, “Really?” she gritted her teeth, “Well I won’t stand for it, I’ll tell the RAs if it keeps happening.”
“Ooh, a threat I like that.” Lucifer grinned, “Unfortunately for you, I also paid them off to allow me to have as many parties as I like, so it seems you don’t have the authority on that, detective.”
Chloe ignored how being called detective made her heart flutter, and instead she just glared at him harder and marched off, ignoring his yell for her attention from behind; It was too early to deal with him.
Thankfully he didn’t run after her, and Chloe managed to walk the rest of the way from her residence building to her class in peace. She was glad she had given herself extra time to get there, as she got a bit lost on the huge campus on her way to the lecture hall, but found it eventually with ten minutes to spare by the time she arrived.
Unfortunately that meant that there were already quite a few people inside, and Chloe immediately heard some whispers among some of her peers as she entered. It didn’t take a genius to realize what they were probably talking about.
“Hey Chloe you must be lost, this is policing fundamentals not slutty acting 101.” A girl near the back of the class called, causing some laughter from the other people in the class.
Chloe’s cheeks burned red, but she stood her ground, “I’m fully aware of that fact, thank you.” She replied as firmly as she could, before sliding into an empty seat near the front, keeping her head held high as much as she wanted to hang it and hide.
“This seat taken?” a moment later came a kind, male voice and Chloe glanced over to see a young man with quaffed brown hair, a brown leather jacket and a shoulder bag looking at her and smiling.
He was rather handsome, but also had a kind look in his eye that Chloe appreciated, “Uh no, feel free to sit.” She smiled back, gesturing to the empty seat beside her.
The man nodded and sat down, placing his bag on the long table before them, “I’m Dan by the way, Dan Espinoza.” He greeted, extending his hand.
“I’m Chloe Decker.” Chloe replied, gently shaking his hand and still smiling. After the poor start to the class, things seemed to be looking up.
But then Chloe saw that look in his eye, the one people got when they realized who she was, and her heart sank as she prepared for another unkind insult, but instead Dan just gave a cute confused expression, “I recognize you from somewhere but I can’t put my finger on it.”
Chloe let out a breath of relief that he didn’t immediately realize where from. As badly as she wanted to lie to him and say it must just be a coincidence that he recognized her, she knew it would be in vain seeing as half the class seemed to know about her past career, so she chose to be truthful.
“Well I…I was in a film not long ago…not a great one, I’m not proud of it.” She replied quietly, looking away, “I may have…shown the whole world my boobs and I couldn’t regret it more.”
She sighed, scratching her nail along the side of the desk to distract herself from her humiliation, still worried that Dan would dislike her once he found out why he recognized her.
“Oh…right I remember that film now. I mean I-I didn’t watch it, my brother did but I just saw the posters and stuff.” He replied somewhat awkwardly then put a hand on her arm, “Don’t be ashamed, we all do things that we regret.”
Chloe slowly looked up and met his eyes, seeing that same kind look which made her feel better and she managed a smile, “Thank you…it seems you’re the only person who understands that.”
Their conversation was suddenly interrupted as the professor walked to the front of the room, a middle aged man with a crew cut, stubble and a no-nonsense expression; classic cop look.
“Welcome everyone to your first class of the semester. I’m Professor Stuart and I will be teaching this first year policing fundamentals class.” Chloe placed her notebook and pencil case on the desk, flipping to the first blank page and uncapping a pen, ready to take notes.
The professor rambled on a bit more about rules and expectations, as well as what they were going to cover in the class, before he said something that made Chloe’s stomach do a somersault.
“Now to get to know each other, I want each of you to stand up and introduce yourselves, and tell us why you want to get into law enforcement.”
Considering she had already been embarrassed by some of her peers, Chloe didn’t put it past them to take this opportunity to do it again. So she found herself shrinking in her chair slightly as the professor began pointing at people to get them to introduce themselves; starting at the front which just made Chloe more anxious because she was in the second row.
Chloe could barely pay attention to the names and explanations her peers gave, too absorbed in her own panic, until Dan was pointed to and he stood up.
“I’m Dan Espinoza, and I want to be in law enforcement to help people.” He gave Chloe a small smile, which made her feel a tiny bit better but her stomach still clenched when she was pointed to next as Dan sat down.
She took a deep breath, swallowed her fear and slowly stood up, trying to ignore how her legs shook beneath her, “I-I’m Chloe Decker, and I want to be in law enforcement because…” she felt her throat tighten as she thought about the reason, and the words died in her throat.
Unfortunately it seemed that same girl who had called her out earlier, was aware of the incident that had occurred only a few months ago. It wasn’t a huge shock, it had been all over every newspaper and tv station when it happened, along with that photo of her at her father’s funeral punching the lens of a paparazzi’s camera, but it still hurt that it was brought up.
“She feels guilty because her daddy was a cop who got shot, so she gave up flashing her boobs for cameras to play cop instead and try to avenge him.”
The words dug into Chloe’s heart like a dagger, and she couldn’t help the tears that sprang to her eyes and made her vision hazy. She felt so humiliated and hurt that all she could do was stand there in stunned silence, hearing a mix of laughter and shocked gasps erupt from her other classmates.
“Chloe-“ Dan tried to get her attention by touching her arm again, but Chloe ignored him.
She could feel her throat tightening, and knew that if she didn’t get out of here then she was going to break down right there, and she didn’t want to give the satisfaction to the bully. So she just shoved her way past Dan and hurried down the stairs to exit the lecture hall.
“Decker, come back!” she heard the professor calling, but she ignored him and kept walking as quickly as she could as the tears began to escape her eyes and roll down her cheeks.
She glanced around, desperately searching for somewhere she could hide and calm down, and spotted a sign up ahead for restrooms. Chloe kept walking in that direction, her head bowed so as to hide how upset she was.
But that turned out to be a mistake as she soon collided with someone and nearly ended up on the ground, but a hand quickly grabbed her and stopped her falling.
“Watch where you’re-“the voice began, sounding annoyed then it paused and adopted a more friendly tone, “-Detective!”
Chloe made the mistake of looking up as she heard the increasingly familiar voice, and her teary, red tinted eyes met the dark ones of none other than Lucifer Morningstar. She noticed his eyes soften into what may have been sympathy as he took in her red eyes and tear stained cheeks.
“Chloe…are you alright?”
It was the first time that he had used her first name, and annoyingly it made Chloe’s heart flutter like when he’d called her detective earlier and moments ago. She quickly pulled out of his grip and rubbed her eyes as casually as she could, “I-I’m fine.” She mumbled, trying to edge past him but he stopped her by putting a hand on her shoulder.
“No you’re not, you’re…crying.” His sympathetic tone would have been endearing, if Chloe wasn’t certain he was only doing this to get her to like him, so he could have sex with her.
She firmly pulled away again, forcing herself to meet his eyes to try and prove she was fine, “W-why do you even c-care?” she growled, hiding her hurt with anger because the last person she wanted to break down in front of was this narcissistic douche.
It seemed Chloe had actually managed to leave Lucifer at a loss for words as he struggled to respond, “I-uhm-“
“That’s what I thought. You don’t, you just want to get in my pants. So kindly leave me alone.” She shoved past him, and this time he didn’t stop her leaving.
Chloe hurried on past him to her original planned location, quickly entering the thankfully-empty bathroom. Even though it was empty, she proceeded to lock herself in a stall anyway so she was out of sight in case anyone else came in.
Once she was hidden away, Chloe sat herself on the closed toilet lid and hid her face in her hands as the bully’s words played over again in her head, making her heart ache and her eyes water once more. Normally bullies didn’t get to Chloe, but she was in such a sensitive place right now with her father gone, that any mention of him drove her to tears whether she liked it or not.
She sat there, silently grieving for a few moments before pulling herself together, realizing that she may not have broken down in front of the bully, but by leaving and hiding in the bathroom she was still letting her win.
‘Your dad wouldn’t want you crying over him all the time’ She told herself as she wiped her eyes, ‘He’d want you to be strong and prove to the bully that she can’t hurt you.’
And with that knowledge in mind, Chloe blew her nose, took a deep breath and exited the stall, striding to the sink and splashing some water on her face to freshen up a bit. She looked over her face, noticing that it wasn’t too noticeable that she’d just broken down; her eyes were still tinted red but could only be seen if someone was very close to her.
“You’ve got this.” She whispered to herself as she walked out of the bathroom and back to the lecture hall. Thankfully she hadn’t gone too far, so didn’t get lost on her way back and didn’t bump into Lucifer either.
She was a bit flattered that he seemed to have been concerned for her, but knowing how he was, Chloe was certain it was false and he was just trying to get her to like him so he could have sex with her. Having sex with ‘the girl from hot tub high school with the nice boobs’ would definitely add a notch to his belt, and she was not going to give him that satisfaction.
Chloe paused momentarily outside the lecture hall as she reached it, her courage wavering slightly but she heard her dad’s voice in her head, telling her to be brave and she took a deep breath, squared her shoulders and held her head high as she re-entered the classroom.
The professor thankfully hadn’t started teaching yet, they were just finishing the introduction exercise, but the classroom still fell silent when Chloe entered, aside from some giggles and murmurs from the back of the class where the bully and her gang resided. But Chloe ignored them and returned to her seat, not giving them a second glance as she sat down and turned to her notebook as the professor began writing on the chalkboard at the front, avoiding eye contact with Dan whose eyes she could feel on her.
“Are you okay?” he asked softly, keeping his hands to himself this time.
Chloe nodded, determinedly focusing on the chalkboard and not looking at Dan so he couldn’t see her red eyes, “Fine, just needed to use the bathroom.” She lied, even though it had been fairly obvious she'd been upset. But her pride kept her from telling the truth.
Dan wasn’t convinced and just raised an eyebrow, “Alright…well if what that girl said is true then I’m…I’m really sorry.”
Chloe kept her eyes fixed straight ahead, now to hide the slight dampness her eyes had acquired from Dan’s words. She took a subtle deep breath to retain her composure, “It’s alright…it was a while ago, I’m over it.” She had never told such a big lie, and she didn’t know why she was lying. Dan seemed sweet and was just trying to be nice, but Chloe’s lack of trust in people made her fearful that it was just an act and he was just like Lucifer and only trying to get with her; so her emotional walls remained up as much as she wanted to let them down.
Dan seemed to take the hint and fell silent, also turning his attention to the chalkboard and beginning to take notes.
2 hours later and the class was over.
Thankfully it had mostly just been copying down notes, with minimal class participation so no other humiliating or upsetting incidents took place.
The content was interesting, but Chloe found it hard to focus after what happened at the start of class, coupled with the fact that it was early in the morning and she’d had a late night; maybe she should have taken Lucifer’s flask offering earlier.
The professor excused them and Chloe got to her feet and quickly began shoving her things away in her bag, wanting to get out of there before the bully had another chance to speak to her. She was aware it was a cowardly move, but she really wasn’t in the state to have more insults thrown at her. But next class she would be ready to fight back if necessary.
“See you next class.” Dan smiled as she edged past him to the stairs and she finally met his eyes with her own weak smile.
“Yeah, see you.” Then she hurried down the stairs to the exit, but before she could get there she was stopped by the professor.
“Decker, can I see you for a minute?” Chloe sighed internally, sure she was in trouble she hurrying out of class like she had, and she slowly trudged over to his desk at the front of the room, ignoring the snickers from her classmates as they all filed out of the room, leaving her and the professor alone.
“Yes professor?” she asked meekly
The professor actually looked sympathetic rather than angry, which confused Chloe, until he spoke, “I just wanted to say that I am very sorry about what happened to your father. I actually worked with him back in the day and he was a wonderful man.”
Chloe quickly felt a lump form in her throat and she swallowed hard to try and get rid of it, really wanting to retain her composure in front of her professor so she didn’t get a reputation for being weak; which she certainly wasn’t.
“T-thank you professor.” She managed to get out in response, her voice only trembling slightly, her eyes not quite meeting his, “H-he really…was.”
“I will be having a word with those classmates who were unkind about it to you. There is no excuse for such hurtful behaviour.” The professor added but Chloe interrupted him.
“While I-I appreciate your sympathy professor, I don’t need you to do that. I can fight m-my own battles.” Her voice was firm despite the slight tremor, desperate to prove that she was not weak and was capable of becoming a cop just like her dad.
The professor nodded with a slight smile, “I understand, okay I won’t say anything but if it happens again I may have to punish them through their assignment marks in future.”
Chloe managed a smile back, nodding in approval and awkwardly adjusting her backpack, assuming that was the end of the conversation but before she could leave, he added, “Don’t take notice of what they say, Chloe. I think you certainly have what it takes to be a cop, as long as you work hard and learn to handle your emotions a bit better, you’ll make it.”
Now her smile widened, becoming more genuine. Hearing those words from a retired cop, one who worked with her dad no less, meant the world to her. Chloe felt so uncertainly about this career path change, unsure if she would be able to make it but hearing that someone other than her mom believed in her, made all the difference.
"Thank you professor. I'll make my dad proud."