Title: Spice, Snails, Everything Nice And Puppydog Tail
Warning: Gender-sensitive issue, such as transgenders and homosexuality, though technically the main relationship in this is heterosexual.
Disclaimer: The plot, characters, story in its entirety are the original creations of Crazywriter.
Summary: Lisa, a college freshman and daughter of a fundamentalist televangelist, meets Shep, who she falls head over heels for and thinks is the perfect guy… the only problem is he wasn't always male.
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Author's note: I know, yell at me for starting another story when I should be working on others but the idea hit me last night!
Chapter One: Damsel In Distress
Sugar and spice and everything nice,
That's what little girls are made of.
Snips and snails and puppydog tails,
That's what little boys are made of.
The wind blew furiously through the trees, blowing leaves off of them and scattering those already on the ground around, mixing the new with the old. The sun shined brilliantly against the azure autumn sky. A bitter chill bit at the day, the start of a frost covered the grounds of the Mankato State University, and Lisa Redding could not find her class.
She stopped a second to get her bearings and looked around. "All right," she whispered to herself, running her hand through her chin length blonde hair. Her brown eyes landed on the clock tower, which she tried to use as a compass. "Let's try… this way!" She took off to the right, and promptly slipped on the frosted sidewalk. Muttering to herself, she pulled her body into a kneeling position and started gathering her books. A hand extended her textbook and she followed it up to look into the face of a handsome young man.
"Are you all right, miss?" he asked, concern on his face. Lisa tried to compose herself, but a pair of brilliant green eyes shook her slightly. The black-haired youth seemed to take her silence as an admission of illness. "That was some fall, are you all right?" he asked again. She nodded and took the book.
"Thanks, but I'm fine…" she told him. He stood up and extended his hand to help her up.
"That's good," he said as he pulled her up. She noted he was tall, that he had at least a foot on the five foot two Lisa. "But if you want, I can carry you to the infirmary." She laughed slightly and shook her head.
"No, no, that's not needed. But I suppose if you wanted to, you could carry me to my class… That is, if you find it. I sure can't."
He looked at the textbook she was carrying. "Developmental psych?" he asked. She nodded. "I'll take you there, it's in Armstrong, I'm going there anyway." She smiled.
"By the way," he said extending his hand. She took it and shook. "I'm Lucien Shepton, but everyone calls me Shep."
"I'm Lisa Redding, but everyone calls me… Lisa," she finished lamely, cringing at how bad it sounded. To her relief, Shep laughed good-naturedly.
"All right then, Lisa," he said, "To class." And before she knew what happened, Shep had picked her up.
"What are you doing?" she exclaimed, shrieking with laughter.
"You told me to carry you to class," Shep explained innocently. He set her down. "What? Did I misunderstand you?"
"Yes!" she protested, giggling at his faked baffled look.
"But you said if I didn't carry you to the infirmary, I could to class," he explained slowly and earnestly.
"My god," she said, unable to not smile at him, "I've known you for less than five minutes and I want to hit you already… are you this charming to all the ladies?"
Shep drew himself up and ran his hand through his parted ear length black hair, tossing it back, "I am no charmer, miss, I am a gentleman."
Lisa couldn't help but grin at the teasing look on Shep's face. "How about you walk me to class then?" He nodded.
"Right this way, madam," Shep answered, offering her his arm. She took it.
"Thank you, good sir," she said back, her voice fond. She was already fond of him. What are you doing, she scolded herself, you barely even know this guy!
"Who says chivalry is dead?" he asked. She smiled at him.
"Of course it isn't- you ought be a knight of the round table," she teased.
"I applied," he joked, "But my ACT scores were too low." She laughed, and Shep thought to himself that her laughter was kind of like snowflakes, soft and light.
"All the better," she replied, "Because now you're here to be my knight in shining armor."
"Aye, milady," he replied. "I would scorn the round table but to wear your favor in battle fair."
"Oh speak again, good sir knight," she teased. "So, what is your major now that you're just my personal knight? I'm afraid I can't pay you very well, so you best keep up with it."
He reached over and tapped her psychology book. "Psychology, and I'm also getting my certificate of gerontology."
"Wow," she said, "I'm impressed. What do you want to do?"
"I want to be a geriatric psychologist. I just… I mean, there's just so much interesting about it, and I think I could help people. You know, suicide is more common in the elderly than adolescents." He grinned quickly, "But that's a depressing topic. What do you want to be when you grow up?"
"I'm a theatre arts major," she said, blushing slightly. "I want to act."
"An actress?" he grinned. "No wonder you humor me." She glanced at him and his eyes were twinkling. She liked him, she really did.
"I'm not humoring you," she said, "You're funny. And sweet."
Shep felt himself smile again. "You're sweet too," he said. He felt himself blushing so he changed the topic, "What year are you?"
"I'm a freshman," she said, "You?"
"I'm a sophomore and a half," he said, "I took a semester off to experience some news things, and I'm a transfer student."
"That's cool, I mean, you get a little more, I don't know… life experience." She smiled, "I mean, what's all the education in the world without that? Where'd you transfer from?"
"University Wisconsin at La Crosse," he said, "I wanted to be a teacher but somewhere on the road I changed my mind." Not to mention my life, he thought painfully. He stopped, "Well, Lady Lisa, we arrive at yonder classroom."
"Many thanks, Knight," she grabbed her notebook and wrote down her dorm room and phone number. "Here is my favor, wear it in battle." Shep took it and grinned before writing his on a portion of the paper and ripping it off.
"And here is my shield so all the ladies in waiting will know I ride for you," he said.
"Farewell, good sir," Lisa told him. He smiled, and starting walking away, backwards.
"Fare thee well, milady! I go into battle, but I shall not fall so long as I wear your favor!" Lisa smiled at him and walked in the classroom.
Shep walked down the empty hall, sighing happily. It had been a long time since he had felt this happy…
A long time.