Author's Note: Remember me? Yeah, I know. Loooong overdue update. I poured my heart into this chapter, so I really hope it doesn't disappoint.


Chapter Three

"Each moment of a happy lover's hour is worth an age of dull and common life."
--Aphra Behn



It took no longer than forty-five minutes for the rumours of Asher's impromptu visit to Madison's room to spread like wild fire throughout the student body. The wheels of the gossip machine were turning and neither of the aforementioned people was aware of what would be set in motion…

"Did you hear? The rugby team walked in on Asher Greaves and Madison Parker doing it in her dorm room!"

Confused. "Doing what?"

Growl. "Oh, for the love of- do I really have to spell it out for you? They were caught in a very compromising position. In her bed!"

Gasp. "No way!"

"I know! I never would have put them two together, not in a million years."

"I didn't think Madison had it in her! I mean she's so shy around anyone she doesn't really know."

Laughter. "Well, they do say that it's the quiet ones you have to watch out for!"

"And who would have thought Asher would go for someone like Madison? I thought his type for the tall big-breasted bimbos in the travel course."

"Maybe there is hope for us all then!"

"Dude, I'm not making this up! I watched Brian Colby slam Asher Greaves against the wall. It was intense!"

"Woah, man! What's got Brian's panties in a twist to take Asher on like that?"

"I think it was something about Brian's girlfriend again. I only heard part of it, it happened so fast. She's probably off banging anything that is male and has a pulse. He thought Asher was the new guy."

Laughter. "Dumb ass. I heard Asher was digging that short chick on the history course. You know, the one who is friends with Brian's girlfriend. Brian and a load of the guys from the rugby team caught them in the act!"

"Dude, you mean Madison Parker?"

"Yeah, man. She's cute in that whole studious bookworm type of way."

"I certainly wouldn't complain if she threw it my way. Lucky Asher."

High five.

It had been four days since that fateful day Asher had tumbled through her window, and Madison was feeling much better. Her cold had finally lifted; leaving her with only a mild chesty cough that hardly bothered her anymore.

Opening up her window, Madison took a deep breath of the fresh air that gushed into her dorm room and smiled. Finally, she was able to get out of bed and stay standing without the world teetering around her. She hadn't had the strength to leave her dorm since the rude intrusion.

Moving away from the open window, she picked her way through the explosion of teddies to her wardrobe and flung it open. Next task on her list: Get out of these damned pyjamas. Snaking out of her pyjama top (that had a charming little cow munching on grass and had the words Mad Cow beneath them), she scanned the hangers for a decent top to wear that was warm but fashionable. There was no point in going for the cute little vest tops if she was going to attract a cold all over again.

Reaching for a slim-fitting pale blue sweater, a groan rose up from outside her window and suspicious scrabbling.

Oh, GOD no! This could not be happening all over again.

Turning slowly to face the window, she spied a head of silky-dark hair popping over the top of the windowpane, and Asher Greaves glared at her with watery bloodshot eyes. He looked a rather pitiful sight. "Madison, sweetheart," he growled, wiping at a runny nose in disgust. "What the hell have you done to me?"

Madison yelped and threw the top she was holding at Asher and then belatedly realised she was now standing in only her Pyjama pants and her turquoise bra. Glancing down at herself, she paled. "Oh."

Asher caught the top in mid-air with one hand and slid into the room with little difficulty. Madison figured the ease came with the practise he seemed to be getting lately.

Stalking foreword, he backed Madison up against the door of her closet with just one look. She gulped loudly and she lifted her chin to stare up at him, modesty forgotten as fear set in. The guy looked like he wanted to wring her neck…

Scrunching her eyes up, she prepared herself for her doom. Instead, he snatched her hand that had mysteriously found itself pressing against his chest in a feeble attempt to ward him off and pushed her top into her hand. Her eyes sprang open as he stepped away. Eyes flicking between the top and his face, she hastily slid it on and wrapped her arms around her self. This was so damn embarrassing! "May I ask why you didn't use the door this time?"

"Because I didn't fee like it," he waved her questioning to the side like an annoying fly. "The real problem is what you have done to me!" he gestured to his face and Madison had to bite her lip from laughing out loud. His leaking eyes, his red nose, and his sweaty face pretty much summed up what he was talking about. He looked like Madison four days ago.

"I don't know what you're trying to get at." She mumbled as she looked away.

"Oh yes you do." He cried indignantly. "Just look at me! You made me sick!"

Madison shrugged nonchalantly, suppressing the stray bit of sympathy struggling to well up in her heart. Colds were pretty nasty, weren't they? "Your own fault," she muttered. "You're the one who crawled in through my window and threw yourself at me." She huffed. "That is all your doing."

Asher gave her a long calculating look before he stepped forward, invading her personal space once again. Madison watched him with a small no amount of trepidation. She never really noticed it before, but he could be a little intimidating when he wanted to be. "Is that so? Well, if you are so nonchalant about it then have your germs back."

With that passing shot, he wrapped her up in his arms and delivered a suffocating hug of doom. "Gah! What the heck is wrong with you?! Get off of me!" She wriggled in a futile effort to escape but it was no use. The guy was a lot stronger than he looked. Either way, he must have some sixth sense when it came to violence and women as he expertly dodged the punch that she aimed at his shoulder. Letting her go, he danced out of her reach.

"Alright, no need to get hostile about it. I was just returning the favour." He blinked at her for a moment before grinning brightly. "Oh, I almost forgot. I brought your clothes back for you, freshly laundered of course." He walked back to the window, and leaned over to grab a pile of clothes. "Ta da!"

Madison hastily fumbled with the clothes that were thrown at her. "Er, thank you I guess." She set them on her desk to be sorted out later. Madison hadn't actually expected to see Asher again, let alone remember to bring her clothes back.

"No problem, it's the least I could-" he was interrupted by a loud sneeze that nearly toppled him over. "Oh God, I think I'm dying." He groaned and sneezed another two times.

Madison rolled her eyes with a click of her tongue against her teeth. "Oh, please. It's a cold, not the plague. You should have stayed in bed instead of traipsing across campus and climbing through my window for the second time." What is it with men and being dramatic when they were sick? Honestly. Blowing a piece of her hair out of her eyes, she grabbed his arm and began steering him towards the door. "Now, I suggest you go back to your bed, dose yourself up on painkillers and just relax. Relax means no more playing at James Bond. Do you think you can handle that?"

Madison was met with resistance from Asher as he pulled her back. She stumbled and he was quick to catch her. "Hey, you're the one who got me sick in the first place-"

"Excuse me?!"

"So you should be the one to nurse me back to stunning health."

She was beginning to develop a nasty twitch under her left eye. "Nurse you?"

Asher nodded determinedly. "Yep."

Madison sputtered indignantly before laughing. "Right. Okay."

Asher blinked at her reply. "Wait, you will?"

She poked him in the chest. "Like hell I will. Why don't you get one of your fan club to nurse you back to health?"

Asher scratched the back of his head in a sheepish action. "Well, that is just it. No one will come near me when I look like the living dead and all."

Madison bit her lip to stifle the words that had nearly slipped from her mouth. Even with all the symptoms of sickness he looked good. Damn good, actually. Either way, she could sympathise with him. Her friends had mysteriously dropped off the face of the Earth as soon as she got the sniffles. "Well, I'll just go and find Nina. I'm sure she will love to play nurse for you. I even think she has the nurse's outfit." She was just about to head out of the door to track her friend down when Asher grabbed her arm in a tight hold.

"No!" The force of his protest stopped her in her tracks and she raised an eyebrow in question. He cleared his throat and lowered his voice. "I mean no, that's fine. You'll do for my nurse."

Madison narrowed her eyes in contemplation. What the hell was wrong with him? "Did you and Nina have a fight or something? Is that why you don't want me to get her?"

Asher shrugged his shoulders nonchalantly and finally let go of her. She conspicuously rubbed at her arm. "Nah, we mutually decided to end our arrangement. Last time was too much of a close call."

Madison gritted her teeth at his blasé attitude to what happened, but she swallowed her anger like a bitter pill. It was all in the past now. There wasn't anything she could do about it. "Understandable." She intoned flatly.

"I had a feeling you would approve," he flashed her a watery smile that soon vanished in a single moment. "So, have you… seen anyone recently? Your friends, perhaps?"

"Huh?" Now Madison was confused. What kind of questions were these anyway? "No, I haven't seen anyone yet. I haven't been properly well until today. Why do you ask?"

Asher lifted a shoulder. "No reason. I was just wondering A cute little thing like yourself should have been looked after, that's all."

God damn it, Madison had to go and blush like a little girl. "Thank you, but that still doesn't mean I'm going to nurse you."

Asher sighed as he shook his head disappointedly. "You're a cruel woman, Miss Madison Parker." He shuffled towards the bed and before she could even think of protesting he was already sprawled all over it. "If I had intentionally spread my germs around, I would have at least at least had the decency to make them feel better."

Huh. "Okay, a) I didn't intentionally spread my germs around, you tackled me to my bed. That hardly constitutes 'intentionally spreading my germs', thank you very much. And b) why the hell would should I be nice to someone who has humiliated me in front of the rugby team?"

Ahser's head lifted off of the pillow to peer at her. "Because I'm charming?"

Madison threw her hands up in the air in defeat. "I just can't win with you, can I?"

"Not really," he offered congenially. He lifted his arms up in a sweeping gesture. "So, where do you want me?"

Madison knew his words were meant to embarrass her or make her fall all over him in wanton lust but she just raised her eyebrows at him. "You can take the bed since you already planted your butt there."

He stared suspiciously at her for a moment. "I can….take the bed? Um, why?"

She began picking up her wash bag and a set of fresh clothes to change into. "Because I haven't got around to changing my sheets yet, so it can't do any harm, can it?"

"How generous of you," he kicked his shoes off and crawled under the covers to get nice and comfy. "Where are you off to? I thought you were going to make me feel better?"

"I'm going to have a shower since I still feel icky." She responded. "So please, make yourself comfortable and I will be back to administer some medicine." With a rather wicked grin and a curtsy, she headed to her bathroom.

"Whatever you say princess," came the reply.

She shut the door on him and couldn't muster the strength to smother the smile that tugged at her lips.

"Hello, you have reached the answering service of Madison Parker. I'm sorry I am unable to take your call right now but if you would like to leave your name and number I will get back to you as soon as I can."


"Hey Maddi, it's Nina here. I just wanted to call and say thank you for covering for me in the whole Asher incident. Seriously, you saved my bacon big time. Brian was raving about your honour and had completely forgotten about why he was chasing Asher in the first place. Your quick thinking got me out of a very tight bind. Though I have to admit, I was a little surprised you went along with the Asher's 'I'm Madison's boyfriend' thing. I can't really picture you two together. He's a ladie's man and you're… well, you're Madison. I was always under the impression that you were a vir-…heh, never mind. Either way, thanks for everything. Remind me the next time we are out for coffee to buy you those raspberry muffins you love so much. Love you!"

"Hello, you have reached the answering service of Madison Parker. I'm sorry I am unable to take your call right now but if you would like to leave your name and number I will get back to you as soon as I can."


"Hiya honey, it's the love your life speaking. Adam, in case you have any doubts. Here I was thinking you were laid up in bed with a nasty cold, probably hacking up a lung and sneezing brain juice and what not. So imagine my surprise when I hear through the grape vine that you have been having hanky panky with the bodacious babe known as Asher Greaves! Whatever happened to the sisterhood? I know I am a guy, but seriously, I am a honorary member! I have earned my right. You were supposed to tell me about these things! The next time we meet up I demand to know the details. I want to know how he rocks your world!"

"Hello, you have reached the answering service of Madison Parker. I'm sorry I am unable to take your call right now but if you would like to leave your name and number I will get back to you as soon as I can."


"….Is it my turn to speak now? God, I hate these answering machines. Madison? This is your mother speaking. Remember me? You haven't got in touch with me in over a week. Is everything alright? You have never missed a phone call before… You haven't me a boy, have you?"

"Hello, you have reached the answering service of Madison Parker. I'm sorry I am unable to take your call right now but if you would like to leave your name and number I will get back to you as soon as I can."


"Madison? Adam again… YOU ARE DATING ASHER GREAVES NOW?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?"

In all her life, Madison didn't think she had ever been this angry before, this…violated.

Anger was beginning to boil over as she proceeded to march down the hallway towards Asher's dorm room. He had spent most of the day curled up in her bed, fast asleep. She had spent most of that time at her desk, catching up with all the work she had missed and occasionally glancing at him to make sure he was okay. When the clock told her it was fast approaching six in the evening, she had woken him up and urged him to go back to his dorm or go and eat something. He left with only a few half-hearted grumbles.

It was only then that she had noticed the blinking red light on her phone that told her she had new messages. Hearing each one, her face had steadily gotten redder and redder.

Asher. And. Madison. A. COUPLE?

The hell?

This was beyond a joke. As if it wasn't already humiliating enough to have been caught by a bunch of blockheads in bed with a scoundrel, but actually dating him? Couldn't people see how ridiculous the very idea of them together was?

Of course it was ridiculous! Even her best friends had been completely flummoxed by the idea. Adam had found it endlessly amusing that 'such a sweet innocent, though often violent, girl was now supposedly dating the biggest man whore on campus'.

"I couldn't believe it when I heard about it. I thought people were exaggerating." The excitement in his voice wasn't lost over the static of the phone.

Madison groaned. "But we aren't dating! I can't believe people have jumped to conclusions about this whole matter. I didn't know the rugby team were a bunch of fish wives in disguise."

There was a pause on Adam's side and then he laughed lowly.

Madison's eyebrows furrowed in confusion. "What? What are you laughing at?"

"Oh dear. This just keeps getting better and better. It was Asher that told Brian you guys were dating."

Madison felt her blood run cold in her veins. "He what?"

"He told Brian you guys were in lurve. You're going to be public enemy number one to a lot of girls. Asher doesn't date period. Don't you feel special?"

The phone call ended pretty quickly after that. Madison was determined to find Asher and wring his damn neck until he was whimpering and begging her to spare his useless corpse. After scaring the crap out of a first year that she had often seen trailing after Asher like a dutiful worshipper, she finally got the number of Asher's room and proceeded to stomp her way up there to get some answers.

Metal music blared from inside a dorm room and Madison wasn't really surprised that it was the one she was searching for. Straightening up to her full-height, she hammered on the door with her fist until the music was turned down and she heard shuffling from within. The door opened to reveal a tall guy with expertly messed blonde hair and intelligent eyes behind thin wire-framed glasses.

He smiled when he saw her standing there. "Hey, you must be Madison."

Madison was a little taken aback by the friendly welcome. Just what the hell was Asher spreading now? "Um, yes. Is Asher here?"

The guy stepped aside and inclined his head for her to come in. Asher was standing in the middle of the room, frozen to the spot and looking like a deer caught in the headlights of an on-coming truck. If Madison wasn't so pissed at that moment, she might have thought that the expression on his face was pretty hilarious.

Her eyes narrowed shrewdly on him and she crossed her arms over her chest and cocked her hip to the side like a genuine diva. "Hello lover. Might I have a private chat with you?"

Asher whimpered.

To Be Continued.

Phew! Finally, chapter three is done. It didn't take long to write, but I had so much to do to finish up my second year of university that I couldn't update until now! But University is over until next year; so regular updates will now proceed.

See you guys in two weeks!