I'm the good girl. I promise. I'm a straight-A student, and I'm ranked three in Jenkins High. I've never missed a day of school, and I've been nominated for—and won—the Best Student Award for three years straight. I've won violin and piano competitions across the state, and every summer, I travel to Europe with a youth orchestra. I'm a good girl.

So why, oh why, am I sitting here on a couch in a foreign home, half-drunk out of my mind, kissing a hot guy I just met?

Oops. That's right. That's Kathleen Long on that couch, making out with that guy. Believe it or not?

We were kissing on the couch amid the raucous music and laughter of the party. The sun had long set, and the clock had long ticked past midnight. Right now, I should have been in bed. But I wasn't.

I'd never been kissed before. I'm the good girl, remember? I'd never dated, never had guys after me. So this experience was new—even if I was drunk out of my mind and having trouble remembering exactly where I was.

His tongue slipped into my mouth, and I recoiled with a gasp. But he brought his lips back on mine quickly, and his hand roamed.

After a moment, I pulled away.

"Not here?" he muttered, glancing around. "Want to go upstairs?"

Having trouble understanding him, I nodded dumbly. He took my hand and led me through the crowd and up the stairs, down a long hall of rooms.

"In here," he said, pushing open the last door on the left. He took my hand and closed the door.

And then everything was black.



Really, the nerve of that girl, to pass out on him! He stared at her in the bed, completely oblivious to the noise emanating from downstairs. She wasn't anything gorgeous, but she'd been willing and alone. He thought he'd have some fun that night, but now that she'd passed out, it looked like he wasn't going to have any.

He yawned and rubbed his eyes. The clock by the bed read 3:00 in the morning. He was getting tired of the chaos downstairs.

Glancing back at her one last time, he closed the door and headed downstairs to kick the partygoers out. It was way too late for them to still be in his house.

"Hey, Max!" a guy called, saluting him with a beer. "Great party!"

"Get out!" Max yelled over the music. "Party's over, get out!" He pounded the guy on the back and gave him a friendly shove to the door. He made his way through the dancers and flipped off the pounding music.

The protesting cry was unanimous. "Aw! Max, turn that back on!"

"I'm tired. You guys get out of here." He rubbed his eyes again and started to shoo the people closest to him out the door. "If you're too drunk to drive, get someone else to drive you!"

When they were finally gone, he sighed and resolved to call the maids in when morning came. The place was a mess, and he felt sick just looking at it. Hosting parties was always fun, until it got to clean-up.

When he returned to his room, the girl showed no signs of waking up any time soon. Maybe I will have a little fun tonight, he thought. He stripped off his shirt, and, after a moment of deliberation, decided to keep his pants on. After all, it was weird to be almost naked in bed with a stranger he hadn't even slept with.

He slipped under the covers and was asleep in seconds.



I woke up to darkness and flung my hand around, seeking the clock on the nightstand…by the bed?

Where was it? I groped for the drawers, forcing my eyes to adjust. After a moment, I could just see the beginnings of dawn creeping through the shutters.

Shutters. Shutters? My room didn't have shutters. And where was that nightstand?

No nightstand. Foreign shutters. Only conclusion: this was not my room.

Then whose was it?

I sat up. The bed felt different too. There was a headboard, which I clearly did not remember on my bed. I started to push myself up and felt my hand fall on something hard.

And warm.

And breathing.

Oh…oh no.

No. No, no, no, no, no.

It couldn't be...could it?

Almost afraid to look, I craned my neck very, very slowly down to the bed—

—and there, lying by my side, was the guy from the party, fast asleep.


If we were in a bed together, did that mean…?


When I moved again, he stirred and yawned, stretching his arms over his head. Opening his eyes, he saw my still form and propped himself up on an elbow, as if nothing were wrong. And something was definitely, definitely wrong.

"Good morning," he said amiably.

I could only stare at him in shock.

"Sleep tight?" he asked, yawning again.


He stared at me curiously. "What's up?"

I licked my lips and said hoarsely, "You…I…We didn't…"

A knowing grin spread across his lips. "Oh, we did." The grin spread as my eyes widened.

My stomach plummeted. "We…?" I couldn't bring myself to finish the sentence.

"Do it? We did."

This must be a dream. A nightmare. I'm about to wake up.

I let out a little nervous laugh."So…did we really?"

He grinned. "Oh yeah."

I pinched myself. "Hehe, I think I'll wake up now."

His eyebrow raised fractionally. "Huh?"

Okay, I'm a little scared now. "Seriously, I want to wake up now." I pinched myself again.

This time he rolled his eyes and laughed. "No matter how many times you pinch yourself, you aren't waking up."

I started to suck in breathy gasps. "Seriously? Seriously?" I pinched myself again and again. "Oh no. Oh NO." Nothing was happening except for my arm turning red. "This cannot be happening."

"Why deny it?" he asked lazily.

"I don't even know you!" I cried, hyperventilating now. My mom would kill me if she found out! I should be in bed! What if she already knew? What if she was waiting for me at home? I was dead. My life was over!

All right. Calm down. "What if… what if I'm…" I couldn't say it.

He guessed the words right out of my mind. "Pregnant? Don't worry, we used protection."

"What if I have…"

"An STD?" He chuckled. "I sure don't have any. I'm the one who should be worried."

"Well, it's your fault for preying on innocent girls!" I accused, trying to wrap my mind around what I had just done. What we had just done.

He laughed, his eyes twinkling. "Hang on, now, I wouldn't say you were innocent! You were all willing!"

"I don't remember any of it!" I defended. "You attacked me!"

He held up his hands in a gesture of peace. "Well, you were pretty drunk, my dear. I wouldn't expect you to remember much."

Drunk. How convenient. "All I remember…" I tried to think, but my head was still a little fuzzy. "All I remember is…"

He grinned, all full of teeth. "Well, we were kissing on the couch. I asked you if you wanted to go upstairs, and you said yes. Then we walked upstairs…" He demonstrated on his bed with his index and middle fingers walking like they were legs. "Then you know what happened."

"I…I don't remember!" The kissing, the stairs…then blackness. "I don't remember anything after the stairs!"

His raised his eyebrows suggestively. "It was memorable."

Then I noticed. My clothes were still on. Which meant…this was a dream, right? If there was contradicting evidence or things that didn't make sense, it was a dream, right?

"Haha!" I laughed, all too eager to prove him wrong. "Look! My clothes are still on! This is a dream." I pulled at my clothes expressively, grinning in his face. "Ha, beat that!"

"I put your clothes back on," he said calmly. "Didn't want you to wake up being freaked out."

I deflated. He had an answer for everything.

Another laugh escaped his lips as he saw the horrified expression on my face. "I'm not lying."

"No. No. No. This cannot be happening."

He shrugged. "I don't care if you don't choose to believe me." He swung out of bed, shirtless. Thank the stars his pants were on. He padded over to his dresser and pulled out a shirt.

"Oh jeez. Oh man." I clutched my head. "My mom is going to kill me! I'm dead! What if she figures out…What if she already knows?" I tried to process my thoughts, but all I could feel was a pit of horror and despair in my stomach, threatening to engulf me. How could everything had gone so wrong? In one night?

He shrugged again. "It isn't that bad."

I checked my watch. "Oh jeez. I have to go. Maybe…maybe I'll get home before she wakes up." I brightened. "Yeah. Maybe I can get in through the window." I slapped my forehead. "But the alarm will wake her up." I groaned. "I'm dead. There's no way I can hide this."

"Why hide it? It's not that bad."

"It's bad," I moaned, closing my eyes. "I'm so dead."

"Don't be such a drama queen. What's a little sleeping around?"

"Ugh," I said, turning away, "I don't even want to speak to you right now. I need to get home." I sighed heavily. Might as well accept the facts: I slept with a complete stranger and ruined my life for good.

I was halfway out the door when he called, sounding as if he was about to explode with laughter. "You know we really didn't, don't you?"



I whipped around so fast I might have broken my neck. "What?!"

He was covering his mouth, the corners of his eyes wrinkled with laughter. "We didn't do anything, you know."

I gaped at him, my mouth gulping air. "But—but, I remember! I remember! You…me…we were kissing! I remember!" At the thought, I could feel his tongue in my mouth again, shocking me. I covered my mouth, revolted.

He was clutching his side in chuckles now. "We did that. Then we staggered upstairs and you collapsed. You know you're the first girl to do that to me, don't you? I was all pumped up, and here you go passing out on me."

"I—I passed out?" I squeaked, hardly daring to believe it. "Really? Really?"

He stuck out his tongue. "We didn't do anything except sleep in the same bed."

For one bristling moment, I was frozen. And then I was positively giddy with excitement. "Yes! Yes! I'm not dead, I'm not dead! I didn't do anything! We didn't do anything!"

A quick burst of laughter escaped his lips. "Are you really that happy that we didn't do anything?"

"Yes!" I shouted, almost feeling like crying. "Absolutely. Aren't you?"

"Who cares?" His glance wandered to the clock. "Don't you have to get going?"

"Oh jeez! I gotta go!" I ran out and, a few seconds later, rocketed back up the stairs. "Uh, which way is out? Your house is scary big."

He laughed and crossed the room, taking a hold of my arm.

"Don't touch," I said testily, pulling away. "Just show me out."

He gave me an amused look. "Afraid I might pull something on you?"

I made a face. "Terrified. Since we haven't done anything, I'd like to keep it that way." He shrugged and led me to the door.

"Here we are." He smiled teasingly. "Come back any time."

"Not likely," I grumbled, bundling up. Light was beginning to filter through the fog and trees, and I shivered. It would be a long walk home. How on earth was I going to explain this?