Bad Luck

(a story by madforfigs) - 2013.7.10

I woke up with gum in my hair, my paper only half done, with thirty minutes until my interview started for my first choice job. It pours rain, I have no umbrella, there are no cabs and I break my favorite pair of heels. The last thing I needed at this moment was for a cranky NYPD officer to search my bag while I watched the subway pull away from the station.

"Syd." I felt someone shake my shoulder. I grunted, waving them away. "Syd." Whoever was bothering me tried poking me harder to get me up, but I was far too comfortable on my bed. "Sydney!" Someone slammed the hard surface next to my head as I shot up in shock, my eyes still blurry from being woken up so suddenly.

Blinking several times as I looked from side to side, I slowly began taking in my surroundings. As my eyes accustomed to the morning light coming through the window, the confusion began setting in. Why was I sitting at my desk in the living room? Why wasn't I in my bed as I had originally assumed? I let my gaze slide down to the desk; I had books sprawled all over the top and my laptop screen was still glowing softly.

That's when reality suddenly came crashing down on me.

The Word document I had open was mockingly staring at me. The thirty second page was littered with gibberish, probably from what I had fallen asleep on my keyboard before rolling off onto the desk. Thirty two pages… out of the forty that was required by my professor. The forty page paper that was due at exactly noon.

"Gabby!" I shrieked, finally managing to find my voice as I looked around frantically for my roommate. "What time is it?!" Panic ran through my body when I realized that she was already completely dressed and essentially ready to go to class. I knew the answer I was about to get was not going to make me feel any better about the terrible situation I had woken up into.

"It's 8:25." She said, and I knew all the blood had rushed out of my face the moment she said that.

"Oh God, oh God, oh God." I moaned and shoved my hands into my hair as I stood up in my chair. This was not a good start to my day; for starters, I had intended on staying up all night to work on a paper for my justice seminar class. At some point during the evening, I must have fallen asleep at my computer and only managed to finish three quarters of the minimum required for the final paper. But to only be part way done… that had to mean that I had fallen asleep well before two in the morning.

How could I possibly have ever let that happen?

"Um, Syd?" I heard her say nervously, scratching her head as she stared at me. "Uh..."

"What?" I snapped, moving to shoulder past her but she quickly grabbed my arm so I couldn't move anywhere else. She picked at a strand of my hair and lifted it so that I could see the lock of hair in front of my eyes. I made a choked noise when I saw what she was pointing out to me.

Right in front of me was a huge wad of gum, entangled in my hair for everyone to see. It wasn't subtle at all, the coral pink contrasting brightly against my dark brown hair. Was this seriously happening right now? "Help me, please." I begged my roommate, as she already began scrounging for a pair of scissors before I had asked for her help. Unfortunately, the wad was stuck relatively close to my scalp, forcing Gabby to cut off more than three quarters of my hair.

"Are you sure about this? We could just try to wash it out; we have about five minutes." She said, hesitating briefly as I saw her place my hair between the two blades.

Wait… five minutes?

"What do you mean by five minutes?" I asked her, pushing her away so I could see her entire face. "I only have to do-"

Oh, lord.

I stopped midsentence, knowing exactly what it was that Gabby was referring to. My Deloitte interview was at nine. The morning had only just started, but so much had happened that it made me forget for a brief moment that I had the most important interview of my life in less than half an hour. I'd only been preparing for this interview for weeks and yet, despite all of that, I had completely forgotten about it when it mattered most.

"Gabby, I'm so screwed." I said, the realization dawning on me that this was not going to be a good morning. "I need to get ready, now."

"Wait!" she yelled after me as I ran towards my room. "The gum in your hair! You honestly can't go to your interview with that… thing… in your hair. Come over here. There's not enough time to do anything else; we're going to have to cut it off. I don't think the Deloitte recruiter will consider this as an acceptable emergency."

I knew she had a point, but at the same time, I couldn't stand the idea of losing the bangs that always perfectly framed my face, but what option did I have? There was no chance I would get a job offer with a wad of gum stuck in my hair. "Do it." I squeezed my eyes shut as I spoke. "Before I change my mind, hurry up."

I felt her pull my hair, hearing the quick snip as Gabby hastily hacked off my hair. "All done. Are you going to be okay? Do you need anything else before I go to class?" I opened my eyes just in time to see her move towards the front door, throwing out the lock of hair she had just cut. While it was a painful memory that I wished never had happened, I had far more important things in my life to worry about… including the job interview that could forever change my future.

It was a job as a consultant that offered sixty grand annually as a starting salary. Sixty thousand dollars. I would be able to pay back my loans from undergraduate school and the debt I was digging myself into now with graduate school without asking for a penny from my parents.

A bad hair day was nothing in comparison to what would happen if I didn't get to this interview on time.

"It's okay – I was the one who fucked up. You don't need to be late on my behalf. Go!"

She grinned as she yelled a 'good luck' to me, the door slamming shut behind her as she ran out of the dorm. I glanced down at my watch – 8:30 AM. I needed to leave now, especially considering how the commute to the building was exactly twenty two minutes and I still had to get dressed for this damn interview.

Why did I have to be so stupid, thinking that I could crank about approximately forty pages of my paper in eighteen hours without falling asleep?

I threw on my designated interview clothes and heels, brushing my hair out so that it wasn't obvious I had fallen asleep on my face. I thanked the fact that I had already prepared everything after dinner last night so all I had to do was grab everything and run out the door.

At exactly 8:35, I was flying out of the front door of my dorm building and running towards the subway station that was a ten minutes away from where I lived. But the moment I set foot out of the stairs, the skies immediately opened up and rain began pouring down on me. "Fuck!" I cursed to myself, realizing that I hadn't even taken the time to check the weather. Lucky me, I didn't have an umbrella on me. With this particular commute, I'd have to walk outside for a grand total of fifteen minutes. That was not something I was willing to do, especially considering I was already having a bad hair day.

Because of the fact I lived right around the corner from Broadway, I knew there would always be a barrage of taxis barreling down the avenue. If I could just grab a taxi, I wouldn't have any problems getting to my interview on time. In fact, it would only take about fifteen minutes to get there, with the morning traffic.

Plenty of time.

I walked up to the roadside, trying to flag down a cab. Unfortunately, none of the cabs were available and simply drove faster when they passed by me. I grumbled to myself, noting the fact that I was getting wetter with every passing second. The rain seemed to be falling harder and harder with no sign of giving up any time soon. I knew I was drenched by now, but none of it seemed to matter.

As the cars continued to move, I realized that this was simply not working. I couldn't seem to be able to get a cab, and time was not slowing down for me at the moment. I had wasted a grand total of five minutes attempting to get a cab and I knew that no matter what happened I was going to be late.

Cursing everything about my life, I began running down the sidewalks of Broadway as quickly as I could. If I sprinted, I could probably make it to the Bleecker Street station in about five minutes. I knew people were judging me from under the safety of their umbrellas, but I didn't care. None of them had their futures hanging by a thread. I needed this interview to go smoothly or else I'd have to completely restart my job search. At this point in time with graduation only five months away, I wanted a job under my belt so I could focus on my final semester.

Just as I thought that maybe I had control over the morning mayhem, I felt my ankle twist beneath me. A brief, sharp pain travelled through my ankle, but it was nothing serious. I had heard something crack; luckily it hadn't been my bone. Hopping as gracefully as I possibly could, I put a hand against the wall of the closest building and lifted my right foot.

I groaned when I realized what had happened. The heel was unceremoniously hanging off from the sole and I knew that this day officially could not get any worse than it already was. I almost wanted to just give up and call the Deloitte recruiter to throw in the towel. At the rate I was going at, I more than likely wouldn't even be getting the job. The pain and suffering in the past twenty five minutes was enough to deflate my spirit…

Regardless, I pulled out the extra pair of flats I always kept in my bag for emergencies. My friends and family always made fun of me for this apparently weird habit, but now was definitely a time I could say that it was a necessary and useful habit that all women should consider having. I swapped my footwear without hesitation, pushing my defeated thoughts to the back of my mind.

This was not the right mentality for this situation! I kept repeating that to myself over and over again, hoping that eventually, the optimism would transfer over to my actions.

8:42 AM...

This is cutting it way too close. Basically what needed to happen was that the moment I sprinted into the subway station, the train had to be there as well as the transfer train at Brooklyn Bridge. But the possibility of that happening was close to nil. The effort was still needed though.

I cheered to myself when I ran into the subway station, finally shielded from the downpour of rain that hadn't let up the entire time I was outside. I was soaked to the core, my hair a complete mess. At least one good thing came out of being caught in the rain; it was nearly impossible to tell that I had to chop off a large chunk of my bangs.

Hastily, I pulled my wallet out of my bag and walked towards the turnstile. Then… the final straw was drawn and I knew that somebody just wanted me to suffer. "Excuse me, ma'am? Can you come over here for a moment?" an NYPD officer said to me, gesturing towards the plastic table that had been set up next to the turnstiles.

You have got to be kidding me.

I bit my lip, struggling to keep the stream of profanities from spewing out. The last thing I needed to tack onto my resume was an arrest for disorderly conduct. I smiled tersely at the officer that had pulled me aside and walked up to the other officer that was standing idly behind the table.

At least he looked as miserable as I did at the moment. The only difference was that he wasn't losing precious seconds to make it to his dream job interview. "Can you please open your bag?" he asked, staring at me.

"Not like I can do anything about it." I grumbled to myself, tossing my bag onto the table. I checked my watch again: 8:47 AM. I was not making it on time. Now, I had to count on the hopes that maybe the recruiter was running late with interviews.

Couldn't they have taken pity on the girl who looked like a wet rat? Obviously, she was rushing somewhere during the middle of the morning commute rush. Why would they pull people over now? It simply made no sense.

The officer looked through my bag slowly as I tapped the table surface impatiently with my wallet. That was when I heard it – the oh so familiar sound of a subway train approaching the station. Sure enough, I saw the train speed ahead and that was when I became near desperate for this officer to finish whatever it was he was doing. Any logical restraint I had before immediately shot out the window.

"Okay, man, seriously." I snapped, running a hand through my soaked, cold hair. The officer brought his bright blue eyes to mine and the intensity behind his stare almost threw me off, but I managed to maintain my composure. "That," I pointed to the train that was slowly opening its doors to let passengers on and off, "is the train I have to take. If I'm not on that, you're fucking with the biggest career opportunity in my life."

"Well, that's just too bad because it seems like you'll be stuck here with me for the time being until I finish checking your bag." He said, a small smirk twitching on his lips. My eyes flitted over to the subway train and my heart immediately sunk when I realized the doors were sliding shut.

Unfortunately, that small detail was what brought upon an unwarranted amount of anger and probably not my smartest move of the morning…

"Just because you're a pissed off asshole doesn't mean you can take out your frustrations on other people who clearly aren't a menace to society. I've put up with way too much shit to be dealing with your suppressed anger. I still have a final paper to write by noon, I got gum stuck in my hair so my roommate had to cut off a chunk of my hair. Not only that, but I've been scrambling to get to my interview in less than fifteen minutes but the rain made it impossible to get a cab, my heel broke in the middle of the fucking street and now you're stopping me from getting on that stupid motherfucking train. I don't need to put up with your bullshit right now." I retorted, slamming my fists down on the table. The bang caused everyone to look over at me, from the other commuters to the fellow police officer. I froze, realizing that what I had just done was probably not the best thing to say or behave towards an NYPD cop. "Oh my God, shit fuck." I slapped my forehead as soon as the words slipped out. Hadn't I just warned myself not to do this?

"Hey, Stryker, is everything okay there?" the other officer said, his hand slowly shifting to his waistband and the other up to the radio on his shoulder. I tensed up immediately and backed up, accidentally hitting the table. God, so this was how my first arrest was going to happen… I just hadn't realized it would happen so quickly.

"Don't worry about it, Porter. I got this." The officer I now knew as Stryker replied, humor dancing in his eyes. Did he find my stress and frustration amusing? If that was the case, I could wipe that smirk right off his face. Of course, then I would be immediately arrested for assaulting an officer.

Damn the power of the NYPD.

Porter took a step back, but didn't relax his posture. Apparently, I was considered a threat to society. I didn't know if I should be proud of that or not…

"Anger's not gonna get you anywhere in life." Stryker said, sifting through my purse. I saw him take out my day planner, flipping the pages idly.

"Says the angry cop who can get anything he wants with the blink of an eye."

I heard both cops laugh at my comment as Stryker shook his head. "It's not the anger that gets me what I want; it's called power and discipline. I know how to make people do what I say without violence." The smirk on his lips grew, emphasizing his very distinct jawline. "You should try it out some time; then you won't look so suspicious the next time you walk into the subway station."

"It's called being caught in the rain for more than ten minutes, smart ass." Again, I let the name calling happen without any consideration for the consequences. I had gotten away with it once; I didn't know how many times I'd get lucky before Stryker wrote me up.

"You should watch it. You're wearing my patience very thin." He warned, taking his hat off. It was at that moment that I finally had a full view of what he looked like and it was enough to make me momentarily forget where I was and who he was. His dark brown hair was messily combed back, probably due to the hat that he had been wearing since the start of his shift. He ran a hand through it, keeping his sharp blue eyes on me.

My God, a man like this should not be in uniform. It was enough to make any woman melt on the spot.

He placed his hat back, shadowing the distinct features on his face. I had been temporarily thrown off by how attractive he was that I hadn't realized I still had an interview to get to. "Fuck, I'm late." I groaned, picking up the bag that was left forgotten between the two of us. I glanced at my watch. 8:54 AM.

Game over.

"There's no reason to live anymore." The hustle from this morning suddenly seemed like such a waste. There was no way I could make it down to the World Financial Center in under six minutes. I was officially waving the white flag.

"You're giving up that easily?" he cocked an eyebrow at me. "I thought you said that your whole life depended on this. Shouldn't you push a little harder to get what you want?"

I rolled my eyes and lifted the drenched bag up my shoulders. "You were the one that put me in this situation in the first place. If you didn't pull me over for no goddamn reason, I'd be on the way down to Deloitte now."

Stryker glanced over at his partner and Porter immediately nodded. Clearly, the two had their own language of sorts, as was necessary for all officers that worked together. "We're leaving our position at the Bleecker Street Station." Porter said into his radio as Stryker began folding up the table he was standing behind.

I didn't know what to do as I stood there silently watching them prepare everything to move. Porter picked up the table, and suddenly I felt myself being pulled away by my arm. Panic immediately coursed through my body as I tried to wrench myself away. "What the hell? Are you arresting me?!"

"If you don't calm down and shut the hell up, I swear I'll hold you for disorderly conduct because you are seriously pissing me off right now." Stryker said, guiding me up the stairs. When we reached the outside of the station, the rain had finally relented but I was unfortunately still drenched. Now I just looked ridiculous. Another pair of cops who I hadn't seen when I entered stood by the entrance, stared at us as we walked up.

"Aw, really Stryker?" One of the cops laughed, taking the table that Porter was passing on to him. "You're gonna go through all that damned paperwork to arrest a girl that probably did nothing more than piss you off?"

"He was already pissed off before I got there." I retorted, glaring at the officer who was still gripping my upper arm. "Apparently I just made it a lot worse."

"He's arrested people for less." The cop snapped at me, the smile that was on his face as he spoke with Stryker immediately wiped off. I backed away unconsciously, not liking the transformation in his personality. My mind was just so messed up right now that I simply forgot that all of these guys were police officers, and not all of them had the same amount of patience as Stryker.

"Hey, we're not arresting her, Keegan." Stryker replied back slowly, pulling me back so that he was partially shielding my body. I was surprised by the protective act, especially considering the hell he had just put me through a few minutes ago. It was then that I noticed just how tall he was. I could barely see over his shoulder… unable to see the reaction of Officer Keegan. "Porter, let's go."

I gave the other annoyed officers a victorious smile as Stryker guided me towards the back seat of the car. "You said Deloitte, right? At the World Financial Center?" I nodded as he said something to Porter. The door shut behind me and I looked around the car, not exactly sure what was going on. Why had I not even attempted to make them explain to me why I was in the back of a police car?

Porter got into the driver's side and turned on the siren. Oh my God… what was going on…

"You might still be a few minutes late, but it'll still be faster than taking a cab or the subway." Stryker said, turning around to look at me. "We technically shouldn't even be doing this because this is an abuse of government resources. We don't usually do personal escorts, unless it's a matter of life or death. Don't tell anyone."

Wait… what?

Suddenly the car lurched forward and I realized that we were speeding down the streets of New York at a speed that was definitely illegal. I was going to die in this car; I knew it. I braced myself in the back seat, holding on the seats as Porter smoothly handled the sharp turns and other cars.

I was too terrified to say anything as cars pulled over immediately to let their squad car through. Oh, if only these other drivers knew what the huge emergency was…

But Stryker acted like Porter wasn't driving over sixty miles per hour on the city roads. He turned to me and took off his hat again, tossing it on the dashboard. "You getting into consulting?" I nodded, unable to form any words simply because of how overwhelmed I was by everything going on around me. "You don't look like you're in college; are you going for your Masters then?" Again, I nodded as Porter made a sharp left to turn down West Street. Not expecting the sudden turn, I flew to my right and smacked my head ungracefully against the window.

I let out an unattractive squawk at the contact, rubbing the spot that was soon to grow a bump. "You okay back there?" I heard Porter laugh as he sped down the west side of Manhattan.

"Dandy." I pouted, ignoring the grin on both of their faces. But before I could try and continue the conversation, Porter slammed on the brakes as I braced myself for the forward lurch of my body. I glanced out the window and saw the World Financial Center. Was I seriously already here at… 9:04 AM? How was this even possible?

I grabbed my purse and got out of the door that Stryker was holding open. I threw a thank you over my shoulder towards Porter, who was still sitting behind the wheel. I got out of the car, taking the hand that Stryker was offering to me. He looked down at me as he pulled me out. "Good luck with your interview." He smiled at me, his good looks yet again managing to make me falter for one second. "You're lucky I didn't arrest you for being disrespectful towards multiple members of law enforcement this morning."

I grinned sheepishly at him and slipped my hand out of his grasp, because of the weird tingles shooting up and down my arm. "I'm sorry about that." I rubbed the back of my neck, refusing to meet his sharp gaze. "But thank you, to both of you for being so accommodating. I know you can get in a lot of trouble for helping a civilian like this."

"Just don't rat on us to IAB." He smiled, before lightly pushing me towards the entrance. By now, a small group of employees coming in for the work day was standing around and wondering what I was doing getting out of the back of a police car. "You should get going. Good luck."

"Thanks again." Without thinking, I pushed up on to my toes and kissed him swiftly on the cheek. When I stepped back and saw the horrified look on his face, I realized what I had done. I swore I could hear Porter laughing from inside the car and I knew I had to get away. "Fuck." I whispered, taking a few steps back. I could feel the blush creeping up on my cheeks, and I wanted to smack myself in the face for my stupidity. "I'm gonna go now. Bye." I immediately turned around and ran towards the building for my interview.

I could officially say this was the worst and most embarrassing morning of my life.

I slammed open my door and threw my bag on the floor. "Gabby!" I shouted as she peered out from the kitchen. "I'm officially done! One more semester and I am out of here!" I made my way to the couch and threw my body down, letting the pillow fall down from the top of the sofa onto my face. I simply didn't care.

After one hellish week of studying, writing papers and taking finals, I was finally done. After that one particularly terrible Monday morning that suddenly seemed like a century ago, everything seemed to pick up. My interview had gone considerably well, regardless of the fact that I was briefly reprimanded for arriving late. I had given them my excuses and the recruiter had simply laughed it off, saying that it was not a huge deal but I knew promptness was something that large corporations emphasized.

When I came back, I managed to type out the last few pages of my paper and slip it into my professor's mailbox with minutes to spare. The only debacle that was left unsolved was what to do with my horrifying do-it-yourself haircut from the morning. I tried imagining different hairstyles but in the end just gave up, knowing that nothing could fix the juvenile chop.

"Finally!" Gabby grinned and pulled out a bottle of wine I hadn't seen her holding. "We're getting drunk tonight before I go home for the holidays. Ready for a night out?"

"You know it." I ran into my room and began looking for an outfit to wear while also texting a few of my other college friends that I knew were still around this late. I tossed my phone onto my bed and pulled open the closet doors. Asides from the fact that I had just gone through finals hell week, I couldn't push the thought out of my mind that it had been days since I last saw that gorgeous man I only knew as Officer Stryker.

I had told Gabby everything the very second I walked through the door after dropping off my paper. Somehow, she seemed to catch onto the fact how I focused the majority of my story on the cranky policy officer that had made me late for my interview. When I told her about the kiss on the cheek, I was forced to throw every pillow we had in our apartment at her face to make her shut up so I could talk about my interview.

Now, every time we saw a police officer on the walk to campus, she would always point him out and bother me until I said if that was or wasn't Officer McHottie.

There were times when I wondered why we were friends.

I was hoping that since the Bleecker Street station was so close to our campus that maybe he would cross precinct lines and show up in my life somehow. But the city was just way too big; what were the chances of this happening?

I slipped on the black dress I usually chose for our girls' nights out. I frowned, taking in my appearance in front of the mirror. The stress from the past few days had clearly taken its toll; I had lost a few pounds and the bags under my eyes were definitely more prominent than usual. I let out a huff, blowing my bangs out of my face. I heard the doorbell ring, probably one of my friends who lived next door, and Gabby yelling at whoever was there that she'd be there in a second.

I turned on my laptop, opening my Gmail to see if anything had come in from the Deloitte recruiter. I hadn't had time to check my e-mail all day; this was the first time I had touched anything related to technology. That was when I saw one e-mail with a yellow tag from Roger Danforth, the recruiter I had interviewed with.

Oh Lord… this was it.

I was working up the courage to open the e-mail when all of a sudden I heard a knock on my door. Before I could say anything, it pushed open and I saw someone walk in. At first, I simply stared at the man who was standing in my doorway. When I began actually noticing things, I saw that he was wearing a police uniform and recognition finally hit.

"Oh my God." I gaped at the man, who suddenly seemed so much more intimidating in my room than he did the other day at the subway station. For some peculiar reason, he looked even more attractive, if that was even physically possible.

He grinned at me, taking his hat off and tucking it under his arm. "You look better today than you did the other day." He said, completely contradicting my critiques about my appearance only seconds ago. His words made me want to smile, but I didn't want to seem like a soft girl in front of him. He didn't seem like the type to fall for that act.

I rolled my eyes at Stryker, sitting down in the seat in front of my laptop. "You caught me at a really bad time that day, Officer Stryker."

"There's nothing better than picking someone for the random search, especially when you can see they're already irritated. It brings a little bit of excitement to the job."

I raised my eyebrows at him, crossing my legs as I stared at him. "So you picked on me on purpose? You knew I was already having a pissy day and yet you still held me there way longer than you had to?"

"Yup." He grinned, his eyes briefly flitting over to my e-mail inbox. "You waiting for a message?"

"Always the diligent one, Officer." I moved the mouse over the e-mail from Roger Danforth. "It's my Deloitte decision. I still haven't opened it yet. I'm kind of scared, to be honest. They lectured me about tardiness; I think I can blame you for that one."

Stryker laughed again, smirking as he shook his head. "That's where you're wrong. If you had taken that subway train, you would've gotten to the World Financial Center about five to ten minutes after the time we got there, depending on how quickly you run. I actually helped you get there earlier, if anything. You should be thanking me, not blaming me."

"You were just cranky that morning and wanted to boss someone around. Power abuser." I muttered under my breath, turning back to my laptop. "Do you think I'll get this job?" I asked him, despite the fact that he knew nothing about me. I just wanted him to boost my ego for the moment so I could gather the strength to open the e-mail.

"Yeah, why not?" Stryker shrugged, leaning against the door. "You're going for your MBA at Stern. I'd say you can do it."

Wait… "How the fuck do you know where I go to school?" I blurted out, leaning forward in my chair, and that was when it hit me. This Officer Stryker was standing in my apartment and I never even told him… "How the fuck do you know where I live? Did you stalk me after my interview?" I shrieked, pushing the rolling chair backwards as far away from him as I could before I hit the wall.

"No, I didn't stalk you from your interview. You're not important enough for me to escort back. You left a complete fingerprint on my badge after you kissed me. What can I say; I wanna find out more from a girl that kisses me the first time we meet."

I immediately blushed, thinking about that horrendously awkward kiss I had planted on his cheek. What in the world was going through my mind when I had done that? "God, I'm so sorry about that." I looked down at my hands, which I had folded in my lap. The previous anger from before was gone, and again, I found myself feeling ashamed. "I don't know what I was thinking."

"I'll tell you what." Officer Stryker moved towards me slowly, crouching down so that he was squatting in front of me. He was naturally tall and when he moved down, he was finally at my level. He inched closer to me, putting his hands on the arms of my chair. I was frozen in my spot, caged by one of the most gorgeous men I'd ever had the honor of running into. The confidence oozing from him at this moment was overwhelming; I could barely think straight. "If you get the job, I'll forgive you for that… hiccup." He smirked. "And if you don't, well… I could call in a favor for you."

"No, it's okay. Thanks though." I smiled softly and hesitantly reached towards my mouse. I hovered for a moment over the message momentarily before finally going for it. I clicked on the message and a long strew of words popped onto my screen.

I glanced over the letters, scanning quickly to see what it was and hoping to lessen the intensity of the rejection if in fact that was what Roger had e-mailed to me.

Dear Sydney Stratton,

After reviewing all documents from various qualified candidates, we are pleased to inform you that we have a position for you on our consulting team

The rest of it was just a blur. My automatic reaction was to reach out to the closest person and bring him into a hug. Unfortunately, I never had the opportunity to celebrate in my own way. Instead, I felt a hand tip my chin up. Lips landed on mine, lightly coaxing me to respond. I found myself kissing him back immediately, my hand reaching up to the back of his head. I pulled him closer to me, as his hand slid down to my waist.

Oh Lord, could this man kiss or what…

He eventually pulled back and I was left a confused mess, sitting in my chair with absolutely no idea what had just happened. He must have noted the look on my face because he began answering the questions in my mind. "That moment you kissed me before your interview, I knew I had to find out who you were. Your prints were already in the system, since you applied for a government job a few years back. All your information was there; sorry if that seems a little invasive. I abused the powers of being a cop."

"Yeah, you did." I said, though I wasn't really paying attention to what he was saying. I was still dazed from the amazing kiss we had just shared; nothing was really making sense to me. "You know so much about me then." I stated slowly, the facts of our odd relationship coming to the front of my mind. "I know nothing about you…. Who are you anyway?" It was a question I'd been dying to ask, but never quite found the opportunity to inquire about.

"I thought you would never ask." He smiled in that breathtaking fashion again. How was it possible this officer was capable of making me fall for him so damn quick? "Rhys Stryker." God, even his name was sexy as hell. "Are you going out tonight?" he gestured down towards my outfit. "If you're not, I'd like to take you out so you can get to know me better. It's only fair, considering how I already know everything about you."

I hesitated for a brief moment, realizing I had just texted most of my friends that I was going to be meeting up with them. That was when I heard Gabby storm into my room, slamming the door wide open. I jumped in surprise, while the man I now knew as Rhys simply turned around to face my way too nosy roommate. "If you come out with us tonight, I will personally kick you out of this dorm next semester."

I blushed, realizing that Gabby had listened to the entire conversation we were having. But simultaneously, I was grateful for the fact that I had such a supportive best friend who was willing to sacrifice the last night we had together for the next three weeks.

"So? What do you say?" Rhys brought me back to attention, placing his hand on my neck. His thumb rubbed small circles against my skin and I couldn't stop myself from leaning into his touch. "Go on a date with me tonight?"

I looked up at him, covering his hand with mine. I smiled at him and nodded. "Yeah, I'd really love that."

He smiled and pulled me into another mind-blowing kiss.

That one morning might have been full of one unlucky mishap after another, but all of that led up to me meeting the one man who was definitely going to be worth it.

Author's Note

Wuuuuhhh? Another one-shot you ask? Yes, it's true! I had written about a third of this before and I kind of just stopped since I lost inspiration. I recently found it again... and well, womps. This is what comes of it. I like this one because this is based off of the time an NYPD officer pulled me aside at the subway station for a random check. The other officers at the table yelled at the other cop for sending me over because apparently, I was a waste of their time since I was too innocent. Heh.

Anyway, I kind of really… REALLY love these characters. Who knows. I might do a short story based off of them in the future.

That's it for now :) I have nothing new to say, except for that Eight Years will probably be my next update. Until then! I hope you enjoyed reading and please, as always, review away! Love you all, and I will see y'all on the flip side.