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Beautiful Mistake(9)

By:Vi Keeland

I was clearly starving. I’d planned to eat something before I left work, but then we got busy, and I didn’t want to stop somewhere and chance being late. Today was just filled with great planning.

“I’d love that.”

He started the car. “What are you in the mood for?”

“I’m easy. Whatever you want is fine with me.”

“How about a burger? Do you eat meat?”

Thankfully it was dark enough to hide my blush. “Umm…yes. I eat meat.” And apparently that’s exactly what my body and brain were in the mood for.


“For the record, I wasn’t feeding you a line the first time I saw you. You do look familiar.” Caine sipped his beer.

The fact that he’d ordered a beer struck me as odd. I’d have taken him for something fancier—expensive wine or aged scotch, perhaps. Seeing him relaxed with a beer in his hand had me viewing the uptight professor in a whole different light. Or perhaps it was his abs that had adjusted my thinking.

“We’ve probably seen each other around campus,” I said. Although I was pretty sure I hadn’t seen him before. I’d remember a man who looked like him.


“Do you go to O’Leary’s often?” I asked.

“The other night was the first time I was ever there. Stopped on the way home from a friend’s who just moved in a few blocks away.”

“Well, basically, I’m either at O’Leary’s, on campus, or home sleeping, or studying. Not much time for anything else these days.” I pointed a mozzarella stick at him and smirked. “And that’s not due to change. According to People magazine, this is going to be a year of all work and no play.”

“Oh yeah? People magazine? Sounds like a solid source to set your expectations for the future.”

“I think so. I did answer five questions to get that prophecy, so it’s pretty reliable. One wrong answer and I could have been doomed for a year of adventure or soothing self discovery.”

Caine chuckled. “Well, try to squeeze in a little playtime. You know the old saying—too much work and no play can make life dull.”

“I’m good with dull. I’ve retired from being exciting.”

“Retired from excitement? How old are you? Twenty-two, twenty-three?”

“Twenty-five.” I shrugged. “I got my adventure quota in during my teen years, which were out of control. I’m playing catch-up with my adult life. Busy is good. Adulting is good.”

Caine scratched his chin. “Out of control, huh? Like what?”

“No way, Professor. I’ve made enough bad impressions on you to last a while. I’ll save some of those stories for after I’ve shown you how smart and talented I am.”

Caine smiled. It was the first unrestrained smile he’d let slip past his guard. Leaning back into his seat, he slung one arm casually over the back of the booth. “Alright. Then tell me about you and music. I’ll get to hear a little bit about your smarts and talent, and it’ll help me plan which lessons you should teach.”#p#分页标题#e#

“What would you like to know?”

“Why music?”

“You mean, why did I pick music for a major?”

“No. You obviously picked the major because you love music. But why do you love music?”

“That’s a really broad question and kind of hard to capture in a few sentences.”

“Give it a shot. There’s no wrong or right answer.”

“Okay.” I thought for a few long moments. “Because music expresses all the things people can’t say, but are impossible to keep quiet.”

He didn’t immediately respond. “Sing or play an instrument?” he asked after letting it sink in.

I smiled. Having been a music major for undergraduate, I knew my answer always confused people. “Neither. I can hold a tune, but I don’t sing exceptionally well, and there isn’t a particular instrument I excel at, like most music majors.”

Basically, eighty-five percent of all music majors either sang or played guitar or piano. The remaining fifteen percent were the random drummers or saxophonists.

“Can’t say I hear that often.”

“I know. I learned to play a few instruments decently during my undergraduate work, but I don’t want to be a musician or a rock star. My master’s degree will be in musical therapy.”

The waitress came and delivered plates with giant burgers. I’d hoped it would transition some of the attention away from me, but Caine must have been busy piecing the little bits I’d already shared together.