“You always introduce them to friends?” It seemed wiser to me to keep the whole thing a secret.
“No. But I’m not gonna let this stuff dictate my whole life, you know?”
I could respect that.
“Julie’s only met one other, about five months ago, right after we started dating. She liked him a lot; she’ll like you, too. Mainly cuz she’ll think you’re him, but also cuz you’re a nice guy.”
Flattery. Nice touch. But was it just part of a strategy? “Can I ask you a question?”
“How many have you encountered?”
“You’re my fifth.”
Five? Shit. “You must be good.”
“Honestly, I don’t think skill has anything to do with how the fight unravels.” He stopped in front of a small apartment building. “Here’s my place.”
We walked up a flight of stairs and entered a second-floor flat. Lying on a couch facing the door was a beautiful blond-haired girl, who looked asleep. She was tall and leggy, which I could tell because she wasn’t wearing pants. Just an oversized t-shirt and some underwear.
“Julie! Guess who’s here.” Jake picked up a pillow and threw it across the room at her.
She stretched her arms over her head, revealing even more skin. “Don’t you have class?” she said groggily.
“I’m skipping out. My brother’s here.”
She looked past Jake and saw me standing there, waving and grinning apologetically. “Oh shit!” She leapt off the couch and ran into an adjacent room, returning a second later in a pair of jeans, pulling her hair back into a ponytail. “Why didn’t you say something?” she said, throwing the pillow at Jake.
“I did say something. You were sleeping.”
She waved at me sheepishly and said, “Hey, Colin.” Her gaze lingered on me a little longer than I was comfortable with. But she had some stunning eyes. Green. Almost emerald.
Jake slapped Julie’s butt, distracting her from staring at me. “We’re twins, Jules. Get over it.”
“I know. It’s just so weird.”
“You’re telling me,” I said. We locked eyes again. I’ve got to admit, the thought crossed my mind. Hot girl can’t tell you apart from her boyfriend. Opens up some possibilities, you know?
Jake cleared his throat. I wondered if he knew what I was thinking. “Can we borrow your sleds?” he said to Julie.
“Sure. They’re still here.”
“In the basement. You want me to get them?”
He glanced at me and back at Julie. “No, I’ll get “˜em.”