Boy Meets Nerd

Free Boy Meets Nerd by Leia Shaw

Book: Boy Meets Nerd by Leia Shaw Read Free Book Online
Authors: Leia Shaw
You’re very austere. Do you ever take a break to have fun?” Her nose scrunched in an adorable look of offense. “All the time.”
    “Oh yeah? What do you do for fun?”
    She placed her fork on the table and twisted her mouth as she thought. “Well, sometimes I take a break from finding prime numbers and mine bitcoin instead.”
    He stared at her blankly.
    After a drawn out sigh that managed to sound condescending, she explained, “Solving equations to create an online currency market.”
    “Wow. Equations. That’s so
    adventurous of you.” He shook his head slowly, exaggerating an awed expression.
    “Downright
    dangerous.”
    “Shut
    up.”
    With
    a
    challenging look, she lifted her chin. “I’m also going on a road trip in two weeks.”
    “A road trip? Where to?”
    “A hacker convention in
    Chicago.”
    “You’re driving there by
    yourself?”
    She nodded.
    For
    some
    reason,
    that

    bothered him. “That’s kind of far to drive on your own. You couldn’t take Jess with you or something?”
    “She works weekends.”
    “Do you have a reliable
    car?”
    She laughed. “You sound
    like my grandmother.”
    He scowled then dropped
    the subject. It wasn’t his problem.
    Why did he care anyway? She was barely a friend. An acquaintance.
    His heart was already taken.
    Not that he viewed Emerson
    in that way – a threat to his heart.
    She hardly seemed to like him. He gave his head a shake. Damn. He was so mixed up.
    Maybe if he acknowledged
    how he felt about her, it would go away. She was cute to look at.
    There. He’d said it. Now he could move on. Her prickly personality did nothing for him. He wanted his sunny kindergarten teacher. The girl he pictured singing happy songs to small children, a bright smile and warm expression.
    Emerson was the opposite
    of that image. Dark and anti-social.
    She rarely smiled. Children were probably scared of her. She had a certain charm, but the kind that appealed to other people. Not him.

    “How long until you have an
    address?” he asked, getting back to the point.
    She shrugged. “Not long.
    I’ve hacked the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles plenty of times. But I
    wanna
    cross
    check
    that
    information with the district schools and find out exactly where and what she teaches. It should only take me a few days.”
    More waiting. More time
    stalling with Hope about why he was acting so distant. Maybe he’d tell her a relative died. Lying wasn’t natural for him but she’d brought him to this. She’d lied first.

    With a sigh, he finished his box of lo mein then started cleaning up the mess. Emerson joined in.
    “Thanks for buying,” she
    said, holding the garbage top open while he deposited the used plasticware inside. “I owe you next time.”
    “Next time?”
    “When you come back in a few days, I’ll get us pizza.” They walked back to the
    living room. “Do you live on take-out or do you actually cook sometimes?”
    “Take-out or microwavable
    food. Cooking is a waste of time.

    So’s eating but whenever I try to give it up, there’s some nasty side effects.”
    “You don’t say.” After
    packing up the leftover food, he stuck it in her fridge. “For tomorrow,” he said then put up a hand when she started to protest.
    “Please. I’ll feel better knowing you’re nourished while doing work for me.”
    For some reason, he felt a surge of pride in seeing her fed and provided for. Truly, she needed a boyfriend. Not him. But someone who understood her level of focus.
    Someone who would make sure she ate three meals a day. Who’d make sure she flashed that dimple once in a while. And for a crazy moment, he wished someone would fuck the tension out of her.
    What the hell was wrong
    with him? He needed to get out of there fast. Fresh air would clear his mind. Maybe another night of drinking. He made a bee-line for the door.
    “I gotta go,” he said over his shoulder as he turned the handle.
    “Thanks for everything, Em.” I’m such a bastard.

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