By this time, practically the entire class was spellbound, and so was the professor, who had long realized that he hadn’t anything to worry about. By now, it was so obvious to see that she had changed, with the way she was able to meet everyone’s gazes with an earnest smile backed by purposeful determination.
A woman with a purpose, the professor thought, and soon it became clear what that purpose was.
“I had the chance to chat with them over dinner, and I was happy when they invited some of their friends over. We spoke for hours, and the whole time, I kept waiting for one of them to say they were sad or tired – that they were feeling so down they just wanted to end it all. But none of them did. All they spoke of was how they had to keep living no matter what – and that was when I realized what made them different. They had people to live for, people whom they were certain would not survive if they were to die, and—”
She suddenly stopped speaking, doe eyes blinking rapidly, and his fist involuntarily clenched when he realized she was fighting back tears. He turned to his class and saw that it was the same for them, too.
“One of them s-said…if she killed herself, then she might as well have killed her own m-mother, too.” Diana paused to swallow hard. “I know what I’m about to propose might not…might be too novel if there’s such a thing, but what if – what if we were to give them something or someone to live for, something or someone that they would know with absolute certainty wouldn’t survive without them – might that not be enough—” Diana’s voice caught, and this time she had no choice but to wipe the tears that had tracked down her cheeks. “Might it not be enough to keep them from committing suicide?”
It was a question no one in the room had the answer to.
But it didn’t matter at this point.
Because by this time, it was more than enough that she was asking the right question, more than enough that she wasn’t asking it just to score points. She was asking the question because she wanted to save lives, she was asking this one question because it was her purpose – and everyone saw this.
One by one they came to their feet, their applause growing thunderous as some of them sniffed while others sobbed outright. The professor had never seen such a thing happen in his class before, and when he turned to meet her dark shining eyes—
Because in her gaze he saw…
Fuck, fuck, fuck.
And he was so goddamn fucked.
Diana couldn’t stop thinking about the professor’s cock.
And it was all his fault, too, she thought helplessly.
Second-chance presentations were long over, but since returning to her seat, she kept catching the professor looking at her, so often she became giddily convinced he wanted her to know he had his eye on her.
It also helped that he had such an amazing and subtle way of doing it no other student seemed to notice. It was just her, only her that the leonine glitter of lust in his eyes focused on. Just her.
How could any girl not think about his cock when she had the professor eye-fucking her like that?
She didn’t even have to close her eyes. It was so horrifyingly, shamefully easy to remember the way he had been. The way he had been sprawled like a lounging, powerful beast on the couch. The way his elegant fingers had stroked his member. The way he had made her ache.
Oh, sweet mercy, how he had made her ache.
How could she not think? Remember? Relive?
A sheaf of papers suddenly smacked her on the face, and she crashed back down to earth to see Pepper giving her an evil, saccharine smile. “Sorry. I didn’t think I’d hit you.”
Liar, Diana thought. But because the memories had her body still tingling and humming, she couldn’t even summon a single ounce of anger. Looking down, she saw that the papers were the schedule request forms the professor had spoken about, and she took one for herself before passing it to the guy on her other side.
He gave her a sympathetic smile, saying in a low, conspiratorial tone, “Don’t mind her. She’s just jealous your proposal’s got a better shot at winning MPT.”
“Most Promising Thesis.” This from Pepper, who apparently didn’t mind letting them know she had been listening in. “And as Ms. Melodramatic here doesn’t even know what it is—” The girl leaned over her desk just to bypass Diana and shoot a scornful look at the other student’s direction. “You’re absolutely delusional, to think that she’s got a chance at beating me.”
Diana was flabbergasted at the vitriol embedded in the redhead’s tone. “I wasn’t—”