Elizabeth-Gail Diana Childers, as she was christened, was your typical "All American Good Girl," pretty and brilliant academically. Yet for most of her life, Libby's been relegated to the role as wallflower at her family's social functions.
After the death of her father, three-year-old Libby and her mother were close. That is until her mother fell in love and married Mr. Childers and became someone Libby would be hard pressed to acknowledge as being her mother. Time passed and just before college, fate dealt her another crushing blow, Alister Childer, the only father she'd known died and Libby took his passing very hard. Libby's life changed. Whether it was grief or escapism from the debilitating sadness when A.C. no longer served as a buffer between her and her mother, she withdrew like a "Touch Me Not" as she'd become accustomed for many years. That was until her senior year in college when the journalism bug bit her. Her love of literature consumed her as did her interest in a particular junior professor who stirred her love for the written word and awakened a part of her she'd never known.
Anthony S. Taylor Ashcroft was a professor with the most potential of being named the head of his department. At 33, he was the youngest professor not only to have a double doctorate but the writing chops to rival some of the more seasoned professors twice his age. He was driven, handsome and much to his chagrin, wealthy. For many years, he'd evaded and avoided almost all social functions where his family's prestige and money would garner him more attention of the marrying kind than he'd want. Short of becoming a hermit, he'd buried himself in research and writing preferring the peace and quiet within the halls of academia than jet-setting, not because of the dollar signs attached to his last name, but more for the fact that he'd not found 'the one.' It was for that fact alone he'd remained unattached and his bed and his heart unencumbered. All that changed, however, when his thoughts were consumed by the quiet pretty young woman in the last row of his graduate studies class. On the last day of the term, they happen to meet on the top floor of the humanities building. There, Professor Taylor tells Libby of his attraction to her. What happens next is incendiary.
Many years pass and in a twist of fair, Taylor reconnected with the brilliant, sexy woman who stirred more than his emotions. Coming to her rescue, he has a chance to help her with a family matter and in so doing, finds out that his former student still has feelings for him. Armed with this knowledge, Professor Taylor decides to act, convinced there are a few more lessons he'd like to teach her. With his tutelage, Taylor discovers Libby possesses an inner strength and passion to not only save herself but possibly him as well.
Dashing for the elevator, Libby kept pressing the down button. Shit, she couldn't believe she'd overslept. Panicked, she stared at the illuminated number displayed above, that seemed to be stuck in the time-warp, dissatisfied with its job and made a show of it by dragging its feet. Okay now she was looking it, of course, elevators ding have feet. All right maybe it was making all guardian angel pointing out the virtues of patience. Oh, yea, she was defiantly losing it along with her temper. In her mind's eye, she honed in on her psychic abilities. Visions of her thoughts ran rampant in her head of her mother-dear-est, Libby edition, loud talking in front of the rest of the bridesmaids at the luncheon about all of her shortcomings. Shutting down her manic downward spiral she vented her anger on the tiny illuminated down button.
“Come on, come on!” she railed at the glowing orb of her frustration, constantly tapping on the button like there was no tomorrow, till she growled giving the brass wall a kick and turned to slip into the stairwell determined not to be late. Barreling down the floor after, she burst out the stairwell, Finally down on the first floor, winded, disheveled and nearly ready to pass the fuck out. Wobbling, she wobbled up to an astonished concierge attendant and breathily informed in-forming him something she probably already knew. After all, that is what security systems were designed for.
“…Elevator…stuck…not working…” before she staggered to hail a taxi with all the enthusiasm of one in a hurry to go nowhere, only having to do it quickly. and speed away to the revolving door, she thought of what awaited her, lunch with meet her mother, Jillie and the rest of the pinched face bitches she so loathed to spend the afternoon with, let alone lunch-eon, except for her cousin, which was the only reason she tried would try to be civil.
In retrospect, she would marvel at how life, accidents, and destiny had a way of revolving around each other. Sometimes, they happened all at the same time. She knew she should have been looking both ways, but sure as shit, when you were in the biggest rush, fate ha a way of slowing you down, so was what happened next.
The collision was unavoidable, as Libby dashed out into the pedestrian traffic flow, she went right, the cab she had in her sights on, did a rolling stop. she pivoted and ran smack into another person going for the same cab. both she and the other person hit the ground in a tumble of arms, legs and other body parts with a thud. In a totally uncoordinated scramble, they both got up. Libby's purse added insult to injury deciding to vomit its contents all over the sidewalk. Bending down, she head-butted the ..man
"Fuck," they bath swore. Libby, for once grateful she was closer to the ground, went down on all fours to snag her cell, bill-fold and makeup bag. Thank heavens she didn’t have any tampons, cause they assuredly would have been on display on the red, plush carpet in the portico of the hotel’s arches. Hands also gather up a pack of tissues and her sunglasses.
Not looking at him as he handed the things over, she mumbles a thank you and got to her feet. Bang, Damn-it, she hisses, as their heads once again, made like magnets, and bumped again. She felt the sidewalk to a tilt-a-whirl, seeing not stars, but hot tiny dots, in random patterns in both her line of sight as well as when she winced, closing her eyes. As she tracked the colorful orbs, hands shot around her, steading her against a strong hard body.
Libby’s head feeling too heavy, fell forward on his chest. God, her quarterback smelled terrific
“Are you all right, his deep voice rumbled in his chest. No wait, she spoke it right? Libby clung to the life preserver on legs What did he ask?
Summoning her strength, she lifted her head to answer in the affirmative, but didn’t get the chance, her world froze in the throat and she stared, unable to believe what she saw.
“P-Professor Taylor?” she murmured, just before her legs buckled and she fainted.