Julian Martin sat on the couch, going through a bunch of emails on his phone. He sighed, realizing how much work he had to do. Procrastination was indeed the thief of time, he thought, as he realized that it was his fault that work had piled up this much.

"You will not believe who just called me... Guess who" Abby Martin said as she emerged from her bedroom, clad in pink silk pajamas.

"Who?" Julian asked casually, clearly not in the mood for small talk.

"I said, guess," Abby said.

Julian Martin turned to look at his little sister, who had a look on her face that he didn't quite understand. He rolled his eyes and returned his attention to his phone.

"I'm not going to bother about guessing anything," he said. "Because I have a feeling that you will tell me anyway. You know,... Because it's you and you can't be quiet about anything... Even to save your life. I'm not even sure that you can keep secret, so just cut the crap and tell me what it is"

"You are no fun" Abby said and she glared at her brother, but then she smiled because she knew he was right. She would tell him anyways, but that didn't stop her from picking up a pillow and throwing it at him.

"Well," she began, "I know you're going to love this... Do you remember my best friend, Nina Taylor, from high school?... Oh of course you do.. How could you forget"

For some reason, Julian felt his heart beat a little faster at the mention of that name. Abby waited for him to say something and when he didn't she continued.

"That was her on the phone. She said she decided to leave her dad's company as she was in this 'Independent... Starting over again phase'... I didn't really listen to that last part because I got so excited after she told me she got a job here and she wants to stay with me for a while. Isn't that amazing? It's been so long you know... Remember how close she and I were in high school?"

"Yeah I remember," Julian said. How could he forget? At that time, Nina Taylor was a huge part of his life….not because they were close friends or in any kind of relationship, but because he spent a great deal of time just thinking about her and getting distracted by her.

"Well, I guess that's a good thing.... for you. At least you won't complain to me about being bored anymore and maybe I can finally get some peace" he added, willing the memory to go away. It was embarrassing to think about just how much he'd been into Nina Taylor.

Excited about seeing h

She's your friend. She's coming to live with you... Not me. I mean, of course it would be nice to see her a

her everywhere. Remember how I used to tease you about it and you made me promise not to tell her? Because you

o, but once in a while he still thought about Nina Taylor. She had been Abby's be

en as he thought she was way out of his league. She and Abby had been cheerle

as intelligent and perceptive, and although she hung out with the Soc crowd, she was open to befriending people who weren't in her crowd. Julian was so attracted to her but couldn't nev

ound out about it, and he had to make her promise not to tell. Leaving for college had he

om stuff like that," he said. "But you know what? I honestly think it would be

just what exactly do you m


d on her bag, not because she was scared, but because she was nervous as hell.

everything planned out for her. She hated it actually. She wanted something different. She wanted adventure and she wanted something to happen in her life

had to do. And her father might be angry now, but she hoped he would get

opened the door and pu

still hugging her. "I can't be

m here too" Nina replied as

blue so I'm very sorry. I was surprised too... honestly I didn't think I was going to get this job and when I did, I just knew

ant. Trust me, I could really use the company. I hate living alone, it gets really boring and I'm really in need of someone to ta

rtin looked so different.. Good different... Not that he wasn't good looking before, she had always thought h

id to Abby, then she turned to Julian. "Hi

he stood and extended his hand to

oozed over her like lava. She could no more have kept her gaze from straying to his eyes than she could h

nsual, almost cruel curve of his mouth and the rock-hard jut of his jaw, he reminded her of a long-ago king from a mysterious country, stan