The Chemistry of Control Ch. 01byKaryn Gardenia©
Brandon Malek was uncomfortable. Something about the bouncy blonde hanging on his shoulder, giggling into his ear like a child, rubbed him the wrong way for the first time in almost a month. He wondered if perhaps he had simply been zoning it out until now, favoring instead her visual qualities. Things like tits and a toothy smile generally ran their course in a week or so, and having a personality that could go from strong in the open to submissive behind closed doors was something that could maybe land you an extra two weeks. So where had the last week gone? Why was she still here?
He realized he had been slacking off on his girling duties. The classwork had distracted him. He didn't fancy himself the kind of guy who went to college just for the tits and the beer, and then somehow scraped by on the bare minimum of anything else. He was serious about his performance. It was the tits and beer that filled out the empty spaces while he was waiting for the lesser intellects of the world to catch up. Sometimes there was really nothing else to do. Besides, it was just one more way for him to prove his silent, modest superiority. He could outdrink just about anyone and walk away in a straight line.
So while Ellen absently rubbed her left breast against his ribs, her left arm around his back and her right clutching at his shoulder, he thought his way out of it. They were only a hundred yards or so from the place where they normally parted ways for the afternoon. He would walk down the hill to Organic Chemistry, and she would go... well, he didn't know where. They didn't talk about her classes. He had almost asked once, then realized what that would actually mean, and the kinds of things she might say if invited into conversation. Instead, he had reached around and unsnapped her bra with two fingers, and they had gone about the next fifteen minutes in a different kind of exchange. It would have to be now, before something like that happened again.
"Ellen," he said, as if he were stating his license plate number or birthdate. He had interrupted her. She had actually been talking about some other girl, but he wasn't sure who. "I don't think this is going to work out anymore."
She looked at him with her Barbie-doll eyes; they were big and blank and hopeless. She blinked twice, then let her shoulders sag. "Are you serious?"
"Quite serious," he responded. "I think we both knew this was coming. We're just kidding ourselves. You might as well go back to that heart you broke over in the computer science department. Looks aren't everything, you know."
He meant it. She had dumped a slightly nerdy freshman with a heart of gold so that she could spend a wild night eating candy necklaces off Brandon's cock at a party. It was sad, but in a way, he knew that Ellen had liked the guy, and had only walked away because of her low self-image. Try as he might, he couldn't stop attracting that kind of girl.
"Brandon, you're an asshole," was all she said before stomping off towards whatever class she had neglected to mention with his help.
He allowed himself a frown, promising that one of these days, he was going to hear that accusation and actually feel bad about it.
Organic Chemistry was spent in strict academic focus. The only moment he waivered from the prize was caused by the intrusive beeping of a cell phone directly to his right, where a friend of Ellen's called "A.J." was punching buttons, probably reading a message. The next moment we waivered was caused by her disgusted stare. He stared back, content to neutrality. The professor, Doctor Ester, was making an announcement about the Society of Young Scientists that would be meeting starting this very evening. Brandon had already written down the information from a flyer.
When class was over, she finally locked her keys and dropped her cell phone back into her shoulder bag. She glared at him once more, mouthed the word asshole to him, and then strutted out the door. He admired her. Most girls would have taken the immediate opportunity to place themselves in his lap upon hearing that he was a free man. Then again, he suspected A.J. was a closet lesbian. No great victory there.
"Brandon Malek," the professor coughed out, catching him at the door, "Congratulations on a job well done. I saw your term paper in the O.C. Journal this last week. How on Earth do you college students find the time for such genius?"
"Time isn't the problem," he remarked wittedly, smiling back with shaded pride, "Sometimes we just lack inspiration."
"I hope you plan to present your work to the society. It should be a neat clan if we can keep it going this year."
"I'm sure we will," he assured his teacher. Even if no one else went, Brandon planned to go every single week. His face must have registered this desire. If it had been anyone else, he probably would have heard quiet mockery from some other students, maybe comments about someone being an overacheiver. There wasn't a peep. Everyone was moving on into their afternoons and their fleeting freedom.
The inspiration he had been genuinely waiting for presented itself later that evening when he walked into the SYS meeting. This particular inspiration was seated front and center with her lightly shadowed eyes downcast into a book- an antisocial gesture he always admired in a woman. He didn't think he had ever seen her before, which was a good sign. It meant she wasn't a cheerleader, a sorority leader, or a Resident Assistant. Positions like these would have put her in the spotlight, and probably in his lap at some party or another. She glanced up briefly at the clock, and back down again. He was taken.
He allowed himself a moment or two to stay at the doorway, surveying the room and letting it fill up. When he had the slightest inkling that John Feldman the guitar-playing ecologist was making his way to the open seat on her right, he used six long strides to put a casual distance on the competition. He pretended not to notice her for several more moments as John narrowed his eyes and sat by the door.
When he did look at her, she was staring savagely into his eyes, meeting his gaze head on. He wondered if his surprised jolt was visible. She looked unconcerned.
"You're sitting on my dress," she stated, a tiny hint of a smile curving one side of her mouth. It was both incredibly seductive and a total accident.
"Aha," he proclaimed, rising to his feet and noticing the delicate fold of her skirt that had been pinched between his ass and the hard, wooden seat. He reached down to move it, to restore it to its place covering the honey-colored knee that had been exposed, but didn't get to it before she did. When it was back in it's place, so were her eyes- reading and scanning and taking metric tons of information into the mysterious cave of wonders behind them. He could not, for the life of him, get her damn attention. He also could not stop thinking about her beautiful knee.
"My dear friends," Professor Ester announced as he made his entrance- too dramatic in contrast with his partner, Dr. Oliver, who had entered on mouse-like feet and taken a seat in a corner near the overhead. "I'm so glad to see a full house."
It was a surprise. The year before, the attempt at gathering a society of college students truly interested in breaking science failed miserably, leaving the professors and two other students to shorten the meeting time to fifteen minutes and only once a month.
"My colleague, James Oliver, and I welcome you to the Society of Young Scientists... and that means you. You are the future of academic journals, collegiate science departments, and truly ground-breaking world-saving research."
John Feldman grinned like an idiot. He about got off at the mere mention of saving the world. Brandon knew what most truly wise people know when push really comes to shove: Science is a man-made tool, and the world isn't. How can one even claim to have guardianship over the other?
The lovely creature next to him shifted in her seat, uncrossing her legs and re-crossing them in reverse. She had let her book fall closed on her thumb and was watching Dr. Oliver rummaging in his fold-out file bag, one ear on Professor Ester and the other on whatever beautiful thoughts must be singing in the dark. Her attention was EVERYWHERE but on him.
He felt a hand on his shoulder, and leaned back into the inevitable whisper. It was a girl named Kristy...or Kristen, or Kirsten...something like that. He had judged her the winner of a wet t-shirt contest the year before, hands-down. Not only had it been the obvious choice, but being a complete and utter slut, he was well rewarded. The girl had stepped into the back bedroom, where she knew he would arrive to join her. Minutes later he had her face down on the bed, her soaked t-shirt pulled up to release her oversized tits and her naked rear high in the air. He hadn't played around. The contest had made him so hard that he, without a care for romance, clubbed into her like a freight train. He had fucked her so hard that she had stayed on the bed, totally spent, for nearly a half hour after he had dressed and left the room. Someone named Jim or Joe or something had walked in to see her laying there with her suffocating tits exposed for all the world and her freshly loosened pussy gleaming in the lamplight. He had told the story endlessly since.
"Brandon," she whispered, "Sorry about Ellen."
Kristen/Kirsten wasn't the kind of girl to hold a grudge. She was the kind that needed an experience like that to make her feel good about herself- to make her feel worthwhile. Brandon considered what he had done to be charity. He nodded, smiling in solemnity, barely even looking at her. He knew that somehow word had been distorted to say that Ellen had broken up with him, but he knew that for most people, that would be an obvious absurdity. It didn't concern him. What did concern him was the interruption Kristen/Kirsten had caused in his focus on the girl to his right. It was Dr. Oliver who gave him a shove in the right direction.
"I think we should all get to know each other," he said quietly, like a first grade teacher. It seemed he and Dr. Ester didn't quite have their notes prepared and needed a little bit more time. "Please turn to the person next to you and introduce yourself and your field."
There were some annoyed groans from the masses, probably because most people were sitting next to someone they already knew quite well. Brandon turned to meet his partner with a bold charisma, but faltered when she moved her book from her lap onto the floor and sat up straight to commence the conversation. She had unintentionally emphasized the curve of her body, which started at her thighs, ran up the length of her stomach, and settled in under her round, perfectly medium-sized breasts. She wore a fitted sweater that buttoned up the front, and had neglected to button the last two buttons. It was only a suggestion of cleavage that mocked him from below a tear-drop necklace that seemed to be the same shade of light green as her fearless eyes.
"Well, I'm Maren," she said, sighing as if she had given up on rebelling against "Get to know you" activities. "I'm in botany."
"Brandon Malek," he replied, automatically holding out his hand to her. She shook it with another half-smile and paused, expecting him to go on. He almost forgot to. "Organic Chemistry."
"Ah," she responded, once again with only polite interest. "The Inner-Lives of the 3rd Kind?"
He knew he must be grinning moronically. She had just recited the title of his term paper and then immediately turned her attention to something else- an acknowledgment that he had, in fact, written a published paper, but she didn't necessarily have a lot invested in it.
"That's right," he said, unable to stop looking at the pout of her slightly shimmery lower lip.
"Aliens," she said sleepily, and pulled a stapled stack of paper from her bag. As she bent to get it, the side of her sweater climbed up her waist ever so slightly, and Brandon was favored with a brief glance at more of this girl's honey-colored body. She pulled the sweater back down into place immediately and flopped the paper into his lap. Her blithe was like Everclear.
"My argument," she stated simply- that seductive, twisted smile barely showing itself.
It wasn't until now that he realized she was making fun of him. Though she had read his paper, she was turned off of his proposal to the structure of alien life enough to write what seemed to be a very complete rebutal. "I made this copy for you. I was going to ask Dr. Oliver which one you were later."
He couldn't resist smiling. She was a rocket, this one.
Dr. Ester cut the exchange short, directing the attention of the students back to the projector, which was now showing a list of students who had published work in academic journals. There were surprisingly few for a college of this size and prestige, but that was all the greater compliment to those listed. John Feldman was listed, and Maren Starbor, who must have been the delicious presence to his right. The rest were names of upperclassmen, he guessed, who were too focused to go to parties.
"Congratulations," he whispered through the corner of his mouth to Maren, who exhaled but never looked at him again for the remainder of the meeting.
The night before, as the meeting had come to an end, she had picked up her bag and stepped briskly to the door, where she and John Feldman had shared a pleasant smile and then both disappeared in opposite directions. Brandon had been trying to keep up with her, to say something more to her, when Dr. Ester had stepped into his path and patted him on the back with respect.
"Sorry we didn't get to you, tonight, son. We'll have to do the rest of you next week."
"It's alright," he said, wishing they could just do all of the meetings in one sitting. If they sat there for four straight days, he figured Maren might look at him for twenty minutes, at best. That seemed to be the ratio so far.
He was sitting on a couch in the crowded science lounge, finishing up the reading of a certain rebutal she had written to his published work- something he was shocked and belittled by. Every argument she was making was sound and solid, and it made him feel like a fool. Though his work was just as solid and simply showed a different idea of possibility, her work seemed to rail his into the ground. He imagined the statements in her voice- that unyielding but polite voice of hers- and almost couldn't take what it was doing to him. He was in a fluster of desire and frustration. He wanted her to be saying these things to his face. He wanted her to taunt him. My god, he almost reeled with the mental picture of her standing over him in her summer dress, her hair in soft curls, her cruel lips in control of the room.
"Brandon," said a child-like voice behind him. Ellen had sat down on the armrest of the couch, and was clutching some Espanol textbooks to her chest. "Can we talk, please?"
What could he say to such a civil request? No, go away, I'm reading pages upon pages of insults that are making me weak with the need to go into that bathroom right over there and jerk off? This girl who is completely and utterly ignoring my charm and obvious interest has me totally enamored?
"Yes, let's talk," he managed, instead. She slipped down onto the couch next to him, smiling with a hope that he knew he would have to crush again.
It was the usual talk. She wanted him to tell her why he broke up with her, what she had done wrong, what she could change, etc. He did his best to give her the general excuses without sounding cliche. He just didn't think they belonged together, he felt he didn't have enough time to devote to her, he thought they were too different, and so on. She listened, but didn't seem to particularly believe him. Her eyes were welled up with highly controlled tears, and it was only a matter of two or three more words and they were going to come spilling out. He leaned over to plant a comforting kiss on her cheek- something that would either make her feel better or set her off into hysterical crying- and spotted Maren out of the corner of his eye. She was about to sit at the other end of the long couch with some homework, completely oblivious and unconcerned with him. He stopped his kiss before it started and froze, watching her settle into the couch, crossing her legs. Another summer dress, this one pale blue with a feminine empire waist. She was wearing no jewelry, and barely any makeup. She was a goddess.
"Brandon," Ellen whispered sternly through her tears, seeing what had taken his attention. "You really are an asshole." She was gone before her statement actually registered in his mind. He was lost in thought. Maren turned and laughed softly- the sarcastic smile that drove him into tremors beaming at him across the couch.
"Seems to be the mass concensus," she remarked, and glanced briefly at her paper in his lap, opened to the last page. "A little light reading?"
"This is really good," he said, unsure of a better way to phrase it. "And I'm not really an asshole, you know." This last part had come out unplanned.
She laughed again, providing a firm indication that she knew no such thing.
He didn't see her again until the next week at the SYS meeting. She had taken the same seat, but this time she was flanked on one side by John Feldman. The seat Brandon had occupied the week before was still open, so he took it, pulling out his notes for his presentation to refresh himself. Maren was reading. John glanced over at Brandon across the top of her book, nodding his head in a greeting. Brandon nodded back, pretending that he didn't think the guy was a complete tool.
It was a struggle to stay on top of his presentation when the time came. Though his speech was unbroken, and to the lot, it appeared he was delivering the whole thing effortlessly, his eyes kept catching on Maren. From his standing place at the front of the meeting, he could see her head on- he also knew that the slightest shift in her position would render him a perfect view up her skirt. He feared the repercussions if that did happen.
Next, Maren herself presented. Brandon had taken the time the night before to study up on her published work so that hearing her present it would simply be a repeat of what he already knew- that she was a brilliant scientist and that he wanted to have her. As she showed some slides on the overhead, John moved over into the seat she had occupied so that she could move the projector back in front of his vacant seat. Brandon was watching the gentle curve of her ass fill out her skirt as she bent to retrieve a fallen slide when John leaned over and whispered into his ear- so low that he, himself, could barely hear it.
"Lay off of Maren."
Brandon glanced over at John's very serious face. "What business is it of yours?" he whispered back, immediately returning his attention to Maren as to cut off any reply from John. What was this guy's problem? Did he sense the competition was too great? Was his happy-go-lucky, nature-loving, guitar-playing persona not enough for a girl like Maren when there were better fish in the sea? He could hear John's angry breathing for the remainder of her speech, and was only spared when the overhead was removed and John returned to his own seat. If it had been me, Brandon thought, I would have stayed where I was and let Maren sit in my old seat. It would have kept her away from the competition that way. This guy really had a lot to learn.
This sort of thing went on for a few more weeks. Though he predicted that no good was to come of his competitive relationship with John Feldman, he never would have imagined what was to come. It was like meeting the guy again for the first time.