Oh, crap! Are you kidding me? I'd just said his name!
"Davy? Is that you, Davy Sandstone?"
"Yes, but the name's Dave. And you would be?" His cluelessness didn't surprise me. Our interaction had been somewhat strained and, at least for me, painful over the years.
Since elementary school, our paths had crossed at the pool (where Davy had tried to drown me), the library (where Davy always managed to beat me in the Summer Reading Race), or at the movies (where we both worked the summer we were 16, and where he became known as The Popcorn Extortionist). Whenever I ran into him, I tried to exchange nothing more than an unhealthy glare. Oh, there was that one fall, when Davy had expressed fleeting interest in my friend, but I hadn't spent much time with him since we both went to Meadowlark Elementary School. And why didn’t we spend time together? Because of something I like to call The Name Shortening Incident. For the longest time, I despised Davy for that incident (I know, it's petty), but I'd gotten past it some time ago, or so I claimed. I wondered if Davy ever thought about it.
"It's Cecilia." My voice in my own ears held a guarded, almost rude, tone, and I wondered if Davy could detect it. "I had no idea you'd be here, at Michigan. I thought you went to MSU? How is everything with you?" I asked him with a saccharine smile plastered to my face. Inside, I kicked myself for choosing this day to put my nose into someone else's business.
"Oh, Cecil!" he exclaimed, shortening my name again. "Good to see you, although I didn't recognize you without your glasses! I'm here for the art program...I decided to transfer...and I came up a little early to find out where my classes will be. Plus, one of the orientation leaders said he'd help me with a new technique I've been wanting to learn, but that meant I needed to be here today."
Davy and art? His choice surprised me. He'd always struck me as the computer programmer type or maybe even a scientist, not an artist. I tried to excuse myself as I felt my blood starting to boil, but for some reason, he felt the need to chat, and wanted to catch up on the years we'd missed. I listened with half an ear, hoping to find a good time to escape. When Davy started talking about his parents, though, I listened more closely. I had always liked his mom and dad. I was unsettled to learn that they had divorced, and that his dad now lived in Norway. Davy filled me in on the details of some of the kids we used to hang around with, and what classes he'd be taking. We also swapped stories about the bookstore.
"One book was $250! Can you believe that? And I only get to use it for one semester!" I said. I surprised myself with my friendliness.
"I can top that! My art supplies came to a grand total of $450." Davy's animated face danced before mine. We were both certain that our parents wouldn't believe us when we sent them the book bills, and I noticed that, once again, he had bested me. Was everything a competition with him?
Despite my initial hesitation, I allowed Davy (considering I'd always just think of him as that little kid from the past, and really, two could play this game) to show me where the storage closets and cafeteria were located. With a half-smile on his face, he walked me to my room, leaning in against the doorjamb as I placed my things on the floor inside.
"Mine's the door with Luke Skywalker on the front. I drew him in chalk!" Davy seemed proud as he pointed his index finger in the direction of his room. "And if you need something, Cecil…"
Davy didn't finish, just looked up at me with something igniting his eyes. Remorse? Mischief? Something else? I'd avoided Davy for so long, I found reading him to be impossible. I looked to my left, toward his room, which loomed four doors down on the other side of the hall. Would it be good or bad having Davy Sandstone so close? My past experiences with Davy had jaded me, and I didn't understand the boy who stood before me. What did he want? Why was he being so nice?
"Listen, Cecil, I have to go, but I'll see you around. We should catch up some more, you know?"
"Uh, yeah, okay. But Davy, it's Cecilia. Please call me Cecilia," I stared at his retreating back, still not sure what to make of his behavior. As I closed the door, I heard a laugh trickle from down the hallway. The only thing I was sure of was that once again, Davy had played me.