Seconds later, the bartender set two matching drinks on the counter in front of the guy from the parking lot.
He wordlessly slid one of the glasses toward me. My eyes darted to his in surprise, and he shrugged. “You look thirsty.”
I picked up the glass with a grateful smile, and helped myself to a sip of the cool liquid. Jack and Coke—exactly what I wanted. He was observant. “Thank you.”
As he nodded, his eyes moved over my shoulder, in the general vicinity of Vivian. A small grin tugged at the corner of his lips. He glanced up at me briefly before giving undivided attention to his drink. “How’s your boyfriend?”
“Who? You mean the guy from earlier?”
“Well, I’m not talking about him.” His head nodded across the bar, where David was doing his best to catch the waitress’s attention. “That poor fucker doesn’t stand a chance, does he?”
“David is my friend,” I responded defensively. “And Kyle isn’t my boyfriend. You’re wrong on both counts.”
His eyes snapped to mine, then slowly lowered. Heat followed his gaze as it swept across my lips before settling on my neck. I was forced to sweep the hair off my shoulders in an attempt to cool off. It didn’t help.
He squinted at my neck like he considered devouring me right then and there. With the hot ball of lava tumbling through me, and ultimately settling in my core, I considered letting him. One look. That was all it took.
No guy had ever . . .
Oh, God. Vivian was totally right.
His mouth curved like he had read my thoughts. Then his hand shot out to mine as he stated, “Dylan.”
I accepted his hand with a smile. “Thea.”
His head angled closer to mine. “Thea?” When I nodded, he leaned back with a smirk. “Are you a librarian, or something?”
“What?” I demanded, suddenly on edge.
“Hot librarian,” he corrected with a lazy shrug, as if that somehow made his comment less insulting. At my unamused glare, he used his hand to cover the smile spreading across his face, and muttered, “I’m sorry. I don’t think I’ve ever met a Thea before. It’s, uh . . .”
“A librarian’s name, apparently,” I finished for him sourly.
He chuckled. “I like it, alright? I do. In fact, you’ve given me a new standard to associate with the name Thea. Next time I hear it, I won’t imagine a ninety-year-old librarian. I’ll picture you instead.”
He somehow made me like the sound of him thinking about me, despite the example he used. Some small, gullible part of me liked it. The rest of me reared back with revulsion.
“Need to picture me to get you through the night, huh?” I quipped.
His lips pursed as he considered my question. Then a broad grin turned his lips up. “Never really gone for a good girl before. Unless it’s an act . . .” His eyes swept down the length of me with obvious interest, and I folded my arms over my chest to interrupt his uncensored gaze. When he finally made it back to my eyes, he hooked an inquisitive brow.
“It’s not an act,” I stated firmly, “and I don’t play games.”
He shook his head at the counter, and muttered, “I didn’t think so.”
“Not like it would matter anyway.” My eyes lowered to his lap in mock consideration, then to the drink in front of him. “You’ve had so many of those, I doubt you could even play your part at this point.”
Dylan’s head rolled back as a deep laugh rumbled through him. I refused to acknowledge how sexy it sounded.
“First of all . . .” He lifted a finger in the air. “I’m always up to playing my part. Got it?” I kept my arms folded, my face unreadable, as he lifted another finger. “Secondly . . . I find it interesting that you know how much I’ve had to drink tonight.”
My arms slowly uncrossed under his amused and knowing gaze. His eyebrows shot up in silent inquiry, and when I offered no explanation, his grin broadened.
“I thought so.” With a flirty wink, he turned in his seat to face the bar.