Meeting Face to Face- Part 3
Warning: None, Fluff
After school tutoring with Miss Emery Thomas is in full swing by the time Chris Evans makes it down the hallway to her classroom, hiding behind a bouquet of flowers. Chris can’t believe what he is seeing. There are math books, papers, food wrappers, and kids everywhere. Music is playing from the computer. And the most amazing backside he’s had the pleasure of seeing in weeks is dancing up at the whiteboard. The small, petite redhead has this perfect bounce to the music as she scrawls a math algorithm on the board. If his math teacher looked like that, maybe he would have paid more attention in class! As he looks around the room, he sees Ms. Thomas seems to have that effect on several of her male students, but she seems unaware of this fact.
And then he really SEES the room… He sees himself- or rather, Captain America- staring back from nearly every surface of the room. Movie posters, fan made art work, lots of 1940s themed memes ‘I want YOU to study,’ and “I want YOU to put your name on your paper,’ all with Cap giving the orders. No wonder the girl got all nervous when he asked about her dog’s name! This girl has got it bad! She has a crush on Captain America! His eyes land for a moment of the framed photo on her desk and his heart stops. This can’t be real, he thinks to himself.
All this seemed to be frozen in time, but it was really happening in a blink of an eye, when someone shouted, “Flowers! For you, Ms. Thomas!”
The lovely teacher continues her little dance and sings along, “boys like a little more booty to hold at night,” as she turns to face the door. Chris immediately wishes he could hold the flowers down lower to cover something other than his face. That is a fine ass she has, and thanks to the song, that’s all he can think about for a moment. She freezes, her face and neck turning a brilliant shade of red. She squeals out loud, “Oh, no! You can’t be here!”
“What? Why not?” Chris asks, confused, torn between hiding his face behind the flowers or hiding something else…
“I know those eyes! It really is you! These are my students! I am working! You can’t be here!” Standing next to her Captain America posters, knowing he probably saw her little dance number, is just a bit much… She steps forward to take the flowers as he holds them out to her. As their hands brush against each other, it’s like the room stops. She instantly feels like her life is about to change in a big way and Chris can’t catch his breath as he sees her beauty up close for the first time. There is an audible gasp from the students in the room as they realize who the delivery boy is.
“Holy shit, Ms. T! It’s Captain America!” shouts Stephen.
“Language!” comes back the collected response of EVERYONE in the classroom, and laughter can be heard down the hallway.
One of the students, gestures at his ball cap, and signals Chris to take it off. “It’s one of her pet peeves,” the kid whispers and points at another Captain America poster, “I want YOU to take off your hat.” Chris sheepishly removes the hat, and ruffles his hair. Emery can’t think for a moment. This relaxed look is so much better than the longer, slicked back style he had been photographed with earlier in the fall. Her fingers ache to rake her hands through his hair. So instead, she stuffs her hands in her pants pockets. At this point, she doesn’t trust herself to keep her hands to herself. Her grip on reality seems to be slipping away.
“You guys solve those problems on the board. I’ll be right back,” Emery brushes past Chris as she walks toward the door. She didn’t mean to bump his shoulder, but they are just so damn big. Everything about him is big; his shoulders, his smile, his laugh, the flower arrangement he brought… She blushes at her next thought about what else might be big… She can’t breathe; she can’t believe this is happening. Emery sets the flowers down on the table. She steps into the hallway, and he follows after her. He’s already decided he will follow that cute ass anywhere…
“The flowers are beautiful; thank you. I kinda freaked out there, sorry. It really is you…” Emery can’t make sense of her words. She desperately hopes she is speaking English, and she sneaks a sideways glance at him as they walk down the hallway together. “Hi. I’m Emery,” she says as she reaches over to shake his hand.
Chris just has a grin on his face; the one she sees in his movies. The one she rewinds and watches again and again, because she likes the way it makes her stomach flip… And she realizes now that he is here next to her, that flip feels like a circus trapeze artist has taken up a performance in her stomach. He reaches out and shakes her hand. Her tiny hand gets lost inside his; so soft and warm. “Hi. I’m Chris. Evans. But you figured that out…” He continues to grin down at her as they walk the hall.
“I have to sit.” The poor young woman looks like she is about to pass out from shock, or die from embarrassment.
“Ok,” Chris says, as he looks around for a place to sit. He laughs when he realizes she was serious, and she has just slid down the wall to sit on the floor next to a group of lockers. He slides down next to her and whispers, “Breathe. I’m real. I’m not a crazy stalker guy… How do I know you aren’t a stalker?! Have you seen that classroom? I don’t even think my sister had that many New Kids on the Block posters on her walls when we were growing up!”
“So, I admire Captain America, and all that he stands for,” Emery says with an exasperated grin. She pauses for a moment and takes a few calming breaths. She can’t believe she is sitting on the floor in the hallway outside her classroom with Chris Evans! “I can’t help it if the actor who plays the part just happens to be so damn good looking-“ she throws up her hand to stop him from saying “Language”- “I think I regret that poster the most, but a student made it for me last Spring. Most of the memes you saw, kids made for me. I’m always nagging at the kids about using proper language.” She adds with a mischievous grin, “But what the fuck do I know? I’m just a teacher!”
A girl who so willingly drops the f-bomb, who lets it lovingly slide from her lips like that, is definitely Chris’s kind of girl. Emery seems to be a “good girl” who sometimes likes to be bad. He always likes trying to get under the skin of that kind of girl… And watching her mouth move as she talks has his brain and his heart racing… Hell, he just actually met this woman 5 minutes ago, and already he wants to kiss her. To try to distract himself, he twirls the ball cap in his hands. The distraction doesn’t work. He still wants to touch her, wants to kiss her.
The classroom door opens, and Stephen’s head pops around the corner. “Hey, Ms. T” he yells. Emery and Chris both turn their heads to look at the student, and are stunned to see a camera flash before the student goes back into the room.
“Shit!” Chris grumbles and jumps up. “Any chance we can keep that off social media?”
Emery jumps up too, and dashes to the room. “Drop your phones! You know my rules. What happens here stays here. No pictures. Please.” Phones clatter as they hit the desks, followed by the kids put their phones away. Stephen apologizes.
“I wasn’t going to post it. I just thought you’d want a picture…” he hangs his head sadly.
“Somehow, sweetie, I don’t think I’m going to need a photo to remember this day,” Emery says to her student, as she pats him on the shoulder. “So everyone sit. Let’s finish up these problems; we have 15 minutes left before I must leave.”
The group of students giggle when they realize even Captain America followed her orders also. Chris sits in a desk towards the back of the room. He gives a little salute back to the teacher and grabs a piece of paper and pencil off the desk next to him. He watches in awe for the next fifteen minutes as she wraps up her test review with the students. Watching her model the first problem, he really did think he would have understood math better if he’d had a teacher like her, and it’s not just because she is cute. Chris can see she truly cares for her students and has a passion for the math she is teaching. Her actions remind him of his sister, Carly, and how she controls the classroom. Emery’s explanation of math makes it seem so easy. Damn, a smart girl, with a dog, who curses?! Maybe he had been looking for girls in all the wrong places…
Chris realizes he won’t control his heart for long. He can’t decide if he should congratulate himself for signing up for a dating service or lock himself away for the craziness he has just added to his life. It seemed like a good idea at the time to try to find someone in the same state where he’d be filming two different movies over the course of six months. Yes, he wanted to meet a nice girl to spend time with, but he still isn’t sure he’s ready to change his whole life. Maybe he should stop this before it starts. He wouldn’t just be changing his life, but hers as well, and maybe not in a good way. She’s a teacher with responsibilities here, and he’s an actor, dividing time between LA and Boston.
But after messaging for weeks, and now finally seeing Ms. Emery Thomas in person, he realizes he really has no other choice but to make changes… He has to get to know her. They will just have to deal with everything else later.
Chris solves the second and third math problems, and sees the surprise on “Ms. Thomas’s” face when he gets them right before the students do. So the way to this woman’s heart is Captain and math? I can do this, he thinks to himself.
He realizes his stomach is growling, so instead of solving the last problem, he scribbles something on his paper and holds it up to show her, just as the students are holding up their papers for a spot check as well. She applauds those who got it right, corrects those that didn’t, and comments, “Mr. Evans. We will have to discuss that after class.” A few of the students saw what he had written, and giggle and begin to whisper among themselves.
Emery Thomas looks at her watch. As much as she knows the kids don’t want to leave, she knows it’s time to go. She has promised the custodians she will always have the kids out by 5:30, so they can lock up. And she really has had so much fun with them today…. If she is honest with herself, she knows she doesn’t want this study session to end because she is nervous about what might come next. Chris Evans is sitting in her classroom, solving math problems and holding up a sign, inviting her to dinner!
Stephen and Rachel get the rest of the students to start cleaning the room. Emery wonders when they will finally realize they both want to be more than friends… Rachel reminds the group that they ate all the granola bars and to try to bring more next week. The boys stack chairs while the girls tidy up the desks. Chris and Emery just stare across the room at one another, waiting to see what will happen next.
Stephen steps up to his favorite teacher. He leans in and whispers, “Ms. Thomas, you’re always telling us about being a good person, and how we should always do what’s right when no one is watching? I was in Atlanta over the summer visiting dad and the step dragon. To get away, I found myself on the movie site a few times. Do you know he stayed late, when filming was done, and helped the crew sweep and clean up? And that he bought water bottles for everyone that day it got over 100 degrees? I know it was all over the internet,” – he points at the picture of Captain sweeping the street that says, “I am not your maid-,” “but I was there those days. I saw it with my own eyes. You said earlier today to me that maybe the guy who had messaged you wasn’t who you thought he was… Maybe, what if that guy was better? Don’t write him off cuz you’re a teacher, and he’s an actor. You are awesome. You always put everyone else’s needs in front of your own. You deserve amazing. And you know you can’t get much more amazing than Captain America! Seriously, he’s here in town, filming this other movie- how perfect is that? Don’t waste a once in a lifetime chance… That’s what you always tell us. Remind me tomorrow, and I will show you how to work the speaker on your phone.” Steven turns to wave good bye to Chris, as the last of the students leave the room.
Emery stares after him in disbelief. Emery smiles, knowing Stephen only has her best interests at heart, and she wonders again about the type of man that student will be when he grows up.
Emery erases the board, ignoring Chris, and tries to center herself. She is trying to get her heart rate under control, and to slow her brain. Her mantra of “Shhhhh… Just shhhhh….,” something she saw in a video interview of Chris’s doesn’t quite work if Chris is actually in the room, causing her elevated anxiety. She drops the eraser, slightly frustrated with herself. She can’t remember the last time a man left her feeling so flustered. She can’t decide if that’s a good thing, or a bad thing.
When she gathers the courage to turn and look at him, she is surprised to find he is right behind her. How did he sneak up on her and she didn’t even know? Because right now, she is fully aware that he is next to her. Chris smells of manly cologne, most likely Gucci Guilty, and something earthy, a scent she can’t put her finger on. She is surprised to see hints of both red and grey hairs in his beard on his (tanned?) cheeks, and wishes to reach out and feel if his beard is as soft as she always imagined it would be. Those blue eyes are hidden behind his long lashes as he looks down at her and steps closer. Seeing those lashes against his tan skin does something to her insides that really can’t be described. She knows it’s like nothing she’s ever felt before. Who gets all excited about eyelashes?! She thinks to herself. Someone who hasn’t been around a real man in quite a long while, she realizes.
From across the room, Chris watches Emery battle as she tries to control her emotions. He’s not sure what she is thinking, and he is afraid to ask. He steps towards her and gazes down at her. He aches to reach out and brush his thumbs across the freckles on her cheeks, to wrap his fingers in her red hair. But the look on her face and the change in her body language tells him this isn’t the time or place. Instead, he stops in time, and his arms move past her face, landing on the whiteboard on either side of her, effectively making a cage for her, trapping her near him. He can almost hear her heart racing, and he can definitely see the catch in her breath as her chest moves up and down, trying to control her breathing. “Shhhh… I’m not going to kiss you here… Not today anyway. Now, how about that dinner?”
There is a noise at the door, and Chris jumps away, as the custodian enters the room. The older man is shocked to see Ms. Thomas looking guilty and rosy cheeked. “Ms. Thomas, so sorry! I thought you’d left to get West already…”
“West! Oh, no! She’ll be eating the couch by now. Come on!” Emery grabs her school bag and a stack of papers from the table and rushes out the room. Chris nods in approval at the Agents of Shield messenger bag that bangs against her hip as she darts down the hallway. He keeps a few steps behind just so he can watch her ass.
“Stop staring at my ass, Evans,” she says with a laugh.
“But it’s a nice ass,” he tells her as they reach the door to the parking lot. He pulls her to him then, and lightly kisses her on the lips. She groans against him and says, “No. Not here. Not like this. You really don’t understand. Students are still around and West will tear apart my house.”
She points at what is obviously his rental car; this late in the evening, there are only a few cars left in the lot. “Since you probably don’t know your way around town, and I doubt you are a serial killer, ride with me to my place. I’ll take care of West, and then we can get food, and come back to get your car?”
She phrased it as a question, but it really was more of a command, in what Chris is quickly becoming to think of as her “teacher voice.” He’s wondering how other commands might sound in her teacher voice, and blushes at the thought. He shakes his head yes, and follows her to her car, not the least bit surprised to see a “JARVIS is my co-pilot” bumper sticker on the back of the car.
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