#Chapter 36: Anatomy Ace
I had an anatomy exam the next day and after my shift with Tiffany I needed to get some studying done. It was nice and sunny out, which was a welcome relief after the weather being gloomy and rainy for the past couple of days, so I decided to find a spot to sit under a tree where there were few people.
A few minutes after I sat down in a spot a little ways out from campus in a quiet park, Luke showed up. He walked over to me and stood right in the way of the light.
“You’re blocking the sunlight,” I said, not looking up from my notebook.
“Oh. Sorry,” he said, stepping out of the way. He continued to stand there, just staring at me. I tried my best to ignore it in the hopes that he would just go away since I was not in a good mood
at all after seeing Enzo’s hickey, but he didn’t budge. Finally, I slammed down my pencil and glared up at him.
“If you’re gonna hang around, at least sit down or something,” I growled.
“Okay.” He immediately plopped down on the ground.
I couldn’t help but smirk a bit, amused
by his doglike obedience.
“What’s so funny?” he asked, cocking his head. As he did so, I could hear the faint rattle of his vertebrae clacking together.
“Nothing,” I replied, returning to my work. “You’re just… Do you have any thoughts of your own?”
Luke was silent for several moments
before speaking. “Of course I do,” he
“Why don’t you share them, then?”
He was silent again for much longer this time. After about ten minutes, when I had become reabsorbed in my studying and thought for sure that he had gone dormant or something, he suddenly spoke again.
“I think you made a mistake in your notes.”
I looked up suddenly and furrowed my brows. “Huh?”
Luke pointed a gloved finger at my notebook where I had a diagram of a skull with notes scribbled on it. “Right there. You got your terms mixed up. It’s occipital bone, not parietal bone. The parietal bone is over here.” He pointed to another spot on the skull.
I stared at my notes for a moment, then
realized that he was right and erased
my notes so I could fix them.
“Thanks,” I muttered.
He was silent again for several more minutes. I became absorbed in my studying again, only to notice eventually that he was inching closer and closer so he could see my notes.
“Hmm,” he muttered, rubbing his head.
I sighed and looked up from my work again. “What is it now?”
“Well, the glabella is used for facial expression, not supporting the lacrimal apparatus. That would be the lacrimal bone.”
Once again, I realized that Luke was right. I fixed my work.
“How do you know all this?” I asked.
“I mean, look at me,” Luke said, gesturing to himself. “I am a skeleton, after all. And besides, remember that I’ve spent decades in an anatomy
classroom. You pick up on things here and there.”
“I guess you’re right,” I said. “Do you have any other pointers you can give me, then? I really need to pass this exam.”
Luke and I spent the afternoon together under the tree while he helped me study. He was a surprisingly good anatomy tutor, even going so far as to show me where all of the bones were on his own skeleton. He was incredibly literal and couldn’t take a joke, but it was still surprisingly nice to spend time with someone who wasn’t either trying to backstab me or have sex with me.
By the end of our “tutoring” session, 1
had gained two things: expert
knowledge of anatomy, and a new
The next morning, I woke up bright and early. I felt more enthusiastic about life; while my relationship with Enzo may have come to an end, my date with James was now a day closer and I also felt oddly happy to have made friends with that strange talking skeleton.
I jumped out of bed early, showered, ate breakfast and had my coffee, and then I was on my way to my exam. The sun was shining already, the birds were singing, the autumn air was crisp and cool, and I felt great so long as I didn’t think about Enzo.
When it was time to start the exam, the professor handed out the test sheets.
“There are thirty multiple choice questions and six short answer questions,” the professor, David Bowman, said as he handed the sheets out. He was a stern professor, but he was still friendly and always asked us to just call him David instead of Dr. Bowman. “Best of luck. You can leave when you hand in your exam.”
I took a deep breath and started to answer the questions. The answers came so easily to me now, all thanks to Luke’s help!
I was the first to turn my exam in, and David raised an eyebrow at me as I handed it to him.
“That was quick, Nina,” he said, checking his watch. “I hope you didn’t. have a cheat sheet.”
I heard snickering behind me and knew it was Lisa, who always sat in the front like a teacher’s pet, but I ignored her.” No cheat sheet,” I replied. “Just a good tutor.”
David smiled and addressed the rest of the class. “I can think of a few of you who could benefit from a good tutor,” he said, which caused a few students to chuckle and a few others to turn red in
the face. He looked back at me and smiled. “Good job, Nina. See you next class.”
I nodded and left the room, feeling an extra spring in my step for the first time in ages. I’d have to thank Luke for his help; what did skeletons like for gifts?
When I stepped out of the building and into the sunshine, however, that extra spring in my step faded along with my smile.
Enzo was leaning on the railing with his hands in his pockets. He pushed himself up and turned toward me. I swallowed and nervously gripped the strap of my bag in my hand, as if that would calm my nerves.
“Hey, Enzo,” I said, trying to sound casual and not like I wanted to jump off a bridge. “Are you waiting for Lisa?”
He scrunched his eyebrows together.” What? No. I’m here for you.”
I took in a sharp breath and clutched my bag even harder as I prepared myself to hear him tell me that he was sick of chasing me, that I was his mate and he was going to kill me if I kept turning down his advances.
“It’s nice outside. Will you go on a walk with me?” he asked instead.