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Stories from the Verse
Chapter 86: Brown 136
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Somewhere someone once said that if you stick your nose into business that doesn’t concern you, you’re likely to learn something you didn’t want to know. Derek was now heartbroken: Sammie had a boyfriend.
It was apparently rather serious. She was ditching her security detail to meet with him. It seems it wasn’t being reported; Derek supposed that daughters of diplomats in general had a reputation for escaping supervision, and no one wanted to ruin his career as a diplomatic security agent over the cleverness of a teenager. She always returned within a couple hours, told her custodian she wouldn’t tell on him if he wouldn’t tell on her and that she was perfectly safe, and he never reported her absence to anyone. Derek probably was the only one who knew where they went, and it was always coffee shops or restaurants or public parks where she couldn’t get into too much trouble other than possibly being abducted, and the boyfriend seemed very protective. His name was Dorin, and he was probably about twenty or twenty-one--an older boy; teenaged girls were always attracted to older boys. He was teaching her Romanian; she apparently was hoping that her father would remain on this assignment long enough for her to reach eighteen and marry him so she could stay in country.
Ah, well, Derek mused. It won’t last. He’d heard enough to know that fifteen year old girls often think that they have found the love of their life, and they are usually wrong. He consoled himself partly with the idea that Dorin seemed good to her, partly with the idea that they were sure to break up eventually and Derek might be there when they did, and partly with the idea that had she fallen in love with him it wouldn’t have lasted long anyway, because these teenage loves almost never do.
Still, while he was trying to pursue his other investigations, he kept an eye on her. He told himself he was keeping her safe; he knew he was really doing it because he was a bit obsessed with her, but it would not do to admit that to himself.
As to the old stories that have long been here: