Lessons Learned Ch. 07: Midterm Exams

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The story picks up at the end of the seventh week of Brinna & Zach’s Human Sexuality class.

Lessons Learned, Ch. 7: The Midterm

“Listen,” Dr. B barked at us during the last class before next Tuesday’s midterm, “if you miss class and we’re showing videos that day, don’t come to me later asking to borrow them, to make up any work or points you missed. The department won’t be lending the videos anymore, since one of the frats decided to hold a movie night, and charge admission. Idiots!”

“It was Reggie and his frat,” Zach whispered to me. We snickered together, as the rest of the class laughed at Dr. B’s announcement.

“Can we study for the midterm?” Zach asked anxiously. “This should be the easiest test I have, but I need the weekend to study for my other tests, and to check over my engineering midterm project, and–“

“Okay, Zach! Take a breath!” I laughed. “It’s all right.” I lowered my voice and leaned toward him. “I’m on my period anyway. We’ll study for as long as you want, and it’ll free up your weekend for your other classes. Anyway, we probably don’t even need to study for this test. It’s not going to be that hard, really.” I didn’t envy Zach his other exams next week. He was taking fifteen credits this term, as part of his double major.

“Sorry, Brinna,” he said with a grin. “I’m just, well, I have to be gone next Thursday and Friday with my advisor, so I have to take all my tests by Wednesday afternoon. I forgot that I won’t be seeing you next Thursday.”

“Where are you going with your advisor?” I asked curiously.

“Um, ah, we’re delivering a joint paper at a conference. Out of town.”

I stopped walking and looked at Zach.

“You’re delivering a joint paper at a conference with your advisor?” He nodded. “Isn’t that kind of a big deal, Zach?” He shrugged, and flushed slightly. Of all the things for him to be shy about with me! “Zach,” I nudged him with my elbow, “it is a big deal. Why didn’t you say something before?” I asked. “We could have celebrated.” I gave him a sly smile.

“It’s just boring stuff, Brinna. You know, nerd stuff.” He ducked his head. “We can still celebrate, if you want.” He glanced up at me from under his lashes, with a warm look I recognized well.

“A special celebration, maybe?” I asked in a low voice.

The sexual tension had been building between us, as we progressed towards a major goal of our little project: actual intercourse. We’d come close a few times, during some very heated moments, and I knew it was simply a matter of time before we crossed that threshold. Zach surprised me with his willingness to take his time reaching his goals. He always put maximum effort into being the best student possible.

Just as he opened his mouth to respond, a shrill ringing sound issued from his backpack.

“Sorry! Hang on.” He removed his backpack, digging around frantically in it until he found and withdrew his mobile phone. He glanced at the display, then shot me an alarmed look. “Um, okay, just a minute.” He pressed a button and put the phone to his ear. “Hey!” he said briskly into the phone, eyeing me. I wondered if his grandpa was calling unexpectedly.

Zach then blurted out an incomprehensible string of sounds, before pausing to listen to the person on the other end.

“Yes, but Mika, can you hold a minute?” He covered the mouthpiece of the phone. “Um, Brinna, I have to take this call. It might be, uh, lengthy. Can I meet you? In our place?”

Intrigued by the mystery of his call, I nodded, leaving him to it.

I was curious, though. Was it a girl on the other end? In response to my urging, Zach had finally asked Jen out to a mid-week movie on campus. He refused to ask her out a second time, but they appeared to remain on friendly terms. At least he’d broken the ice on that little side project, I’d decided, and left him to continue at will.

It took Zach forty-five minutes to join me in the office. By then my curiosity was palpable. I waited impatiently for him to retrieve his textbook and settle at the desk. I left my scanning and joined him.

“What was that about?” I asked curiously.

“Wellllllll,” Zach drawled out. “Um, just someone calling about another project.”

“What was that you said at the beginning?”

Zach flushed pink. Zach, who hadn’t blushed with me in at least two weeks, was blushing again! Who had been on the phone?

“It was Finnish.”
“Don’t tell me you speak Finnish,” I laughed. “Isn’t it one of the hardest languages to learn?”

“I don’t speak much of it,” he said defensively.

“Why do you know Finnish?” I demanded, leaning toward him in fascination. Just when I thought I knew so much about him, he revealed yet another secret.

“I don’t speak a lot of it!” he insisted. He looked at me and sighed in exasperation. “Fine, Brinna, because I know you won’t stop until you know everything. I spent a month in Finland, on a special internship, before my senior year in high school. I’ve been there a couple of summers since then, for about three weeks each canlı bahis time, or sometimes at their U.S. offices. It was for a technical project, and one of the engineers is at their U.S. office this week. He wanted to talk about it and, after you left, we spoke in English. I can’t talk about it anymore, though,” he cautioned. “Non-disclosure agreements and all that. Happy?”

“You bloody genius,” I blurted, grinning. I leaned over and planted a kiss on his lips. “Joint papers at conferences, and special projects in Finland of all places.” Peeling back Zach’s layers continued to reveal surprising tidbits of information. It was a shame his shyness prevented many people from knowing him better.

“Can we just study?” he asked plaintively, trying to steer me away from the topic. “Like normal friends do before exams?”

“Oh, so now we’re normal friends,” I teased. “Does that mean you don’t want to see me naked anymore?”

“Oh, god,” Zach moaned dramatically. “Please don’t ever think that.” He smiled, and leaned over to kiss me hard on the mouth. “Please?”

We laughed before turning to our notes and textbooks. For nearly two hours we sat, side by side, alternately between quizzing each other and studying quietly.

“I wish it weren’t such a busy time,” Zach said regretfully as we were parting. He leaned in, kissing me goodbye. “Maybe we could do some celebrating after our exam?” he asked in a hesitant voice.

“If you feel ready to celebrate,” I responded readily.

“I-I think so.” He swallowed and shifted from foot to foot. I regarded him carefully. Zach’s confidence had been on a steadily improving, considering he’d barely been able to make eye contact when we first met. Just now, it appeared his confidence had reverted to that of the early weeks.

“Tell me what’s wrong,” I said bluntly.

“It’s just, well, I don’t want to disappoint you, Brinna. I don’t want to ruin this.”

“You can’t disappoint me, Zach. You never have, not really.”

“Not yet,” he muttered. “Always a first time.”

“Stop that,” I said firmly. “If you don’t feel ready yet, it’s okay. But, have you considered, all that worry about disappointing me is only being built up in your head by you?” I squeezed his hand, then shoved him playfully toward the door. “Go study. Worry later. I’ll see you Tuesday.”

* * * * * * * * *

We powered through Dr. B’s exam, being the first two to finish and able to leave the classroom early.

“My advisor wants me to meet him at three, about our presentation,” Zach said anxiously. “Will we, I mean, it’s already two, and I know we talked about, um, is there enough time for, for us?” he finished lamely.

“If we get to the library fast enough, we could have time for some celebrating, don’t you think?” I felt myself reaching for his hand but stopped short, because we were still walking through the middle of the campus. It’s just that he looked so young and uncertain at that moment, and I wanted to reassure him.

Also, was it my imagination, or was Zach walking slower than usual? I kept having to adjust my pace, so I didn’t leave him behind.

He was still nervous, I determined. It was tempting to hurry him along. I resisted it.

“What do you think your advisor wants?” I asked, attempting to distract him.

“He set up a practice presentation,” Zach replied. “We’re going to do a run through of our presentation in front of some of the other professors, and a few of their students.” He bit his bottom lip. “I hate public speaking. I wish-,” he cut off abruptly.

“Wish what?” I nudged him with my elbow.

“I wish you could be there Thursday. But that’s stupid.”

“Would it help if I were there?” It was impossible, of course, but I was curious about his reasoning.

“Well, maybe I could focus on you, and block out the rest of the audience. It would be more like talking just to you, even though it might put you to sleep.” He smiled briefly. “Nerdy stuff, you know.” Zach held the library door open for me. “But I think if you were there, I wouldn’t be so nervous. About the speech part anyway. You make me nervous in other ways,” he confessed with a short laugh.

We continued our conversation until we reached the basement hallway leading to our space. Zach fell silent, chewing on the inside of his cheek as we walked.

We let ourselves in and slung our backpacks and jackets into the usual corner. Zach stood by the door, fidgeting, seemingly uncertain about what to do with his hands, before crossing his arms and tucking them against his body.

“Are you really all right, Zach?” I asked, feeling concerned. “You look like you’re awaiting execution or something.”

“N-no! I mean, yeah, I’m fine, I’m just, you know, stressed. A little. And nervous, okay?” His eyes darted around the room. ‘Shy Zach’ was making a wicked comeback right before my eyes.

“Today you look a lot like that guy I met on the first day of class, nervous and ready to blush at the drop of a hat.”

“I’m better than that now, aren’t I, Brinna?”

I smiled bahis siteleri and crossed the room to where he stood. His hands came to rest on my hips, and he pulled me gently against him. Taking his face in my hands, I gave him a soft, lingering kiss.

“Much better.” I brought one hand to rest lightly on the back of his neck, before claiming his mouth for a deeper kiss. He leaned into me, arms slipping around my waist and trapping me tightly against his body. I made a small noise of agreement against his lips as his tongue slid into my mouth. He teased my tongue and lips, running his hands down to grasp my ass firmly, kneading the flesh with his fingers. “Tell me what you want today, Zach,” I whispered huskily, as his mouth traced my jawline. I tilted my head to give him better access to my neck.

“Everything,” he mumbled, bringing one hand between us and running it up under my shirt. He sent his fingers questing inside my bra, finding my hardening nipple and rubbing it with two fingers. I sucked in a breath, pushing my hips hard into his, wanting to feel his growing excitement.

Instead, I found only the slightest swelling there.

Reluctantly, I put a small amount of distance between us. I dropped my hand to his waist, and fumbled with the button on his pants.

“I want to touch you,” I insisted. His mouth came down on mine, hard. He unhooked my bra with one hand, loosening it under my shirt, so that his fingers could dance over my flesh unencumbered. I wished at that moment I could blink our clothes out of existence, and feel my naked flesh against his.

I loosened his fly and sent my questing hand under the waistband of his briefs, fingertips sliding over the soft patch of pubic hair, and onto his cock. I grasped him and he moaned into my mouth.

His thick cock wasn’t growing and swelling the way it normally did in response to our play. It twitched somewhat weakly with my fingers wrapped around it. I ruthlessly crushed the swell of disappointment and yes, insecurity that flared inside of me. I drew back and studied his face.

“Brinna,” he said, sounding desperate, “it’ll be okay. It’ll get hard.” His hips shifted, pushing against my hand. “Don’t stop. Please?”

“We’ve barely started anything,” I reasoned. “Hang on.” I used my hands to push his pants and briefs down past his ass, exposing his semi-flaccid member. I cupped his heavy balls in one hand, lifting, stroking, rolling them gently while I wrapped the other hand around his dick. I tugged slowly on his cockhead as a small sigh escaped his lips.

Zach left off touching me, bumping back against the door, leaning against it, his hands braced behind him on the wood. His head tilted back, and his eyelids dropped closed.

“I want this,” he assured me in a strained voice. “I do, I want this, I don’t know what’s wrong with me.” Another sigh, heavier this time. “Oh my god, Brinna, I’m fucking it up.”

“Stop that,” I warned. “Listen to me, Zach. Just listen to my voice and get out of your own head.” I continued with my hands on him. “I want you to think about me. Picture me naked. I’m on the mats, my legs spread, waiting for you to come to me.” I stepped closer and pressed my lips to his ear. “I’m wet, Zach, aroused and ready to feel you inside me for the first time,” I whispered. “I can see you standing above me, I can feel your eyes running over my body. You’re watching me play with my bare tits, nipples hard as marbles, and aching to feel your tongue on them.” He moaned softly as his cock stirred in my hand. “Just picture it, Zach, picture it and focus on me. Because I’m burning to have you inside of me for the first time.” I sucked and nipped at his earlobe. “You kneel between my legs and take your big cock in your hand. You lean in, and I can feel you run your cockhead over my wet slit, up and down, getting it slippery with my fluids.” He groaned and I felt him swell a bit more in my hand.

“Don’t stop, Brinna,” he begged, “not ’til I’m hard.”

I was enflamed by this time, my own words working on me the way I hoped they were working on Zach. I longed for him to do exactly what I was describing; for him to enter me, fill me up, and fuck me with his beautiful cock. So I told him, graphically, exactly what I wanted from him, and his shaft pulsated, beginning to grow in my hand in response to my words.

He drew his head back from mine and turned it. His eyes were still closed, with his mental strain evident from the tight lines at their corners. His lips found mine. We kissed, open-mouthed, with heat.

He was stiffening, still not as rigid as he normally would get, but his body was taking over from his worried mind at last.

We both froze in place when someone tried to turn the doorknob. Zach straightened, eyes widening in panic. We heard someone muttering outside the door, then the jingle of keys.

“Shit!” he hissed and, as I stepped back from him, he began stuffing himself back into his pants. I automatically smoothed my hands over my clothes, then my hair. My bra was still undone and loose under my bahis şirketleri shirt, but that was not such a big deal.

We regarded each other, and I shrugged, both of us puzzled. For the past seven weeks, we had not seen anyone else down here.

“Do I look okay?” I asked.

Zach nodded and flicked a hand at himself.

“Yeah, you’re good. Just leave your shirt untucked.”

He went to sit behind the desk, and I opened the door to find the retreating back of the custodian.

Hearing the door open, he turned back.

“Hey! Is the office in use?”

“Oh, well, I usually use it Tuesday and Thursday. For scanning. Work study,” I babbled. “Did you need something?” I smiled a little too brightly.

“Yeah, thought I had the right key, but I guess it’s on the other ring. I always wax and buff the floors down here twice a semester, at midterm and after finals. You gonna be long, ’cause I really need to get started?”

“Ummm, no, it’s fine. We were just studying today, but we can go upstairs while you work,” I said, hiding my disappointment and frustration.

Zach and I gathered up our belongings and cleared out. Wordlessly, we ascended the stairs to the main floor of the library.

“Let’s go to the third floor,” I said, and we went to the quiet study corner where I had waited for Zach after his scavenger hunt.

There were two students studying together on the padded bench, and another student in one of the three rooms.

“Unbelievable,” I muttered, annoyed. Between the janitor and students studying for midterms, we’d been thoroughly thwarted today.

Zach was shaking his head slightly at me. Ignoring his signal, I led him into the room furthest from the bench, locked the door behind us, and set my stuff down.

“Not here!” he protested, “I-I can’t do it here, Brinna. Not with people right outside.”
“Zach! We’re not going to fuck in here, not for our first time. Jeez, I’m horny, not crazy.”

He flopped down into the available chair and leaned his elbows on the desk, and buried his face in his hands.

“I’m so sorry,” he whispered. “I never thought, I mean, I never thought I couldn’t get hard enough for you.” He cleared his throat. “I am sorry for today, Brinna. So sorry. You know I want to be with you, right? You know it wasn’t because of you or anything.”

“Shut up, Zach,” I said, not unkindly. “I shouldn’t have even pushed it on you this week. C’mon, you’ve only got three days to do your finals, while the rest of us have five days. You’ve got a public speech to give, and then you’ve got me pushing to get fucked. It’s just stress, and maybe performance anxiety thrown in there too. It was a bad week for us to try.”

“I’m so fucking embarrassed,” he said from behind his hands.

“Don’t be, baby,” I urged. “You were getting hard when we got interrupted.” I rubbed his shoulders, digging into the tense muscles lightly with my fingers. Don’t beat yourself up, okay? It’ll be all right next time. Next Tuesday, we’ll meet again, and if it happens, it happens. If it doesn’t, you can eat me out until I cum,” I said, lightly teasing, trying to ease his tension.

He took a deep breath, exhaling with a sigh, sounding miserable without uttering a word.

“Next time, I’ll just go down on you,” I said seductively, pressing my breasts against his back and shoulders, and throwing my arms around his neck from behind. “I’ll take you into my mouth and feel every inch of you grow there.” I kissed his temple. “But only if you promise to stop this embarrassed bullshit and kiss me.”

Zach became motionless. From previous experience, I knew he was analyzing my words. Finally, he dropped his hands, and spun the chair to face me. I leaned down and brushed my lips over his, once, twice. The third time, he caught my face in his hands and held me steady while he kissed me. There was an urgency in his kiss, and I knew he would not easily forgive himself for this afternoon’s failure.

I straddled his lap, and put my arms over his shoulders.

“Tell me what’s on your mind.”

“You,” he said softly. He leaned his head against my shoulder, his lips lightly my neck. “What happens with us after we, um, you know, after we have sex? Once it happens, is that the end of this?”

“Do you want it to be?” I asked, starting to understand his earlier hesitation.


“That’s what you’ve been worried about? That we’re going to fuck once and stop everything? Is that one time going to make you more confident?” I asked, teasing him in an effort to lighten his worries. “We have all semester, Zach, if that’s what you want. We can stop anytime, or we can keep going for the seven or eight weeks we have left.” I took his face in my hands, tilting it up so I could look in his eyes. “Tell me what you want.”

“Everything,” he said, smiling.

Several minutes later, we were still heavily making out when his watch began to beep.

“Dammit!” he snapped, as we were interrupted for the second time that day.

“What is it?”

“I have to go. My presentation.” He sighed, hands still roaming free over my back. “Would you come listen? To the presentation?” he asked. “Just as my friend?” He shook his head. “No, that’s dumb. It’d be boring for you. Forget it.”

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