I didn’t budge. “No,” I said through clenched teeth, in disbelief that he wasn’t sympathizing with me. “I told you, I’m not going in there.”
Eli pulled away and put his hands on his hips. “Maya Jacobs, grow up. We’ve braved five city blocks in the freezing cold. Let’s go.”
I shook my head again, and he left me in a huff, disappearing through the entrance.
My jaw dropped. I couldn’t believe he would ditch me like this when I was clearly freaking out. I yanked the braided strings of my winter hat down farther, hoping it would disguise me if I ran into Cameron. I took a deep breath and entered.
The gym was surprisingly inviting, with muted cool tones. Gyms freaked me out. Or maybe just the people who frequented them did. I always felt out of place, like everyone knew I had no idea what I was doing there. Today was no exception, but something about the place had an unusually calming effect. I scanned the reception area and the rooms I could see into. I released a sigh of relief that Cameron was nowhere in sight.
Eli was at the counter, getting details for the yoga class, when I joined him. He glanced back at me and took my hand in his. I followed him down the hall. We entered a spacious room with mirrored walls, light wood floors, and some new age soundscapes drifting over us from the surround sound. We grabbed mats and found two spaces. Eli strategically positioned himself next to another young guy, a blond slice of heaven who was chatting with him in no time. The only other spots open were in the very front. My anxiety immediately kicked in, but I couldn’t bail now.
I got situated and lay back on my mat, waiting for the class to start. Between being horizontal again and the music, I was nearly asleep again when the instructor spoke up, asking us to take a seated position. I rolled up, wishing I’d had an extra five minutes for a power nap.
The instructor introduced herself. Raina was a petite girl about my age, thin and toned with pixie cut brown hair. She pretzeled her legs into a comfortable lotus. I looked down at my crossed legs. No. That won’t be happening.
The rest of the class went better than expected. Raina had realistic expectations and gave us enough options so no one felt left out. I left the class both exhausted and rejuvenated. I waited for Eli to finish chatting with his new friend, and we walked out together. Still no sign of Cameron, but I pulled on my hat just in case.
“So that was good,” I said, my voice markedly peppier than it had been an hour ago.
Eli cocked his head. “See, aren’t you glad you came? You were being such a baby about seeing Cameron, I thought I was going to have drag you in there.”
I jumped back at the sound. Cameron emerged through an adjacent doorway. In front of us now, in a gym T-shirt and mesh shorts, he was impossible to ignore. I gave him an involuntary once over, swallowing hard.
“Hi,” I mumbled.
A broad smile crept over Eli’s face as he held out his hand. “I’m Eli, Maya’s roommate.”
“It’s a pleasure.” Cameron shook Eli’s hand. “You guys come to work out, or…?”
“Yoga,” I replied.
He cocked an eyebrow. “You always wear a hat to yoga?”
I frowned and pulled it off, my hair instantly going in every direction from the static. I nervously tried to tame it when Cameron continued.
“Let me give you guys a tour. I could even do a quick training session if you’re interested. I don’t have an appointment for another thirty minutes.”
“Awesome. I’ll leave you two to it. I think I see someone I know at the treadmills.” Eli winked at me and waved goodbye.
I followed his retreat with a glare, my zen waning at a rapid rate.
“So what’ll it be?” Cameron crossed his arms and leaned against the wall, his powerful legs on display. I thought he’d come back changed after boot camp, but this was a whole new level. I tore my gaze away and forced myself to meet his eyes.
“I don’t know. I’m not really up for a work out. I’m kind of wiped out.”
I rolled my eyes, not wanting to explain that I also happened to be epically hung over. “Listen, I did a lot of planks in there. She’s intense.”
“Oh, Raina?” He laughed a little and he shifted his gaze past me. “Speak of the devil.”
Raina bounded beside us, her eyes locked on Cameron. “Hey, Cam.” She lifted up on the toes of her sneakers and gave him a quick kiss on the cheek.
A pang of jealousy hit me, and then I remembered that he hadn’t exactly made it clear that he wasn’t seeing anyone. Even if he weren’t, someone as good-looking as Cameron wouldn’t stay on the market for long, as evidenced by Raina casually rubbing her sports-bra harnessed tit on his arm.