“Do you see her?” Heidi asked, startling me.
Goodness, did I forget Heidi was there or something? I had, which meant I needed to get a grip. Dude was hot, but come on. I was here for Heidi.
I dragged my gaze from the guy and then nodded. None of these people, except for the blond guy and the one who’d just sat down, looked old enough to be anywhere near this club. Then again, neither did we. “Is that her?”
“Yes. That’s Emery.” She squeezed my arm. “What do you think?”
“She’s really pretty.” I glanced over at Heidi. “Are you going to go over and talk to her?”
“I don’t know. I think I’m going to let her come to me.”
Heidi nodded as she sucked her bottom lip between her teeth. “The last three times, I approached her. I think I’m going to let her find her way to me this time. Like, see if it’s just a one-sided interest or not, you know?”
My brows rose as I stared at my friend. Heidi was not shy or patient, nor did she get nervous. That could only mean one thing. I clasped my hands together. “You’re really into her, aren’t you?”
“I like her,” Heidi said after a moment. A small grin appeared. “I just want to make sure she likes me.” She lifted a shoulder. “We’ve talked a little and danced, but she hasn’t asked for my number or asked to meet up outside of here.”
“Have you asked for hers?”
“Hoping she’ll make that move.” Heidi exhaled loudly. “I’m being stupid. I should just ask for hers and get it over with.”
“You’re not being stupid. I would be doing the same thing, but I think you should at least ask for her number tonight. That should be your goal.”
“True,” she replied, forehead creasing. “But that stage . . .”
“Stop with the stage.” I laughed.
The truth was, I wasn’t the best person to be dispensing relationship advice. I’d only ever been in one somewhat serious relationship, and Brandon and I had lasted a whopping three months, ending right before summer.
I broke up with him over text.
I was that person.
As awful as it was to admit to even myself, I’d only gone out with Brandon because all my friends had been coupling off and, well, peer pressure was a bitch and I wanted to feel whatever it was they kept going on and on about every time they posted online or in their snaps. I wanted to be . . . I wanted to know what that felt like. I wanted to fall in love.
And all I did was fall into boredom.
I drew in a shallow breath as my gaze found its way back to the couch, the one with the guy with the messy bronze hair. He looked about my age. Maybe a year or two older. Instinct told me that anything to do with him would not be boring. “Who . . . who is that?”
Heidi seemed to know who I was talking about without my pointing him out. “His name is Luc.”
“No last name?”
She laughed as she spun me around, away from them. “Never heard his last name. He’s just Luc, but you see the blond guy who appears as friendly as a rabid porcupine?”
“The one looking at his phone?” I smiled, because that felt like a good description of the guy.
She started walking around the dance floor, pulling me with her. “He’s a Luxen.”
“Oh.” I resisted the urge to look over my shoulder to see if he was wearing a metal band around his wrist. I hadn’t noticed it when I saw the phone in his hands.
The band was known as a Disabler, a form of technology that neutralized the Luxen’s otherworldly talents, which were derived by what the Luxen called the Source. The Source. Still sounded completely made-up, but it was real and it was deadly dangerous. If they attempted to go all Luxen on someone, the Disabler stopped them by releasing shocks equivalent to being hit by a Taser. While that wasn’t pleasant for anyone, it was particularly painful and debilitating to the Luxen.
Not to mention, all public spaces were designed to immediately quell any incidents that may arise with the Luxen. The shiny reddish-black metal above every door and the specks in the ceilings of most establishments were some kind of aerosol weapons that had no effect on humans.
Whatever mist it dispensed supposedly caused extreme pain. I’d never seen it happen—thankfully—but my mom had. She’d told me it was one of the worst things she’d ever witnessed.
I doubted Foretoken had such a weapon installed.
Because I was nosy, I asked, “Is Luc a Luxen?”
“Probably. Never been close enough to him to tell for sure, but I’m guessing he is.” Their eye color was usually a dead giveaway, as was the Disabler. All registered Luxen were required to wear them.