They both stared at the notepad like someone had taken a dump on the table. Finally, Frederica put it away and tried to change the subject.
“So I think Magh likes Tommy.”
“You finally noticed, huh?” Nila said. “She’s been making doe eyes at him for weeks. Or whatever her planet’s equivalent of deer is.”
“Apparently I totally missed that,” Frederica said. “Do you think he feels the same way?”
“Oh, I’m sure he does,” Nila said. “I mean, have you seen how cute she is? If I were more into girls, I’d probably have made a move by now, myself. I’m not sure what’s taking them so long.”
“I’m pretty sure she was trying to ask for my blessing this morning,” Frederica said.
“And did you give it?”
“Well, I told her Tommy and I are just friends,” Frederica said. “But I didn’t, like, come right out and say it’s okay for her to date him. I’m honestly not sure if it is.”
“Fred,” Nila said. “You’re out there trying to hook up with bird boy and you won’t even let your best friend have a little fun of his own? It’s not like you to be so selfish. Unless you’re angling for a threesome, in which case I’ll allow it.”
“No, that’s—no,” Frederica stammered. “It’s just… frustrating to see Magh succeeding where I’ve failed. And I know I should be happy for her but… it’s hard, is all.”
Nila was quiet for a moment.
“I get that,” she said. “But none of it’s her fault.”
“Yeah,” Frederica said. “I’ll… try to be better.”
“I know you have it in you,” Nila said. “Anyway, enough of this serious shit. Tell me more about your new boyfriend.”
“What do you want to know?”
Frederica stood in front of the Student Union Building, staring up at the third floor, where the VCU Review held its offices. She glanced at her notepad, skimming it for anything that had actual journalistic value beyond pure voyeurism.