Running away is Scott’s go-to plan when he finds himself in a place where he doesn’t want to be. While his parents are in Iran taking care of his ill grandfather, Scott decides the internship his dad set up for him in a Philly research lab is not for him, and quits after the first week. He jumps on a bus to Washington D.C, to track down a college professor who is an authority on grit, a trait Scott decides he needs to develop. He makes friends during his D.C. adventure: Fiona, a cruciverbalist, or creator of crossword puzzles, whose daring and spunk impress the heck out of Scott, or Saaket, as Fiona call him by his Arabic name. He also meets Trent, a gay bartender and friend of Fiona’s who is looking to break into the political arena , and takes Saaket under his wing. A debut teen novel by Arvin Ahmadi, Down and Across is a humorous and honest look at friendship, core values and navigating the road to adulthood.