"C-Cody!" I repeat, turning my back to theresturaunt and looking at him. I obviously look excited, because Cody smiles with his perfect white teeth.His green eyes sparlkle with excitement, too.I can't force a frown anymore, but I still... I don't know what to think about himanymore.Earlier, Ihated him, and right now, I feel likeI love him."You remembered?" I asked slowly. The melting pot is where he brought me. I remember, I told him this on Christmas. We were just talking, and he asked me where my favorite resturaunt was. I said the melting pot... And he still remembers that. When he promised to make tonight perfect, I didn't beleive him.
He smiles wider. "Yep." And slowly reaches his arm to mine and takes my hand again. I look up at him, notcompletely surprised. But I press my lips together in a smile. Why do you remember so much about me?
I look down at his hand around mine, and I lace my fingers with his. Tightly. Almost like if I let go, I'll die. I look up at him, feeling all shaky, and he notices and rubs his thumb over my knuckles.I've known him all this time fora jerk, but today he's never seemed nicer.His hand is warm in the surrounding cold, and I never want to let go. Ever
He squeezes my hand. "Let's go inside, Lex."
I squeeze his hand back and wish I didn't have to eventually let go. But I will. He leads me through the parking lot, and along with the footsteps, the only other noise is cars on the highway several blocks away.He opens the front door of the resturaunt for me, and then we reach the front desk. He talks to the lady about the reservation for a minute, and then she leads us, through the winding isles,to the back of the dimmed resturaunt. Couples watch us as we walk by, wondering how we got in and they barely did. Wondering how two seventeen-year-olds can pay for this. I wonder that, too.
The waitress gives us a little maroon-coloredvacant booth in the back corner of the resturaunt, sits us down, and hands us black leather menus. She smilesabig pink--lipped smileat Cody, but turns to me and gives me a smug pinkfrown. I frown and glare at her as she walks away, and I secretly hope she trips over those ten-inch heels she's squeezed on.
Cody looks over at me, wondering what's up. "What's wrong?"
"Nothing." I say nervously, looking at the menu right away so I can avoid eye contact. I hate this nervous feeling I have right now. It's kind of like feeling sick, but also excited. Like that sick you get when you're in second grade and you go on your first real field trip. Excitedly unexcited sick. And I look back to him, and realize that it's either going to be a very long or very short night.
About thirty minutes later, we've ordered and the food arrives from a waitor named Bill. He balances all the fondu stuff amazingly with one hand on a very large tray, then deals the food to us like cards. Then, like a bad guy from a twenties' movie, he twiddles his odd mustache. "Enjoi" He says, bowing. I laugh, because they usually don't do this. In fact, they never do this. We just have an awesome waitor.
The waitor crawls away funnily with the tray and leaves us to dine. I look over at all the fondu and smile. This is my favoritr food in the world. Cody and I immediately pick up all the fondu stuff and get started. There's melted cheese, bread squares, grapes, pumpernickle, crackers, etc. Then, there's melted chocolate, a whole fruit tray, and brownies and all sorts of other sweets.
I see Cody slowly pick up his prong, stab a brownie, dip it in the chocolate, and hold it up to me, gesturing. "Open up." He purrs like a pervert, looking a bit too amused to me.
Of course that's the first thing he does. "There is no way I'm doing that." I growl, glaring at him. Now I feel like stabbing him with the prong in my hand. I really should.
"Come on Lex, it's Valentine's day." He pleads.
I lower my voice a little. "You damn pervert! No!" I whisper-scream
He just keeps smiling. "Come on." He pokes me a couple times with the brownie.
I roll my eyes and sigh. "Will you stop if I do?" I ask.
"Maybe..." He says, looking like he's considering something.
I give him another long sigh, considering that this will mess up my perfect lipstick (litterally, Katy took forever on this.) and cave. A little part of my pride died at that moment, and I opened my mouth, rolling my eyes again. He immediately lifted the brownie back to my mouth. I bite it off the prod, then glared at him, blushing. Damnit.
He immediately looks satisfied. He beams "You're so cute!"
I'm fucking going to sock you in the face. Iscream in my mind.I blush extra hard, turning redder than the lipstick that plasters my face, and I ignore him .I stab a peice of pumpernickle bread with my fondu fork unhappily, then dip it in the cheese and eat it, avoiding his eye contact. This is proposturous. Pervert.
He just smiles and goes on to eating, occasionally making small talk.
After we've plowed throught the real food (being the cheese and not desserts) we move on the what we really wanted. The big pot of chocolate. He had already fed me a peice, but we both knew we wanted to skip the whole cheese fondu pot and eat the chocolate.
Cody keeps trying to force feed me food, and I keep blushing (actually wanting him to) and telling him to shut up. He knows I don't mean it though. He obviously knows a lot about me. I wish I knew more about him...
"So...you keep asking about me. Tell me about you." I say, eating a chocolate covered strawberry.
"Huh?" He asks, looking away from his brownie.
"What do you like? What music? What're your favorite things?What do you see in girls? Favorite food?Dog person? Cat person? favorite color?Anything." I ask.
He looks at me like I'm a martian. "Where'd that come from?" He asks.
I shrug. "Just wondering."
He thinks for a moment. "Uhhh... Okay. My favorite kind of music is indy, I guess. I like minus the bear, bad books, foster the people. I like football, obviously." He emphasises that he's on the football team. "Uh... I really like girls with freckles." He gestures to me. I blush and frown, but he continues. "Uh.. My favorite food is seafood. I'm a cat person...I think. And my favorite color i red." He smiles. "There."
"Oh." I say, thinking about all of it. Is that why Katy made me wear so much red? I think.
I takethe lastbrownie and study it for a second. I start thinking, and start hating myself all over again. Cody's been eating a lot of these... I dip it in the chocolate, and I realise that today I'm just murdering my pride. I press my lips together.
"Cody..." I say slowly, feeling like I'm tryingto lose all faith in myself.
He looks up at me. "Yeah?"
I look at the table cloth and sigh, my face turning redder. I lift up the prong with the brownie on it, and clench my other fist. The room seems to get hotter. the collar on this stupid turtle-neck seems to get tighter. He looks down at me. "Lex?"
I push it closer to him, hiding my face in shame. "Take it..." I say, then glance up at him. He smiles. He's obviously enjoying this very much because I've noticed that when he's really happy, the corners of his mouth curve in a weird way. It's kind of cute.
He bites the brownie off the end of it and lifts my chin up. "You need to stop being so shy, Lex." He says, letting go of the tong with his teeth.
"I'm not shy." I state bluntly.
"Then why do you avoid eye contact evey time you want to smile at someone?" He asks. "Why do you say exactly the opposite of what you mean?"
I frown, not wanting to have an argument.My eyes shiftdownto my lap. "I don't know."
"Hey, I'm not saying I don't like it. It's cute" He offers me a smile again.
"just like it's cute when you're weird and try to feed me." I say.
"I wan't kidding." He says.
"Neither was I..."
Another hour or so passes of long conversations, some really awkward, some fluent and genuine. We laugh, I glare, he perverts his way through the minutes. And, before I knew it, time was up. I looked around, and it was closing time. People were being urged and pushed out, even shoo'd, and we were probably next. I look at Cody, he looks at me, and we immediately start to rummage through our wallets to leave the tip. We had already payed the main bill, with tip included, but our waitor was pretty bitchin'.
We both set a ten on the table and stand up, not wanting to be reminded about closing time from grumpy waitresses who had no date for Valentine's day. I know the feeling. We make our way to the front doors, andhe holds the door for me again. I smell his Hollister cologne, and wonder how he could be a prep.
We walk out into the parking lot and I hear sirens off in the distance. I smell the resturaunt from afar. The street-lamps are dimmed a little. And the air is chillier now that it is closer to the reaping hour. I sigh tiredly and look at Cody. "I know it's a little rude to ask, but how could you afford all that?" I ask.
He looks down and over to me. "Oh... I just saved up for the past two months. Ya know, saving tips, my job, asking gramma when mom just won't give any more cash." He smiles and shrugs.
"Why'd you go through all that trouble?" I ask, looking over at him.
"I think you know why." He says, pulling out his key chain and pressing the little 'unlock' button on the plastic handle. The car beeped, and we both climbed in, trying to escape the hellish cold. When I look in the reir view mirror, I see my cheeks are red. But I don't know weather from the cold or just blushing again. I hate blushing. So much.
He starts the engine and we start pulling out. His car humms quietly, and I feel the seat warm. We swerve around a few corners and cars, then exit the parking lot. I watch the resyraunt dissapear in my perrifferal vision and smile a little. It wasn't all that bad.
Soon, the truck stops on my little street, and my apartment is just yards away. He pulls his key out and unbuckles, and is obviously going to walk me to the door. And ask if I had a good time. And creep on me until I say yes. That's how it always goesm anyways.
I hop out nervously, and I grab my purse from the passenger seat. I sling the one long arm around me and sigh. Then, I watch my breath float in the air until it dissapears out of the view of the street lights. The street light is bright in the pitch black neighborhood. Most people are asleep by now, so there's no need for lights. In fact, my house is the only one with lights on the whole street. Marcy and Tony's shadows are visible in the windows. they are probably just waiting up for me.
Cody takes myhand but Ikind of have to drag himup the walkway from his truck. I drag him all the way up the sidewalk and the front speps to my front door, and he acts like a two year old. We reach the door and there's an awkward silence.
I reach for the door "Well...Goodnight, Cody." I offer a red smile.
He grabs my wrist quickly, but gently. "Wait wait wait! Did you forget the deal?" He asks.
I frown at him. "Yes."
"We agreed that if you had a bad time, I'd leave you alone forever. But, if you had a good time, we'd finally make it official." He smiles in a hopefull way. he's actually so cute. I think, looking at his hopefull green eyes.
"Oh..." I say, nervously stuffing my hands in my pockets. Why am I so nervous about this? I think. I know my answer. Then, I stop and think for a minute. I know my answer. I finally know what I want? I think about that over and over again, because I never know what I want. But... I do now?
"So?" He asks. "Your answer is..?" He asks, looking at me with wide green eyes.
I look at the ground and cross my arms. Yet I'm still nervous. "..." I hesitatea moment, then grumble. "Yes..."
"What?" He asks.
"Yes." I say much louder. I blusg at theground.After the long silence that follows, I glance up at him nervously, curious of his reaction.
He just smiles. Like a little kid, almost. He then lets out a big excited laugh, not like a funny ha-ha laugh, but an 'awesome' kind of laugh, and grabs me by the shoulders. He leans in, not so slowly, and gives me a short, excited kiss.
My face is even redder than my sweater now, I swear, and I look at him nervously. What is my deal? I'm not good at reacting to things, especially like this. That's one of the reasons I always pushed him away. I slowly back away in nervousness. "Well... I guess I'll see youlater then..?" I reach eagerly for the door knob.
"wait-" He tries to say something, but I shut the door on him. I lean against the other side if the door, nervously, my heart pounding in my chest. why did I do that? i think. why did I slam the door in his face? I slowly think for a sceond, then realise that I don't want to keep slamming the door in his face. I want to be out there with him. All this time, I've been acting like this. I turn around, and look out the peepphole. I see him rub the back of his neck unhappily and sigh.
Is this how he feels all the time? I think, watching him look at his shoes.
I creak the door open again, getting tired of how I'm acting. "Cody?" Iask quietly.
He turns around. "Yeah?"
I slowly come out of my shell and crawl out again. "I...Sorry." Istill avoid his eyes and I wrap my arms around him and put my head into his chest, and feel a little scared to make a wrong move. That's what I am. Scared. He slowly catches on and wraps his arms around me. He sets his chin on my head and I feel him smile.