A Single Day

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: September 18, 2018

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Submitted: September 18, 2018

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Claire watched people as they enjoyed their morning at the park.

Some sat in benches drinking coffee or people watching like her. Others enjoyed their exercise. There were a few couples hand in hand. Lastly you had the people paying more attention to their cell phones as they made their way to wherever they needed to go.

She checked her watch, it was almost eight. She sighed. Tomorrow at this time she would be meeting the man her parents were adament she marry for business and she had no say in the matter.

The decision had been made and already announced. Well it would be in another few minutes as her parents and her future husbands' had given an interview the day before for an important business magazine. Should be hitting the streets about now. Should have been earlier but there had been a delay, costly she was sure.

She had refused to go to said interview. Nowhere near anxious to meet the man that would be in her life. She had heard the same about him, he had no interest in showing up either.

Lost in her thoughts Eric sat down at the other end of the long bench. She glanced over and noticed the forlorn looking young man.

He was easy on the eyes and her heart skipped a beat. She rolled her eyes. Might as well forget about guys for the rest of her life.

His light brown hair looked mussed up, his brows furrowed. He must have felt her stare because he looked over at her. He had amazing aqua green eyes.

She felt her cheeks redden and she turned away.

"Good day to people watch." Eric mentioned casually. His voice was slightly deep and sultry.

"Mmhmm." She nodded and sighed once again. When would she get the chance to do this again? She would be preparing for her wedding soon enough and no extra time on her hands.

"You look as sad as I feel." He continued to talk. "You were probably taught not to talk to strangers, I get it. Would you mind if I just talk? I don't have anyone who will listen and it gets tough."

She turned her head slightly and gave a nod. He seemed nice enough and all he wanted was to get a load off his shoulders.

"Have you ever felt like your life was never yours to begin with? You were born and you should grow up to be your own person but you don't have that liberty. You think that once you turn 18 you can take it from your parents but even then it is still theirs to dictate. That they can choose who you need to be in life and how you should live said life. That's how I feel. How I have always felt."

She found herself talking when he paused. "I feel the same. Even though they have that reign over you, they still expect you make them feel proud yet you fall short every time. Their expectations are impossible because they are their own but you are forced to do them. It sounds confusing but I know exactly what you mean."

"I would like for once in my life to be able to make my own decision. I'll even ask for just one day. Just one day to do what I feel like doing, to feel and be me."

Her plump lips pulled up into a smile. "I've wished for the same thing for a long time. I think I'll never get that chance though."

He stared into her dark brown eyes for a moment before his lit up as he got an idea. "Let's do it."

"Do what?"

"Let's take a day from them. Today, let's do whatever we want, no regrets. We're never going to get this chance or rather we'll never take it. I think it's time we're spontaneous. What do you say? Will you be free for a single day with me? You can do it alone as well if you'd like." He smiled sheepishly. "Doesn't have to be with me."

She giggled. "If you are going to be daring then I should attempt to as well. Okay...let's do it. Let's be free for a single day."

He scooted closer to her and extended his hand. "We should introduce ourselves properly. We can use real names or fake ones, however you want."

She took his hand with hers. It felt warm in her grasp.

She wanted to keep the day free and thought that their names should include it as well. Their parents had chosen their names, why not choose their own for this day.

"I think fake names are a given. Our first independence from our parents."

He chuckled. "Alright."

"My name for today is Chastity."

He arched a brow.

"I know, sounds like a stripper but I know for a fact my mom would hate it."

"Alright, Chastity, my name will be Santiago. I think I'll go with something a little exotic."

"You definitely don't look like a Santiago but we'll go with it."

"So...what should we do first?"

Her stomach growled. "I haven't had breakfast yet. Perhaps that should be first?"

"Sure." His phone rang. "You know, we should also turn off our phones. I feel like Santiago and Chastity don't have any social lives because they like to be adventurous without technology."

"Old fashioned. I like it." She turned off her phone like he did and put it in her purse.

"Breakfast then...I say we eat something we were never allowed to this early."

Her eyes sparkled in mischief. "Ice cream?"

"Exactly. Ice cream shops are not open at this time but we can buy some in any corner store."

"Come on then. What are we waiting for?" She stood and he followed suit.

Eric got a better look at 'Chastity'. She was cute and down to earth, at least in his opinion. She was wearing blue jeans that hugged her delicate curves. A flowy blouse that showed of her shoulders and collar bone. Her skin was a warm color that didn't clash with her dark brown hair. Long lashes framed her large brown eyes. Usually he wouldn't find himself attracted to a normal girl like her but he found himself liking how simple she seemed. He wasn't the only one sizing up the other person.

Claire liked how 'Santiago' was almost a foot taller than her. He looked fit and elegant. He walked with purpose like he was someone important. Without his real name she couldn't guess who he could be. Not that she cared for this was a chance she was taking only for today. Perhaps she would never see him again. His aqua green eyes seemed to dance with mirth as if he knew she found him attractive. She hoped he liked what he saw as well, she had strong greek genes from her mother and hoped they weren't a turn off.

They found a corner store after crossing the street and headed inside.

She got cookie dough while he chose buttered pecan. They grabbed some plastic silverware from the condiment section and went to the counter.

"Allow me." He took out his wallet.

"Should I consider this a date then?" She smiled.

He grinned in turn. "If that's what you would like. I was being a gentleman."

"Fine, then I'll pay for lunch. Deal?"

"Deal and I'll pay for dinner."

"Wow, we're going for a real full day then."

"Definitely. We should make the most of our only day of freedom."

They headed out after he paid and walked around as they ate.

"Question. What occupation do you wish to have? That is if you are currently following your parents' dream instead of your own." He asked.

She thought for a moment. "I would like to have been a teacher. I think I would have enjoyed teaching kindergarteners. What about you?"

"I wanted to be a cop."

"Bet your parents said it was too dangerous."

"Right on the money. So instead I went into college and studied business."

"Profitable profession I bet."

"It is. Can't complain when I have a penthouse. It gets lonely though."

"No girlfriend?"

He smiled sadly. "Not yet."

"Maybe we shouldn't talk too much of our personal things." She noticed his gentle transformation.

He glanced her way from the corner of his eyes. "You're not getting out of it so easily. You asked and now it's my turn. After this last question, no more personal ones."

"Alright. That's fair."

"A boyfriend or anything of the like?"

"Nope."

"Okay. What should we do after we're done with our ice cream?"

She popped her lips. "I don't know...I want to do something fun."

"Me too."

"Coney Island."

"What?"

"That's where we should go. I've always wanted to but never found the time. Have you gone?"

"No, never thought I would be interested but lets do it."

"How shall we get there? It's not close."

"That's why there's uber and lyft." He got his phone out and remembered that they would not be using technology.

She laughed. "I guess it's taxi time." She hailed one down and they got in. She told the driver where they wanted to go and leaned back in the seat. "Let me guess, never been in one."

"Thought taxis were overrated by now. I welcome the experience though."

"Good. Since we won't talk about personal matters what should we talk about?"

"I think that our favorite things are safe. What's your favorite color?"

"Green. You?"

"Blue."

"Hmm."

"What?"

"Nothing, just...blue. Hmm."

The corner of his mouth lifted up. Is there something wrong with blue?"

"Nothing. It's basic but okay."

He chuckled. "Says that person that likes green."

"Green is out there. It's not regular."

"Sure."

"Whatever. Favorite food?"

"Chinese takeout."

"I agree with you on that one. Nothing beats that good old chinese takeout. The place where I always order delivery from knows me by order."

"That's...nice." He snorted. "Not crazy cat lady creepy at all."

She scoffed and punched him playfully on the arm. "For your information I have never had a cat."

"Well if this makes you feel better, I don't order from the same place every night. I vary it that way they won't remember me as the single guy that has no one to cook for him."

"Aww, that's sad." She pouted.

He rolled his eyes knowing she was kidding. "Do you dance?"

"I go to the occasional night club but really just to drink. Dancing, have two left feet."

"I can slow dance but that's about it."

"Favorite all time movie?"

"Damn, that's a hard one." He clicked his tongue. "I will say all the batman movies, old ones."

"Batman is my favorite superhero. George Clooney was so hot."

"Of course that one would be your favorite out of them." He grinned.

"He's sexy, even now. Favorite dessert?"

"Come on now, is there even a favorite. I love anything sweet."

"Okay, you're right, we shouldn't choose a favorite when it's all good."

They continued to chat about their favorite things, laughing and enjoying their time. Claire found it fun to find someone she had so much in common with. 'Santiago' was so easy to talk to. She wished that today wasn't the only day she would get to spend time with him.

They finally made it to Coney Island. He suggested they ride the roller coaster first so they wouldn't barf anything they decided to eat.

Like her he wanted to be at the very front.

She screamed in joy and he held her hand during the ride. They were laughing as they got off.

"A drawing of the happy couple?" A cartoon artist asked them.

"Sure, why not." Eric pulled 'Chastity' to sit with him on the stools. Her cheeks burned red as he put his arm around her waist and pulled her close.

They posed for the artist as he quickly drew them. He gave them the drawing in no time.

Eric gave him a twenty and they walked off admiring the picture. "Looks exactly like us."

Claire laughed. "Sure if we actually looked like that."

"I'm keeping this as a memory of today." He had nowhere to store it though.

"Here. I'll give it to you when we depart." She opened her large bag for him to put it in.

Next they got a couple of soft pretzels to enjoy. They stopped at little booths and played games. They were both having the time of their lives.

They snacked throughout the island. At last as the day got later they stopped at the ferris wheel. They had temporary tattoos and a couple of stuffed animals.

He chewed on some salt water taffy and gazed up at the large ride. "What do you think?"

"Last stop before we leave?"

He nodded.

They got in line and then on when it came to be time.

"I've enjoyed today." She turned slightly to him.

"I have too." His eyes were soft as they stared into her own. "Wish it could last forever."

"Me too."

They ended up stopping at the very top somehow finding themselves closer than when the ride had started.

He slowly pushed a loose strand of hair behind her ear. She tilted her head as his face got near. Closing her eyes their lips met.

The kiss was soft, gentle, a caress. It was over too soon as the ride started again.

He sat back. "Sorry. I couldn't help myself."

She was blushing. "It's okay. I probably would have kissed you if you hadn't."

In silence they finished the ride.

"Dinner?" She asked as they walked towards the exit.

He nodded.

They managed to find a taxi and this time he gave the address to a restaurant he knew. It was cozy and he could bet that she would love it. It was a small simple place.

He wasn't sure if it was awkward or if she was savoring the memory of their kiss like he was.

At the restaurant he opened the door for her and let her in first.

They were shown to a booth and given menus. After their drink orders they looked it over.

He suggested some entrees and she chose one to try.

She sipped her coke and set it down carefully.

"Chastity, if I made you uncomfortable, I'm sorry."

She smiled sadly. "You didn't make me uncomfortable. I'm just thinking. I enjoyed that kiss but...maybe it shouldn't have happened."

He understood. "I get it. It kind of makes this one day thing feel impossible now. I loved that kiss but you are right. There's something I should tell you."

"Alright. What is it?"

"I wasn't completely truthful in saying that I didn't have a girlfriend. I guess I do have one and I'm going to marry her."

She could see how sorry he was. "I understand. I too have someone I'm going to marry."

He sighed but not out of relief. He had only just met her a few hours ago yet he didn't like the idea of her sharing the rest of her life with someone else. Did she feel the same as him?

She tried to smile like she was fine with it but inside she felt like her heart was being ripped slowly open. This wonderful man who she just met was going to be marrying someone else. Probably someone as kind as him.

"I won't forget this day. You let me be me."

"I won't either. I'll hold it dearly in my heart. For once I was able to be the real me with someone that was also being themselves. I'll cherish it."

Their food arrived finishing their conversation.

They talked about the fun they had and other unimportant things.

At long last their day of freedom came to an end.

They stood outside under the light of streetlamps waiting for a taxi to show up for her. He would call a car to pick him up as soon as he turned on his phone.

"Guess this is goodbye." She looked up at him whistfully.

"It is. I hope life goes better for you from now on, 'Chastity'."

"I too hope that from now on you get that freedom you yearn for. Bye, 'Santiago'."

"Goodnight."

She hailed down the cab that was coming down the street. It stopped and she opened the door. With one last glance at the man behind her, she got in.

Eric watched it pull away and took out his phone. Too late he remembered that she kept the cartoon drawing that was made for them.

He smiled. Hoped that she would find it and keep it.

As soon as his phone was on there were calls from his parents and voicemails. Right, tomorrow was an important day.
 
 
 
Again Claire found herself people watching but this time it was her parents and her fiance's parents. They were talking about where best the wedding should take place and who should plan it.

She checked her watch. It was 8:15. Her fiance was a no show. Hopefully he would blow this whole thing and she would be free.

A smile grazed her face. Free like she had been the day before with 'Santiago'. Sadly there was a knock on the door indicating that her fiance had shown up at last.

"Sorry I'm late. I thought to take a walk in the park this morning."

Her heart beat erratically as she looked up and met aqua green eyes.

"Chastity." Eric stared at her in surprise.

"Santiago..." She stood up.

"Who are those people?" Her mother asked then waved her hand dismissively. "Who cares. Now Claire, this is Eric, your fiance. Isn't he handsome?"

Claire smiled. "Very much so."

His eyes warmed towards her. "I find my fiance beautiful. Actually I should do this properly." He closed the distance between him and Claire, getting down on one knee.

He took out a velvet box and opened it to show her the ring. He couldn't believe that in front of him was the woman he had met the day before. The one he fell in love with in a single day. He knew that because right now, in this moment, there was nothing more he wanted than for her to say yes to his following question.

"Will you marry me, Claire?"

Her eyes shined happily. She felt like yelling out in glee but composed herself. "Yes, I'll marry you...Eric."

He slipped the ring on her finger and stood. Taking her in his arms he kissed her.

They forgot their parents and where they were, simply relishing in the fact that they were the ones that were marrying each other.

They had been talking about each other the day before when they said that they would be marrying someone. Though it had felt sad before, now they were rejoicing. Their lives had changed.

To think a single day would now turn into a lifetime of being free with each other.


© Copyright 2018 Zefyr. All rights reserved.

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