One Date

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Abandoned

The things that can happen, when you move back to your old small town, and run into an old friend.

One Date

By Danni Lee

 

She moved back to town after her divorce and was at her favorite place in town.  The old coffee shop was still there, and she loved the old place.  She could smell the fresh ground coffee from her seat outside, mingled with the sweet smell of last night’s rain.  Thirteen years she was married and now she felt like a failure.  Breathe in the sweet air she thought and took in a deep breath.

“Susan, is that you?”  She jumped and almost spilled her coffee. The man walked toward her, and she couldn’t remember his name, but she knew the smile.  “Are you visiting your mother?”  He asked and sat down across from her.

“I just moved back to town last weekend.”  She smiled at him and her mind raced, she knew him.  “I am so sorry, but I can’t remember your name.”

“Keven, remember, we dated before you meet your husband.”  He blushed and she noticed it.

“Well, I should have spent more time dating him I guess.”  She looked away.  She had failed in the marriage and it was hard to talk about.

“It didn’t last then?”  He looked down at his hands.  “Mine didn’t either.”  He looked down the street.  “I moved back a year ago.”  He sighed.

‘Do you want a cup of coffee?  I have a job interview in an hour and would love the company.”  She smiled at him.  It was ok, she didn’t fail, it just didn’t work out.

“Well, I’m on my way to work, but I would love to meet you here at noon and we could have coffee and they still make the best tuna melts here.”  He smiled at her.

“That sounds great.  I’ll meet you here at noon.”  She watched him get up and tuck his chair under the table.

“I’ll see ya then.”  He still blushed slightly.

She smiled and watched him walk away.  He was tall, with dark brown hair and soft brown eyes.  His shoulders were broad, and he was still thin.  She tried to remember anything about him.  She met her husband in high school, so maybe she could find out more by looking through her old high school yearbooks.  It would have to wait until she was finished with her interview.  She looked at her watch and stood up.  It was almost time.

 

Interviews were always scary and this one was no different, but she felt good about it when she left the realtor's office.  The small town wasn’t much but there were always homes to sell.  She walked home and looked at her watch for the fourth time.  She wanted to get to those books and try to remember who Keven was.  She moved back in with her mother and still hadn’t unpacked everything.  Thirteen years gave you time to collect a lot of clutter.  Most of it she left behind her, but she wouldn’t leave the books.  Books were not something that she could abandon.  Those worlds between the pages were important to her and she knew them well.  She opened box after box looking for her high school photo albums, but she couldn’t find them.  She looked at her watch again, if she didn’t leave now, she would be late.

 

He was waiting for her, she glanced at her watch again and it was ten minutes to twelve.  “Your early.”  She smiled at him.

“Yes, I am.”  He grinned.  “I also took the rest of the day off.”  He stood and pulled out her chair.

“Such a gentleman.”  She sat down and he tucked her into the table.

“You like mayo on your tuna melt, if I remember correctly and you like the mocha late, right?”  He smiled so slightly, and his eyes lit up.

“You remember?”  It was her turn to blush.

“I never forgot you.”  He smiled.  “I’ll be right back.”  He walked into the coffee shop.  Now she felt even more guilty for not remembering him

The spring weather was wonderful, the sun warm on her skin but a cool soft breeze kept her from being too warm.  She took in another deep breath.  Why couldn’t she remember him?

He came out carrying a tray with their order on it and set it on the table.  He served them both and sat across from her.  “You still don’t remember me, do you?”  He chuckled.  “It’s ok to admit it.  I was very shy back then.”  He started to eat.

She watched him.  “Oh, my God, I remember.  You took me to a school dance once.”  She liked him back then, but he was so shy, that she didn’t know where they stood in a relationship.

“Yes, I did, and then you started to date Mark, and I couldn’t compete with him.”  He wiped his mouth with a napkin and took a sip of his coffee.  “What happened between you two?”  He asked.

“It just wasn’t right.  I think he loved the tv more than me.  That, and the beer, after a while it got really bad. I just couldn’t do it anymore.”  She took a sip of her coffee.  “What about you?  What happened?”  She started to eat her sandwich.

“In all honesty, she wasn’t you.  Now, I know what you’re going to say, or maybe what you are thinking, but I watched you for a long time in school, and I loved you so much back then.”  He laughed.  “I know it’s crazy, but I never stopped loving you, and she didn’t handle it well, so she left me.”  They ate for a while in silence.

“Why didn’t you say anything back then?”  She asked.

“Well, that’s what got me over being shy.  I found out, that you don’t get the girl of your dreams, if you don’t tell her, she is the girl of your dreams.”  They finished their food and their coffee.  He cleaned up the plates and the cups and took them back inside.  She watched him.  How could he have loved her all this time?  How was that possible?  He came back out and pulled out her chair.  “How do you feel about a walk?”  He asked.

“I would love to go for a walk.”  He offered her his arm and she giggled but took it.

“Let’s go this way.”  He led her down the sidewalk past the park.

“Do they still have live bands on Friday night?”  She asked.

“Yes, they do.”  He smiled down at her. 

They turned the corner, and she couldn’t believe what she saw.  “Oh, would you look at that?”  She said pointing at the house on the opposite corner.  “That’s the old Stanly house.  I always loved that place.”  She stopped to look at it.  “Someone has really been taking care of it.”  The old Victorian home was well manicured.  The stained-glass windows were new, but whoever restored them kept the colors bright and original.

“You should see the inside.”  He said to her.

“I always wondered what it looked like on the inside.”  She turned to face him.  “Do you know who owns it?”

“Let’s go look at it.”  He guided her across the streets and up to the front door.  He pulled a set of keys out of his pocket and unlocked the door.  “It still needs a lot of work and it could use a woman’s touch, but I think it’s looking pretty good.”  He opened the front door and guided her inside.  “What do you think?”

It was beautiful, the old stairway was polished wood, and the rail was right for the time period. Polished wood floors glowed in the sunlight, and the walls were painted with care, thick floorboards ran along the bottom of all the walls and the crown molding was so well done you couldn’t see where the wall stopped, and the ceiling started.  She walked down the hall from the entryway and looked at the kitchen.  Copper-pressed plates covered the ceiling and the large French doors to the back patio brought in the sunlight.

“Keven, this place is beautiful.”  She stood in the kitchen and looked around.  “Who owns it?”  She asked.

“I bought it.”  He smiled at her.  “I knew how much you love this old place, and it was always my favorite too.  When I came back, I couldn’t help it, and bought it before the town took a bulldozer it.”  He laughed.  “I always hoped you would come back to town, and when I saw you this morning, I knew this was my only chance.  I’ve been working on it for a year, but I have something I really want to show you.”  He turned and walked out of the kitchen and back down the hall.  The door in the entryway was closed, but now he opened it for her and stepped aside to let her in.

She stood on the threshold and couldn’t believe her eyes.  It was a library, overstuffed chairs and comfortable couches were scattered around the large room. Bookshelves went to the ceiling and most of them had books on them.  She walked through the room and looked at the books.  “I didn’t know.  I didn’t know you felt this way.”  She turned and looked at him.

“I don’t expect anything from you.  I just hope we can date a little and get to know each other better.”  He stepped into the room with her.  “I want a chance to show you what I have become.”

“Tell me you didn’t do all of this for me?”  She asked.

“I did it for me, but I always hoped, that if you ever came back to stay, that you would see what kind of person I am now and that I would get a chance to have more than one date with you.”

“I’d love to date you, but you need to know that I’m not who I used to be.”  She looked at him.  “I’m not the same as I was back then.”

“Then let me have a chance to get to know who you are now.”  He smiled at her.  “Who knows, I might just fall in love with you all over again.”

“You know what I do remember?”  She asked and stepped up to him.  “I remember you didn’t kiss me good night.”

“No, I didn’t.  I was too shy.”  He reached up and touched her cheek.  “Can I kiss you now, or do I have to wait until I walk you home?”

“I would love a kiss now, if that’s all right?” She tipped her head up to him.  His hand went around to the back of her head and he stepped forward, tipping her off balance a little, she needed to put her arms around him to stay on her feet.  He brushed his lips against hers and his breath was warm on her cheek.  She opened her mouth to him, just the smallest bit, and breathed in.  His tongue touched her lips and her tongue reached for his.  He tasted of coffee as their tongues danced.


Submitted: February 18, 2021

© Copyright 2021 Danni Lee. All rights reserved.

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Comments

Alex S. Foley

Great story. I loved it.

Sat, February 20th, 2021 11:45am

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