“I want a taco.”
It was 11 pm on a warm summer night in So Cal, and I was laying backwards on my bed with my head hanging over the edge. Todd was lying on the floor with his hands behind his head, mouthing the words to Island in the Sun by Weezer, which was playing from my laptop in the background.
“Seriously? You’re still on about that?”
“I can’t help it! I’m Mexican, dammit. Tacos run through my veins. My blood is made of salsa and my heart’s probably a giant piece of carne asada.”
“…..you know sometimes you worry me. But I love you” Todd added with a wide grin.
“Love you too, T-dawg” I couldn’t help but smile back.
“Fo’ shizzle my nizzle. How ‘bout you come down here and give yo pimp some sugar?”
I laughed. “Mmm-mh. I don’t work for free, baby. Go get me some tacos and I’ll show you some real love. ”
He was quiet for a second, and then looked up at me with deep emerald green eyes from under his shaggy dark brown hair. Along with his strong, lean arms and tan skin, he was gorgeous. “Wanna come?”
I flipped right-side up and raised an eyebrow at him. “This late?”
“Taco Bell’s open 24 hours. And it’s not far, just a couple of blocks.”
Wow, he was serious…….And it was adorable. I jumped off the bed and landed on the floor next to him with a quiet thud, like a ninja. He clapped.
“Beautiful. Perfect 10.”
“Thank you,” I tried to look cute. “Alright, let’s roll.”
We walked down the dark street holding hands, and then out of boredom started playing The Random Game. After about 20 minutes, we slowed down a bit.
“I’m tired. Are we theeeree yet?”
He leaned over and kissed my hair. “Yea, just a couple more blocks.”
“Awww seriously?! You said it wasn’t far” I pouted.
“Do you still want those delicious, amazing, tacos that run through your veins?”
“Then keep walking.”
“I don’t wanna.” I stuck my tongue out at him.
“Then you leave me no choice.” He squatted down in front of me. “Get on.”
“Wooo!” I jumped onto his back and he continued walking casually down the deserted street as if I weighed nothing.
“I see it!” I yelled out 10 minutes later. The Taco Bell sign was glowing a few hundred yards away, and my stomach rumbled because I hadn’t eaten all day. Todd knew it too.
“My lady’s in trouble! Switching to hyper-drive” he said as he looked back at me and winked.
I wrapped my arms tighter around his neck as he ran all the way to the door of the restaurant, and when we got there we were both laughing like idiots.
“Shit, it’s drive-thru only. What are we gonna do know?”
“Psh, easy. We’re gonna use the drive-thru.”
“We don’t have a car!”
“I am getting you those tacos and you are going to eat them and love me forever, okay? Good. Let’s go.” He was already walking up to the drive-thru, and I just laughed and pecked his cheek as he chuckled and called into the order box.
A static-y voice answered on the other side. “Welcome to Taco Bell, may I take your order?” I tried to hold back my giggling as he talked.
“Yeah, can I have like, 10 tacos? I don’t even care what they are, surprise me. That’s it”
“Um okay…drive up to the window please.”
We kept laughing and then Todd shushed me as he walked up to the window, with me still on his back. The employee opened the window and was looked down at us with the most perfect look of confusion on his face.
“Um, $9.46 please.”
I handed him a $10 and said “Keep the change.” The drive-thru guy just took the money and gave us the bag of food, and with a funny look said, “Um, you two have a nice night.”
“Thanks.” I shot him my best smile and lightly kicked Todd’s side with my foot. “Onwards, trusty steed!”
He ran on, both of us laughing like idiots, heading towards a small park nearby. We collapsed on the soft grass, panting.
“Oh my god, did you see his face?! That was PRICELESS.” I laughed, imagining it.
“I know! Best drive-thru ever.” Todd was still chuckling as he said, “Come on, let’s eat those tacos before they get cold.”
We ate in silence for a while, and then laid side by side on our backs, with Todd’s arm around me as we looked up at the dark night sky. There was no moon tonight, so there were hundreds of stars out, all shining brightly.
“They’re so beautiful,” I said, trying to find constellations.
Todd was quiet for a second, then turned and stared straight into my brown eyes, brushing some of my long dark hair out of my face.
With a deep, sincere voice, he said, “They might be beautiful, but those stars are nothing compared to you, Jade. Nothing.”
I blushed, but I remained hypnotized by those piercing, green eyes. I could only think of one thing to say.
“I love you.”
He gave me the biggest, most perfect smile I’d ever seen.
“I love you too.”
And we kissed. I didn’t know how much time had passed or even remember where I was, but I didn’t care. All I could feel was Todd’s strong, gentle hands around me and his breath on my lips as we slowly melted into each other.
The crickets chirped, the wind whistled through the trees, and the night was absolutely perfect.
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