“You can easily pick her out in any crowd,”
She tightly closed her eyes and pressed her lips together as the voice behind her spoke.
“Maybe it’s the way she wears her wild hair. Or perhaps it’s the color she chooses to torment people with,”
She composed herself and slowly turned. Her poker face could have won her some award.
“I torment people?”
“A few I imagine. You did not know this?”
Feigning surprise she said, “Certainly not. Quick, point them out so that I apologize.”
And much to her horror she saw him look around, grab a guest from the crowd and bring him to her.
“Pardon me, Sir but this shouldn’t take much of your time. Kindly, would you look at my friend here and let us know if her red dress disturbs you? Is it the kind that you look at and go about your business as if nothing happened or would you let your eyes linger even just for a few seco_”
“Definitely linger,” said the man quickly. And I wouldn’t be looking at just the dress. Her_”
“THAT will be all, Sir. Thank you,” he interrupted while pushing the man away. Smirking he turned back to her, “See? I wasn’t lying.”
“Maybe not about that but you did lie about something. We are not friends.”
“Oh, right! How foolish of me to think that just because we’ve met about four times at these things and talked a bit every time that we automatically become friends? I mean, friends don’t give friends the number to a sanitarium, do they?”
She tried to stifle a giggle.
“Of course I called! How dare you?”
“You said I couldn’t help giving you mine since I liked you. I proved you wrong.”
He smiled, “Yeah, whatever. You like me and there’s no denying it.”
Suddenly a photographer appeared and smiled at them.
“Picture for the lovely couple?”
“Oh. No no. We’re not_”
“Certainly,” he said while quickly grabbing her by the hand and pulling her to him.
She felt his hand on her lower back and tried to fight away the urge to wiggle out of its hold. If she did he would know she was uncomfortable. And that was stupid since people take pictures like this all the time. But this was different, she heard her thoughts say. See, when the hand of the man you have been obsessing over rests on you like that you feel things you shouldn’t be feeling in places too soon to feel them. Pictures form in your mind that have you questioning if you have ever set foot in a church. This was why she wanted to get away but couldn’t because he would know.
The photographer beamed at them, “Nice. Yes, a bit of a smile from the lady. That’s it. Turn your face a little to face him. Beautiful!”
He took the last shot and looked at the screen on his camera.
“I have to admit, these are my best shots tonight. There’s nothing quite like young love,” and he was gone before she could correct him.
* * *
“Why do you come to these things anyway?”
They were walking away from the party and the noise, her heels held in her hands and his coat over her shoulders.
“I mean, you never talk to anyone, except me of course and you don’t even look like it’s fun talking to me. So why do you?”
I wasn’t going to come after the first but then I met you and now I look forward to each one. That’s what she wanted to say. But instead she said, “Well, my friend told me to come, that I’d like it. I don’t want her thinking she was wrong.”
“Remind me to make you my friend if you’re that considerate.”
You could make me more if you wanna, went her thoughts. What was wrong with her?! She needed to control herself.
“If you could just give me the right number I might know where to start.”
“Oh, look. You asked in a nice, non-cocky way.”
“Did it work?”
She smiled at him, “It did.”
“Great. Now I can finally ask you out,”
It took a while to register and when it did she quickly turned to him.”
He clicked his tongue, “Don’t look at me like you don’t know I like you like that, Missy!”
“Oh,” Was all she could manage to say.
“I want to wine and dine you and call you ‘M’ Lady’ and later on maybe kiss you as I drop you home… that sort of thing.”
“Uh oh. Not a mutual feeling?” he asked looking a bit petrified.
“Are you kidding? I was wondering when you’d stop calling me ‘Little Red’ and just… wine and dine me. And kiss me, of course.”
“How about now? The kissing, I mean. Not like I can wine and dine you out here.”
“You can actually, but yes, let’s save that for several dates later.”
His face broke into a mischievous grin.
“My, my, Little Red. You are quite the eager one.” And then slowly he reached out for her hand and pulled her to him. She looked up at his beautiful face and had to stop from pinching herself. It was finally happening.
“Red suits you, Little Red. But I’m afraid I’m gonna enjoy ruining the one on your lips.”