Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day

She lifted the chilled glass to her lips, the candlelight dancing along the etched design, her tongue aching for the taste. Her lips parted as her vision finally focused on the table next to her. Instead of tasting the drink, she stifled a gasp.

Rob unfolded his napkin, shook it out and looked at her. “Something wrong?”

“Everything’s perfect,” she lied. “We, um, we need to talk about The List.”

That had Rob's attention. His eyes danced with amusement. “The List.” He laughed. “Perfect Valentine’s Day conversation, babe.” He reached across the table and took her hand. “I hate to break it to you tonight, but Angelina wants me. She dumped Brad last week. I know. I read about it on Perez Hilton, so it must be true.”

She shifted in her chair, not quite sure how to tell him that one of the top five on her list now sat just a few feet from her. And the arrangement, even made in jest, was forgiveness for any and all disgustingly delicious things one could do with List People should the opportunity arise, which neither believed would ever happen. Until tonight.

Rob stood and circled around her, resting his hands on her shoulders. “Happy Valentine’s Day, sweetheart,” he whispered. “Enjoy your gift.”

Before she could breathe, the man at the next table stood, turned and walked to her table. She saw his face for the first time. “Oh God . . . ”

He sat across from her and smiled. “Not quite, but almost.”

--Brenda Bradshaw