Romance Funny Creative Nonfiction

She didn’t want to do this. She didn’t want to be here. She hated blind dates; they were so uncertain. None of the parties involved knew what they were going to get, they just hoped for the best. Well, she wasn’t a big believer of hope. Ava Sommers was a practical woman. She never relied on hope, never has, never will. Which was why this date was giving her the jitters. She wasn’t worried about the looks, God knew she had her fair share of beautiful assholes, she was more concerned about the attitude. She could handle that too, sure, but she would rather prefer not to. She had had a very stressful day, and all she wanted to do was to just sit back, relax and have a pleasant conversation with a nice guy. Which was half the reason she had accepted to go on this date. Her best friend, Shay, had been nagging her for months to go on a date. She had introduced countless guys to her, where she met them; it still baffled her, but she had always turned them all down. But lately, the loneliness that had always been lurking in one corner of her mind had been resurfacing a lot. So, she had accepted this one, logically thinking it might ease her of her loneliness and at the same time get Shay off her back for the next couple months. She squared her shoulders, smoothed her hands down the figure-fitting gown Shay had picked for her. One of the perks of having a fashion designer for a best friend; killer dresses. She stepped into the dimly lit restaurant, scanned the room, and her eyes somehow landed on her date. She walked towards him, already assessing him. Not bad in the looks department, Ava thought, as his face came into full focus. Dark rich hair, cut short, black eyes, and a very sinful mouth. The said mouth tipped up in a smile, -as sinful as the eyes- Ava looked into his eyes. She felt a shiver go up her spine. His eyes heated, as if he felt it too. She sat down in the seat her date pulled out for her. Let’s see where this one takes us, shall we? *** So, this was a feisty one, Luke thought. His lips tipped up in a smile. He had not expected her. Hayley had set him up on numerous blind dates, the latest a little more mundane than the last. Not that they were boring, it was that his mind wasn’t always on them; it was always somewhere else. He hadn’t wanted to come on this one, but Hayley had made a tempting offer to let him be for the next month. So, he had agreed to go. And now, looking at Ava Sommers across the table, the restaurant light flittering across her features, making them look even more stunning than when she had walked in, he was starting to wonder if this might be different. He was hoping it would be different. He had seen the heat in her eyes when he had smiled, and then a polite smile had covered it up. But not fast enough. She had felt the electricity crackle between them just as he had. He was curious, curious as to why she would hide what she felt. And he loved a challenge, and Ava Sommers was definitely one. “You….” “You…” They both laughed, and then Luke said, “I was just going to say how beautiful you look and how you’re doing that dress a favor”, he paused, his black eyes shining, “but please, ladies first”. He inclined his hand towards her, the corner of his lips lifting. He saw the laughter in her eyes before he heard it, “Thank you. And you don’t look too bad yourself”, she replied, her eyes sparkling. He didn’t know what made it so, but he suddenly felt very comfortable with her. So, he said, “Look, I know we both know what we do, our age”, at her raised eyebrow, he added, “or at least the approximate. My point is, we already know the basic stuff, so we can just skip that right now”, he said, looking directly at her. She stared at him for a while, “Fine, but if we are not getting to know each other, what do we talk about?”, she replied. He smiled, “Love”, *** Ava looked at the gorgeous man across from her, Love? He wants to talk about Love?

“Out of all the things we could talk about, anything really, you want to talk about love?” His broad shoulders lifted in a shrug, “Yes” “Why?”, she asked “Why not?”, he countered She looked at him, into his eyes. Those were always the catch, weren’t they? ‘Fine, let’s talk about love” His black eyes darkened even more with interest. He leaned back in his chair, his posture all relaxed, “So, do you believe in true love?”, he asked. Ava too, leaned back in her chair, she was suddenly very comfortable, “Well, seeing as I’m with you, on a blind date my best friend set up for me, isn’t the answer obvious?”, she replied. He smiled, “You would think, wouldn’t you? But I’ve found out that believing there is true love does not mean you believe there is for you” “Oh, so you’ve been on plenty of these, have you?”, Ava asked, smiling. He laughed, the sound very rich, “No, no, that is not what that meant”. At Ava’s encouraging nod, he added, “I know a friend who thinks that way. I have tried to convince her otherwise, to no avail.” “Oh,”, Ava said “Yeah”, he replied, an emotion passing through his face. It was gone before Ava could figure out what it was. “Well, I and your friend have something in common. I don’t believe in true love for myself either, but only because I don’t believe in true love altogether,” Ava said. One eyebrow shot up, “Why?”, Luke asked. Ava tilted her head to the side, “Oh, I don’t know. I guess the idea that there is a love that, no matter what happens, will always come back to you, just doesn’t sound right to me,” she took a sip of water, “I believe there is love, but you have to work hard at it. I believe if you don’t work at it, it can go as easily as it came. Nothing lasts forever, you know?” Luke looked at her, curiosity brimming in his eyes, “So you don’t believe in true love?”, he asked, Ava shook her head no. “Well, I do”, he said. A faraway look came into his eyes as he said that. Ava wondered where he went. *** Luke drank some water from his cup and looked at the woman sitting across from him. He smiled, she reminded him of Hayley. She was just as strong-willed. “And because I do, I also believe true lovers are destined to meet,” he said. He saw her eyebrows shoot up. “What?! That is even more preposterous than the idea of true love! Destined to meet? More like coincidence!”, she replied, energy bursting in her eyes. “I don’t believe meetings like that are coincidences, I believe that if two people are destined to meet, no matter where they go, or what they do, they will surely meet,” Luke said. “Oh, come on, please, you can’t tell me you actually believe that? In this century?”, she said “No matter the century, one’s belief remains, luv”, Luke said, amusement in his eyes at her vigor. She heaved a breath, “Okay, I guess that’s true, but come on, people meet all the time, what’s destined about that?!”, she paused and then her eyes lit up, “Okay, take me and you, for instance, okay? Just on the off chance that we fall in love, would you say we were destined to meet? My best friend and your…”, she trailed off, “Boss,” he supplied. She blinked, obviously surprised at that. He smiled. But then she recovered, “…. your boss set us up on this date. This is not destined, it’s planned!”, she concluded. Luke decided to be a good sport and go with her logic, “Okay, following your logic; on the off chance that we fall in love, Hayley, my boss,” he added, when she looked blank, “could have set me up with anybody else, literally, and your sister could have set you up with anybody else too. And we could have come on totally different dates, but yet somehow, we find ourselves sitting across from each other,” he said, his eyes locked into hers. She blinked, cleared her throat, “Well, you have quite the imagination”, she said He smiled, “What can I say, I have always been a romantic,” he replied. “Anyway, all I’m saying is, any meeting, planned or otherwise, could be destined. You can’t know for sure, none of us can,” he paused, for effect, “just as none of us can be sure of who our true love is. But what we can be sure of is the power of love. It exists. We see it every day; in new mothers, fathers, families, best friends, lovers. That exists. Many people choose to fight it, I choose to embrace it. You wanna know why? Cause it’s not going anywhere.”

*** Ava felt sure she was floating. That was the only explanation for the feeling that was going through her at the moment. As she stared into Luke’s eyes, she couldn’t seem to look away. She felt like she was flying. She had heard falling in love was like, well, falling, but she felt like she was flying, lost in his eyes. That means she wasn’t falling in love! Of course, she wasn’t falling in love. What was wrong with her?! You can’t just fall in love with someone on the first date! Was she daft?! But, man, was he absolutely hot right now! She blinked, “Okay, I guess seeing your view on love has been, well, romantic, so far, I’m going to go ahead and assume you think there is only one person for every person on earth,” she said, making it a question. He tilted his head to the side, the restaurant light making a play on his features, making him look like a god. Now she was starting to notice things like that! She was gone, Ava thought. One thing was sure, this night wouldn’t be the last she saw of Luke Andrews. He replied, “Well, I wouldn’t say ONE, a select few have been known to be lucky to have more than one. But, yes, I do believe there is a one for everyone.” Of course you do, Ava thought. “You?”, he asked. Ava tore her eyes from his long enough to answer, “Well, like I said earlier, I believe love is worked hard at to achieve. So, if you can work hard at it, you can work hard at it with anyone. So, no I don’t believe there is a one, I believe there is a ONE you work hard with”, and I wouldn’t mind if that person was you, Ava thought, looking across the table at the man she was starting to fall for in just the one hour their date had been long for. *** “So, that was a night”, Luke said, as they stepped out of the restaurant. It was 9:15, and Luke couldn’t remember when he had enjoyed a woman’s company as much as he did Ava’s. They disagreed on everything they talked about, and she was passionate about her stand. Perhaps that was what made him like her, her passion, a trait that was present in the one he loved. *** Ava looked up at her date, “Yeah, it was. I really enjoyed myself”, she said. She waited, waited for him to ask her on another date. Now, she wasn’t the type of woman to wait for a man, but she was starting to realize Luke was a different one. She waited, and then he replied, “Ava, you are amazing, really. I enjoyed this night more than any I had had in months, but….”, Ava heard nothing after that. She had seen it the moment he started talking, she had seen the regret. She had seen it coming,” …. but I keep seeing her. All the while we talked, I kept thinking of Hayley. I just couldn’t stop”, he gripped both her hands in his, the familiar shiver ran up her spine, “you know how I said I believe there was one person for everyone. Hayley is mine”. He leaned further down, trying for eye contact, “I am really sorry, Ava. Really, I am” He was sorry? What was she supposed to do with that? She had found a guy she hadn’t even known she was looking for. And he already had the ONE. What was she to do with his apology now? Everything clicked into place; Hayley, his boss. Hayley, the friend who didn’t believe in love. Hayley, the reason he believed there was the ONE.

Hayley. Well, that was one hell of an introduction to someone she had never met.

August 27, 2020 18:24

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