I pulled out my cell phone after my little reflective moment...
What u up 2 2nyt?
Up for dinz at 7?
Waiting for approximately....oh...um..5 seconds, I decided I'd head home.
As I was walking out of the designated outdoor smoking section, head down trying to read over previous text messages, I kicked something hard, presumably metal? With my shin...
“Ahh! f*ck! Watch where your going!” I grumbled bending down to rub my shin. I looked up... Oh crap. “Oh. Hey, Micah. I was just about to text you.” I had forgotten.
He sat there smirking at me, hands on rims, “Ahah. Yeah, and I just came here to ram my footplate into a random girl.”
What a smart-ass. But I guess that's what I liked about him? He pressed my buttons. In a good way...and not so good way.
“Ha ha. No, really, whatcha doing here?” I glared a little at him. Hey, give me a break! Old habits die hard.
“I was actually coming to get coffee, and just...ya know, check out the shops?” He winked at me.
...Doubtful Mister, doubtful.
Instead I said, “Oh okay. So you just happened to be, say twenty blocks? From your part of town, to just come get coffee and go shopping?” I raised my evil eyebrow at him, but couldn't hold onto it for long. Damn you smirky Mc Smirkerson!! haha!
“Yep. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.” He nodded as he folded his arms across his broad chest.
I was somehow distracted with the semi-tight white tee pulling across those broad shoulders, and tight pecs. Those arms, when folded, seemed to just POP! Out...so well defined, so firm and tight...
“Ah Skye?!” He looked up at me inquisitively.
Oh sh*t! Snapping out of my muscle-gazing-trance, “Oh crap! Um, what did you say?” I felt so stupid, I could feel that warm annoying blush spread across my cheeks. Knowing there was NOTHING I could do about it...
He just cheesed at me, “Uh-huh. Was there something on my top?” He dimple-popped at me. I knew he knew what I was staring at at that instance.
“Uh, yeah. I thought I saw a fly buzzing around your armpits.” I half-smiled as I attempted to shake the previous thoughts and images out of my head.
He laughed a little then continued, “Okaaayy, sure. Whatever you say Missy.” There was that stupid wink again! “I was just saying, do you mind if I join you?” He pointed with his head toward where I had been sitting.
“Uh, no. Of course not. I had just finished though.” I admitted.
“Well, are you up for round two?” He looked hopeful.
“Sure, why not. An Iced white Chocolate Mocha—hold the cream.” I told him before I made my way back to the table I was just sitting at, pausing only to watch him push up the ramp inside.
A few minutes later he made his way back, I had just moved a chair out of the way to make a space when he rolled right into it.
“Thanks.” He half-smiled at me.
“For what?” I smiled back.
“For making this easy.” he said cryptically.
“Um, okay?” I said unsure of what we were talking about, “No probs.”
Sighing he leant forward on the table till he was so close I thought he was going to kiss me, instead he said, just above a whisper, “ I mean, thanks for moving the chair out of the way, for me not having to ask. You don't know how many times I've had to ask.” He rolled his eyes before finishing, “and...well...sh*t. No f*ck it. I'll say it—you better not laugh!” He held his index finger in my face as he gave me a stern look.
I couldn't help but let a giggle escape. I tried to keep it in, honest!
“Oh f*ck, I'm not going to say it now.” He leaned back in his chair, and folded his arms across his chest.
I grabbed his arms, trying to uncross them—sh*t, he was strong! “Oh don't be like that Micah! I was just kidding around. I promise I will be serious now! Cross my heart.” I made the hand gestures that accompany that childish promise.
“Nope. You ruined the moment. It's gone now.” he was sooo stubborn.
“Pleeaasseee...” I pleaded, doe-eyed and hands together as if in prayer.
“Fine.” the sun broke across his face as he grinned, “I was just going to say, thanks for being you.”
Frowning, “What the heck does that mean?”
“Oh Geez Skye! It's not a put-down! I mean that you're you!?! Ya know? You don't get all weirded out by me, or hold anything against me, you're just you!?!” He threw up his hands as he looked to the heavens, as if to ask: Why God, why!?!
“Ohhh...I get it.” I said as though I had just come through a stoner-haze. Laughing I said, “Yeah, I am pretty awesome, aren't I?”
Micah looked at me, then ruffled my hair, before saying, “I totally take it back now.”
“Too late boy! It's Miinnneeee!!!” Laughing my best evil laugh, “I have already put it in my pocket to save for a rainy day.”
Just then a pretty brunette brought our coffees over, “Iced white choc mocha and a tall latte?” She said lazily, as if this job bored her to sleep.
“Yep. Thanks.” Micah winked at the girl, before handing over five dollars.
“No probs Sir. Thanks.” She pocketed the notes, grinning now at Micah. And with a wink and a toss of her chocolate mane she departed.
After she left I hissed at him, “What was that for?!?”
Sighing he said, “It's easier if I get the coffees brought over, than having to wait there while everyone looks at me. And then, have to attempt to bring hot coffee all the way back to the table.”
“Oh.” I said, feeling like an idiot, but not entirely satisfied with the answer.
Awkward pause inserted here.
I had just decided to break the ice with some lame conversational starter, when he took the words right out of my mouth.
“So. I guess your wondering how I knew you'd be here?”
“Actually yeah. It is kinda stalkery don'tcha think?” I laughed.
“Yeah, I guess it is.” He laughed back. “I actually ran into Alice, at her work, and asked her if she knew where you'd be.” He looked at me as though he wanted an okay?
“Okay...” I began. “So we won't go into the Alice, at her work thing. We'll start with the why did you need to know where I was?” I surmised.
“Yeah, I thought you might be pissed at that.” He said seriously. Drawing imaginary circles on the table he almost whispered, “I-I...I'm confused. I...I really don't want this to be it, ya know? Man, I sound stupid.” Looking at me, he said a little louder, “ I don't want to lose you.”
It seemed like he had more to say, so I waited.
Sitting up properly now, “ I mean, I know we're not exactly 'dating' and sh*t, but I just—look, I haven't clicked with a girl this much since Stacey, and I–sh*t! Why is this so hard?” He looked at me, then away.
I laughed softly, “Because it's usually the girl spouting all this emotional stuff. But your doing good, keep going!!” I encouraged a tad smarmily.
His gaze told me it was not quite appreciated, but there was a hint of tease to it. “Fine, Oh Skye! Your like sooo hot! I just want to know if you'll, like, be my, like, girlfriend? And we can, like, you know have sleepovers and, like, braid each others hair?”
“Ahh...I see. You speak Sarca-nese too!?!” I cracked up.
“Yeah, yeah. Calm down Skye. I picked up a thing or two having a sister, and of course, living with Stacey.” He added quickly.
“Oh yeah, that's right.” I looked down.
I had almost forgotten about Stacey and the whole over-the-top drama. It had helped that I hadn't seen Micah, because that surely would have reminded me...
“So what say you, my Lady!?” His best english accent at work.
“Well, my fair Sir. I say it be fine and dandy. Though I believe the saying goes, Let's take it nice and slow.” I added fairly seriously.
“Then me thinks that shall be done. If you will have me, then dinner would be a delight!”
Rolling my eyes, and groaning, I proceeded to show him the hand, literally. I planted my palm in his face and pushed a wee bit. Paybacks for the hair tousling.
“Hey! I was serious.”
“I know! And that's the worst part!” I groaned. “Yeah, dinner sounds good.” I conceded.
Dinner was good, in an awkward 'first-date' kind of way.
I met him at his favourite restaurant—late as usual. But to be fair, I did warn him...
“Um, Hi! Micah Matthews table?” I asked shyly to the maitre'd.
Everything was soo fancy. Too fancy for a tomboy like me!? I didn't want to speak too loud in case I said something wrong, or made an ass out of myself. This was definitely...uncomfortable.
Smiling widely she said in a thick Spanish accent, “Ah yes. Right this way.”
I followed her, darting around tables like I was taking my drivers test again. If you can make it through without knocking over a cone, you win. As we started getting closer to the kitchen I started wondering whether Micah really was here, or maybe she was planning to kill me out the back...
We stopped outside a set of double doors. Magnificent Mahogany wooden doors. She opened one and ushered me in.
The room looked like one of those private party rooms you see at McDonalds—only a hundred times fancier.
It had dim lighting, thanks to a chic chandelier, elegant sconces on the walls, and candles on the table. The only table in the room.
The rest of the room was tasteful, modern minimalism, yet decadent. The walls a charcoal and muted grey thick pinstripe, and two huge antique-looking gilted mirrors framed the walls. The table was rectangular, with the standard thick white tablecloth. Beautiful porcelain dinnerwear, retro glasswear, and heavy, stylish, stainless steel cutlery adorned the table. The table looked full even though we hadn't even ordered anything yet.
At that moment Micah looked up and saw me. A smile lit his face brighter than all the lights in the room. I hesitantly smiled back.
He was on the phone as I was approaching, speaking in a quiet, but firm manner. (Whoever it was must be quite important!?) He held up his finger at me as if to say, just a sec!
The maitre'd that'd been hovering during this exchange, smiled at me and pulled out the only chair at the table.
“Thanks.” I whispered warmly as I sat down, noting that the table could probably fit six people intimately, but today was only seating two...
And with that, she disappeared.
Micah started to wrap up the conversation— I wasn't trying to eavesdrop, I promise! It's just that there wasn't exactly a lot to distract me in this room. Honest.
“Okay, yes that's fine. I think meeting this Friday sounds like a good idea. We can hammer out the details before we sign anything.” he listened intently, before adding, “Yes. That's great. Set it up with Sandy. I'm actually in the middle of a meeting right now, so I'll get back to you on Monday. Okay? Bye.” and with that he put down his cell phone, to beam at me. “So you made it!”
“Yes. Only fifteen minutes late.” I looked at my cell phone's time to be certain. “Not bad, I have to say!” I grinned at him.
“Sheesh! Well, I'm glad you don't work for me!” He chuckled with a grin.
“Thanks a lot Micah.” I retorted sarcastically as I poured a glass of sparkling spring water (oh so fancy!) “So, tell me, what is it that you actually do?!?”
I had realised I had never bothered to ask. Part of me was worried he didn't do anything. The other part worried it was something I wouldn't understand...which is a lot of jobs! Haha!
“well...” He took a sip of water before proceeding. “I do a lot of things.”
I looked at him sceptically. Certain it can't be anything good...or legit.
“Don't look at me like that!” He laughed, “It's not anything dodgy.”
“Okay. If your sure...” I was letting him off the hook. I pretty much knew I didn't want to know at this point. “So tell me. What do you like about this place? It's super fancy!?!” I crinkled my nose in sort of distaste...
“Well,” He said leaning back in his chair. “ I think it's fancy too. That's why I think it's a great first date place—first impressions are important, or so I hear.” He winked at me.
I groaned and rolled my eyes. Which was now becoming standard reaction when conversing with Micah.
“No seriously. I think it's got a great atmosphere, friendly accomodating staff, it's stylish, and it's accessible—oh, and the food is out of this world—yes, it's pricey, but you pay for what you get.”
“I guess...” I trailed off.
I have this thing with...well rich people. Well, mostly just people who don't spend their money wisely, and/or are selfish.
I mean, there is a huge portion of the world out there who are starving, or close to starving, need medical cures, medicines, and operations. There are people who don't have a roof over their head, people being ravaged by war...the list goes on and on...
One of my main gripes is the fact you can't take anything with you when you die, and being human isn't it more important to care about each other? about relationships/friendships? Isn't helping each other more important than material gain?!?!
I know, I know, I'm just an idealistic hippy, but whatever! that's my point of view. (Plus I feel uncomfortable with people who act like they're better than everyone else. I mean who saids they are? Besides themselves and their lackeys!? Haha!)
At that moment I noticed that a waitress had come in quietly and now stood next to our table discreetly. It was kind of freaky!?
“Is there anything I can get for you?” She said uber politely.
Micah looked at me, “ Would you like a drink?”
“Uh, yeah. Sure.” I stammered like a fool.
He looked at me quizzically, “...and what drink would that be?” He laughed.
“Oh sh*t—I mean, shoot. Um.” Perusing the extensive drinks list, I have to admit I was looking for the cheapest thing on that fancy menu, “I'll have a...um...water. I mean, nothing. I'm fine with my water.Thanks.”
Yeah, I'm a weirdo.
“Skye, you don't have to worry. It's on me.” Micah and the waitress seemed to exchange confused looks.
“Okay, I'll jut have an orange juice.” I relented a little.
“Are you sure? There's this great vintage wine from France, in the cellar, that I thought you'd like?” He tempted me.
“No.” I shook my head firmly. “Juice is fine. Thanks.” I handed back my drinks menu to the waitress.
Micah leant over and whispered something in her ear quietly, before she left the room.
“What was that?” I demanded suspiciously.
“I was just asking if she could bring me something special.” He half-smiled.
I guess this wasn't going to plan for him. But it's not my fault I'm no good at first dates. At least not ones in fancy schmancy restaurants...
“So. What is it that you do, besides dog-walking?” He dimple-smirked at me.
“Well, I am a jack of all trades really.” I smiled widely. “I currently work as a p.a to a resources manager in a company I don't really have any idea what they do?!” I laughed. “And on the side I do dog-walking, the odd waitressing job, once in a blue moon I might actually do extra-work for a soap or sitcom, and lastly I have a few paintings dislpayed in a couple of places to try and boost a flailing income—though I should probably give up on that idea. I haven't sold one in nearly two years! Oh, and I'm also trying to be a photographer on the side—hence Stacey's wedding.”
“Wow.” He sat back and folded his arms, “Wow. I am impressed. I thought I multi-tasked like there was no tomorrow.”
“Well, yeah, that's nothing! I've probably had more jobs than people have had breakfasts in my lifetime.” I giggled.
“Why do you put yourself through so many changes?”
“I like the diversity.” I took another sip of water. “I like collecting skills and experiences. I get bored very easily and it helps to keep the mind fresh and inspired. Life should be inspiring!” I surmised.
“I like that. I like your point of view.” he smiled somberly.
“Whatsup Micah?!” I said a tad frustrated.
A first date should be exciting, and nerve-racking (at least it was so far on my end) He seemed to be all calm?or melancholy and sh*t?
“Do you not want to be on this date with me?” I demanded. (Yes, I demand a lot)
“What are you talking about? I asked you here, didn't I?” He retorted back. Sighing he continued. “I just thought you'd like this restaurant a little more, that's all.”
“Oh. Yeah, I'm not exactly a 'fancy lady'. I'm more your, hey lets go to a basketball game then eat some chilli fries at the local fastfood outlet. The fanciest I get is going to a three star restaurant...” I admitted.
“Oh.” He seemed pensive.
Maybe, there was more that we didn't know. I mean, initial attraction can only get you so far... I should have asked Stacey about Micah more indepth. Or not, I mean, isn't that the exciting part? Getting to know someone from scratch?
“I like those things too.” He said softly. “I guess I was just trying to impress you. Which I should know by now isn't really your thing.” He chuckled softly.
“Well, I don't hate it...” I admitted, hoping to soften the blow.
“Ahah.” He took a sip of his water.
Things went a little more smoothly after that. I found out the standard fare. Parents divorced, he's the baby of the family, he likes a lot of the same things (apart from fancy restaurants of course!) and he loves dogs (D'uh!) he wants to travel more, work less, music is a passion, how he met Stacey, and Dave (separately of course) Blah blah woof woof!
After an awesome 5-star version of Spanakopita, and a mouthwatering Chilli, lime Prawn salad, topped off with a heavenly white chocolate tofu mousse-cake with these cool caramelised honey and nut fancy lattice looking thing? I was stuffed!
We also talked over our previous run-ins with each other. Both explaining what we were thinking. It was good. Clearing up all the sh*t miscommunication we'd had.
What got a little awkward was...he asked me back to his place.
I stood up, to put my coat on. “um...sure. I mean, okay.”
Frowing, “You can say no if you don't want to Skye. I'm not trying to force you or anything.” He pushed back from the table to put his jacket on too.
“No, I want to.” I paused a second to really think about it. It was a BIG decision. “Yeah, of course I want to.” I smiled.
Sighing in relief (?), he admitted, “I thought I'd rushed you or something. Hey, it's not like I'm just trying to get in your pants or something!”
I joined in laughing, “I believe you, this one time! If I hadn't witnessed you getting rejected by me time and time again, I'd probably think otherwise!”
Okay, it's not really a joking matter. Rejection hurts. A lot. But because we had talked about where we were both coming from (I had discussed the Ex and the recent sort-of ex, Josh) he was pretty okay with it.
He started wheeling over to my side of the table, “Did I tell you that you look beautiful tonight!?” He winked.
“Only about twenty times. But, Thank you! A girl never gets tired of hearing it!” I smirked back.
“Annnddd...” He waited.
“And what?” I played along.
“And how do I look!?” He grumbled a little bit pouty.
“Oh, Yeah. Um, you look okay? I think you might need a haircut. And I'm not too keen on those shoes.” I laughed at him as he tried to smack my ass. Jumping just out of reach. “No, I mean, you look good. Hot...oh baby, noone needs to light a fire today because you are smok'in!! Oh, can I touch you? My hands are really cold.” I said in mock seriousness.
“Ha ha.” He said flatly, before half-smiling at me, “You know it's nice sometimes for the man to get a compliment, ya know?! I really thought about what to wear tonight. Thought really hard.” He crossed his arms and started stroking his chin with a thoughtful expression on his face, he continued the charade, “ Now what would Skye like? Hm. I know I can't just turn up in any old thing!”
I playfully whacked him in the arm. I had to laugh though...
We started heading for those Magnificent Mahogany double-doors, when he paused at the wall.
“Watch this.” He had a cheeky glint in his eye, then proceeded to move a heavy velvet curtain to the side...the doors started opening on there own!
“OMG! That is magic!! Where?” I ran over and had a look.
There was a small switch, which was disguised as a lightswitch. Pretty coolio, I had to admit...
We made our way past all the diners, and then as we passed the Maitre'd I started to worry. Micah, had done a little nod, and a smile to her...and that was it.
Were we doing a runner!?!????
I really didn't want to be banned from anywhere (even though I would NEVER come here on my own, or could even afford the prices) I just didn't want to be a fugitive or some sh*t!?
I paused just outside. “Um. Micah?”
He stopped and swivelled around to face me, “Yeah?”
“Um, we didn't pay.” I felt stupid having to remind him. I knew I could afford my part (I just wouldn't be able to pay the rent for a few weeks, or get groceries), but I definately could not afford to pay the WHOLE bill...yes, he did get that fancy French wine...and yes, I did have some of it. sh*t.
Chuckling a little, “Oh, don't worry Skye. It's been taken care of. Come on.” and he started to take off again.
I took a few steps, then looked back at the restaurant doors. “Are you sure? I didn't see you leave once?”
He stopped and turned to me, “It's okay. Really. It's sorted.” He seemed a little angry?
“Look, I'm not trying to piss you off. But I'm not too keen on doing a runner, so to speak.” I added impatiently.
“Fine.” He wheeled closer to me, and looked me in the eye. “You want to know the truth?”
Wow, that was bold and in my face? I thought. I had to admit, the way he was looking at me made me a tad bit scared. Instead I whispered, “Yes.”
“Fine.” He took a deep breath, “I own the restaurant.” He looked away.
“Um. What?” I said confused. “That restaurant?!?”
“The restaurant we were just in?”
“The fancy one, with the food we just ate?”
“The one with the magic button?!” I was incredulous.
“For goodness sake. YES Skye!” He threw up his arms into the sky. “That restaurant, I own it. The one we just ate at. Is that all you have to say!?!”
“Yes.” I was quiet.
I followed him to his car in silence. – Just to clarify, he was not speaking as well.
I waited for the door to be unlocked, then finished my cigarette while he transferred.
I mean, so what if he's got money? I thought to myself. It doesn't change who he is. Does it?
I didn't know what I thought anymore.
I can understand that people would be really confused at the way I think. I mean, it's not usual. Who cares what people earn, people are just people, right? But as I said before, I'm uncomfortable. It's not just what I said, it goes deeper than that. My family history has been riddled with ups and downs financially, and as much as the ups were materialisticly great, they had been some of the worst times of my life. I had always had the high hopes of meeting normal people. I mean, people who are real. Who haven't had anything handed to them on a silver platter. People who care about others, more than themselves, and what they can get out of everything...I'm overreacting. I concluded.
He probably worked hard to get to where he was...
“So...” he said as we pulled away from the curb, “anything you want to get off your chest?”
“Nope.” I shook my head as I continued to gaze out the window.
“You sure?” He looked over at me sceptically, “I mean, you really sure?”
I turned to look at him seriously, “Yep. I'm sure.” tight smile ensued.
“I mean, I'm just saying, if I were you I'd be curious. Maybe want to know how much money I earn...or where I got it from...”
I turned to give him The Look, but noticed a hint of tease in his eyes, “Actually, no. I'd rather not know Micah. But you seem to want to get it off your chest. So go ahead.” I waited.
Sighing deeply, he finally said, “I'm only just saying this because it seems you have an issue with money, or at least people with money.”
“Yeah, it wasn't exactly a secret.” I smiled the other half of the smile I had started earlier.
“Yeah. I got it.” He smirked. “I just thought it best be clear. I thought you might have known, and....possibly, I mean a small possibility, that you might be dating me for the...er, um...money-side of things.” He laughed awkwardly at me.
“Are you freak'n serious!?” Boy, my voice bounced nicely around the car...
“sh*t Skye!” He corrected the wheel after the little swerve my outburst had caused. “Calm down. Sheesh! I just had to say it. It wouldn't be the first time it's happened to me, okay?”
He sounded frustrated, and I had to admit I felt the same. But for different reasons.
“You gotta admit, it could be true, Skye?”
I frowned at him in disbelief. “No, I can't believe that.”
And I didn't. He was a really hot guy, who had a great, if not sometimes annoying, personality. He was positive, and always on the go. I don't know....yeah, I know the wheelchair thing would put people off. But they were just idiots if they couldn't see past that.
He gave me a look I couldn't quite figure out, “Whatever Skye.” he started paying intense attention to the road. “Think about it Skye. I'm in a wheelchair, and I'm loaded. It's not the first time that cliché has happened. Think about that old dude that Anna Nicole married?”
“Well, your not exactly about to roll over and die...are you?” I added a little worried.
He laughed a hard chuckle, “No, as far as I know I'm not. But think about it, seriously. Don't try and be all pc, and the chair doesn't matter, and you'll see where I'm coming from.”
I went silent. I was totally there...I got it.
“Yeah, but you don't have to worry about me.” I said softly. “I don't want anything from you.”
“Yeah, I think I know that now.” he let out a breath he must have been holding. “I just figured, since we were trying to start off on the right foot, so to speak. All honest and sh*t.” He ran a frustrated hand through his hair.
twenty minutes later we pulled up to a modern apartment building. Micah pressed some hidden button under the sun-visor, and the huge gates started cranking open.
“You still sweet to come up?” He looked a little nervous.
“Yeah.” I hid a gulp.
I mean, it's not like we hadn't spent the night before—though nothing happened, apparantly. It's just that I was mega SOBER!? (Especially after the car ride home...)
Micah pulled into an underground carpark, and parked the car. I nervously started tugging on the door, to my embarrassment was still locked in.
“Oh sh*t. How do you get it open?” I mumbled as I looked around for the safety lock-thingee-me-bob. “Where the f*ck is it!?”
Micah looked like he was holding in a chuckle as he leant over and popped the lock, “There you go. “ As he straightened up he grabbed the steering wheel, looking at me with those oh-so-serious blue eyes, “Are you sure you don't want me to take you home?”
I looked at him incredulously, raising my evil eyebrow at him, “are you serious? You drag me out to a fancy restaurant, wine and dine me, almost yell at me in the car, and practically kidnap me across town. What do you think?”
I was holding in a giant giggle... “Hell yeah Boy! Drag your ass out of this car, and let's get our nightcap on.”
“Oh sh*t.Yes, Ma'am!” He grinned cheekily at me, as he saluted.
I whacked him in the arm, “Yeah, yeah. Hurry up old boy. Anna Nicole wants a bedtime story.”
To be continued....