Written by elawisp

Fiction
5 Mar 2010


1st time (part 1)

She'd played this scenario over and over in her mind a million times. Mostly, she did this to convince herself there was absolutely no reason to be nervous and she'd thought she'd done just that; up to the point that it was actually happening and he would be arriving at baggage claim any second.

She exhaled deeply and slowly through her ruby red lips in a feeble attempt to calm her nerves but her hands betrayed her as they twisted the ring on her middle finger awkwardly over and over again. "This is so silly! Stop it," she thought to herself. "You know him even if you haven't met him. Relax. This is a cake walk." Who was she kidding anyway? Would he recognize her? What if he walks right by? Worse yet, what if he's disappointed. She felt the butterflies pelting her stomach once again; this time with gusto as she lowered her head in her hand.

"You look like you're about to meet your executioner," said a voice behind her. She turned to see an elderly woman observing her up and down. "Well, you do!" In spite of herself she chuckled and said, "No, quite the opposite actually." "Well, you look lovely! Red definitely suits you. Though, when he gets here, you may want to keep your face out of your hand." With a wink the lady turned to grab her bags from the conveyor and was on her way.

Shaking her head and grinning she returned her gaze down the never-ending corridor leading from the gates as she now replaced ring twisting with hand wringing. Finally, she saw him come into view from the descending escalator. Despite the distance, she could see his giant grin; it was infectious and soon it spread fast across her flushed cheeks. It took every ounce of self control in her not to run down the corridor and throw her arms around him.

As he finally got closer to her, she gave him a little wave and his grin stretched even wider as his eyes scanned her for a cue as to what to do next. Despite the fact that her body was screaming, "take me in your arms and kiss me" her mouth only managed to awkwardly eek out, "how was your flight?" However, she was not alone in her awkwardness. All he could muster through his nerves was, "Good, good." They both shared a chuckle over the fact that two grown people who'd spent so much time talking and getting to know one another could be as backwards as teenagers on their first date. But that soon faded when their eyes met and they embraced.

Her nerves instantly melted away the minute she felt the warmth of his body envelop her. Knowing their time together would be short, she tried her best to memorize everything; the way his arms felt strong around her, how his skin smelled fresh like clean soap and aftershave, and how his cheek felt warm and prickly from the five o'clock shadow just beginning to form when they pulled away from each other.

They lingered locked in a gaze for a moment; oblivious to the busy baggage claim area until an unintelligible, but booming voice came over the PA startling them out of their reverie. "So, what do you want to do first? Are you hungry?" she asked. "I think I just want to check in to the hotel and get settled." But she could see from the twinkle in his eyes that settling was the last thing he had in mind.

Chatting idly on the way to the hotel, her mind raced. The whole situation was surreal to her. They'd spent months getting to know each other as a voice on the phone, text on a page, and through random photos here and there. Despite knowing much about the other, being together here, now, in the flesh brought their flirtation to reality; time to put up or shut up. It was this that was making her legs tremble with excitement and fear all at the same time. She wondered if he could see through her thin, transparent veneer of calm and if he was going through the same in his mind. If he was, he was hiding it well. Little did he know she had a few tricks up her sleeve to catch him off guard.