Over a year ago, I couldn’t sleep, so I wrote https://dnla77.wordpress.com/2013/11/15/drafting/
I’ve been feeling like I’ve needed to write recently, so I decided to let Part II spill out here. Enjoy-
After a somewhat successful day on the rooftop filled with writing, daydreaming, and thinking, Sarah ran back home to get a dinner for one started. As she chopped the ingredients for her salad and started to boil her pasta, her phone vibrated. Three words stared back at her on her 4.7inch display, causing her heart to beat like she was coming first in a footrace. It was only 8 PM, which meant the night was young, but she hadn’t been expecting company. Especially, company like this.
“Buzz me in.”
It was Damian. She had not anticipated seeing him so soon after he left that morning saying the usual, “I’ll see you when I see you.” For them, that typically meant that he would call her at 2AM once every couple of weeks or stumble on her doorstep after a drunken night at the nearby bar. Immediately, Sarah dropped the knife in her hand and ran to the mirror, tussling up her undone hair. Instead of buzzing him in right away, she waited a few minutes, pretending that she wasn’t always by her phone hoping he’d give in a little.
As she dialed his number, she wasn’t even sure what she would say when he picked up.
“Hey babe, wanna let me up?”
“Something has to be wrong for me to want to see you?”
“N-no, not like that. It’s just unexpected, that’s all.”
Sarah’s back was turned to the door as she finished up her salad and grabbed an extra table setting. He slowly, but confidently stepped behind her and put his arms around her curvy waist, gently kissing her cheek to say hello. Her cheeks turned red, like the baby tomatoes she had just cut as she folded into his arms, smiling.
“Like a hippo.”
That was a reference to a joke that their law professor once told in their first seminar together while explaining corporate law.
Sarah smiled and grabbed a bottle of Pinot from her cabinet. Damian took the bottle from her hands and opened it, pouring two full glasses and laying them down on the table. All the while, he never really took his eyes off of her as she served a heap of spaghetti Bolognese into his dish. His mouth was salivating, for more than just food.
They made brief eye contact and then swigged the wine before digging into the quickly, yet beautifully prepared meal. That’s how Sarah operated, whether it be in preparation or utilization, she spent little time, all the while paying careful attention to the aesthetics and feel of whatever she touched.
The wine hit the back of her mouth much like how wind breaks into a room during the early morning- refreshing, but at the same time, startling. She was trying not to break out into a sweat, but she had hundreds of questions racing through her mind. For half of the day, she spent time trying to convince herself to stop letting Damian do this to her. She was strong and independent, yet for some reason, he had a hold of her Achilles and wasn’t going to let go anytime soon.
Damian could sense her uneasiness as he glanced up with a mouthful of savory spaghetti and smirked. She let out a quick laugh and started a normal discussion to stray from her anxiety.
“Did you close the Strathmore case?”
“It’s nearly there. Probably one more witness before they crack and beg for the settlement offer again.”
“Oh, good. It’s been dragging out for a while now. How about things with your mom, did everything get sorted out with the house?”
“Yup, all is good there too. But, enough about me. Tell me about your day. Did you start your next bestseller? Reach out to Oprah to add it to her book club already?”
He chuckled, sincerely.
“Very funny. It was a productive day, but for some reason, I just don’t know where to go with this one. The last one came so naturally and easily, I feel like I’m spending days forcing words onto the page, so it’s not feeling as real. You know?”
“Give it time, Sarah. Give it time.”
She listened; she understood what he was saying with that advice. Patience wasn’t her strongest suit, but she also was her own worst critic. Pushing herself was what she did best, since she was a child. She gave herself high expectations, and more often than not, she surpassed them all.
“Pasta good? I wasn’t expecting anyone, so I made it spicy, how I like it. Do you need water?”
“It’s perfect, hun. Really, thank you.”
She just looked at him. He knew what she was wondering, so he decided to put her mind to rest.
“I didn’t mean to come unannounced. I’m not even sure what brought me here tonight, but it was like a subconscious compulsion. I left the office and my feet sort of guided me here, to you. You’ve been on my mind a lot lately, and after last night, well… yeah.”
Sarah was red again. Not like the baby tomato red, more like the deep red of the Pinot Noir in her hand. She took another gulp, licked her lips, and forced a smile.
She continued eating slowly. She was not really sure what to think or how to feel. One on hand, she couldn’t be more excited seeing Damian across the table indulging in her meal and talking like he was. But, on the other hand, she wanted to throw her plate at his face while screaming to get out and never come back. He had this hold on her that caused a beautiful pain, like when a knot is released from your back during a massage. You know that there’s something outside of your body needed to expound the toxins, to take the group of twisted muscles, break them apart, and let in the oxygen- allowing you to breathe again. But, the built up tension becomes a normal feeling, until it’s released, and you can realize that what had been there the whole time was actually not meant to stay.