If you missed Part I of our story, you can read it here.
He was leaving. He’d given notice a while ago. I had no idea until a co-worker asked me if I was going to his goodbye party on Friday night. At first, I was embarrassed for not knowing. Although we kept the fact that we’d been on a few dates from our co-workers, they could definitely see there was something more than work between us when we had to interact at the credit union. Then I felt sad, but I squashed that pretty quickly. I was not attached to him; I was just sad that I hadn’t had him yet. At least, that’s what I told myself. Then I focused on the positive: he couldn’t have been interested in relationship since he knew he was leaving, so there was still a chance for a one-night stand! (I just recreated the happy dance I did 19 years ago after typing that sentence. hehehe)
I don’t know how I wasn’t sent home from work that last week of his. I wore the sluttiest, most revealing clothes to work trying to temp him. On Friday, I wore a black, see-through vest and matching wide-legged pants. i got plenty of attention from members and male co-workers, but not from the one I wanted. When we closed, the officers and counselors who worked in the lobby finished up quickly and headed out to the goodbye party. It took us tellers longer to close out, but he told me before he left that he was looking forward to me coming. Unfortunately, one of our tellers’ drawers was short that night and no one goes home until it’s found.
By the time I got to the restaurant, everyone had already paid their checks and were discussing where they were going next. I suggested he and I do something alone, but when one of our co-workers, Michelle, said she was headed to her neighborhood bar, he said, “That sounds like fun. We’ll join you!” Errr. It’s Friday night, he’s leaving the state on Sunday and he opts to hang out at a bar with our co-worker instead of being along with me. It couldn’t be any clearer that he was not interested in me. I said I was just going to go home but he asked me to come along to the bar. I don’t know why I said yes, but I did.
On our way to the bar I asked him pointblank in the car, “You’re not interested in me at all, are you?” “What?! What makes you think that,” he asked. I ticked off on my fingers, “You’ve never held my hand, you won’t walk me to the front door and everyone knows what happens at the front door, you’ve never tried to kiss me and you didn’t even tell me you were leaving.”
“I’ve wanted to ask you out since I saw you walk out on the teller line your first week at work. But I knew, even then, that I was moving out of state. I didn’t want to get involved and hurt you or get hurt myself when I left. But I couldn’t take it anymore. I had to go out with you. I’ve really enjoyed your company but I didn’t think it was fair to you to take this to the next level.”
My Irish temper flared. “You had no right to make decisions for me. I’m not even interested in a relationship, I’ll. Have. You. Know. I just wanted you. I won’t be hurt when you leave and you wasted a lot of time that we could have spent having fun. Too bad for you!” The rest of the ride was spent in silence. When he parked the car at the bar, he turned the engine off and looked at me. He might have had something to say, but I wouldn’t even look at him. He sighed, got out and came around to open my door. As we walked to the bar, he took my hand. I proceeded to pull my hand out of his. Golly day, I’m stubborn!
We walked in behind Michelle; she headed to the pool tables and we headed to the bar. He ordered himself a beer and me, water. I sat on my stool, facing the bar and he sat on his stool, facing me. His legs were open, the heels of his dress shoes hooked over rungs on either side of the stool. We sat there in silence. “Come on,” he said. “It’s our last night. Don’t be like this! I’m sorry.” I let him stew in my silence.
Halfway through his beer, I turned towards him. I oh, so slowly slid off my stool, walked in between his legs and gradually leaned into his neck. I placed a light kiss on the side of his neck and, just as slowly, back away and climbed up on my stool. The deadpanned look on my face turned into a wicked smile with one cocked eyebrow and silently said to him, “Your move.” Three seconds past in which he didn’t blink. Then, without taking his eyes off me, he shot his right hand in the air and yelled, “CHECK PLEASE!” He opened his wallet and threw some bills on the bar without even looking at them. He stood up, yanked me off my stool and dragged me towards the front door. “WE’RE LEAVING,” he yelled, in Michelle’s general direction. Once again, I was singing in my head, “I’m going to get LUUUUU-CKYYYYY!”
We were in Old Town Alexandria. He drove to the waterfront, found street parking and we got out and walked. Well, we took a few steps, made out, took some more steps, made out…rinse and repeat for an hour until to got too chilly for me. Remember, I was wearing a sleeveless, see-through outfit! On the drive back to TGI Friday’s where my car was, we had a really nice conversation about a lot of things. Important things, like our families, our goals, why he was moving. He parked his car next to mine but I didn’t get out. We continued to talk for a while. And then we fogged up the windows for an hour or so (only making out; I was not going all the way in a car!). He was a wonderful kisser! Before I got out of his car to go home, he told me he was busy the next day packing up his apartment, but he’d come see me on Sunday before he left. “You don’t have to,” I said. “This was a fun evening; let’s just leave it at that. Have a safe move and a nice life. Goodbye.”
On Sunday, I was in a bad mood. I was angry at myself because I couldn’t stop thinking of him. He called in the afternoon and my heart did a little flip; then my brain berated it and I adjusted my voice to the cool setting. “Why are you calling me?” “Because I told you I would,” he replied. “I didn’t get all the packing done yesterday; I thought my friend would be more help than he was. I’m running behind and really need to hit the rode. I’m sorry that I can’t come say goodbye in person.” My voice changes from cool to pissy. “I didn’t ask you to come over. I told you goodbye Friday night. Have a nice life.” I hung up.
Fifteen minutes later, the doorbell rang and my heart fell into my shoes. I was frozen in place and my mom answered the door. “Jessica! It’s for you!” she called. I took several deep breaths and tried to get the stupid grin off my face before heading to the door. The only way I could accomplish that was by crossing my arms in from to of my chest and scrunching my lips and brow into a scowl. My mom was shocked when I came around the corner and she saw my face. I walked right past him and out the front door. I heard him make small talk with my mom for a minute and then he followed me out. When he came up behind me, I turned and unleashed the beast on him.
“What are you doing here?! I said goodbye! I hung up on you! How much more of a hint do you need?!”
I gotta hand it to him, he kept his cool and acted like I’d given him a warm welcome. “I came to tell you I don’t want this to be over. I’m going to call you. I’m going to come back and visit you.”
“There is no this. We had some fun and now it’s over. Just go. Guys can’t handle long distance relationships. I’ve been in 2 before and neither one worked. Besides, I’ve told you, I don’t want a relationship and I certainly don’t want one with you.”
He cradled my face in his hands and chuckled. “Too bad. I want one with you, so you’re stuck with me.”
I pushed his hands off me and turned away.
“Why are you being so mean to me,” he asked.
I spun around and yelled, “BECAUSE YOU GO TO ME, ALRIGHT?! I didn’t want you to, but you did!”
He smiled, “It’s OK. I’m falling for you, too.”
My eyes bugged and I got all flustered. “What the heck are you talking about?! I-I’m not falling for you! I just meant that I…you know…wanted you. You’re….a good kisser, that’s all.”
“I’m glad you think so because you’re going to get a lot more of that in the future.”
I closed my eyes and all the wind went out of my sails. “Don’t do this. Please. Why do guys think they have to say these kinds of lies? Just say goodbye and leave and I’ll think well of you. If you say you’ll call, I’m going to hate you when you don’t.”
“Well, I don’t know why guys do that, because I’m a man. And I’m a man of my word. When I say I’m going to call and I’m going to come back, I will. Now give me a proper goodbye kiss. You’ll never forgive yourself if your last words to me were in anger and then I die in a car accident.” He wrapped his arms around me and kissed me. I left my arms hanging at my sides and refused to return the kiss. At first. But then I couldn’t help myself. Damn him, he put a spark of hope in me! As he drove away, he waved to me until he was out of sight.
I didn’t care what he said, I knew I wasn’t going to see him again. That week at work was loooong and I was missssserable. Everytime the phone rang at home, my heart stopped for a second, wondering, but it was never him. I knew it never would be and shut that door for good. Saturday afternoon I was in the backyard, listening to my walkman with the tape deck while mowing the lawn and sweating like a pig. I saw movement out of the corner of my eye and looked up. My mom was waving to me from the back porch so I turned off the mower and the walkman. She said I had an important phone call. I assumed it was work. The receiver from the wall phone in the kitchen was sitting on the counter and I picked it up. “Hello?”
“What are you doing tonight?” HOLY CRAP, IT WAS HIM! I don’t think I even grinned that wide on that Christmas morning when I got the Barbie with the kinky hair that matched my own. He said he would call and he’d called. Not only that, he’d called within a week! I pulled the receiver away from my face, took some deep breaths to calm myself and wiped the smile off my face. You can hear a smile over the phone!
“I’m in the middle of mowing the lawn,” I replied cooly. “What do you want?”
“I want to know what you’re doing tonight.”
“I don’t know. Reading a book, I guess.”
“Oh, good, then you’re free. I’m on the beltway and I’m picking you up in 15 minutes.”
“No. I’m not. I’ll be there in 15 minutes. Go shower. I don’t mind kissing you all sweaty but I don’t want you sweating in my car.”
“This isn’t funny. You are not on the beltway.”
“Well, you’ll find out in 15 minutes. What are you going to do?” He hung up.
I just stood there. There was no way he was on the beltway. How could he call me from his car?! This is ridiculous’ I’m going to finish the lawn. But…..what if he was 15 minutes away?
I ran up the stairs, 2 at a time. My mom called after me, “Where are you going?” “I’m jumping in the shower! That was him and he said he’s 15 minutes away! He’s taking me out tonight! He came back!”
To be continued…