The movie ends. We all laugh at the intensity. He makes formal introductions. I nod and smile—because I can’t think of anything intelligent to say. We make our way out to the lobby.
I am in agony. COMPLETELY EXPOSED. COMPLETE AGONY. His friends are standing around talking and I’m feeling so very exposed and raw. They are sizing me up discreetly. I’m in their peripheral vision and I can feel it. I want to look at him—for help. But I can’t. He’ll see. He’ll see how much I like him. I want to grab on to his coat and hide behind him and mumble something. Instead. I just stand there exposed and raw. I wrap my arms around myself and look down.
I’m mortified. COMEPLETELY MORTIFIED. My tights are too bright. I have bright-brown legs in dark brown shoes. I look up. One girl is chatting away about the movie. I think she’s saying how she’s mad at her mom for not telling her about the dog. I still can’t find anything intelligent to say. I’m speechless and I’m looking down at my legs. SURELY—surely they’ll figure it out.
Interesting girl C. She’s awfully quiet. Doesn’t say much. What was up with those tights? Why are you hanging out with her? That’ll be the end of it I suppose. I won’t be able to show my face again.
Later, we go for dinner. Just him and me. I’m so nervous from the whole experience—I can’t eat. I can’t even talk. I just look at him and wonder why he’s there.
I stare at his mouth again. I like the way he talks. I like his voice. I know I like what he’s saying—but I’m not paying attention to the words, just the movement of his lips.
I look back at his face. Does he notice me staring? Probably. What have I got to loose this time?
Can I kiss you?
He looks at me sideways. Thinks for a moment, smiles, and nods his head. Sure.