A Short Story by MandyRenae
The day was gloomy and overcast, but that didn't stop Leila McCarthy from enjoying it. In fact, it was her favorite kind of day. She wasn't exactly sure why. There were so many aspects she loved. She loved having to get bundled up. She loved the prospect of rain that most cloudy days held. She especially loved the fact that often times, she was the only one who wanted to go outside and brave the cold.
She had just finished her final class, and was blissfully enjoying the cold weather while sipping on a hot coco. She was ripped from cloud nine when someone ran into her rather forcefully.
"I'm sorry," Said a not-so-sorry sounding voice. "Say, could you tell me what time it is?"
"2:47." Leila replied bluntly after checking her watch. She didn't want to look at him. She was certain that it was no accident when he nearly knocked her to the ground.
"You'll want to remember that time forever. I know that I will."
Leila couldn't help but look up at him, getting her first glance at his appearance. He was average, with wavy brown hair, and brown eyes. His hair wasn't really parted, but his bangs were brushed carelessly to the side, revealing a small outbreak of zits on his forehead. His lips were really full. They were almost too full for a boy, and that bothered Leila a lot.
"What are you talking about?" The words burst from her mouth the instant she had finished her observation.
"Well, don't you want to remember the time that we met for the rest of your life?" He smiled, hitched his laptop bag up his shoulder, and began walking away.
Leila turned to watch him in bewilderment. Was that just a pick up line?
Before he had gotten too far away, he turned and called to her. "My name's Ryan, by the way. What's yours?"
Leila just shook her head at him. "Didn't your mom ever tell you not to talk to strangers?" Still shaking her head, she turned and walked in the opposite direction.
His name echoed through her head for a minute. Ryan. Ha. What a stupid, generic name. There were at least five Ryans in her graduating class alone.
She was still fuming when she reached her dorm room.
"What's up Lay?" Her roommate, Chastity asked, looking up from her text book.
"I just met a guy." She pouted, sitting on her bed.
Chastity grinned. "A guy? Details please!"
Leila rolled her eyes. "He was so annoying. He had these stupid, poofy lips. Seriously, they were way to full for a boy." She started using large hand gestures to illustrate her point. "They looked like Angelina freaking Jolie's lips."
Her roommate laughed, running a hand through her perfect blonde hair. "Is that the only thing that was wrong with him?"
"No!" She protested in return. It took her a second to continue. She had noticed just how flawless Chastity's hair was. It made her think about how messed up her auburn curls were. When the thought passed, she went on, with a fraction less of enthusiasm. "Well, he ran into me, and he used a pick up line on me!"
"A pick up line? What one?"
"That's not the point. The point is that he was really terrible."
"Sounds like you really hate him, Lay." Chastity responded sarcastically. She looked back down to her text book, uninterested in Leila's rant.
"Geez!" Leila grabbed her hair with frustration, "You're no help at all Chas."
A week later, Leila was waiting in line at a local café. All she wanted was a hot chocolate, and she was at the end of a mile-long line of people who, presumably wanted a complex order of coffee that would take five minutes to name, alone.
She felt some one step up behind her. At least she wasn't the last one in line anymore. The person behind her moved uncomfortably close to her.
She was about to turn around and tell him off when a distantly familiar voice spoke casually in her ear. "Would you look at the time? 2:47 on the dot."
Leila jumped. "You!" She accused. "Are you stalking me or something?"
"Not purposefully. I was just walking by the café, and happened to see you waiting in line." He responded nonchalantly, shrugging his shoulders. "The way I see it, it was fate, giving me a second chance to get your name."
"Not gonna happen." Leila turned back to the line, intent on ignoring him. She was delighted to find that the line had moved up a tad. She moved with it, and, unfortunately, so did the pest behind her.
"Are you sure? I'm really persistent." This was definitely going to be the longest line ever.
Twenty minutes later, Leila was finally next in line. Sure enough, the girl ahead of her was ordering the longest coffee name she had ever heard.
Eventually, it was Leila's turn. She made her way to the counter, relieved that she was finally at the front. "I'd like a hot chocolate, please?"
She made to take her wallet out of her purse when the jerk-who-won't-be-named spoke. "Make that two." Before she could even react, he handed the bills to the cashier, and had change in his hand.
"Wh-no. Why did you do that?"
He shrugged. "Felt like it."
She reached inside her wallet and took out two dollars. "Here. Take it. I don't want to feel like I owe you something."
"I never let a girl pay on a date." He gently steered her away from the counter to let the next person order.
"This isn't a d-"
"Just give me your name, and we'll call it even." He sent her a blinding smile.
How can someone with such full lips have a smile that perfect?
Before she could even answer him, she heard her name. In a knee-jerk reaction, she turned her head and recognized Haley from her Psychology class.
"Hey Leila, I was wondering if you finished your advertising analysis yet? Because I was having some trouble with—" She cut off, seeing Ryan for the first time. "Oh, never mind, I'll talk to you later then." She waved and began walking away.
"Well then, Leila. I guess you don't have to give me your name to repay me."
Leila groaned, suddenly realizing exactly what Haley had done. "Then take the stupid money."
"No, just take the date."
She scowled at him.
His face fell. "Please?"
Leila found that she couldn't resist when his face looked so pathetic. "Oh, alright. But just this one date and only the hot chocolate."
Their drinks were ready. Ryan grabbed the paper cups from the pick up counter, and fitted a lid on each of them. "So, Leila, what would you like to do on our date?" He sounded euphoric. "Go to the park? Stay here in the café? Just walk around?"
She laughed at his enthusiasm. "Let's just walk around." It was another overcast day; she wanted to be outside as much as possible.
They began their "date" with simple small talk. An hour later, they were still talking. Leila found that she had a million things in common with Ryan. He even liked cloudy days for the same reasons as her. His lips still bothered her, though.
They were talking about their favorite bands, when Leila's cell phone went off. She looked at the caller ID, and saw that it was Chastity. "Do you mind?" She didn't want to be rude to Ryan.
He shook his head. "Go on ahead."
"Where are you?"
"With this guy." She was unable to keep the smile from her face as she met Ryan's eyes. He smiled with her.
"I want details later, but right now you need to be here! You're late, and your parents are here."
"Oh shoot." She hit her forehead as a light went off in her head. She remembered the dinner she was supposed to have with her parents. "I'll be there in ten minutes."
She shut her phone, and looked at Ryan apologetically. "I'm so sorry, Ryan. I forgot, I have this dinner thing with my parents, and I'm already late.
"It's alright. It's getting late anyways. I've got homework and stuff."
"Thanks. I'll see you later." She turned and began running in the direction of her dorm, where her parents were waiting.
She did not realize that she didn't have his number until she was putting the key into the slot of her dorm building.
Leila spent the next week and a half cursing herself for not getting Ryan's number. She had never connected to any boy like she had with him. It may have been easy if he lived in the dorms on campus, the school put out a dorm directory. She had tried searching MySpace, Facebook, and any other social network website she could think of. It was no use. There were too many Ryans in the area, and she had no idea what his last name was.
She went to the café most days, hoping he would have the same idea. Soon, She became discouraged. What if she was just a game to him? He got his date, her name, he needed nothing else from her.
She was sitting down at a table in the café, with her back to the line. In her spare time, she liked to sit down with a book and just drink her hot chocolate. Today, she was rereading Twilight, but she wasn't really reading. She was listening to the people in the line.
Suddenly, she heard a familiar voice. "I'd like a white chocolate raspberry caramel latte with two shots espresso, and a hot chocolate."
Leila was flabbergasted. He drinks those stupid, annoying long-named coffees? She picked up her book, and buried her head inside it. That was one of her pet peeves, and she wasn't sure if she could stand dating him. At least my back is to him. He probably hasn't seen me. She had forgotten that her red hair could practically be seen from space
Leila pretended to be absorbed in Edward and Bella's world, and in the process, she was accidently sucked into the novel's text. She didn't notice that he had come up behind her until he whispered in her ear. "I lost my number. Can I have yours?"
Leila heard a girl laugh as she jumped five feet into the air, with a little yelp. She smoothed down her curls, and turned around to scold Ryan, but stopped when she saw him standing with a very pretty brunette. "Ry Ry. That was great!"
Ry Ry? What kind of stupid nickname is that? Who is she anyways? Leila forced a smile, and pretended that she hadn't wanted to see him all week, sans the girl. "Hi Ryan. How are you?"
He smiled his perfect smile. "I'm really good Leila."
Leila looked awkwardly between Ryan and the girl. "Well, I should probably let you guys go." She turned around.
"Leila." Ryan spoke abruptly to her back. "This is my twin sister, Tammy."
Leila's cheeks burned. She felt really stupid. "Hi Tammy." The smile was still forced, but this time it was only because of her embarrassment. After a few moments, it became genuine. "I didn't know that you had a twin Ryan."
"There's a lot you don't know about me." He leaned over the back of her chair.
"Like…?" She leaned a little bit closer to him.
"You know me, I don't do something for nothing. If you want to know, you'll have to do something for me." He winked suggestively at her.
Tammy groaned. "This is where I leave."
Leila jumped. "Oh, I don't want to interrupt your twin bonding time."
"No, actually, I was just about to leave anyways. I was just getting some coffee for the road. My boyfriend will be waiting." At the mention of her boyfriend, her face lit up.
She took a sip of her drink, and bent down near Leila. "Give my brother a chance," she whispered conspiratorially, "He's really not that bad of a guy."
"Bye sis," Ryan said, ruffling her hair.
She glared at him, fixing her hair. "Watch the hair, Ry Ry."
He sent her a glare of his own. "Don't call me Ry Ry, Tam Tam."
She just sent him a grin. Leila could see their resemblance. They had the same perfect smile. She turned to leave, "Ta ta guys! It was nice meeting you Leila." She waved over her shoulder, and walked out of the café.
Without an invitation, Ryan sat across from her.
"Who said you could sit there?"
"Me. What's this you're reading?" He took a look at my book. "Oh no. Don't tell me you're a Twilight fan too."
She couldn't help but smile. "What if I am?"
"I've had bad experiences with Twilight fans." He shuddered in a playful way.
"It can't be that terrible."
He looked at her pointedly. "You're not a guy. You don't have to be compared to Edward Cullen every day of your life."
"It's a good thing that I'm realistic. I'll never compare you to him seriously." She realized what the statement implied, and bowed her head to hide the blush.
Ryan brushed it off, and continued talking. "Now, are you dying to know what you'll have to do to know more about me?" He reclined back in a very confident, masculine manner with his hands behind his head.
She, in turn, leaned forward, propping her face with her right hand. "What makes you think I want to know more about you?"
"Fine. You don't want to know." He folded his arms across his chest, still very sure of himself. "The least you could do is give me your number. In case you forgot, I lost mine." He smirked cockily.
That stupid smirk does nothing to help his stupid, full lips. Leila put her hand down, and caught a glimpse of her watch. She needed to meet Chastity in ten minutes. "I'd argue with you, but I need to go. Can I see your phone?"
He pulled a sleek, silver phone out of his jacket and handed it across the table to her. Quickly, Leila entered her number into the phone.
She gave him a smile, handed back the phone, and then got up to leave. "Bye Ry Ry." She gave him a playful little wave.
"Thanks Tammy." He grumbled to the table.
Before Leila was a block away from the café, she felt a buzz in her pocket:
I miss you already
That one message had Leila smiling all the way back to her dorm.
"Hey, Leila?" Ryan's voice on the message sounded nervous. "Um… this is Ryan. Well, Of course this is Ryan." Leila could imagine him running a hand through his hair. "I was um, wondering if you were, um, free this Friday night? We could go see a movie or something." There was a pause, as if he didn't know what to say. "Well, um… I guess call me? I'll talk to you later."
Leila saved the message and lay down on her bed with a goofy grin. As with most boys, he seemed a little bit nervous about actually asking a girl out.
"Is it Ryan again?" Chastity was looking at her with a knowing smile.
Leila nodded, rolling onto her stomach. "He asked me out for Friday."
"Well, what are you waiting for? Call him back right now!" Chastity picked up her purse from the desk. "I think I'll just go down to the vending machine to give you a little privacy." She winked, and left the room.
Leila took out her phone and scrolled through her contacts list. When she reached Ryan's name, she pressed the call button.
"Hey." She could hear the smile in his voice.
"Hey to you too."
"Hold on a second." She could hear a door shut, and seconds later, there was the slight groan that a bed made when you sat on it. "Okay. I can talk."
"So, about Friday night, I—"
He cut her off. "It's alright if you don't want to. I was just thinking."
Leila had to laugh. She had always seen Ryan as very confident and self-assured. This new side to him was very endearing. "I'd love to go out with you, Ryan."
He made a sigh of relief before quickly making plans to go to an early movie, and then out to dinner. He had to go after that; he and his roommates were actually studying.
Friday crept up on Leila slowly. She really liked Ryan, despite their bad start, and his poufy lips.
He picked her up at five, and they left for the movie. Leila felt skittish and jittery.
Ryan could tell. He put his hand at the small of her back. "It's alright. I'm nervous too."
They had a great time walking to the theater. Anybody could see their chemistry by looking at them. The movie was great, and afterwards, they made their way to a decent diner only a block away from the theater. They got their food, and never ran out of anything to say.
The way back was a twenty minute walk, and Leila was anticipating it. They walked in a companionable silence, and five minutes from the diner, Ryan broke it. "Hey, do you think you could hold something for me?"
Leila nodded. "Yeah, what is it?"
He slipped his hand into hers. "This."
The two grinned bashfully, and continued their walk in silence. The whole way back, all Leila could think about was his lips. They were extremely full. What would it be like to kiss them? Would it be weird, or would it make it even better.
Before she knew it, they had arrived at her dorm. She slid the key into the front door and Ryan insisted that he should walk her up.
They stopped outside her room, and Leila turned to face him, still holding his hand. "I had a great time tonight."
"Me too." He reached up, and cupped her cheek with his free hand. He began leaning in, and Leila had a fleeting thought about his full lips, before they actually touched hers. As she kissed him back, she found that she didn't mind his lips anymore. They were perfect.
Time sped by for Leila during her relationship with Ryan. For every anniversary they had, he came up with the perfect date. They were progressively better each time they celebrated something.
She knew she loved him. He knew he loved her. They had told each other for the first time after eight months of dating. They were perfect for each other, although they still had occasional fights. Even the best relationships have fights.
Leila couldn't believe that their one year anniversary was coming up in a couple of weeks. That meant that it was close to a year since she had met him.
It was a Thursday when Ryan asked Leila to get a hot chocolate with her. He still liked to do little things together, and she loved it. In most of her previous relationships, that had stopped after the first few weeks.
He picked her up around two in the afternoon. They held hands all the way to the same café where they had begun their relationship.
While Ryan ordered drinks, Leila took the time to study him. It was strange to remember that she had once found him very average with huge, poufy lips. She definitely didn't think of him like that any more. In her mind, there was no other man more perfect for her.
By the time that they had finally received their drinks, it was almost 2:30. Ryan looked anxious. Leila had no idea what it could be. Their anniversary wasn't for another two weeks. She shrugged it off, wanting to enjoy every moment that she had with him.
He walked her through campus. He seemed to be leading them somewhere. Fifteen minutes later, they were in a spot that sparked something in Leila's memory, but she couldn't quite place it.
Ryan let go of her hand, fumbling with something in his pocket. She kept walking, and he fell behind her. He placed his hands on her waist, stopping her in her place. "Can you tell me what time it is?" He whispered softly in her ear.
Leila suddenly remembered that this was where she had first met Ryan, and looked at her watch. "2:47, why?"
He let go of her waist, and stepped back.
When Leila turned around, he was on one knee with a shining diamond ring in his hand. Her hand automatically went to her mouth in surprise and disbelief.
"Well, don't you want to remember the time that I proposed to you forever?"
Well, what do you think? Please give me a some feedback, constructive critisism, any thoughts! Just nothing hateful!
And while you're at it, please check out my other story, Even the Brightest Stars Can Be Dull!
Hugs and Kisses!