"Fine, but just one date," I said. He nodded while smiling.
"And don't get your hopes too high," I added. He nodded again and this time he raised his right hand as if he was making an oath.
"I promise that I won't expect too much, and I promise that I will only concentrate on making you happy," he uttered.
Chapter 13: Taking Chances
"What are you planning to wear tomorrow?" Princess asked excitedly.
It's a Friday night and we are having an emergency sleepover. Princess immediately decided that we should do it after I told her that David asked me out on a date. She squealed in delight as if it was her who was being asked out.
"Well, he told me to wear something appropriate for a formal dinner," I informed her.
"Wow. He just asked you a little earlier today, but he already has a plan?" Her eyes were filled with shock.
"It's just dinner. You don't have to plan it," I told her while laughing.
"Oh. You're right. So, back to what we were talking about, what are you planning to wear? Something cute? Or something sexy?" She uttered the last few words seductively. I couldn't help but redden.
"What are you talking about? This is just an innocent date with a friend," I retorted.
"Who might be your future boyfriend," she added. I just rolled my eyes at her.
"Well, I was thinking that I'd wear one of the dresses that we bought last Saturday," I told her.
"That's a given! But which one?" she replied.
"How about the black silky frock? Then… a pair of strappy wedges for my footwear," I suggested. She nodded as she pictured the image in her mind.
"And that cute cardigan that we bought, in case it gets cold," she added thoughtfully. I smiled, satisfied.
"Brilliant!" she exclaimed.
"But what will I do with my hair?" I asked her while trying out some styles.
"With the dress that you chose, I think leaving your hair down would be best," she said.
"Yeah, I think you're right," I said absentmindedly.
"Of course I am!" she grinned. Ugh, she always does that every single time. It got annoying after some time, but hey, I still love her.
"Whatever," I replied. She went to my closet and looked for the outfit that we just talked about. And when she found them, she took them out and placed them on my bed. She stood there looking busy while checking the dress out.
I moved towards her and stood in front of her, face to face.
"Will you do my makeup for me?" I tried sounding cute. I even batted my eyelashes to convince her that I was.
"I will, but please stop doing that. It totally doesn't fit you," she joked.
"Okay then," I grinned and batted my eyelashes again. We both laughed together.
"You only have thirty minutes left!" Princess yelled, panicking.
"You're not helping," I replied, mirroring the look that was on her face.
"This is all your fault! I told you to prepare early, but you were so engrossed with your Science project that you lost track of time," she said in disbelief.
"You fell asleep," I retorted, trying to put all the blame on her.
"We were talking about the Science project!" Her words spelled DUH!
"Forget it. Makeup and my hair are the only ones left that we have to fix," I reported.
"Then, I'll blow dry your hair while you get started with your makeup," she commanded as if she were the boss.
"Yes ma'am," I exclaimed.
We immediately worked on our stuff that after 20 minutes, we were already done. The makeup didn't look like it was rushed. It was all thanks to Princess who did her wonders after she blew dry my hair. Another five minutes passed before the doorbell finally rang.
"Oh my God! He's here," Princess squealed. I wanted to say something, but my throat felt dry. Even my lips which had the lip gloss that I applied just a while ago felt dry. I am so damn nervous. I just hope this day will end without any mishaps.
I heard the door open and thought that maybe it was dad since he was also looking tense when I told her that I was going out to a date with another guy. He was also like that when Steve and I went out for our first date. My dad's the typical overprotective and strict father, but the reasonable type. Without delay, I decided to go downstairs to save David from father's inquisition. As I took one step at a time down the stairs, I heard my dad's and David's voices.
"11 o'clock in the evening," Dad said. His voice sounded like that of a military man, refusing to give away any emotion. He sounded like he was trying to scare and intimidate David.
"Yes sir, I promise I will," David replied. His voice was obviously shaking. I tried to stifle my giggle so that I won't get their attention. Princess was also about to laugh when I covered her mouth with my right hand to shut her up and then glared at her.
Before I went towards them, I hid for a little while so that I could stare at David without being awkward. My eyes widened when I realized that he had a new haircut. He looked neater and more handsome. He was also gorgeous with his gray button up shirt and the two top buttons left open showing some of his masculinity.
"Wow, he can be that handsome," Princess commented beside me, voicing out my thoughts.
I didn't bother responding and decided to show myself to them. When they finally realized that I was already standing a few meters from them, their faces brightened up, but what was more evident was how David's face relaxed. I fought the urge to chuckle again.
"You look stunning," he said. His eyes were sparkling when they met mine.
"Thank you," I mumbled. My cheeks felt warm, but I didn't bother hiding the blush anymore.
"You're looking hot yourself," I said while grinning. But the grin right away vanished when I heard dad clear his throat.
"You're beautiful honey. I always knew that you would turn up into such a lady since you were a kid," dad commented.
I laughed when I grasped the meaning of his words. He was trying to compete with David when it came to giving me a more flattering compliment. And he was also hinting that he knew me more than David knows me. He was acting possessive and caring. I tried to stifle my laughter when I saw Daddy throwing me his what's-wrong-with-you?-choose-me look.
"Thank you, dad," I answered and kissed his cheek.
"Tell mom once she arrives from Daniel's basketball game that I have already left," I added.
"I will. Oh, and take care," he said while looking at me. He was clearly ignoring David's existence. My dad was acting so cute.
"Sure thing," I said and smiled at him.
"I'll take care of her, sir," David interjected. Dad finally realized that he just couldn't not talk to David so he finally turned to him, acting as if seeing him for the first time.
"You better do," Dad warned him, his tone trying to scare the hell out of him.
"Bye dad!" I tried to make the tone of my voice jolly just so that I could cut away the blanket of tension that was hanging around us.
Once we were on his red gorgeous car that I don't know what model exactly since I am not a fan of cars, I asked him where we were going, but he just smiled at me, which was totally unfair, and then told me that it was a surprise. He had an amused glint in his eyes. During the ride, we talked about a lot of things about ourselves. We really looked like a would-be couple who were trying to know more about each other. I learned that both of his parents are half American and half Mexican. His dad is a good businessman while his mom prefers to take care of her children so she resigned from being a high school teacher. We also talked about our interests, our first crushes, our first love which made it a little awkward but we passed through it, our most embarrassing moments and just about everything under the sun. Our questions sounded like they were directly lifted from those slam books.
After about 30 minutes of travelling, I asked him again where we were going, but he just smiled again and told me to be patient since we were near already. I looked outside my car window to look for clues that may tell me where the hell I was. I gasped when I saw the dark vast sea to my right. This only means that we were really far from the city. But when I was about to voice out my apprehension, the car halted in front of a tall red gate with the word "Utopia" written on it in big capital letters. The security guard who was manning the tiny guard house beside the gate walked towards David's side of the car and knocked on his window. When David rolled down his window, the guard scanned the inside of the car to check the people inside.
"We have a reservation, sir," David informed him.
"Oh. Name?" His voice was very deep and it lacked enthusiasm. Maybe he was already tired from a long day of work.
"David Garcia," David replied.
"Everything has been set up sir. Enjoy your night," he said while faking a smile.
The gates opened wide signaling David to drive through it. When we arrived in front of the resort hotel, he gave the key for valet parking. We immediately entered the hotel and he told me to wait on the lobby while he talked to someone about something. I decided to suppress my curiosity first since I know he won't still answer my question. After a few minutes, he came back and told me that we would be taking a walk along the beach. I still didn't ask since there's a possibility that he prepared the 'formal dinner' near the seashore. But when we arrived there, there was nothing but the dark ocean and the sandy shore. No tables, no candles. Na-da. And then he started walking along the seashore. But I didn't move an inch.
"You really meant what you said?" I asked, not able to hold back any longer.
"Which one?" he responded while smiling at me.
"That we are going to walk along the sea shore," I said.
"Yes, of course. Why?" he asked.
"Well, because one, you told me that we will be having a formal dinner, and two, because of that, I wore a dress and a pair of high heels. I can't walk on sandy grounds with them," I told him.
"Hmm. About the formal dinner, yes, we will be having that. The dress, it's perfect, you look perfect. But the heels, I think we have to do something about that," he reported. But before I could ask more, he knelt down in front of me, making me gasp. But then I realized what he was planning to do. He started to loosen the straps of my wedges to slip them off me. His hands felt warm when they touched my sensitive skin. However, after a while, he was still struggling and he couldn't take them off. I laughed at his face full of frustration.
"Ugh, I can't believe my clumsiness just ruined our first romantic moment," he joked making me chuckle.
"There's a small zipper behind my ankle," I informed him.
"Oh." He blushed. After he took them off, he stood up while carrying my sandals.
"Problem solved," he said while saluting. I smiled at him.
"Just leave it all to me, 'kay?" he added.
"Fine," I replied.
As we walked, David asked me a lot of questions. About my childhood days, what I was like when I was a kid, what my plans are for college. I talked and talked about myself while he just attentively listened in fascination. There were times when one of us threw jokes at each other and then we just laughed like old friends. I was really enjoying myself when I saw a translucent canoe five meters in front of us. It had a tiny table at the center and a lighted pink scented candle on it.
"Are we having our dinner in that canoe?" I asked, my voice full of excitement. That would really be a first.
"I'm sorry to disappoint you, but no. We'll just ride on it for a while." He looked dejected.
"Oh. That's okay. This would still be a first," I said, trying to assure him that it was perfectly alright. His face lightened up.
"Then would you go and sail with me to the ends of the world? Together, you and I," he said dramatically. I laughed at his teasing tone.
"Sure thing, mister." I smiled and stepped into one side of the canoe. I saw him took off his shoes first and then folded the edges of his pants. He then pushed the canoe to the sea and then carefully rode on it. I was about to get one of the paddles which was placed horizontally below the table when he stopped my hand.
"I'll do it," he said then winked at me.
"Okay then. But where are we going?" I asked.
"Don't you j-just l-love the sea?" he stuttered.
"You're really not good at changing topics," I said while trying not to laugh.
"Yeah, I know," he admitted. I chuckled.
As he steered the boat, no one dared talk. We were just sitting in comfortable silence. I felt the cold breeze on my face, and so I closed my eyes to enjoy the feeling. The sound of water slushing relaxed my tense muscles. Wow, this is pure bliss.
After minutes of drifting into my own world, which I often do, I opened my eyes to look at where we were. The first thing I saw was David's eyes which were staring at me. He quickly averted them when he realized that I could see him already. I scanned the surrounding darkness to avoid awkwardness when something caught my attention.
A cottage was floating more or less 10 meters from our canoe. It was adorned by a series of colorful lights which reminded me of Christmas. There were also flowers scattered all over the cottage. Rose petals were spread on the cottage's floor. A candlelit dinner waited at the center with two waiters and a waitress standing beside the table. My mouth was wide open as I took in the beauty of the image in front of me. It was amazingly awesome. As we went closer and closer, love songs serenaded the stillness of the night. Music reverberated on every corner of the still sea that it could reach. My heart thumped in rhythm with the music playing on the background. I was utterly mute. David's voice jerked me back to reality.
"Are you done gaping?" he joked while handing his right hand to me. He was already on the cottage. It made me think of how long I have been gawking that I didn't even realize that we already docked.
"This is perfect, David. You didn't have to do all of this," I said, ignoring his joke. I was really feeling guilty. I didn't give him any promises but he had still gone to this extent.
"I didn't have to, but I really wanted to," he replied while grinning. Warmth replaced the coldness that the breeze caused on my cheeks. How can he be so cheesy and adorable at the same time?
"Let's have our dinner first. I know you're starving," he continued. As if on cue, my tummy grumbled so hard that even the waiters and the waitress heard it. I looked at them, only to see them trying real hard not to laugh. But when David couldn't contain his mirth, he barked a loud laughter which made them follow his move. I flushed real hard. To hide my embarrassment, I started walking towards one of the chairs. David then followed, still with an amused smile on his face. The waiters started serving us food which was ridiculously the best one that I've ever had. We only talked occasionally since I was so busy engulfing the delicious food in front of me.
When we were finally done, I felt bloated that I didn't want to move, but David insisted that we sway to at least one song before heading back since it was getting late. I complied but instantly regretted when I heard the song that started to play when I stood up. It was the song that was playing when Steve… Steve ended it all.
"Is something wrong?" David asked when I didn't budge an inch.
"No, I'm fine," I said weakly. I couldn't destroy this perfect evening – not by thinking about him.
Please, just this once, get out of my mind. We started dancing, my hands were on his shoulders while his were on my waist. I tried to focus on David's face, but all I could see was Steve's. I rested my head on David's chest to hide my face, to hide the panic that was clouding my eyes.
Why can't he just leave me alone? I'm happy with David. I tried to convince myself, but memories of him were really persistent. So I decided to just give up and let myself think about him.
Just this one song… I'm really sorry David. I closed my eyes, a tear falling from them as memories of my unbeatable best day all came back to me.A/N: Sorry that it took me so long to update. :)) Well, Merry Christmas! :)