Dim lighting has apparently struck a chord with me, since a lot of rooms I write into my writing project tend to be dimly lit – in fact, the first scene in the entire series takes place in a room which a main character notes to be hardly light enough even to see anyone’s face.
In any case, this room fits the bill. A nice bright window, but easy on the artificial lighting inside.
We order what we want to eat. That’s nice. All my other dates have been really awkward when we went to order food. We always cared too much about coordination, or something; it’s nice to just… get what you want. Not worry about impressing anyone, or whatever the complication was in the past. Ordering honestly seems to be a sign of good chemistry: no effort required, you’re just compatible.
I pull out an old deck of cards while we’re waiting for the food. I deal a few hands of poker and teach her the basics. She laughs when I tell her that I bought the cards five minutes ago, just for this date, but it’s true. I like doing things on a whim, being spontaneous, at least every once in a while.
We’re not the only ones there, not for long. Another pair of people come in. I don’t think they’re quite on a date. (How do I know this is a real date? She asked me out on a real date. How did I come to realize exactly how bold and honest and cool she was? Same answer.)
Watching the other pair from the Academy walk in, sit down, and exchange in what seems to be slightly uncomfortable conversation, I’m really glad to be sitting with Rose. I don’t feel like I need to have an agenda; I don’t feel like every second of the conversation needs to be an attempt at impressing her. I try to make her laugh and smile, of course, but that’s exactly what I want to do. I don’t feel awkward or forced when I’m with her. Somehow it feels incredibly natural, like it’s exactly where I’m supposed to be.
All I have to do is be there, listen, and talk. She’ll make me smile; she always does. I’ll make her laugh in return. And we’ll both have quite a wonderful time.
I notice that the pair at the other table is glancing over at us every so often. I don’t quite understand that. I don’t care that they’re there. I’m not paying any attention to them, and I don’t care what they think of me (at least right now). All that matters is Rose.
As always, thanks for reading!