‘How’s Joe’s Restaurant? I hear they have good food. Plus, it’s right on the beach,’ Mark texted me.
I said it sounded fantastic and we agreed on Saturday night. I was so excited that I decided to go out shopping with Chloe. I’ve noticed that it’s always best to try on clothes before eating. Even if we were super-hungry!
“How’s this?” I said as I popped out of one of the dressing rooms wearing a blue dress.
Chloe scrunched her face. “It’s so loose on you.”
I shrugged. “I could always wear a belt.”
“Why not try something that fits you? Something a little sexier!”
“I don’t want to try too hard,” I said.
“Honey,” Chloe said, “you’re not trying at all.”
Chloe vanished into the clothes outside and went into shopping zone. In a matter of seconds she came back with an LBD.
“You can never go wrong with an LBD,” she winked. “I was eyeing this while we were perusing. It’ll look good on you. Trust me.”
I assessed it in her hands. “It’s backless.”
“It’s sexy.” She handed it to me and I took it reluctantly.
I hated it when Chloe was right. It was amazing. When it came to shopping she knew exactly what was right for me. Once I got out of the room I twirled for Chloe and she clapped.
“Bravo! Bravo!” she said.
And then it was like my eyes were playing tricks on me. Daniel was here. Daniel! I pulled Chloe with me behind the wall to try and spy on him.
“What? What is it?” Chloe said.
“Shhh!” I said.
“What are we doing?” she whispered.
“Daniel,” I pointed. “He’s here.”
Her eyes widened. “Mr. Hottie McNaughty?”
I rolled my eyes. “What’s he doing in a women’s store?”
I felt her shrug. “Maybe he’s secretly a drag.”
“Of course, that explains everything,” I joked.
I couldn’t believe he was shopping alone in a women’s store, so I scanned for any other reason and, hey, at least I was right in that department. As soon as I saw the blonde bombshell he was following around my jaw dropped. She was wearing wedges and a breezy dress that showed her perfectly rounded chest, obviously supported by a brassiere. No way was it that high and contoured without one. Of course he would pick her. But I didn’t think he had a girlfriend.
“What happened to all that, ‘he’s a player’ talk?” I asked Chloe.
She shrugged. “Maybe that’s his friend.”
I chuckled. “I don’t think they’re friends, Chloe.”
“Just a theory, maybe you should ask him.”
Before she could say any more the blonde bombshell walked past us blindly and into one of the dressing rooms, and Chloe pushed me out into the open. I turned around to tell her off, but I was interrupted by none other than Daniel.
Chloe receded into the background and just smiled. I narrowed my eyes at her and shook my head, which only made her snicker like a little girl.
“Oh, Daniel, hi,” I said in a pitch that was a little too high.
He appraised me and then smiled that effortless smile. “Nice dress. Special occasion?”
Just when I was about to say it was nothing, Chloe interjected.
“She’s going on a date Saturday night.”
I eyed her with a what-are-you-doing look. There was a pause in the conversation and I could tell they were waiting for something.
“Oh, Chloe, Daniel; Daniel, Chloe,” I introduced.
They greeted each other. In that moment a friend of Daniel’s came up to stand beside him, and then another came. Well, clearly he wasn’t entirely alone. They were just scattered. Maybe Priscilla Queen of the Desert was making a comeback.
“So,” I began, “shopping with your girlfriend?”
Ugh! I felt Chloe’s gaze on me and I knew what she was thinking because I was thinking the same thing: could I be any more obvious (of course it’s the way Chandler from Friends says it to add a little humour to the awkward situation). His friends looked at each other and laughed, Daniel just smiled.
“No,” he said, “she’s just a friend.”
I nodded knowingly. “For lack of a better word, right?”
Daniel’s smile grew wider. “So I guess that means you’re coming over during the day on Saturday, since you’ll probably be a little occupied during the night,” he winked.
I felt my cheeks heat red. Curse my pale skin! “Sure.”
Chloe elbowed me and I shrugged. Like I know what I’m doing.
“Anyway, we better get going,” Chloe said.
“Yeah, maybe you should call in the cavalry,” I said, “I think your friend got lost in the dressing room or something.”
Chloe and Daniel’s friends laughed. And it was on cue, just then the bombshell came out wearing another hot number. I couldn’t blame Daniel, she was smokin’.
“Hi,” she said. “I’m Sandy.”
I imagined Daniel forgot her name and she just reminded him.
“They were just leaving,” Daniel said.
“Yeah, nice to meet you Sandy,” I said.
“Bye,” she said. Her voice was so teeny-bopper.
We skedaddled out of there quicker than I could slip out of that dress. On the way home Chloe and I contemplated the many possibilities of Daniel’s motives of shopping with that girl. I rested on the chance that she might actually be one of his best girls to have fun with.
“Friends-ish with benefits?” Chloe asked.
“Most definitely,” I agreed.
I was tired after a long day of shopping, bumping into Daniel alone took a lot out of me, and not in a good way. I could barely open my eyes and ended up crashing on the bed right after dinner.
Unfortunately, I hadn’t set my alarm for the next day so I ended up being late for my first class. When I entered the room I felt a huge pang of shame as everyone stared me down. Of course, my cheeks went bright red and my body heated way up. I tried to make myself inconspicuous for the rest of the lesson. The day went pretty fast, considering it was the first day for every class, so I didn’t feel like much was weighing down on me.
While I was walking out of campus to go home, I nudged into someone who grabbed my arm. I looked up to find Sandy looking at me with that smile of hers.
“Hi,” she said. “Funny running into you like this.”
I know it’s not her fault, and she doesn’t know that it annoys me, but my God her teeny-bopper voice will be the death of me!
“Hey,” I said, managing a smile. “How are you?”
Like I care. Why did I ask?
“Oh, not too bad. I’m going out with Daniel again on Friday night so, should be fun.”
Suddenly I was curious. “So you guys are like a thing?”
She shrugged and smiled a hopeful smile. “I don’t know. I hope it could lead to something.”
Oh, poor girl. She doesn’t know he just plays.
“I mean,” she continued, “I know he’s got a frisky reputation with girls, but maybe I’ll be different.”
Okay, my sympathy for her just retracted into non-existence.
All I could do was nod and smile like a bobble head. “Well, good luck with that then.”
We said our goodbyes and went our separate ways. Am I the only one who sees nothing in Daniel? Whatever, to me he’s just a work buddy. That’s all. I needed to focus on more important things, like school. Plus, my date with Mark is coming up soon, and I’m going to go all out. Considering I only have a morning class on Friday, Chloe and I are going to get a wax right before I work and then we’re going to go shopping for some first date lacy lingerie. Hey, you never know, and you always got to be prepared for whatever comes your way!