They’d begun to spend a lot of time with each other. They’d had several good dates. The chemistry was there. Sure, he was a bit mysterious and aloof at times, but she liked that. He wasn’t exactly her type, but he was nice and he treated her well.
So when he offered to drive her home after a late night with too much wine, she didn’t feel awkward or unsafe when she said, “I would like that.”
The drive home was filled with laughter. It seemed like they were becoming good friends and that was new to her. New but nice. If nothing else, she hoped that they could remain friends.
He helped her in the house with one hand on the small of her back and she wasn’t sure if it was the wine or his hand but suddenly she felt light-headed. She exhaled.
He stopped her just inside the door. The longing in his eyes told her he wanted to stay but his mouth said, “I’m gonna go now. Thanks for a wonderful evening.” He leaned in for a peck. She lingered and he pulled her closer parting his lips. Hints of his drink of choice mixed with hers to further intoxicate her and suddenly she couldn’t breathe. Her feet barely touched the ground as they waltzed through her condo. Clothes decorated their path from the hallway to her bedroom; moans became the soundtrack to their night and she was pretty sure the neighbors now knew his name.
Later, after he had fallen asleep, she lay in bed listening to the sounds of his breathing. A million thoughts ran through her mind. What did this mean? Were they a couple or just a couple of people who liked spending time together? Was she the only one he was seeing or just another woman he spent a night with? When was the last time he spent the night with anyone? Was he ready to move their relationship to the next level? Was she ready to move to the next level? How did she feel about him? Could she really see herself with him long term? Was she even ready for anything long term? Long term… The words echoed in her head. They hadn’t discussed the future before. They hadn’t really discussed the past either but she felt more familiar with where he’d been than where he was going. And she had no idea if he wanted her to go with him.
He began to stir next to her and she turned over to check on him. He smiled and leaned in for a kiss. “You ok?”
She smiled, but the gesture seemed unnecessary. She watched as he dressed, confused by his hastiness. Surely, he didn’t have anywhere to be at this hour. She wanted to ask him what his hurry was but she would have to choose her words carefully so that he didn’t interpret her curiosity as an interrogation. She wanted him to feel relieved that she wanted him to stay and enjoy eggs and toast in a couple of hours, but she wasn’t sure if he would see that as more than just a kind gesture. She wanted to be able to tell him that she was fine, that she was not reading anything into the situation but that this wasn’t something that happened on regular occasions. She wanted to tell him that their tryst was not causing her any discomfort so he didn’t think she was one of those women who got too attached too soon. But instead, all she did was smile.
And, he smiled back and headed for the door.
“So what now?” she asked with expectant eyes.
“I’m going home. I’ll call you later,” he said casually and walked out the door.
The sweat was barely dry on her forehead and he was already in his car travelling back to his life, leaving her to make sense of hers.