s*t*a*r*s 5 - pt 75

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            “We should talk,” says Jayden as she and Natalie are being seated at small café in West Hollywood called Atmosphere. 

            Natalie’s eyes narrow.  This isn’t good.  If Jayden backs out of teaching at HIA she’s going to cry for more than one reason.  She likes having Jayden around she reminds Natalie of who she is. 

            Jayden takes a deep breath and the waitress comes around to get their drink order.  Natalie orders coffee and Jayden a milkshake.  Once the waitress is out of earshot Jayden folds her hand in front of her and says, “Listen, I know I told you that I have a crush on you and since then you’ve been looking at me weird and being uncomfortable around me.  I know there is like thirteen years between us and I have a lot of things to learn…”

            “You?  You have to learn?” blurts out Natalie. She rubs a rough hand over her dark blue eyes.  “I’ve never even been on a real date, Jay.”  The admission makes her blush, she feel the heated blood rise to her cheeks. 

            “I can say I’ve been on a date,” says Jayden with a half smile.  She lets her deep olive colored eyes wash over Natalie for just an instant.  “Not with a girl. Here is the thing, I see how Spencer and Rylee are stumbling around their relationship and that’s not my thing.  They have so much to figure out with their powers and their lives.  I propose that we stay friends while we explore other relationships.  That we keep an open mind to life and enjoy it.”

            Natalie eases back into the chair.  Is this Jayden’s version of having an open relationship?  Jo and Amy had tried that once and it had backfired on them both. 

            “I don’t want to sleep with you,” says Jayden looking over the menu nonchalantly. 

            Natalie feels the blush rise to her cheeks again.  Jayden isn’t attracted to her?  She’s confused.  “You don’t?”

            Jayden smiles.  “Not now.  Maybe someday, after we’ve lived a little bit.  Face it Nat you don’t leave that island.  If I’m with you I want to leave that island sometimes.  So, you need to start doing that before I date you, or sleep with you.”

            Natalie takes a long breath and is about to protest, then she thinks, this is true.  For years she’s been to intent on building a nice base of operations for the girls and now that they are there, they are learning but not every minute can be devoted to them, can it?

            Jayden blinks and looks up at Natalie.  “I want a chance but not until you have a life.  I don’t want to be the one you start something with, I want to be the one that you have something that lasts.  First hardly ever last forever, first loves, first dates, first jobs.”

            Natalie’s jaw drops open into an O and Jayden laughs.  Nat contemplates this, biting her lip and pretending to look at the menu. The waitress comes over and they both order, Jayden a burger with everything on it and Natalie a salad. 

            “Okay,” whispers Natalie.


            “You’re right.  And I have to admit that I’m attracted to you,” she says quickly.  She has to say it quickly because she’s just admitted to herself and she’s letting it out to the world, which consists of Jayden.  “I’ve never looked at a girl, no, at a woman like I look at you.”

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