Rohan is waiting for a blind date on Valentine's Day not knowing what to expect, when Miriam arrives. One impromptu art tour around Ottawa's Byward Market, and a dance with a playful bear later, their lives are forever changed, on the most romantic night of the year.
This story was contributed by MustangSabby
Her hair was like water at the bottom of a waterfall. Almost white, tumbling around her shoulders, as if swirling and dancing away from the cliffside.
She hadn't spotted him yet, looking around the coffee shop. She stood on her tip-toes to see over the heads of all the lovers, their bodies leaned towards each other, quiet conversations and smiles filling the space with emotions.
At that precise moment, as he watched her, he was doubting his agreement to a blind date on Valentine's Day. His nerves pinged, the idea that such a beautiful woman was here to meet him.
She turned in place, and he held his breath as her eyes caught his. They were a myriad of greens, like the inside of a pearl oyster shell. His mouth went dry as she smiled and they sparkled with mischief.
She wound her way towards him in the crowded shop, and when she reached him, lemongrass and citrus lifted over him in a wave. As she held his eyes, the draw to her was absolute.
She was an iridescent siren, and he the bewitched sailor.
"Hi, you must be Rohan?" she asked, her voice poised and throaty, at odds with her light, elfin features.
"Hi. Yes, ummm, yes, I am. Miriam?" he responded, stuttering as she extended her hand.
She smiled even further, a broad, enticing smile that pulled at him. He couldn't help but smile back, hoping his nerves wouldn't show, and as he took her hand to shake it, he wondered how on earth this vision could exist in the same reality as him.
"That's me! Listen, I know we were meeting here for coffee, but it is really crowded and I have an idea," she shot out, and before he could let go of her hand, she turned and towed him out of the coffee shop, and into the street. He let her lead, the energy pouring out of her impossible to resist, akin to asking the tide not to come in.
A swirl of snow was in the air, the sidewalks wet with the first flakes. The air felt festive, damp with the promise of a mild evening. As he buttoned up his coat, she let go of his hand to draw bright blue gloves onto her hands.
"I like your gloves," he managed, searching for something to say, coming up short, and blurting out the first thing that darted into his head.
She giggled, extending her hands out, wiggling the fingers. "They're my favourite colour. What is your favourite colour, Rohan?"
Rohan couldn't even formulate a response. If he were honest, he'd never had a favourite of anything, or everything was his favourite. He was at a loss to decide, in front of her. Maybe right now his favourite was whatever hers was, because the enthusiasm in her voice was enough to sway anyone to her side.
"I don't really know," he replied lamely, feeling entirely inadequate next to her. She was a shining star, and he the desolate moon in her orbit, basking in the glow.
She let out a peal of laughter and picked up his hand again. "You're a funny man, Rohan. Of course you have a favourite. Let's decide what it is this evening. Now let's go!"
They walked, their boots crunching on the salt scattered across the concrete a normal sound that he concentrated on to calm his racing heart. She interlaced her hand with his. It was entirely intimate, and he looked down between them, seeing her blue fingers peeking out between his long, brown ones, her warmth entering him and breaking some sort of invisible barrier. When was the last time he had held hands with a woman?
YOU ARE READING
Lucky In Love? A Valentine AnthologyGeneral Fiction
Love comes in all forms, and the short story collection from some of our Paid Stories writers covers the full range of what love means. There are new starts, love gone wrong, love lost and everything in between. We'll have new stories added daily...