She'd be in town for two days. He knew he had to see her-knew it about as much as he knew he was getting married on Sunday. Knew how incredibly wrong it would be, they could never quite keep their hands off each other...damn, he didn't need to see her. But he was going to, in some way shape or form, he was going to.
She knew she'd probably see him. It was rare that she didn't when stopping through the city, but this time she was barely interested, at least that's what she told herself. She'd heard he was seeing somone, so was she, which had never stopped them in the past. She would stop it this time around. She remembered previous vows.
He was heading to a small jazz show at one of his favorite venues. A boy of his played the trumpet and he was supporting, but also, a lover of the genre, excited at a night up his alley; sans wedding plans, sans fiance, sans anything. Just chill time, the ultimate down time. Not even his boys to answer to really.
A friend had hooked her up with tickets to an intimate jazz show that night. She'd most likely review them when they headed to her city next, so seeing two sets made sense. She also loved jazz for other reasons and decided she'd stop through before heading out into the night with friends. It was warm, she opted for the cute black mini.
The concert hall was packed, the band was getting a great following. He was proud of his boy. Roomates back in college, he had suffered through hours of trumpet rehearsals, but the dude had followed his dream, go head. He thought about his days slaving away in finance. The dream killer. She'd always told him to go for it. Write a book, write a poem, write something! You have such a way with words. He pseudo did-a book of essays-all on how female jazz musicians brought him up, reared him even, when his mother had died of cancer when he was eleven. It sat in his desk, wound in a leather bounded journal, unpublished, hell untouched by eyes other than his own. Dreamkiller indeed. He found a seat and settled in.
Her friend was running uber late, she said she'd find seats, didn't want to miss the opening set. She wiggled through the crowd, happy for the great turn out, she sort of knew the trumpet player from college. She found her seat and sat down. A quick survey of the crowd, she pulled out her trusty iPhone and opened a new document for notes.
He saw her, she had no idea, but he'd seen her from the moment she walked in, maybe even felt it before his eyes found her. Was it possible she looked better every time he saw her? It had to be. She did. Her skin looked radiant, her legs looked toned and tanned, her curls hung loosely down her pack. He wanted a handful of her locks, wanted to yank them, caress them, get lost in them and never resurface-the set was starting. The set was starting and he was getting married on Sunday.
The music was solid, great actually. She'd gotten lost in the melody, loved the drummer and the vocalist who'd stepped in for a few songs. Her friend was still caught up, was sorry, would meet after for drinks. It was fine, she preferred seeing shows alone, no distractions. The soloist introduced the next song, said it was an old favorite of hers, an unknown arrangement, but still a goodie. The opening chords started and the air got caught in her throat. She felt her eyes water slightly. She remembered the first time she heard the song. He'd explained how everyone loved the more popular version, but how his mother gave this one a heavy rotation, how he remembered his mother asking him to play it when she could no longer handle the delicate record herself. It played through the concert hall identical to when it played in his apartment. She remembered how he'd hugged her tightly, didn't bother pretending he wasn't crying into her hair. She closed her eyes and listened. Moments later, her phone vibrated from her lap. She went to silence it, but saw who the message was from. DEFINITELY BETTER THAN THE OTHER VERSION. She looked around, could feel eyes bearing into her and there he was, a few rows behind and to the left of her, grinning like the cat that got the cream. Her phone vibrated again. SEAT TAKEN? She shook her head, he came down, hugged her, lingered in her hair, and told her she was radiant. He still had a way with words, blessing, curse. Why couldn't he just say, "You look nice." She sighed, knowing she wouldn't be able to abort this mission, knowing they were on a one way flight to a place they'd been but shouldn't revisit. It hadn't worked before, why would it this time?
He leaned in, nuzzled her neck, didn't care who saw. Didn't care at all, in fact. She was here, he was content, he was safe. "Let's get out of here," he whispered. She rose without being asked twice and they headed for the exit. "Wait, one second," she said as he watched her head off to the restroom. He thought once, thought twice, almost thought three times and headed in after her, locking the door behind him.
Blackie Collins is a Manhattan turned LA girl with a big heart and a closet full of girly things like skirts and heels. She loves laying on the beach, dogs with people names like Linda, hoop earrings, and sky-high platform heels. When she isn't writing, she can be found scouring blogs, brunching with friends, or enjoying happy hour at any hour of the day. Her true passion is boys. It is perhaps the reason she can't get anything done. She lives in a great, rent controlled apartment with a great, uncontrolled dog. She has quite a few parking tickets, and dreams of the day DVF or YSL decide to slum it with a line in Target. Get it in with her at http://thatbitchstolemyline.com, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow her on Twitter @blackiecollins.