“Lord, I hate these things,” Marissa says to herself pulling her skirt down as she walked out of the elevator. Her friend Yvonne invited her to a gathering to mingle with her service industry friends and she was nervous. Marissa is a shy, smart and beautiful woman who has worked herself up to being the highest paid Nurse Practitioner in her hospital. She had to get up early in the morning to work out before her shift in Pediatrics, but for her best friend, she would do anything and be anywhere. She began to rethink the length of her skirt but obviously that squat challenge was working and that sent a smile to her face.
Yvonne’s place is a gorgeous loft with a breathtaking view of Downtown Austin. Although, they never talked about money, Marissa figured her restaurant must be doing well. It didn’t bother her that they’ve never discussed it because no one knew as much as she did that people knowing you have money to spare makes relationships so much harder. Marissa never disclosed her trust fund to anyone, under any circumstances, so she knew where Yvonne would be coming from.
“Heeeeey! You look amazing,” Yvonne said as she opened the door. She was wearing a black lace top with a white bra you could clearly see underneath with freshly starched white shorts and a pair of wedges that would make any fashionista jealous. She could dress like this; she had the body to do so. Her beautiful brown eyes sparkled as they hugged and kissed on the cheeks. Yvonne took Marissa’s purse and said she would go run and put it in her bedroom, seemingly reading her mind as she knew Marissa didn’t like carrying her heavy ass purse around.
To immediately subdue her social anxiety, Marissa went straight for the wine nodding at everyone and smiling, she reached the kitchen and found a Chardonnay that would do the trick.
Jonathan couldn’t help but train his eyes on the thick thighs in the sparkles that just walked in the room. He had never seen someone that moved like she did and he was immediately drawn to her in every way. The way her shiny, curly hair moved with her, it was obvious that she was in shape but still would be soft to hold. He could tell she was a natural beauty because she wasn’t wearing all that stuff women like to cake on their faces. Most of all, that tight smile she was giving everyone, obviously not wanting to start up any conversations, was so damn cute and he wanted to know what was on her mind.
He quickly downed his Scotch, so he would have an excuse to be in the same room with her and bee lined for the kitchen.
“That’s a really sparkly dress,” Jonathan chuckled and poured Scotch into his glass.
“It’s a skirt, thank you very much,” she said as she rolled her eyes and continued to struggle to open the wine.
“Here, let me help you.”
“Thanks.” Marissa sighed, feeling relief that she would get to the wine quicker.
“Nervous?” he asked with his thick eyebrow raised and popping the cork on the Chardonnay. Marissa looked up and that’s when she noticed his hazel eyes, his smooth mocha skin, and the dimple that disappeared and reappeared, she immediately felt that feeling in her stomach. Nervous as hell and wishing she wasn’t such a shy person. She wasn’t a stranger to being hit on by any means but when someone knocks your breath away, you take notice and those eyes and those dimples in a suit with cologne coming off of him, made her notice.
“I’m okay, I just don’t like gatherings. I feel like I have to put on a show when I’d rather be curled up in my pajamas and watching The Walking Dead for the fourth time. I would like some wine and too much cheese then to fall asleep and dream about kicking some Zombie ass.” she surprised herself with her translucent response and not a drop of wine in her system yet.
Jonathan laughed at her candidness and handed her a glass of wine.
“Heavy pour of Chardonnay for the gorgeous lady, so she doesn’t run away from me and into the arms of the zombies,” he winked.
“Marissa, my name is Marissa,” she said with a chuckle and toasted his glass of Scotch.
“Is everyone making themselves at home?” Yvonne appeared around the corner, smiling from ear to ear when she saw Marissa and Jonathan toasting each other. So, glad to see her best friend not in the corner hooking herself up to an IV full of wine to calm her nerves.
Jonathan spoke first, “We are definitely feeling welcomed. You have such a nice home Von and the spread isn’t too bad.” He motioned to the numerous liquor bottles on the counter, along with finger foods and mixers, mini desserts and her best crystals.
“Why thank you Jonathan, I’m going to go turn on some music, make Marissa have fun.” Yvonne smiled and waltzed off, knowing exactly what she just did.
“So, tell me more about these zombies you like so much better than people.” Jonathan turned to his now only interest in the room.
“It’s not the zombies I like,” Marissa said, finding it hard to keep eye contact with him, “it’s the characters, the storyline, if you haven’t watched the show; I don’t know what you’ve been doing with your life. I bet you watch ESPN 24-7.”
“Maybe you could get me to stop watching ESPN,” Jonathan said hopefully.
“That was corny. Try again.” She was hoping he really would try again.
“Okay.” He thought for a moment what would get this woman to find him half as interesting as he found her, staring at her while she looked off to the side and sipped her wine, he had an idea. He really only knew two things about her, her favorite show and she was incredibly shy.
He didn’t want to say the wrong thing or just force himself on her, so Jonathan suggested that he would watch all the seasons on his own and then they could meet up for lunch or dinner and discuss everything she loved about the show. They could analyze characters together, plot twists, whose deaths they were sad about and those they were happy about. He figured a stimulating conversation would definitely intrigue her into getting to know him better.
Marissa found the idea very interesting and accepted his invitation to something that probably wouldn’t happen for a month. She was willing to wait.