“You’re not like anyone I’ve ever met,” he said.
“No one is like anyone you’ve ever met.”
“You know what I mean.”
“I do. And you’re afraid of me.”
“I’m not afraid of you. I’m…afraid of me.”
“Because this whole thing goes agains everything I’ve ever known, believed, or even thought about and I’m wounded. It makes me feel as if…I’m not in control. I don’t understand how I feel and I’m not sure what’s going on.”
“Maybe it’s time you learned new things and saw things differently. And I know a secrete that I’ll tell you, if you promise not to tell anyone else.”
“I promise,” he said, immediately.
“No one’s in control,” she whispered.
He stared at her for a few moments. “Is that one more thing that I’ll have to get used to?”
“Probably. It’s up to you. Everything is up to you.”
“Why doesn’t it feel that way?”
“Because you have to break through your conditioning.”
He looked straight ahead for a few minutes then said, “You’re right. The things I’ve been taught to believe are telling me that you’re dangerous, too fast, too much, too…chaotic and…out of control. You are too far from the norm. You are too free spirited to fit into the mold society has cast for you, therefore, I don’t know how to think about you! I can’t believe I didn’t SEE that before,” he said, in amazement. “I was…”
“Blind and brainwashed, like a good little boy?”
“YES!” he said loudly. “You would scare anyone, because of what we all believe is acceptable. Can we just get my dog, some of my things, and go back to your place?”
“Is that what you really want?”
“Pull over,” he said.
“I’m going a hundred and ten, on a crowded expressway,” she said, glancing at him.
“WAY TO GO ALEX,” she shouted, as she whipped the car across three lanes of traffic, to the shoulder. The second the car came to a halt, amid a ton of dust suddenly floating around it, he grabbed her and pulled her over the cup holders, toward him.
“I can’t even begin to tell you how much this hurts,” he moaned. “But…I absolutely have to kiss you right NOW, or I think I might die.”
“When he finally pulled away, he panted a few times, held his ribs, groaned, made sad little ow noises and said, “I am NOT going to miss this OPPORTUNITY! Let’s get my dog and go home. I don’t care if you ever even tell me your name.”
“It’s Misty,” she said.
“I am absolutely crazy about you.”
“Took you long enough,” she snarked, pulling out in front of a car going ninety.
“In my defense,” he said. “It’s only been twenty-four hours and I was asleep for then of them. And that, by the way, was supposed to have been one of those special moments.”
She turned toward him. “Stick with me and you’ll have more special moments than you’ll know what to do with.”
“Do you think my ribs will be healed by the time we get back to your place, or do you think I can take enough pain pills so that I won’t care?” Her laugher filled the car and he said, “Try not to kill us before I’m better, okay?”
“My dog’s name is Carl.”
“My cat’s name is Sassy and she will boss him round the minute he steps a paw in the place.”
“How can I love you this much already?”
“Life’s like that sometimes.”
“Am I in a coma, still in the hospital, dreaming this is happening?”
She pinched him.
“Does that answer your question?” she asked.
“YES, thank you,” he said, rubbing his arm. “Once my ribs heal, I won’t be so easy to catch, you know.”
She glanced at him, her eyes half closed and said, very softly, “I can hardly wait.”