‘A Moment’: short story by Jen Kent

I figure it’s now or never.  Three months ago she walked into my favorite coffee shop and has been here every Saturday since.  I know this because I stop in here every Saturday morning after my morning run.  After the first time I saw her I made it a point to always be here at the same time.  The first day that I saw her I was a sweaty mess, which normally wouldn’t bother me because, well I come in every week for my coffee fix, but this could not be my first impression.  I couldn’t shake this feeling that everything had to be perfect because this meeting could change everything.

She immediately intrigued me for a number of reasons; she comes and drinks tea in a coffee shop, she is always writing, and it’s always in a journal never on a laptop or tablet.  She always stays for exactly two hours and in that time she drinks two cups of tea and has a muffin.  Last week she switched things up and was reading a Romance novel and it didn’t look like one of those smutty erotic novels either.  And there’s no ring on her finger, I checked.  So when I got home I researched the author and found out she wrote true love stories about forever and yearning.  The kind not many people read anymore.  Then I tried to convince myself that I’m not a stalker.  I mean, I’m always looking for a great book to read.

I don’t know what it is but I feel drawn to her.  From the very first time I saw her I wanted to be her love story and I don’t even know her name.  Crazy.  But in the few times she actually smiled my way, and I’m not even sure she was smiling at me or at something going on in that beautiful head of hers, I imagined a montage of the life we could have together.  A little snippet.  Our own little moment in time that was like a preview of things to come.  An amazing wedding on the beach, three beautiful children, a little boy then twin girls, a house on a quiet street where the kids can learn to ride their bikes and I would even do the mini van thing.  I just keep waiting for our moment.

The fates seemed to align today because I got a prime spot right out front, to park my car, and I’m just waiting for her to come out so I can talk to her.  I watch through the window as she gets up and collects her belongings.  My heart does that crazy flip flop thing it usually does when I think our time together is about to end.  But hopefully it’s just the beginning today.  Just as she gets to the open doorway a kid whizzes by on his bike and as she jumps back out of his path she drops her bag and her things spill out onto the sidewalk.  Leaping forward from where I’m leaning on my car I rush over to her to help and she looks up and smiles at me.

“Thank you, Landon.” She says as she stands up.

“How do you…”

“I overheard you talking to one of the Baristas one day.” She says with a shy smile before I can finish my sentence. Taking her pens, that I am still holding, she adds, “I’m Emily.”

Looking at the book she’s holding I smile, silently thank God that I bought the right book and say, “You know what this is, Emily?”

“What?” She asks narrowing her beautiful brown eyes at me.

“This is our first moment.” I answer with a satisfied smile at the beautiful blush that creeps across her cheeks.  Yeah, I may have ran out and bought the last book I saw her reading and spent every spare second I had reading it for this exact instance.

All shyness seems to evaporate when she smiles at me this time and I get another one of those snippets.  “I like this moment.”

“Me too. What do you say we extend it and take a walk to get to know each other a little better?”

“Sounds perfect.” She says as she tucks a stray curl behind her ear.  After we stow her things in my car we cross the street to the causeway to take a walk along the beach.

We walk and talk for hours.  When she says she’s a little hungry we stop at a hot dog vendor to get something to eat, I insisted when she said she had never eaten off a food truck before.  This day is exactly like I imagined, as weird as that sounds.  We have so much in common and before we know it the sun is setting.  Taking her hand I lead her out onto the sand and we sit to watch the sun sink into the water.  In all my musings, up to this point, I never could have imagined anything as romantic.  As she settles back against my chest I get the feeling that our small moment in time is just the beginning of a lifetime of the memories we are going to make together.

To be continued….

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