I set Sarena down with regret, so I could hug my mother. She kissed both cheeks, pinching them afterwards. I always hated that. I don’t have a fat face, so pinching tends to not feel good.
“Look at you! So handsome! So grown up! Chester, my oldest boy, Michael. Mikey, this is Chester, my fiancé.” She looked up at me shyly, smiling.
Chester stepped forward, taking my hand. Ma is short, maybe five feet and a sneeze. Chester was about five inches taller, making him a lot shorter than me. I took his hand, shaking it politely. He had a hell of a grip and was a wiry built man, stronger than I expected. I didn’t try to do the death grip on him, just gave him as good as he gave me.
“Nice to meet you, Chester. Welcome to Cheyenne.”
“This is my daughter, Sarena, but I guess you’ve met already.”
“Yeah. Looks that way.”
Her father looked puzzled, glancing between us.
“Ma, it’s chilly out. You should get your coat. We have to walk across the parking lot to the restaurant. Chester, I checked, they do kosher.”
“Oh, excellent. Thanks, Michael.”
“I’ll grab my coat,” Sarena said, tugging my hand. “Mike, help me find where I left my key-card.”
I followed her into her room.
“Our folks don’t know how close we’ve gotten the last few days,” she said. “I wanted them to feel like they brought us together. It’s like all your mother has talked about for the last hundred miles or so. She really hopes we’ll hit it off.”
“I’m kinda hoping the same thing myself.” I took her hands, drawing her to me.
I wanted to kiss her badly. I knew exactly how she would taste and feel—just like the woman in my dream. The moment I laid eyes on her picture, I knew she was the one I dreamed about that day. That was such a vivid dream, with taste, scent and touch. . . . It made me hot just to think about it. Okay, face it, just being around Sarena made me hot. I was about to kiss her, when there was a tapping at the door.
Sarena grabbed her things, including the key which was right by her purse, and we headed out. She held my hand excitedly, like a little kid. I led the way to the restaurant, asking about their trip. Ma told me in great detail how lovely the trip had been. Sarena looked ready to laugh any second, so I changed the subject to the concert. I talked about meeting Ms. Learner.
“In that uniform she can tell you have a good build?” My mother is fluffy, but not entirely dumb.
“Yeah, well, the jacket is pretty form fitting, Ma. I guess she saw something she liked.”
Sarena pinched me. I had told her all about the Big Mike fiasco. She thought it was hysterical.
“You should call her about that modeling. It could bring in some good money,” she encouraged. “And I’ll come watch,” she said as our parents got up to go to the salad bar.
“You can get a free show anytime you want,” I told her. “I’ll even show you the nudes.”
“You didn’t send those out?”
“Oh, no! Just one of them without my shirt. You know, ratty jeans, tool belt. . . .”
“Tell me it was pulling the jeans down almost far enough to see. . . . Leaving that tantalizing trail. . . .” She stopped talking suddenly because our folks were almost to the table.
“Yes,” I said, taking her hand to my lips. “That’s exactly right. Salad?” I tugged her hand, dragging her to the salad bar. “You’re killing me, Serena. I want you so bad right now.”
“Do you think you’ve got an exclusive on that? Cause I can’t tell you how long it’s been since I had anything that wasn’t battery operated and covered in latex.”
I dropped the salad tongs, my fingers suddenly numb. “Oh, God, don’t keep talking like that around the salad bar!”
“What, there’s a new law? Talking dirty taints the food?”
“You’ll make me drool on it.”
She was still laughing when we headed back to the table.
“Is there any way we can escape and head to my place?” I whispered.
“I don’t know. We’ll think of something.”
“I sure as hell hope so, baby, cause otherwise I’m going to explode.”
“Ditto. . . .”
© Dellani Oakes 2014