Archive for June 25th, 2008

25
Jun
08

Foodie, Chapter 6

written by Backpacking Dad

On the drive back to “their” place that evening Malorie decided to send out some feelers. She was still a little embarrassed about the night before, and confused about whether or not she had actually been kissing Evan. It may have been a dream.

But if it was a dream, then why the drastic reaction to Celine “I Look Pretty Covered in Flour” Richelieu? Malorie recognized that she had grown a little attached and possessive of her partner and roommate. But if she had only dreamed the very vivid tongue-dancing episode then her opinion of Celine and her easy laughter with Evan was a little bit in the crazy end of the pool. Surely her friend could strike up friendships with whomever he liked. Even if she wished to be something more than a friend, if last night was all a dream then she had no reason to turn bitter.

But if it wasn’t a dream then they had already moved into a relationship that Celine “I Can Tell I’m Better Than You By the Way You Dress” Richelieu would be well-advised to steer clear of.

But if that’s where they were then why was Evan so clearly comfortable and excited about working side-by-side with Celine “You Couldn’t Fit Into These Pants” Richelieu? Maybe he wasn’t all that interested in making a deep connection with Malorie, no matter how strongly she felt he was. Despite their great friendship she may have been mis-reading him all along.

So many ‘buts’.

So, she decided that once she had him alone, in her car (where he couldn’t run away), she would gently prod the situation to see what came oozing out.

“I was so disappointed with my éclairs today. I don’t know what was wrong with me. I blame Tom.” She smiled over at Evan in the passenger seat.

Evan brought his attention back to interior of the vehicle from wherever it had been for the past few minutes. “I’m sorry, what was that?”

“I said that I wasn’t happy with my éclairs. Yours came out much better.”

“Oh, yeah. Well, I guess today was my day to be really ‘on’, you know?”

“I think you had more help too. Tom was a little ham-handed.”

“Was that his name? He was probably just nervous about switching partners.”

“Celine seemed to know what she was doing. And she looked really great the entire time. I can’t believe her hair stayed in place so well; mine was getting really ragged by the end. She’s really pretty.”

“Ok, you can stop now.” He looked up from his lap and held her gaze for a few seconds. “I get it. Celine and I were having a fun time while we were working today. You were having a miserable time. You think she is prettier than you are and you think I’m interested in her because she looks fabulous and knows how to cook really well already.”

Malorie was stunned. Evan seemed to be genuinely upset. Gone was his distracted look, and she hadn’t seen a smile on his face since he said goodbye to Celine after class. Now his face looked stern and tired.

“What are you talking about?” she blurted, before she could say what she was actually thinking: Damn. Too right.

“Look, Malorie. I like you, a lot. I think we’ve become really good friends, and I really do appreciate you helping me by staying with me. But…”

Malorie didn’t let him finish. They had arrived home and she needed to be out of his sight, and for him to be out of hers. So as she pulled into the driveway she jerked the parking brake up and threw open her door.

She forgot about her seat belt, of course, so as she leaped out of her chair she was quickly returned to it.

Too embarrassed to move she closed her eyes and took a deep breath. She could feel Evan’s eyes on her, and she imagined him sitting there with his mouth agape at her antics.

“I know. ‘But we aren’t anything except friends and I’m acting a little crazy about you and Celine and I really have no right to be in your business about it and maybe I should move out.’ Right?”

She opened her eyes and looked over at Evan. And instead of the shock and disappointment she expected to see he was stifling a laugh. His eyes were shining at her, and hints of crow’s feet played at the corners of his eyes.

“What?” She demanded. “Let me in on the joke.”

“I was going to say….but you’re crazy if you think that I’m going to be at all interested in anyone else the day after I spend the better part of a night kissing you. And really? You are acting a bit crazy. But that’s okay. I can handle all of your crazy.”

A slow, disbelieving smile started on the left side of Malorie’s mouth. Eventually it was mimicked by the right side. “I thought that was a dream.”

He touched the side of her face with the back of his fingers. “I’m glad it was so memorable.”

“No, that’s not what I meant,” she stammered.

“I know. Will you do me a favor?”

“Sure?”

“Will you go in and see what Monterey Jack is doing?”

“Jack? Why?”

“Because I think I need him to stay out of my room tonight.”

“Hey now! Moving a little quickly aren’t you? I’m not sure I’m over you saying that Celine looks fabulous.”

“Just go lock the cat in the closet or something and I promise I’ll make it up to you.”




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