She looked up from her book as she heard a person calling , “miss, do you need this chair?” Her eyes needed a few seconds to readjust and she couldn’t find her voice fast enough so she nodded. “Thank you,” he said with a quick smile. He was a handsome man. She looked at him walking towards his group of friends and tried to figure him out. What was a person like him doing in a cafe like this at this time?
It was barely 8 a.m. and Beth was used to taking her coffee in the cafe situated at the corner of her flat. She liked the view and the airiness of the place, in addition to the hospitality of the middle aged owner and her daughter. It was usually a quiet place, a place where people would walk in, grab a coffee and a bite to go, and leave. The two tables that were set for dine in guests were seldom busy and it was very odd that this morning the second chair on her table was needed to accommodate a group of four men.
She tried to resume her reading but felt like someone was watching her. She looked up and she was right: he was watching her from a few feet away and smiled. She smiled back and unconsciously rubbed her left hand before looking back down at her book blushing.
The words were getting fuzzy, she closed her eyes for a few seconds and tried to refocus. This was her sanctuary and she wasn’t going to allow anything or anyone to ruin it for her. She took a sip of her latte and glanced up. He had a cup in his hand and nodded in her direction. This is ridiculous, she thought to herself. He’s just being friendly.
She managed to believe herself and went back to reading. Time passed by and she could hear the group saying their farewells. She looked up and saw that he was putting on his suit jacket. Probably off to work, she thought to herself.
In her mind, she imagined him seated behind a big desk with his grey hair glistening in the sunlight behind him. His forearms bulging beneath his black suit as he walks across to welcome her into his lair. Towering over her, she smiles coyly as he puts his arms around her and ushers her in.
“Thank you,” he says pulling her away from her fantasy. “I read that book, it’s good,” he remarks. “How are you liking it so far?”
“I’m enjoying it very much.” She whispers.
“mind if I join you? I don’t need to be at work till after lunch.” He asks
She looked at him quietly and sighs, recalling the heartbreak that is yet to heal and the pain her ex-husband caused her.
“I’m sorry, I’m fully booked for this year with myself. Maybe next year we can catch up.”