Emotional fear

Gigi turned in her apartment doorway and looked at Bill, Alex's brother. She smiled what hoped to be a 'well-thanks-for-everything-but-I'll-never-see-you-again' smile. But the smile quickly faded when he stepped forward. Inwardly, she groaned.

He just didn't get it. He just didn't get that she hadn't really wanted to go out with him. He just didn't understand that she had only said yes to his date proposal because she needed something, anything, to take her mind off of Alex's bitter and cold rejection.

He just didn't get it.

And it wasn't like she was trying to use him. She had just needed a way to forget everything, a way to escape. Everything was spiraling out of control, and Gigi needed something sturdy to cling onto throughout this… this tornado of feelings and setbacks.

But even this, she could tell that this wasn't going to work. She had noticed that right away when she first laid eyes on them.

They had planned to meet at a bar. ALEX'S bar, to be exact. Gigi had protested of course, smoothly lying and saying that she preferred another bar over that one. But Bill had insisted, saying that Alex could get them discounts on food and drinks.

So Gigi stored two thoughts in her head.

He's cheap and

He relies on others too much

So Gigi made sure that Alex would be on break when they went, causing the two to have a rushed date of only 40 minutes before they hailed a cab and went back to her apartment. And even in that time, she didn't feel a spark.

A spark. Wasn't that the stupid inspiration she had used to convince herself that Alex liked her? Gigi felt a pang in her heart as she remembered Alex's statement.

Guys invented the "spark" so that they could not call, and treat you kind of bad, and keep you guessing, and they convince you that that anxiety and that fear that they're throwing at you is actually, just a "spark"

Gigi tried not to cry as Bill carried a conversation on with himself as they walked down her building's hallway. But she kept hearing Alex's voice no matter what she did to tune it out.

And you guys all buy it

Gigi tried to listen to Bill.

You eat it up

Gigi tried to tap a song with her feet as she walked.

And you love it

Gigi hummed the song 'Release Me' by Agnes at an extremely quiet volume.

You love it because you feed off that drama

Gigi tried to erase her mind, wiping everything she knew off of it.

You all love that drama

Gigi abruptly turned and faced Bill. It was convenient that they were at her doorway already.

So this was how Gigi ended up at her door with a guy she didn't like leaning in to her.

Gigi wrapped her arms around Bill. She hoped that he would get the hint and back off.

And that was when she felt it. She felt Bill lose his tense feeling and practically lean on her small form.

And she knew. She knew he knew that their relationship wasn't going to work. Heck, she knew he knew that it wasn't going to work out during the date. And Gigi felt terrible when she realized that she wasn't the only one that love seemed to hate. So Gigi hugged him as tight as she could before they let go of each other. With a nod and a sympathetic smile, Gigi closed the door and leaned against it.

It wasn't even five minutes later when there was a knock on her door. She sighed, thinking that it was Bill needing a comforting shoulder, when she pasted a smile on her face and opened it.

"Forget something?" Gigi asked playfully. Then she froze when she saw who was standing there.

"Yeah, I did." And Alex held up something about eight inches long.

It was a pen. Gigi tried to keep a poker face to mask her surprise.

"You came all the way here at 11:00 at night to bring me back a promotional pen?" she asked, mocking him with a steely edge. Gigi saw something flash in his eyes that she didn't recognize.

"Yeah. I thought I should just come up with some really great excuse to get over here. That's how it's done, isn't it?"

"Sometimes." Alex continued.

"Look, I can't stop thinking about you. It's a problem. I drive by your place, I call and hang up. I'm turning into..."

"Me." Gigi finished. Alex winced.

"Yeah." Then Gigi remembered something Alex had said to her.

"A wise person once told me...that if a guy wants to be with a girl… he will make it happen, no matter what." Gigi arched an eyebrow and stepped a teeny half step closer.

"That's true." Alex nodded. Gigi continued.

But when I was hurling my body onto yours...you did not seem to want to make it happen." Alex looked at the ground.

"Yeah, all right. Here's the thing about that: You were right. I've gotten so used to keeping myself at a safe distance from all these women... and having the power...that I didn't know what it felt like...when I actually fell...for one of them. I didn't know." Gigi stared at Alex. Was he serious? She needed to make sure.

"Look, I just went out with your friend Bill and..." she started to say.


"He might be just exactly what I need. No drama. He calls, he does what he says." Gigi spoke slowly, to make sure that the message got clear and through to Alex.

" I can do that stuff too." It was a quick defense. Gigi let her arms go to her side, showing Alex what he had done to her.

He had worn her down, crushed all her hope.

"But you didn't. And that same wise person told me that I am the rule. That I have to stop thinking that every guy will change. That I have to stop thinking that... I'm the exception." And then, when it seemed like nothing could fix this, Alex stepped closer to her.

"You are my exception." And then he leaned in.

Gigi didn't know what to do. She wanted to kiss him, but she was still reeling from his rejection. It confused her and left her just standing there, dazed.

But Alex seemed to understand.

And that was why he leaned in first.

At first, the kiss was slow. Begrudgingly slow, I might add. But that was the amount of time it took for Gigi's walls to come down. Yes, her walls crumpled to the bottom of her heart, despite her knew reinforcements of doubt.

And Alex's walls fell too. His walls were a bit different though. His walls were like a castle with a drawbridge. But Gigi had come in and yanked on that drawbridge so hard that it had it had fallen down, ready to let her and her many complicated feelings in.

And then the kiss changed. It morphed rather than just abruptly changed. And as it morphed, the kiss became deeper and more loving.

So the kiss proved something. It proved that a boy could like a girl. It proved that a girl could like a guy back. But it also proved both their thoughts of love wrong.

And they were afraid. So deeply afraid.

But maybe… Just maybe… they were too deeply in love to let that stop them.