Penny opened the door happy and relaxed, after that little game of asking:Who do we love? among those three knocks of Sheldon to her door. After all this time, she always knew how to deal with her friend's ritual in a funny way.
"Hello, Sheldon". She said with a smile. "Come on, in".
"Thank you". He replied graciously. He seemed relaxed and very comfortable visiting his friend.
"What's up?" Her voice pitched a little bit at the end, one more sign that showed how happy she felt today.
" I came to ask if you would like to go on a date with me".
He said that very casual, as if instead of that he had said: We're out of tea. For that reason, Penny thought she did not hear him well, so, she asked:
"A date. You and me".- Once that was said, Sheldon proceeded to walk towards her in a strange way. It was like if he were trying to seduce her- "Dining, dancing... Perhaps you would like to... Taking a price fight".
And suddenly, Penny understood what it was going on. And she felt kind of hurt. Even Sheldon, her truly friend, the most inocent person she ever knew, now wanted to use her. To what end? To make Amy jealous. Maybe his mother were right: He could be a brainiac, but at the end, he is just like the rest of men.
However, for some reason, she didn't want to fight with him. She just asked with tired voice:
"God, are you trying to make Amy jealous?"
"No! Why is everyone so obsessed with Amy and Stuart?" He asked, surprised. "And whether or not they're having more pumking latte or intercourse tonight".
"Okay, listen to me: Playing games is not going to help to get Amy back". Penny clarified it while she was doing her stuff, but, at the same time, ready to listen to Sheldon's feelings. That was the way she was able to help her friends. Just like that.
"I'm not triying to get her back!" Sheldon protested. Then his voice turned out a little sad. "I just want not to lose her as a friend".
"And what the hell your friendship has to do with your concern about Amy dating Stuart?"
"Well, I guess she is the only friend who is more similar to me scientifically speaking. And then she started to hang out a lot with you and Bernadette, she spends a lot of time with you, forgetting about me most of the times. – While he was talking, he was walking around the apartment, as if he was talking to himself. -And now, if she starts dating Stuart, her brilliant mind is going to be wasted, we won't have nothing in common anymore, because she will have a busy life trying to socialize and our friendship will be over".
Penny felt sorry for Sheldon. He was now sitting on her couch, and he was really worried, almost scared. But he did not look at her, He wasn't looking at anything or anywhere in particular, just thinking in silence. Penny sat next to him and, not buying that I don't want to lose her as a friend story, she said:
"Alright. Honey, let me tell you a story: There was a guy I liked and I never told him how I felt. Eventually, he started going out with someone else, and I always regreted it." She looked at him, who was avoiding to look at her, but Penny thought it was because he was reflexing about the story. She concluded: "Do you see where I'm going with this?"
"I believe I do". He said in a low but sweet voice. "I'm the guy".
Penny seemed angry again while Sheldon looked at her, now concerned about her feelings more than his. She said, very serious:
"You're not the guy".
"Are you sure? That would explain so much!" Sheldon seemed unable to believe her, because he continued explaining her the reasons why he knew he was the guy: Her constant presence at his apartment, her on and off relationship with Leonard just to be near him... And what shocked her the most:
"The way you call me sweetie all the time".
He didn't say: You call me sweetie al the time, but the way you call me sweetie all the time. The way. What way? And what was more important: How could he, a person who was barely learning to recognize sarcasm, notice the way she called him like that? She didn't even know what he meant!
"I call everyone sweetie". – She said as if nothing worried her. Sheldon was not the kind of guy whom you could talk deeply about something that he could follow easily. For that reason, she said that and not something like: What do you mean with The Way?
"You tramp." He replied to her defense. But he didn't say it angry or as a mockery. That sounded to her more like a Don't kid yourself than like an insult. She was starting to feel uncomfortable, so she exhaled her breath as if she were cointaining her anger (altough, she wasn't sure if she was angry with Sheldon or with her own thinking) and brought the Amy topic back:
"Look, Sheldon: All I'm saying is strap on a pair and go talk to Amy".
- "Strap on a pair?" He asked as if he didn't understand. What was clearly an evidence to Penny when he went "Like what? Skates?"
Penny looked at him. The poor guy was a basket case in some aspects of life. It was clear that if he didn't understand what she was saying, he couldn't fix things with Amy. So she decided to do something about it:
"You know what? Let's go out, like you proposed. You need to make up your mind trying to forget what is troubling you. And I need to dinner properly" Said looking at whatever she was cooking, which now doesn't seem eatable at all. "But just to be clear: This is a date, but just as friends, do you understand?"
" Of course I do! That was my intention: To go out somewhere where my concern about Amy isn't questioned every time. And your boring adventures at the Cheesecake Factory will keep me far away from all that".
"Yeah, yeah, let's go. My stomach is making noises as if I had an alien inside of me".
"An alien?" Sheldon asked. "Uhm, maybe you're pregnant of Raj's baby. But to compare an indian with an alien could be a little racist, don't you think?"
"Sheldon, I'm not pregnant, I'm just hungry. Let's not talk about what happened between Raj and me, okay?"
"Okay". He replied. "No Raj, no Amy tonight. Just you and I, buddy".
"That's right, pal". She smiled. And really interested, she kept asking:
"So how is your work going?"
Penny knew his work was Sheldon's favourite topic, a good way of making him think in other thing. And somehow, she really missed all his jibber-jabber.
They spent a really good night. Going out with Sheldon wasn't at all like a few weeks ago, when she went out with Leonard. It was clear that she was trying to make him jealous and things were from bad to worse until the end of the night. But Sheldon was just her friend. Her truly friend.
"This was a great night!". Sheldon exclaimed during the way back home.
" I agree. I liked a lot the fact that you really wanted to go dancing."
"Well, you know I don't like to dance, but you had yo use that trick that Bernadette used the first day I went out with you and the girls.. Fortunately for you, I was in the mood for that".
"YAY I'm glad to hear that".
"Don't take that street, you have to take me to Amy's house". Sheldon said all of a sudden.
"Oh, wow, are you going to talk to her now?"
"Yes. I've been thinking, and I believe it's better that I talk to her and tell her that as long as she doesn't forget about our friendship, she could date anyone she wants".
"Good for you!" – Penny exclaimed happily. The main objective with that night out was reached. Who was the smartypants now? "I'm sure she is not going to forget about you. No one does it. Trust me".
"Do you see that? I'm so the guy". Sheldon said that, again, with no intention of beign funny. He simple said it.
"Okay, whatever". Penny said, stopping the car. "There, Amy's apartment. Do you want me to wait for you here?"
"No. I don't think she is at home yet, I'll wait for her inside. Besides, you're running out gasoline. I've had enough with that light on tonight".
"Yeah. This baby is hungry too. But I think he will have to wait until I get paid at the end of the week".
"Here". Sheldon said while he was searching his wallet. When he found it, he gave her some money. "I don't want to know that Leonard had to pick you up in some weird street tomorrow".
"Sheldon, don't worry, I'm fine. I have enough to get home".
"Perhaps, but tomorrow you won't find any human way to move this car and Leonard can't take you to work. There is a conference about the General Relativity Theory and we have to be at CalTech earlier than usual. So... Take this".
"Okay. Thank you, Sheldon".
"You're welcome. I appreciate a lot this date. You have found a solution to my concern, something that all my scientist friends couldn't do. Uhm... Maybe there is hope for you, despite not having studies. Well, good night".
And without any more word, he entered into Amy's apartment. Penny stayed there for a little more time with a smile on her face. Sometimes, Sheldon would be a total ass, but she was proud of him and proud of herself, because, once more, she could help him. She could help Sheldon Cooper, a brilliant mind who deep inside was just a guy. A good guy. Not the guy of the story, but... What if he was the guy of a new chapter in the book of her life?
" Oh, Penny... You better stop drinking". She said to herself in low voice, laughing a little and starting the car, which soon faded away into the night.