"Two months," he says softly. "I noticed you two months ago and I've been watching you ever since."
We're sitting at the table in the far back. We're on the bench that's pressed up against the wall. And speaking of pressed, he is currently pressed right up against my side.
I sigh, relieved. Two months is a lot shorter than the length of time I've been watching Garrett. I'm happy he doesn't know that it's been that long.
"Does that make you uncomfortable?" he asks.
"The fact that I've been…I don't know…basically watching you?"
My laugh is loud and sudden, and as I lean forward, he puts his arm behind me.
"Yeah, like I'd have any room to judge you for doing that. I mean, seriously. That's like the creeper getting pissed for being creeped."
His laugh is warmer than my latte.
"Okay," he says, his arm wrapping around me fully. "Good."
It's odd how content this feels when everything I know about myself tells me I should be uncomfortable. Although I've never really wanted or even liked physical affection, I suddenly crave it with him. And what's more than that, he seems to really want it, too.
"So, why did you keep watching?"
I reach over and grab his free hand.
I don't even think about it.
"You really want to hear this?"
"What do you think?" I ask. "I mean, if you were me, and let's be honest, I think we've established that you basically are, wouldn't you want to know?"
His blush, it kills me just a little.
"More embarrassing than the Café Misto?" I giggle.
"Okay. More embarrassing than being distracted by your ass? Because that was pretty embarrassing. Besides, you told me you would answer all my questions if we moved."
He turns more toward me and I look up into his eyes. And this – this is so much better than watching anyone across the distance of a counter.
"I was here early one morning before class when I saw you. The line wasn't very long, but you were in the very back. I was in a hurry because I was running late, but something about you caught my attention. Maybe it was the way you didn't seem to be in a hurry like everyone else, but you shifted your feet from side to side like you were nervous. Or maybe it was the way your long brown hair was still a little damp and I could smell your shampoo…like green tea and honey.
"Whatever it was, all I knew was that I couldn't take my eyes off you. You ordered your drink and sat down at the table while I waited on mine. I still hadn't seen your face because you never really looked up. But then you did. It was just for a second, no time at all, really. But when you did, I finally saw you. And well…"
It's the most he's said to me at one time all day today. And I'm listening to him like he's reading a classic novel.
With no end.
He didn't finish his thought.
"Well, let's just say I didn't make it to class that day."
Shivers run up and down and all over my body.
And I'm amazed because none of what he's said sounds creepy.
"What did you do?"
"I wanted to sit beside you. I was just about to come over and introduce myself, but then I saw you look up again. Only this time, you were looking at him and not me."
"I'm sorry," I tell him honestly. Because I am. Because I really fucking am. "I'm sorry I didn't see you that day. And you know, all the other days after."
I shake my head. "No. It's really not."
"You see me now," he says. "I mean, I hope you do."
"Can I tell you something?"
"When you were standing at the counter earlier, I was staring at you and not at him. And for the first time in a long time, I was thinking about someone – about you – and not him."
"He's a douche."
"Maybe," I tell him, thinking about everything that's happened. "Probably."
"But I'm really happy you were looking at me."
He slides his fingers between mine, and I watch the movement. I'm a little floored by the intimate gesture.
"Let's get out of here," he says. "It's still early. We could do something."
"You mean like actually leave the coffee shop?"
"I think we definitely need to get the fuck out of the coffee shop."
"What do you want to do?"
"Whatever you want, Bella," he says, standing up and pulling me with him. "I'm down for whatever you want."
It's odd how perceptions change. Even odder that mine seem to have done so in the short span of a morning and afternoon. But somehow I know that Edward's right. Maybe not about everything, but certainly about a lot of things. And a panoramic view is so much better than tunnel vision.
Choosing to look at someone when your choices are limitless, makes the choice that much more special.
Edward chose to look at me.
Right now, I choose to look at Edward.
My choice is fucking awesome.
Reviews are love.
Please leave me some.
Thank you for reading. And thank you for all the feedback and love. Your reviews made me smile all day. I wrote this little story for Laura, and I wrote it with her in mind. I'm so happy that you guys enjoyed it.
Thank you to Marvar for editing. She makes everything better (and readable) and I love her.
And thank you to JaimeArkin for pre-reading. She's amazing and I love her, too!
Happy Birthday Laura! ILYYYYYY SFM