The Silvery Moon
Double take. He doesn’t do. Never had the desire to do so. And even though he has known women, enjoyed the playing with them, there’s never been anyone that kept his interest. But this one. What is it about this one? Fascination stops him to stand against a wall, some distance away to watch her with his glass of Champagne in hand.
Her laugh is an intriguing throaty amusement, which he finds he likes very much. Enchanting him further with her expressions and movements, her rings sparkle with almost an animation of joy. He surmises this too seems to be her essence, whilst she describes her art with ease.
He had immediately fallen in love with her paintings this evening. Her impressionist style would have made Monet proud. One could be transported through the colors into another world. Their bold statements and her fresh beauty are making for a choice he can not resist.
People try diligently to get his attention, to no avail. He politely smiles at them and pushes off to stride over to the ‘50s antique, styled jute box. His choice…Van Morrison’s, “Someone Like You”. He turns to watch her and leans against the box with his arms crossed. It is a test. What would she do? He prides himself being a patient man, consequently he waits.
His stature and height at 6’5” with perfect posture has been and continues to turn heads. Even as he waits, the women scamper at him for his attention. He doesn’t notice them because he watches her over their heads.
With the first notes of the tune, she instantly feels the rumblings in her core. Trying not to change her jovial expression to her clients, she turns to the source. Circles back to her group and excuses herself to hurry away. She looks for an escape while attempting not to panic, when finally she spots the French doors to the balcony.
Reaching a vibrant and tropical breeze in the night air, she takes a deep breath. Shifting to question herself, jeez why now? That song. Now. When I’m trying to network my art. Stay cool. This too shall pass. It’s just a melody and it’s just a big full moon. This is too romantic, damn it. And just how do I change the subject when I’m getting too weak…
“Hello, may I share this lovely view with you?” He startles her reverie. Hands her a glass of Champagne accompanying his incredible and charming smile.
She ignores the flirt, takes the glass in defiance to retrieve her own sass, fixes onto his eyes and swallows the entire contents. Giving the glass back to him, she declares. “Thanks, I needed that.”
She whirls on her heel and advances back inside. Paparazzi lets her through the doorway but traps him with a swarm of admirers when he tries to follow her.
In the lavish powder room with hands gripping the countertop of encrusted baubles laid in with tile, she gapes into her mirrored image. She feels like she’s swimming in a sea, being that her dress compliments the tile of aqua and blue tones, along with elaborate golden and greens of seaweed wallpaper behind her. Add the drink’s bubbles dancing in her head, makes for a struggle to stand upright, let alone wonders how can she break out and away from her own opening.
She has worked diligently to make her grand entrance of work in this prestigious place. Now it’s all for naught because one song stirs her to the center and sends her adrift in this sea she finds herself in. Quite the quandary, indeed. Alright, breathe, get a grip and lets get out of here. Think. She whispers to her appearance.
Wait, one minute. There’s no-one in here. Looking around and realizing the oddity of her surroundings. She steadies herself with a calming breath and proceeds to the door to peak out. She hears the excitement and sees the crowd is still at the French doors. It appears by good fortune, whoever that man is, has taken the attention away from her.
Exit, stage left. Cheering herself by repeating old cartoon lines has always been a salvation in tough times. Nice and easy, let's make this getaway. Looking around again, she makes a beeline to the lobby, steps ever lightly because her high heels click on the marble floor. Not that anyone is about, she observes after the fact. Maintaining her stealth mode actually makes her giggle at her own antics.
She hits the door and is free. Outside and happy to see her old friend in the sky. The beautiful full moon. He seems to wink at her from his silvery perch at her little caper. Continuing to move quickly down the street, she hears voices coming out from the same door she just departed. She turns the corner and watches from behind a tall bush.
She spies a man making his way through the mobs of people, hurries to the sidewalk and looks both ways as if he is frantically looking for someone. She snickers at the funny site because it’s like in the movies, and continues to walk towards her apartment. At that thought, she realizes she didn’t grab her purse. “No worries, Max will let me in!” Laughing out loud.
Continuing with ease, she announces to the trees. “I’m really glad I got over that tune long enough to skidaddle. It sure does something to me, I wish I knew why!”
“I do!” He exclaims behind her.
She starts to run but he takes her elbow. “Let me go!”
“I will. I promise. I really want to talk with you. Please don’t run from me.”
“I will run. I don’t know who you are. Wait. Champagne Man?”
He lit up and agrees with a shake of his head. He lets her go, eyes pleading.
“Alright.” She says slowly. “What are you doing here and what do you want?”
“First, I want to get to know you. Second, buy all of your paintings from in there.” Pointing behind him with his thumb stuck out. “Then…third, I want to dance with you to that song.” He questions himself if he should have said that last part. But after catching a glimpse of her shimmering dress through the bushes and hearing her contagious laugh he figures it’s a sign that he’s found her again. Therefore, what does he have to lose.
Her expression of dismay, turns pale at the mention of the song. She braces herself at the sidewalk railing. She fumbles a step, but keeps her balance and puts her hand out to stop him from grabbing her again. “Look, I need to go. And I’d like it if you would turn around and leave me alone.”
“I know this,” he waves his arms around, “seems crazy. It’s just that no matter what I say you’re going to think I’m nutty. The truth is, and I’m just going to blurt this out. Well, it’s just that…I dreamt of you. You in that stunning dress of yours and as I awoke that song, it is a favorite of mine by the way, was playing. Isn’t that remarkable?”
She straightens her stance of 5’9”, begins to back up slowly, all the while shooting daggers and shouting at him. “No. You ARE crazy.”
“Yeah, ok. But please, I’m not going to hurt you.” Hearing the crowd behind him, he motions her to turn and move quickly. “I’m trying to get away from them and I really want to talk with you.”
Max stands at his duty in front of her building. He greets her, but sees her face and comes running for her. “Oh Lass, you’re looking a bit peaked. Let’s get you inside.” She holds onto Max’ forearm beseeching him. Max turns to the man and asks. “They coming for you?”
“Yes Max and thanks for being here for her. She isn’t trusting me.” She glares at him over her shoulder. He continues. “That is, I haven’t given her much of a choice. I’m hoping now that we’re here, you’ll vouch for me Max.”
“Of course, of course! I am sorry you’re frightened Lass, I wanted to surprise you but it looks like it didn’t turn out very well. Please sit here, I’ll get you some water. And then I will explain everything. I promise it’s a fine story, that I’m sure you will like!” Walking to his desk, he points toward the front door and clarifies. “Don’t worry about them, they cannot come in the lobby and will leave in just a few moments. I assure you.”
Sure enough, two police cars pull up with sirens blaring. The officers immediately clear the area and give Max the thumbs up.
Max waves at them and bends down next to her, handing her the glass of water. “Now, drink this and settle. All is well, I assure you Lass. Better? Aw good. Now, where do I begin?” Rubbing his chin, he gets up and takes a chair next to her. He waves to the pacing man, inviting him to sit across from them.
“Yes, right then. From the beginning. Don’t worry Lass, it’s not that long of a story!” He chuckles, making his belly shake and cheeks brighten at her confused look. “Our families go way back you see, so I can attest to his right of it. I’ve know this brilliant and very popular man, as you have seen he is all of that, since he was a boy.” He laughs.
“When we ran into each other the other day, I told him about your work. I love your paintings and I am so very proud of you, don’t you know. You were so nervous about the showing… so, well I. Well I invited him to go so that he could meet you and I figured he’d love them as much as I do and perhaps buy a few. You see, I wanted your exhibit to be a fine success. So I, well I guess maybe I over step?” Searching her beautiful, frowning face with only a little color just now coming back.
“Oh Lass, I’m sorry. I’ve disappointed you. I’ve known you for a bit of time and think the world of you. I was only trying to help.” Pleading with her.
She grabs his hands, looks him square in the eyes. “Max! It’s alright. I understand and I know your heart was and is in the right place. It’s just that all was perfectly well, until…” She trails off. “It’s all fine, really.” She bends over and kisses him on the cheek and squeezes his hands. “Thank you Max, you are very sweet to think of me this way!”
She turns to the stranger, sitting at the edge of his seat, truly uneasy, with thumbs thumping on his knees. And is this anxiety she sees on his incredibly, handsome face she wonders and smiles to herself.
At that, she sits upright, holds onto one of Max’ hands, takes a deep breath and begins with a calm and resolute posture. “In light of this new information, how do you do Mr Champagne Man? It certainly has been an eventful evening to say the least. And I must admit, I do look forward to hearing what you know about the song!”