They had never officially dated. She knew that he had a crush on her and she was definitely interested in him, but somehow things never really paned out for them. They would go out together to see movies. Sometimes they hung out at his house. These weren’t dates though because he never made “the move.”
She waited for him to; she was too shy to do something herself. Sometimes he’d lean slightly towards her. She would catch her breath and nothing more would happen. She tried everything she could think of to encourage him. She’d suggest going for a walk together at night. They’d go and he wouldn’t so much as try to hold her hand. At the movies she would slide over slowly during the movie, even go some far as whisper in his ear about what was happening on the screen. Still he did nothing.
She liked that he was such a gentleman, but it drove her crazy that he’d stare at her longingly, sigh and then again, nothing. She would try to flirt a little. Nothing. She’d dress up and make herself look as beautiful as possible. He’d compliment her and then nothing. Sometimes she thought he’d prefer a girl who was more down to earth and so she dress in her runners, jeans and a t-shirt. Again, nothing. Always nothing!
She called him, she never forgot his birthday, she sent him Christmas gifts and he responded to every gesture and yet… she remained utterly untouched. Eventually she grew angry. It was like he was toying with her; she knew that he was interested but he never took a chance. He was being a coward.
They had known each other for years. Why was he so afraid of asking her out? She had made it as clear as possible that she liked him. She had her pride though and desperately wanted him to show her that he was brave enough to take the leap. She wanted him to tell her how he felt.
Finally, sick of waiting for him to “man-up,” she left. She met and dated other men. She went out dancing and even managed to flirt a little. She learned how to be confident in herself and ultimately she moved on. Her life was difficult at times and she often said all the wrong thing at all the wrong time, but eventually and with the help of others she pulled herself together and became someone she could be proud of.
Years later, she saw him again. For her life had changed; she had grown into a woman who respected herself and who understood her own worth. Oddly, he seemed unchanged. Sure he had dated; in fact, he was much more experienced in that area than she was. And yet, he was still the same guy she had known so very long ago.
There was still something lurking between them, but she refused to acknowledge it lest it give him ideas. They started hanging out again and they laughed together just like they had before. He still occasionally stared at her and he often made off-color remarks, but she wouldn’t rise to the bait anymore.
They were as they had ever been: friends. She would look to her other friendships for invitations to parties. It was with other people that she danced and flirted and let loose a little. When she was with him a different part of her personality would emerge and though she enjoyed being around him, she knew one thing for certain:
For them, nothing would ever happen.
And finally, she was ok with just that.
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