Monday, November 9, 2009

Chapter Three: Planting the Seeds

In invite you to enjoy the third installment of my fiction project.  Comments and critiques are always welcome. 

Demi stared at the phone in her hand. She couldn't stop staring at it. Mr. Gray...Gus. Was on his way to the park as she sat staring in disbelief. Part of her wanted to run away as fast as possible. Another part of her knew that Mr. Gray had her home address and would find her if he really wanted to see her. She was sure that he just had to call the staffing company directly and ask them. They were supposed to have a personal information policy indicating that they would not provide a candidate' phone number or address to anyone out side of the company without the person's permission. But Demi figured that if the owner and president of their largest client wanted to get that information, it wouldn't take long for it to be provided.

She didn't know exactly where he was coming from, but soon she saw him walking toward her. She froze, unable to move. He was dressed more casually - jeans, a black polo shirt and black shoes. He smiled as he approached the fountain. He would smile and nod at everyone who made eye contact with him as he walked toward Demi. That charm was certainly what made every one fall under his spell. He didn't say a word as he stopped in front of Demi sitting on the edge of the fountain. He reached out his hand. She started to do the same as if to shake it, but instead he took her hand and gently tugged on her arm to get her to stand up. She did.

The day she stood in her office and he in her doorway, she hadn't been nearly this close to him. His form was imposing. He was much older than she was, she wasn't certain exactly how much older. He was in fantastic shape, obviously being able to pay for all the personal training he could want. He was tall, the top of Demi's head came to his chin. She looked up at his blue eyes, and the quickly looked away, hoping he didn't see her blush.

"Did you want to finish your walk" he asked.

"Sure, I wasn't going anywhere in particular. Was just walking around."

"Well, then lets just keep walking and we can talk."

Demi didn't know exactly where they were heading, she let Mr. Gray take the lead. At first their conversation was just small talk - they talked about the weather and about the crazy storm just a few days before. They talked about the flowers that Demi had received and he wanted to know if she liked them. He asked her about living in new york - Had she been here long? Did she like it. She told him about about growing up in Macedon in Western New York. That she had grown up near Lake Eerie and had lived there her whole life. She had wanted to move to New York since she was a little girl. As she kept talking she realized how comfortable he really made her.

They walked for a couple of hours. She noticed that he didn't actually tell her much about himself, just little bits and pieces. But he did ask her a lot of questions. She found that they were very near the street entrance of the park. And he stopped.

"Demetra, I would like to take you to dinner this evening."

She found herself smiling at him. "I would like that," she said.

"Great. Shall I pick you up at," he glanced at his watch, "8:30?" Demi looked at her watch as well, it was nearly 5pm.

"Sure, that would be great. I'll go home and change my clothes and will see you then."

"Then I will see you then." He reached out his hand this time to really shake hers.

Demi nearly bounced all the way home. What the hell was her problem? It would be fun. No strings attached. She was an adult. She had been an adult for a while in spite of her "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" relationship with her family. She was trying to shed that and it was the very reason she had moved to New York. Why the hell not, she thought.

She walked into her apartment, closed the door behind her and leaned against it as though she was unable to hold herself up. The flowers on her counter radiated color at her, reminding her that all this was real. She pushed herself off the door and ran into her bedroom. She opened her closet and the scene that followed was a montage of clips of every chick movie ever made. The lead character needs to find a perfect dress for that perfect date and so she cycle though everything in the closet. Demi knew that Gus Gray was not going to take her just anywhere for dinner. She didn't know where it would be, but it would be expensive and amazing. She vetoed most of the dresses in her closet for one ridiculous reason or another. She pulled out a simple black wrap dress. You could never go wrong with black. At least all the fashion magazines told her that. Although, What Not To Wear would tell her not to be afraid of color. On that note, she grabbed a pair of red heels out of the closet as well. Some accessories, and her hair down and curls fluffed, and she would be ready for a date with a married man.

She called her mother back. She wasn't going to tell her details, but she wanted her not to keep calling all night. She told her she had received flowers from someone she had just met the other day and was going to dinner with him tonight. Mrs. S asked if he was Greek. Demi told her she didn't think so. Her mom snorted. She said she met him at work, which was not a lie. Then her mom asked what his name was. "Chris", she responded. Gus just sounded like an older name, and she panicked. "Well, have fun with this Chris" Mrs. S told her daughter. "I will, ma". Demi hit the end button on her phone and felt reasonably confident that no one would bother her the rest of the day. She was pretty certain that an affair like this wasn't going to last long and she would just tell her mom that she and "Chris" broke up. If Gus left his wife to marry Demi, then she would cross that bridge when she got to it.

It wasn't long before the doorbell rang. Tentatively, Demi opened it. Gus was there in tailored black pants, a button down blue shirt and very shiny shoes. He looked directly inside at the flowers on the counter.

"I see you have my flowers" he said

"Yes, they are very pretty."

"Shall we go?" he asked and held out his arm. Demi placed her hand in the crook of his elbow and smiled. She pulled the door locked behind them. When they got down to the street, she saw his white Lexus parked outside. She wasn't much of a car girl, so she didn't know what kind it was. She was, however, surprised that it didn't come with a driver. Politely, Gus opened the passenger side door for her.

"Where are we going?" she asked

"Some where nice," he grinned. They spent the rest of the ride in silence. With all the twists and turns of the city blocks, Demi wasn't sure where they were at all, but they arrived at a restaurant in just a few minutes. The sign read "Bacchanalia".

"Is it Greek?" she asked. Non greek people always seemed to want to take her to a greek restaurant.

"No, it is just decadent" he responded.

Inside was a contemporary restaurant with several levels. It almost looked like a theatre with some of the tables in individual boxes. Of course, their table was in one such box. The food was out of this world, everything served tapas style, or "small plates" as the menu called it. Demi and Gus ordered all types of food as well as several bottles of wine. Demi didn't even want to know what the cost of this dinner would be.

As they ate, they talked. Gus made Demi feel very comfortable. She leaned close to the table and looked him in the eyes.

"So, I know you don't want to be a temp for the rest of your life. What do you really love."

She shrugged. "I don't know, really. I haven't quite figured it out yet. I love to garden..."

He laughed heartily. "You love to garden but you moved to new York city?"

"I know, it seems strange. I had thought about volunteering with some of the green space projects here in the city." He poured her more wine, which she instantly began to sip. She had lost count, but red wine was making her feel warm and good.

She told him more about plants and he listened very intently. At some point he ordered some dessert and they ate the tiny fancy sweet treats and kept talking.

"I think we need to get out of here," he said. she looked in his eyes. "I really want to kiss you, and this table is in my way."

The bells were going off in Demi's head. Not the good kind of tinkling faery bells, but the alarm bells. "Married Man" she kept thinking. But the truth was, she wanted to kiss him too. And, he had told her, he had a "arrangement" with Hannah Gray. At this very moment Hannah could be on a date with a 30 year old young man in Washington State.

"I would like that" Demi heard herself say. They got up and as they walked out Gus put his hand on the small of her back. They went out to the car and he drove he to his penthouse apartment. She barely had time to find herself in awe of the building as he drew her to his body and kissed her. She had never been kissed like that before, but she knew that countless women before her had been. She didn't care. Right now, she was flushed with wine and ready for anything. She kissed him back. She kissed his neck. She found herself unbuttoning his shirt. And she knew the next place she would be was in his bed.

And all the while she wondered what she was doing, and never thought to stop herself.

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