Thursday, October 6, 2011

Chapter 5

Bachelor Buttons...the flowers of anticipation.

“Mommy, why can’t I go along with you and Loops to the concert?” Sofia cried as I put the finishing touches on my make-up.

“Because, this is an adults only concert and believe me, I’d rather be staying at home with you tonight instead of being with Loops,” I said the last part through my teeth, putting on a fake smile for my daughter who adored the man. 

Earlier in the day Jess answered the phone at the shop and instead of telling him I wasn’t available like I had told her to when I saw the caller ID; she had placed the phone to my ear, forcing me to talk to Joffrey who asked me once again to go along with him.  I hadn’t seen Arcade Fire live in forever and as much as I wanted to tell him no once again, I couldn’t bring myself to do it.  But the real clincher of the deal was that he promised to leave me alone for a week.  However, I was still completely annoyed that he insisted on taking me out to dinner before hand.

I had just finished applying my eye liner when I heard our intercom buzz.  I went to run out and answer it to tell him to wait downstairs, but Nana got to it first and invited him up.  “Really Nana?  I don’t think he needs to come up to the apartment…” I growled before bending over to put on my shoes.

“I’m sure it would help things if Sofia could see him before you two go out,” she said as she consoled the child who was clinging to her leg in tears.  “Besides, we have nothing to hide here,” she remarked with a warning smile that reminded me once again not to be too proud.

I just shook my head and walked into the bedroom to grab a light, long sleeved zippered sweatshirt in case the restaurant was cold.  When I walked back out Joffrey was standing in the living room of our apartment, looking like a giant and completely out of place while my daughter ran over to him, begging to be picked up.  He kneeled down to scoop her up into his arms.  She immediately put a death grip around his neck, pleading her case to be taken along to the concert.  I just stood in the doorway observing the whole scene as my heart constricted a bit, watching him face the same feelings I dealt with everyday when having to say no to my daughter.

He looked up at me with a look that said, “help,” but I just gave him a smirk and stood in place.  Besides, I was having just as much fun admiring how he looked.  He had a little gel in his hair to tame his semi-curly hair and wore a tan colored v-neck shirt with a dark brown pattern that faded across it.  The shirt clung to his muscular body, accentuating his broad shoulders and muscular torso while bringing out his blue eyes.  Once again he had on a pair of custom jeans that hugged his thighs while still giving him that relaxed style I had become accustomed to.  I have a hot date for the night.  Well, not date…um, yeah. 

I looked down at my own clothing which was a pair of tight, black short capri’s with a white tank-top dress made of light cotton that came to mid-thigh.  It was layered with a tight black tank-top underneath.  I had my hair pulled back in a low, sleek pony tail, showing off my many ear piercings.  I hoped my high heeled ankle boots weren’t too much, but my thoughts were interrupted by a sudden invasion of my personal space.

I looked up and held my breath.

“You look perfect,” Joffrey said quietly with a look that made me pause and look back longer than I wanted to.

“I don’t need your approval,” I mumbled, side stepping him before he could see my appreciative smile.  I walked over to Sofia who had crawled back up onto Nana’s lap, hiding her face.  Smoothing back the disappointed child’s hair, I knelt down beside the two of them to whisper to her.  Sofia, I will be home after you go to bed, so I love you and I will see you in the morning before you leave for school.  Please behave for Nana and I promise that Loops will make it up to you.”

She lifted up her head enough so that I could see her eyes look at me and then over to Joffrey who was standing beside me.  “You promise?” she sniffled as she asked the question more to Joff than to me.

“I promise, Grasshopper,” he answered with furrowed eyebrows to act sympathetic, trying to hide his smile that would have told how funny the whole situation was.

“Okay,” she sniffed in as she sat up and put her arms out to hug me.  “I love you, Mommy.”

I leaned in and hugged her tight, “Love you too pumpkin.”  I then gave Nana a kiss on the cheek and walked out the door after Joff.

I could tell she was having second guesses about saying yes to me as I watched her look over her outfit.  It took all I had not to ignore Sofia and pay all my attention to Avery.  She looked perfectly punk/chic for a night out at a concert and I was more than ready to walk around with her on my arm.  The little additions of a couple silver bracelets jingling on her wrist and a long silver chained necklace with a simple green stone hanging down to just below her breasts made her look like a million bucks.  Plus, with her hair pulled back I felt something stir down low as I thought about how perfect her neck looked and how much I wanted to kiss her there.

I helped her into the Jeep and then we headed to my favorite Sushi place in Malibu called Nobu Malibu.  The ride over went rather well because we talked about music, something that Avery seemed to be very passionate about.

“I always end up blowing my Christmas and birthday money from my Nana on concert tickets,” she divulged with a shy smile.

“I’m the same way,” I admitted with a smile that earned me a smack in the arm.

“Yeah, I’m sure you have to rape the piggy bank to go to your favorite shows,” she said sarcastically as she rolled her beautiful green eyes but smiling broadly.

“Yeah, it oinks at me every time to show its disapproval,” I laughed, basically cracking myself up.  The good news was that she too found it funny and again I was rewarded with another smile.  Yahtzee!

Before I knew it, we were pulling into the parking lot of Nobu Malibu and I was helping her out of the Jeep.  As much as I wanted to, I didn’t take her hand, but I did offer her my arm.  She looked at me, rolled her eyes and grumbled as she threaded her arm through mine saying, “Remember, this is not a date.”  I just smiled in return.

The restaurant was a trendy one that a lot of LA’s younger crowd frequented it and of course the Paparazzi were out in full force.  As we got closer I heard ramblings of people in the reservation line saying that Evan Longoria and baseball rookie Mike Stanton were inside eating, along with one of those chicks from the Hill’s or whatever MTV show was popular at the moment.  I went to take a step forward but I felt Avery’s arm pull me back a little.  “Something wrong?”

“Um…” she said quietly, looking pale as a ghost.  “I don’t know if I’m hungry for Sushi.”

I looked at her confused, mainly because when we got in the car and I announced where we were headed, she seemed very excited.  I turned to her and took her hand that was nestled by side.  “Avery what is wrong?”

“There just might be someone here that I am not really fond of seeing…” she answered nervously.

“Well, if someone gives you a problem, I will take care of it,” my tough hockey player guy complex kicking in.  “No one is ruining your adult night out,” I said with a wink, earning a weak smile and a slow nod of the head.  She left me hold onto her hand as we walked into the restaurant and headed to our seats.  At first she looked around nervously, but then seemed to relax when we began ordering our food.

“So, I was thinking,” She said in an uncommonly shy voice, “Can you get me a list of the names of these kids hockey clubs you mentioned last night?”

I couldn’t help but smile brightly.  “Sure, actually I’ll get the paper work and everything together for you too.  That way we can get her enrolled for November, if you like.”

“Yeah, that would be great,” she said with a sincere smile.  “She talked to me about it some more today and Nana also said it would be good for her to get around some more male role models.”

“I can understand that…” I began to say but was interrupted by a man’s silhouette that was now shading our table in the dim lights, causing Avery to go pale white once more.  “Oh, hey Evan,” I said to the 3rd baseman of the Tampa Bay Rays.  We had run into each other numerous times over the years since I’ve lived in Cali and often hung in the same crowd when he was in town for his off season, since he was from Downey, right outside of LA.

“Hey,” he said, yet he wasn’t looking at me, instead he was looking at Avery like he too was looking at a ghost.

“Hi, Evan,” she said, not able to conjure up a smile, yet she didn’t look like she felt threatened by him.

“You changed your number…” he said like he still couldn’t believe he was seeing her.

“Yeah, I lost my phone and decided to change carriers,” she spoke nonchalantly, but for some reason I could tell she was lying.

“Oh, well here is my number, call me, I’d like to catch up if you’re not too busy,” he said as he glanced over at me and looked back over to her.  She didn’t make any move to say that I wasn’t her boyfriend and I didn’t make any effort to tell him otherwise.  I just watched in a tension filled silence as she handed him her phone so that he could punch in the numbers.  He handed it back and nodded to me, “Nice seeing you Loops,” he said half heartily and nodded to Mike Stanton who was standing behind him to leave and away they went leaving in their wake a very awkward situation between Avery and I.

“I’m done,” I announced quietly as I took my napkin off my lap and laid it on the table next to my half eaten plate of sushi.  I felt bad as I looked over and saw that Joffrey still had a decent amount of food on his plate, but I needed air and fast.

For a person who sometimes acted dimwitted, he got the hint quickly and handed me the keys to his Jeep.  “Go, I’ll get the rest of our food packed up and pay for the bill.  I’ll meet you outside.”

“Thank you,” I said sincerely before hopping out of the booth and darting towards the door. 

Evan. He looked amazingly beautiful and the years have only made him better.  When we first met he was still in an awkward, gangly phase, but it was obvious with more years of training in the big leagues, he was now a man.  The father of my child.  He was not the college baseball player any longer; he was now a team MVP and starred in commercials for the MLB.  He now dated supermodels and cheerleaders, not the art student he met at one of the college bars after a game.  Of course we had been together a couple times after he made it to the big leagues, but after not seeing or talking to him for two years, it definitely felt like a million years ago and he was now on a lot higher standard.  Not that Joffrey is much different.  But hockey players seem more down to earth than baseball players…or once again I find myself thinking in my pessimistic way about the whole situation.

Joffrey ended up beating me to the Jeep and was waiting for me when I walked out from behind the bushes after throwing up my dinner.  As much as I hated doing it, I felt better.  The downside was that I was sure I looked like shit.  I walked over to the passenger side of the Jeep where Joff was holding the door open and just stopped and dropped my shoulders.  “Sorry.”

“No need to say sorry.  I feel bad for talking you into going in there…”

“I was going to run into him again at some point I mumbled as I climbed up into my seat.  Do you have any gum?”  I asked, changing the subject.

He just laughed and jogged around to his side of the Jeep and climbed in.  He lifted up the center console, revealing a couple different kinds of gum.

“Damn, this is like a fresh breath arsenal.  Kiss a lot?” I quipped.

“I never kiss and tell,” he said with a dangerous smile that made my stomach flip for a better reason this time.  “You still up for the show?”

“Hell yeah, now more than ever,” I exclaimed and popped a piece of gum in my mouth, thankful that he seemed to know not to ask questions.

The Shrine Auditorium was packed by the time the opening act took the stage.  I had no real choice but to stand against Joffrey, nevertheless with a drink or two to loosen myself up, I really wasn’t bothered by it.  By the time the Arcade Fire took the stage I had completely forgotten the evening’s earlier events and was ready to rock out to my favorite band with my “date.”  During the intermission, Joffrey grabbed my hand and drug me through the crowd to get some water.  We were both drenched in sweat but enjoying every minute of it.

“Eeew, I haven’t been this sweated at a show since I was in high school,” I announced while peeling my shirt away from my skin to get some air to my skin.  “And you sure as hell don’t seem to be fairing much better,” I pointed out.  I took my finger and drug it down his arm, leaving a line behind on his skin.

“Doesn’t it feel great?!” he asked excitedly.  “I think that’s one of the best things coming to live shows, you can just feel the energy,” he smiled broadly, genuinely happy.  “Besides I’m enjoying the sexy sweaty look on you.”

His forwardness took the breath away from me.  Besides his comments about my smile, this was the first time he actually seemed to make any advance on me.  As much as I had loathed him in many situations, tonight I couldn’t help but flirt back and say, “It doesn’t look so bad on you either.”  It’s not a lie…  He looked down at me like he wanted to make a move, causing me to hold my breath but the band struck a chord and then next thing I knew we were moving together back into the crowd to enjoy the next set.


  1. Can't wait for more...I feel like there's going to be some Evan drama.

  2. THE EVAN LONGORIA?!?!?! Wow, was not expecting that, I definiteky thought it was going to be an NHLer! I loved the twist, I hope she lets Joff take her out again and she tells him everything. Great update

  3. OMG! Love the twist of Sofia's father being a MLB player, when I expected him to be a NHLer. :) I'm having a good feeling of what's to come... I can't wait!