The pick me up

The man sitting before me hates cats, and he also loves to smile. I believe that I am going crazy. To make matters worse, he’s holding a Fudge Sunday towards me, begging me to relieve his slender fingers of the chill. It’s funny how fate works. First, I step unwillingly into a friends house where he told me there were going to be a host of dancing bodies galumphing across his floor to the song Party in the USA. I figure that everyone else needs to see how pale and unshaven I am so I agree to go. I vow to take a cab back quickly, as I still have a phobia of parties because of what the last one did to me.

I arrive and instantly I feel like an ant who’s lost in the colony. Gay boys splatter the small apartment as if they are awaiting a neck massage from God, or some other good looking man. I am the cloud to this sunny dance fest because I immediately want to retreat to the kitchen where I am alone. I’m still not used to this many people in one place. I want to go home straight away but soon warm up to the mass of gay boys flashing their smiles at me as if they are police badges.

I make It to a corner that has a table in it and sit down but stand up soon afterwords to introduce myself to a few people. All of the guys who approach me comment about my cane and about the fact that I am cute, even in my current unshaven state. Many come right out and tell me they want to know if I am a sexual freak in the bedroom. I trip them as they walk away, causing many to spill their drink.

I don’t meet anyone really stellar so I sit and hang out at my table. Soon, however, a fellow catches my attention. A tall brown boy sits in a chair opposite me. He’s holding the fudge Sunday. Soon, we’re off to the races talking. He opens with the very abrupt,

“You look like you seriously need some chocolate. You look so lost I’m worried you’d never make it home.” instead of letting a sarcastic retort fly, I give him a sad smile. I feel very vulnerable and I am not even sure why. I slowly reach out and take the Sunday, giving it the third degree by drilling my eyeball all through it’s contents, just in case. I look up at my mystery chocolate man and cock my head.

“Is it really that bad? I mean, noticeable?”

“Yes.” my face must have changed to one of pure despair because his eyes suddenly grow as wide and as sad as I feel. He doesn’t say anything however, he just watches me gingerly make progress with the Sunday. that’s good because I don’t want to talk right now. I have clammed up but he doesn’t push or prod. Instead, he appears to be fighting back the urge to hug me. His arms lay on the table, with a look flickering on and off his face during my Sunday bliss. He looks like he’s arguing with himself to hug me.

“How did you know I needed this?” I ask him, gesturing to my empty cup. He smiles.

“Didn’t you kinda ask that question just a few minutes ago?” this makes me grin a bit.

“Well, I am getting old after all so I need to double check on these things.” he beams. He seems to become much happier now that he’s retrieved a smile from me. Without realizing it, my hand is resting on the table. My eyes, however, are glued to his face. He has a brown complexion, with a boyish smile and thin cheek bones that surround really expressive eyes. His buzz cut only makes his eyes spring to life with their expressive nature. His shirt is bright yellow and his toes touch mine under the table. I can tell he’s very tall sitting down.

My comment causes his pearly whites to gleam with his beaming smile. I suddenly feel much better than when I arrived here. The neat thing is that Mr sweets notices this too so he keeps the conversational ball rolling with,

“Double checking is always good, but I noticed you guzzled that Sunday down quick!”

“That’s because I thought you slipped in some IQ enhancing substances in there,” I smile. He beams even more before he morphs into a serious train of thought.

“I could just tell that, one, you needed someone to just get you, two, that you had a bunch of bad things happen recently, your face is like a neon sign, by the way, and, three, it makes me sad to see other people sad. It really does.”

“And yet, you hate cats?” I grin.

“Indeed, I hate cats!” his face shifts into serious mode again. “do you want to talk about it?” I am glad he asks because I don’t want to talk about it…

“No. I’m not ready to talk about it yet, but you know those times where you just want to have someone hold you, and bask in the silence?”

“Yeah. they’re the worst. Especially when you expect your friends to do it because they are supposed to just get you but they push away instead.”

“Yeah! Well, that’s the circle of life for you.” instead of replying, he reaches over and grasps my hand with the caution of a kid on a tricycle. It feels so welcoming I forget where I am even though I remember who I am with.

“I bet you’re a very kind person.” he softly says.

“Why are you willing to take such a big gamble?” I quip.

“Your eyes tell me everything I need to know. That, and, well, I just have a hunch.” he squeezes my hand and I squeeze his. He knows he’s having an effect on me and he appears to treat me with even more tenderness. Suddenly he starts to get up. I don’t want him to go so I hold his hand and try to pull him down again but he gently pulls away from me.

“trust me, I’ll be back.” a few minutes later, I am working my way through another chocolate Sunday as he holds my other hand and just talks to me. He talks to me about the social work classes he’s taking at DePaul, he tells me all about the work he does as a vet’s secretary, and he just rubs my hand with his thumb as he relishes in my brief bliss. He listens to me as I ramble on about the complex facets of life and he poses questions to get me to explain what I mean or to pose a different point of view. He tells me that he’s stuck on the latest LEGO game and I give tips because I’ve beaten the game several times.

Soon, a slow song comes on, and we both stand up as if we were conditioned to strut to the center of the room. People must sense somethings happening because everybody vacates, leaving us to slow dance to a female singer. It’s so wonderful the song ends in seconds. Soon, it is time for me to leave. My mystery man takes me outside to wait for the cab. He beams as he helps me into my jacket. I can’t help it, I can’t stop beaming. Outside, he turns to face me.

“You know how people usually say that someone is a beautiful person, and they usually mean, like, models and stuff?”

“Yeah?”

“Would it be corny of me to say I think you’re a beautiful person?”

“You know what? I don’t know!” I grin and he beams again.

“You really do have a wonderful smile. It’s contagious.” I smile again, just before his face shifts to serious mode again.

“I’m gonna ask you a few questions…”

“Just so you know, I can’t even answer third grade geography questions.” he beams before placing his hands on my shoulders, and slowly moving them to my face. Soon, we’re staring right at each other.

“First. What’s your name?” I giggle. I start blushing.

“Robert. What’s yours?” his hands feel like clouds on my face.

“Rodger.” he answers. I grin up at him. His hands slightly tighten as he swallows.

“so, Rodger, what’s question number two?”

“Robert, he says. Can I kiss you?” a dozen replies rush into my brain but I quickly settle on one.

I did it, reader. I let him kiss me.

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Author: Robert W Kingett

Robert Kingett is a gay blind journalist, and author, with many publications in magazines, anthologies, and blogs. He has judged many writing contests and has won many awards for his writings and advocacy.

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