Smiling in the dark, she was greeted with three e-mails in a row from him. She realized she sort of liked crazy. She felt a rush seeing his full name in bold under ‘Sender’ on top of the cue of family birthday reminders, forwarded dumb jokes or inspirational stories with animated angels, and a slew of group project-related e-mails for her Economics class that she would ignore for another day.
She clicked on the first of his messages- a sometimes rhyming poem they had written together on a napkin at Ritual about dogs with bandanas and the re-emergence and questionable acceptance of patchy facial hair within the ‘Hipster’ community. The following email had two attachments- photos they had taken of each other in mid-sip, faces downturned into giant white mugs.
She reached for her glass of water that she regularly left on her nightstand before opening the third email and glanced at the digital red numbers on her ancient alarm clock. 12:11. It had been approximately a half hour since he had walked her to her arched doorway, given her a sweet, tongue-less kiss goodnight, and headed for home on his blue and white bike.
She couldn’t tell her roommates about the three e-mails, she thought. They would think he was crazy and needy and possessive and borderline stalker-ish and not playing by the post-first date contacting rules. They would advise her to never see him again. But, she liked that he wasn’t into games, appreciated his attentiveness, and felt relieved to have confirmation that the date had gone as well as she thought it had. Instead, she would tell them about the art installment where he appreciated the same pieces she had and made fun of the same pieces she had. She would tell them about the conversation they had shared about problems in the school system and the later realization that they had both grown up with cats named after early 90’s cartoon characters. And, she would tell them that he had suggested they go for coffee, further extending their time together.
She thought, too, about the kiss- how gentle he was. She thought she might add a little to that scene for dramatic effect during the undoubted Q&A portion of the retelling, for good measure. She had been meaning to work on her storytelling skills anyway, on ‘captivating her audience,’ as her speech teacher had said. She waved her finger on the mouse in order to open the third e-mail.