It's been a long time since I've posted a short story for Fiction Friday. I thought with Valentine's Day only a week away, I'd post a lighthearted story for all of those who may be waiting for love. This was one of my Challenge entries on FaithWriters.com for the topic of "Patience".
Be sure to get in on the fun by posting your own fictional piece and linking to it from Joanne Sher's blog, An Open Book.
Love is (not so) Patient
My life is over.
Okay, not really. But right now it sure feels like it.
Amber and Shawn just announced they are getting married. Should be a happy occasion, right? Apparently it is for the thirty or so single people around me who are applauding with overdramatized enthusiasm. And, of course for Amber and Shawn who are beaming as bright as the flash from that gigantic bling on Amber’s finger.
But this is not good news for me. The third engagement announcement in two months, our singles’ group is dwindling rapidly. Available guys are being stolen right from under my nose. Pretty soon, the only ones left will be Stan, Phil and Brian. They make great pals but definitely aren’t my type. Especially Brian, a momma’s boy whose hair hangs to the middle of his back, whose beard length rivals Pippi Longstocking’s braids, and has more chest hair poking out of his shirt than Rosie, my bearded collie, has on her whole body.
Since I turned eighteen, I’ve been praying for a nice, clean-cut, responsible guy who has his priorities in order.
That's twelve years I've been praying! Is it any question that my patience is wearing thin?
I sigh. So this makes three newly engaged happy couples who soon would need to leave our singles’ group for the “newly marrieds.”
Goody for them.
“Did you hear the awesome news?” Stephie squeals as she slides into the chair next to mine.
Stephie is one of those too-happy singles. She’s here for fun and fellowship and claims that if and when God wants her to meet her husband, she will. Til then, she’s just enjoying the ride. Of course, Stephie is only twenty-two – she probably still sucks her thumb at night. We’ll see if she still has this perky attitude when she’s pushing thirty.
“I heard it,” I mumble.
She socks me in the arm. “Oh, come on, Lil, be happy for them.”
“I am.” I fake smile.
Stephie gives me a blank look. Then her face brightens. “Hey, a new guy joined tonight.”
“Is he cute?”
She raises her eyebrows. “Extremely.”
I straighten my shoulders, feeling hopeful for two seconds before slouching back down in my chair. “I’m sure Christina or Robin or Alexis will snatch him up in no time. They all took dibs on the next new guy to grace those doorways.”
Stephie rolls her eyes. “Lily. You cannot take dibs on another human being. When that spark happens, it happens.” She clutches her chest like she’s auditioning for a Broadway production.
“So where is he?” I look around the room. The singles’ pastor and his wife (what’s up with that, anyway?) stand at the front, chatting with a still-beaming Amber and Shawn. I spot Christina at the snack table talking to Stan and Phil. Robin and Alexis sit in the corner, texting, probably to each other. A few other regulars mill about.
And there he is. Coming our way.
Stephie elbows me in the side and I try not to grimace.
Gorgeous New Guy pulls up a chair and looks right at me. “Hey,” he says.
The drool starts pooling. Not making a good first impression, here.
But wait. That voice. That “hey”. It’s familiar.
I squint. No way. Could it be?
Stephie giggles. “Told you there was a new guy here. Looks great, doesn’t he?”
I can’t stop staring. This can’t possibly be the same person who just last week could pass for a grizzly bear.
“You like it?” He grins, running a hand through his newly cropped hair.
I observe his smooth chin and chiseled jaw line. Never...noticed that...before. My eyes go to the opening of his shirt. What do you know? No hairs poking out.
“What happened?” I ask, jaw still slack.
“Well, you could say I had a revelation. It was time for a change. I got my own place, cut my hair – even shaved my chest.”
Stephie laughs. “Is there any particular reason you went to all this trouble, Brian?” She asks with a wink.
He looks at me. “Well, I was...I am kind of wondering if you’ll go out with me.” His cheeks turn a light shade of pink.
Wow...have those great cheekbones been there all along?
Okay, so I’m thinking I may try to dig up a little more patience. And a bit more trust that maybe God does have everything under control.
And perhaps I’ll even find some enthusiasm for Amber and Shawn.