Monday, April 28, 2014

Summer Sadness

On Thursday, I convinced Luke to drive with me to Fremont, Nebraska for a high school girl's tennis match for Elena's sister, Elle.  Except for when I'm in season, in addition to working at the Racquet Club, I give lessons, and Elle was one of the girls I worked with individually, so I tried to make her matches when I had a chance.  Unfortunately, because I had been so busy during this season, I hadn't had an opportunity to watch her play at all, or to work with her.  The only time I'd seen her recently was when we went dress shopping for Elena's wedding.  She had worked really hard during her high school career, though, and was playing number one singles for varsity this year.  I was so proud of her.  The night we had gone dress shopping she told me she was going to try to walk-on to the tennis team.

Since Luke and I had scheduled to have a date, I asked him to go with, but I don't think he was very pleased about it.  We arrived while the girls were warming up with their opponents, signaling that the match would be starting shortly.  I grabbed Luke's hand and walked with him down to Elle's court.  Once arriving, I found Elena there with Jeff, and Elena and Elle's parents, Gary and Barb.  Since I had grown up with their family, Gary and Barb were like second parents to me.  They stood up and greeted me, each of them enveloping me into bear hugs.  I introduced them to Luke, and settled in to watch the match.  After a few games, Elle looked over and saw me, and waved excitedly.  I returned the sentiment.  When her match was over, we stayed around and chatted.  Elle told me that they had multiple matches left, and their season didn't end until around the middle to end of May, depending on how far they went during tournament.  She looked at me expectantly, and I told her I would definitely try to make it to at least one more.  I told her that once my season was over, I would be able to make more.  She asked, "Do you have any matches left?"

"I do.  Tomorrow we leave for Illinois, and then we have two more matches here the weekend after.  After that is our tournament, but the team has really struggled this year, so I'm not sure how well we'll do."

"Would it be okay if I came to one of them?"

"Oh, Elle, of course!  You know you don't even need to ask.  I'd love for you to come!"

She smiled widely at me and gave me a tight hug before going to cheer on the rest of her team that was still playing.

I saw that Elena and Jeff were chatting with Luke.  I strolled over to them.  As I was approaching I heard Jeff asking Luke about his summer plans.  I realized at that moment we really hadn't discussed the summer, and it was quickly approaching.  I thought about how after Illinois this weekend, home matches the next, tournament after that, finals were going to be about a week or two after my last matches.  I needed to focus on some studying and writing some papers.  I made a mental note to pack my laptop and textbooks so I could work on some final term papers while traveling to Illinois.  Lost in my thoughts, I didn't hear what Luke was saying, so I wanted to make sure to talk to him about summer when we left.  We said our goodbyes to Elena and Jeff.  I told Elena I would see her later that night, and we left.

As we were driving back, I asked Luke about his summer plans.

"Oh... yeah, I wanted to talk to you about that.  I think I'm going home."

I raised an eyebrow and snuck a sideways glance at him, but then immediately flicked my eyes back over to the road.  "I see."

"Are you mad?"

"Well, I mean, I'm not happy.  But I guess I'm a little more upset that you are just now telling me with less than a month of school left."

"I know, I'm sorry.  I actually made the decision yesterday.  I spoke with my parents and they want me to come home to help out."

"Help out?"

"You know, just with the house and stuff.  But anyway, I'm leaving my stuff here with Nate, because we already know we'll be living there next year again, and he's staying there the whole summer.  I'll be back to visit, don't you worry!  Plus, the basketball team is running camps for kids a few weeks towards the end of June, so I'll be back, then, to help run those.  What are you doing?"

"I'm actually staying on campus this summer.  I'm going to be working at the Racquet Club a couple days a week.  In addition, I'm taking a summer class, too.  I'm hoping to be able to take minimum credit hours next year, and some easier classes, since it's my last year.  I purposefully made last year and this year pretty hard and major focused so I could relax a little more next year."  I paused, and then added, "And of course I can come visit you, too, if you want."

"But you're going to be so busy!  How would you even get any time off to come down there?"

I sighed.  "I honestly don't know.  I guess we'll play it by ear, and talk all the time, right?"

He moved his hand to my thigh and squeezed, "Of course."

"So I wanted to let you know that I think my parents are coming to one of my matches the next weekend."

"Are you trying to ask me something?"

"I just didn't know if you wanted to come, and if so, if you were okay with probably meeting my parents?"

"Meeting the parents of my girlfriend?  What if they don't approve?" He asked in mock worry.

"They'll like you.  Besides, you aren't going to be around anyway all summer, so even if they don't, it isn't like you'll have to see them," I respond teasingly to him.

I pull up outside his house and he asks me if I want to come in.  He adds, "Nate is staying the night with his girlfriend, so we would have my room all to ourselves."

I look him up and down in the now dim light, my eyes pausing on Thor.  "Um, I think I should probably pass for now.  I'm leaving early tomorrow morning again, and with how little of school we have left, I have several papers I need to get started on."

I could see the disappointment flash across his face.  "Okay, well, be safe, and I'll talk to you tomorrow?"

"Yep!  Goodnight, Luke."

"Goodnight, and good luck over the weekend!"  He gave me a soft, but lingering kiss, that left me regretting my decision to go home.

When I arrived home Elena was already there, in the living room watching Netflix.  She paused it and turned towards me when I sat down next to her on the couch.  "So what'd you think?"

She gave me an unreadable look and said, "He's okay."

I furrowed my brow at her, "What do you mean just okay?"

"I don't know, Aleah.  He just seems... unattached."

"To me?  How?"

"Yeah, and I can't pinpoint it.  I can't say exactly what it is.  I'm sorry.  Please don't think I'm a jerk."

I frowned.  "You aren't.  I know you've always been honest with me.  Thanks.  I just really want you all to like him."

"I know.  Maybe I'm wrong.  He was probably just having a bad day or something."

I shrugged my shoulders and opened my laptop, to do some Facebook browsing before packing my bags.  At the very top of my News Feed was a picture that Luke was tagged in, with some gorgeous red head.  I squinted my eyes and leaned closer towards my laptop, quickly gasping at the picture, seeing him with his arm around her waist, his hand positioned low on her hip, and her holding up her left hand, showing a ring on that ever important finger.

"What?"  Elena asked, hearing my sharp intake of breath.

"Look at this!"  I quickly exclaimed, turning my laptop screen to face her.  Right as it faced her, my laptop died.  "No!  Dang it."  I leaned down, frantically searching for my power cord, to plug it in.

I grabbed my phone instead, and pulled up Facebook, scrolling quickly through my News Feed, looking for the picture.  It wasn't there, but then again, I can't figure out what the News Feed shows half the time, and why it shows other things if I reload it four seconds later.  I typed out Luke's name into the search bar and brought up his profile.  I scrolled down towards his wall, as Elena watched over my shoulder.  I stared at the screen in disbelief.  The picture was gone.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Lunch Date

*Author's Note:  Thank you everyone for the support and kind comments on my previous (personal) entry.  My apologies in advance for the shorter entry this evening.  It was a crazy weekend, as I had explained before, and I didn't have an opportunity to really work on my blog until about a half hour ago.  I'm tired and am heading to bed, but I'll put another one up tomorrow night.  So be expecting it!*

Lunch on Wednesday, I ate with my roommates in the dining commons.  It was a rarity that we all got to sit down and have a meal together, but especially during the day.  While sitting around chatting about Elena's wedding planning, I see Nellie approaching us.  I whisper, "Here she comes, guys."

Everyone stops talking as Nellie walks up wearing a two piece "swishy" jogging suit in aqua that has some bizarre square pattern on the shoulders of pink and black.  This clearly was made sometime in the 1980's.  I raise my eyebrows, quickly looking her up and down, wishing that What Not to Wear was still airing, because I would have the perfect nominee for them.  She smiles broadly at our table and loudly says, "Hi!  Did Madison asking everyone about my living situation conundrum?  Have you all discussed the probability of me being able to move in with you?"

My mouth might have dropped open slightly.  My interactions with Nellie have all been minimal, in the past.  However, I started trying to imagine living with someone who spoke like that all the time and I had to fight the urge to roll my eyes.  The silence became awkward, as no one responded right away, so I broke the ice, "Yes."  I tried my best.

I cleared my throat and began as I saw Maddie giving me a Look.  "Yeah, we talked about it, and we don't have any..."

Sarah quickly cut me off, giving me a side glance, "We would love for you to live with us."  Nellie clapped her hands excitedly.  Maddie informed Nellie that she would be sharing a room with her, and Sarah leaned over to me and hissed in my ear, "Not okay, Aleah."

I quickly mean-whispered back, "What?  All I was going to say is we didn't have any other options."

"That's so mean!"

I thought about how it sounded, whispering it out loud, and realized she was right.  But I didn't want to admit it, so I shrugged my shoulders in defeat and went back to eating.  I looked over at Elena to see she was listening to Maddie and Nellie talk, and was clearly trying not to laugh.  I looked over at the doors to the sitting area and saw Joe walking in.  "I'll be right back," I said hopping up, to go greet Joe.

I ran up behind him and tapped him on his shoulder.  He turned around and gave me a strong hug.  "Have fun last night?"

"I did.  What are you doing here?  You rarely eat in here."  Joe doesn't live on campus, and so he rarely eats in the dining commons.  The times he does are usually at night with people from the tennis team.

"You didn't hear?  We're getting a new tennis conditioning and technical adviser, for the teams.  I'm showing him around, and so we're stopping in for lunch.  I can introduce you when he gets out here.  He's from Mexico."

"When did this happen?"

"I don't know.  You know coach.  I guess they played together when they were in college, and he was looking to move back around this area, so he approached athletic director about a position for him.  Anyway, he's bringing in a top male recruit for the team, too.  I mean, which is fine, as long as he doesn't knock me down any positions."  He smiled teasingly at me.  Joe is the number one player for the men's team, and I really don't think he'd care.  But he knows that I have pride problems and love being number one.  "Oh, there he is."

I turned to see a dark haired, beautifully tanned male walking towards me.  His eyes were brown and friendly.  He was a few inches taller than me and smiled sweetly at us as he approached.  "Joe, is this your girlfriend?"  (Though, it really sounded like "Hoe, ees thees your geerlfriend?"  *Swoon*  I love accents.

Joe quickly said, "Oh, no, this is the one singles and doubles player for the women's team."

"Ah, Alayah!"  He stuck out his hand.

I grabbed it and shook firmly, and didn't bother correctly his pronunciation, because the way he said it may or may not have made my heart skip a beat.  I smiled goofily, "Hi."

Joe slightly shook his head and said, "Aleah, this is Pablo."

Although I wanted to stay and chat more, I knew that my roommates were waiting for me.  I excused myself from Joe and Pablo and went back to the table with the girls.  Nellie had left, and when I sat down, we resumed our conversation about Elena's wedding plans.  We all had a clear night that evening, so since Maddie and I had to head to class, we decided to have a roommate night after our respective practices were over.

As Maddie and I were heading to class, I sent Luke a quick text telling him I had plans that evening, but asked if he wanted to see each other the next night before I had to leave for Illinois the next day.

He responded almost immediately saying, "Of course."

Thursday, April 24, 2014


Dear Readers,

Firstly, I want to apologize that I haven't posted again since Monday.  I have some personal things going on right now that include an interview out of town tomorrow (which could lead to moving out of town), along with some medical issues with my child.  I promise to get a post up, ASAP.  I still have a lot of things to do tonight before leaving tomorrow, and so I cannot guarantee that it will happen tonight.  I will be gone all day/night tomorrow, and have out of town family coming in Saturday during the day.  So what I will promise is that sometime between now and Sunday I will have either one very long post up, or two separate posts.

Secondly, I've started receiving multiple comments about a posting schedule, or lack thereof.  I want to say that in a way I'm flattered that you all are enjoying the story and/or my writing so much that you are excited to keep reading and want consistency.  So thank you.  However, I unfortunately cannot commit to a posting schedule.  I've explained this to several comments before, but now I'll put it in a more public forum for those that have missed that.  I am a person of my word.  I would LOVE to give you all a consistent schedule, however, I know me, and I also know my life in its present state.  Due to all of the unknowns happening in my life and my work schedule (which at times includes being on-call), I cannot give a permanent schedule. So I don't want to say I will write and post at a certain time, and then not do it.  It isn't because I don't want to, but because I can't.  In addition to that, I write this blog because it is an outlet for me from a crazy life where I write about really serious, non-creative things every day.  My real life job is extremely stressful, and so I love writing something that allows me to "escape reality" for a little bit, no matter how small this might be.  Plus, me knowing myself and my history, if I give a set posting schedule, I will feel obligated to have to write, which may suck some of the joy out of it for me, and my posts may not be quality.  There is a reason I haven't added ads to my blog.  It's because I don't want this to feel like a job, or to make money off of it.  I want to write for me, and also for all of you.  And I want it to be enjoyable for all parties.

So, thank you, thank you, thank you, to those who continue to check back and who are patient with me.  I really do hope someday, I can give a consistent posting schedule, and stick to it.  Potentially after moving.  But for now, everyone will have to deal with my current commitment of 2-3 posts per week.  THAT I can do, and won't go back on (except maybe this week, but I explained that earlier).  I hope that is fair, and explains a little more as to why I don't have a schedule.  And if it isn't, I really am sorry.

But again, thank you, to everyone, for your kind comments and excitement, and for reading all about Aleah :)

Monday, April 21, 2014

Watchful Eye

At our matches in Indiana, we lost to both IU and Purdue.  I won in singles, so it was partially gratifying, but wholly disappointing.  Regarding Luke, we texted quite a bit and we spoke every day in the evening before going to bed, but nothing of substance.  We kept it light and avoided the topic of Thor.  He wanted to see me Monday night when we got back, but I told him I was going to be hanging out with Sarah and would see him on Tuesday.

Monday night when we got back, Sarah was there waiting for me.  I had called her when we were 20 minutes away so she'd be able to show up for me.  When I got into the car, I asked her how her leg was feeling with the torn labrum.  She had decided to try and make it through the rest of the season.  They had a track meet in Arkansas on Saturday, and they had come back yesterday.  She said it was a struggle and she didn't know if she'd make it.  She said she was considering backing out and having surgery sooner than later so she could start physical therapy so she could start throwing again sooner to ready herself for the following year.  I told her that no matter what decision she made, I would either be there for her when she woke up, or at as many of her meets as I could be.

We stopped and picked up some food to go and took it home, since I was tired from the drive.  We set up our food on the floor in the living room, surrounding ourselves with blankets and pillows.  We ate in silence for about half of the food, until I said, "So lay it on me, sista."

"So, don't get mad at me, but..."

I cut her off.  "Sarah.  You know anytime someone says that, it means they're going to get mad."

"I know."  She smiled.  "I was kidding.  But anyway, I don't really know Luke.  So I can't fully give a fair opinion of him.  But from what you told me, and have told me, I don't know what to think."

"Well, that's not helpful."

"No, listen.  He seems to really like you, and maybe he's just immature, but I don't think I'd like a guy who was my boyfriend to say that I make all the guys rock hard.  In front of his friends.  And then laugh.  I mean, maybe that's just him.  Or maybe you don't really care.  Plus, I'm still not 100 percent okay with you not remembering what happened the night you went out with him and his roommate."

"I guess I don't really care that he made the comment.  I thought it was funny and he was just joking around.  And I must have just had more to drink than I remember."

"But Aleah..."

"Stop.  Luke is a good guy.  Just get to know him.  Please?  You're my best friend and your opinion matters to me.  It really does.  I just think you haven't gotten to spend any time with him."

She sighed.  "Can I ask you something?"


"Why did you jump into a relationship with him, when you told me you were in love with Zach?  And you had just seen him?"

I winced when I heard his name, but then quickly shoved the pain deep down inside, again.  "I'm just trying to move on," I flatly stated.  "There's no guarantee about anything with him."  I was avoiding saying his name, but I looked down at my finger, twisting the ring around it, wistfully remembering the night he gave it to me.

"Did Luke ask about it?"

I knew without asking that she meant the ring.  "No.  I'm sure he's seen it, but maybe he doesn't care.  Or maybe he thinks I got it for myself."

"Aleah, I'm not trying to be a jerk."  Sarah's eyebrows were raised and she was looking at me insistently.  "I just want you to be happy.  And to be treated how you deserve."

I didn't say anything.  I didn't know what to say.  So Sarah then changed the subject.  "So there's this guy I like..."

My mood visibly changed then as I sat up quickly and said excited, "What?  Who?"  She started talking to me about a guy on the men's track team, who runs distance.  She said she thinks Maddie knows him pretty well.  She said that they have some mutual friends, and while in Arkansas, she got to speak with him quite a bit. 

"Did he ask you out?"

She scrunched her face up, appearing disappointed.  "No."  But she quickly added, "Not yet, anyway."

"Go get 'em girl!"  She laughed.  At that moment Maddie walked in.

"Aleah!  You're home!"  She skipped over and plopped down on the floor next to us.  We briefly caught up about our weekends, when the subject of Elena's wedding came up.

"So, we need to figure out the roommate situation," I said.

"We have to have those turned in by the end of the week."  Sarah added.

Maddie hesitantly started talking, "So, someone approached me about joining us, because they heard Elena was moving out."

Sarah and I both looked at Maddie and demanded, "Who."

"Nellie."  Sarah flailed her head back onto the seat of the couch and I grabbed Maddie's wrist.

"Maddie, noooooo!" I mock howled at her.

Nellie is a girl who is very nice, but extremely weird, and so socially awkward.  She tends to wear teddy bear sweatshirts, "mom" jeans, and not use contractions when she speaks, but uses words like splendid and joyous.  Plus she was very sheltered and is naive.  She lives across the hall from us, currently.  She is slightly mousy looking, and wears large round glasses.

"What did you tell her?"  Sarah asked, almost scared of the answer, it seemed.

"I told her I'd talk to you guys, because I didn't know if you had found anyone."

"Why doesn't she continue living with the girls she's currently living with?"  I asked curiously.

Maddie grimaced. "They kicked her out."


"Well, Nellie told me that a friend of theirs' who was abroad is coming back so they're having her move back in.  But I spoke with one of them, and they said that's half true.  She is coming back, and she is living with them again, but only because they begged her to replace Nellie."

I closed my eyes and shook my head.  "Please tell me we have other options."

Maddie and Sarah both said they didn't know anyone.  I offered to ask around on the tennis team.  Then I asked the question we were all thinking.  "So would we rather have Nellie live with us, or someone random they assign to us, and risk it being even worse or weirder?"

They both shrugged their shoulders.  I asked them to give me until Wednesday, and then we would decide.  They agreed.  Maddie said she would let Nellie know.

On Tuesday after classes, at practice, I started drilling all the girls on where they were living the following year.  Everyone had plans.  I attempted to think of any other possible options, but I didn't know of anyone.  Especially this close to having to turn in living preferences.  After practice, Joe asked if I wanted to grab dinner in the dining commons.  I agreed to, as I wanted to get his opinion on Luke, before seeing him.

After Joe and I got our food, we sat down on the edge of the dining commons, and I told him everything about Luke including the night where I couldn't remember anything, to the night before I left for Indiana.  I even told him about my trip to NYC with Zach, too.  I managed to not cry throughout the whole thing.  I showed him the ring Zach got me, and then I just stopped talking.

Joe took a few more bites, looking thoughtfully out the window.  "You know I love this time of year, right?"

I followed his gaze outside.  Although the sun was setting and it was getting darker, we could still see people walking around in light jackets, as it was getting warmer, overall.  I could see the buds on the trees starting to open up, and a lot more birds flying around, though fewer now since it was getting dark.  I looked back at him, smiling, assuming he was changing the subject.  Maybe he didn't have an opinion.

"Of course.  I do, too.  Spring and summer are my absolute favorite seasons."

He turned his head to look at me then, and frowned slightly.  "There is no guy that will ever make you whole.  You need to find a complement, not someone to complete you.  You need to be happy to be by yourself."

I looked at him confused, starting to get angry with him.  "Joe, that has nothing to do with Luke or Zach."

He shook his head at me.  "Yes, it does.  When was the last time you were single?  Not like, single for a little bit, but single where you didn't have any other guy, or one on the sideline waiting for you."

I rolled my eyes, but decided to appease him, thinking back.  "I guess maybe before Zach and I ever dated."

"So, 7 or 8 years ago?"

"Yeah, something like that," I replied, looking down sheepishly at my plate, playing with my food.

"Luke doesn't respect you."

"That isn't true!" I interjected.

"Aleah, stop, let me finish."  He sighed.  "He doesn't respect you how you deserve to be respected.  I would never say something like he did, about someone I was dating.  I wouldn't say it about you, and we aren't dating.  Zach is a great guy.  I only briefly met him, but he treats you like you deserve.  But he clearly knows that whether it will be in the future, now is not the right time.  You aren't okay with being alone, or at the very least, without Zach, and so you fill the void and the hurt with someone.  For example, did Derek treat you how you deserved?"

I knew the answer, and I shifted my eyes to look out the window, thinking it was a rhetorical question.

He continued, "You knew Derek treated you badly at times, but you still stayed with him, because you don't like being alone.  During your whole relationship with him, during the week, when you couldn't be with him, you made a lot of time for me and to hang out with me, since he was out of town.  You always have a male right there.  You were with Zach for a long time, it didn't work out, you filled that hole with Derek.  Zach reappeared, you kicked Derek to the curb, it didn't work out again, you're filling that hole with Luke."

"I'm sorry if you felt used."

"What?  That has nothing to do with what I'm saying.  That's what you got out of that whole thing?"

"Well, no, I was just saying."

He squinted at me.  "Aleah, until you know your worth and are okay with being alone, you will continue to fill your time with guys who don't treat you right.  Luke doesn't treat you right.  If he did, he wouldn't objectify you."  His face softened at this point.  "I've seen you at your best, and at your worst.  I've seen you smile, and cry.  You are beautiful, and kind hearted.  You deserve someone who sees who you really are."

I muttered a soft, "Thanks."  I didn't know what else to say, because I knew he was right about me.  However, I thought maybe he was wrong about Luke.  Maybe Luke just showed his affection differently.  He was sweet to me, and sarcastic.  If he didn't respect me, I'm sure I would know it.

As Joe and I were finishing eat, I saw someone approaching our table.  Luke.

Luke smiled at me, and sized up Joe.  He grabbed a chair and pulled it up.  "I'm not interrupting anything, am I?"

I smiled back.  "Nope!  We were almost done and I was about to call you and see what you were doing.  Luke, have you met Joe?"  He shook his head.  "Joe, this is my boyfriend, Luke.  Luke, this is Joe, he's on the tennis team with me."  They shook hands and exchanged pleasantries.  We all chatted briefly, Joe asking Luke about basketball.  Joe said they should get together sometime and shoot around, and Luke agreed.  I smile happily at them, hoping that my boyfriend could become friends with my best friend boy.  As we were all walking out together, I checked my phone and saw I had a missed call from my mom.  I excused myself while they were standing outside of Joe's car, and I walked a few car lengths away.

"Mom!  I'm so sorry, I've been meaning to get back in touch with you about coming home."

"You know we miss you."

"I know, I've just been so busy with school and working at the Racquet Club, and with practices and traveling for the team right now.  I'm sorry."

"It's okay.  Can you make it up this weekend?"

"We're leaving Friday for Illinois.  I won't be back until Monday."

I heard her sigh on the phone and then muffled talking.  I assumed she was speaking with my dad.

She returned, "When does tennis end?"

"April 20th is our last regular season match, and then it's tournament time.  But, even if we make it through tournament, which honestly isn't looking promising, the last day of tournament is April 27th."

"Alright.  Well, your dad and I will try to make it to your next home match.  We would fly out to Illinois this weekend, but we have some things going on."

"I understand.  My last two regular season matches are both home.  Then at the end of this month, I should be able to come home for dinner.  The week is just too busy right now.  Or, I can't remember for sure, but if I have a free evening the weekend after I'm in Illinois, maybe I can come home then?"

"We'd love that, dear."  My mom sounded distracted by this point. 

"Okay, well, I need to go, but I'll talk to you later."

"Right.  Love you."

"Love you, too.  Tell dad I love him, as well."

"Of course, bye."

I looked at my phone and frowned.  Something had seemed off with my mom the past several times I had spoken with her, but I couldn't quite place what it was.  I shrugged my shoulders to myself, then, and walked over to Luke.  He and Joe said bye to each other.  I gave Joe a hug, and he squeezed me tightly.  Luke grabbed my hand and we walked to where he was parked next to me.  He suggested we see a late movie, and I agreed.  He told me to go home and change, and he'd pick me up in a half hour.

I got into my car and started it, to pull away, and I saw Joe still standing next to his car, watching me.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Best. Friend. Ever.

"Uh..." I started stammering, immediately.

Luke adjusted to look at me, and stopped moving.  "What?"

"We, um..." I put my hand on his chest and started pushing him upwards.  "We need to talk about that," I said nodding my head down towards his insanely large member.  I don't know if it was my lack of seeing real life penises (I had only ever had sexual experiences with Zach and Derek), or maybe they were just abnormally small, but there was no way I was about to let that monstrosity near me.

He smiled mischievously at me and said, "About Thor?"

"You named your penis Thor?" I said in disbelief.  "Don't get me wrong.  Apparently it is a very accurate name."

He laughed.  "I'll take it slow and be gentle."

"Luke, there is no way.  Firstly, I don't care what speed you take it, that is not fitting in me.  Secondly, I have to play two matches this weekend, and I don't know I'll have enough time to heal from that.  Thirdly, just no."

He looked defeated but obliged.  He rolled off of me and grabbed some sweatpants and pulled them on, sans underwear.  I could see the outline of his massive member through the pants.  I sat up and apologized to him.

He waved me off.  "No, don't apologize.  I understand.  We'll just have to go slowly and I'll have to work you up to it," he said as he started waving two fingers in the air and smiling at me again.

I raised my eyebrows and nodded once.  "So, if you don't mind me asking, do you know exactly how long you are?"  I flushed slightly, feeling embarrassed for even asking.

He seemed to puff up his chest a little as he said, "Nine."

I then looked away and busied myself finding my clothes.  He seemed to get the hint and change the subject.  "What time do you leave in the morning?"

"I don't remember exactly.  I'm going to have to check the papers again when I get home."

"And when do you get back?"

"Sometime Monday evening, I think."

"I might miss you when you're gone."

I finally relaxed a little and looked at him and smiled.  "I may miss you, too.  But I'll let you know the verdict of that."

I had finished dressing at that point.  He hugged me and kissed me deeply and walked me to the door.  I left and told him I'd text him tomorrow when we got to Indiana.


I pushed myself up into a push-up position and then sitting, hanging my legs off the bed.  By the time I'd gotten home the previous evening, Sarah was already asleep.  I looked at her bed now and saw it empty, in the glow of the starting to rise sun through out blinds.  I frowned.  She wasn't a super late sleeper, but she wasn't usually up this early.

I padded out to the living room area, but it was empty.  I turned to head back to the bedroom when I heard a key in the door.  I stopped and turned to see Sarah coming in holding a bag from Panera Bread and with a cup in one hand and another one tucked between her arm and body.  "Oh!"  She exclaimed, looking startled.

"What are you doing?"  I whispered, knowing that Maddie and Elena were sleeping in the other bedroom.

"Surprising you," she said, smiling as she turned on the light.  I walked over to her as she put everything down on the kitchen counter and wrapped her in a tight hug. 

"You're the best."

She hugged me back.  "Okay, stop now," she said pulling away.  "We need to get you packed and out the door.  I checked your papers and you need to be at the bus in 35 minutes."

I looked at the clock and saw it said 6:35 a.m.  "Got it."

As I was eating my spinach and artichoke souffle, I was attempting to get ready, while Sarah was packing my bags.  I told her where to find my tennis gear and other basics to throw in my duffel bag.  I threw on sweatpants and a sweatshirt, washed my face and brushed my teeth.  I opted to not wear any makeup, as we were just going to be traveling all day.  I finished my food and went into the bedroom to check my bags and grab my pillow and favorite blanket.  I stuffed the blanket in my pillow's case.  I made sure I had all the necessities, toiletries, outfits to wear out to dinner after matches, and travel clothing for the way back.  I had my two tennis outfits, shoes, sports bras, and racquets.  I grabbed a couple sweat rags and a water bottle and stuff them in my tennis bag, too.  I yawned and looked at Sarah, who looked sleepy, too.  "I think that's everything," I said.

"Alright, let's go!"

"What?  Go back to bed!"

"No, I wouldn't be your bestie if I didn't drive you there, would I?  I'll come get you when you get back, too.  I'm going to miss your face!"

"What would I do without you?"

"You'd be late."


As we left and made the 10 minute drive to where the bus was waiting, I quickly told Sarah about my night the previous night.  I told her about dinner, the comments made, and finished with, "and not only is it nine inches long, but it was the biggest round thing ever.  There was no way that was coming near me."

I looked over to catch her reaction after my quick, long-winded rant, to see she was slightly frowning, but not saying anything.  "What?"

"Aleah, I really want to give you my opinion, but I don't have time."  I looked out the window to see she was pulling up beside the Greyhound.  "You want me to call you later, or just talk when you get home?"

I thought for a second.  "Let's just talk when I get home.  It's not like I'll be seeing Luke anytime before then, anyway."

"Will do.  I'll miss you!  Have fun!  Good luck! Love you!"  She quickly spouted as I was opening the door.  I leaned over and gave her a side hug and kissed her cheek.

"Love you!"

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


My alarm started beeping Friday morning, signaling it was time to get up and start packing so I could make it to the bus to head to Indiana.  I was so sleepy, as my date with Luke ran longer than we had planned.  I closed my eyes again and slammed my face down into my pillow with a sigh, thinking back to the previous night.

I had arrived to Luke’s house close to 7, and knocked on the door loudly.  The house the guys share is relatively big, and I wanted to make sure someone heard me.  I heard thumping, as someone was running down the stairs.  The door flung open to Nate standing there.  He half smiled at me and opened the door wide, flourishing his hand towards the kitchen.  I turned my head to say hi and thank him and saw him staring at my butt.  I stopped dead in my tracks and fully turned my body to face him.  “Excuse me.”  I stared at him blankly.

“Oh, you never need to excuse yourself for THAT.”  He slammed the door shut and took off up the stairs, taking them two at a time, as I stood there glaring at the back of his head.  Immature.  I shook my head and started towards the kitchen.  As I neared, the smell took over and was so mesmerizing.

Luke was towering over the kitchen counter, hunched over, cutting something.  I quietly walked up behind him and placed my hands on his back.  He jumped and whipped around, brandishing a butcher’s knife.  It was my turn to jump backwards.  “Ah!” I yelped.

“Aleah!  Shit.  Never sneak up on a man wielding a knife!”  He chuckled and bent down to give me a kiss on the forehead and turned back around to his task at hand.  “Have a seat at the table,” he called out over his shoulder.  “Drink?”

“Water’s fine.  Whatcha’ makin’?”

“My specialty.”

“Which is?”

“Salad, gourmet burgers, and homemade parmesan garlic fries!  And by homemade, I mean, I took them out of a bag and fried them, but added the parm and garlic.  That counts, right?”  He quickly looked over his shoulder and grinned at me before turning around to continue chopping.  I leaned over to peer around his frame at what he was cutting up.  Carrots.  I assumed for the salad. 

“Of course that counts!  And sounds delicious.  I’m hungry, so I totally cannot wait to eat!”

“You’re always hungry.”

I nodded my head, “You’re right.  I can’t deny it!”  I saw he had 6 hamburger patties laying next to the stove, still raw.  “Are you expecting me to eat half of those?”

“Oh, no.  You can if you want, but Nate and one of my other housemates, Charlie, is joining us.  Do you know Charlie?  He’s on the basketball team with me.”

I frowned, thinking.  “Hmm...  I may know him if I see him, but I’m not always the best with faces and names.”

“You don’t mind they’re joining us, do you?”

I wasn’t thrilled about it, but I wasn’t about to say so.  I had assumed it was going to be just he and I when he had asked me to come here for dinner.  “Nope!  I’m sure it’ll be fun.”  But then I cringed, remembering Nate ogling me.  I felt a piece of my hair falling down, at that point, and excused myself to the bathroom, to fix it.  I went in there and looked in the mirror, pulling a bobby pin out of my hair.  I had taken chunks of my hair and twisted them, pinning them up the back of my head, so the ends were sticking up spiky-like.  It was a twisted mess, but I loved it.  Something easy to do with having to shower quickly and get over here after practice. 

I went back out to the kitchen, but Luke wasn’t there.  I looked through the kitchen window and saw him standing right outside the back door, putting the patties on the grill.  I smiled to myself, imagining how delicious this was probably going to taste.  I just hoped he cooked them well.  Doesn’t get much worse than dried out, overly cooked beef.

I grabbed the glass (actually, more like faded plastic cup) of water Luke had poured for me, and I headed out the back, where he seemed to be carefully tending his meat.  I was debating whether to tell Luke about Nate’s perverted greeting, but decided not to.  I figured college boys, will be college boys.  Luke asked me if I was excited to be traveling to Indiana.

I shrugged my shoulders and said, “Sitting in a bus for about 12 hours doesn’t sound fun to me.  But, I always like traveling.”

“You don’t fly?”

“Hey, we aren’t as well loved as the basketball team,” I said winking at him.

He smiled and flipped the burgers.  “Cheese?”

“Is that even a valid question?”

“Yes, ma’am.”  He laid slices of cheese on all of the patties.  “Can you head in and holler for the guys?”

I went inside and walked to the stairs, slowly.  I felt weird hollering up the stairs for some guys who I barely knew.  I stood at the base of the stairs contemplating whether or not to just go up there or yell when Luke walked over.  “What are you waiting for?”  He looked at me strangely.  “NATE!  CHARLIE!  GET YO ASSES DOWN HERE, STAT!”  He yelled nice and loudly.

I smiled sheepishly at him, “Sorry, and thanks.”

He gave my butt a tap and we headed back into the kitchen area when I heard the guys come barreling down the stairs.  “Mmm... This smells great, mom!”  Nate grinned devilishly at Luke as he teased him.

Luke punched Nate on the arm and then pushed him backwards from grabbing a plate and said, “Ladies, first.”  I walked up to grab a plate and start fixing up my burger and grab a salad and some fries when Luke continued, “Come on Charlie, that included you!”  I heard some rough housing start behind me and turned to see the guys pushing each other around.  A very tall, very dark man, whom I’m assuming was Charlie, had Luke in a headlock, and Nate was trying to take them both down.  I laughed.  They seemed like fun guys to be around.  I hadn’t met Charlie before, but he did look familiar.  And although I had met and hung out with Nate when with Luke a few times, I didn’t know him well.  I sat down at the table and the guys started getting their food on their plates.  Luke sat next to me and Nate across from me.  As Charlie was walking up he said, “Aleah, right?”  I nodded.  “I like your hair!  It makes me want to call you Medusa!”

I half smiled, “Thanks?”  I didn’t know if that was really a compliment or not.

Then Luke started to chuckle and said, “Yeah, I like that.  You know why we call you Medusa?”

I raised my eyebrows, and started to say because of my hair, but Luke cut me off to say, “Because you make all the guys rock hard!”  And Luke started guffawing, and the other two joined in.  Nate had his head thrown back laughing hysterically, and Charlie dramatically dropped off his chair to the side and was lying on the floor, holding his stomach.  Luke was looking at me and nodding his head, beaming.  I pursed my lips together, trying to hold back a smile, and felt my cheeks turn red.  I put my forehead down onto my hand and started giggling.  Soon I was laughing so hard tears were running down my face.

“You guys are ridiculous,” I squeaked out between gasps of laughter.

Luke said, “Funny because it’s true!”

The rest of dinner went by without too much teasing.  The guys just laughed and joked with each other.  They spared me the rest of the time, which I was thankful for, as I was embarrassed enough by that one comment.  Though flattered, I suppose.  Nate and Charlie offered to clean up, since Luke had made them dinner, and they insisted I not help, as I was a guest.  Though Charlie added, “For now.  Your third visit is your last one as a guest!”  I grinned and thanked them for being so gracious.

Luke dragged me up to his room, stating he knew we didn’t have a lot of time because Nate would want back in, and I needed to leave to get up early in the morning.  He locked the bedroom door and led me to the bed.  While still standing, he peeled my sweatshirt up and over my head, throwing it on the floor.  He took my t-shirt off, too.  He lifted me swiftly, seeming as if I weighed nothing to him, and laid me on the bed, him coming down on top of me.  He softly murmured, “Ever since you surprisingly stripped in front of me, I couldn’t get the image of you out of my head.”

“Is that a good thing?” I teasingly asked.

He thrusted his hips against me, and I could feel how aroused he was, already.  “What do you think?”

I raised my head, stretching up as he was hunched over slightly, being so much taller than me.  I wove my fingers through his hair and pushed his head down to mine and kissed him.  The kissing was immediately passionate, as our tongues explored each other’s mouths.  He stopped kissing me and trailed down to my neck, while reaching down and unbuttoning my jeans.  He removed his lips from my body just long enough to pull my jeans off.  While he was still off of me, he unbuttoned his and pulled them down, revealing boxer briefs, which seemed to be barely containing his erection.  He threw off his shirt and leaned back down, grinding his pelvis into mine, only the thin layers of my panties and his boxer briefs keeping us apart.  He started kissing me again, reaching around behind me to unclasp my bra.  He got it pretty quickly, and I let go of him long enough to pull it off of me and throw it to the ground.  He pressed his chest against mine, kissing me deeper.  I was tingling, and my desire for him was growing more with his thrust of his hips.  “I want you.  Now.”

He paused, smiling at me.  He got up on his knees and pulled my panties down.  He took that moment to look up and down my body, seeming to savor every inch.  “Mm,” was the sound he made as he smiled.  He fully removed my panties and then started pulling down his underwear.  I curled my knees up as he positioned himself on top of me again and was rubbing his hardness where it felt so good.  I closed my eyes and rolled my head upwards, imagining what this was going to feel like. 

And then I made the mistake of opening my eyes and looking down.

Friday, April 11, 2014

No Regrets

Tuesday evening, Elena wanted to go look at flowers for the wedding.  Sarah and Maddie already had plans, and her parents weren’t driving in, her sister had after school activities, Jeff didn’t care about the flowers, and so that left me.  I’m kind of with Jeff on this.  I’m not really a flowers person, either.  I agreed to go, but I was dreading it deep down, although I didn’t want to admit it to Elena.  I upheld my official bridesmaid duty and went and told her what I like and didn’t like.  She ended up picking a bouquet for the girls that had a wide variety of flowers in it, but among them were stargazer lilies.  Now, I have to say, although I don’t like flowers in general, there are something about stargazer lilies that I absolutely love.  And when I see them, they relax me.  The only other flower that makes me feel that way are lilacs.  Those, however, are due to my mother having them around the house, and breathing in their aroma during the spring/summer, when the windows were open.  They take me home.  I digress...

So the bouquet she picked out was pretty, for a group of flowers.  Afterwards, we picked up food to go and went back to the apartment to eat it.  We sat around eating, watching Modern Family, and joking and laughing.  I told Elena about my trip to New York and she told me about her wedding planning.  She started talking about how blessed she was, and she started crying.  I moved over next to her and put my arm around her and we were side hugging.  She asked me how I felt about how everything happened with Zach, and where I was going with Luke.  I leaned my head down on her shoulder and sighed.

“I don’t know.  I’m devastated about Zach.  I feel so... broken.  But Elisabeth, you know, the girl who I told you about who spilled coffee on me?  One of the last things she said to me on the phone on Sunday was ‘no regrets’ and I think she’s right.  Even though my heart may not be in it completely, I think I need to keep talking to Luke for now.  There are no guarantees.”

“Have you slept with him?”

“No.  I mean, at least I’m pretty sure I haven’t.”  I felt her shift a little bit, and figured she was looking at me funny.

“Um... are you saying you couldn’t feel...”

“Oh!  No!  No.  I have no idea.  I haven’t seen... or felt... him...  Ugh... Awkward.”

“Why don’t you know, then?”

“It’s kind of a weird story...”  I told Elena all about the night with Luke, where I woke up not remembering a lot.  I sat up, to look at her as I was speaking, to gauge what she was thinking.

She frowned at me.  “That doesn’t sound like you Aleah.  How well do you know Luke?”

I shifted my eyes upward, thinking.  “For a couple of months, I think.  But he seems like a really good guy.  Why?  What are you suggesting?”

“Nothing.”  She looked like she wanted to say something, but then said closed her mouth, and opened it again to say, “I just want you to be careful is all.”

I furrowed my brow at her.  “I know.  I think you’d like Luke if you got to know him.”

She smiled weakly at me and nodded her head.  We went back to reminiscing on funny stories from our childhood and watching Modern Family.  However, what she said lit a small fire of doubt about Luke’s character.  I pushed it down and out, though, because she doesn’t know him like I do, yet.

On Wednesday, I went to my morning class, which was the first time I had seen Luke since before I left for New York.  He showed up late to class, and there were no seats by me, so he sat diagonal and to my upper left of where I was sitting. He poked my shoulder and I turned to see him holding a small piece of paper between his pointer and middle finger.  I grabbed it and opened it up slowly. In Luke’s sloppy handwriting was written:  I’ve missed your face!  In spite of being in class, and not being entirely sold on the idea of Luke, I smiled.  I turned to look at him quickly while the professor wasn’t facing the class and gave him a little grin, and he winked at me.  My heart fluttered slightly.  Oh good, I still had emotions left in me, after all!

After class Luke waited for me by the door and put his arm around me, escorting me.  We came across an empty lecture hall and he pulled me inside, shutting the door behind me.  He pushed me against the wall, pressing his body against mine.  He bent down and kissed me deeply.  While I kissed him back, his tongue felt foreign in my mouth.  It felt a little off.  It just wasn’t Zach.  I pushed the thought of Zach out of my mind and focused on Luke.  He put his hand just under my arm pit, grazing the side of my breast, and ran his hand down to my waist and let it linger there.  He pulled away quickly, smiled at me, and said, “Welcome home.”  Then he walked out the door.  I shook my head, shocked at what just happened.

I made it through the rest of the day of classes, and practice, my mind wandering as I was gearing up for my outing with Luke.  He was picking me up, and we were going to a pub to eat and have a couple of beers.  It had been chilly, so after I showered, I braided my hair and threw on skinny jeans, high heeled knee high boots, and an oversized sweater.  I heard a knock on the door and went to answer it.  Luke was standing there wearing a zip-up hoodie, jeans, and some Converses.  After I finished sizing him up, I saw he was doing the same to me.  “I feel overdressed,” I said.

“I was about to tell you I feel underdressed.”  He grinned back at me.  I shrugged my shoulders and we left.

We chatted about practices and school on the drive to the pub.  After arriving, we decided to order appetizers only, and I got a Blue Moon while he ordered a Killians.  I wrinkled my nose at him. 

“You don’t like Killians?”  He looked offended as he said this.

“Gross,” was my response.

“How was New Yahk?”  His New York fake accent was terrible.

I rolled my eyes.  “It was fun.  I got a lot of good shopping and sight-seeing done.”  I had decided already to keep my details quiet, because frankly, it was wasn’t his business, nor did I want to rehash them with him.  I quickly tried to change the subject, “How was your spring break?” 

“Oh it was good.  I got a lot of relaxing and studying done.”  He leaned back against the chair, spreading his long legs to surround me and my chair, resting one hand holding his beer, and running his hand through his hair.  “I had considered going home when you mentioned you weren’t going to be around, but using the gas wasn’t worth it.”

“I see.”  The appetizers arrived then, quickly thankfully, and we started eating.  I was so hungry due to having practiced and not eaten anything since lunch.

As I was stuffing a chip with spinach and artichoke dip on it into my mouth, Luke asked me, “I don’t want to sound all cliché and stuff, but where do you see this going?”

I tried to keep my face as neutral as possible, and slowed my chewing down, to give me more time to think of exactly what I wanted to say.  But before I could respond, he continued.  “I’m not trying to put you on the spot, but here’s what I’m thinking.  I really like you a lot.  And I know we weren’t exclusive, so whatever you’ve done up to this point, is fine.  I don’t want you to see anyone else anymore, though.  I do want to be exclusive.  I want you to myself.”  He was leaning forward at this point with a serious look on his face, and staring at me intensely.  My jaw slightly dropped as he was talking.  He was so straight-forward.

“So let me get this straight.  What you’re trying to say is you want to make this Facebook official?” I teased him and smiled.

His face relaxed.  “Yes and no.”  I tilted my head sideways and looked at him questioningly.  “I mean, yes, I want to make it official, but I’m not all about social media.  I like to keep my relationships private, so I really don’t want it ‘Facebook official’ per se.”  He used air quotes around Facebook official.  I bristled immediately.  I’m always so suspicious of people that private.

“Did you drug me when we went out before I left?”  I couldn’t help it.  Since my conversation with Elena, I needed to get it off my chest.

The smile left his face and he simply stated, “No.”  We sat there looking at each other in silence for a few minutes.  Then he said, “Why would you ask that?”

I explained to him about how I couldn’t remember anything, and that wasn’t like me.  I told him about discussing that with a couple of my friends, and how they agreed with me.  I told him I just needed to ask, if we were going to be taking our relationship to the next level, because I’m over honest and wouldn’t be able to let it go until I said it.

He sighed.  “Aleah, I did not drug you.  If I had, don’t you think I would’ve taken full advantage of you?”
“How do I know you didn’t?”

He narrowed his eyes at me and smiled widely then.  “Trust me, you’d know.”  I shook my head and rolled my eyes then.  He reached across the table and grabbed my hands.  “So what do you say?”

I took a deep breath, thinking to myself Elisabeth’s words to me:  No regrets.  I smiled tentatively, pushing the lingering thoughts and feelings of Zach to the back of my mind and said, “Well, I think you should’ve done it the right way and passed me a note in class earlier that actually said ‘Will you be my girlfriend?  Check yes or no’, but despite that missed opportunity at greatness, yes, I will be your girlfriend.”  He beamed at me then, and squeezed my hand. 

We sat around talking and joking, and having a couple more beers each.  By the time we left, it was around 11:30 p.m., and we decided to call it a night, based on having classes the next day.  We made plans to see each other briefly the following night after my practice.  He said he would make me dinner at his apartment and promised to not have a late night, since I was leaving Friday morning for Indiana and wouldn’t be back until Monday evening.