Tonight was a big night. A night that I prepared for for weeks. A night that every man fears, but goes through anyway because it is a night that defines his very manhood. Yes, it is THAT night - the night of the first date.
For weeks, I've watched her, knowing deep in my heart that I wanted to be with her. From the curve of her elegant neck to the gentle, pealing bells of her laugh, I knew. So I watched and I waited for the courage that seemed to elude me.
That is, until one day it just happened. I was watching her, like always, and somehow, by some unknown force of nature, I found myself asking her the fateful question that led to this night: Would you like to have dinner with me sometime?
For the next few days, I fretted and I sweat buckets. I had mixed feelings, alternating between regretting my bravado and congratulating myself for daring to go after my lady love. When tonight finally came, I checked my breath 20,000 times, used the strongest deodorant I could find, put on my best - and only - button-down shirt, and even wore the only pair of underwear I owned without holes (just in case).
I like to think that tonight was quite successful, not the disaster I was dreading. So I knocked down the plate of cocktail shrimps that the waiter was carrying, and I had a piece of broccoli stuck in my teeth while I laughed at a story she was telling. But it wasn't so bad. I like to think that I made her laugh. I like to think that I was the perfect gentleman, that I just took her on the best date imaginable. Yes, I'd like to think so, and maybe, just maybe, she thinks so, too.
So here we are, walking side by side as I take her home. We chatted non-stop from the restaurant, but for the past couple of blocks, we've been quiet. I wonder what she's thinking? I know what I'm thinking: Should I hold her hand? Should I kiss her? Should I suggest a nightcap?
She suddenly stops in front of a door and turns to me. She thanks me for a lovely night. I lean over to kiss her on the cheek, but in that second, she turns her head and I catch her lips. And there, on her doorstep, we kissed. In that one, brief moment when our lips were connected, the stars exploded millions of miles away. Somewhere in the world, someone was laughing, crying, and maybe even dancing. None of these mattered. None of these mattered because she was in my arms and I was kissing her.
It might have been millions of years later, or just a few seconds, but much too soon, she pulls away. She gives me a smile - the same smile that has left me gasping for breath since the very first time I saw it. She puts the key in her door's lock, and steps inside. Then she turns to me and said: Shut the door when you come in.
So I did.