I set up my computer and notebooks in front of me. The sound echoed through the quiet library. Oops, I winced. I looked around the room and stood up. The only thing on my mind was coffee and trying to figure out how long I would be at the library for the night. Two papers, an online assignment… What was that other thing? I stepped up to coffee bar. Latte or iced coffee… I gave my order to the barista and stepped aside for the next person. Gah, it’s going to be a long night… Oh, that’s mine. I said thank you to the barista and headed back to my table.
It had been an hour and my eyes were already hurting. I cracked my back and took the last sip from my coffee. I’m going to need another one of those. I decided to go down in another fifteen minutes. The time went by much slower than I had hoped, but on the upside I’d gotten a couple of pages done in the past hour.
I walked down the stairs and turned toward the coffee bar intending to grab one more coffee before I put all my focus into my work. Oh my…
I stopped mid step and took in a sharp breath. Who is that? Standing by the coffee bar telling the barista his order, stood the most handsome man I’d ever seen. I forced myself to keep walking. Stop staring! He is going to notice if you keep looking at him like that, I chided myself. I stood behind him and tried to calm my heart down. He can probably hear my heart thudding against my chest. He paid for his snack and started to step aside so I could give my order.
“Ouch!” Pain went through my side as his elbow jammed into my ribs followed by his heavy foot landing on my toes. Why did I wear sandals today? The man whirled around and I felt my heart stop as his eyes met mine.
“I am so sorry, I didn’t realize we were standing so close. Are you okay?” He was even more handsome up close. His eyes were a deep hazel and his dark beard fit the shape of his face perfectly. His thick hair was slightly messed up and it took everything in me to not reach up and fix it.
“I-I’m alright. Might have a bruise in the morning but it’s okay.” I forced a sly smile and a laugh. He smiled back and the tenseness in his demeanor vanished and he laughed at my joke. I wanted to melt at the sound of his voice.
“Well the least I can do is buy you a coffee for your trouble.” He smiled at me again. Don’t you dare swoon, he is just a guy. I looked at him and smiled back. A really, really attractive guy.
“I guess that’s the least you can do.” I turned back to the barista we had been ignoring and ordered an iced coffee. He smiled and handed her a five.
“You can keep the change.”
“Thank you, and what’s the name for the coffee?” She asked. I glanced at him and then back to the girl in front of me.
“Haley.” I thanked her again and stepped off to the side with the man who had just paid for my coffee.
“Haley.” He said slowly. I looked up as he looked down at me. “I’ve always liked that name.” He said with a smile. I felt my heart racing as heat rushed to my cheeks. I looked away and tucked my hair behind my ear. When I looked back he was still looking at me. I racked up my courage and responded, “I’m pretty fond of it, too.” That made him chuckle.
“You know my name, but I still don’t know yours.” He started to answer but just then the barista called out, “Hot chocolate for Carson.” He stepped forward and thanked her before returning to his spot beside me.
“Carson, huh?” He laughed and a smile crossed my face.
“My parents thought it was a good name I guess.”
“I like it.” I said as the barista called my name. I picked up my coffee and turned back to him. His gaze made my neck and cheeks burn. I looked away.
“Would you like to grab dinner on Tuesday night?” His question took me by surprise and I felt my heart pounding again. Oh my gosh, yes! Yes! Yes! Yes! I felt my smile growing. He just kept looking at me till I realized that I hadn’t given him an answer.
“Oh, yes. Yeah. I would like that.” He face lit up and I wanted to swoon again. He asked for my number and I happily obliged. Before we parted ways, he asked, “Am I allowed to talk to you before then?”
Oh my heart!
“Yea I guess that is alright.” I winked at him and walked away. It was all I could do to not turn around, but if I had, then he would have seen me grinning like a little school girl. Can it be Tuesday already?