Short Stories, Writing

Once in a while

Once in a while

It’s crowded at the train station here in Cambridge, people moving towards their destination. Some of them are more in a hurry than others. I am, thank god, not in a hurry and I’m going to get some lunch before I catch my train. I’m going to London for a blind date. A friend of mine, Luca, decided to set us up. She’s always getting me a date, or telling me I should get one. She means well, but sometimes I’m not so sure if I even want to go on these dates. Once in a while, I give it a try sometimes though. So now I’m going to London and my date, Pete, will show me around and we’ll have some coffee or something. I’m sure it’ll be fine.

I get to the shop and order a coffee and get a croissant. My stomach is growling.
“That’ll be 4.30,” the cashier says. I hand her 5 pounds and tell her to keep the change.
“Thanks!” she answers and I turn to walk away.
The second I take a step forward, a guy runs into me. He first hits my arm which has the coffee cup in its hand and then crashes further into me. I lose my balance and fall to the ground.
The guy glances at me, sitting on the ground, and mumbles a sorry before moving on. What. A. Jerk. “Great,” I tell myself. Just what I needed for a blind date.

“Are you okay?” A tall guy asks me. I look at myself, the whole front of my blouse is covered with coffee that I won’t be able to clean until I’m home. I don’t even have a jacket to cover it up and when I look down, I notice I’ve dropped my croissant.
“Yeah, guess so,” I say even though my blind date hasn’t even started and it’s already a disaster. He stretches out his hand to help me stand up.
“Thanks.” I’m on my feet again and look at the guy. His hair is blonde, short and his green eyes light up as he smiles.
“That guy sure was in a hurry.” “You think?” I joke and we both laugh.

“You need anything? Let me get you some napkins.” I shake my head. “No, I’m fi-” He’s already gone, didn’t wait for me to answer. I tug at my blouse. It’s totally soaked.
“Here you go.” He says while handing me the napkins. I start to try and dry my blouse. While holding the napkins against my chest and stomach to let them soak up the coffee. I realize the guy is still standing in front of me. This is becoming kind of awkward.

“Uhm… I’m gonna head to the toilets and…, thanks for the help.” I stuttered and he smiled, again with those green eyes lighting up. As I look into those eyes, the realization comes that I really need to call Pete.
“No problem.” He answers and I head to the toilets. When I’m there, I stand in front of the mirror and look at the damage done to my blouse. Luckily, I’m wearing a tank top under it. Otherwise, the world could’ve appreciated my pink flowery bra.
I unbutton my blouse, take it off and hold it out in front of me. The whole front is brown. There’s not much I can do as I don’t want to soak it with water in here. In conclusion, I should’ve brought a jacket.

I walk back outside and call Pete. After waiting a couple of seconds, he picks up. “Uhm hi.” He says. I notice a bit of awkwardness in his voice.
“Hi, sorry to call you, but I’m actually going to run late,” I say.
“Oh,” I hear on the other end of the line.
“Yeah, I’m really sorry, but one guy bumped into me and I’m all covered in coffee.”
“I don’t think we’ll be able to do everything though, go through London and stuff.” He mumbles and there’s an angry tone in his voice.
“I’m sorry, but this isn’t really my fault.” Is this guy for real?
“We should probably plan it another time.” He says with this blaming tone still present.
“I guess. I’ll talk to you later.” “Bye.” Why did Luca set me up with him?

I sit down on a bench and start texting Luca. ‘Blind date cancelled, someone bumped into me and I’m having a coffee disaster. Pete didn’t take it that well, why did you set me up with him?!’
I should probably get home, but I think I’ll get something to eat first. My stomach is screaming for food at the moment. I’m very aware of the coffee stain on my blouse as I walk up to the shop once again.
I get a sandwich with salmon this time, not a croissant. I don’t want to jinx anyone bumping into me and making me drop my croissant again. When I turn to leave the station, I hear a familiar voice. “You still here?”

I turn back around and there he is. The green-eyed blonde guy who helped me. “You are too, I see. Still getting napkins for every girl who gets coffee on her blouse?” He laughs and shakes his head.
“No, I only do that once a while.”
“Right,” I say laughing.
“I’m sorry if this is weird because we don’t know each other. But would you like to get some coffee sometime?” He suddenly asks. I smile. He is cute and nice. Even though I don’t know what Luca will think of me, ditching her date and immediately getting another. Still, I want to say yes.
“By the way, what’s your name?” He asks while I’m thinking of an answer to his first question.
“My name is Lucy,” I say and continue. “And yes, I would like that,” I answer his first question. Funny how these things can go, isn’t it?

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