She said we were only friends and that I shouldn't expect anything more to come from it but I didn't know whether to believe her or not.
You can blame my confusion upon our having slept together on a number of different occasions. The first time it happened was a surprise to both of us or so I had thought. Conversation with a dear friend of the fairer sex suggested that there might have been more planning involved than I knew.
"We know within moments of meeting you whether you might have the right stuff to end up in our beds. But there are a million different things that can make or break that for you."
I laughed and told her I thought the million different things was the biggest crock I have ever heard of but admitted I had learned to be relatively silent.
"Silence can be your friend. You don't want to be too quiet because that can wreck your chances, but too much talking can kill it for you too. There was a guy in my physics class I was really hot for. One night I was determined to make things happen and then he just killed my mood with stupid comments."
Well I must not have said anything really stupid nor done anything really offensive on the day in question because two hours of studying for a history midterm led to the best seven minutes of her life..
Ok, I can't say for certain that it was the best seven minutes of her life but the moment we share was short enough to me to be somewhat embarrassed and obvious enough for her to smile and say it was ok.
A quick nap followed and redemption was earned later but that wasn't enough to keep us from going our separate ways. It wasn't for lack of effort on my part, she just wasn't interested. I chased and pursued for a while and then gave up because I wasn't getting anywhere.
Lack of pursuit led to more interest and another moment shared in the blankets. This time was far different.I was much more comfortable but she seemed far more distant and I wondered if I was pinch hitting for someone else.
Time passed again and there were a few shared moments but nothing to write home about. Graduation came and went and we forgot about each other and things might have stayed that way had it not been for a party.
The food and drinks were good but the company was not so we left and wandered around laughing about how unexpected it had been to bump into each other.
Midway through our walk I pulled her into my arms and kissed her hard. For a moment she kissed me back and then stopped.
"I want to, but I am involved with someone."
I nodded my head and walked her to her car. Ten minutes later we came up for air long enough for her to politely tell me to go. She wanted to go farther but she was involved. This was fun. It was good. It was chemical. It was too much and it was over.
It was a bad date movie being played out in real life. Frustrated and flustered I watched her give me a half-hearted smile and a "take care of yourself" as she drove away.
For three days I spent my free time staying busy so that I wouldn't think about her. She said she couldn't and that she was involved. There were lots of other women, why try to catch the one I couldn't have.
Day four came and I had had enough of wondering and wanting. I did some research, found her telephone number and called her.
"We are just friends. That is all we can be."
Those words echoed in my head.
"If I hadn't been a gentleman you wouldn't have stopped me. You would have gone with the moment...gladly.
There was a long pause and then a response.
"You are probably right, I would have. But is that really how you want me. Do you want the sort of mercy moment that some girls give guys?"
I didn't know how to respond to that. Was it a test? Did she want me to show that I would fight for her? Was I supposed to tell her I had to find out what we could be together or was it exactly as it sounded.
I paused, closed my eyes and saw her eyes staring back at me. I could feel her body pressed up against mine and I remembered how for just a moment she kissed me back. It hadn't been a reaction, it was voluntary.
"Action speak louder than words. You can say what you want. You can claim that we are only friends but I think you are lying to yourself. That is not how I want to go through life. I don't know what to make of anything, but I know there is something here."
She asked me now to make it any harder and I told her it was her fault. When we hung up the phone I closed my eyes again and wondered what the hell had happened. Something had changed and I wasn't quite sure what it was.
I just knew that when I went to sleep it was with her scent in my nose and the feel of her body against mine.
This is what they call a "real predicament."