Wearing a pale blue, button-down shirt tucked into my favorite black slacks, I left without a tie. There was substantial debate in my mind over the tie, considering the date was starting at an art gallery, but I didn’t want to appear overdressed for the date. I considered bringing a sports jacket as well, but the August heat was just too much for me to pull the jacket off without sweating rivers, unless I cheated. Magic was a constant in my life these days, always tempting me to do something beyond the means of most. I managed fine without using any magic on my past dates, but I knew there were times I considered it in the back of my mind. Perhaps I should have saved Niele’s dress, since the wine ruining it was completely my fault. I didn’t though. I was trying to have a normal date, a date that wouldn’t remind me of Alma at every turn. Today was my best chance yet, even with my memories of similar thoughts nagging at my brain. Trix was different though. I couldn’t say what about her was so different than the rest, but I was certain something about that girl was exceptional, even beyond her talent at gaming. Then again, part of me needed this date to be a step above the rest just to ease my mind, negating that terrible possibility that my dating life was cursed.
Breaking the terrible curse, assuming it did exist, would require my “A” game I learned a fair amount at the art gallery I visited for work yesterday and hoped to use that knowledge for an edge in my date, assuming Trix was dressed for it. Not having any means to contact her made planning a date all the more complicated. Perhaps I should have brought a change of attire with me, but I would be late if I turned around now. What if she had her own plan that involved paintballing or some other athletic event? I really should have planned better, but surely she wouldn’t mind a quick shopping trip if I needed a change of clothes. Whatever happened, I surely would be able to work things out if I just stayed calm, stayed calm with a beautiful girl patiently waiting on me in all my ineptitude. I really should have considered asking Aaliyah for a guide to dating. Though she lacked experience, she probably could do better research into it than I did. Of course, there were certain thing which popped up in my own research that I didn’t feel she should be reading. Maybe asking the little genius wouldn’t have ended well.
When I arrived, I looked around with anxiety hastening my search. What if the mysterious beauty didn’t show? Being stood up two days in a row would probably shatter the slim remainder of my confidence. My eyes eventually locked onto a pastel blue dress with lace around the neck and partway down both arms. Trix’s shoulders were bare due to a break in the lace. I wasn’t meaning to stare, but her legs looked fantastic all the way down to the matching pastel heels she wore. The countless straps up to her ankle made me wonder how such shoes were even donned. I took a calming breath before approaching her, since she didn’t seem to notice me yet. She was staring at her phone and intently pressing the screen. Even when I stood next to her, she didn’t look up, so I took a peek at what she was doing. “Trying to beat my high scores?” I asked, seeing that she was playing Laser Bubbles. “You know, this game is fairly addictive. I actually beat the high scores I got on your phone last night, so I’m guessing you haven’t been playing.” she replied, not looking up. “Oh. Sorry, but I generally play Ancient Tribes of Earth when I’m home. It’s even more addictive, and I have a guild to run.” I admitted. She smiled and continued playing, so I took a seat next to her. “Sorry. I’ll be ready in a moment. I just want to finish this stage,” she said.
After winning, Trix laughed and hugged me, which was unexpectedly pleasant. I was surprisingly less nervous now than I had been while preparing this morning. “Any chance you would enjoy going to an art gallery with me?” I asked. “Art gallery? Sure. That could be fun.” she told me. “Excellent! Mind if I drive?” I inquired. “Only if you’re kidnapping me,” she said with a grin. “Well, you’ll have to be very persuasive before I’m convinced to go that far.” I claimed, though I couldn’t imagine myself doing such a thing. As we walked to Mila, Trix had me laughing with her quick wit and amazing smile. She had a great sense of humor. “I love your car. Are you a Bond fan?” she asked, taking a walk around Mila. “Oh yeah. My father and I love watching those movies together. Getting this was just a lucky break though. I worked on cars a fair amount at a friend’s father’s shop, and they got me this car as a gift. Then Jarod, the friend, fixed it up with the help of a little genius I know.” I explained. “A ‘little genius’? Sounds like an interesting person.” she commented. I nodded and said, “Yeah. You definitely could say she’s interesting. You’d probably get along, considering you enjoy Laser Bubbles. She wrote it.” Trix looked surprised and took a moment before saying, “Wow. She must be talented.”
We were still talking about games when I pulled into the gallery’s parking lot, resisting the urge to demonstrate Ancient Tribes of Earth on Mila’s windshield. Any girl so interested in gaming would be impressed by my guild. Nonetheless, I continued to resist and walked with Trix into the gallery. We started by visiting sculptures, and I managed to regurgitate some of what I learned yesterday, which seemed to impress her. Mother would be happy to see me taking an interest in art if a date wasn’t involved. Well, maybe she would be just as happy to see me on a date with this girl. Maybe. I didn’t fully understand mother’s criteria for who I should date. Trix and I took turns posing with statues for pictures and took a few together. When I fumbled on a painting’s name after we moved into that section, I was surprised that Trix knew which it was. She took over being the tour guide and showed me up well, making me worry over what I might have gotten wrong with the sculptures. My worry had trouble finding deep rooting as the pictures continued. Trix really lit up a room with her smile, and her laugh was even more contagious. As I listened to her describe how a picture of the night sky made her feel, I was captivated by her words and felt moved, as if vast expansions yet unexplored to me were opening in my mind to show me a glimpse of glory I wanted to know.
After seeing and posing with numerous paintings on countless subjects, I inquired “How would you feel about going ice skating next? There happens to be skating rink to which we can walk from here if you’re interested in going.” With an unfaltering smile, she said, “Sounds wonderful. I haven’t gone skating for a while.” More than her words or even the playful curve of her lips, I was entranced by her incredible eyes, eyes which made me relax in their familiarity. Trix casually looped her arm around mine as we walked out of the gallery, and I was all smiles. I knew I was grinning like an idiot as we talked our way to the rink, but things really seemed to be going well for once. Trix was intelligent and charming, playful and sophisticated, beautiful and enjoyable; she was truly incredible, so why did I catch myself looking for a pair of violet eyes watching over us from afar? Walking into the rink, the chill sent a shiver through me, making me wish I brought my jacket. Trix’s warmth next to me was emphasized all the more by the cool air, and she was cuddling into me, obviously feeling the cold as well. We rented skates and went onto the ice hand-in-hand, gliding easily together.
Trix turned out to be a better skater than me, doing tricks I couldn’t even name. To say she was graceful was to say the ice was slick. Even though she far outclassed me, she was always holding my hand a second later, skating beside me when she could be soaring ahead… like Alma. Alma was a being so much faster and stronger than me, always watching over me, and yet somehow interested in me, not what I could do for her. I really couldn’t think of anything I could do for a girl who seemed to have everything, but… Trix lips connected with mine as she pulled me down toward her, banishing all other thoughts from my mind. This wasn’t my first kiss, but I might as well have never kissed a girl before for all I knew to do. I was lost in a beautiful sensation unable to comprehend that I was supposed to do anything. Luckily, my lips seemed to know what to do where my mind was blank, but with the parting of our lips came a moment of emptiness as I tried to cling to that amazing feeling I had known. Those eyes gazing up at me, that sweet smile before me, and even those hands clinging to me brought the world back into focus in the most incredible way. I was on a wonderful date not due to anything I managed to plan, but because the girl with whom I spent time was wonderful.
Floating back to the car with her hand in mine, my heart was still racing. A distant thought was trying to impose itself on my mind, telling me that I needed to figure out where to eat, but I couldn’t focus on food at a time like this. When we sat in Mia’s luxurious interior, Trix surprised by pulling a basket from the back seat. “What’s that?” I inquired. “Our lunch, silly. At least, I hope you don’t mind, but I put together a picnic basket thinking we could eat in a park.” she explained, seeming adorably uncertain with her smile faltering. “I would love to try your cooking.” I blurted, obviously not thinking too clearly. She giggled and asked told me of a park just a few minutes away. The park turned out to be fairly small, but pretty. Sitting amongst the trees, I could almost forget that we were in the city, even the sounds were subdued. I spread out the sheet from the basket and we sat next to one another admiring the general splendor as we ate. When I told her that her cooking surpassed that of most restaurants I visited recently, she blushed and said, “Thank you. I was hoping you wouldn’t mind.” She was so delightful that I didn’t want our date to end, but I didn’t have anything else planned. Was she even free for much else? I needed more time.