Third Date

Samantha ran a brush through her hair, cursing at the wind-born snarls. It was bad enough with the damp weather. She plucked another handful of broken strands from the brush’s teeth. There was no way she was going to get it orderly in time for dinner. Resigned, she grabbed a hair tie and pulled it back.

This would be the third date. An important threshold, if you asked Samantha’s mother. Samantha had hoped to be perfectly prepared by now. All her clothes were laid out, her makeup choices locked in. Late bus, bad weather, broken heel… and now she was almost running late with barely enough time to put lipstick on and run out the door.

Jeremy was already waiting at the restaurant when Samantha arrived, although she was only a few minutes behind schedule. He smiled as she stepped off the bus.

“You look lovely, as always,” he said. He grinned, showing his perfect teeth. Samantha was pretty sure he was lying. Nobody was that blind. But she’d take it, nonetheless.

She walked up to him and gave him a quick, public-appropriate kiss and a slightly-longer-than-appropriate hug. “And you are dashing, as always,” she replied. “I know perfectly well this weather is hell on my hair.”

He smiled again. “It is a rarely beautiful form of hell, then,” he said.

Jeremy always seemed to know how to put her at ease. He always knew the right thing to say. And here we were, a third date, and Samantha hadn’t scared him off yet.

She really wished she didn’t have to keep lying to him.