Twirling the ringlet of hair that crept sneakily away from her brow, where it was supposed to stay, she stole a glance at his chiseled face.
One eye on his smartphone, he looked up briefly, flashed a quick smile at her and asked, ‘So what do you like to do?’
Head whirring, she thought desperately about what she ought to answer.
I love to read, you know? The kind of books that make me forget what day it is or what I ought to eat for lunch or how warm it is in the room because I forgot to open the windows before settling down to read. I love the smell of paper between my fingers, the kind of musty smell that drives me crazy with longing and whips me into a feverish frenzy that won’t let me rest until I’ve finished the last word on the last page of the last chapter.
You know that feeling you get when you have to say goodbye to a close friend at a college reunion? That’s how I feel when a book ends. A part of me weeps that the story is done and I want to dive right back into the experience all over again.
Fingers clutched the warm cup of coffee that sat smoking on the table between them. If it could talk, it would urge her to open up her heart and spill it all out for him to hear.
Instead, she cleared her throat and gently replied, ‘Oh, I like reading.’ Within seconds, she flushed a deep red because she felt he might be judging her. Reading? Who reads these days? Shouldn’t people be all tech-savvy and up to date with the latest apps?
Eyes gleaming, he put the phone down, looked up at her oval visage, glowing in the setting sun, and said, ‘What a coincidence. I like to read too!’
Suddenly, the earth seemed to move again and she relaxed into the comfortable cradle created between them- a haven that only bibliophiles knew.